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The Chat of Israel
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Jerusalem, The Holy City
Tel Aviv, the big city
Big Israeli inventions
The Earth of Israel
Independence of Israel
Quite On Israel
The State of Israel
Information of Israel
History of Israel
Information of Israel

Teodoro Herzel
David Ben-Gurion
Itzhak Rabin
Golda Meir
Jaim Weizmann
Menajem Begin
Moshe Dayan
Ehud Olmert
Ariel Sharon
Shimon Peres
Ehud Barak
Biniamin Netaniahu
Eliezer Ben Iehuda

Jerusalem
Tel Aviv Iafo
Beer Sheva
Nazareth
Eilat
Haifa
Tiberias
Dead Sea
Information
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Last Contents
· 1: Ehud Olmert
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· 2: Iaakov Terner
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· 3: Biniamin Netaniahu
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· 4: Interesting information of Tel Aviv
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· 5: Information of Holon
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· 6: Jaim Weizmann
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· 7: Teodoro (Biniamin Zeev) Hertzel
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· 8: It allies it
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· 9: Itzjak Rabin
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· 10: The Presidency of Israel
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The most visited thing
· 1: Radioes of Israel
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· 2: Newspapers of Israel
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· 3: Anthem of Israel
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· 4: Alefbet Online
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· 5: History of Israel
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· 6: Jerusalem
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· 7: The Hebrew language
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· 8: Information of Jerusalem
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· 9: Quite On Israel
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· 10: The State of Israel
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Quite On Israel
Information of Israel


Quite on Israel, The Holy Land

Israel, ground of the Bible and historical homeland of the Jewish people, is placed in the Middle East, along the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea, being part of a terrestrial bridge between three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. In this ground, the Jewish people began to develop his distinctive religion and culture approximately 4.000 years ago; and in her it has preserved a permanent physical presence, for centuries like the sovereign state and in other times, under foreign domination.

I chatter and press hard in his form, the country is 470 km long, from north on south, and it includes approximately 135 km in his most wide point, between the Dead Sea and the Mediterranean coast. Israel limits with the Lebanon to the north, Syria to the North-East, Jordan to the east, Egypt to the Southwest and the Mediterranean Sea on the west.

In spite of his small size, Israel includes the different topographic and climatic characteristics of a continent. In the north the wooded heights of the Galilee are mixed by green and fertile vales; the dunes and carved grounds mark the coastal plain that borders on the coast of the Mediterranean; the hills in the center of Israel rise to the east, the rocky tops of the mountain ranges of Judea and Samaria in the center of the country descend abruptamente towards the subtropical Vale of the Jordan and the Dead Sea, the rock bottom of the ground. Mountainous deserts, spreading across the Néguev and the Aravá towards the south, end in the most north top of the Red Sea.

CLIMATE. The moderate climate of the country is characterized for being very sunny, with a rainy station between November and April. The annual precipitation fluctuates of the 500 to 750 mm in the north, to little more than 39 mm in the south end. The regional climatic conditions change greatly: warm and humid summers and benign and rainy winters in the coastal plain; dry summers and agreeably warm with winters moderately cold, rainy and with some light occasional snowfall in the regions of the hills. In the Vale of the Jordan the summers are dry and warm, and the agreeable winters; and in the south, with semi-arid conditions during the whole year, the days change between warm to warm and the nights are fresh.

IT WATERS DOWN. On having skimped the water in the region, intensive efforts are done to use the available thing to the maximum and to look for new possible resources. In the 0s, the sources of fresh water of the country were joined in an integrated national system, which central artery, the National Aqueduct, leads the water across a network of stations of extraction, of reservoirs, channels and tubes from the north and the center of the country up to the semi-arid south. Existing projects at present for the use of new resources include the sowing of clouds, the recycling of the wastes water and the desalination of the sea water.

FLORA AND FAUNA. The rich variety of plants and animals that it exists in Israel reflects both his geographical place and his topography and climate varied. More than 500 classes of birds, about 100 species of mammals and 90 of reptiles, and approximately 3.000 varieties of plants (of which 00 are natives of Israel) are inside his limits. Nearly 00 nature reserves and 65 national parks, which include almost 1.000 km2, have been established along the country, being in planning stage several hundreds of additional places.

History

The Temple of king Salomón BIBLICAL PERIOD (circa 3000 AEC-538 AEC). The Jewish history begins in the first half of the second millenium AEC, with the Patriarchs: Abraham, his son Isaac and his grandson Jacob. The famine began to spread, and this forced Jacob and his children - the ancestors of 12 tribes of Israel - to emigrate to Egypt, where his progeny was enslaved. Several centuries later, Cradle extracted his people of this country - of the slavery to the freedom - and guided them back to the Earth of Israel. For 40 years they wandered for the desert of the Sinai, where they were forged like nation and received the Law of Cradle, which includes Ten Orders, which form and content gave to the monotheistic faith of his ancestral patriarchs.

Under the command of Josué, the Israelite tribes conquered the ground, settled in her, joining especially in times of exterior threats, during the leadership of the called Judges. The monarchy was instituted under Saúl (c. 1020 ABC); his successor, David, unified the tribes and turned Jerusalem in the capital of the nation (circa 1000 AEC). The son of David, Salomón, transformed the kingdom into a flourishing commercial potency and constructed in Jerusalem the temple the only God of Israel. Archaeological remains attest that important urban centers of commerce were founded during his reign, including the fortified cities of Hatzor, Meguido and Guezer. After the Salomón death, the country split into two kingdoms: Israel (capital: Samaria) and Judá (capital: Jerusalem), which coexisted during two subsequent centuries governed by kings Jewish and exhorted by the Prophets towards the social justice and the observance of the Law.

The kingdom of Israel was invaded by the Assyrians (722 AEC) and his dispersed people (Ten Lost Tribes). Judá was conquered by the Babylonians (586 AEC), who destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem and exiled to most of the Jewish population Babylonia.

PERIODS OF SELF-GOVERNMENT (538 AEC-0 AEC). After the fall of the Babylonian empire in hands of the Persians (538 AEC), many Jews returned Judá, the Temple was reconstructed in Jerusalem and the Jewish life returned in the country. During four subsequent centuries (538-168 AEC) the Jews enjoyed to a great extent autonomy under the Persian and Hellenic dominations. The measurements taken later to suppress the cult and Jewish practices provoked the raising Macabeo (Hasmoneo) (166 AEC) that it brought like turned out the establishment of an independent kingdom that lasted approximately one century, under the kings of the dynasty hasmonea.

UNDER FOREIGN DOMAIN (0 AEC-1948). From the year 0 AEC from now on, the country debilitated by a civil war, happened to be more and more submitted to the Roman domain. In an attempt for be liberating, the Jews threw themselves to a series of insurrections, which 66 EC reached in the riot of the year. After four years of intermittent struggles, Rome submitted Judea, burning the Second Temple up to the foundations and exiling many of the Jews of the country (70 EC). The last resistance against Rome realized by about 1.000 Jews in the fortitude of Farmhouse and that concluded in the year 73, with the suicide in mass of his defenders, turned into the symbol of the determination of the Jewish people to be lived at large in its own ground.

For several centuries, under the Roman hegemony (70-313) and Byzantine (313-636), the Jewish community in the country kept on supporting and developing your own juridical, educational and cultural institutions. The Jewish laws, which deal with all the aspects of the life, were codified in the Mishná (IInd century) and they prepared in the Talmud (IIIrd to Vth centuries). These laws, some of which were modified later, they unify up to today the Jews observantes.

An attempt of the Jews of recapturing his national independence (the riot of Bar Kojba, 132 EC), resulted in the creation of an independent Jewish enclave in Judea, with Jerusalem as his capital. Three years later, the Romans won to Bar Kojba, and, into an effort to finish with the Jewish bonds with the country they changed the name of Jerusalem into that of Aelia Capitolina, and to the country they called it Palaestina.

From the VIIth century from now on, the country was governed successively by Arabs (636-1091), seléucidas (1091-1099), crossed (1099-1291), Mamelukes (1291-016), Ottoman Turks (017-1917) and the Britons (1918-1948). There were changes on the borders and the name of the country was changing in accordance with the caprices of the leader of shift. Several buildings constructed in the country by different conquerors testify the presence of these in this place.

Although his number diminished during the centuries of foreign occupation, a continuous Jewish presence was supported in the Earth, which was turning out to be reinforced time and again for Jews who were returning his ancestral homeland from the countries of his dispersion, flow that began taking importance in the middle of the XIXth century.

Centenary of the First Zionist Congress ZIONISM. The wish of returning some day to Zion, synonymous traditionally of Jerusalem and of Earth of Israel, has been the focus of the Jewish life in the diaspora for many centuries. At the end of the XIXth century the Zionism as national movement arose in answer to the continuous oppression and pursuit of the Jews in Eastern Europe and to the increasing disappointment of the formal emancipation in Western Europe, which neither put term to the discrimination it did not even produce the integration of the Jews to the societies of the countries in which they were living. In the First Zionist Congress (1897), summoned in Basel, Switzerland, for Teodoro Herzl, the Zionist movement was constituted like a political organization that calls to the comeback of the Jewish people the Earth of Israel and the renaissance of his national life in his ancestral homeland.

Thousands of Jews, inspired by the Zionist ideology, began to come to the country, then a part slightly inhabited and careless about the Ottoman Empire. These first pioneers dessicated marshes, planted trees on the hillsides of arid hills, established industries and raised villages and cities. They founded institutions and community services and the Hebrew language limited for the long time to the literature and to the liturgy, began to re-live like language of daily use.

Recognizing "the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine (Earth of Israel)" y "the bases to re-constitute his National Hearth in this country," the League of the Nations (1922) granted to Great Britain an order with the responsibility of "setting to the country in political, administrative and economic conditions that assure the establishment of a Jewish National Hearth."

A few months later, Great Britain established the Arab Emirate of Transjordania in three quarters of the territory, to the east of the Rio Jordan (today the Kingdom Hashemita of Jordan), leaving only the western part for the development of the Jewish National Hearth. Being opposed to the establishment, although it was in this small area, of the Jewish State, extremist Arab leaders initiated attacks against the Jewish community, as well as against Arab individuals that Arab - Jewish woman were advocating the coexistence. The restrictions imposed by the Englishmen on the immigration and on the Jewish establishment did not calm the Arab militants, and the violence sprouts continued until the beginning of the Second World war.

At the end of the war, the restrictions to the Jewish immigration to the Earth of Israel were not annulled, in spite of the immediate need to find a refuge for those that had managed to escape to the annihilation of the Jewish communities, in which approximately 6 million Jews, including 1,5 million children, were murdered. To get over to the unmigratory restrictions imposed by Great Britain, the Jewish community in the country, together with the world judeidad, it mobilized his resources and organized a network of "illegal" immigration, known as Aliá Bet, bringing to the country about 85.000 survivor of Holocaust.

Unable to reconcile the increasing Arab opposition to the Jewish immigration and the establishment with the persistent Jewish demand of annulling the restrictions at the entry in the country, Great Britain took the problem to the United Nations. The General Assembly of the UNO approved, on November 29, 1947, the establishment of two states in the area (to the west of the river Jordan), one Jew and another Arab. The Jews accepted the division plan, the Arabs pushed it back.

THE STATE. With the term of the British Order (May 14, 1948), the people proclaimed the establishment of the State of Israel. Less than 24 hours later, the armies of five Arab countries invaded the new state, throwing what happened to be the War of the Independence of Israel, which fought in intermittent form during more than one year. About July, 1949, there were signed separately with all the nearby Arab countries agreements of armistice, based on the lines of cessation of fire.

In the Declaration of the Establishment of the State, Israel extends his "hand to all the nearby states and to his villages, in an offer of peace and of good neighborhood." It is called, repeated for successive firstly the ministers of Israel, it was ignored persistently or it pushed back. The attacks of the Arab terror against the centers of Israeli population continued, with the support and the stimulus of the Arab states, which also implanted an economic and diplomatic boycott, blocked the international seaways to the Israeli navigation and provoked entire wars: in 1956 and 1967, Israel threw preventive attacks in answer to deliberate provocations; in 1973, Israel had to repel entire attacks thrown in his against simultaneously for the nearby Arab states in two fronts; and, in 1982, it acted against the terrorist bases of the PLO (Organization of Liberation of Palestine) in the south of the Lebanon, where from they were throwing attacks against the civil population of the North Galilee.

The rejection circle to called of peace of Israel was broken by the arrival to Jerusalem of the Egyptian president Anwar Sadat (November, 1977), at the invitation of the prime minister Menajem Beguin. The visit drove to negotiations of peace that concluded in the signature of the Treaty of Peace between Israel and Egypt (March 26, 1979) and the formulation of the Agreements of Camp David that were including, between other things, dispositions for the peace in the Middle East and a frame for the self-government of the Palestinians in Judea, Samaria and Gaza.

October 30, 1991 was fixed the achievement of a conference of peace for the Middle East in Madrid, which communicated representatives of Israel, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and of the Palestinians. The formal meetings were continued by bilateral negotiations between the parts and by multilateral conversations that treated about regional problems.

A significant progress was the Declaration of Beginning (September, 1993) signed by Israel and the PLO (like representative of the Palestinian people) that delineates the arrangements for the Palestinians in the Western Margin and Gaza. Consistently, the self-government was implemented in Gaza and Jericho (1994), and with the signature of the Temporary Agreement (1995) it spread to additional areas in the Western Margin.

In January, 1997 Israel and the AP signed the Protocol of Hebrón and Israel it re-opened in the area; in October, 1998 they signed the Memorandum of the Rio Wye and the first phase of the redeployment was implemented by Israel. In September, 1999 Israel and the PLO signed the Memorandum of Sharm El-Sheikh. Since then israel has carried out new redeployments, has liberated prisoners, has opened the sure route of the south and has resumed the Conversations for the Permanent Status.

Regrettably, the Summit of Camp David in July, 2000 failed due to the rejection on the part of the Palestinians to accept proposals of big scope and without precedents destined to solve the conflict, which they had been supported by the USA.

An additional conciliation in the region was obtained when Israel and Jordan put term to the state of war of 46 years between both (July, 1994), continued by an agreement of peace (October, 1994), which established full diplomatic relations between both countries. The impulse in the peace process opened the way for the enlargement of the contacts and relations with other Arab countries.


The State


The Menorá: official shield of the State of Israel La Declaración of the Establishment of the State of Israel (May 14, 1948), constitutes the Creed of the nation, stipulating: "The State of Israel... will support a finished equality of social and political rights for all the citizens, without difference of creed, race or sex; it will guarantee the freedom of religion, conscience, language and culture; it will safeguard Santos Lugares of all the religions; it will be faithful at the beginning of the Letter of the United Nations."

Israel is a parliamentary democracy whose three branches: the Executive power, the Legislative one and the Judicial one, they work based on the beginning of the separation of powers, which assures the control and balance inside the system.

THE PRESIDENT, whose functions are principally ceremonial and formal, symbolizes the unit of the State. It is elect for the Knéset (Parliament of Israel) for only one period of seven years, the President signs the laws, reprieves prisoners and exchanges judgments for the recommendation of the Minister of Justice and accepts the credentials of the foreign envoys.

THE KNESET, the legislative body, is a single-chamber parliament of 120 members that operates in plenary meetings and across 0 permanent commissions. The general debates and the votings on politics and governmental activities, as well as on legislative propositions presented by the government or by means of projects deprived of the members, they are carried out in plenary meetings. To turn into law, every project must spend three readings in the Knéset. The President, the Prime minister, the president of the Knéset and the responsible minister sign the law when this one is approved. The debates of the Knéset are realized in Hebrew; the Arab members and Druzes can go to the Chamber in Arab (another official language of Israel), there being simultaneous translation in both languages.

The members of the Knéset, who represent a wide scale of the political parties, are chosen every four years in national elections, and the whole country constitutes only one electoral district. The number of seats assigned to every party in the Knéset is proportional to his percentage in the whole of the national voting.

THE GOVERNMENT (executive power) is responsible before the Knéset and subordinated to his confidence. His political powers are very wide with regard to the principal aspects of the life of the country. From the next elections to the Knéset, the President will impose on a member of the Knéset the responsibility of forming government and of presenting, in a period of 28 days, the ministers' list to be approved by the Knéset; half of the ministers owes parliamentarians. A portfolio is assigned to most of the ministers and they preside at a department; others serve without portfolio, but it is possible to entrust them the responsibility for special projects. The prime minister can serve also like the minister without portfolio.

All the governments, from 1948, have based on a coalition of several parties, since, up to the date, no party has received any more than half of 120 seats of the Knéset. The government serves for a period of four years, although this term can be shy for the resignation or death of the prime minister, or for a vote of suspicion in the Knéset.

THE JUDICIAL POWER is completely independent from the executive and from the legislative one; the judges are named by the President in accordance with the recommendation of a public commission of appointments, and they serve up to his retirement mandatorio at the age of 70 years. The judicial system consists of three courts levels: the courts of Magistrate, which deal with civil and criminal cases of minor instance; the courts of District, which treat all the criminal and civil cases that are not of the competition of the low courts; and the Supreme Court, with national jurisdiction, which acts like Top Court of Appeals and like High Court of Justice, for requests expressed by persons who look for compensation of a public authority.

Special Spanish Parliament deals with specific matters like infractions of traffic, labor disputes, juvenile delinquency and minor demands. The jurisdiction on matters of personal status (weddings and divorces) is awarded to the courts of the diverse religious communities.

As soon as the state was established, the adopted legal body consisted already of laws in validity during the British Order (1922-48), any time they were agreeing with the arranged in the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel. Since then new laws have been promulgated and some old women have been checked to adapt them to the current situations. The functioning of the principal institutions of the state is regulated by a series of Basic Laws.

To all the citizens there are guaranteed all the democratic and human rights, which go from the freedom of expression, freedom of religion, universal vote and equality before the law. The freedom of the press, of political affiliation, of work, of strike and of declaration they are incorporated in the laws of Israel.

THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT includes 63 municipalities and 146 local councils. The town and local councils are elect on the base of a proportional representation: the mayors and chiefs of local councils are elect for direct vote. The chiefs of 53 regional councils (each of which understands several small establishments) are chosen of between the presidents of the committees of every rural and urban community of the region.

THE FORCES OF DEFENSE OF ISRAEL (FDI) were organized to the beginning of the War of Independence of 1948. They are formed by the conscription, a service of reservations and military men of career. All the suitable men and women are recruited 18 years after age, the men for a period of three years and the women, for twenty-one months; the men are subject to the reservations service up to 51 years, the women, up to the 24. The individuals accepted by the institutions of higher education in those disciplines that are needed by the FDI (medicine, infirmary, pedagogics, engineering, etc.) they can postpone his conscription and serve in the FDI in his profession, for a period from 3 to 5 years, after his graduation. Being provided with a small permanent army, the FDI is based principally on the reservations, which are called regularly to training and to service. This way, the nation and the army are, essentially, a unit, in which there are exchanged in fact the persons who take or not uniform.

The FDI has answered also to the demands of the society, assuming a functions variety socionacionales and the achievement of a wide scale of projects centred on areas of essential need in the given moment.

Founded like the Jewish state, the society of Israel spends 6 million inhabitants, forming a mosaic of different religions, cultures and social traditions. The citizenship is determined by birth, residence or naturalization; the citizens who want to support a double nationality can do it.

The religious affiliation and practice are a matter of personal election, being guaranteed the cults freedom for the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel. Nowadays, the population of the country is constituted by 77,8 % of Jews, 0,2 % Moslem, 2,1 % Christian (mostly Arabs) and a 1,7 % Druzes; 3,2 % is not classified by religion. Inside this frame pluralista, the diverse communities support their own religious, educational, cultural institutions and of charity. The religious courts of every community have absolute jurisdiction in all the matters that treat about the personal status of his members. Each of the multiple holy places of the country is administered by its own religious authority, being guaranteed by law the protection from the desecration and the violation of the same ones, as well as the free access to they.

The official day of rest of Israel is Saturday, the shabat. The Muslims observe his day of rest on Friday, and the Christians, on Sunday.

From the establishment of the state (1948), the Jewish population has grown of 650.000 to almost five million souls, duplicating his population in his first four years with the massive immigration of the survivors of the European Holocaust and of refugees of the Arab countries. Since then the Jews have kept on coming, in variable quantities, so much from the countries of oppression as from the free world. In two important efforts (1984, 1991) virtually the whole Jewish community of Ethiopia, which as he believes was established there in the times of king Salomón, congregated in Israel. Another big unmigratory wave, which began in 1989, was composed by more than one million Jews of the ex-Soviet Union.

During the "crucible of the diasporas", the Jews brought with them the traditions of their own communities, as well as aspects of the culture that was prevailing in the countries in which they lived during generations. This way, the Jewish population of Israel, although joined by a common faith and a history, it is characterized by a diversity of approaches and life styles that they create a society who is partially western, partially European orientally, partially mesoriental, but principally Israeli.

Not Jewish communities of Israel, principally Arab, represent more than 22 % of the population and have increased of 06.000 persons in 1949 to more than 1,4 million nowadays. His participation in the democratic processes of the country there are a testimony of his physical affiliation, although the development of the relations between Jews and Israeli Arabs has turned out to be hindered by differences of language, religion and life style, as well as in the decades of the conflict Arab - Israeli. Both populations live through one along with other one, with contacts at economic, municipal and political level, but with few social interaction.

Vida Urbana and Rural

National exhibition of stamps, Tel Aviv 1983 Close to 91 porciento of the population of Israel lives in urban centers. Some of them are located on ancient places and take the original names, like Jerusalem, Beer Sheva, Nazareth, Ashkelón, Acco, Safed and Tiberíades whose old quarters are part now of the new cities in expansion. Others arose from peoples that were founded before the independence, including to Jedera, Petaj-Tikva, Netania and Rejovot. Urban centers were established in the first years of the existence of the state, preferentially in not inhabited areas, to place the increasing population.

The urban building is constructed principally of stone, blocks of concrete and stucco. His style changes from restored traces of last centuries and housings constructed to lodge the population in the prestate times, up to local projects hurriedly erected to lodge to the masses that came with the establishment of the state, and the residential, commercial and institutional buildings of last decades, which reflect the effect of the modern planning. Most of the residential areas are separated from the commercial and industrial districts with extensive parks and numerous squares of games placed inside the limits of the city.

Four principal cities are: Tel Aviv, axis of the industrial, commercial, financial and cultural life of the country, founded (1909) as the first Jewish city in the modern times; Haifa, important port on the Mediterranean and industrial center of the north area of Israel; Beer Sheva, the most populous city of the Center and South of the country, and Jerusalem, the capital.

JERUSALEM has been supported in the center of the national and spiritual life of the Jewish people since king David did capital of his kingdom approximately 3.000 years ago behind. From the destruction of Jerusalem and his Temple in the year 70 EC up to the restoration of the Jewish sovereignty in the country with the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, the city was controlled by successive foreign potency; the majority left his mark in her, but none turned it in his national capital.

Up to the second half of the XIXth century, Jerusalem was a walled city formed by four distinctive quarters: Jewish, Moslem, Armenian and Christian. From 180 from now on, the increasing Jewish population, who had kept a presence virtually continuous in the city throughout the centuries, happened to be majority and began constructing new quarters out of the walls, which formed the nucleus of the modern Jerusalem.

Under the British domain (1918-1948), Jerusalem it transformed of a careless and poor provincial city of the Ottoman empire in a flourishing metropolis. During this period many new quarters were established, reflecting each of them the character of the particular ethnic group that founded it, or for which was constructed.

The lines of armistice fixed at the end of the War of Independence of 1948-49 divided Jerusalem in two, controlling Jordan the oriental part, which was including the Old City, and Israel the western section, which happened to be the capital of the country. During the following 19 years, walls of concrete and barbed-wire fences separated both halves of the city.

Jerusalem was reunified in 1967 like result of a war in which Jordan tried to take possession of the western sector. Nowadays it is the biggest city of Israel, with more than 658.000 inhabitants. It is a city that looks simultaneously both at his past and at his future, restoring ancient places, improving the infrastructure and constructing new quarters; it is the capital of Israel, here there is the residence of the president, the Knéset (parliament of Israel), the Supreme Court and the departments of government; it is a city of diverse populations - Jews and Arabs, observantes religious and lay, oriental and western; it is a city in which the arts bloom inside an active cultural life that is so much international in his action sphere, as singularly Israeli.

Many sacred places for three principal monotheistic religions are located in Jerusalem: the remaining Western, last Wall of the Second Temple and focus of the prayers and source of inspiration for the Jews in Israel and in the whole world; the Dome of the Rock, which marks the traditional place of the ascent of the prophet Mahoma to the sky; the mosque of The Aksa, considered to be the third sacred place of the Islam after Mecca and Medina; the Garden of Gethsemane, the Church of the Holy Tomb, the Painful Route and other Christian places related to the life and death of Jesus de Nazaret - to mention only to some. Almost two million visitors who flood Jerusalem every year come to appreciate his good supported historical places and holy places, and to enjoy the aspects of his multiethnic and multicultural character.

About 9 % of the population lives in the rural areas, having his hearth in the kibbutz or in the moshav, through agricultural establishments that were developed at the beginning of the XXth century, or in some of many towns of diverse sizes that exist in the country.

The kibbutz was established like a socioeconomic unit in which the property and the means of production are of communal property and the decisions are taken by the General Assembly of his members. The kibbutz covers the needs of his members, demanding at the same time responsibility and participation in the community from them. Having covered a long way from his avant-garde beginning, when the base of his economy was the agriculture, the kibbutz thinks about how today to diversify his economic branches, expanding them to several types of industry and services. Although the kibutzim constitute only 2,0 % of the population of the country (in about 268 kibutzim), his contribution to the economy of the country exceeds in the very much above mentioned proportion. They work close to 38 % of the cultivation in fresh air of the country and manufacture about 8,4 % of the industrial production (excluding the diamonds). Tourist services and others, like being lounges and shops of direct sale, of the factory to the consumer, have transformed partly important of the economy of the kibbutz.

The kibbutz, which differed in his role in the establishment and development of the state, is looking today for ways to face to the challenges of the modern life in this technological age, trying to support his frame igualitarista originally. Although these adjustments have demanded changes of long scope, one hopes that his capacity of adaptation and adjustment there should be the key of his survival.

The moshav is an agricultural establishment in which every family supports its own farm and hearth. Originally, the cooperation was spreading to the acquisition, the marketing and granting of community services; nowadays the farmers of the moshav have preferred to be more independent economically. Approximately 452 moshavim, with an average of 0 families each one, that they constitute close to 3,2 % of the population of Israel, provide a big part of the agricultural product.

The villages (without including the community establishments) are inhabited principally by Arabs and Druzes, representing about 3,0 % of the population of Israel. The houses and the ground are of private ownership, and the farmers cultivate and mercadean his harvests in individual form. In the last years, with the expansion of the villages and the step to a more mechanized agriculture, more people are employed at the local light industry or at the rural and urban centers of the outskirts.

Close to half of 170.000 Bedouin Arabs they are already not nómades and they live in permanent establishments. Others continue with his traditional life style, although most of them remain in the same residence place.

Education

All the Israelis, from the children in preschool age up to the age biggest, benefit from a wide variety of educational programs.

The assistance to the school is obligatory from 5 years of age (infantile garden) up to the 16 and optional up to the 18 3 and 4-year-old Almost all the children of age are present at some type of preschool frame, in spite of being neither obligatory nor free.

The school system is based on the constant need to absorb and to integrate new immigrants and to educate children of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds - Jewish, Arab and Druzes, observantes religious and lay. For such a reason, the schools are divided in: state schools, at which most of the children are present; religious state schools, which put emphasis on the Jewish studies, the tradition and the religious observance; Arab schools and drusas, that they teach in Arab and put special emphasis on the history, tradition and Arab culture and drusa; and private schools, which work under diverse religious and international auspices. At the level of the secondary school, the pupils can choose an academic, technological, agricultural or military frame. Persons with special educational needs are integrated in accordance with his skills and impediments in the system of regular education, with additional assistance, or in separated institutions.

Every year chooses a special topic of national importance to be taught in depth, with the intention of reinforcing in the pupils the comprehension and appreciation of such values like the democracy, the environmental preservation, the Hebrew language, the peace and others.

The administration and the financing of the educational system is shared by the Department of Education, the Department of Sciences, Culture and Sports, and the municipalities. The departments are responsible for the programs of studies, the educational norms, the teachers' training, the supervision of the teaching personnel and the construction of schools, while the local authorities devote themselves to the maintenance of the schools and the acquisition of team and resources.

THE HIGHER EDUCATION plays a central role in the social and economic development of the country. Nowadays, nearly 202.000 students register annually in the institutions of top studies of Israel, assisting their 56 % to universities, about 28 % to diverse academies and 16 % takes part in courses across the Open university. In eight universities of Israel a wide scale of programs is offered in the field of the sciences and humanities education - from graduate's grade up to levels post doctoral - while the academies offer academic courses and training specializing in areas as teaching in primary schools, music, art, design of fashions and physical education. In several institutions there exist other frames of study tending to the securing of a vocational diploma.

ADULT EDUCATION. Tens thousands of adults take part in educational, some programs to improve his capacities and basic skills, many other to extend his professional training, to raise his studies level and to extend his intellectual curiosity. For new immigrants, ulpanim special they offer intensive courses of Hebrew language, in general of five months of duration, in which the newly arrived persons acquire a knowledge sufficient for the daily communication.

Health

A better ambience The extensive medical network of Israel and the high proportion medical / patient they are reflected in the low valuation of infant mortality (5,4 for every thousand living births) and the high expectations of life (80,4 for women, 76,6 for men). The training at western level for the medical professions is offered in the schools of medicine, odontology, pharmacology, infirmary and physical rehabilitation.

The law of National Insurance of Health, (in effect from January, 1995) provides with a basket standard of medical services, which includes the hospitalization, for all the residents of Israel. The premiums of the insurance of health are gathered by the Institute of National Insurance, which transfers the funds to four organizations that provide the medical services in the country.

The Department of Health is responsible for all the medical services of the country; it controls the medical levels in all the limits of Israel; it grants licenses to the medical personnel and supervises the planning and hospitals construction. The Department also acts like a public organism in the whole context of the environmental and preventive medicine.

The medical services are granted in 327 general and specializing hospitals (with about 37.400 beds), as well as across a network of ambulatory clinics, centers of attention for the mother and the child, houses of rest, institutions of rehabilitation and school programs of health that include the dental care. The facilities and the medical services are provided by the Department of Health, the big municipalities, institutions deprived without ends of lucre and funds of medical insurance.

Magen David Adom (Red Shield of David), who corresponds to the Red Cross or Medialuna Roja in other countries, offers emergency services. It provides the public with services of ambulance, outside broadcast units of intensive care and emergency treatments at stations of the first help in the whole country; it directs also a blood banks network.

In addition to the contribution of Israel to the investigation of the cancer, the immunology and the cardiology, impressive progresses have been done also in cerebral, orthopedic and plastic surgery, as well as in the victims' burns treatment. Israel has redeemed also an important role in the development of the medical technology, including systems of diagnosis and computarizados alertness, pacemaker and other devices to save lives and to mitigate pains.

Social services

"... Each one will Sit down under his vine and under his fig tree, and There will not be the one who intimidates them..." Miqueas 4:4

In order to improve the well-being of the population, putting emphasis in the weakest elements of the society, Israel has promulgated a wide legislation and has established an extensive network of programs of social work and of Community Services along the whole country.

The care of the elders, the assistance to families unipaternales, you programme for the childhood and the youth, agencies of adoption, as well as the prevention and the treatment of the alcoholism and the drogradicción, there constitute a big part of the services that are granted to the individual and to the family. The corrective services include frames of conditional freedom for adults and young people, special programs for those that leave the school, and services of boarding school and of observation for problematic young people. Workshops protected commercially and some of the services are an employment consultancy of rehabilitation that handicapped persons offer themselves for persons. The persons mentally simple-minded receive attention across diverse residential programs based on the community.

The Schools of Social work in the universities provide training for graduated and postgraduated, combining the theoretical studies with work in the area. Special courses for personnel that works with children and for assistants of the social service as well as a training during the work for the social workers, are given along the whole country.

THE INSTITUTE OF NATIONAL INSURANCE provides all the residents of Israel with a wide scale of benefits like being: a supplementary payment to the families or individuals whose revenue is below certain minimum; allocations for children, subsidies for unemployment, for invalidity, benefits for survival, oldage pensions, benefits of maternity (including the payment for three months of maternal license) and the long-term care of all the biggest persons who need daily assistance.

The Project Renewal, tackled at the end of the decade of 1970, is cheered up by the desire to rehabilitate the disadvantageous areas. Under the guidance of the government and the municipal authorities, and with the active participation of almost 100 Jewish communities of the exterior - of which each one is "connected" by a specific locality - the project has managed to expand and improve the social and educational infrastructure, as well as motivate the residents to assume a major responsibility for their own well-being.

VOLUNTARY ORGANIZATIONS (about 250), comprise almost a third of the citizens of Israel, from adolescents up to elders, they are dedicated to a variety of voluntary activities in the fields of health, education, rehabilitation of the incapacitated ones, well-being of the soldiers, ecological conservation, the arts, etc... Some organizations provide direct community services - from day nursery schools up to programs for the elders - while others occupy of problems social or relating to a group or locality specifics.


Economy

Centenary of the industry: computers in industry The Gross national product (GNP) of Israel in 2000, was of about U$S 17.700 per cápita, locating it between the most developed countries of the world. In the years 1991-96, Israel achieved one of the biggest indexes in the GNP (6 % of average) of the developed world. This index lowered 2 % in 1998, but it promoted 5,9 % in 2000. In the last trimester of 2000 there was a decrease in the growth due to the deterioration in the safety conditions and the instability in the sector of high technology in the world. In fact, the most notable economic achievement of the country is the index of this growth during 52 years of his existence, which it has had to face important challenges; the mantención of his national safety, which now needs close to ten porciento of the GNP; the absorption of numerous immigrants, the meaning of life of the Jewish state, the establishment of a modern structure than of answer to the requirements of an economic growth and the provision of public services of high level.

The price of this impressive growth has always been a deficit in the balance of payments, consequence of the existing breach between the imports and the exports of goods and services. In 2000, the whole of the imports reached the U$S 57,4 billions and the whole of exports reached U$S 49,4 billions, being the deficit of U$S 8 billions. Other current challenges include the struggle for the containment of the inflation, which has reduced from 445 porciento in 1984 to 0 porciento in 2000 and the attainment of enormous foreign investments for poveer I work and to fight this way against the unemployment, result, between others, of the renewal of the immigration in mass (more than one million from 1989).

AGRICULTURE. Israel has turned into the world leader of an agriculture of high quality and yield, like result of the narrow interaction between farmers and investigators that cooperate in the development and implementation of sophisticated methods in all the branches of the agriculture.

The machinery and the electronic team designed and made of the country, has a wide application in all the agricultural activities, from the irrigation and the harvest up to the milking and the packing.

On having used the maximum of the scarce waters and the working ground, Israel produces more food than he needs for his consumption. There matters principally grains, meat, tea, coffee, rice and sugar while his exports are much major: roses of long stem, branches of carnations, melons, kiwis, strawberries (strawberries), tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, avocados (avocado pears) between the most successful, especially on the markets of Europe and America in the cold months of winter.

IT MANAGES. The industrial sector is dynamic and extensively diversified. In last two decades, the percentage of the industrial production that was exported, has increased in constant form, spending nowadays 50 %, what represents 92 % porciento of the U$S 31,4 billion exports of goods.

Lacking in most of matter prime basic, but provided of a labor force of high quality, the Israeli industry has concentrated on the manufacture of products of a high aggregate value, based on the scientific creativity and the innovation técnológica. Big advances on a global scale have done to themselves in the fields of the medical electronics, agrotecnología, telecommunications, chemicals of high value, computing - hardware and software - food processing and solar energy. Also, the industry of the carved one and polished of diamonds - the biggest of the world - exported in 2000 U$S 7,9 billions in gems.

In 2000, close to 4,2 % of the GDP it is invested in the research and development (IyD) with civil ends, along with the industrialized countries. The IyD activities are carried out in the universities, government and public institutions of investigation; medical centers and military companies, as well as for the private enterprises.

EXTERIOR COMMERCE. One trades with the countries of five continents. Close to 46 % of the imports and 30 % of the exports a free trade agreement is carried out by the European Union (EU) with which Israel coordinated (1975). A similar agreement informed in 1995, (1985) was signed with the United States, which commerce with Israel represents 19 % of the imports and 37 % of his exports.

TOURISM. About 2,4 million persons of all parts of the world visited Israel in 2000, attracted by his places arqueológocos and religious, his highly developed tourist facilities and his beautiful beaches on the Mediterranean, the Dead Sea and the Red Sea, as also those who surround the lake Kinéret (Mar de Galilea). Close to 54 % of this tourist movement it comes from Europe, 28 % of the Americas and 10 % of the Asia.

IT COINS. The monetary unit is the shékel (that splits into 100 agorot), which was known like a weight unit to carry payments out in gold and silver in the second millenium AEC. The Bible reports that Abraham's serf approached Cardigan, along with the water source, with "a golden earring that was weighing way shékel and two bracelets that were weighing ten" (Genesis 24:22).

I WORK AND USE. A wide legislation exists for the protection and the well-being of the workpeople. Although the conditions for the workpeople in the diverse economic sectors of Israel are fixed by agreements between the government, the unions and the employers, the requests mínicos are stipulated by law, including a maximum of 47 weekly hours of work, the compensation for overtime and I am employed at holiday, the annual holidays and a license he pays in case of illness, as well as the payment for dismissal and programs of retirement (retirement).

The Histadrut (General Confederacy of the Work, founded in 1920), organization roof of the unions of Isarel, is provided nowadays with about 700.000 members, represents to all the economic sectors as well as to the liberal professions. It supports a wide network of social and cultural services for his members. As proprietress of many industrial enterprises the Histadrut is also a big employer.

Culture and Recreation

The Bible Schocken, S.Germamy, ca.1290 Four thousand years of Jewish patrimony, a century of political Zionism and five decades of the modern state has contributed to the development of an Israeli culture that reflects international elements while it strains for achieving a proper and authentic identity. The cultural expression across the arts in Israel is so changed like the same people, with activities for every taste, and it offers a professional talent of international level together with valuable opportunities for artists who want to come to the top and for fans.

THE PEOPLE OF THE BOOK. A basic fact for the development of the literature in the country has been the renaissance of the Hebrew language - one century ago - for his daily use and like an expressive literary language. The writers and poets treat with largeness images and local facts as well as universal topics and reflect the variable nature of the worries of the country and the development of his complex and many-sided society. Nearly 2.500 qualifications are published annually, which, along with the reprints of classic works and the imported books, can be found in many bookstores in every village and city. About 1.000 libraries facilitate books and reference services, including several ambulant libraries that serve to the most remote areas. The International Fair of the Book, which is realized every two years, attracts thousands of visitors to Jerusalem, and, every spring, the Week of the Hebrew Book turns squares and parks on crowded books markets.

VISUAL ARTS. The contemporary painting and the sculpture, which reflect international tendencies, are influenced also by the specific temperament and Israeli scenery. The art in all his forms enjoys a wide exhibition in the museums and the multiple art galleries of the whole country. The old quarters of Jerusalem, Yafo and Safed have been restored like artists' quarters and the village artists' of Ein Hod is sheltered in the Mounts of Carmel, close to Haifa, for whom they look for the art in a rural ambience.

Several important symphonic bands, including worldwide famous Philharmonic Band of Israel, diverse choirs, a company of opera and tens sets of camera appear in the whole country. Professional, as well as joint groups of dance of folkloric dances, hearings appear regularly before enthusiasts. Habimá, the national company of theater, several municipal theaters and diverse minor, professional groups of drama and of fans mounts from classic and musical works up to the most recent works of Israeli playwrights. The increasing movie industry has begun competing in the international scene.

The singing is integral part of the everyday life, and the Israeli songs are intoned regularly in public and private meetings, and they compete in international festivals. The popular folkloric songs have reached a deep-rooted and distinctive style based on melodies of the diverse ethnic groups combined with letters in Hebrew. Many of them generated the creation of folkloric dances that constitute an activity that delights extensively the Israelis, from adolescents to major, in the whole country.

ARCHAEOLOGY. The bond between the past and the present of the country materializes in about 3.500 archaeological places, which represent thousands of years of history. Finds that confirm the long connection of the Jewish people with the Earth of Israel include the Salomón stables in Meguido, houses of the Israelite period in David's City (Jerusalem), ritual baths in Farmhouse, numerous synagogs to everything long of the country, and the Rolls of the Dead Sea, between which there is the most ancient copy of Isaías's Book in still legible Hebrew writing. The excavations have revealed also the traces of other civilizations that left his trace in the ground throughout the centuries. All the discoveries are registered and the historical places are carefully preserved and indicated, both for visitors and for students.

MUSEUMS. Nearly 170 museums, which cover topics from the archaeology to the zoology, are in the big and small cities and in the kibutzim of the whole country, which are visited by more than eight million persons a year. The Museum Israel, national museum of the country, has pavilions dedicated to the archaeology, to the Jewish patrimony, paintings of impressionists and of Israeli artists, as well as to special collections like the Rolls of the Dead Sea. Yad Vashem, the National Authority for the Memory of the Heroes and Martyrs of the Holocaust, includes a Historical museum that documents the Holocaust. Others, including the Museum Haaretz, exhibit specific samples regarding the development of the country, from the prehistory from now on. Only one in his conception, the Museum of the Diaspora (Beit Hatefutzot), plans the history of the Jewish communities in the world by means of mock-ups, dioramas, and audio-visual exhibitions.

MASS MEDIA. The tradition of a free press, integral part of the Israeli democracy, is evident in the publication of seven newspapers in Hebrew and eleven in other languages, including the Arab, as well as a big newspapers quantity on very different and varied topics. Two television stations, cable television and for satellite (local channels and tens of the whole world) and several radial broadcasting stations present a wide variety of programs including news, interviews, panels of discussion, games and contests, movies and entertainment, in addition to educational and cultural programs. The programming in Arab is faced to the interests of the Arab population, and that one in other languages to the needs of groups of immigrants and tourists. Regularly programs are transmitted in short wave for radioescuchas of the exterior.

13th Macabiada, 1989 SPORTS. The soccer and the básquetbol are the most popular sports in Israel and the swimming, the tennis, the vóleibol, the gymnastics, the athletics of track and field, and followers of year are gaining other activities in year. The home teams organize regularly league competitions before big multitudes of loyal fans, and chosen nationals represent to the country in international championships.

The principal sports organizations of Israel - Macabi, Betar, Hapoel and Elitzur - sponsor home teams in diverse sports as well as juvenile pictures in which the future champions of the country train. Jewish athletes of the whole world come to Israel to compete in the Macabiadas and the Games of Hapoel, which are carried out every four years.

Special events as the career annual marathon about the Lake Kinéret (Mar de Galilea) and his passage by swimming, as well as the March of Jerusalem, attract thousands of participants every year. The camps and the walks are more and more popular, registering annually about 6,5 million visits in the numerous parks and nature reserves of Israel. For those who like the adventures, walks are organized by difficult routes in some of the most spectacular sceneries of the world, expeditions of diving to explore the magnificent coral reefs in the Gulf of Eil


Source: MFA - Foreign Office of Israel








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