ISRAEL (VINnews) — It sounds hard to believe in 2022. But a young Israeli woman was verbally and physically assaulted by Charedi extremists for choosing to sit in the front row of a public bus.
Although she does not need an excuse, the woman says she had motion sickness and felt nauseous sitting in the back.
In an interview with Israeli news site Ynet, the resident of Elad said she was traveling to Jerusalem on the Kavim public bus line when the men began to abuse and ridicule her.
— Ynetnews (@ynetnews) August 1, 2022
A short video clip shows one of the assailants saying, “We are Jews and do not want to sit next to a woman,” and the other yelling at the driver, “If you are such a good driver, don’t let women sit in the front.”
The woman said that nobody on the bus attempted to defend her other than the driver. She said an extremist branch of Charedim have recently moved in and are terrorizing women in the city.
“I took a seat at the front of the bus because I suffer from car sickness and sitting in the back makes me nauseous,” she said. “At one point, a group of 20 men who belong to an extremist Charedi sect boarded the bus and ordered me to move to the back. When I refused, they began yelling at me, pulling my hair and finally one man took off his shoe and shoved his dirty sock in my face,” she said.
“I was very nervous and tried to call the police and had to get up for better phone service, but the men blocked my way. They yelled at me and called me a shiktza. I really believed something bad would happen to me,” she said.
The victim was quite traumatized. “The violence and humiliation were so bad, I do not wish it on anyone,” she said. “Even a three-year old called me a shiktza and told me to put clothes on. I came home shaking.”
The woman explained that she has no issue with Charedim in general, only people like these fanatical extremists.
“I come from a religious home and understand the sensibilities of the community and would never stand against the ultra-Orthodox. I am only opposed to the extremists who are harassing us on the streets or on public transportation and try to change our city.”