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Courage of the Fallen

When I read about the young IDF soldiers who have been killed, I am time and time again amazed by their courage and honor.

Take the latest IDF soldier to be killed, Liran Banai.

Guy Banai was one of several mourners who spoke about Liran’s decision to serve in a combat unit – even though, as the son of deaf parents, he was exempt from doing so.

“Your mother and I didn’t want you to go to the army,” said Guy Banai, a member of the Ashkelon deaf association and an active member of the local deaf community. “But you asked us to respect you, so we let you.”

Liran Banai’s 12-year-old brother, Tamir, said that if he could turn the clock back, he would try to convince Liran not to go to the army, and their grandmother said Tamir would not be serving in the military. Banai is also survived by his younger sister, Yamit, who is currently serving in the army.

Banai’s commander also mentioned the choice the deceased made in serving in the elite Givati Brigade.

“You could have gotten an exemption from combat service, but you decided to sacrifice,” said the head of the brigade’s Tzabar Battalion, in which Banai served. “I want to tell you that you were a friend and a fighter of the first degree.”

Other family members also eulogized Banai.

“Liran, you served as our ears and voice,” Gila Banai said. “You had a lot of patience. You never asked us for money, not a word; you treated us only with honor and patience.”

“It’s hard for me to digest that you’re not here,” Banai’s sister, Yamit, said. “I don’t know how I’ll be able to continue without you. You will always remain in my heart.”

A fellow soldier said Banai derived his strength from his family.

“I remember our first conversation,” he said. “You told me about your family, and I still didn’t get the reality you live in. I remember the day-to-day, the constant difficulty you coped with, and the day I met your parents and saw where you get everything from, the resources they gave you at home.”

Keep in mind he was only 20 years old, an age when other Western youth are doing things like studying in university or travelling around the world.

Oh, how G-d is taking the finest.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
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