Israeli soldiers sit next to a monument engraved with names of fallen Israeli soldiers, ahead of a ceremony marking Memorial Day in Jerusalem, April 17, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Ronen Zvulun.

Israelis stood in silence for one minute on Tuesday night, as sirens blared, in remembrance of the country’s fallen soldiers and victims of terrorism.

Since 1860, a total of 23,646 people have died in battle defending the Land of Israel, while 3,134 have lost their lives in terror attacks.

“For seven decades, the IDF’s status as the people’s army has been its greatest strength,” the chief of staff of the Israeli military, Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, said at the traditional Memorial Day ceremony at the Western Wall. “The shared values of love of country, fellowship and camaraderie overcome any divisions.”

“Even now, we know our path isn’t over,” he continued. “Our enemies seek to consolidate their power across the borders, to destroy the delicate fabric of our lives and impinge upon the country’s sovereignty.”

“In the face of every threat, our soldiers stand firmly at the forefront of combat and of technology,” Eizenkot declared.

President Reuven Rivlin pledged to bereaved families in the crowd, “We will not stop for a moment to work for the country your children fought for.”

On Wednesday, many Israelis will visit military cemeteries to pay respects to fallen relatives and friends.


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