Israel’s official memorial day, officially known as Israeli Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism Remembrance Day. It honors the memory of 22,867 soldiers killed in the line of duty and 3,971 civilian victims of terror. National memorial services are held in the presence of Israel’s top leadership and military personnel. The day opens with a siren the preceding evening at 20:00 (8:00 pm), given that in the Hebrew calendar system, the day begins at sunset. The siren is heard all over the country and lasts for one minute, during which Israelis stop everything (including driving, which stops highways) and stand in silence, commemorating the fallen and showing respect. Many religious Jews say prayers for the souls of the fallen soldiers at this time. The official ceremony to mark the opening of the day takes place at the Western Wall, and the flag of Israel is lowered to half staff.
A two-minute siren is heard at 11:00 the following morning, which marks the opening of the official memorial ceremonies and private remembrance gatherings at each cemetery where soldiers are buried. The day officially draws to a close between 19:00 and 20:00 (7–8 p.m.) in the official ceremony of Israel Independence Day on Mount Herzl, when the flag of Israel is returned to full staff. This video was shot at Machane Yehuda – ×©×•×§ ×ž×—× ×” ×™×”×•×“×” -, Jerusalem’s busy central market at 11 am on May 9, 2011.