Rivlin: Hezbollah will bring about the destruction of Lebanon
President lights Hanukkah candles with crews from Ramon Air Force Base, warns Hezbollah leading Lebanon to ruin for Iranian agenda.
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin lit the third candle of Hanukkah Tuesday evening with the men and women of the 25th Wing of the Israel Air Force at the Ramon Air Force Base. IAF Commander Maj-Gen Amikam Norkis and commander of Ramon AFB Col. G also participated in the event. The president was briefed on the activities of the various squadrons on the base by the commanders and then viewed the aircraft that they use on operations.
Meeting the aircrews, the president spoke about Operation Northern Shield, saying “last night, the IDF began Operation Northern Shield.
“Hezballah’s offensive tunnels into Israeli territory are a blatant violation of Israeli sovereignty,” Rivlin said. “Hezballah, which portrays itself as the ‘shield of Lebanon’ will bring its eventual downfall. The discovery of these tunnels only prove the depth of Iranian involvement in Lebanon, its responsibility for what happens in Lebanon. We warn Hezballah not to subjugate Lebanon to an Iranian agenda, or to use Lebanon as a base for attacking Israel. The international community must understand that Israel will do everything necessary to defend itself, and that Israel calls for the involvement of international actors in enforcing UN Security Council resolutions. From here, I say to all citizens of Israel, particularly those in the north – you can be calm and confident. Your security is our highest priority. The whole IDF is ready and waiting to respond, and the current operation proves the importance of the IDF’s and the air force’s readiness for any scenario that is imposed on us. You give us confidence, because we know that we can rely on you.”
Later, lighting candles with the men and women of the base, the president said “every year we say the blessing ‘for the miracles and the wonders and the mighty deeds and the acts of war that you did for our fathers in these days at that time’. The Maccabees, the Hasmoneans, were the heroes of that time. You, the air force family, pilots and aircrew, combat support and technical support, men and women, you are the heroes of our time!”
President Rivlin emphasized that human capital was the secret of the air force’s success: “We saw you in the last few weeks, the aircrews of IAF combat aircraft and helicopters and the people of the Ramon air force base, all of you on the front line of air force and IDF operations in Gaza. We followed your brave and daring work day and night, on operations and performing routine security, including supporting ground troops in the operation during which the Israeli hero Col. M was killed.È
Commander of the IAF, Brig-Gen Amiram Norkin: “We are lighting the third candle of Chanukah tonight at Ramon air force base, one of the most operationally active bases in the IAF. From here, every day and night, sorties go out with the aim of protecting the citizens of the State of Israel. The air force and the other branches of the IDF work constantly to ensure that Israelis can celebrate Chanukah in safety and security. The IAF is deployed in every area, from north to south, and ready at any moment to respond operationally to any challenge.”