There are 70 school days before Yom Ha'atzmaut when we will celebrate 70 years of Israel's independence! As we count down to our celebration, we will be sharing a daily fact about Israel and what makes the country so unique. Enjoy!
Today’s fact is….
The Hoopoe is the national bird of Israel.
On February 14: On this day in 1949, the Israeli Knesset met for the first time. Based on the British system, voters choose a party. Each party submits a list of its leaders, and the number of leaders who become members of parliament is proportional to the percentage of the general vote received by the party.
2,000-year-old seeds were discovered in 1963 inside an ancient jar in Israel. They were planted in 2005 and a tree that had been extinct for over 1800 years sprouted.
Israel has the fourth largest air force in the world (after the U.S, Russia and China), including an aerial arsenal of over 250 F-16's.
Israel has the third highest rate of entrepreneurship – and the highest rate among women and among people over 55 – in the world.
Israel is only 1/6 of 1% of the landmass of the Middle East.
On Sunday in Israel, children go to school and adults go to work. Many people don't work on Friday instead, to prepare for Shabbat.
Israel is the only country in the world with a mandatory military service requirement for women.
Israeli bank notes have Braille on them.
Israel became the first country to place a ban on the use of underweight models on catwalks.
In 1966, Shai Agnon became Israel's first recipient of a Nobel Prize — for literature.
With peanuts introduced to their diets earlier (mostly in the form of the snack, Bamba), babies in Israel are 10 times less likely to suffer from a peanut allergy than Jewish children in the UK.
Israeli academics produce more scientific papers per capita than anywhere else in the world.
The town of Kiryat Shemona is named after eight men who fell defending Tel Hai in 1920.
Akhzivland, near Nahariya, was declared independent by resident Eli Avivi in 1970, after years battling with the government over planning permission.
There are roughly 273 kibbutzim in Israel.
The Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers TV series was produced by Israeli Haim Saban.
Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv is the most expensive site on the official Israeli Monopoly board.
The glue on Israeli stamps is kosher.
Israel's national bird is the duchifot, the hoopoe bird.
On January 16: On this day in 2003, Ilan Ramon, the first Israeli astronaut, launched into space on the Space Shuttle Columbia. Tragically, the shuttle exploded upon reentry about two weeks later, killing Ramon and his six fellow astronauts.
Only two countries began the 21st century with a net gain in their number of trees; Israel was one of them.
Heart tissue regeneration is possible in the U.S. thanks to Israeli stem-cell technology.
Israel is one of only three democracies in the world without a codified constitution. The other two are New Zealand and Britain.
Israel published more books translated from other languages than any other nation in the world.
El Al, Israel's national airline, set the world record for the most passengers on a commercial flight.
Approximately one million notes are put into the Kotel each year (and cleaned out before Rosh Hashanah and Pesach)
The Israeli government is based on the British system, and the highest political office is Prime Minister. The current Prime Minister is Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israel is one of only nine countries in the world that can launch its own satellites into space.
When Golda Meir became prime minister of Israel in 1969, she was only the third woman elected to lead a country in the modern world.
Israel's Declaration of Independence provides that the country would have a Constitution by October of 1948 . Israel to this day does not have a Constitution.
FACT #3The Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth.
FACT #2Israel has pioneered the use of drip irrigation through reverse osmosis, and as a result has a lot of productive farms in extremely arid regions.
The national symbol of Israel consists of a blue shield with a menorah surrounded by olive branches. The menorah symbolizes enlightenment, and the olive branches represent peace.