IDF bids farewell to President Rivlin

Outgoing president meets 70 soldiers who he had awarded during his term in office in last meeting with IDF.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

IDF says farewell to President Rivlin
IDF says farewell to President Rivlin
IDF spokesperson

An IDF farewell event for the President of the State, Mr. Reuven (Ruby) Rivlin, headed by the Chief of the General Staff and the General Staff Forum, took place today (Tuesday) at the Rabin Camp, The Kirya.

During the farewell, the president met with 70 soldiers who had received the president's outstanding award throughout his seven years in office. Six of the outstanding ones, who come from different places in Israel and around the world, and are part of the Israeli mosaic, presented to the President their work and positions in the IDF today.

Throughout the farewell, a number of lectures were given on select projects, among them the "Progress" project of the Human Resources Division, which works to integrate persons awaiting their military service on the autistic spectrum in the IDF. In this project, for the first time ever, soldiers on the autism spectrum will be integrated within the service in a variety of positions. The project is led by CPT. (Res.) Udi Heller, who is on the autism spectrum himself and works to integrate young people on the autism spectrum in all areas of society. Heller promotes the program as part of his role in the Personnel Planning Brigade. At the end of Udi's remarks, the President and the Chief of the General Staff saluted him for his service in the IDF and thanked him for his important work.

The president also had a send-off at the General Staff Forum, during which the forum members thanked him for their joint work in recent years, for his contribution to the country in a number of different public positions, and of course for seven years of presidency in which he saw the IDF as the army of the people and much to be proud of.

At the end of the event, an honor guard was chaired by the Defense Minister, the Chief of the General Staff and the General Staff Forum.

In the words of the President, Mr. Reuven (Ruby) Rivlin: "IDF soldiers and commanders on land in the air and at sea, dear and beloved, the marvelous and the wonderful. How much I love you!
Wherever it was necessary to protect the security of the State of Israel and the people of Israel - I had the privilege to see you. When they said that Israeli society had lost the compass, like a soldier in navigation, you were my pinpointed location for the values ​​of Israeli hope. Strong, united, determined to offer your shoulder. Also willing to pay a price if needed.

I cannot help but think at this parting about the bereaved families. About the wounded in body and soul and for the missing who have not yet returned home, to be buried in Israel. Everyone, everyone in my heart.

It is a parting, and yet we do not let go, we do not separate. If you shall allow me, Chief of the General Staff, I'm ready to report to the reserve service once again. Thank you very much. May you be blessed!"

The Chief of the General Staff, LTG Aviv Kohavi: "Honorable President, in your famous speech at the Herzliya Conference, you spoke about the four tribes - the Zionist majority, the religious Zionists, the Arab and ultra-Orthodox minority. Alongside this you also referred to the 'breaking lines' as you called them. You talked about Ashkenazis and Mizrahis, about right-wing and left, about new and old immigrants, about the periphery and the center, rich and poor, you explained and analyzed - that this is really the heart of the problem. They do not meet each other, they do not study, do not hear, do not touch and do not even see some of the points of view of each other. The almost central reason we chose to gather here beyond a great and deep respect for you, is to send you off with what you called "Israeli hope." You said, "The road is still long and this task is very difficult," in the IDF it looks different.

The IDF is the Israeli hope.

In the Israel Defense Forces - in a ship, in a tank or in the Jets Shelters - there are no separating lines, and no tribes, there are only seam lines and common spaces - there is one army.

What happens inside a tank is that people from all of these groups - unite together, not melt together - but unite together.

The IDF is a machine for meeting with a strong and meaningful connection, and therefore it gives real Israeli hope. You can rest assured that this matter is on our minds. We try and work to integrate a variety of populations in the IDF through projects and programs. I hope that we will continue to be the marker of a state in which one Israeli society exists that preserves the uniqueness of the various tribes and populations. The IDF is the people's army. One army for all the tribes of Israel. "The IDF is the Israeli hope.""