Standing for Siren
Q: Is it preferable to stand silently during the siren on Remembrance Day for Fallen Soldiers or to learn Torah?
A: One should be silent as a remembrance of the fallen. If he is unable to think about the fallen, he should recite Tehillim (Psalms) quietly.
Q: Is standing silently during the siren a non-Jewish custom? What does it have to do with Remembrance Day?
A: It is not a non-Jewish custom, and hardly any countries have such a practice. One should remember the deceased and cry for them. One who is unable should recite Tehillim.
Establishing a Holiday
Q: Do our Sages have the authority today to establish new holidays? What is the source?
A: Yes. Shut Chatam Sofer, Yoreh Deah 333. Orach Chaim 208.
Q: Who rules that we do not recite Tachanun on Yom Ha-Atzmaut – especially against the great Rabbis of the generation, including Ha-Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv?
A: The question is incomprehensible. Ha-Rav David Cohen (Rav in our Yeshiva) told me that in his youth he davened at the Tiferet Bachurim shul and when they wanted to recite Tachanun on Yom Ha-Atzmaut, Ha-Rav Elyashiv did not allow it.
Q: I learn in a Charedi yeshiva in which Tachanun is said on Yom Ha-Atzamaut. I disagree with this practice. Should I leave when the others say it?
A: It is permissible to stay and not recite Tachanun yourself. But not in a defiant way, since you are required to honor the Torah, and this is the place where you learn.
Shave and a Haircut
Q: Is it permissible to shave and get a haircut for Yom Ha-Atzmaut? Are all of the laws of mourning of Sefirat Ha-Omer suspended on Yom Ha-Atzmaut?
A: Yes, it is a holiday. Responsa of Ha-Rav Yitzchak Nissim (former Chief Sefardic Rabbi of Israel). One should shave before Maariv on Yom Ha-Atzmaut and wear holiday clothing.
Q: Is it permissible to get married on Yom Ha-Atzmaut?
A: Same answer as for getting a haircut and shaving.
Q: Should we recite Hallel on Yom Ha-Atzmaut? With a blessing?
A: Yes (Ruling of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel) with a blessing (Ha-Rav Shlomo Goren).
Q: Should we recite Hallel on the night of Yom Ha-Atzmaut?
A: This is the opinion of Ha-Rav Shlomo Goren, but the majority does not do so. And this was the decision of our Rabbi, Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah Kook.
"Ya'aleh Ve-Yavo" and "Al Ha-Nisim"
Q: Why don't we recite "Ya'aleh Ve-Yavo", or "Al Ha-Nisim" on Yom Ha-Atzmaut?
A: Our Sages decreed in the Gemara that "Ya'aleh Ve-Yavo" is recited on Torah holidays, "Al Ha-Nisim" is recited on rabbinic holidays and Hallel is recited on future miraculous salvations.
Q: Why should we celebrate Yom Ha-Atzmaut when there is so much darkness in our State?
A: We give thanks to Hashem for the light in the State. We cry on Tisha Be-Av for the darkness which still remains from the Exile.
Q: Where is it possible to find halachic responsa regarding Yom Ha-Atzmaut?
A: The book "Hilchot Yom Ha-Atzmaut Ve-Yom Yerushalayim" of Ha-Rav Nachum Rakover.