Prime Minister Modi in Israel: Warm Hugs and Agreements

Prime Minister Modi in Israel: Warm Hugs and Agreements

The Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi

was in Israel from July 4- 7, 2017.

 The royal warm greetings and government attention was unprecedented,

starting with a large airport reception

with hugs and flags and music and lots of officials.

President Reuven Rivlin hugs PM Modi at Beit Hanasi

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin greeted Modi

outside Beit Hanasi, the Israeli President’s Residence,

breaking protocol with a hug instead of handshake.

Walking red carpet into Beit Hanasi PM Modi of Indie

Both men then walked the red carpet to the residence,

Modi signing guest book with President Reuven Rivlin watching

and Prime Minister Modi signed the guest book.

President Rivlin and PM Modi shake hands after signing guest book in Jerusalem Israel

Time for another warm handshake moment,

In Jerusalem Israel India Prime Minister Modi signed official guest book

after the warm message.

Official meeting of Israel President Rivlin and PM India Modi in Jerusalem, Israel

Media crowded into the official reception room.

Most of the press left for the next stop on the full itinerary,

President Reuven Rivlin introduces head of Israeli Army to PM Modi of India in Jerusalem, Israel

and missed the commander-in-chief of the Israeli Army

Gadi Eizenkot, arriving to shake hands with Modi.

Then at the King David Hotel,

Lunch table at King David Hotel for PM Modi of India and those officials signing agreements.

the table was set for a lunch meeting between

the Prime Ministers and delegation officials.

Media ready for speeches of Israel and India Prime Ministers at King David Hotel i

The lunch went longer than scheduled

but the cameras were ready

Israeli government MK Kara and Stelinlitz at King David Hotel for India Israel press conference

while Israeli Ministers chatted and also waited.

PM Modi and Netanyahu enter room for press conference at King David Hotel Jerusalem Israel

The Prime Ministers made their entrance,

Prime Ministers Israel and India at press conference

and gave their speeches

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Prime Minister Modi of India hug in Jerusalem after signing of agreements

followed by more hugs.

There were numerous jokes,

of this warm and hugging visit,Sign for Modi in Israel

and of Modi in Israel.

Photos of the Prime Ministers wading into the sea,

signing agreements, hugging, and

meeting terror survivor Moishe Holtzman

made some news reports.

They also went to see the Cochin Synagogue exhibit in the Israel Museum.

The attention showered on the Indian Prime Minister,

was more than I have seen for any recent international visitor.

 Israel’s Prime Minister acted as host and tour guide.

The love, respect, and worship, that the Indian visitors

showed for their Prime Minister was impressive.

The extensive agreements that were signed have great potential

for both countries and beyond,

Globe photo shopped over bald head in photo of important press conference

 the whole world should be applauding.

(Thanks to my friend Ron for photo-shopping the globe here.)

After all the waiting for the official ceremonies,

the tallest man in the room was seated in the front row,

and his bald head blocked my camera view.

Jokes, hugs and smiles,

the potential of this visit must be acknowledged.

Additional photos: King David Hotel  and Beit Hanasi.

Shimon Peres: World Leaders in Jerusalem, Israel

Usually the streets are busy on Friday mornings,

especially before an approaching holiday,

but in Jerusalem, Israel, this was no regular Friday morning.

streets blocked

Main streets were closed to traffic,

even some schools had to close,

as the main Route #1 into Jerusalem

was reserved for the personal motorcade of

US President Barak Obama.

The funeral for former President Shimon Peres

was not to be a usual funeral either.

The state funeral at Har Herzl

crowd at funeral

brought together an array of international leaders,

like Jerusalem or the world has ever seen.

Barak Obama at funeral

President Obama flew in and out of Israel

for the funeral in Har Herzl cemetery.

Funeral Shimon Peres

President Reuven Rivlin spoke

funeral Peres Benjamin Netanyahu

as did Prime Minister Netanyahu,

Bill Clinton Benjamin Netanyahu

 former US President Bill Clinton,

and current US President Barak Obama.

funeral Shimon Peres

The entire funeral event was live-streamed around the world.

kippa on heads of president Rivlin and Obama

Imagine all those world leaders wearing kippot on their heads,

Prince Charles and John Kerry

Prince Charles even had a special one,

not like John Kerry’s plain black style.

What will happen next as the old year 5776 ends?

Yes, it was not your usual Friday in Jerusalem.

so I had to share more than a simple Shabbat Shalom,

Mahahumd Abbas at funeral in Jeusalem

Was that Mahmoud Abbas shaking hands in the front row

in Jerusalem, Israel, today?

One thing for sure,

Shimon Peres proved that most anything is possible.

If you hang in there long enough,

you can become a president.

During Operation Protective Edge in 2014,

while Peres was still in office,

young children from the south were invited for

a fun day camp at Beit Hanasi,

the Israeli President’s house.

This clown put a dove on the President’s head,

Performers at Beit Hanasi put dove on hear of President Shimon Peres

those children should remember the moment forever.

Peres pursued peace, and for at least one moment

the bird of peace was truly upon his head.

A solemn day, but

I like to remember the great video recorded after his presidency.

Now it is time to prepare for Shabbat,

time to get back to “normal.”

שבת שלום

שנה טובה

Shabbat shalom

Happy New Year.

Jerusalem Funeral of Murdered Frenchmen: Photos and Flags

Today the large French and Israeli flags were coming down.

flags FRance

They had been hung for a show of unity with France,

as Israeli leaders,

along with French Ecology Minister Segolene Royal,

joined thousands of mourners in attending the funeral yesterday

at Givat Shaul Cemetery in Jerusalem, Israel.

closed Highway

The road leading to the cemetery was closed

 and traffic was backing up with unhappy drivers.

police motorcycle

But the special free shuttle buses had a police escort

and went around the stopped vehicles.

female solders

Security lined the roads

cemetery

and much of the cemetery.

water

Free water bottles were piled high in several locations.

photo media

International media and TV cameras were set.

crowd at funeral

Crowds tried to get past guards to enter,

but only those with invitations were allowed to pass.

talit for funeral

Here a family member was carrying a talit,

which is used to cover the body before burial.

French signs

There were a few signs

image funeral crowd

in the crowd,

I am signs

one with the faces and names of four men murdered,

because they were Jews,

Yohan Cohen,

Yoav Hattab,

Philippe Braham,

Francois-Michel Saada,

Israeli flag at funeral

and Israeli flags.

people inside funeral

Immediate mourners and dignitaries were behind barriers,

Frenchmen funeral

inside other barriers.

Sephardi rabbi kiss hand

Everyone rose when the Chief Rabbi entered,

and many stopped him to kiss his hand.

scene of Funeral

One by one Zaka members carried in the men,

murdered in terror attack in Paris, France on  erev Shabbat.

funeral speaking

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat escorted a family member,

who lit a flame and spoke.

The Chief Rabbis,

Israel President Reuven Rivlin

Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin,

funeral French security

French Minister Segolene Royal,

Benjamin Netanyahu speaking behind bullet proof glass

and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

spoke in a protected area where only a special photographer

could get a photo without distorted reflections.

funeral French crowd

It was a sad day,

funeral

for all involved.

Inside the main area it did not seem like so many people came,

crowd at Givat Shaul cemetery

but upon leaving it was obvious that thousands could not get in.

They filled the streets as they filed out slowly.

I am Charles

Waiting shuttle buses returned us to town,

where more signs lined the Jerusalem, Israel streets.

Sadly, Jerusalem has had large funerals before

and has learned how to prepare for the huge crowds.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if this was the last one

for innocent people murdered by terrorists?