He inquired about how we were celebrating Yom HaAtzmaut (Israel Independence Day). This is an interesting question that I've seen several other blogs write about.
For our friend above, he fought the Independence War and was personally involved in building up Israel. His family has lived in Israel, mostly in Jerusalem, for many generations. He is extremely proud of his heritage, his religion, and being part of a Jewish nation. Yom HaAtzmaut is very important to him, understandably so.
For other's, it's a nice day for a picnic and barbecue, which is a pretty standard Israeli custom for the day, along with various patriotic town events.
But in today's politically charged environment, when the government is going out of it's way to demonize part of the population and taking draconian measures, many feel disenfranchised.
The sad fact is it's very difficult to differenciate between the government and the nation. The actions of the government are pushing people away from their solid foundation of support for the nation.
Unfortunately, they either fail to realize this or consider it a reasonable sacrifice for their goals.
Hashem Yazo! (G-d help us!)