'How dare they show their faces?'

Father of fallen IDF hero Emmanuel Moreno criticizes Amir Peretz, Tzipi Livni, Dan Halutz for attending IDF memorial ceremony.

Eliran Aharon,

Ilan Moreno
Ilan Moreno
Eliran Aharon

Ilan Moreno, the father of Lieutenant Colonel Emmanuel Moreno, is strongly criticizing the presence of Amir Peretz (Zionist Union), Tzipi Livni (Zionist Union) and Dan Halutz at Tuesday's national memorial ceremony.

The ceremony on Mount Herzl was in memory of the 121 IDF soldiers killed in the Second Lebanon War. Lt. Col. Moreno, the commander of elite commando unit Sayeret Matkal, and father of three young children, was felled by a sniper's bullet on the last day of the war.

The Second Lebanon took place between July 12 and August 14, 2006, and was triggered by a deadly border attack by Hezbollah terrorists, which led to the abductions of IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev. It later turned out that they had been killed and their bodies were abducted.

The government at the time, led by then-Prime Minister Ehud Olmert - who is currently in prison for corruption - was lambasted for its poor conduct during the war, in particular for lacking any discernible strategy and for sending IDF soldiers into hostile territory without the proper equipment.

"People who had direct responsibility for the war should not have come," Ilan Moreno told Arutz Sheva. "A significant number of bereaved parents skipped the ceremony due to the unwanted presence of people like Tzipi Livni, Dan Halutz and Air Peretz."

Moreno claims that former Defense Minister Peretz, former Foreign Minister Livni and former IDF Chief of Staff Halutz had no reason to attend the memorial ceremony. "My wife decided not to come. I only came because my friends dedicated a lot of time to prepare for this day.

"How could people who demonstrated such irresponsibility in conducting the war come today in such a brazen manner and appear before the hurt public that still has not gotten over, and never will get over, their loss?" he asked.

He explained that the bereaved parents also have criticism for the Knesset for not functioning properly during the war. "Where was the Knesset for the 34 days of failed war, while people fell every day? How did they not exert an influence and make some changes in the war's conduct? This is what comes to mind for me on a day like today."

Ilan Moreno then returned to the issue of loss and his thoughts about his fallen son. "Emmanuel is with us every day. There is the public's Emmanuel and there is our Emmanuel. We have the Emmanuel whose picture we can see, while the public holds Emmanuel as a symbol. They don't know who he is but he represents a generation of heroes.

"He wasn't the only hero in this war. There were many heroes, including those who aren't talked about. But Emmanuel represents an entire generation of fighters who went to battle even though they had no leaders."

Emanuel Moreno's photograph has never been made public, as it would endanger other soldiers who also engaged in the dangerous, super clandestine operations he took part in. His parents did not know the details of his service and his mother, Sylvia Moreno, once told friends when he was single, he would come home from the army and pitch in with housework, even doing the ironing, as if he was a regular soldier.