The nation mourns the loss of two young people who were murdered only because they were Israelis.
IDF soldier Staff Sergeant Almog Shilony was laid to rest on Tuesday afternoon at Jerusalem’s Mount Herzl military cemetery.
Shilony, from Modi’in in central Israel, was a soldier in the Air Force. He was stabbed by an Arab terrorist in Tel Aviv on Monday.
Shilony succumbed to his wounds after medical teams had spent hours fighting to save him
On the eve of his recruitment to the IDF, Shilony said: “I always wanted to be a fighter. I prepared for my recruitment by working out, running.”
Shilony, who completed a platoon commander’s course, had served in Nahal Haredi, an army framework designed to allow religious Israelis to serve in the IDF in an atmosphere conducive to their religious convictions. He was described by his colleagues as a true believer and one who was highly respected by the soldiers serving under him.
Sahar, Almog’s twin brother, stated: “Almog was a strong kid, always smiling. We celebrated our 20th birthday a month ago in a Jerusalem pub. We were sitting with our girlfriends, we laughed. I told him I hoped everything he wanted would come true. He wanted to marry Noy, his girlfriend for the last two and a half years. There are no words for how I feel right now. I can’t comprehend it.”
Shilony is survived by his parents, an older sister, his twin brother and two younger brothers.
Survivor of a Previous Attack
Earlier on Tuesday, Dalia Lemkus, 26, from Tekoa in Gush Etzion, was buried in Tekoa. An Arab terrorist ran her over with his car and then stabbed her while she was waiting for a ride. The terrorist also manged to stab and wound another two Israelis before being shot by a security guard.
Dalia’s family moved to Israel from South Africa over 20 years ago and had been living in Tekoa for 15 years. She was the eldest of six siblings.
An occupational therapist in kindergartens, Dalia loved working with children. She also volunteered as an ambulance driver and at the Tekoa branch of Yad Sarah, which provides medical and rehabilitative equipment and other services for the sick, home-bound and elderly.
Dalia had previously survived a stabbing attack in 2006 while waiting for a ride. An Arab terrorist attacked the waiting crowd and wounded her and another Israeli. She escaped with only light wounds.
WATCH: the terror attack in which Dalia was murdered.
‘They Want to Get Rid of Us Wherever We Are’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared: “The terrorism against us knows no borders. It is aimed at all parts of the country for a simple reason. The terrorists and those who incite to it want to get rid of us wherever we are. As far as they’re concerned, we don’t need to be in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem or anywhere else.”
Responding to the spate of attacks, President Reuven Rivlin stated: “These are difficult days. They demand of us unity and strength in the face of the perpetrators of terror, who proved today with their blood-soaked hands that the reality in Jerusalem is as it is in Tel Aviv, and the reality in Tel Aviv is as it is in Gush Etzion. I call on all elected officials, all our leaders, from all across the political spectrum, to stand united before the State of Israel. I place my trust in the security forces, that they will not rest until they return normality to our daily lives.”
Rivlin sent his condolences to the families who “have lost that most dear to them on this terrible day,” and sent his wishes for a speedy and full recovery to all those injured.
Stepping Up Counter-Terror Measures
Netanyahu convened a special security discussion Monday night with Israel’s top security officials to discuss further measures in order to combat the wave of Arab terror, which has claimed the lives of six Israelis in the past month.
The prime minister ordered that a series of steps be taken against terrorists, including increasing the number of security forces on the ground. Israel’s police may call up reserve units to bolster security throughout the country.
In addition, a full closure on Judea and Samaria is being considered by security officials, meaning that Arabs will not be allowed into Israeli towns and communities.
Netanyahu further ordered moving forward on the demolition of terrorists’ homes. Arab news sources are reporting that the family of the terrorist who murdered Shilony has received notice from the IDF that their house will be demolished Tuesday night.
Security officials expressed fear of a large-scale terror attack by Hamas in the near future. They are reportedly taking all measures to prevent such a scenario.
Author: Aryeh Savir
Staff Writer, United with Israel