Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Begin Center As A Media Center

From the Jerusalem Post:

THE GOVERNMENT Press Office catered to pluralistic palates at the media center which it set up at the Begin Heritage Center, within easy walking distance of the King David Hotel, where Obama and his staff are staying, and the Inbal Hotel, where the White House Press Corps has set up its own media center. The sumptuous buffet at a reception held on the night before Obama’s arrival ran the gamut from felafel to sushi to cheese cake, with a huge variety of other delicacies and a non-stop refilling of platters. In welcoming the visiting journalists who came not only from America but from many other parts of the world to cover the visit, GPO director Nitzan Chen, an eighth-generation Jerusalemite, advised them not to miss out on tasting Middle Eastern food, which he said was the best in the world.

The GPO set up a truly professional press center with every facility that electronic and print media journalists could want, including rows of work spaces equipped with laptops. It also organized tours of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, the Gaza border and the Castel Winery, to give journalists a feel for the varied panoply of Israeli life.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat was on hand to welcome the foreign media and, almost immediately after he spoke, there was a walking tour through the Muslim, Jewish and Christian Quarters of the Old City, with focus on places of religious significance.

The late Harry Hurwitz, who was the founder of the Begin Heritage Center and served as its executive director until his death in 2008, had been a newspaper editor in South Africa and had been very much involved in public diplomacy after settling in Israel. He would have been pleased and proud to see the BHC utilized as a media center.

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