Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin spoke at the opening Yom Hazikaron ceremonies at Yad Lebanim in Jerusalem saying "Even today we wake up to find our enemies seeking our destruction."
"We have assembled here to remember our children who have fallen for Israel," Rivlin said. "And, to embrace the world for them by carrying on with the Torch of Remembrance – despite the pain searing our souls."
"We are committed to the will and memory of the fallen. The State of Israel has erected numerous memorials to the memory of the fallen, our heritage, and heroism," Rivlin continued. "Ammunition Hill and all the others sites remind us of their work, sacrifice, and their dreams for our people."
Rivlin then addressed the continued threats facing Israel today.
"Even today we wake up to find our enemies seeking our destruction," he said. "Even today, our cities and land are continually threatened by terror. Even today farmers working the land face the danger of death from snipers, while boys and girls must flee to bomb shelters fearing rockets and missiles.
"As it was here in Jerusalem [before the 1967 Six Day War] so it is on our southern front, which has expanded into the heart of our country," Rivlin said. "Despite the searing pain, my brothers and sisters, it is incumbent upon us to teach our children the art of war so that war will not last."
"Today, we need the strength of spirit and courage of faith possessed by our brave soldiers who fell in battle to preserve our independence," he continued. "We must hold the freedom they gave us in blood dear."
We "lovers of Jerusalem and Zion must stand against those who rise against it. Nothing will deter our soldiers who defend our land. Not international committees. Not mass marches on our borders. And not threats of annihilation.”
Yad Lebanim (“A Memorial for the Sons”) is the organization that supports bereaved families in cooperation with the Defense Ministry and official government bodies. The Jerusalem memorial, located near the government quarter, is the central memorial for soldiers killed in action in the capital.