The State of Israel
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Copyright © 1998-2011 Roger A. Lee and History Guy Media; Last Modified: 04.30.11
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Israel, the world's only Jewish nation, is located in the Middle East. Israel has literally been in a state of war since her declaration of independence on May 14, 1948. On that date, the Jewish community in what was then known as British Mandated Palestine, declared independence as the State of Israel. Active combat against local Arab Palestinians had begun earlier, and upon the independence declaration, six neighboring Arab states invaded the newly born Israeli nation.
Independence: May 14, 1948 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration)
Population & Ethnic Groups
Population (2005) --6,276,883
Ethnic Groups--Jewish: 80.1% (Europe/America-born 32.1%, Israel-born 20.8%, Africa-born 14.6%, Asia-born 12.6%)--In this context, being Jewish is considered both an ethnicity and a religion.
Arab Christians 1.7%,
non-Arab Christians 0.4%,
Languages:Hebrew (official), Arabic is used officially for Arab minority, English is the most commonly used foreign language
Literacy: (Defined as how many people age 15 and over can read and write)National Literacy Rate: 95.4%
War of Independence (1948-1949)
Suez/Sinai War (1956)
Conflict with the Palestinians (1964-Present)
Six-Day War (1967)
War of Attrition (1968-1970)
Yom Kippur War (1973)
Lebanon War (1982-2000)
See also:Arab-Israeli Border Wars
Israel-Lebanon/Hezbollah War of 2006--*New*--Details and analysis on the warfare along the Lebanese border which began in July, 2006!
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict--*New*--Background information on the long-running warfare between Israel and the Palestinians!
Israel-Lebanon Conflict--*New*--Background information on the warfare along the Lebanese border!
Israeli-Palestinian Battles and Campaigns--*New*--Specific information on the warfare raids, battles, terrorist attacks, and retaliations between Israel and the Palestinians!
Israel has a technologically advanced market economy with substantial government participation. It depends on imports of crude oil, grains, raw materials, and military equipment. Despite limited natural resources, Israel has intensively developed its agricultural and industrial sectors over the past 20 years. Israel imports substantial quantities of grain, but is largely self-sufficient in other agricultural products. Cut diamonds, high-technology equipment, and agricultural products (fruits and vegetables) are the leading exports.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP): $129 billion --This is how much, in U.S. dollars, this nation's economy produces in terms of products and services annually. (2003)
GDP - per capita: $20,800 (2004)--This figure shows how much personal wealth, on average, each Israeli is worth. This is usually a good indicator of whether the nation can be considered "wealthy" or not.
See also--Middle East Economic Data
Source: The CIA World Factbook
Lebanon -to the north
Syria-to the northeast
Jordan-to the east
Saudi Arabia-to the southeast
Egypt-to the west
Palestinian Authority--to the west (Gaza), and to the east (West Bank)
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Form of Government--Parliamentary Democracy
Current Leaders:Prime Minister : Benjamin Netanyahu of the Likud Party (since March 31, 2009)
President: Shimon Peres (Since July 15, 2007)
Next National Elections: March 28, 2006
Major Political Parties
Biofiles -Biography pages of people who impacted Israel.
Ariel Sharon--Military leader and Prime Minister