Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the Memorial Day ceremony on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, April 25, 2023. Photo by Kobi Gideon/GPO. Kobi Gideon/GPO
Netanyahu at Mount Herzl

The prime minister also stressed the importance of bringing home the bodies IDF soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, and captives Avera Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, held by Hamas.

By Ben Rappaport, United with Israel

In his remarks on Tuesday at Israel’s central Memorial Day ceremony held at Mount Herzl military cemetery in Jerusalem,  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on Israelis to “stand together as brothers.”

“This year more than ever, on Memorial Day for the heroes of the nation we will remember that we are brothers: Jews, Druze, Muslims, Bedouin, Christians, Circassians,” he said.

“Brothers in service, brothers in arms, brothers in blood”

“Every family with its own suffering. But the support of the nation gives us strength to cling to life, to overcome the loss of brothers and sons. And the bereaved families beside them, with their inner strength, strengthen the spirit of the nation.”

The prime minister also stressed the importance of bringing home the bodies IDF soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, and captives Avera Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, held by Hamas.

“We will stand together as brothers – and return our brothers Oron, Hadar, Avera, and Hisham.

“We will stand together as brothers – and ensure our independence from generation to generation.

“We will stand together as brothers, and bow our heads in unending tribute to the heroism of the fallen, and the inner strength of their families,” he said.

In his speech at the Western Wall memorial ceremony in Jerusalem on Monday night, Israel’s President Isaac Herzog proclaimed: “The siren that pierced the silence right now, making its way from one end of the land to the next, rattles our souls and makes way for remembrance, which overwhelms us with silence.

“I ask myself, I ask us: What other country in the world has such a special sound? It is the sound of pain and of hope, of grief and of pride. It is the sound of the State of Israel. A sound that calls on us to pause for a moment, to lock in the sanctity, to remember and to connect—together,” the president continued.

“We must do everything—everything!—to safeguard this shared home,” the president also said. “To argue and disagree, like always, with all the fervor and passion, but to love one another as sisters and brothers, for we are one people!”

“Dearly beloved families, mothers and fathers, girls and boys, grandmothers and grandfathers, sisters and brothers, you whose hearts are full of love. The grief is boundless, the pain, immeasurable. To silent sobbing, there can be no response. You are in our hearts and thoughts all year round, and especially on this day.”

JNS contributed to this report.