President Shimon Peres spoke about Maj.-Gen. (res.) Israel Tal, 86, who passed away Wednesday morning saying, "Regardless of the rank on his shoulder, he was, and so will remain in our consciousness, an outstanding person."
Peres said Tal "knew how to live at the peak of morality and to rise in the technological ladder. He was a military leader, a guide and a trailblazer. He discovered an amazing ability in everyone."
About the Merkava tank which Tal designed, the president explained, "The tank he developed was supposed to be the best in the world. And it seems that is how is it considered."
Peres continued, "He formulated, in the clearest way, a strategy which distinguishes between the need to save the country and fortify its positions. In battle, he knew no alternative to winning. But he also knew that the alternative to war was yearned for peace which was within easy reach. He was Israel's endless well. May his memory be blessed."