Jewish Israeli youth moving rightward

'Not enough awareness of democratic values among youth'

JERUSALEM - Young Israeli Jews are moving steadily to the right and a majority say strong leadership trumps legal checks and balances, according a poll published on Thursday in Israel's Haaretz daily.
The survey, conducted by the Dahaf polling institute, found that 60 percent of Jewish respondents aged between 15 and 18 years said they preferred "strong" leaders to the rule of law.
"Seventy percent say that in cases where state security and democratic values conflict, security should come first," the poll showed.
It said it obtained similar results from a group of 21 to 24-year-olds.
Haaretz said that the poll, commissioned by Germany's Friedrich Ebert Foundation and the Tel Aviv-based Macro Centre for Political Economics and conducted by the Dahaf Institute, questioned 1,600 Israeli Jews and Arabs between the ages of 15-24 last July.
It did not break down the relative number of Jews and Arabs questioned nor give a margin of error.
It said that over the 12 years in which the youth study has been conducted, backing among young Jews for right-wing policies rose from 48 percent to 62 percent, while support for the left fell from 32 percent to 12 percent.
Haaretz quoted Macro centre director Roby Nathanson as saying that the Israeli government must pump money into educating for democracy.
"There is not enough awareness of democratic values among youth," he said. "Democracy is not just voting once every four years. It also includes values such as tolerance."