Happy Independence Day, Israel! The State of Israel celebrates its 63rd year of independence this year, a day marked with jubilance and festivities. According to the Hebrew calendar and Israeli law, Yom Ha’atzmaut is celebrated this year on Tuesday, May 10 (the 6th day of the Hebrew month of Iyar). This day also marks 63 years of United States’ recognition of the State of Israel. The National Jewish Democratic Council congratulates Israel on 63 years, and sends wishes of peace and security for this upcoming year.
President Barack Obama sent his best wishes to the Israeli people. His full statement reads:
Sixty-three years ago, when Israel declared its independence, the dream of a state for the Jewish people in their historic homeland was finally realized. On that same day, the United States became the first country in the world to recognize the State of Israel. As Israelis celebrate their hard-won independence, it gives me great pleasure to extend the best wishes of the American people to the people of Israel and to honor their remarkable achievements over the past six decades. Our two nations share a unique and unbreakable bond of friendship that is anchored in common interests and shared values, and the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security. I have every confidence that the strong relationship between our countries will grow deeper with each passing year.
This is a period of profound change in the Middle East and North Africa, as people across the region courageously pursue the path of dignity and self-governance. Just as I know that Israel will always be one of our closest allies, I believe that the region can be more peaceful and prosperous when its people are able to fulfill their legitimate aspirations. We will continue our efforts with Israel and others in the region to achieve a comprehensive peace, including a two-state solution, and to working together toward a future of peace, security and dignity for the people of Israel and all the people of the region.
I offer my best wishes to President Peres, Prime Minister Netanyahu, and the people of Israel as they celebrate their 63rd Independence Day.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also released a statement to celebrate Israeli Independence Day:
On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to send best wishes to the people of Israel on your 63rd National Day this May 10 - a young nation, but a rich history that holds deep meaning for so many. Your achievements are a testament to your hardworking citizens, innovative economy, and commitment to democratic institutions. Israel has been a beacon of hope and freedom for so many around the world.
Sixty-three years ago the United States was the first country to recognize Israel’s independence, and that spirit of kinship continues to guide us today. Our two countries are united by a deep, unshakable friendship and bond. We are bound together by our shared values and history pursuing freedom, equality and democracy. And this relationship is deepening every day. Whether it’s our security partnerships or the expanding economic and trade collaborations - our work together is securing a brighter future for all our people.
As you celebrate your independence, the Middle East is experiencing rapid change. This is a moment of uncertainty, but also of opportunity. The security of Israel is - and will remain - a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy, and we will continue to strive for a comprehensive peace between Israel and all of its neighbors.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid congratulated Israel on celebrating another Independence Day:
I congratulate Israel as it celebrates another Independence Day - the 63rd anniversary of the modern state of Israel and the establishment of a Jewish state.
Southern Nevada, where I live, is home to a vibrant Jewish community. Nevada and its Jewish community have supported Israel for generations. Just minutes after independence was declared, the United States was the first nation to recognize Israel. We continue to stand firmly by its side.
We should never forget that Israel remains threatened by terrorist groups and governments that support terrorists. Yet the people of Israel never tire in their commitment to democratic principles and freedoms.
Today we affirm our commitment to never permit Israel’s existence as a free nation in the eternal land of the Jewish people to be threatened, and we will continue to celebrate many more anniversaries of Israel’s independence together.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi issued a statement while leading a bi-partisan delegation to Israel:
It is a privilege to be in Israel to mark the 63rd anniversary of this nation’s declaration of independence.
Israel’s history is a tale of prosperity, resilience, and perseverance; a story of courage and success in face of seemingly impossible odds. For 63 years, Israel has shone as a bright light of democracy and freedom dedicated to the core values of the Jewish people: to promote peace, to pursue justice, to seek the common good. As President John F. Kennedy once said: Israel is ‘the child of hope and the home of the brave.’
The friendship between the United States and Israel is founded on common principles - and it is because of those principles that Democrats and Republicans continue to speak with one voice on behalf of the Jewish state. Together, we pray for the day when Israeli families and children can live free from fear; when Israel can finally realize the dream of peace and security.
On this day, we join all Israelis in celebrating what many consider one of the greatest achievements of the 20th century: the establishment of the state of Israel. And we look forward to marking many more Israeli Independence Days in the years to come.
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