Remembering Tomorrow 2011

It is too hot to be outside.

The news of more terror attacks from Egypt are distressing.

The reports of the Egyptian presidential results are depressing.

The fourth Israeli Presidential Conference – Facing Tomorrow 2012,

opens at the International Convention Center in Jerusalem tomorrow.

So today seemed like a good time to remember last year’s conference.

"picture Shakira", "image Shakira", photo Shakira"

At the opening press conference President Shimon Peres called Shakira 

“Sharika”…I still have to stop and think, so as not to repeat the mistake.

"picture Sarah Silverman", "photo Sarah Silverman", "image Sarah Silverman"

On the opening night, Sarah Silverman stole the show,

showing that she was a comedian with brains.

"picture Jonathon Sacks'" ,"photo Rabbi Sacks","image Chief Rabbi Sacks"

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks called anti-Semitism a virus:

the oldest virus of hate that is spread today by the internet.

"photo Rabbi Sacks", "image chief rabbi Sacks", "picture J Sacks"

“Holocaust happens when language debases happenings,” he warned.

History shows hate begins with Jews, but it does not end with them.

A year later his words are even more insightful.

"picture Peres", "image Pres Peres",

I spotted President Shimon Peres more than once

moving quickly from session to session.

"picture Jimmy Wales", "photo Jimmy Wales", Image Jimmy Wales"

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales was a featured speaker.

It is still distressing to me that some Arabic entries found in Wikipedia,

  are very different from the English ones.

In Arabic, the only connection of the Jews to the “Wailing Wall”

is that they tried to buy it twice and failed.

"photo Dr Ruth", "image Doctor Ruth", "picture Dr Ruth'

Popular ‘Dr Ruth’ Westheimer often got stopped in the halls.

She is on the schedule again this year.. and yes, she really is short.

"picture lab students', photo HU students", "image lab coats'

A favorite of mine were the students from the Hebrew University labs.

  Those doing studies on the blind loved to show

their sensor invention that makes a walking stick obsolete.

Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu was one

of the speakers at the conclusion of the conference.

At some popular sessions there were lines waiting to enter,

and once inside the room there was standing room only.

Lucky for me Mohammad Dajani got up and walked out 

"photo Nir Barkat", "image Jerusalem mayor'. Picture mayor Jerusalem"

 when Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat spoke of his vision for Jerusalem,

so I got a seat in the crowded room.

"photo Bibi" , "image Bibi netanyahu', "picture Bibi"

Facing Tomorrow… more on Tomorrow 2012 tomorrow.

Facing Tomorrow, Opening Acts

The Israeli Presidential Conference 2011, ‘Facing Tomorrow’

held in the Jerusalem International Convention Center,

officially started in the evening  of June 21, 2011.

For the first presidential conference, US President George W Bush

was among the world leaders in attendance.

Streets were closed, and no one could avoid the commotion.

This year the presidents of Israel, Dominican Republic and Macedonia

just did not draw the same level of attention from the real streets.

However, photographers packed into a special opening press conference 

to get photos of international Columbian singing star

Shakira and her meeting with President Shimon Peres.

Peres spoke first, quoting from her songs, calling her an ambassador

  of young people and praised her for raising her wonderful voice.

In his opening remarks, President Peres called her “Sharika;”

everyone laughed–too bad I keep repeating the mistake. 

Shakira was presented with a special necklace

that required some help put on.

By establishing schools in poor rural areas, Shakira began a program

to break the cycle of poverty and violence

through education in her native Columbia.

As a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador,

her message of the positive effects of early education is commendable;

perhaps we should add, as long as that education done not include teaching hate.

The evening plenary was held in the large auditorium,

where the Shakira interview

was projected on two large screens, one on each side of the stage.

Shakira did not sing, but repeated her earlier message on education.

Her shoes were not very practical for the Jerusalem streets,

but her stay was brief so there was not much time for strolling around.

American comedian Sarah Silverman was the next act.

She came across bright and witty in her interview.

She tried to talk of a better tomorrow by using solar power.

Her responses to questions were quick and clever,

without any vulgar language… and the audience loved it.


1000 pictures over three nights and two days has taken hours to edit.

It was impossible  to get down to one post of twenty photos;

it was easy to get too many good pictures of just Sharika,

NO… Shakira!

 More photos  on The Real Jerusalem Streets Facebook Page.