Israel's millennials helped re-elect Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — and are the driving force in a rising ultra-Orthodox population, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Born close to or after the 1993 Oslo peace accords between the Israelis and Palestinians, and coming of age during the second Palestinian "intifada," Israel's young people take a harder line on security and peace than older generations.
"The hope or yearning for peace is foreign to them," said Yohanan Plesner, president of the Israel Democracy Institute, a think tank in Jerusalem, told the Journal.
Ahead of the election, Netanyahu had the support of almost two-thirds of 18- to 24-year-olds and 54% of 25- to 34-year-olds, according to an institute survey, the Journal reported. The survey also found more than 55% of Israelis call themselves right wing, up from 40% a decade earlier.
But Netanyahu also played to his young base by pledging to consider legalizing recreational marijuana; more than 40% of Israelis 18-25 have smoked pot in the past year — the highest rate in the world, according to the United Nations, the Journal reported.
The prime minister also has been in power during a period of economic expansion.
"They like his policies on security and the economy," Netanyahu's pollster, John McLaughlin, told the Journal.
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