Israel is celebrating its 60th birthday this year.
On May 14, 1948, the modern state of Israel was born, and for the first time in nearly 2,000 years, the Jewish people had a land of their own.
When you look at Israel today, you see a country the size of New Jersey and home to just seven million people.
But look closer and you find a thriving democracy, a renowned military force and a world leader in technology and agriculture.
It has given the world the cell phone, computer processors and voice mail.
Israelis have also made the barren desert bloom again, planting forests and exporting fruits, vegetables and flowers.
Journalist Donna Rosenthal has written about the country and its people in her book, "The Israelis - Ordinary People in an Extraordinary Land."
Click play to hear her comments on how the Jewish state differs from what is often reported in news headlines.