Thursday, May 12, 2016

6 ways Israel is counting its blessings on Independence Day

By Ben Sales for

A growing population, an even faster-growing economy, more cellphones per capita than the US, as well as more women in its parliament – plenty to celebrate at 68

When Israel entered its 1948 War of Independence, the coastal city of Rishon Lezion was a hardscrabble settlement with fewer than 20,000 inhabitants.

As waves of immigrants inundated Israel in its founding years, many were settled in temporary camps on Rishon Lezion’s sandy outskirts. The arrivals braved rainy winters in tents and subsisted on the national food rationing program, which limited Israeli consumption of eggs and meat.

Not seven decades later, Rishon Lezion is Israel’s fourth largest city, a bustling hub of nearly 250,000 freckled with malls.

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