Yehonatan Levy, the haredi father who was assaulted and humiliated by an Arab mob in Jerusalem’s Old City Monday, described the ordeal in a television interview Wednesday morning, on Channel 20.
The video that shows Levy and his two sons emerging from an alleyway has been widely circulated and photos of his sons crying in fear as he walks onward, silent and grim-faced, were disseminated worldwide by news agencies.
Levy said that the event began several minutes earlier, as he and his sons were making their usual route toward the Western Wall, in honor of Sukkot. They were initially accosted by women, he said, and these women were then joined by men. He described being kicked and spat upon. His son’s kippah was knocked to the ground and when the father tried to pick it up, it was kicked away from him three times.
Watch: Father and children attacked by Muslim mob
The father and his young sons were made to walk a gauntlet of screaming Muslims, he recounted.
“I understood that there were no security people, and it made no sense to try and go back because they had already closed in on us from the back, so I understood that I have to go forward.
“My younger son, Nathan, was telling me – ‘Dad, they’ll stab us in the end, no one cares.’” The children, he said, are aware of Arab terrorism and were afraid that they, too, would be physically assaulted.
“It started with kicking and spitting,” he recalled, “and then a young man motioned to me to approach him. I was certain that he wanted to help me somehow.”
However, when he approached the young man who called him – the man spat in his face.
Asked how he responded when he was spat upon, Levy said that he did not feel that he could do anything except walk on.
“It’s not like I entered the Gaza Strip,” he explained. “It’s my regular route to theKotel. We had passed through a police checkpoint, and no one told us there was any danger. It’s a really, really terrible feeling,” he said. “And you know what the thing that really bothered me was? That there was no one there who cared – not one among all the people who were there, not even the shop owners, or thejewelers – men, women… who cared. Not one person who would stop this horror, with children screaming.”