Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday that unlike the Holocaust, "we identified the danger of the coronavirus in time," and that Israel must always be the master of its own destiny with the strength and willingness to defend itself.
Speaking at the main ceremony of Holocaust Remembrance Day in Yad Vashem – which was recorded in advance due to the coronavirus restrictions – Netanyahu cautioned that threats from Iran “will not disappear in the coronavirus storm.”
“Let there be no mistake,” he said, “we maintain operational capabilities more than ever in order to thwart any danger, near our borders and far from them.”
According to Netanyahu, the pandemic may change the Mideast, but he hoped it would be for the better. “We will further strengthen our ties with moderate Arab states,” he said.
President Reuven Rivlin remarked that the battle against the virus – “an inhuman, invisible enemy” – underscores the common commitment to solidarity and “to fighting hatred and anti-Semitism which spread too like a contagious disease.”
“The dangers of the present cannot diminish from the spirit of this holy day, the Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Day,” said Rivlin.” “Even in this difficult time of facing a pandemic… we listen and make room to the memory of the past, to the victims and to you, the survivors,” Rivlin continued. “You, who survived humanity’s darkest hour.”
On Tuesday at 10 A.M. there will be a nationwide siren in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, when the country’s population pauses and stands at attention.