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Aseifat Nivharim  Definition

Aseifat Nivharim (Hebrew - Elected Assembly. Variant spellings - Asefat Nivharim, Aseyfat Nivharim, Asefat Nivharim etc. plural - Aseifot Nivharim). The Asefat Nivharim was founded in 1920 along with the Vaad Leumi, which it chose. It was the institution of the Jewish Yishuv that was directly elected by the Knesset Yisrael, those Jews who recognized Zionist authority and constituted the vast majority of the population of Palestine. It was first elected on April 19, 1920. In January 1928, the Mandate government officially recognized the Elected Assembly as the representative body of the Jewish community and provided a budget for the  Vaad Leumi. A large number of delegates - 3 were selected to represent some 20 factions by electors over the age of 25. This unwieldy body met rarely. It elected the Vaad Leumi, the national committee, from among its members, and the Va'ad Leumi in turn selected an even smaller executive.

Elections were held for four different Aseifot Nivharim in April 1920 (314 delegates), December 1925 (221 delegates), January 1935 (71 delegates) and August of 1944 (171 delegates). The National Assembly was dominated by Achdut Ha'avoda and later  Mapai - the Israel Labor party and its allies  in their various transformations.  

Election results for the Aseifat Nivharim seemed to reflect the extreme fragmentation of the small Yishuv because of the way the electoral law had been made. In the elections for the first Aseifat Nivharim, twenty lists competed for about 20,000 votes and about 800 votes were required to elect a delegate. In the 1925 elections for the second Assembly, 29 lists competed. The party of the inhabitants of Bnei Brak, the party of Galilee farmers, the Givat Rambam list and other such colorful factions were examples of the smaller constituents of the assembly. In reality, most of these lists would vote as a bloc with the labor list or the revisionists or another large grouping.

Synonyms and alternate spellings: Knessethh

Further Information:  Political System, Israel

Hebrew/Arabic pronunciation and transliteration conventions:

'H - ('het) a guttural sound made deep in the throat. To Western ears it may sound like the "ch" in loch. In Arabic there are several letters that have similar sounds. Examples: 'hanukah, 'hamas, 'haredi. Formerly, this sound was often represented by ch, especially in German transliterations of Hebrew. Thus, 'hanukah is often rendered as Chanuka for example.

ch - (chaf) a sound like "ch" in loch or the Russian Kh as in Khruschev or German Ach, made by putting the tongue against the roof of the mouth. In Hebrew, a chaf can never occur at the beginning of a word. At the beginning of a word, it has a dot in it and is pronounced "Kaf."

u - usually between oo as in spoon and u as in put.

a- sounded like a in arm

ah- used to represent an a sound made by the letter hey at the end of a word. It is the same sound as a. Haganah and Hagana are alternative acceptable transliterations.

'a-notation used for Hebrew and Arabic ayin, a guttural ah sound.

o - close to the French o as in homme.

th - (taf without a dot) - Th was formerly used to transliterate the Hebrew taf sound for taf without a dot. However in modern Hebrew there is no detectable difference in standard pronunciation of taf with or without a dot, and therefore Histadruth and Histadrut, Rehovoth and Rehovot are all acceptable.

q- (quf) - In transliteration of Hebrew and Arabic, it is best to consistently use the letter q for the quf, to avoid confusion with similar sounding words that might be spelled with a kaf, which should be transliterated as K. Thus, Hatiqva is preferable to Hatikva for example.

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