When is Independence Day *?
Yom Ha'atzma'ut, Israeli Independence Day, commemorates the declaration of independence of Israel in 1948.
It falls on the 5th day of the Jewish lunar month Iyyar.
The Gregorian date for the day in which Israel independence was proclaimed is May 14th, 1948 when David ben Gurion publicly read the Proclamation of the establishment of the State of Israel, and the end of the British Mandate in Israel.
When the 5th of Iyar falls on a Friday or Saturday, as in 2005, the official celebration may be moved to the preceding Thursday.
An official ceremony is held every year on Mount Herzl on the eve of Yom Ha'atzma'ut. The ceremony include speeches from senior Israeli officials, an artistic part, 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).
Each year, dozens of Israeli citizens who contributed to the state, are selected to light the beacons.
*Like other Jewish holidays, Yom Ha'atzma'ut will begin at sundown on the previous day.