Yaakov Hagoel
Yaakov Hagoelצילום: חזקי ברוך

World Likud Chairman Yaakov Hagoel in a special Rosh Hashana message discussed the recent election in the the Likud Israel Central Committee that voted to retain the balance of power in the organization, explaining that the Likud constitution will not be changed and delegates from the Diaspora will not lose their place on the list for the World Zionist Congress "as some opportunists sought".

"The Likud movement has been an integral part of Israeli politics," Hagoel wrote. "Its membership sees itself as the fulfillment of Ze'ev Jabotinsky's ideology and the continuation of the path of the great leaders of Israel such as Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir. The Likud is the strongest and largest party in Israel. In the last election, about 30% of eligible voters in Israel voted for the Likud. It represents the national aspirations of the people of Israel who see the importance of a strong economy, political and military power, as well as traditional values.

"World Likud represents the Likud movement in dozens of branches around the globe. These branches conduct regular activities in order to strengthen Jewish and Zionist identity, preserve the Likud's values and help maintain a sense of security for Jewish communities around the world.

"For the past five years, I have had the privilege to lead World Likud and represent its principles while keeping my ears open to the members of our branches and fulfilling their needs in the National Institutions.

"Over the past year, democratic processes have taken place in dozens of our branches around the world. Our representation in the National Institutions has reached a peak thanks to the hard work of Likud branches and activists from different countries, making us a strong presence in the World Zionist Congress.

"Recently, a group of political opportunists, for reasons of self-interest, attempted to change the balance of power. Currently, our constitution stipulates that our representation in the World Likud Convention is to be 60% from World Likud and 40% from the Israeli branch of Likud. These opportunists wanted to reverse the balance of power and make it only 40% for World Likud and 60% for Israeli Likud.

"In other words, they wanted to change the Likud constitution to lessen the power of the elected World Likud delegates and transfer power to the Israeli branch at the expense of our representatives abroad.
This attempt would have also included a retroactive change, meaning that those delegates from World Likud who were democratically elected earlier this year would have lost their place on the list for the upcoming World Zionist Congress. It was like changing the rules of the game while the game was still being played.

"Despite pressure from key figures and politicians, that attempt failed. I congratulate the Likud Israel Central Committee on its clear decision to respect the important role of our activists in the Diaspora.

"The issues that are to be debated at the WZC are fateful ones that affect Israel and the Jewish world. For the past few months, I waged a great struggle to ensure the preservation of the balance of power for Likud's delegates in the Diaspora and I thank all those who supported me in this campaign," Hagoel wrote.