A 20-year-old Israeli soldier has filed a complaint with the Jerusalem District Police Department after an ultra-Orthodox man spat on her and her mother on Bar-Ilan Street in the capital.
Haleli Yitzhak, a resident of the Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood who works for the Israel Defense Forces publication "Bamahaneh" in Tel Aviv, was driving with her mother, Ronit, on her way to the central bus station. She said a young ultra-Orthodox man had suddenly approached their vehicle as they were stopped at a red light. He stuck his head inside the car, yelled and then forcefully spat on the women.
"A haredi man came toward our car and we immediately rolled all the windows up, and only the window on my mother's side was still half open,” Yitzhak said. “He screamed at us, 'Good women, good women,' and then spat everything he had at us. It struck my mother in the face, and then he aimed at me and spat. We stopped to try to understand what was going on and after a few minutes we went back to the junction. I found him and I tried taking his picture. He saw I was photographing him and ran away."
Yitzhak, who called the police and provided a description of the attacker, struggled to calm down after the experience.
"It is an indescribable humiliation," she said. "We weren't causing any sort of provocation. It's a feeling of powerlessness because we couldn't fend him off. It completely shakes your feeling of security. I'm a Jerusalemite from birth and know and respect the haredi population, but I will no longer go there alone and I will also try not to drive on that route anymore. The time has come to put an end to this. It happens too often."
The Jerusalem District Police Department released a statement saying, "A young haredi man stuck his head in the window of the car the soldier was driving and spat on her. Our patrol vehicles arrived at the scene and began searching for the man, but could not find him. We are using intelligence sources to try to find him."