Movement for the Homeland (Acre)

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Movement for the Homeland
תנועה למען המולדת
LeaderRobert Lieberman
Founded5 February 2020
Ideology • Social conservatism
 • Nationalism
 • (Russian) Israeli interests
 • No-state solution
Internal Factions
 • Russian-speaking interests
 • National conservatism
Official colours     Blue
Akkan Parliament
4 / 37
CountryAkkoflag2.png Acre

The Movement for the Homeland is a right-wing political party in the Islamic Emirate of Acre, seeking to represent Russian-speaking Israelis. The party is socially conservative, and more homogenous than the Conservative Party in its social beliefs. It is also nationalist, endorsing a secular form of Israeli Zionism. Since the October 2020 general election, the party has served in government with the Conservative Party and the Labor Zionist Party. Its leader, Robert Lieberman serves as Speaker in the Akkan Parliament.

History

Robert Lieberman (February 2020 - present)

The Movement for the Homeland was created to represent Russian-speaking Israelis, most of whom are migrants (or their descendants) from the 1990s post-Soviet aliyah. From the outset it positioned itself as a party to the right of the Conservative Party.

In the February 2020 general election, the Movement outperformed expectations, winning 9% of the vote and three seats in the Akkan Parliament. The Liberal Union, who won the election, formed a coalition government with the Labor Zionist Party supported through confidence and supply by the Arab People's Democratic Union, much to the fury of the Movement. Robert Lieberman was vociferously opposed to the retention of the Akkan Emirate, the Sharia courts and the Shura Council. Unlike most other parties, the Movement was also hostile to Joseph Cohen's 'two-flag', 'two-religion' approach, as the party is secularist, preferring the removal of any mention of religion in state institutions. The Movement while in opposition was something of a 'mirror image' to the other opposition parties; it opposed most of the Liberal Union's social and institutional policies, but was less vocally critical of Cohen's steadfast opposition to a national lockdown in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. By contrast, the other opposition parties broadly supported Cohen's constitutional agenda, instead lambasting him for his lockdown policy.

In the October 2020 general election the Movement's vote share declined by 4%, with the party losing a seat to the Conservatives. Nevertheless, Ben Adelman of the Conservative Party invited Robert Lieberman to form a coalition government with the Labor Zionists. He also hoped to bring in the Arab Peace & Equality Party to secure a majority in Parliament, but they refused, citing the nationalism of the Movement. The remaining parties failed to form a government of their own, and so Hafez I accepted Adelman as Prime Minister of a minority coalition government, and Lieberman was made Speaker.

Adelman proceeded to censure Joseph Cohen for his handling of the Coronavirus, which caused Cohen's popularity to plummet. After a Peace & Equality Party member alleged that Cohen sought the party's support for a vote of no confidence, Adelman pre-emptively held a vote himself. The government lost by 19-18, triggering the December 2020 general election. The Movement increased their vote share by 1%, but this was insufficient to win an additional seat. The Conservatives and the Labor Zionists however both picked up seats, leaving Adelman with a new majority of three in Parliament. The Movement hoped that with this new majority, Adelman's government could undo several of the constitutional reforms enacted by Joseph Cohen, starting with the dissolution of the Shura Council and a referendum on the Akkan Emirate.

Policies

Social Conservatism

The Movement is socially conservative, emphasising the importance of tradition, hierarchical power structures, the family unit and patriotism. Since its inception the party has opposed the Islamic elements within the Akkan constitution, seeking to abolish the Emirate, the Shura Council and the Sharia courts. They also hope to remove both Islam and Judaism as the state's official religions, creating instead a secular presidential republic which emphasises its Israeli identity. The Movement is more influenced by American neoconservatism than, say, Burkean conservatism, though they are notably distinct from the American right in their belief that religion should be relegated to the private sphere. The Movement is explicitly modelled on the Israeli Yisrael Beiteinu, a conservative nationalist secularist party. The Movement also actively promotes a form of economic nationalism to protect the interests of workers.

Nationalism

The Movement embraces a form of secular Zionist nationalism. Like most other Israeli Akkan parties, they hope to re-join Israel as a devolved region. The party's nationalism motivates their steadfast opposition to Islamic imagery and institutions in Acre, which they believe undermine Acre's status as an Israeli micronation.

Russian-speaking Israeli Interests

The Movement caters specifically to Russian-speaking Israelis, many of whom are not matrilineally Jewish but are instead the family members of Jews. Most came to Israel during the 1990s post-Soviet aliyah, and many settled in the city of Haifa, constituting 25% of its population today. Many Russian-speaking Israelis are working-class, and live in and around the dockland and other lowland parts of Haifa. The population are often secular in outlook and socially conservative.

The party does also attract a number of non-Russian-speaking Israelis, most of whom join the Movement due to its homogenous support for social conservatism and Israeli nationalism.

No-state solution

The Movement for the Homeland opposes the creation of an independent Palestinian state, instead suggesting that Egypt should take responsibility for Gaza and Palestinians living in the West Bank should be given Jordanian citizenship. Israel would continue to manage the security affairs of the West Bank and would annex all Israeli settlements, while Arab settlements like Hebron would operate as autonomous municipalities of Jordan. The Movement argues that any independent Palestinian state would constitute a security threat to Israel, necessitating a continued presence in the West Bank.

Electoral Performance

The Movement relies on Russian-speaking-dominated parts of Haifa to win seats; Kiryat Yam and western working-class parts of the city are the most fertile ground for the Movement, though these areas are also contested by the Labor Zionist Party and the Conservative Party. Pockets of support in Haifa's eastern suburbs outside of Kiryat Yam also exist.

Election year Leader % +/- seats won +/- Government
February 2020 9% N/A
3 / 37
N/A in opposition
October 2020 5% 4%
2 / 37
1 in minority government
December 2020 6% 1%
2 / 37
0 in coalition government
April 2021 Robert Lieberman 11% 5%
4 / 37
2 in opposition

Timeline of Party Leaders

Name Term start Term end Notes
Robert Lieberman 5 February 2020 Incumbent

Factions

Russian-speaking Caucus

Most members of the Movement for the Homeland are russian-speaking émigrés (and their descendants), most of whom emigrated to Israel during the post-Soviet aliyah. Many settled within the city of Haifa, making up 25% of its population. Russian-speaking Israelis are often secular in their outlook, as many emigrated as non-Jewish family members of matrilineally Jewish émigrés. Most are also employed within Haifa's ports and factories, and often support a form of economic nationalism, including state support for large domestic companies, import substitution strategies, and tax breaks for Haifa's large industrial sector.

Like the National Conservative Caucus, the Russian-speaking Caucus is vocally critical of liberal social policies and strongly supportive of removing Arab institutions within Acre.

Members include:
 • Robert Lieberman

National Conservative Caucus

The National Conservative Caucus is made up of non-Russian-speaking Israeli nationalists and conservatives, who prefer the relative homogeneity of the Movement's social policy to the disparate opinions present in the Conservative Party. The caucus, like the Russian-speaking Caucus, is strongly supportive of the party's hard-line socially conservative views, though is more supportive of free trade and deregulation of industry.