Government Statement on Space Shuttle Columbia
government and people share the sorrow of the Ramon family, and
of the families of the other astronauts, who perished today (Saturday),
February 1, 2003, in the space shuttle Columbia disaster.
government sends condolences on behalf of the entire Jewish people
to Rona Ramon and the Ramon family, the families of the American
astronauts, US President George W. Bush, and the entire American
Times such as
these strengthen the Israeli and American peoples’ common fate,
identity and values, and shared vision. Ilan Ramon and his comrades
aboard the space shuttle fell on the altar of science, progress
and our common aspiration for a better life on this planet.
bow their heads in the face of this terrible tragedy.
In memory of
Ilan Ramon and his fellow astronaut heroes who perished on the space
shuttle Columbia, Israeli and US flags will be lowered to half-mast
tomorrow at the entrance to the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem.
US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer will attend a short ceremony
at the start of tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting; Prime Minister Sharon
and Ambassador Kurtzer will address the meeting.
* * *
George W. Bush today (Saturday), February 1, 2003, telephoned Prime
Minister Ariel Sharon and told him that today is a tragic day for
both the families of the astronauts and for science. US President
Bush said that he knows that a brave Israeli citizen – Colonel Ilan
Ramon – was on board the space shuttle Columbia, and delivered the
condolences and support of the entire American people, as well as
his personal condolences and support, to the Ramon family, at this
Sharon delivered his sincerest condolences to the American people
and the astronauts’ families, and added that is at moments such
as these, that the hearts of the American and Israeli peoples beat
as one. "Let us pray together and support each other,"