Israeli Women Fight Bus Segregation

The confrontation between Orthodox Jews in Israel and more secular citizens is taking on shades of the American civil-rights movement. Women are making a point of sitting at the front of buses in protest of pressure by Orthodox Jews to segregate public transportation. A court ruled a year ago that forced segregation on buses was illegal, but that such an arrangement could be operated for a year on a voluntary basis. However, tensions have increased as Orthodox Jews have outgrown their traditionally insular communities and the number of segregated bus lines has grown. The issue has become a flashpoint in Israel, with repeated protests and counterprotests over segregation, and clashes in Jerusalem last week.