Israel President Reuven (Ruvi) RIvlin, on Friday 19 April / 15 Nissan, celebrated the Passover Seder with IDF Chief-of-Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi and 400 lone soldiers from some 35 countries at the Yahad-United for Israel’s Soldiers (UFIS) facility at Givat Olga. They were joined by the Chairman of UFIS Maj.-Gen. (res) Yoram Yair, Chief Education Officer Brig.-Gen. Zvika Faireisen and CEO of UFIS Brig.-Gen. (res) Ilan Tal.
Attached photo credit: Tzalamim Be’Klik
From the president’s remarks to the soldiers Friday night:
“I am delighted to be celebrating this festive holiday evening with you, dear soldiers. Our ancestors celebrated the first Passover as they were leaving Egypt for Israel, and it marked their move from slavery to freedom. Today, Passover is a holiday where families gather for the Seder meal. We are your family and you are our family. You are part of us, and we are part of you. One does not attain freedom overnight. Freedom is a sustained effort – spiritual and physical. Today, too, we must protect our freedom and our right to live in the State of Israel. Because of that, we still need a strong army. Each one of you comes from a different background. But you all have in common the fact that you chose to give of yourselves for the benefit of the Jewish people and the State of Israel.”
“Despite the difficulties of being a soldier, and even more so of being a lone soldier, you chose to serve the state in order to protect us all. You are brave and wonderful people. It is a great honor to sit with you here tonight, with the Chief of Staff and the head of UFIS, Maj-Gen Yoram Yair. I think the idea of having a Seder night for you, men and women of the IDF, here at Givat Olga is fantastic. It is an opportunity for us to give something back to you.”