Jerusalem, Israel - Jan. 23, 2018 - Skies were overcast with predictions of rain, for US Vice-President Pence and wife Karen Pence, on their last public appearance in Jerusalem, Israel. Jerusalem street closings for their visit caused traffic delays. Security was visible at many intersections and locations, especially in the Old City.
White tarps were spread to block views and layers of security barriers blocked off the entire Western Wall Plaza for hours on Tuesday, in preparation for the Pence visit.
Large books of Psalms were placed for the couple before they approached the Wall. Display cases were prepared with Jerusalem antiquities for them to see, after viewing a video from the Western Wall Heritage Foundation. Artifacts from the early 1900's, the contents of a pencil case with a seal and other items, were placed for Mrs. Pence. She was accompanied by three woman, two wives of Western Wall rabbis and its spokeswoman.
The Vice-President went and touched the Wall briefly, but his wife lingered longer. Security tents were in the plaza between the Wall and the motorcade vehicles. The Vice-President waited for his wife, before they left in separate vehicles. After hours of preparation, with cooperation of Israel and the US, the visit was a short one, 30 minutes from arrival to departure.
Mrs. Pence took the opportunity on the way out from Jaffa Gate to stop and do some shopping. A crowd gathered to watch, and remained until her vehicles left the area. Vice-President Pence went to meet with US Jerusalem Consulate staff.
More street closings, as skies darkened and rain, after threatening all day, started. The Vice-Presidential motorcade left with traffic backed up for blocks along his route and impatient motorists honking. Complaints of delays and of separate sections for men and women at the Western Wall, should not overshadow an important US Vice-Presidential visit to Jerusalem.
Also in the photo essay, Ambassador David Friedman and Jason Greenblatt were included in the White House entourage. Greenblatt's family were VIP guests of the Vice-Presidential visit to the Western Wall.