Far-right Jewish Strength party to run for Knesset

Running together with breakoffs from Bayit Yehudi or Shas are being considered.

knesset  (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
There will be a party to the right of Bayit Yehudi that is running in the March 17 election, right-wing activists Itamar Ben- Gvir and Baruch Marzel decided over the weekend.
In last year’s election, their Strong Israel party (Otzma LeYisrael) narrowly failed to cross the 2 percent threshold. Now that the threshold has been raised to 3.25%, the party’s council decided to run under the name the Jewish Strength party (Otzma Yehudit).
The party is to be led by former MK Michael Ben-Ari. Ben- Gvir said he would not rule out joining together with other parties on a joint list as long as Ben- Ari is given a realistic slot to enter the Knesset.
Running together with breakoffs from Bayit Yehudi or Shas are being considered. But Ben- Gvir said running together with Bayit Yehudi was not an option.
“Bennett is not right-wing,” Ben-Gvir said. “He sat in a government that froze construction in Judea and Samaria and released terrorists. He even said 99% of Arabs are loyal to Israel. His ideology is clearly not ours.”
Former MK Arye Eldad’s Hatikva party is to decide on January 1 whether to run with the Jewish Strength. Eldad said that due to the higher threshold, he would recommend against it, unless it is part of a larger combination of parties like the former National Union.
“We did not pass the threshold when it was lower than it is now, and I tend to not repeat mistakes,” Eldad said.
Ben-Gvir posted on his Facebook page last week a request for slogans for his party. Hundreds of suggestions were offered, including many by leftists who mocked the party.
“We got to Rabin, we will get to the government,” Aviv Mizrahi suggested, in a reference to the assassination of former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin.