Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Before we can celebrate 60 years of Independance, we remember our fallen. All over the country there are ceremonies as the whole country mourns. There is hardly a family who has not been affected or does not know someone who has been killed.
Last night I attended the official Ashkelon ceremony, along with everyone from the Municipality and many Ashkelon residents. At 8:00 p.m. there was a siren, the country ground to a standstill for 2 minutes, as we all stood to remember. The photos of our lost young soldiers were projected on to a screen as we heard some of the stories.
This morning at 11:00 am there is another countrywide siren and I will attend the official ceremony at the Ashkelon Art school, which is always a sad but impressive event. Over all the years, the official figure of Israeli soldiers killed stands at 22,437. This does not count civilians. This year alone, 65 soldiers were killed.
One of these was our own Liron Banai from Ashkelon, killed about two months ago. He was a fighter in the elite Givati combat unit. He was only 20 years old. He was mortally wounded when his jeep went over a mine at Kissufim, and he died of his injuries in hospital. He left behind a sister, a young brother and two parents who are deaf and for whom he was the spokesman. http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Terrorism-+Obstacle+to+Peace/Memorial/2008/Victims/Liran+Banai.htm
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