Jerusalem: Israel is celebrating 65 years of independence with barbeques, air force flyovers, and an international bible quiz.
Top Israeli leaders began today`s festivities by singing peppy standards in a televised event recognizing Israeli soldiers.
In an address, President Shimon Peres said Israel`s enemies have tried for decades to destroy the Jewish state, and that Israel`s wars against them have been just. He said Israel would defend itself against dangers from Hezbollah and Hamas militants, and called Iran`s leadership one of "craziness."
Israeli military chief Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz said Israel`s army will continue to defend Israelis until "the day that peace comes."
The festivities, which began yesterday night, come just a day after the country mourned its war dead during its annual Remembrance Day commemorations.