Celebrations are taking place across Israel to celebrate the 60th anniversary of its declaration of independence on 14 May 1948.
In that time the population of Israel has multiplied by 10 and it has a stronger economy and military than its founders could have dreamt of.
The anniversary was celebrated with fireworks, concerts, an aerial display and a gigantic street parade on the streets of Jerusalem.
For the Palestinians, however, foundation day is known as al-Nakba, or "the Catastrophe". They held marches in the West Bank to mark the occasion.
Fears for the future
Despite Israel's success, the country faces an uncertain future. There are unresolved conflicts with neighbouring Arab countries and the Palestinians and concerns over corruption in Israeli politics.
On top of this, many Israelis are losing confidence in the way the jigsaw of ethnic and religious groups fit together in the Jewish state.
In the run up to the anniversary, Middle East correspondent Tim Franks has spoken to five Israeli citizens. What do they make of their compatriots and their state?
The secular liberal
Yuli, a trainee teacher, talks about the difficulty in reconciling her liberal views with a growing Israeli conservatism.
Shoshana, a grandmother, talks of her pride in being one of the more than 400,000 Jewish settlers who live on occupied territory.
The Arab Israeli
Mohammed, a Palestinian from a village near Nazareth, warns against the harshness with which Jewish Israelis treat the Arab minority.
The ultra orthodox
Jonathan, a highly religious Haredi Jew, speaks of his community's separation from the secular Israeli mainstream.
Mila is a piano teacher who moved to Israel from Russia. She describes her split feelings of pride and discomfort with the Israeli state.