Here are some Israel facts or as I like to call it the Identity card of
my country Israel, which is located in the Middle East.
The area is the
crossroads between Europe, Africa and Asia. The whole area is also known
as the Land of Israel or the Holy Land.
The Seven Branch Menorah is the Emblem of the State of Israel
Some Facts about Israel
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Official Name: The State of Israel
Form of Rule: Parliamentary Democracy
Area: 22,072 square kilometers
Population: 7.8 million persons
Distribution by Religion: 75.6% Jews, 16.6% Muslim, 1.6% Christian
and 1.6% Druze, 0.40% non-Arab Christians and 3.9% unclassified by
Official Languages: Hebrew, Arabic
Israel Currency: New Israeli Shekel (NIS)
GDP per Person: $28,365
Quality of Life Classification: 15th place in world
International Dialing Code: 972
Internet Suffix: il
The Flag of the State of Israel and the Jewish People
The flag of Israel is composed of two blue stripes against a
white background, with a Magen David, blue Shield of David or hexagram
Israel’s National Anthem
The national anthem of the State of Israel is Hatikvah in English
the Hope. The lyrics were written by the poet, Naphtali Herz Imber
(1856–1909), and the melody is a Romanian folk song quoted by the Czech
composer Bedrich Smetena.
Hatikvah was chosen as the Zionist movement’s anthem and, upon
the establishment of the State of Israel, was accepted as the national
anthem. However, the song was only officially recognized by the Knesset
as Israel’s national anthem in 2004.
The Menorah, Emblem of the State
The emblem of the State of Israel is the seven branched menorah
or candelabrum with olive branches at both sides, and with the name
Israel appearing beneath.
The source of the Menorah is an engraving on the Arch of Titus in
Rome, depicting the victory march of the Roman commander Titus after he
crushed the Great Revolt of the Jews against the Romans and destroyed
the Temple in 70 CE.
The source of the olive branches is a prophecy of the prophet
Zechariah. The candelabrum of the Temple in Jerusalem engraved on the
Arch of Titus symbolizes not only the illustrious past of the people of
Israel, but also its defeat and the beginning of its exile.
So, the choice of this specific candelabrum not only linked the
new state to its illustrious past, it also brought the Menorah back from
its long exile, thus indirectly symbolizing the end of the Diaspora.
The Anthem of Israel Hatikvah - "The Hope"
Form of Rule in Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary democracy, headed by the
president, whose role is essentially symbolic and representative.
The country is, in fact, managed by three authorities: the
legislative authority, the Israeli Parliament or the Knesset, the
executive authority, the government, and the judiciary authority. The legislative authority in Israel is the Knesset (the name of
the parliament in Israel), which has 120 members chosen in general
elections once every four years.
The Knesset enacts laws, makes political decisions, chooses the
president and the government, and supervises the government’s activity.
The executive authority in Israel is the government. It is
responsible for executing the laws enacted by the Knesset and for the
proper governance of the State.
The prime minister is a Knesset member whom the president charged
with the role of forming the coalition government, and who formed a
government that gained the confidence of the Knesset.
Since the establishment of the state, no single party has enjoyed
an absolute majority in the Knesset. Therefore, all of Israel’s
governments have always been coalition governments.
The third authority in Israel is the judiciary, which is
responsible for maintaining law in the state. At the head of the legal
system stands the Supreme Court.
It hears appeals against judgments of the lower courts, and also
sits as a High Court of Justice for petitions submitted by civilians
against the State authorities. Besides the ordinary, or civilian, legal
system, Israel has courts which the law has bestowed with unique
authority in specific matters.
Among these courts are the Labor Court, the Military Court, and
the religious courts (Jewish, Muslim, Christian and Druze), which deal
with matters of personal status such as marriage and divorce.
The Knesset or Israeli Parliament standing proud on a hill in Jerusalem
Israel is today a developed country in a sector of the world with
a much diversified climate. Since the country is long from north to
south, you may see snow covered mountains on the north, especially Mt
Hermon on the Golan Heights; and after driving a few hours you encounter
the dry wilderness of the Negev Desert and much warmer weather.
Now you have the most important Israel Facts. Enjoy the visit to our modern country.
All courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
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