When Israel’s independence was declared in 1948, it was more than just a moment in time. It was a moment that changed everything.
Israel’s Independence, 1948
What was that moment like? That moment in 1948 when Israel’s independence was declared. People talk about it, think about it, but only those who lived through it can really say. It was like a dream, except no one was sleeping. The juxtaposition of the Holocaust – one of the darkest times in Jewish exile – to the rebirth of the ancient Jewish state.
And it seems that the world does not understand that. When Israel declared its independence in 1948, it was not the beginning of history for the Jewish people. It was another link in the long chain. Israel is not a new state. The Jewish land is not new. The modern state might be just that – modern – but the idea of Jewish autonomy in the Jewish homeland is by no means modern. Exile has made the world forget that the Jewish people belong in Israel; that G-d gave them the land. The Jewish people have not forgotten, though.
There has been a continuous Jewish presence in the land of Israel, even after the exile in the year 70. And what about Jerusalem? Jews have lived there since King David’s time, aside from the times that they were banned from living there.
How many other nations can say something like that? What makes the world think that the Jews are going anywhere now?
Those who experienced the independence of 1948 knew that what was happening was part of their ancient history. They knew that a rebirth was happening, not just a birth.