Ale Yarok (Hebrew: עָלֶה יָרוֹק, lit. 'Green Leaf'), is a liberal political party in Israel best known for its ideology of legalizing cannabis. To date, it has had no representation in the Knesset. Ale Yarok has not yet met the electoral threshold for inclusion in any of the elections that they have contested.
Established in 1999 by Boaz Wachtel, Shlomi Sandak, and Rafik Kimchi, the party gained 1% of the vote in the elections that year, and 1.2% in the 2003 elections, but both times failed to pass the 1.5% threshold for representation in the Knesset. After these elections and despite the strong results in the 2003 elections, the chairman of Ale Yarok, Boaz Wachtel announced that he was giving up the leadership of the party, but remained in the position due to party members requests.
Before the 2006 elections the party announced that it intended to run for a third time, despite the threshold for representation having been raised to 2%. The party competed for votes with the supporters of the Democratic Choice (which later stepped down from running in the election) and with Meretz-Yachad, which had also promised to act for the decriminalization of soft drugs; another competitor was the Green Party with a strong ecological platform. The party gained 1.3% of the vote, and came second among those parties failing to make the threshold. After the election, Wachtel passed the chairmanship to Ohad Shem-Tov.
Before the 2009 elections, Shem-Tov was expelled from the party by Shlomi Sandak who was the temporary chairman of the Green Leaf Party. Internal disputes led the party to split with Shem-Tov forming the Ale Yarok Alumni group. The Alumni party later allied with the Holocaust Survivors party to contest the 2009 Knesset elections. In this elections Ale Yarok was led by the Israeli Comedian Gil Kopatch.
For the 2013 elections, it ran with some members of the "New Liberal Movement" (an Israeli libertarian nonpartisan organization, also known as the Israeli Freedom Movement). under the name "Ale Yarok-The Liberal list". In these elections the party presented a broad liberal platform.
Since December 2014, Oren Lebovitch is the chairman of the party. Lebovitch, the editor-in-chief of the Israeli Cannabis Magazine, lead the party to its highest number of voters on the March 2015 election.
The party's current platform is based on the legalization of the cannabis plant, marijuana and hashish, expansion of human rights, free market and institutionalization of prostitution and gambling. In official publications the movement claims that "the partition between right-wing and left-wing is anachronistic"; it believes that any proposed solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict must be put on referendum in order to be legitimate. It takes a left-wing stance on the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.
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- Cannabis in Israel
- Cannabis: Legal issues
- Drug liberalization
- Drug policy reform
- Marijuana parties
- Politics of Israel
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- ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: מכניסים עלה ירוק לכנסת (Vote Ale Yarok for the Knesset). YouTube (in Hebrew). Ale Yarok. Retrieved 4 October 2019.
- ^ "1999 Election Results (Final)". Knesset. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
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- ^ "2006 Election Results". Knesset. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- ^ "Holocaust survivors team up with marijuana activists in odd coalition". 3 News. 9 February 2009. Archived from the original on 4 October 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- ^ Ryan Jones (14 September 2011). "Israeli libertarians lobby against big government". Israel Today. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- ^ Ben Hartman (10 December 2012). "Green Leaf unveils libertarian strain ahead of polls". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- ^ Sefi Krupsky (19 March 2015). "Israel's cannabis legalization party and the other slates that didn't make it". Haaretz. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- ^ Shmuel Sandler; Manfred Gerstenfeld; Jonathan Rynhold (18 October 2013). Israel at the Polls 2006. Routledge. p. 281. ISBN 9781317969921. Retrieved 21 June 2015.
- Official website (in Hebrew)