IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot mourned the IDF's fallen at the memorial torch-lighting ceremony that took place at the Western Wall on Wednesday, as Israel began its observance of Remembrance Day.
Saluting the IDF's soldiers and commanders who fell in Israel's wars and while fighting to ensure the security of the Jewish state's citizens, Eisenkot said that the Western Wall symbolizes "the Jewish people's magnificent history and our ability to build and be built, to defend ourselves - and to fight for our existence, as a united, independent and steadfast people."
"Here we will remember our fallen brothers and from here we will issue the call: The Jewish People will remember its sons and daughters, the loyal and the brave, the soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces."
Eisenkot said that the IDF was a true "people's army," that took its members from all sectors of society and then fed them back into society to contribute again as citizens. "The secret of the Israel Defense Forces lies in it being an inseparable part of Israeli society," he said.
"Because of the fighting spirit of the fallen soldiers, on the eve of Israel's 67th Independence Day, we can be proud of the great military strength that grants security to the residents and citizens of Israel and ensures its continued existence," he said.