Israel deeply mourns the more than 3,000 victims of the tragic events of September 11, 2001. The people of Israel express their most heartfelt sympathy for the American people.
We share in your grief, and will keep the victims and their families in our heart and prayers forever.
We salute you, a people who refused to succumb to hatred or to fear, but instead stood united in compassion, tolerance and generosity of spirit to survive your darkest hour.
We stand with you, a people who chose to mourn the innocent victims of September 11th with dignity and to honor their memory by bringing those responsible to justice.
We support you not only in the fight against terrorism, but also in the battle for freedom and security, democracy and peace.
The ties of shared values and genuine friendship between our two peoples are stronger than ever.
America, Israel is with you.
The five Israeli victims of September 11, 2001:
• Alona Avraham
• Leon Lebor
• Shay Levinhar
• Daniel Lewin
• Haggai Sheffi
At an official ceremony in solidarity with the American people and the families of the victims held in the Prime Minister's office on the first anniversary of the attacks - on Sept 11, 2002 at 15:46 PM (8:46 AM in New York) - Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and US Ambassador Daniel Kurtzer spoke, and Ashkenzi Chief Rabbi Yisrael Lau recited psalms. Flags were lowered to half-mast.
At the Israeli Cabinet meeting on September 10 devoted to the attacks, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said:
"Tomorrow, we will mark one year since the 9.11.2001 terror attack on the US. Thousands of civilians from many countries lost their lives in the attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. They were perpetrated by terrorists who had lived in the US and who used the freedoms that this great democracy affords its citizens - in order to attack it. It was an historic warning light to democracies, which are being called on to defend themselves against those who would assail them. Our hearts are with the innocent victims' families and with the American people. I hold US President George Bush in the highest esteem for the true leadership that he showed in understanding the great historic challenge facing him.
Israel, which has been engaged in a war against murderous terror since its independence to this very day, knows that there is no compromise in the war against terror. Any display of weakness in the battle against terror is destined to claim a heavy price.
Tomorrow, we will hold a solidarity assembly to mark the anniversary. We will remember 9.11.2001 as a day on which the dark and dangerous forces threw down a challenge to the leadership of the free world and the values of liberty and democracy. The counter-assault of the free world, led by the US, began that very day.
We believe that this campaign will end in the complete victory of light over darkness."
Foreign Minister Shimon Peres wrote to US Secretary of State Colin Powell:
"As the United States remembers the terrible events of September 11, one year after the murderous hand of terrorism caused the loss of so many innocent lives in the destruction of the World Trade Center, the attack on the Pentagon, and the crashing of United Flight 93, Israel remembers together with you. As you honor the memory of the victims, we, too, pay tribute to the victims and the heroes of that terrible day...
As America pays homage to the victims of September 11 and the families commemorate their loved ones, we stand as one with you and convey our heartfelt sympathy and condolences."
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