Including Dr Zarka (see above) this year’s Yom Ha’Atzmaut ceremony honored 12 Israelis who had succeeded against all odds. These included Dr. Hodaya Oliel, who has become the first medical doctor in Israel with cerebral palsy and Menashe Zalka, an Ethiopian Israeli soccer player.
The American Friends of Magen David Adom has begun building a new National Blood Service Center in the central Israel city of Ramle. The 5.5-acre state-of-the-art site will make it possible for MDA to continue to serve the blood needs of the IDF and Israel's growing civilian population.
Ahead of Israel’s Independence Day, 220 new immigrants have just arrived from Ukraine. They came on three separate flights organized by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews. 42 have chosen to live in the “Gaza envelope” (e.g. Sderot) in full knowledge of the current situation.
The Christian Zionist organization “Friends of Zion” is one of the largest pro-Israel groups in the world and has just surpassed 60 million members on social media. Its Jerusalem museum is well worth visiting.
New Israeli postage stamps issued on 1st May featured the Mimouna festival, the song Hava Nagila, Memorial Day (Yom Hazikaron) and endangered mammals.
Some 800 members of the ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) community and soldiers attended the first-of-its-kind Memorial Day ceremony in Jerusalem. They included both of Jerusalem’s chief rabbis, other rabbis, and members of the ultra-Orthodox Netzah Yehuda battalion.
Almost every Israeli citizen paused to reflect - even all traffic on the busy Tel Aviv Ayalon (freeway) came to a halt - at 10am on 2nd May when the two-minute siren sounded across the country. It was to mark Yom HaShoah, when Israelis remember those that perished in the Holocaust.
Bar-Ilan University researchers have used 3D virtual modelling to piece back together the broken shell of an egg laid 2,600 years ago. It has resolved a Rabbinic dispute over the size of Temple-era eggs, providing evidence that they were similar in size to those laid by hens today.
Seven senior British Muslim scholars have just visited Israel. They laid wreaths at Yad Vashem, visited the Kotel, Al-Aqsa and villages on the Gaza border. The clergymen met senior Jewish and Christian religious leaders, as well as imams whose salaries are paid by the Jewish State.
Following Australia’s recognition of West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Australia has opened a Trade and Defense office in downtown Jerusalem. It will strengthen Australia's business ties with Israel in defense, education, high-tech and other areas.