A new centrist political party was launched over the weekend by Assaf Yoguri, a Knesset member who defected from the Democratic Movement. He said it would lie “in the middle of the political spectrum” and hoped to win some 12 Knesset seats in next year’s elections.
Independent political observers rated its potential at much less, especially if former Defense Minister Ezer Weizman, who was ousted from likud last month, farms a centrist faction on his own. The new party, as yet unnamed, was formed of a meeting at Yoguri’s home. It was attended by, among others, former Labor MK Mordechai Ben-Porat, former Likud MK Yedidyo Be’eri and Yaakov Aknin who was recently fired by Agriculture Minister Ariel Sharon as director of the Israel Lands Authority.
Ben-Porat has been a strong supporter of former Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan who quit Premier Menachem Begin’s Cabinet in October, 1979. Dayan, on independent MK, has made to definite statements about his future political plans. Be’eri is one of the leading hawks of Likud’s Liberal Party wing. Yoguri himself is best known as the highest ranking Israel army officer ever to be captured by the enemy. As a captain in command of a tank column, he ran straight into on Egyptian trap on the Suez Canal during the Yam Kuppur War.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.