Story posted: Friday, 23. February 2007 by Rafael Ben-Ari
Yom Ha'atzmaut the Israeli Independence Day, commemorates the declaration of independence of Israel in 1948. It falls on the 5th of the Jewish lunar month Iyar, celebrating the declaration of the state of Israel by David Ben-Gurion in Tel Aviv on May 14, 1948, and the end of the British Mandate in Israel. It is always preceded by Yom Hazikaron, the Israel fallen soldiers Remembrance Day on the 4th of Iyar.An official ceremony is held every year on Mount Herzl on the eve of Yom Ha'atzmaut. The ceremony includes a speech by the speaker of the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament), a dramatic presentation, a ritual march of soldiers carrying the Flag of Israel, forming elaborate structures (such as a Menorah, Magen David and a number which represents the age of Israel) and the lighting of twelve beacons (each for every one of the Tribes of Israel). Every year a dozen Israeli citizens, who made a significant contribution in a selected area, are invited to light the beacons. All Photos by Rafael Ben-Ari/Chameleons Eye
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