Jerusalem, Israel, is a place of contrasts.
At night the streets of the Old City have been quiet,
while during the day,
the noise of large construction projects fills the streets.
While loud BDSers (Boycott, Divestment and Sanction),
shout hate against anything Israeli,
Jon Medved of Our Crowd led a global conference
that attracted 3,000 international participants.
The technology conferences are too numerous to attend or even list.
For two days in Tel Aviv this week, the tourism conference
is again attracting eager overseas visitors to expand their ties with Israel.
While outside on the streets “random” stabbings and attacks go on,
inside Beit Hanassi, the Israeli President’s residence,
President Reuven Rivlin and Justice Minister Ayelet Sheked
swore in 7 new Qadis, Islamic Shariah Law Judges.
The official reception was held in the same large hall
where all important diplomatic visitors are greeted.
Family and friends of the new Muslim judges
after being served a dairy buffet of sweets,
were seated for the occasion.
This week there was another swearing-in ceremony,
a military ceremony at the Kotel, the Western Wall Plaza.
Thousands of family and friends gathered
to witness the newest paratroopers,
who after weeks of arduous training,
receive their new rifle along with a new bible.
Muslims who swear in to IDF receive a Koran.
While the news may seem dismal and negative,
this Muslim couple who found themselves in the midst
of hundreds of armed Israeli soldiers
seem much more concerned with getting a good selfie.
I walked home alone in the dark from the Old City.
It took awhile as I stopped twice to talk with friends,
but two other things got my attention.
When there is a “security incident”
these teens take to the streets to give out Israeli flags,
post signs and sing,
Am Yisrael Chai,
the People of Israel live!
It is a leap year on the Jewish calendar,
with two Adars, an extra month until Purim,.
Purim celebrates when Haman tried to kill the Jews.
Hamantaschen are already displayed in store windows.
They tried to kill us, they failed,
so let’s eat something sweet.
A few of the cycles and contrasts
happening daily on the real Jerusalem streets.