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April 15, 2013 6:57 pm

Why Does Independence Day Immediately Follow Memorial Day in Israel?

avatar by Zach Pontz

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Israelis observe a moment of silence during Memorial Day in 2007. Photo: Wikipedia.

It’s been a busy week for Israel. First there was Holocaust Remembrance Day last Monday, then today is the country’s Remembrance Day for fallen soldiers and victims of terror; finally tomorrow is Independence Day. But why do Israelis mourn one day and celebrate the next? Isn’t that pivot a little extreme? The official English-language IDF blog explains:

“Yom HaZikaron and Yom HaAtzmaut are back-to-back for a purpose. The celebrations of Independence Day are not empty or for their own sake. We celebrate with the acute awareness that without the incredible sacrifice of those we lost, there would be no State of Israel. Yom HaZikaron fills our Yom HaAtzmaut with meaning – it compels us to push ahead, to continue to build, and to never take our lives, our families, or our friends for granted.”

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