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Israel's Independence Day

Updated on June 27, 2015
Everyone waves their Israeli flag on Yom Hatzmaot!
Everyone waves their Israeli flag on Yom Hatzmaot! | Source

Today is Israel's Independence Day. I can't help but think that is a bit of an oxymoron. Regardless, it is a glorious day, filled with celebration and fun. Independence Day in Israel is celerated much like Independence day in America with parades, picnics, bar-b-ques and fireworks. There are carnivals and bands. People are singing and dancing and everyone is in good spirits. It is a good day. A happy day.

"Israel is still the only country in the world against which there is a written document to the effect that it must disappear."~Menachim Begin

An Israeli Timeline!

"In Israel, in order to be a realist you must believe in miracles."~David Ben-Gurion

The State of Israel is Born!

On May 14th, 1948, the State of Israel was established. This was just eight hours before the end of the British Mandate of Palestine. Then leader, David Ben-Gurion (who would later become Prime Minister of Israel) declared the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz Yisrael. This day would be known as Yom Ha'atzmaot. Independence Day! It was quickly recognized as a state by the Soviet Union and the United States, as well as many other countries. It was not, however recognized by the nearby Arab States, who immediatelly marched with their troops to the former British mandate area.

Whose Land is It Anyway? The Israeli/Arab Conflict

There is much confusion and many misconceptions on who can claim Israel as their own. One of the the best, most comprehensive and understandable articles about this was written by none other than one of my fellow hub writers, point2make. Please take a look at his hub, Palestine.....Israeli or Arab..Whose Land is it Really?

The State of Israel

A
Palestine:
Palestinian Territories

get directions

A indicates the Palestinian Territories.

B
Israel:
Israel

get directions

B represents Israeli areas.

Traditional Foods of Israel

Probably the three most well known foods of Israel are:

  1. Falafel, a fried chickpea patty.
  2. Pita, a round flatbread.
  3. Hoummous, a flavorful spread made from chickpeas.
  4. Oranges are also plentiful in Israel so figure prominently in their advertisements.
  5. Olives.

Having lived in Israel for 12 years, I can tell you that most Israelis would add Cous-Cous to that list, among other delicious foods. Check out my recipes in my Breakfast with Miriam series!

On Yom Ha'atzmaut, you will see many Israelis eating Al ha'aish (bar-b-que). They will probably have pita and hoummous with it and olives, too!


Yom Ha'atzmaut is Celebrated Around the World

Israeli Independence Day is celebrated by Jews around rhe world. The establishment of a Jewish State is something to revel in! In Israel itself, it is a national holiday that is celebrated in much the same way that Americans celebrate Independence Day. In America, Jews use Yom Ha'atzmaut to express their solidarity with Israel. American Synagogues and Jewish Organizations often plan big. combined celebrations throughout the Jewish Community. Jewish Canadians celebrate much like Americans. They organise activities to celebrate Israeli customs, like folk dancing. France is home to many Morrocan Jews and they also show their solidarity by preparing traditional foods and "Walking for Israel." In the UK, the Jewish Communities prepare and organized event. They wear blue and white (the colors of the Israeli flag) and partake of some traditional refreshments.

"If you will it, it is no dream."~Theodore Herzel

A Unique Way to Celebrate and Honor Israeli Soldiers

While Yom Ha'atzmaut is an anniversary date. The Israeli govenment decided to declare the day before Yom HaZikaron. Memorial Day. Having grown up in America, I cannot begin to tell you what a great idea it was to do it this way. I have noticed more and more in America that Memorial Day is celebrated by a day off, picnics, parties, bar-b-ques, drinking, etc. It is hard to be solemn and honor our soldiers when you are occupied making potato salad and chilling the beer. I think Israel did it right by putting the two holidays back-to-back. On Memorial Day, you honor the people who fought/are fighting for your country. There are no picnics or parties. There are ceremonies for Veterans and families of fallen soldiers. It is a solemn, respectful, contemplative day. The following day is all about the fun. And how much more appreciative are we of our independence than after spending a day remembering how difficultly our freedom is earned.

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    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, sunilkunnoth! How very kind! Much appreciated!

    • sunilkunnoth2012 profile image

      Sunil Kumar Kunnoth 

      5 years ago from Calicut (Kozhikode, South India)

      The people of Israel are courageous, intelligent and hardworking. The country has improved richly during the last 50 years. I always had love for Israel. Thank you for sharing your knowledge here. I also wish learn more about the Jews, their culture, etc.

    • everymom profile image

      Anahi Pari-di-Monriva 

      5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Thanks Randi! I will definitely check out the series!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Anahi! Check out my "Breakfast with Miriam" series. Miriam is my mother-in-law. There are 20 hubs where I talk about some of my experiences in Israel. The first one is "Learning to Live in a Foreign Country" Cous-cous is number 18! Thank you for the votes! Much appreciated! Shalom!

    • everymom profile image

      Anahi Pari-di-Monriva 

      5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Randi, thank you for a very informative hub. I think it's important to see every nation on this Earth as a collection of human beings, not just political ideas/ends/goals; this hub brings Israel to us as a land of people who love their country, just as we do. I really wish we humans would start seeing our universality in diversity! Shalom, peace and I do hope you write more hubs about your life in Israel (and, share more recipes, please! I used to have a really tasty and easy latke recipe that used cream cheese but I've misplaced it and never found one like it again...and I truly miss good potato pancakes in December! And, perhaps you could even share some Sephardic recipes, such as from Moroccan Jews - with couscous?!). Again, thanks! Voted up, awesome, interesting!

    • everymom profile image

      Anahi Pari-di-Monriva 

      5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Randi, thank you for a very informative hub. I think it's important to see every nation on this Earth as a collection of human beings, not just political ideas/ends/goals; this hub brings Israel to us as a land of people who love their country, just as we do. I really wish we humans would start seeing our universality in diversity! Shalom, peace and I do hope you write more hubs about your life in Israel (and, share more recipes, please! I used to have a really tasty and easy latke recipe that used cream cheese but I've misplaced it and never found one like it again...and I truly miss good potato pancakes in December! And, perhaps you could even share some Sephardic recipes, such as from Moroccan Jews - with couscous?!). Again, thanks! Voted up, awesome, interesting!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, billdo1! I appreciate your stopping by and your votes up!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, savvydating for stopping by and reading my hub, I appreciate your generous comments!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Alex! It is indeed a spectacular country and so misunderstood! I was blessed to have lived there and proud to have been able to raise my kids there. Thank you so much for the votes!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      So sad and so true, Leslie! Peple would rather believe the half a**ed reports they see! I just may have to do more on this subject! Thank you so much for your votes and share! Always appreciated! Shalom and peace out!

    • billd01603 profile image

      billd01603 

      5 years ago from Worcester

      Good, informative HUB btrbell.I enjoyed it voted up and interesting

    • savvydating profile image

      Yves 

      5 years ago

      Israel, the only democracy in the middle east, where culture abounds. Oh, how I wish more people would respect their achievements and bravery, and frankly, their restraint...

      Israel is indeed a secular nation, despite the fear others harbor for what some deem their religiosity. Nevertheless, the nation of Israel continues to thrive. Happy Independence Day.

    • profile image

      SilverGenes 

      5 years ago

      I'm absolutely thrilled to read this hub and the other by point2make. There has been so much misunderstanding and this certainly contributes to some much needed clarity. Israel is amazing is every sense of the word. You only need to look at a map to understand just what this magnificent country has accomplished. Awesome and UP!

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 

      5 years ago

      if only people realized that without israel as a friendly base in the middle east - we'd be toast in no time!

      Mazel tov to Israel and shalom to you dear Randi - great tribute to Israel..

      voting up and sharing..

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Colin! I didn't know about the depression and anxiety but I do know that it is a rough time right now. So happy to see you back!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 

      5 years ago

      Well this is an important history lesson for me , Randi, and thank you for bringing this amazing story to my attention . I've been away too for about 2 weeks from the Hub due to some mental and physical health issues as you know how I suffer from depression and anxiety. I sincerely hope though all is well with your family and four legged friends too. Tiffy and Gabriel and I watched the daybreak and the sunrise this morning and spring like weather has finally arrived in these parts.

      Sending 3 big time Canadian hugs to you dear Randi from C and T and G at lake erie time 1:42pm

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      I lived in Moshav Shahar in Lachish Dorom for 12 years,

    • israelnaturally profile image

      israelnaturally 

      5 years ago from Israel

      I'm in Rishon LeZion. How about you?

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, israelnaturally! I appreciate the visit and comment! Where in Israel are you?

    • israelnaturally profile image

      israelnaturally 

      5 years ago from Israel

      Great hub! I really enjoyed it.

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much, Martie! I went through a time period where I read so many books written about Israel or by Israelis. It was an eye-opening experience and I learned much more than I expected. I appreciate your comments and interest!

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      5 years ago from South Africa

      Oh, I love this part of the New Israel's history, and I do believe that David Ben-Gurion was one of the best leaders ever. Amazing what the Israelis did with that piece of land since 1948.

      Leon Uris wrote two (maybe more) excellent novels with New Israel's history in the background. 'Exodus' and 'Mitla Pass'.

      Excellent hub, btrbell!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Jackie, thanbk you so much for reading and ading your generous comments. From your mouth to G-ds ears! Amen!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      5 years ago from The Beautiful South

      My bible leaves no doubt in my mind who Israel belongs to and to just look at all the terror brought against the Jew lets anyone know someone fears their existence. Today more than ever we should support and love these people, for as much as I claim my heavenly promise I know the Jew will inherit the earth and we wait for the same Savior.

      Amen!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, drbj! I truly appreciate your supportive comments! Point2make has some great points to make! I am glad you enjoyed it!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      5 years ago from south Florida

      This is an excellent, informational hub, Randi, I do appreciate your research, and thanks for the intro to Point2Make.

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, faithreaper! My beautiful second home appreciates prayers from wonderful people like you! Thank you so much for you votes and share! xo Randi

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you for stopping by, angel2013!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      So true and so sad, kj! Thanks for stopping by.

      Glad you had some goodies to eat. I did the traditional cous-cous because it is my daughter's favorite and it was her b-day!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      IDK, someonewhoknows, politics are politics! They will always be divided and even more so in countries that are already at war. Thanks for stopping by!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      5 years ago from southern USA

      Randi,

      Thank you for sharing this beautiful hub here. We must always support Israel no matter what!!!

      Voted up ++++ and sharing

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • angel 2013 profile image

      angel 2013 

      5 years ago from North Carolina

      Thank you very much.

    • kj force profile image

      kjforce 

      5 years ago from Florida

      btrbell...Patriots Day in Boston...Yom Ha' atzmaut....Boston Marathon...

      How disgusting that three beautiful positives in our day could turn in a matter of minutes....a memory many will carry the rest of their lives....

      My G-S made homemade Hoummous/Olive wraps which we ate for supper last night...thank you for sharing an very informative hub..

    • someonewhoknows profile image

      someonewhoknows 

      5 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

      Is it,just me who thinks so or are Israel's political and or religious leader's are divided over the direction the country as a whole is going much like it seems many other countries worldwide are divided as they are in the middle east ,or is it that those who are the most aggressive rather than progressive in their beliefs that are the ones who run those countries?

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, point2make! What a generous compliment coming from a writer of your calibre!

    • btrbell profile imageAUTHOR

      Randi Benlulu 

      5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you so much, Bill! It is difficult. I will probably write a bit more about the conflict in a different hub.

    • point2make profile image

      point2make 

      5 years ago

      What a super hub btrbell.....I thoroughly enjoyed it...well done!. Independence Day in Israel takes on such a different meaning than here in the West. Our Independence was fought for and won more than two centuries ago and we celebrate it every year with pride and gratitude. Israel's Independence must be defended and reaffirmed, sometimes with force, continuously. She can neither sleep nor slumber and must always be prepared. It really gives true meaning to....." Independence Day"!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you for the information on Israel. I think many Americans are confused by the situation over there. They know that Israel is an ally but they don't understand why the bloodshed continues. It is a mess and I hope and pray it gets better soon. Well done!

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