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|Official languages||Hebrew, Arabic|
|Largest Cities|| Haifa|
|HDI||0.927 (Very High)|
|Establishment of Republic||1811|
|Currency||Israeli Sheqel (ILS)|
|Our Timeline Equivalent||Israel, minus Jerusalem and a band of land from Jerusalem to the Jordan River, plus most of the Sinai Peninsula.|
Israel is the only Jewish-majority country in Southwestern Asia, as well as only one of two Jewish-majority countries in the World. It is a democracy, with the freedom of religion, and with one of the highest standards of living in the Middle East.
Israel's history goes back thousands of years, and at least some Jews have constantly inhabited the area known as Israel since then. However, its most modern reincarnation stems from around the 1200s, when Jewish-majority Khazaria sent missionaries and settlers to the area. Over the years, many Arabs converted to Judaism, and even more Jews from Khazaria and other parts of Europe and the Middle East flooded in. Unlike the Crusades, which were mostly involved in holding land militarily, the Jewish transformation took centuries, but survived in the long term because the underlying social fabric became Jewish, and thus new migrants came not to be thought of as invaders. This transformation continued, and still continues today. By the late 1600s, an estimated 50% of people living in the area were Jewish. It was a positive feedback loop, in that Jews from elsewhere heard about the rebirth of Jewish Israel, and then contributed to it by moving there. A republic was formed in 1811, which secured the rights of non-Jews. Because Jews came from many parts of the world, there was no common language. Instead of Arabic or Khazarian, Hebrew was chosen. Today, Israel is often neutral in world affairs, perhaps mostly because it is in an unstable region. However, it has a large military and is willing to protect itself from any attackers.
- 74% Jewish
- 10% Nonreligious
- 06% Atheist
- 04% Agnostic
- 06% Muslim
- 03% Christian
- 02% Druze
- 02% Bahai
- 03% others (Yazdani, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Hindu)
Because of the mixed nature of the population (Jews from Russia mixed with Jews from Persia, who mixed with local Arabs, for instance), the idea of ethnic groups is not ingrained into their society, and instead religion is the largest factor. However, Semites (Arabs and long-term Israeli inhabitants) are probably the largest group, and a plurality. Europeans would then be the next largest group. Both groups are considered "Caucasians". The percentage of non-Caucasians is small, though there are healthy Indian and Chinese communities.
- 85% Hebrew
- 08% Arabic
- 07% others (Khazarian, Yiddish, Ladino, Romanian, Russian, German, Amharic, Persian, etc)
Note: English is widely spoken as a second language.
Israel has one of the largest vegetarian populations in the Middle East.
- 73% Vegetarian
- 27% Non-Vegetarian