Labor chairwoman MK Shelly Yacimovich 311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Three dovish parties held political rallies a few blocks away
from each other in Tel Aviv Sunday night in a sign that the battle for the
leadership of the Left has begun.
Labor leader Shelly Yacimovich fired
the opening shot when she told her supporters over the weekend that she would be
the Center-Left bloc’s candidate for prime minister.
trumpeting her party’s potential Sunday night when she told Labor activists that
their party could beat Likud.
“We are the largest party in the
[Center-Left] bloc,” she said during a Labor rally at a Tel Aviv hall hosted by
faction chairman Isaac Herzog.
“We are the only alternative to [Prime
Minister] Binyamin Netanyahu, not because of one poll or another but because we
have a true path that we will lead and stick to, and use to defeat
Yacimovich acknowledged that such a scenario currently
appeared unlikely, but she said the goal could be achieved with enough hard
Meretz leader Zehava Gal-On mocked Yacimovich’s pretensions at a
parlor meeting in a Tel Aviv pub.
“Labor and Kadima are fighting over who
will be the top partner in Netanyahu’s next government,” Gal-On
“Anyone who wants a Center- Left government must give their vote to
Meretz, which is the only party that would not join a Netanyahu-led government
under any circumstance.”
At a pre-Passover toast for members of his
Independence Party, Defense Minister Ehud Barak complained that while the Likud
has had just four leaders, in the past decade Labor has had seven, Kadima four
and Meretz three.
“I see new leaders in Meretz, Labor and Kadima,” Barak
said. “It is unfortunate to see what is happening on the Left. There is
no stability and no ability to focus on regaining power. There is a
tendency to fight to no end.”