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Israel celebrates 75th anniversary amid growing domestic divisions

Netanyahu reminded the currently-divided Israeli public that at the end of the day, there is only one people and one country

The 75th anniversary Independence Day ceremony, held at Mount Herzl, Jerusalem, April 25, 2023. (Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

The Jewish state started its 75th anniversary celebration as an independent nation on Tuesday night, amid growing domestic divisions concerning the Netanyahu government’s controversial judicial overhaul.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Israel “a modern miracle” and stressed the need for unity within Israeli society.

“Let’s stop all the noise for a moment, let’s look for a moment at the great wonder that is called the State of Israel. How many miracles have we achieved here in the last 75 years as one people?” stated the prime minister.

Netanyahu reminded Israelis that “we rose from the ashes of the Holocaust to the summit of rebirth.” The Jewish state was reestablished in 1948, merely three years after the Holocaust of six million Jews.

In his address to the nation, Netanyahu listed Israel’s many achievements, such as winning multiple wars, establishing an advanced economy, cultural and scientific creativity, and absorbing millions of Jewish immigrants from all over the world.

Israel is currently home to more than seven million Jews, constituting almost half of World Jewry. By contrast, in 1948 only 5% of the world’s Jews lived in the Jewish state.

The prime minister also mentioned Israel’s historic peace agreements with some of its Arab neighbors, including the recent Abraham Accords, where Netanyahu, himself, played a central role in its realization.

Turning to the future, Netanyahu predicted that Israel would continue to experience miracles and successes.

“There are still miracles ahead of us – achieving security, strengthening our economy and widening the circle of peace,” he said.

While not directly mentioning the current political mayhem within the Jewish state, Netanyahu noted that Israeli achievements were only possible when the nation remained united and committed to single destiny.

“All these miracles and many more are only possible when we march together,” stated Netanyahu.

The prime minister reminded the currently-divided Israeli public that at the end of the day, there is only one people and one country.

“To do it together is to know that we have one people and one country and we will never have another land,” said Netanyahu.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog hosted some 120 outstanding Israel Defense Forces soldiers and their families at the official Independence Day ceremony in Jerusalem.

Addressing the audience, the president said that the Jewish state was born out of dreams carried by generations of Jews around the world. Herzog noted, “We were, and still are, like dreamers.”

Referring to modern Israel as a miracle, the president stressed that all achievements were only realized when the nation was united. “We could not have done any of this if we hadn’t done it all together!” concluded Herzog.

The president’s late father Chaim Herzog, who served as Israel’s sixth president between 1983 and 1993, played an instrumental role in the military during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948.

The respected Soviet-born Jewish freedom fighter Natan Sharansky was born in 1948, the same year modern Israel declared its independence. The former Jewish Agency head has spent much of his life discussing the importance of Israel for the Jewish people. In a recent interview with the Jerusalem Post, Sharansky said the Jewish state offered freedom and a sense of belonging to the Jewish people around the world.

“The existence of Israel and, in a way, the existence of the Jewish people is the best demonstration of the importance of these two basic desires of people – to be free and to belong – and shows how they can empower one another. The Jewish people got their identity and their freedom at the same time, when they left Egypt,” said Sharansky.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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