Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, visited the community of Har Bracha in Samaria to pay a condolence call on the Yaniv family, two of whose sons were killed in a shooting attack on Sunday.

Esti and Shalom Yaniv spoke about their sons, who were motivated by the values of volunteerism and charity. They also spoke about the last family Sabbath that they all spent together just before the terrorist attack.

Hallel, 21, and Yagel, 19, were shot at point-blank range by a Palestinian terrorist while stuck in traffic in the Arab village of Huwara near where they lived.

“If they could, they would murder us all, but they want to uproot us. I say that our answer is to strike at them and deepen our roots,” the prime minister said.

“We have made a series of decisions recently, in the face of an international reality that is not a simple one, to deepen our roots, to deepen settlement and to expand our hold on our homeland. This is the battle in which we find ourselves. These two splendid youths fell in the battle for our homeland,” he added.

Referring to the Yanivs’ eviction from Gush Katif in the Gaza Strip during the 2005 disengagement, Netanyahu told the mother: “What you went through in that uprooting, if it depends on me, it will not happen again. On the contrary, there will be no uprooting, only planting.”

Sara Netanyahu said, “Unfortunately, I have been with more than a few bereaved families, and I always say how I have come to be acquainted with and hear about such marvelous children after they are gone.”

Sara Netanyahu visits the Yaniv family in Har Bracha on March 2, 2023. Photo by Kobi Gideon/GPO.

Hallel and Yagel’s younger sister Rachel told the Netanyahus how she wants to continue living in Har Bracha but with a sense of security.

“We have much to do regarding security,” the prime minister replied. “Unfortunately, we confirm again the saying that the Land of Israel is acquired through suffering, and there is no suffering greater than that which you have gone through. I sat shiva for one brother [Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu, who was killed in action during the 1976 Entebbe rescue raid], to sit for two adds to the terrible sorrow.”

“We have a mission, to increase security, to strike at the murderers. This is what we will do,” he said.

At the conclusion of the visit, the family went out with the Netanyahus to the balcony of their home, which overlooks the mountains of Samaria.

“This is what we are struggling over. I was here on these hills when there was nothing here. There has been a past here and there will be a future. Now we must get on with the future,” said the prime minister.


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