Every year, in a moving but emotionally difficult transition, Israel first remembers its fallen soldiers and victims of terror, then celebrates its independence. Monday evening, Israeli President Shimon Peres initiated Remembrance Day by lighting a memorial torch at the Western Wall. He was joined by war widow Tziona Netanel, whose husband, Capt. Yonatan Netanel, 26, was killed by ‘friendly fire’ in the Gaza Strip in January. (Photo above)
A second annual torch lighting occurred Tuesday night, at Mount Herzl National Cemetery; this ceremony traditionally concludes Remembrance Day and signals the onset of the Independence Day celebration. Yom Atzmaut Sameach, Happy 61st Birthday, Israel! Also, happy 100th birthday to Tel Aviv!