Long and Short of VP Mike Pence Jerusalem Visit

Long and Short of VP Mike Pence Jerusalem Visit

As always there is much happening

on these Jerusalem, Israel streets.

However, local news was overshadowed by

Knesset sign with US flag for Pence visit

the arrival of US Vice-President Mike Pence.

Flags on main streets,

US and Israeli flags on street near Knesset

while large flags, lined his motorcade route.

The visit was for two days.

Pence arrival in Jerusalem

Video cameras were ready at the official welcome

by the Prime Minister’s Office early Monday morning.

Honor guard for Pence arrival at PMO

An honor guard was getting ready for red carpet

greeting of the Tourist of Week.

The Vice-Presidential vehicle pulled in

VP Pence and Israel PM Netanyahu

and Vice-President Pence lined up with

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and

Head of State Protocol Meron Reuben,

surrounded by the watchful eyes of security.

View of arrival on Pence in Israel at PMO

After the White House press entered,

this was best photo I could get over the crowd.

The entire event took minutes,

and everyone went home.

Then in afternoon,

Security outside Knesset for Pence, end of motorcade

the Vice-Presidential motorcade arrived at the Knesset.

Before the Vice-President’s Knesset speech,

Thank you banner outside Knesset before US VP Pence spoke plenary session

supporters with thank you welcome banners lined the road.

Outside Knesset security watching people hold thank you banners for Pence

Security seemed a bit confused,

but did not complain about a positive demonstration.

Tuesday morning as I was walking near Mamilla Mall,

Trump bus in Jerusalem

I finally got my photo, not only of the Trump bus,

Bus painted to welcome US VP Pence to Jerusalem

but also one of the Welcome Pence buses.

Slow going from blocked streets and security,

was theme over the time of Pence visit.

But waiting in security line for the

Kotel, Western Wall,

Display boxes for Pence visit to Kotel

I was able to see these two display boxes,

for the Pences’ visit, carried by security,

also go through security checks.

It is hard to describe the layers of security.

View of white cloth covering view to Western Wall for Pence visit

 Routes to he Kotel Plaza were draped in white,

to block all views.

Pence visit view of Kotel

The entire area was closed to the public for hours.

Since the weather forecast was for rain,

tents and covers were constructed.

A small platform was constructed for media.

Kotel birds on stones

I took advantage of higher and closer spot to admire the birds.

However, the main event was eclipsed,

Male photographers at Western Wall

by female journalists who did not like being behind the men.

Once it was evident it would not be raining,

the white covering was removed.

As a short female photographer who is often blocked,

I was satisfied to stand on a chair supported by the barrier,

but others around me were furious.

More upsetting to me, was to see security blocking

the official White House press travelling with the VP.

White House press trying to get in to Western Wall area for Pence visit

They only had a few minutes to get in position,

we had been waiting for over two hours already.

On entering,

Pence with leaders of Western Wall Heritage Foundation

Vice-President and Karen Pence stopped to watch a video

about the Western Wall, giving

Western Wall as VP Pence arrived

 security and White House cameras time to get in place.

Pence at Western Wall with rabbis

Pence looked at a large book of Tehilim, Psalms,

with the two rabbis from the Western Wall.

VP Pence Jerusalem Western Wall

Blocking my shot (only can use the word now,

with so much insane security all around,

who knows how much trouble I would be in)

was a tall security guy in purple shirt!

Close up of VP Mike Pence at Western Wall

I got the photo, plus

 another 400, if you are interested,

Karen Pence at Western Wall with women saying psalm

but turned my attention to Karen Pence.

She was accompanied first to the display case,

then to another large Tehilim book,

by the two rabbis’ wives and Western Wall spokeswoman.

Karen Pence at Western Wall on visit to Jerusalem

Karen Pence stood alone,

and spent a much longer time

with her hand on the stones of the Wall.

Security for Pence visit to Western Wall

The entire time from when motorcade entered the plaza

until they raced away was 30 minutes.

Pence visit to Western Wall security on roof tops

From rooftops,

Western Wall for Pence visit

to the roads leading to the Old City,

vehicles and pedestrians were stopped.

Karen Pence shops in Arab shuk near Jaffa Gate crowd gathers until she leaves

A crowd gathered near Jaffa Gate as

Karen Pence stopped to do a bit of shopping,

before heading back home.

As I finally headed home,

Streets closed for VP Pence visit in Jerusalem

the road to the King David Hotel was still blocked.

Oh, so different from Vice-President Biden’s 2010 visit.

Azzza Street without cars at sunset on wet day

After the motorcade passed on the way to the airport,

it was getting dark on wet Jerusalem streets.

Some roads were still empty

while others were filled with blocked traffic.

The predicted rain waited and began to fall,

but did not spoil the visit.

Lots of waiting for events lasting minutes,

the significance of which we can only guess,

not your usual week in Jerusalem,

or maybe it really was.

100 Years – Israel Going & Growing

100 Years – Israel Going & Growing

From Jerusalem, Australia, and New Zealand,

government leaders traveled to Beer Sheva

for the 100th-year reenactment of the charge

of the Light Horse Brigade,

Australian soldiers in Beer Sheva 100 years

when those brave Aussie horsemen defeated the Turks

and turned the tide in World War I for the Allies.

Then Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

went to London for the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration,

which called for a Jewish Homeland to be established in Palestine.

For those who study the Bible,

these two events 100 years ago were of great significance.

Christian Zionists were in Jerusalem, Israel,

this week to commemorate with Israelis.

Meanwhile,

outside the PM’s official residence in Jerusalem, Israel,

there was a protest tent and hunger strike.

Protest outside of Prime Minister's house in Jerusalem

Leaders from Judea and Samaria want

more services and better roads as promised.

Special programs around 100 years since Balfour

Israel Knesset building flags, no people

have been held at the Knesset.

Finally back in session after long break,

the Knesset is the scene of multiple sessions daily.

MK Avraham Neguise

One committee headed by MK Avraham Neguise

heard testimonies of recent growing antisemitism.

From left to right, wearing translation earphones, are

Knesset committee on antisemitism German, Austria and EU speak

the Ambassadors of Germany, the European Union, and Austria.

Also on the road this week is

President Reuven Rivlin, who was in Spain

meeting with Jewish leaders, and was hosted

by King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia at a state dinner.

100 years ago Jews were allowed to enter Spain

after being expelled in 1492.

Last week at Beit Hanasi, the President’s official residence,

New security at Beit Hanasi Jerusalem

new security covers were down.

Protesters from South Tel Aviv outside Beit Hanasi for Supreme Court new President

Loud protesters from South Tel Aviv

took to the streets shouting,

in stark contrast to what was happening inside.

Outgoing Israeli Supreme Court President Miriam Naor

Two female Israeli Supreme Court Presidents kiss at Beit Hanasi ceremony

kissed and hugged incoming President Esther Hayut.

Israel Supreme Court Judges at Beit Hanasi

Israeli Supreme Court Judges sat on the side

Front row dignitaries at Supreme Court swearing in ceremony new President

as former Supreme Court Presidents sat with

with other government leaders.

After the loud Knesset opening,

Mew Israeli Supreme Court President

this dignified, hand shaking,

Herzog and Hayut kiss at Beit Hanasi ceremony

kissing and hugging event did not make international news,

but Israel media had live coverage.

The room was as crowded as it was for President Trump’s visit.

Israeli head of police at Beit Hanasi

The Israeli Chief of Police did not seem

thrilled while he waited for the official photos of

Official pose of new and former Israel Supreme Court Presidents with President Rivlin and Justice Minister Shaked

the present and past Supreme Court Presidents

with President Rivlin and Justice Minister Shaked.

close up of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

But even the Prime Minister had to sit and wait

Official photo full court from new Israeli Supreme Court ceremony

for the expanded official Supreme Court photo.

One more of the many memorable scenes at Beit Hanasi

Salim Joubran at Beit Hanasi as he retires from Israel Supreme Court

was that of recently retired Supreme Court Judge Salim Joubran,

who was interviewed after the ceremony for Israeli TV.

He was the Arab Judge who oversaw the last Israeli election.

Who would have imagined any of these things 100 years ago?

Palestine was a barren desert under Ottoman rule.

Today as we still await the rainy season,

the only umbrella I saw out this week

Umbrella rain statute in Jerusalem Mamilla Mall

was on this art piece in Mamilla Mall.

And as always it seems,

Jerusalem Israel cultural festival

 there is another new cultural festival ahead.

Who could have imagined any of this 100 years ago?

Who could have imagined it 70 years ago?

A short video, part of German Ambassador’s testimony in Knesset:

 More on legislation here,

but this is getting way too long, as always.

The three millionth tourist for 2017,

entered Israel, receiving a royal welcome,

they will certainly see for themselves,

what is happening on the Jerusalem, Israel streets.