Democratic List of Nazareth

The Democratic List of Nazareth (Hebrew: רְשִׁימָה דֶּמוֹקְרָטִית שֶׁל נָצְרַת, Reshima Demokratit shel Natzrat; Arabic: قائمة الناصرة الديمقراطية‎) was an Arab satellite list in Israel and the only Israeli Arab party to win seats in the first Knesset. The party, which was sponsored by David Ben-Gurion's Mapai,[1] was so named as it was based in Nazareth, the largest Arab city in Israel.

Democratic List of Nazareth

הרשימה הדמוקרטית של נצרת
قائمة الناصرة الديمقراطية
LeaderSeif el-Din el-Zoubi
FoundedLate 1940s
Dissolved1950s
National affiliationMapai
Most MKs2 (1949–1951)
Fewest MKs2 (1949–1951)
Election symbol
יד

HistoryEdit

In the 1949 elections, the Democratic List of Nazareth gained 1.7% of the vote and two seats in the Knesset. It was represented by Seif el-Din el-Zoubi and Amin-Salim Jarjora.

The party was sponsored by Mapai, as Ben Gurion was keen to include Israeli Arabs in the functioning of the state in order to prove Jews and Arabs could co-exist peacefully and productively, and during the 1950s several other Israeli Arab parties associated with Mapai appeared.[1] As a result of the association, the party was part of the coalitions that formed the first and second governments during the first Knesset.

The party did not run in the 1951 election, although el-Zoubi was elected on the list of the Democratic List for Israeli Arabs. Jarjora did not return to the Knesset, but went on to become Mayor of Nazareth in 1954, a position he filled until being replaced by el-Zoubi in 1959.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Jiryis, Sabri (1976). The Arabs in Israel. New York: Monthly Review Press. p. 164. ISBN 0-85345-377-2.

    "Mapai's decision to become politically active among the Arabs was undertaken with some hesitation. There was nothing in its history or ideology to attract the Arabs or win their support. For a start, the party did not even accept Arabs as ranking members, on the grounds that no Arab could be a loyal member of a Zionist party. The party's "experts" on Arab affairs soon suggested solutions, however, for these and other difficulties. Arab participation would be in the form of special lists drawn up before each election on the basis of residence and religious sect from among the party's hangers on. The party machine would undertake financial and influential support of these lists, thus "freeing" then from having to set up their own political apparatus. The allegiance of the successful candidates to the party and their support for the party's position would thus be guaranteed."

External linksEdit