Today, Gilad Shalit is 25 years old. He's a man - by every definition of the word. By age, by experience, by maturity. He was last seen by his family, friends, and fellow soldiers, when he was 19 years old. There is a world of difference between who he was and who he is now.
I measure Gilad by Elie. I can't help it. Elie entered the army when he was 19, a few months ago, he turned 24. He's changed so much. I can't imagine what agonies I would feel if I had not been able to watch his transform, grow, become the man he is now.
Happy birthday, Gilad. We all want you to come home. We have not forgotten you, we will never forget you. May next year's birthday find you home with your family, far from the memories you have gained over the last years.