IDF airshow in Jerusalem on Israel's Independence Day 2017. (Hadas Parush/Flash90) (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Israeli flag military show jerusalem

The main event every year is a torch lighting which typically takes place at Mount Herzl, this year, however, there will be multiple, with simultaneous lighting at 12 sites attacked by Hamas.

By Troy O. Fritzhand, The Algemeiner

The Israeli government has unveiled the new logo for this year’s Israeli Independence Day.

The image to mark the 76th annual celebration of the independence of the modern State of Israel shows a Star of David intertwined with the color yellow, which has become synonymous with the release of the hostages kidnapped by Hamas to Gaza. The image is accompanied by a phrase reading “Israeli Heroism” in Hebrew.

Official logo for Israel’s 76th Independence Day celebrations. Photo: Screenshot

The announcement came just over a month before Independence Day, known as Yom Haatzmaut, will commence. The celebrations — which take place on the 5th day of the Hebrew month of Iyar — are scheduled this year from the evening of May 13 to the evening of May 14.

Israeli Transportation Minister Miri Regev, who is in charge of planning for official state events, has said that despite the ongoing war against Hamas in Gaza, celebrations will continue, though with certain limits unlike in years past.

The main event every year is a torch lighting which typically takes place at Mount Herzl, Israel’s national cemetery and the final resting place of many fallen Israeli soldiers and former presidents and prime ministers.

This year, however, there will be multiple torch lightings, one at Mount Herzl and a simultaneous candle lighting at 12 sites attacked by Hamas terrorists in southern Israel on Oct. 7, such as Kibbutz Be’eri and the site of the Nova Music Festival massacre.

In total, Hamas-led Palestinian terrorists on Oct. 7 murdered more than 1,200 people and kidnapped 253 others as hostages, launching the current war in Gaza with their surprise invasion.

The yellow in the new Independence Day logo commemorates the hostages — across Israel, citizens have placed yellow ribbons on their clothing and on the door handles of their cars in hopes of keeping awareness of their plight alive, even as international pressure for their release has slowly subsided.

Due to the VIP participation and scale of the Mount Herzl event, there will reportedly be extra anti-missile defense systems placed around the site to protect it from rocket fire.

Independence Day events this year will also be designed to respect the mental health of Israeli soldiers. The Jerusalem Municipality, which is home to the Mount Herzl torch lighting, announced that officials will cancel fireworks and explosives during the celebrations.

“The city of Jerusalem is preparing for Independence Day events and to mark the establishment of the State of Israel, and in the spirit of the times, the events will take place this year in the shadow of the ongoing war [against Hamas in Gaza] and the many people for whom the sounds of explosives evoke uncomfortable feelings,” read a statement from the municipality released last week.

“Independence Day events will begin at the end of Memorial Day for the Fallen Soldiers of the Wars of Israel and Victims of Actions of Terrorism (Yom HaZikaron in Hebrew) who fell in the wars and whose death commanded us life,” the statement continued.

“This year, Independence Day will be celebrated in Jerusalem with a salute to the IDF [Israel Defense Forces] and the security forces, to the martyrs and their families, to the wounded and abductees. We will all offer a prayer for their speedy return from captivity, for their health, and for strengthening the strength and glory of the State of Israel.”

Mental health has come to the forefront of Israeli society, with both citizens and soldiers suffering from trauma due to the Oct. 7 massacre and ensuing war in Gaza.

This led IDF officials to call on Israelis to avoid using toy explosives on the Jewish holiday of Purim last month, noting that loud, sudden sounds could cause panic attacks or stress to soldiers who may hear them as gun shots or actual explosives.

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