Submitted by Philip Power
In the British West Indies much of the early capital to finance White slavery came from Sephardic Jews from Holland. They provided credit, machinery and shipping facilities. In the 1630s Dutch Jews had been deeply involved in the enslavement of the Irish, financing their transport to slave plantations in the tropics. By the 1660s, this combination of Jewish finance and White slave labor made the British island colony of Barbados the richest in the empire. The island’s value, in terms of trade and capital exceeded that of all other British colonies combined. (John Oldmixon, The British Empire in America, vol. 2, p. 186.)
Of the fact that the wealth of Barbados was founded on the backs of White slave labor there can be no doubt. White slave laborers from Britain and Ireland were the mainstay of the sugar colony. Until the mid-1640s there were few Blacks in Barbados. George Downing wrote to John Winthrop, the colonial governor of Massachusetts in 1645, that planters who wanted to make a fortune in the British West Indies must procure White slave labor “out of England” if they wanted to succeed. (Elizabeth Donnan, Documents Illustrative of the History of the Slave Trade to America, pp. 125-126. In Hoffman, They Were White and They Were Slaves p. 12.)
The English traffic in slaves in the first half of the seventeenth century was solely in White slaves. The English had no slave base in West Africa, as did the Dutch Jews. Moreover, Dutch Jews were not only bankers and shipping magnates but slave masters and plantation owners themselves. Jews were forbidden by English law to own White Protestant slaves, although in practice this was not uniformly enforced. Irish slaves were allowed to the Jewish slaves but were regarded by them as intractable. Hence the Jews became prime movers behind the African slave trade and the importation of Negro slaves into the New World. (Dalby Thomas, An Historical Account of the Rise and Growth of the British West Indies, pp. 36-37, and G. Merrill, ‘The Role of the Sephardic Jews in the British Caribbean Area in the Seventeenth Century,’ Caribbean Studies, vol. 4, no. 3, 1964-65, pp. 32-49.)
Hundreds of thousands of White slaves were kidnapped off the streets and roads of Great Britain in the course of more than one hundred and fifty years and sold to captains of slave ships in London known as “White Guineamen.” Ten thousand Whites were kidnapped from England in the year 1670 alone.’
They Were White and They Were Slaves
The Untold History of the Enslavement of Whites in Early America
Michael A. Hoffman
- Mainly Britain
White Slavery in Ancient and Medieval Europe
Among the ancient Greeks, despite their tradition of democracy, the enslavement of fellow Whites – even fellow Greeks – was the order of the day. Aristotle considered White slaves as things. The Romans also had no compunctions against enslaving Whites who they too termed “a thing” (res). In his agricultural writings, the first century B.C. Roman philosopher Varro labeled White slaves as nothing more than “tools that happened to have voices” (instrumenti vocale). Cato the Elder, discoursing on plantation management, proposed that White slaves when old or ill should be discarded along with worn-out farm implements.
Julius Caesar enslaved as many as one million Whites from Gaul, some of whom were sold to the slave dealers who followed his victorious legions (William D. Phillips, Jr., Slavery from Roman Times to the Early Transatlantic Trade, p.18).
In A.D. 319 the “Christian” emperor of Rome, Constantine, ruled that if an owner whipped his White slave to death “he should not stand in any criminal accusation if the slave dies; and all statutes of limitations and legal interpretations are hereby set aside.”
The Romans enslaved thousands of the early White inhabitants of Great Britain who were known as “Angles,” from which we derive the term “Anglo-Saxon” as a description of the English race. In the sixth century Pope Gregory the First witnessed blond-haired, blue-eyed English boys awaiting sale in a slave market in Rome. Inquiring of their origin, the Pope was told they were Angles. Gregory replied, “Non Angli, sed Angeli” (“Not Angles, but Angels”).
Arabs and the Traffic in White Slaves
The fate of the hundreds of thousands of White slaves sold to the Arabs was described in one Spanish text as “atrocissima et ferocissima“ (most atrocious and harsh). The men were worked to death as galley slaves. The women, girls and boys were used as prostitutes.
White males had their genitals mutilated in castration attempts – bloody procedures of incredible brutality which most of the White men who were forced to submit did not survive, judging from the high prices White eunuchs commanded throughout the Middle Eastern slave markets.
Escape from North Africa and the Middle East was almost impossible and those White slaves who were caught trying to flee were punished by having their noses and ears cut off, or worse.
“The Norwegian slave trader was an important enough figure to appear in the 12th century tale of Tristan… Icelandic literature also provides numerous references to raiding in Ireland as a source for slaves…
“Norwegian Vikings made slave raids not only against the Irish and Scots (who are often called Irish in Norse sources) but also against Norse settlers in Ireland or the Scottish Isles or even in Norway itself… Slave trading was a major commercial activity of the Viking Age.” (Ruth Mazo Karras, Slavery and Society in Medieval Scandinavia, p. 49.) The children of White slaves in Iceland were routinely murdered en masse (Karras, p. 52).
White Slavery in Early America
In the Calendar of State Papers of 1701, we read of a protest over the “encouragement to the spiriting away of Englishmen without their consent and selling them for slaves, which hath been a practice very frequent and known by the name of kidnapping.”
In the British West Indies, plantation slavery was instituted as early as 1627. In Barbados by the 1640s there were an estimated 25,000 slaves, of whom 21,700 were White. (“Some Observations on the Island of Barbados,” Calendar of State Papers, Colonial Series, America and West Indies, p. 528.)
It is worth noting that while White slaves were worked to death in Barbados, there were Caribbean Indians brought from Guiana to help propagate native foodstuffs who were well-treated and received as free persons by the wealthy planters.
* * *
“White indentured servants were employed and treated, incidentally, exactly like slaves.” (Morley Ayearst, The British West Indies, p. 19.)
“The many gradations of unfreedom among Whites made it difficult to draw fast lines between any idealized free White worker and a pitied or scorned servile Black worker… in labor-short seventeenth and eighteenth-century America the work of slaves and that of White servants were virtually interchangeable in most areas.” (David R. Roediger, The Wages of Whiteness: Race and the Making of the American Working Class, p. 25.)
A Holocaust Against the White Poor
In 1723 the Waltham Act was passed which classified more than 200 minor offenses such as stealing a rabbit from an aristocrat or breaking up his fishpond, a crime punishable by hanging. Starving youths, fourteen years old, were strung-up on Tyburn gallows for stealing as little as one sheep. When their bodies were cut down their parents had to fight over them with agents of the Royal College of Physicians who had been empowered by the courts to use their remains for laboratory dissection.
The English historian William Cobbett stated in 1836,
“The starving agricultural laborers of southern England are worse off than American negroes.”
When in 1834 English farm workers in Dorset tried to form a union in order to “preserve ourselves, our wives and our children from starvation” they were shipped into slavery in Australia for this “crime.” The situation of White factory workers was no better. Robert Owen declared in 1840, “The working classes of Great Britain are in a worse condition than any slaves in any country, in any period of the world’s history.”
In 19th century England tens of thousands of White children were employed as slave laborers in British coal mines. Little White boys, seven years old, were harnessed like donkeys to coal carts and ordered to drag them through mine shafts. In 1843, White children aged four were working in the coal pits. In old English cemeteries can be seen epitaphs on grave stones like one which reads,
“William Smith, aged eight years, Miner, died Jan. 3, 1841.”
The root of the holocaust against the White yeomanry of Britain lies in the history of the land swindles perpetrated against them in the late 12th and early 13th centuries.
The Factory System
[Rev. Richard] Oastler was publicly thanked by a delegation of English laborers at a meeting in York “for his manly letters to expose the conduct of those pretended philanthropists and canting hypocrites who travel to the West Indies in search of slavery, forgetting there is a more abominable and degrading system of slavery at home.” (Cecil Driver, Tory Radical: The Life of Richard Oastler, pp. 36-55; lnglis, p. 260.)
* * *
White children worked up to sixteen hours a day and “During that period the doors were locked; children – and most of the mill workers were still children – were allowed out only ‘to go to the necessary’… In some factories it was forbidden to open my of the windows; cotton fluff was everywhere, including on he children’s food, but often, as they had to stand all day, they were too fatigued to have any appetite… The (child) apprentices who were on night shift might stay on it for as long as four or five years… although they were provided with dinner at midnight, the machinery did not stop.”
(lnglis, pp. 80, 163, 164, 262).
* * *
“In Bleak House Dickens was to satirize evangelical ‘telescopic philanthropy’ in the person of Mrs. Jellyby, a do-gooder so absorbed in the welfare of the African natives of Borrioboola-Gha that she fails to notice her own family sinking into ruin. This was precisely Carlyle’s point: with Irish… dying in ditches… it was the worst sort of rose-pink sentimentalism to worry oneself about West Indian Negroes.” (Eugene R. August, introduction to Thomas Carlyle’s The Nigger Question, Crofts Classics edition, p. xvii.)
In the late 1830s William Dodd began his exhaustive research into the condition of the English poor. He estimated that in the year 1846 alone, 10,000 English workers, many of them children, had been mangled and mutilated by machinery or otherwise disabled for life. They were abandoned and received no compensation of any kind. Many died of their injuries.
* * *
“Young children are allowed to clean the machinery, actually while it is in motion; and consequently the fingers, hands and arms are frequently destroyed in a moment. I have seen the whole of the arm, from the tip of the fingers to above the elbow, chopped into mince-meat, the cog-wheels cutting through the skin, muscles and in some places, through the bone… in one instance every limb but one was broken.” (William Dodd, The Factory System Illustrated, pp. 21-22.)
“Accidents were often due to… children being set to clean machinery while it was still in motion. The loss of two or three fingers was not exceptional. There were more serious accidents… such as that reported by a Stockport doctor in 1840 of a girl caught by the hair and scalped from the nose to the back of the head. The manufacturer gave her five shillings. She died in the workhouse.” (Cruickshank, p. 51.)
Nineteenth century factory worker William Dodd stated,
“Petition after petition has been sent to the two houses of Parliament, to the prime minister, and to the Queen, concerning this unfortunate class of British subjects, but without effect. Had they only been black instead of white, their case would have been taken into consideration long ago.”
* * *
Ruth Holland, commenting on the participation of New England factory owners in the cause of abolitionism and rights for negroes in the south, observed, “It’s a little difficult to believe that northern mill owners, who were mercilessly abusing [White] children for profit, felt such pure moral indignation at [negro] slavery.” (Mill Child, p. 28.)
In May, 1839, a boy, William Wilson, was ordered to clean a flue that was still hot from a fire that had recently been extinguished. “He was grievously burned” and hospitalized “for weeks” during which he was described by a care-giver as a “meek, gentle, little creature… the tears started in his eyes when he was spoken kindly to.” (Society for Superseding the Necessity of Climbing Boys, The Trade of Chimney Sweeping, pp. 2-20.)
* * *
“When Parliament abolished Negro slavery in 1808, the flues of its august chambers were being climbed by boys four, five and six years of age, sold… to chimney sweepers for prices ranging from a few shillings to two guineas – the smaller the child, the better the price.” (George L. Phillips, p. 3.)
* * *
Samuel Roberts, in an 1834 essay on the boys used as chimney-sweeps, addressed his indignation toward the upper-class British females who met in their sumptuously-appointed parlors to weep with tender-hearted solicitude over the latest accounts from America of oppression to Negroes, while in the next room, scarred and burned five year-old English boys enslaved as human brooms, were being forced up the lady’s chimney without a thought for their welfare:
There is a race of human beings in this country, the Chimney Sweepers’ Climbing Boys… which… is more oppressed than the negroes in either the West Indian Islands, or in North America… These objects are all young and helpless. Their employment is ten-fold more horrible than that of any attaching to the (negro) slaves… A far greater number of them are crippled, and rendered deformed for life. A far greater proportion of them die in consequence of hard usage, while the horrible deaths from suffocation, burning, and other accidents, are in this case, beyond measure more numerous. And all this at home, within our knowledge, before our eyes… in our very houses… How many of these poor infants… arrive at years of maturity?… of those who die young, who knows (or cares?) anything about them? The death of any of your favourite dogs would be more lamented.
(An Address to British Females, pp. 11-17.)
- Mainly America
Breaking the Chains of Illusion
White slaves were actually owned by Negroes and Indians in the South to such an extent that the Virginia Assembly passed the following law in 1670: “It is enacted that noe Negro or Indian though baptized and enjoyned their owne ffreedome shall be capable of any such purchase of christians.” (Statutes of the Virginia Assembly, Vol. 2, pp. 280-81.)
Negroes also owned other Negroes in America (Charleston County Probate Court Records, 1754-1758, p. 406).
While Whites languished in chains Blacks were free men in Virginia throughout the 17th century (Willie Lee Rose, A Documentary History of Slavery in North America, p. 15; John Henderson Russell, Free Negro in Virginia, 1619-1865, p.23; Bruce Levine, et al., Who Built America?, vol. I, p. 52).
In 1717, it was proposed that a qualification for election to the South Carolina Assembly was to be “the ownership of one white man.”
(Journals of the Commons House of Assembly of the Province of South Carolina: 1692-1775, volume 5, pp. 294-295.)
Negroes voted in the Carolina counties of Berkeley and Craven in 1706 “and their votes were taken.” (Levine, p. 63.)
Poor Whites and the Southern Confederacy
Try to envision the 19th century scene: yeoman southern Whites, sick and destitute, watching their children dying while enduring the spectacle of negroes from the jungles of Africa healthy and well-fed thanks to the ministrations of their fabulously wealthy White owners who cared little or nothing for the local “White trash.”
In the course of an 1855 journey up the Alabama River on the steamboat Fashion, Frederic Law Olmsted, the landscape architect who designed New York’s Central Park, observed bales of cotton being thrown from a considerable height into a cargo ship’s hold. The men tossing the bales somewhat recklessly into the hold were Negroes, the men in the hold were Irish. Olmsted inquired about this to a mate on the ship. “‘Oh,’ said the mate, ‘the Niggers are worth too much to be risked here; if the Paddies are knocked overboard or get their backs broke, nobody loses anything.’” (Frederic Law Olmsted, A Journey to the Seaboard Slave States, pp. 100-101; G.E.M. de Ste. Croix, Slavery and Other Forms of Unfree Labor, p. 27.)
* * *
From 1609 until the early 1800s, between one-half and two thirds of all the White colonists who came to the New World came as slaves. Of the passengers on the Mayflower, twelve were White slaves (John Van der Zee, Bound Over, p. 93). White slaves cleared the forests, drained the swamps, built the roads. They worked and died in greater numbers than anyone else.
Whites Were the First Slaves in America
“The practice developed and tolerated in the kidnapping of Whites laid the foundation for the kidnapping of Negroes.”
(Eric Williams, From Columbus to Castro, p. 103.)
The official papers of the White slave trade refer to adult White slaves as “freight” and White child slaves were termed “half-freight.” Like any other commodity on the shipping inventories, White human beings were seen strictly in terms of market economics by merchants.
* * *
In the 17th century White slaves were cheaper to acquire than Negroes and therefore were often mistreated to a greater extent.
Having paid a bigger price for the Negro, “the planters treated the black better than they did their ‘Christian’ white servant. Even the Negroes recognized this and did not hesitate to show their contempt for those white men who, they could see, were worse off than themselves.”
(Bridenbaugh, p. 118.)
It was White slaves who built America from its very beginnings and made up the overwhelming majority of stave-laborers in the colonies in the 17th century. Negro slaves seldom had to do the kind of virtually lethal work the White slaves of America did in the formative years of settlement. “The frontier demands for heavy manual labor, such as felling trees, soil clearance, and general infrastructural development, had been satisfied primarily by white indentured servants between 1627 and 1643.”
(Beckles, Natural Rebels, p. 8.)
* * *
Hundreds of thousands of Whites in colonial America were owned outright by their masters and died in slavery. They had no control over their own lives and were auctioned on the block and examined like livestock exactly like Black slaves, with the exception that these Whites were enslaved by their own race. White slaves “found themselves powerless as individuals, without honor or respect and driven into commodity production not by any inner sense of moral duty but by the outer stimulus of the whip.“
(Beckles, White Servitude, p. 5.)
Upon arrival in America, White slaves were “put up for sale by the ship captains or merchants… Families were often separated under these circumstances when wives and offspring were auctioned off to the highest bidder.” (Foster R. Dulles, Labor in America: A History, p. 7.)
“Eleanor Bradbury, sold with her three sons to a Maryland owner, was separated from her husband, who was bought by a man in Pennsylvania.” (Van der Zee, p. 165.)
White people who were passed over for purchase at the point of entry were taken into the back country by “soul drivers” who herded them along “like cattle to a Smithfield market” and then put them up for auction at public fairs. “Prospective buyers felt their muscles, checked their teeth… like cattle.” (Sharon Salinger, To Serve Well and Faithfully, Labor and Indentured Servants in Pennsylvania, 1682-1800, p. 97.)
“Indentured servants were sold at auction, sometimes after being stripped naked.” (Roediger, p. 30.) “We were… exposed to sale in public fairs as so many brute beasts.” (Ekirch, p. 129.)
* * *
The Virginia Company arranged with the City of London to have 100 poor White children “out of the swarms that swarme in the place” sent to Virginia in 1619 for sale to the wealthy planters of the colony to be used as slave labor. The Privy Council of London authorized the Virginia Company to “imprison, punish and dispose of any of those children upon any disorder by them committed, as cause shall require.”
The trade in White slaves was a natural one for English merchants who imported sugar and tobacco from the colonies. Whites kidnapped in Britain could be exchanged directly for this produce. The trade in White slaves was basically a return haul operation.
* * *
At the bare minimum, hundreds of thousands of White slaves were kidnapped off the streets and roads of Great Britain in the course of more than one hundred and fifty years and sold to captains of slave ships in London known as “White Guineamen.”
Ten thousand Whites were kidnapped from England in the year 1670 alone (Edward Channing, History of the United States, vol. 2, p. 369). The very word “kidnapper” was first coined in Britain in the 1600s to describe those who captured and sold White children into slavery (“kid-nabbers”).
Torture and Murder of White Slaves
White slaves were punished with merciless whippings and beatings. The records of Middlesex County, Virginia relate how a slave master confessed “that he hath most uncivilly and inhumanly beaten a (White) female with great knotted whipcord – so that the poor servant is a lamentable spectacle to behold.”
“Whippings were commonplace… as were iron collars and chains.”
(Ekirch, p. 150.)
A case in the county from 1655 relates how a White slave was “fastened by a lock with a chain to it” by his master and tied to a shop door and “whipped till he was very bloody.” The beating and whipping of White slaves resulted in so many being beaten to death that in 1662 the Virginia Assembly passed a law prohibiting the private burial of White slaves because such burial helped to conceal their murders and encouraged further atrocities against other White slaves.
A grievously ill White slave was forced by his master to dig his own grave, since there was little likelihood that the master would obtain any more labor from him. The White slave’s owner “made him sick and languishing as he was, dig his own grave, in which he was laid a few days afterwards, the others being too busy to dig it, having their hands full in attending to the tobacco.”
(Jaspar Danckaerts and Peter Sluyter, Journal of a Voyage to New York and a Tour of Several American Colonies, 1679-1680.)
In New England, Nicholas Weekes and his wife deliberately cut off the toes of their White slave who subsequently died. Marmaduke Pierce in Massachusetts severely beat a White slave boy with a rod and finally beat him to death. Pierce was not punished for the murder. In 1655 in the Plymouth Colony a master named Mr. Latham, starved his 14-year-old White slave boy, beat him and left him to die outdoors in sub-zero temperatures. The dead boy’s body showed the markings of repeated beatings and his hands and feet were frozen solid.
Colonial records are full of the deaths by beating, starvation and exposure of White slaves in addition to tragic accounts such as the one of the New Jersey White slave boy who drowned himself rather than continue to face the unmerciful beatings of his master (American Weekly Mercury, Sept. 2-9, 1731).
Henry Smith beat to death an elderly White slave and raped two of his female White slaves in Virginia. John Dandy beat to death his White slave boy whose black and blue body was found floating down a creek in Maryland. Pope Alvey beat his White slave girl Alice Sanford to death in 1663. She was reported to have been “beaten to a Jelly.” Joseph Fincher beat his White slave Jeffery Haggman to death in 1664.
John Grammer ordered his plantation overseer to beat his White slave 100 times with a cat-o’-ninetails. The White slave died of his wounds. The overseer, rather than expressing regret at the death he inflicted stated, “I could have given him ten times more.” There are thousands of cases in the colonial archives of inhuman mistreatment, cruelty, beatings and the entire litany of Uncle Tom’s Cabin horrors administered to hapless White slaves.
In Australia, White slave Joseph Mansbury had been whipped repeatedly to such an extent that his back appeared, “quite bare of flesh, and his collar bones were exposed looking very much like two ivory, polished horns. It was with difficulty that we could find another place to flog him. Tony [Chandler, the overseer] suggested to me that we had better do it on the soles of his feet next time.” (Robert Hughes, The Fatal Shore, p. 115.) Hughes describes the fate of White slaves as one of “prolonged and hideous torture.”
One overseer in Australia whose specialty was whipping White slaves would say while applying his whip on their backs, “Another half pound mate, off the beggar’s ribs.” The overseer’s face and clothes were described as having the appearance of “a mincemeat chopper, being covered in flesh from the victim’s body.” (Hughes, p. 115.)
* * *
Nor should it be concluded that because some trials were held for those masters who murdered their White slaves that this reflected a higher justice than that given to Black slaves. In thousands of cases of homicide against poor Whites there were no trials whatsoever – murdered White slaves were hurriedly buried by their masters so that the resulting decomposition would prohibit any enquiry into the cause of their deaths. Others just “disappeared” or died from “accidents” or committed “suicide.” Many of the high number of so-called “suicides” of White slaves took place under suspicious circumstances, but in every single case the slave master was found innocent of any crime. (For acquittals of masters in Virginia or instances of failure to prosecute them for the murder of White slaves, see Virginia General Court Minutes, VMH, XIX, 388.)
* * *
A White orphan boy was kidnapped in Virginia and enslaved under the guise of “teaching him a trade.” The boy was able to have the Rappahannock County Court take notice of his slavery:
“An orphan complained on July 2, 1685 that he was held in a severe and hard servitude illegally and that he was taken by one Major Hawkins ‘under pretense of giving him learning.’ The case came before the court on August 2, but the justices decided that he must continue in the service of his present master.” (Jernegan, pp. 159-160.)
“They possessed one right – to complain to the planter-magistrates concerning excessively violent abuse. But this right, which by custom was also available to black slaves in some societies, had little or no mitigating effect on the overall nature of their treatment on the estates.”
(Beckles, White Servitude, p. 5.
For information on Blacks allowed to accuse White slave masters in court and who were freed from slavery as a result of hearings before White judges, see the Minutes of Council of March 10, 1654 in the Lucas manuscripts, reel 1, f. 92, Bridgetown Public Library, Barbados.)
Crackers, Redlegs, Rednecks and Hillbillies
O Dear Father… I am sure you’ll pity your distressed daughter. What we unfortunate English people suffer here is beyond the probability of you in England to conceive.
Let it suffice that I am one of the unhappy number toiling day and night, and very often in the horse’s druggery, with only the comfort of hearing me called, ‘You, bitch, you did not do half enough.’
Then I am tied up and whipped to that degree that you’d not serve an animal. I have scarce anything but Indian corn and salt to eat and that even begrudged. Nay, many Negroes are better used…
After slaving after Master’s pleasure, what rest we can get is to wrap ourselves up in a blanket and lay upon the ground. This is the deplorable condition your poor Betty endures.
From a letter by White slave Elizabeth Sprigs in Maryland to her father John Sprigs in London, September 22, 1756. (High Court of the Admiralty, London, Public Record Office.)
Michael A. Hoffman, They Were White and They Were Slaves, Independent History & Research Co., Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, 1992, 137pp.
‘The cruelties of the Algerine pirates, shewing the present dreadful state of the English slaves, and other Europeans, at Algiers and Tunis; with the horrid barbarities inflicted on Christian mariners shipwrecked on the north western coast of Africa and carried into perpetual slavery.’
An Untold Story of White Slavery
Prof. Robert C. Davis, Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters reviewed by Thomas Jackson
Whites have forgotten what blacks take pains to remember
As Robert C. Davis notes in this eye-opening account of Barbary Coast slavery, American historians have studied every aspect of enslavement of Africans by whites but have largely ignored enslavement of whites by North Africans. Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters is a carefully researched, clearly written account of what Prof. Davis calls “the other slavery,” which flourished during approximately the same period as the trans-Atlantic trade, and which devastated hundreds of European coastal communities. Slavery plays nothing like the central role in the thinking of today’s whites that it does for blacks, but not because it was a fleeting or trivial matter. The record of Mediterranean slavery is indeed as black as the most tendentious portrayals of American slavery. Prof. Davis, who teaches Italian social history at Ohio State University, casts a piercing light into this fascinating but neglected corner of history.
A wholesale business
The Barbary Coast, which extends from Morocco through modern Libya, was home to a thriving man-catching industry from about 1500 to 1800. The great slaving capitals were Salé in Morocco, Tunis, Algiers, and Tripoli, and for most of this period European navies were too weak to put up more than token resistance.
The trans-Atlantic trade in blacks was strictly commercial, but for Arabs, memories of the Crusades and fury over expulsion from Spain in 1492 seem to have fuelled an almost jihad-like Christian-stealing campaign. “It may have been this spur of vengeance, as opposed to the bland workings of the marketplace, that made the Islamic slavers so much more aggressive and initially (one might say) successful in their work than their Christian counterparts,” writes Prof. Davis. During the 16th and 17th centuries more slaves were taken south across the Mediterranean than west across the Atlantic. Some were ransomed back to their families, some were put to hard labour in North Africa, and the unluckiest worked themselves to death as galley slaves.
What is most striking about Barbary slaving raids is their scale and reach. Pirates took most of their slaves from ships, but they also organised huge, amphibious assaults that practically depopulated parts of the Italian coast. Italy was the most popular target, partly because Sicily is only 125 miles from Tunis, but also because it did not have strong central rulers who could resist invasion.
Large raiding parties might be essentially unopposed. When pirates sacked Vieste in southern Italy in 1554, for example, they took an astonishing 6,000 captives. Algerians took 7,000 slaves in the Bay of Naples in 1554, in a raid that drove the price of slaves so low it was said you could “swap a Christian for an onion.” Spain too, suffered large-scale attacks. After a raid on Grenada in 1556 netted 4,000 men, women and children, it was said to be “raining Christians in Algiers.” For every large-scale raid of this kind there would have been dozens of smaller ones.
The appearance of a large fleet could send the entire population inland, emptying coastal areas. In 1566, a party of 6,000 Turks and Corsairs sailed up the Adriatic and landed at Fracaville. The authorities could do nothing and urged complete evacuation, leaving the Turks in control of over 500 square miles of abandoned villages all the way to Serracapriola.
When pirates appeared, people often fled the coast to the nearest town, but Prof. Davis explains why this was not always good strategy:
“More than one middle-sized town, swollen with refugees, was unable to withstand a frontal assault by several hundred corsairs, and the re’is (a corsair captain), who might otherwise have had to seek slaves a few dozen at a time along the beaches and up into the hills, could find a thousand or more captives all conveniently gathered in one place for the taking.”
Pirates returned time and again to pillage the same territory. In addition to a far larger number of smaller raids, the Calabrian coast suffered the following increasingly large-scale depredations in less than a 10-year period: 700 captured in a single raid in 1636, 1,000 in 1639 and 4,000 in 1644. During the 16th and 17th centuries, pirates set up semi-permanent bases on the islands of Ischia and Procida, practically within the mouth of the Bay of Naples, from which they took their pick of commercial traffic.
When they came ashore, Muslim corsairs made a point of desecrating churches. They often stole church bells, not just because the metal was valuable but also to silence the distinctive voice of Christianity.
In the more frequent smaller raiding parties, just a few ships would operate by stealth, falling upon coastal settlements in the middle of the night so as to catch people “peaceful and still naked in their beds.” This practice gave rise to the modern day Sicilian expression, pigliato dai turchi, or “taken by the Turks,” which means to be caught by surprise while asleep or distracted.
Constant predating took a terrible toll. Women were easier to catch than men, and coastal areas could quickly lose their entire child-bearing population. Fishermen were afraid to go out, or would sail only in convoys. Eventually, Italians gave up much of their coast. As Prof. Davis explains, by the end of the 17th century, “the Italian peninsula had by then been prey to the Barbary corsairs for two centuries or more, and its coastal populations had largely withdrawn into walled, hilltop villages or the larger towns like Rimini, abandoning miles of once populous shoreline to vagabonds and freebooters.”
Only by 1700 or so, were Italians able to prevent spectacular land raids, though piracy on the seas continued unchecked. Prof. Davis believes piracy caused Spain and especially Italy to turn away from the sea and lose their traditions of trade and navigation – with devastating effect. “At least for Iberia and Italy, the seventeenth century represented a dark period out of which Spanish and Italian societies emerged as mere shadows of what they had been in the earlier, golden ages.”
Some Arab pirates were skilled blue-water sailors, and terrorized Christians 1,000 miles away. One spectacular raid all the way to Iceland in 1627 took nearly 400 captives. We think of Britain as a redoubtable sea power since the time of Drake, but throughout the 17th century, Arab pirates operated freely in British waters, even sailing up the Thames estuary to pick off prizes and raid coastal towns. In just three years, from 1606 to 1609, the British navy admitted losing no fewer than 466 British and Scottish merchant ships to Algerian corsairs. By the mid-1600s the British were running a brisk trans-Atlantic trade in blacks, but many British crewmen themselves became the property of Arab raiders.
Life under the lash
Land attacks could be hugely successful, but they were riskier than taking prizes at sea. Ships were therefore the primary source of white slaves. Unlike their victims, corsair vessels had two means of propulsion: galley slaves as well as sails. This meant they could row up to any becalmed sailing ship and attack at will. They carried many different flags, so when they were under sail they could run up whatever ensign was most likely to gull a target.
A good-sized merchantman might yield 20 or so sailors healthy enough to last a few years in the galleys, and passengers were usually good for a ransom. Noblemen and rich merchants were attractive prizes, as were Jews, who could usually scrape up a substantial ransom from co-religionists. High clerics were also valuable because the Vatican would usually pay any price to keep them out of the hands of infidels.
At the approach of pirates, passengers often tore off their fine clothes and tried to dress as poorly as possible in the hope their captors would send to their families for more modest ransoms. This effort would be wasted if the pirates tortured the captain for information about passengers. It was also common to strip men naked, both to examine their clothes for sewn-in valuables and to see if any circumcised Jews were masquerading as gentiles.
If the pirates were short on galley slaves, they might put some of their captives to work immediately, but prisoners usually went below hatches for the journey home. They were packed in, barely able to move in the filth, stench, and vermin, and many died before they reached port.
Once in North Africa, it was tradition to parade newly-captured Christians through the streets, so people could jeer at them, and children would pelt them with refuse. At the slave market, men were made to jump about to prove they were not lame, and buyers often wanted them stripped naked again to see if they were healthy. This was also to evaluate the sexual value of both men and women; white concubines had a high value, and all the slave capitals had a flourishing homosexual underground. Buyers who hoped to make a quick profit on a fat ransom examined earlobes for signs of piercing, which was an indication of wealth. It was also common to check a captive’s teeth to see if he was likely to survive on a tough slave diet.
The pasha or ruler of the area got a certain percentage of the slave take as a form of income tax. These were almost always men, and became government rather than private property. Unlike private slaves, who usually boarded with their masters, they lived in the bagnos or “baths,” as the pasha’s slave warehouses came to be called. It was common to shave the heads and beards of public slaves as an added humiliation, in a period when head and facial hair were an important part of a man’s identity.
Most of these public slaves spent the rest of their lives as galley slaves, and it is hard to imagine a more miserable existence. Men were chained three, four, or five to an oar, with their ankles chained together as well. Rowers never left their oars, and to the extent that they slept at all, they slept on their benches. Slaves could push past each other to relieve themselves at an opening in the hull, but they were often too exhausted or dispirited to move, and fouled themselves where they sat. They had no protection against the burning Mediterranean sun, and their masters flayed their already-raw backs with the slave driver’s favourite tool of encouragement, a stretched bull’s penis or “bull’s pizzle.” There was practically no hope of escape or rescue; a galley slave’s job was to work himself to death mainly in raids to capture more wretches like himself – and his master pitched him overboard at the first sign of serious illness.
When the pirate fleet was in port, galley slaves lived in the bagno and did whatever filthy, dangerous, or exhausting work the pasha set them to. This was usually stonecutting and hauling, harbour-dredging, or heavy construction. The slaves in the Turkish sultan’s fleet did not even have this variety. They were often at sea for months on end, and stayed chained to their oars even in port. Their ships were life-long prisons.
Other slaves on the Barbary Coast had more varied jobs. Often they did household or agricultural work of the kind we associate with American slavery, but those who had skills were often rented out by their owners. Some masters simply horned slaves loose during the day with orders to return with a certain amount of money by evening or be severely beaten. Masters seem to have expected about a 20 percent return on the purchase price. Whatever they did, in Tunis and Tripoli, slaves usually wore an iron ring around an ankle, and were hobbled with a chain that weighed 25 or 30 pounds.
Some masters put their white slaves to work on farms deep in the interior, where they faced yet another peril: capture and re-enslavement by raiding Berbers. These unfortunates would probably never see another European for the rest of their short lives.
Prof. Davis points out that there was no check of any kind on cruelty: “There was no countervailing force to protect the slave from his master’s violence: no local anti-cruelty laws, no benign public opinion, and rarely any effective pressure from foreign states.”
Slaves were not just property, they were infidels, and deserved whatever suffering a suffering a master meted out. Prof. Davis notes that “all slaves who lived in the bagnos and survived to write of their experiences stressed the endemic cruelty and violence practiced there.”
The favourite punishment was the bastinado, in which a man was put on his back, and his ankles clamped together and held waist high for a sustained beating on the soles of the feet. A slave might get as many as 150 or 200 blows, which would leave him crippled. Systematic violence turned many men into automatons. Slaves were often so plentiful and so inexpensive, there was no joint in caring for them; many owners worked them to death and bought replacements.
The slavery system was not, however, entirely without humanity. Slaves usually got Fridays off. Likewise, when bagno men were in port, they had an hour or two of free time every day between the end of work and before the bagnos’ doors were locked at night. During this time, slaves could work for pay, but they could not keep all the money they made. Even bagno slaves were assessed a fee for their filthy lodgings and rancid food.
Public slaves also contributed to a fund to support bagno priests. This was a strongly religious era, and even under the most horrible conditions, men wanted a chance to say confession and – most important – receive extreme unction. There was almost always a captive priest or two in the bagno, but in order to keep him available for religious duties, other slaves had to chip in and buy his time from the pasha. Some galley slaves thus had nothing left over to spend on food or clothing, though in some periods, free Europeans living in the cities of Barbary contributed to the upkeep of bagno priests.
For a few, slavery became more than bearable. Some trades – particularly that of shipwright – were so valuable that an owner might reward his slave with a private villa and mistresses. Even a few bagno residents managed to exploit the hypocrisy of Islamic society and improve their condition. The law strictly forbade Muslims to trade in alcohol, but was more lenient with Muslims who only consumed it. Enterprising slaves established taverns in the bagnos and some made a good living catering to Muslim drinkers.
One way to lessen the burdens of slavery was to “take the turban” and convert to Islam. This exempted a man from service in the galleys, heavy construction, and a few other indignities unworthy of a son of the Prophet, but did not release him from slavery itself. One of the jobs of bagno priests was to keep desperate men from converting, but most slaves appear not to have needed religious counsel. Christians believed that conversion imperilled their souls, and it also meant the unpleasant ritual of adult circumcision. Many slaves appear to have endured the horrors of slavery by seeing it as punishment for their sins and as a test of their faith. Masters discouraged conversion because it limited the scope of mistreatment and lowered a slave’s resale value.
Ransom and redemption
For slaves, escape was impossible. They were too far from home, were often shackled, and could be immediately identified by their European features. The only hope was ransom.
Sometimes, the opportunity came quickly. If a slaving party had already snatched so many men it had no more room below deck, it might raid a town and then reappear a few days later to sell captives back to their families. This was usually at a considerable discount from the cost of ransoming someone from North Africa, but it was still far more than peasants could afford. Farmers usually had no ready money, and no property other than house and land. A merchant was usually willing to take these off their hands at distress prices, but it meant that a captured man or woman came back to a family that was completely impoverished.
Most slaves bought their way home only after they had gone through the ordeal of passage to Barbary and sale to a speculator. Wealthy captives could usually arrange a sufficient ransom, but most slaves could not. Illiterate peasants could not write home and even if they did, there was no cash for ransom.
The majority of slaves therefore depended on the charitable work of the Trinitarians (founded in Italy in 1193) and the Mercedarians (founded in Spain in 1203). These were religious orders established to free Crusaders held by Muslims, but they soon shifted their work to redemption of Barbary slaves, raising money specifically for this purpose. Often they maintained lockboxes outside churches marked “For the Recovery of the Poor Slaves,” and clerics urged wealthy Christians to leave money in their will for redemption. The two orders became skilled negotiators, and usually managed to buy back slaves at better prices than did less experienced liberators. Still, there was never enough money to flee many captives, and Prof. Davis estimates that no more than three or four percent of slaves were ever ransomed in a single year. This meant that most left their bones in the unmarked Christian graveyards outside the city walls.
The religious orders kept careful records of their successes; Spanish Trinitarians, for example, went on 72 redemption expeditions in the 1600s, averaging 220 releases on each. It was common to bring the freed slaves home and march them through the streets in big celebrations. These parades became one of the most characteristic urban spectacles of the period, and had a strong religious orientation. Sometimes the slaves marched in their old slave rags to emphasize the torments they had suffered; sometimes they wore special white costumes to symbolize rebirth. According to contemporary records, many freed slaves were never quite right after their ordeals, especially if they had spent many years in captivity.
How many slaves?
Prof. Davis points out that enormous research has gone into tracking down as accurately as possible the number of blacks taken across the Atlantic, but there has been nothing like the same effort to learn the extent of Mediterranean slavery. It is not easy to get a reliable count – the Arabs themselves kept essentially no records – but in the course of ten years of research Prof. Davis developed a method of estimation.
For example, records suggest that from 1580 to 1680 there was an average of some 35,000 slaves in Barbary. There was a steady loss through death and redemption, so if the population stayed level, the rate at which raiders captured new slaves must have equalled the rate of attrition. There are good bases for estimating death rates. For example, it is known that of the nearly 400 Icelanders caught in 1627, there were only 70 survivors eight years later. In addition to malnutrition, overcrowding, overwork, and brutal punishment, slaves faced epidemics of plague, which usually wiped out 20 to 30 percent of the white slaves.
From a number of sources, therefore, Prof. Davis estimates that the death rate was about 20 percent per year. Slaves had no access to women, so replacement was exclusively through capture. His conclusion: “Between 1530 and 1780 there were almost certainly a million and quite possibly as many as a million and a quarter white, European Christians enslaved by the Muslims of the Barbary Coast.”
This considerably exceeds the figure of 800,000 Africans generally accepted as having been transported to the North American colonies and, later, to the United States.
The European powers were unable to stop this traffic. Prof. Davis reports that in the late 1700s they had a better record of controlling the trade, but there was an upturn of white slavery during the chaos of the Napoleonic wars.
American shipping was not exempt from predation either. Only in 1815, after two wars against them, were American sailors free of the Barbary pirates. These wars were significant operations for the young republic; one campaign is remembered in the words “to the shores of Tripoli” in the U.S. Marine hymn. When the French took over Algiers in 1830, there were still 120 white slaves in the bagno.
Why is there so little interest in Mediterranean slavery while scholarship and reflection on black slavery never ends?
As Prof. Davis explains, white slaves with non-white masters simply do not fit “the master narrative of European imperialism.” The victimization schemes so dear to academics require white wickedness, not white suffering.
Prof. Davis also points out that the widespread European experience of slavery gives the lie to another favourite leftist hobby horse: that the enslavement of blacks was a crucial step in establishing European notions of race and racial hierarchy. Not so; for centuries, Europeans lived in fear of the lash themselves, and a great many watched redemption parades of freed slaves, all of whom were white. Slavery was a fate more easily imagined for themselves than for distant Africans.
With enough effort, it is possible to imagine Europeans as preoccupied with slavery as blacks. If Europeans nursed grievances about galley slaves the way blacks do about field hands, European politics would certainly be different. There would be no grovelling apologies for the Crusades, little Muslim immigration to Europe, minarets would not be going up all over Europe, and Turkey would not be dreaming of joining the European Union. The past cannot be undone, and brooding can be taken to excess, but those who forget also pay a high price.
Robert C. Davis: Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters: White Slavery in the Mediterranean, the Barbary Coast, and Italy, 1500-1800, Palgrave Macmillan, 2003, 264pp. From Candour, vol. 73, no. 6, Dec. 2006
Rob Smyth relates some little-known history of an evil trade
European Slaves, African Slave-Masters
A recent British television programme about a sunken galleon in British waters made some brief reference to the Barbary slave trade, something that is very rarely mentioned in these politically correct times. Accordingly, it must be a subject worth exploring further, particularly as many people seem to perceive – understandably in view of continual one-sided propaganda on such issues – that it is only black people who have suffered from slavery at the hands of another race. This perception is one which the global money power is keen to encourage, no doubt, as it inculcates a guilt complex among Whites; which, in turn, tends to stifle objections to the mass importation of cheap labour into the West and the transfer of investment and jobs to the Third World.
A NATIONAL INDUSTRY
Historically, the Mediterranean was always plagued by piracy, but from the later Middle Ages the scale of these activities intensified substantially, particularly through the state-supported corsairs operating from the Barbary Coast of North Africa. For several hundred years, they spread terror throughout the waters and coastlines of the Mediterranean and Atlantic. As John Gunther says of the Moors of this period in Inside Africa:–
‘Their national industry was piracy. They lived on loot, human and otherwise, and brought forcibly into the Maghreb great numbers of captured European (Christian) slaves.’ (p. 39)
There were, however, differences between the corsairs’ slave business and the unjustifiably more notorious trans-Atlantic slave trade. The black slaves in the latter trade were sold to white traders by their own people in exchange for rum, brandy, clothes, glass beads and other European goodies; and they were only traded for economic purposes. On the other hand, the white slaves of the North African corsairs were captured in raids on European shipping and coastlines, with no question of purchase or exchange; and they were carried away not just as slave labour, but also for purposes of ransom and harem service.
Detail from a 1684 engraving showing the Algiers slave market. In the right foreground there appear to be two European women, stripped and publicly exhibited for potential buyers.
THE MOORS IN SPAIN
The Moors were the western-most adherents of Islam, which had spread rapidly in the Middle East and North Africa during the 7th and 8th centuries. They had invaded and occupied Spain in 711. Indeed, they advanced well into France before being defeated at Pointers by Charles Martel in 732. Then they retreated over the Pyrenees, and it was not until 1492, the year Columbus ‘discovered’ America, that they were finally expelled from Spain.
They were heavily engaged in human trafficking, and Andalusia, in Southern Spain, became an important centre for the slave trade. As Stephen Clissold wrote in ‘The Ransom Business,’ (History Today magazine, December 1976):–
‘Cordoba and other cities had their slave-markets where the human merchandise was examined and valued on sophisticated lines. Women were generally more highly prized than men and were carefully assessed by female inspectors, who recorded their physical attractions or defects in the purchase contract. Handbooks listing these good and bad qualities were especially composed to facilitate the delicate task.’ (p. 780)
In passing, it is interesting to reflect that the Moors occupied Spain for nearly 800 years. During much of that time they must have thought:
“We are here to stay.”
But they weren’t.
RISE OF THE BARBARY STATES
The expulsion of the Moors from Spain gave great impetus to the Barbary corsairs. Not only did the expulsion imbue the Moors with a hatred of Christianity, but also their numbers were too great for the economy of their new home, the Maghreb region of North Africa, to absorb. They joined motherland Moors, Algerians, Turks of the Ottoman Empire (to which the Barbary states were often linked) and others in the corsair business of plundering and human trafficking. Clissold tells us that:–
‘The Barbary States were organised primarily for this purpose, and for three centuries they continued to derive the major part of their revenues from the prizes and captives taken, and from the tribute or “presents” with which individual Christian countries sought to purchase immunity.’ (p. 779)
Matters got progressively worse. By the middle of the seventeenth century, the corsairs were marauding in the Atlantic and lurking in the English Channel. Attacks were not confined to merchant vessels. Even fishermen were attacked. Raids were made on coastal settlements, including some on Cornwall, where houses would be looted and inhabitants kidnapped. It is said that at one time 10,000 of the inhabitants of Algiers were slaves, a fifth of them British. Algiers became the chief centre of corsair activity; and the ocean-going vessels it developed were able to operate further away from base than the traditional galleys, bringing even Iceland within reach of the raiders.
RANSOM AND REDEMPTION
Much of the corsairs’ wealth came from the ransoming of captives. Among these, for example, was Cervantes, the famed author of Don Quixote, who was enslaved for five years before his family and friends managed to raise the required ransom money. Ransoming became big business, not only for the corsairs but also for the numerous intermediaries and brokers who negotiated or arranged payment. These included two great Redemptionist religious organisations, the Trinitarians and the Mercedarians, which specifically raised money for the purpose. Governments also sometimes raised ransom for their citizens. Tens of thousands of slaves changed hands in this period.
Ransom money and redemption expenses, often deliberately inflated by unscrupulous intermediaries, were not the totality of the cost. As Clissold relates:–
‘In addition to the ransom money, “presents” had to be made to the ruler and his hierarchy of officials. The number and cost of these had to be worked out and included in the Redemptionists’ budget; or they might otherwise have to buy them on the spot and incur crippling debts. Failure to make presents that their recipients regarded as suited to their rank and expectations caused great offense and might jeopardise the prospects of the mission.’ (p. 783)
Thus, a lot of people besides the corsairs were on the make from the business. As always, corruption breeds corruption.
COLLABORATION AND RENEGADES
The long reign of the corsairs was in no small measure due to the help they received from European governments and individuals. At a time when European solidarity was necessary, we see ruling elites making agreements with the corsairs in order to buy off attacks on their own people and property or to encourage the corsairs to attack their competitors.
Even more disgraceful was the large-scale defection of renegades to the corsair cause. In those days, as now, there was no shortage of race-traitors willing to make money from the persecution of their own people. Some renegades were captives who had ‘turned Turk’ but many, from all over Europe, made their own way to corsair dominions and voluntarily embraced Islam. They were attracted by the wealth and opportunities in Algiers and other corsair strongholds. Not all of them engaged in piracy; some took positions as personal guards and officials, many reaching the highest positions of authority. Others aided the corsairs in technical matters. Clissold remarks in another article, ‘Christian Renegades and Barbary Corsairs’ (History Today, August 1976):–
‘Renegades and Christian slaves… were the chief agents for the transmission of technology, particularly in the military and naval fields, to the less advanced Islamic lands. It was the renegades who piloted the corsair ships in European coastal waters and divulged the weak spots in the Christian defences.’ (p. 512)
So we see that, as now, the renegades actively assisted in the pillaging of their own lands.
The corsairs did not necessarily encourage conversion to Islam. As Clissold writes:–
‘By no means all these renegades had been forced to apostasise against their will. Pressure was indeed often applied against them precisely in a contrary direction. Apostasy did not automatically set a slave free, though he could generally expect to be better treated. He would no longer be fettered and sent to row in a galley. The corsairs, however, needed galley-slaves and were accordingly loath to let their Christians turn Moslem.’ (p. 509)
Other Christians were forced or bribed into changing their religion. Clissold mentions Father Gracian, a Carmelite friar, himself a captive, who related that a fellow priest was offered a substantial dowry if he would turn Moslem and marry the pretty fifteen-year-old daughter of a Moor. Clissold goes on:–
‘Christian girls were in special danger of being forced into apostasy unless they seemed likely to command rich ransoms. Gracian describes coming across a batch of Corsican and Calabrian girls who had just been taken captive. On making enquiries soon afterwards, he learned that all had already apostasised. To resist absorption into the harem was a forlorn hope. We hear of an English girl taken by Sallee Rovers in 1685 who was sent to the Moroccan Emperor Mouley Ismael for the honour of being deflowered. She at first resisted persuasions to turn Moslem and capitulated only after being handed over to the Emperor’s negresses who whipped her and tormented her with needles.’ (p. 510)
Mouley Ismael was truly a very unpleasant and sinister character, but his aims were, perhaps, not so far removed from those of some nasty social engineers of our own time, as we shall see later.
Eventually, several Western countries resorted to military measures against the corsairs. Portugal, Spain, France, Britain and, in 1804, even the United States, all became involved in the bombardment of North African ports in the hope of suppressing piracy. The latter remained remarkably resilient but the number of captives did gradually dwindle, especially after the British Navy’s devastating bombardment of Algiers in 1816. This episode alone led to the release of 3,000 slaves, some of whom had been held captive for 35 years. Yet, within two months, the rubble was cleared and the fortifications were rebuilt. It was not until 1830, when the French conquered Algeria, that the piracy was ended.
THE MULTI-RACIALIST SULTAN
One can learn some useful lessons from history. For although technology and science might transform our physical environment, it seems unlikely that man himself has changed very much, if at all. The never-ending catalogue of horrific modern atrocities, frauds and other crimes bears testament to that. So it may be well to ponder with concern, as well as with casual interest, the lifestyle and motives of Sultan Mouley Ismael, as recorded in John Gunther’s Inside Africa:–
‘One extraordinary and fiendish character was Sultan Moulay Ismael who ruled for fifty-five years between 1672 and 1727… He set out to build at Meknes, near Fez, a capital that would out-do Versailles. The royal stables alone were three miles long, and contained 12,000 horses; slaves who worked on these and other grandiose projects were, if they did not give satisfaction, cemented into the walls… Moulay is supposed to have had 549 wives, as well as concubines by the thousand, since he seldom used a woman twice. Of his children, 867 survived him. Hundreds of his daughters were strangled at birth. He imported vast numbers of Saharan Negroes to Meknes, systematically mated them to Moorish women, and set about to establish by this means a kind of Praetorian Guard of specially bred half-castes… He had several hundred thousand slaves, of whom 25,000 were captured Christians.’ (pp. 43-44)
Could it possibly be that our own beloved rulers are deliberately promoting miscegenation to create a Praetorian Guard for themselves or the New World Order?
Spearhead magazine, no. 409, March 2003
JEWS & SLAVERY
I remind you that this is the supposedly righteous “Creator of the Universe” speaking directly to Moses:
7 “If a man sells his daughter as a servant, she is not to go free as male servants do. 8 If she does not please the master who has selected her for himself, he must let her be redeemed. He has no right to sell her to foreigners, because he has broken faith with her.9 If he selects her for his son, he must grant her the rights of a daughter.10 If he marries another woman, he must not deprive the first one of her food, clothing and marital rights.11 If he does not provide her with these three things, she is to go free, without any payment of money.”
In this passage, Yahweh states that it’s okay for fathers to sell their daughters into permanent slavery, and he gives rules for what can and can’t be done with her afterwards. In the context of this passage, does being a good father entail getting a good price for your daughter on the slave market?
2 “If you buy a Hebrew servant, he is to serve you for six years. But in the seventh year, he shall go free, without paying anything. 3 If he comes alone, he is to go free alone; but if he has a wife when he comes, she is to go with him. 4 If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the woman and her children shall belong to her master, and only the man shall go free.”
In this passage, Yahweh establishes a condition under which a married male slave who is freed must leave behind his wife and children because they are his master’s property. Is this what religious folk mean when they talk of “family values”?
26 “An owner who hits a male or female slave in the eye and destroys it must let the slave go free to compensate for the eye. 27 And an owner who knocks out the tooth of a male or female slave must let the slave go free to compensate for the tooth.”
This section is where Yahweh gets progressive and establishes the world’s first workers comp law. If you poke out the eye of your slave, you have to set him free?!? How revolutionary and enlightened!
And here is the most inspiring passage of all…
20 “Anyone who beats their male or female slave with a rod must be punished if the slave dies as a direct result, 21 but they are not to be punished if the slave recovers after a day or two, since the slave is their property.”
So if a slave-master beats his slave, he’s to be punished only if the slave dies from the beating (and only if a rod was used)? Hmmm, it’s pretty sweet to be a slave-master in Yahweh’s kingdom, isn’t it?
Except for murder, slavery has got to be one of the most immoral things a person can do. Yet slavery is rampant throughout the JEWISH Bible in both the Old and New Testaments. The JEWISH Bible clearly approves of slavery in many passages, and it goes so far as to tell how to obtain slaves, how hard you can beat them, and when you can have sex with the female slaves.
Many Jews and Christians will try to ignore the moral problems of slavery by saying that these slaves were actually servants or indentured servants. Many translations of the JEWISH Bible use the word “servant”, “bondservant”, or “manservant” instead of “slave” to make the JEWISH Bible seem less immoral than it really is. While many slaves may have worked as household servants, that doesn’t mean that they were not slaves who were bought, sold, and treated worse than livestock.
The following passage shows that slaves are clearly property to be bought and sold like livestock.
“However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way”. (Leviticus 25:44-46)
The following passage describes how the Hebrew slaves are to be treated.
“If you buy a Hebrew slave, he is to serve for only six years. Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom. If he was single when he became your slave and then married afterward, only he will go free in the seventh year. But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife will be freed with him. If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master. But the slave may plainly declare, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children. I would rather not go free.’ If he does this, his master must present him before God. Then his master must take him to the door and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will belong to his master forever”. (Exodus 21:2-6)
Notice how they can get a male Hebrew slave to become a permanent slave by keeping his wife and children hostage until he says he wants to become a permanent slave. What kind of family values are these?
The following passage describes the sickening practice of sex slavery. How can anyone think it is moral to sell your own daughter as a sex slave?
“When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl’s owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment”. (Exodus 21:7-11)
So these are the JEWISH Bible family values! A man can buy as many sex slaves as he wants as long as he feeds them, clothes them, and has sex with them!
What does the JEWISH Bible say about beating slaves?
It says you can beat both male and female slaves with a rod so hard that as long as they don’t die right away you are cleared of any wrong doing
“When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property”. (Exodus 21:20-21)
You would think that Jesus and the New Testament would have a different view of slavery, but slavery is still approved of in the New Testament, as the following passages show.
“Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ”. (Ephesians 6:5 )
“Christians who are slaves should give their masters full respect so that the name of God and his teaching will not be shamed. If your master is a Christian, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. You should work all the harder because you are helping another believer by your efforts. Teach these truths, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them”. (1 Timothy 6:1-2)
In the following parable, Jesus clearly approves of beating slaves even if they didn’t know they were doing anything wrong.
The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it.
“But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given.” (Luke 12:47-48)
The JEWISH Bible may, indeed does, contain a warrant for trafficking in humans, for ethnic cleansing, for slavery, for bride-price, and for indiscriminate massacre
In contemporary times, slavery is almost universally reviled; while human trafficking and similar practices are still far too common, people generally no longer argue that human beings should be owned like property. However, through most of human history, well into the nineteenth century, slavery was (notwithstanding the opinions of the enslaved) broadly accepted as an economic and social necessity.
Slavery was an important facet of life in biblical times. Both the Old and the New Testaments have instructions regarding slaves which contemporary Jews and Christians generally disregard, and which Christian apologists frequently attempt to play down or deny.
Some fringe Christian Biblical literalists, notably those who believe in Dominionism, argue that biblical instructions regarding slavery and its institutions are still relevant.
SLAVERY IN THE JEWISH BIBLE
The JEWISH Bible identifies different categories of slaves including female Hebrew slaves, male Hebrew slaves, non-Hebrew and hereditary slaves. These were subject to different regulations.
Female Hebrews could be sold by their fathers and enslaved for life (Exodus 21:7-11), but under some conditions.
Male Hebrews could sell themselves into slavery for a six year period to eliminate their debts, after this period they might go free. However, if the male slave had been given a wife and had children with her, they would remain his master’s property. They could only stay with their family by becoming permanent slaves. (Exodus 21:2-5). Evangelical Christians, especially those who subscribe to Biblical inerrancy, will commonly emphasize this debt bondage and try to minimise the other forms of race-based chattel slavery when attempting to excuse the Bible for endorsing slavery.
Non-Hebrews, on the other hand, could (according to Leviticus 25:44) be subjected to slavery in exactly the way that it is usually understood. The slaves could be bought, sold and inherited when their owner died. This, by any standard, is race- or ethnicity-based, and Leviticus 25:44-46 explicitly allows slaves to be bought from foreign nations or foreigners living in Israel. It does say that simply kidnapping Hebrews to enslave them is a crime punishable by death (Deuteronomy 24:7), but no such prohibition exists regarding foreigners. War captives could be made slaves, assuming they had refused to make peace (this applied to women and children-men were simply killed), along with the seizure of all their property.(Deuteronomy 20:10-15)
Hereditary slaves were born into slavery and there is no apparent way by which they could obtain their freedom.
So the Bible endorses various types of slavery, see below – though Biblical literalists only want to talk about one version and claim that it wasn’t really so bad.
TYPES OF SLAVERY
As previously stated the JEWISH Bible endorsed different types or grades of slavery.
FEMALE HEBREW SLAVES
Female Hebrew slaves were to be treated differently from males. Parents could sell their daughters into slavery. (Exodus 21:7-11)
7If a man sells his daughter as a female slave, she is not to go free as the male slaves do. 8If she is displeasing in the eyes of her master who designated her for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He does not have authority to sell her to a foreign people because of his unfairness to her. 9If he designates her for his son, he shall deal with her according to the custom of daughters. 10If he takes to himself another woman, he may not reduce her food, her clothing, or her conjugal rights. 11If he will not do these three things for her, then she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.
MALE HEBREW SLAVES
2If you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve for six years; but on the seventh he shall go out as a free man without payment. 3If he comes alone, he shall go out alone; if he is the husband of a wife, then his wife shall go out with him. 4If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall belong to her master, and he shall go out alone. 5But if the slave plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife and my children; I will not go out as a free man,’ 6then his master shall bring him to God, then he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him permanently.
It is interesting to note that if a slave wishes to remain with his wife and family he must submit to his master for life.
On the other hand Hebrew slaves – and only those Hebrew slaves who entered slavery “voluntarily” – got some severance package as described in Deuteronomy 15:12-15:
12If your kinsman, a Hebrew man or woman, is sold to you, then he shall serve you six years, but in the seventh year you shall set him free. 13When you set him free, you shall not send him away empty-handed. 14You shall furnish him liberally from your flock and from your threshing floor and from your wine vat; you shall give to him as the LORD your God has blessed you. 15You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God redeemed you; therefore I command you this today.
If the Israelites wanted full slaves they were instructed in Leviticus 25:44-46:
44As for your male and female slaves whom you may have—you may acquire male and female slaves from the pagan nations that are around you. 45Then, too, it is out of the sons of the sojourners who live as aliens among you that you may gain acquisition, and out of their families who are with you, whom they will have produced in your land; they also may become your possession. 46You may even bequeath them to your sons after you, to receive as a possession; you can use them as permanent slaves. But in respect to your countrymen, the sons of Israel, you shall not rule with severity over one another.
The children of slaves were born into slavery. Exodus 21:4:
If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall belong to her master, and he shall go out alone.
Beating slaves was perfectly allowable under the following rules:
20If a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod and he dies at his hand, he shall be punished. 21If, however, he survives a day or two, no vengeance shall be taken; for he is his property.
26If a man strikes the eye of his male or female slave, and destroys it, he shall let him go free on account of his eye. 27And if he knocks out a tooth of his male or female slave, he shall let him go free on account of his tooth.
ABDUCTION AND SLAVE TRADE
Hebrews were not allowed to abduct fellow Hebrews and sell them.
Exodus 21:16: 16
He who kidnaps a man, whether he sells him or he is found in his possession, shall surely be put to death.
Given that the Hebrews were instructed in Leviticus 25 v 44 to obtain their slaves from the people around them, it is evident that this injunction to not abduct people referred to Hebrews and not non-Hebrews. Obtaining and selling non-Hebrews was evidently not a problem. Deuteronomy 24:7 specifies that only the abduction of Hebrews to enslave them is a crime.
An escaped slave could not be handed over to his master, and would gain full citizenship among Israelites:
15You shall not hand over to his master a slave who has escaped from his master to you. 16He shall live with you in your midst, in the place which he shall choose in one of your towns where it pleases him; you shall not mistreat him.
However, as BibleTrack complementaries put it regarding Deut 23:15
“Most students of the Old Testament agree that this regulation concerns a slave who has escaped from his master in some foreign land and sought refuge in Israel. We do know that, in addition to slaves captured in battle, debt slavery and voluntary slavery existed in Israel and was protected by law, so it seems unlikely that this law applies to those two categories of slaves. We simply aren’t given any detail beyond these two verses.
SLAVERY IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
The New Testament makes no condemnation of slavery and does no more than admonish slaves to be obedient and their masters not to be unfair. Paul, or whoever wrote the epistles, at no time suggested there was anything wrong with slavery. One could speculate that this might have been because he wanted to avoid upsetting the many slave owners in the early Christian congregations or to keep on good political terms with the Roman government. Or, more probably, he simply thought slavery was an acceptable fact of life as did practically everyone else at the time.
5Slaves, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ; 6not by way of eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart. 7With good will render service, as to the Lord, and not to men, 8knowing that whatever good thing each one does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether slave or free.
Christian slaves were told to obey their masters “for the sake of the cause” and be especially obedient to Christian masters:
1 Timothy 6:1-2:
1All who are under the yoke as slaves are to regard their own masters as worthy of all honor so that the name of God and our doctrine will not be spoken against. 2Those who have believers as their masters must not be disrespectful to them because they are brethren, but must serve them all the more, because those who partake of the benefit are believers and beloved. Teach and preach these principles.
There are instructions for Christian slave owners to treat their slaves well.
9And masters, do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him.
1Masters, grant to your slaves justice and fairness, knowing that you too have a Master in heaven.
One passage often cited by apologists as supposed evidence for New Testament condemnation of slavery is 1 Timothy 1:10. However, as the King James version accurately translates, this condemnation is of “men stealers” (Greek: andrapodistais), i.e. slave raiders who kidnapped and sold people as slaves, not slave traders or slave holders in general. So Paul only singled out slave raiders to be considered “lawless and rebellious,” and to be categorized with murderers, homosexuals, liars and oath breakers.
The rather bland admonishment to slave masters by Paul is more than balanced by the demands for absolute obedience made of slaves. It is also rather telling that the masters are likened to God and Jesus, while the masters are simply told that they have a higher lord. So much for Jesus as the embodiment of the underdog – Paul could have pointed to Jesus’ imprisonment and death as a cautionary tale to slave masters that even humble(d) characters can be important.
Before the apologist plays the “but Jesus didn’t condone slavery”-card, following all these Pauline examples, try reading Matthew 18:25, where Jesus uses slaves in a parable and has no qualms about recommending that not only a slave but also his wife and family be sold, while in other parables Jesus recommends that disobedient slaves should be beaten (Luke 12:47) or even killed (Matthew 24:51).
This is probably one of the clearest examples of religious moral relativism.
Most modern Christians prefer to avoid, or are unaware of, these sections of the JEWISH Bible. If forced to explain JEWISH Biblical justification for slavery, they may come up with something, but fortunately Christians as a group think it would be wrong to reintroduce slavery. Christian attempts to justify what is in the JEWISH Bible can lead to them sanctioning things that most moral humanists, and even most Christians, would say are wrong, as can be seen from the quote below.
CHRISTIANS ATTEMPT TO JUSTIFY SLAVERY:
“They ‘shall be of the heathen’ is the key phrase here. God approved of slavery in this instance only because it was His hope that those who became slaves of the Israelites from foreign nations might “be saved.” Even though they would lose their earthly freedom, God hoped that they would gain eternal freedom by coming to know Him, which is far more important.”
ATTEMPTS TO JUSTIFY THE JEWISH BIBLE’S SLAVERY PASSAGES
Argument 1: “Slavery in the Bible was more enlightened than that of 17th-19th Century America and other Ancient Near East cultures.”
Even granting this point for the sake of argument, this fails to answer the simple question: is owning another human ever moral, or not? The relative kindness of a slave owner does not enter into the basic moral question of owning other humans as property.
Argument 2: “They could be let go after 6 years” or “It was a mechanism for protecting those who could not pay their debts.” (A.k.a. “Debt bondage”)
Only some Hebrew male slaves were to be freed in the 7th year (Exodus 21:2). Slaves from surrounding countries could be kept as property forever (Leviticus 25:44-46). A further exception pertains to women whose fathers sold them into slavery, and for whom there was no release after six years (Exodus 21:7).
Argument 3: The Bible restricted slave owners’ actions (Exodus 21:20).
Exodus 21:20 does mandate punishment for a master who kills a slave with a rod, but the very next verse says “But if the slave survives a day or two, there is no punishment; for the slave is the owner’s property” (NRSV). The NIV, by contrast, translates this verse as “if the slave recovers after a day or two”, which changes its meaning. Either way, the emphasis is that the slave is first and foremost property, and therefore the greatest loss is to the owner, whose slave was “as good as money”.
Argument 4: “Slavery was allowed by God because of the time period, but was not the ideal will of God.”
There are many ways a creative, all-knowing, and all-powerful deity could make it clear that slavery is immoral while, for instance, giving the Israelite economy a grace period to let slavery “wind down”, should that be necessary. The passages concerning slavery from the Pentateuch (e.g. Exodus 21:2-7, Leviticus 25:44-46), by contrast, provide guidelines that allow for slavery to continue indefinitely. New Testament writers, too, who had an opportunity to overturn or clarify the Pentateuch’s instructions, did not do so.
Also it seems improbable that a God who was capable of assassinating israelites by the thousand if they did not follow his instructions to the letter would baulk at telling them to give up slaves.
Argument 5: “The term ‘slave’ is a poor translation. It should be ‘servant’.”
This may be plausible in some contexts, but not for Leviticus 25:46, which specifically allows that slaves are property who may be inherited by the owner’s children and kept for life. This passage makes no sense unless they are discussing slavery—permanent ownership of one human by another—as we know it today.
Jesus’ parable of the unforgiving servant (Matthew 18:23) makes no sense if said “servant” is not a slave, since the master has the power to sell both the “servant”, his wife and his children (Matthew 18:25).
It also makes little sense in the case of Matthew 24:51 in which these “servants” may be not only beaten by their master (as in Luke 12:47), but that the master “shall cut him asunder” in the words of the King James translation.
STEVEN SPIELBERG’S pseudo-historical film about a 19th-century mutiny and massacre aboard a Spanish slave ship, Amistad, and the subsequent trial of the Black mutineers is being praised by the reviewers. Spielberg, one of the wealthiest and most successful of Hollywood’s Jewish film makers, also is being praised by his kinsmen in various so-called ‘human rights’ organizations for using his propaganda skills to sensitize White, Gentile audiences to the horrors of slavery and make them feel just a little more guilty for treating non-Whites so badly in the past.
What the film doesn’t mention, of course, is that Spielberg’s Jewish kinsmen owned many, though not all, of the ships involved in the 18th- and 19th-century Atlantic trade in Black slaves and, in fact, played a very prominent role in bringing Black slaves to America.
The film rather tends to steer one away from blaming anyone for slavery except White Gentiles. This bit of misdirection is interesting in light of the fact that Jews have been dominant in the slave trade since at least Roman times – especially the trade in White slaves. Jewish slave-dealers followed Caesar’s armies everywhere – into Gaul, into Germany, and into other northern lands – eager to buy as many of the captives of the Romans – especially the female captives. Jews have remained dominant in the White slave trade until the present day – although during the Middle Ages the Christian Church tried unsuccessfully a number of times to stop them, beginning in the fifth century with an edict by the emperor Theodosius II against Jews owning Christian slaves. After being banned from owning or dealing in slaves by one emperor, the Jews would wait until the next emperor came along, then they would buy a charter giving them a monopoly in the slave trade. Then public outrage against the Jews would grow until another emperor would ban their slave-dealing again. Most of the time, however, the Jews were the undisputed masters of the White slave trade, and that is still the case today.
Interestingly enough, this fact was revealed in a recent news report in the Jewish newspaper the New York Times, of all places. The January 11, 1998 issue had a major article titled ‘Contraband Women’ written by a Jewish reporter in Israel, Michael Specter. The article deals specifically with the Jewish trade in Ukrainian and Russian women – although it doesn’t label the trade as ‘Jewish.’ What the report does say is this, and I quote:
‘Centered in Moscow and the Ukrainian capital Kiev, the networks trafficking women run east to Japan and Thailand, where thousands of young Slavic women now work against their will as prostitutes, and west to the Adriatic coast and beyond. The routes are controlled by Russian crime gangs based in Moscow.’
What the reader must understand is that these crime gangs don’t have a real Russian in them. They are entirely Jewish, but the agreed-upon subterfuge used by the newspapers in this country is to refer to them as Russian rather than as Jewish.
Pimps, law enforcement officials and relief groups all agree that Ukrainian and Russian women are now the most valuable in the trade. Because their immigration is often illegal – and because some percentage of the women choose to work as prostitutes – statistics are difficult to assess. But the United Nations estimates that four million people throughout the world are trafficked each year – forced through lies and coercion to work against their will in many types of servitude. The International Organization for Migration has said that as many as 500,000 women are annually trafficked into Western Europe alone. New York Times
The story of the exploitation of Eastern Europe by the Jews is a fascinating and infuriating one. Throughout the Middle Ages and into the modern era they focused on profiting from the weaknesses and vices of the Gentile populations of Poles, Russians, Ukrainians and others among whom they lived as a barely tolerated minority. In addition to being the moneylenders, they controlled the liquor business and owned the drinking establishments, the gambling dens, and the brothels. A number of 19th-century Russian writers, among them Dostoievski and Gogol, have described their destructive effects on Slavic peasant society and the perpetual condition of mutual hostility which existed between the Jews and the Slavs.
During the 19th and early 20th centuries the Jewish trade in White slaves from these lands expanded enormously. It has been described by the Jewish historian Edward Bristow in his 1982 book Prostitution and Prejudice, published by Oxford University Press and Schocken Books in New York. Although Bristow’s book is subtitled The Jewish Fight against White Slavery 1870-1939, it is nevertheless enormously revealing. The Jews recruited peasant girls in Polish and Russian villages, usually under false pretences, and transported them to brothels in Turkey, Egypt, and other parts of the Middle East; to Vienna, Budapest, and other major cities in the Austro-Hungarian Empire; and as far away as New York, New Orleans, and Buenos Aires. This Jewish trade in Slavic women naturally caused a great deal of hatred against the Jews by the Slavs, and this hatred broke out in pogroms and other popular actions against the Jews over and over again.
One would believe from the works of Mr. Spielberg and other Jewish propagandists that the hatred the Slavs bore against the Jews was based only on religious bigotry and that the Jews were completely innocent and inoffensive. One fascinating fact which Bristow’s book reveals is that the center of the Jewish trade in Polish girls was in a little town called Oswiecim. The German name for this town was Auschwitz.
I don’t mean to imply that the Jews were the only ones at fault in the White slave trade. Gentile politicians and police officials gladly accepted bribes from the Jews and in return allowed them to carry on their dirty business. And in the United States non-Jewish criminal elements such as the Mafia collaborated with the Jews or even ran their own White slave operations. But the trade in White slaves from Eastern Europe has been an exclusively Jewish activity for the last two hundred years.
The women are smuggled by car, bus, boat and plane. Handed off in the dead of night, many are told they will pick oranges, work as dancers or as waitresses. Others have decided to try their luck at prostitution, usually for what they assume will be a few lucrative months. They have no idea of the violence that awaits them.
The efficient, economically brutal routine – whether here in Israel, or in one of a dozen other countries – rarely varies. Women are held in apartments, bars and makeshift brothels; there they service, by their own count, as many as 15 clients a day. Often they sleep in shifts, four to a bed. The best that most hope for is to be deported after the police finally catch up with their captors. New York Times
Tens of thousands of pretty but naive young Russian and Ukrainian women are being swept up by the Jewish gangs – called ‘Russian’ gangs by the New York Times – and shipped off to a life of misery and degradation in Turkey, Pakistan, Thailand, and Israel, as well as to countries in Western Europe, where Jews also control organized crime. The young women, unable to find work in Russia or Ukraine or Poland and facing a bleak future in countries ravaged by decades of communism, are eager for any chance at a better life. They respond to advertisements that offer them work abroad as receptionists or secretaries and also promise free training and transportation. When the girls arrive at their destinations, however, they find something quite different – but by then it is too late.
One of these girls, Irina, a 21-year-old, green-eyed Ukrainian blond, was interviewed in Israel. She told how her Israeli employer took her to a brothel soon after her arrival in Israel. He took her passport away from her, burned it before her eyes, and told her that she now was his property and must work in the brothel. When Irina refused, she was beaten and raped. Luckier than most of the Slavic women lured to Israel, Irina eventually was swept up in a police raid and sent to prison as an illegal alien. She was awaiting deportation, along with hundreds of other Russian and Ukrainian women, when she was interviewed. She lamented the fact that the Israeli who had raped her and forced her to work in the brothel was not even arrested. Indeed, according to Jewish law, the rape of a Gentile woman is not illegal. Nor is it illegal in Israel to buy and sell slaves, so long as the slaves are not Jewish. Amazingly, the New York Times article reveals this fact.
The White slave trade is big business in Israel. Ukrainian authorities estimate that as many as 40,000 Ukrainian women under the age of 30 are taken from Ukraine each year. Some of these women respond to advertisements promising employment abroad, like Irina did, and some are simply kidnapped and smuggled out of the country. Those who try to escape from their Jewish captors are treated brutally. Often they are butchered in front of other captive women to keep the others terrified into doing whatever they are told. At slave markets operated by the Jewish gangs in Italy young Slavic women are stripped, put on blocks, and auctioned off to brothel owners.
The most astounding thing about this whole, filthy business is that most people are forced to learn about it from a Jewish newspaper like the New York Times. And really, you should read for yourself the article to which I referred. It was in the January 11 issue, and the news is not likely to be repeated. But ask yourself, why doesn’t Interpol, the international police agency, do something to put a stop to this White slave trade?
Why don’t the governments of the countries from which the women are being abducted do something?
Why don’t the mass media raise a hue and cry?
Why don’t powerful feminist organizations demand the eradication of White slavery?
And the answer to all of these questions is easy: they dare not do or say anything because it is a Jewish business.
‘This is a sophisticated, global operation,’ Mr. Tyler said. ‘It’s evil, and it’s successful because the money is so good. These men pay $500 to $1,000 for a Ukrainian or Russian woman. Do you understand what I am telling you? They will buy these women and make a fortune out of them.’
To illustrate his point, Mr. Tyler grabbed a black calculator and started calling out the sums as he punched them in.
‘Take a small place,’ he said, ‘with 10 girls. Each has 15 to 20 clients a day. Multiply that by say 200 shekels. So say 30,000 shekels a day comes in to each place. Each girl works 25 days a month. Minimum.’
Mr. Tyler was busy doing math as he spoke.
‘So we are talking about 750,000 shekels a month, or about $215,000. A man often owns five of these places. That’s a million dollars. No taxes, no real overhead. It’s a factory with slave labor. And we’ve got them all over Israel.’ New York Times
CONTRABAND WOMEN – A SPECIAL REPORT
January 11th, 1998 from New York Times > Articles
Traffickers’ New Cargo: Naive Slavic Women
by Michael Specter
RAMLE, Israel–Irina always assumed that her beauty would somehow rescue her from the poverty and hopelessness of village life. A few months ago, after answering a vague ad in a small Ukrainian newspaper, she slipped off a tour boat when it put in at Haifa, hoping to make a bundle dancing naked on the tops of tables.
She was 21, self-assured and glad to be out of Ukraine. Israel offered a new world, and for a week or two everything seemed possible. Then, one morning, she was driven to a brothel, where her boss burned her passport before her eyes.
“I own you,” she recalled his saying. “You are my property and you will work until you earn your way out. Don’t try to leave. You have no papers and you don’t speak Hebrew. You will be arrested and deported. Then we will get you and bring you back.”
It happens every single day. Not just in Israel, which has deported nearly 1,500 Russian and Ukrainian women like Irina in the past three years. But throughout the world, where selling naive and desperate young women into sexual bondage has become one of the fastest- growing criminal enterprises in the robust global economy.
The international bazaar for women is hardly new, of course. Asians have been its basic commodity for decades. But economic hopelessness in the Slavic world has opened what experts call the most lucrative market of all to criminal gangs that have flourished since the fall of Communism: white women with little to sustain them but their dreams. Pimps, law enforcement officials and relief groups all agree that Ukrainian and Russian women are now the most valuable in the trade.
Because their immigration is often illegal–and because some percentage of the women choose to work as prostitutes–statistics are difficult to assess. But the United Nations estimates that four million people throughout the world are trafficked each year–forced through lies and coercion to work against their will in many types of servitude. The International Organization for Migration has said that as many as 500,000 women are annually trafficked into Western Europe alone.
Many end up like Irina. Stunned and outraged by the sudden order to prostitute herself, she simply refused. She was beaten and raped before she succumbed. Finally she got a break. The brothel was raided and she was brought here to Neve Tirtsa in Ramle, the only women’s prison in Israel. Now, like hundreds of Ukrainian and Russian women with no documents or obvious forgeries, she is waiting to be sent home.
“I don’t think the man who ruined my life will even be fined.” she said softly, slow tears filling her enormous green eyes. “You can call me a fool for coming here. That’s my crime. I am stupid. A stupid girl from a little village. But can people really buy and sell women and get away with it? Sometimes I sit here and ask myself if that really happened to me, if it can really happen at all.”
Then, waving her arm toward the muddy prison yard, where Russian is spoken more commonly than Hebrew, she whispered one last thought:
“I’m not the only one, you know. They have ruined us all.”
Traffic Patterns: Russia and Ukraine Supply the Flesh
Centered in Moscow and the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, the networks trafficking women run east to Japan and Thailand, where thousands of young Slavic women now work against their will as prostitutes, and west to the Adriatic Coast and beyond. The routes are controlled by Russian (Jewish) crime gangs based in Moscow. Even when they do not specifically move the women overseas, they provide security, logistical support, liaison with brothel owners in many countries and, usually, false documents.
Women often start their hellish journey by choice. Seeking a better life, they are lured by local advertisements for good jobs in foreign countries at wages they could never imagine at home.
In Ukraine alone, the number of women who leave is staggering. As many as 400,000 women under 30 have gone in the past decade, according to their country’s Interior Ministry. The Thai Embassy in Moscow, which processes visa applications from Russia and Ukraine, says it receives nearly 1,000 visa applications a day, most of these from women.
Israel is a fairly typical destination. Prostitution is not illegal here, although brothels are, and with 250,000 foreign male workers–most of whom are single or here without their wives–the demand is great. Police officials estimate that there are 25,000 paid sexual transactions every day. Brothels are ubiquitous.
None of the women seem to realize the risks they run until it is too late. Once they cross the border their passports will be confiscated, their freedoms curtailed and what little money they have taken from them at once.
“You want to tell these kids that if something seems too good to be true it usually is.” said Lyudmilla Biryuk, a Ukrainian psychologist who has counseled women who have escaped or been released from bondage. “But you can’t imagine what fear and real ignorance can do to a person.”
The women are smuggled by car, bus, boat and plane. Handed off in the dead of night, many are told they will pick oranges, work as dancers or as waitresses.
Others have decided to try their luck at prostitution, usually for what they assume will be a few lucrative months. They have no idea of the violence that awaits them.
The efficient, economically brutal routine–whether here in Israel, or in one of a dozen other countries–rarely varies. Women are held in apartments, bars and makeshift brothels; there they service, by their own count, as many as 15 clients a day. Often they sleep in shifts, four to a bed. The best that most hope for is to be deported after the police finally catch up with their captors.
Few ever testify. Those who do risk death. Last year in Istanbul, Turkey, according to Ukrainian police investigators, two women were thrown to their deaths from a balcony while six of their Russian friends watched.
In Serbia, also last year, said a young Ukrainian woman who escaped in October, a woman who refused to work as a prostitute was beheaded in public.
In Milan a week before Christmas, the police broke up a ring that was holding auctions in which women abducted from the countries of the former Soviet Union were put on blocks, partially naked, and sold at an average price of just under $1,000.
“This is happening wherever you look now.” said Michael Platzer, the Vienna-based head of operations for the United Nations’ Center for International Crime Prevention. “The mafia is not stupid. There is less law enforcement since the Soviet Union fell apart and more freedom of movement. The earnings are incredible. The overhead is low–you don’t have to buy cars and guns. Drugs you sell once and they are gone. Women can earn money for a long time.”
“Also,” he added, “the laws help the gangsters. Prostitution is semilegal in many places and that makes enforcement tricky. In most cases punishment is very light.”
In some countries, Israel among them, there is not even a specific law against the sale of human beings.
Mr. Platzer said that although certainly “tens of thousands” of women were sold into prostitution each year, he was uncomfortable with statistics since nobody involved has any reason to tell the truth.
“But if you want to use numbers.” he said, “think about this. Two hundred million people are victims of contemporary forms of slavery. Most aren’t prostitutes, of course, but children in sweatshops, domestic workers, migrants. During four centuries, 12 million people were believed to be involved in the slave trade between Africa and the New World. The 200 million–and many of course are women who are trafficked for sex–is a current figure. It’s happening now. Today.”
Distress Calls: Far-Flung Victims Provide Few Clues
The distress call came from Donetsk, the bleak center of coal production in southern Ukraine. A woman was screaming on the telephone line. Her sister and a friend were prisoners in a bar somewhere near Rome. They spoke no Italian and had no way out, but had managed, briefly, to get hold of a man’s cell phone.
“Do you have any idea where they are, exactly?” asked Olga Shved, who runs La Strada in Kiev, Ukraine’s new center dedicated to fighting the trafficking of women in Eastern Europe and the countries of the former Soviet Union.
The woman’s answer was no. Ms. Shved began searching for files and telephone numbers of the local consul, the police, anybody who could help.
“Do they know how far from Rome they are,” she asked, her voice tightening with each word. “What about the name of the street or the bar? Anything will help,” she said, jotting notes furiously as she spoke. “We can get the police on this, but we need something. If they call back, tell them to give us a clue. The street number. The number of a bus that runs past. One thing is all we need.”
Ms. Shved hung up and called officials at Ukraine’s Interior Ministry and the Foreign Ministry. Her conversations were short, direct and obviously a routine part of her job.
That is because Ukraine–and to a lesser degree its Slavic neighbors Russia and Belarus–has replaced Thailand and the Philippines as the epicenter of the global business in trafficking women. The Ukrainian problem has been worsened by a ravaged economy, an atrophied system of law enforcement, and criminal gangs that grow more brazen each year. Young European women are in demand, and Ukraine, a country of 51 million people, has a seemingly endless supply. It is not that hard to see why.
Neither Russia nor Ukraine reports accurate unemployment statistics. But even partial numbers present a clear story of chaos and economic dislocation. Federal employment statistics in Ukraine indicate that more than two-thirds of the unemployed are women. The Government also keeps another statistic: employed but not working. Those are people who technically have jobs, and can use company amenities like day-care centers and hospitals. But they do not work or get paid. Three-quarters are women. And of those who have lost their jobs since the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991, more than 80 percent are women.
The average salary in Ukraine today is slightly less than $30 a month, but it is half that in the small towns that criminal gangs favor for recruiting women to work abroad. On average, there are 30 applicants for every job in most Ukrainian cities. There is no real hope; but there is freedom.
In that climate, looking for work in foreign countries has increasingly become a matter of survival.
“It’s no secret that the highest prices now go for the white women,” said Marco Buffo, executive director of On the Road, an antitrafficking organization in northern Italy. “They are the novelty item now. It used to be Nigerians and Asians at the top of the market. Now it’s the Ukrainians.” Economics is not the only factor causing women to flee their homelands. There is also social reality. For the first time, young women in Ukraine and Russia have the right, the ability and the willpower to walk away from their parents and their hometowns. Village life is disintegrating throughout much of the former Soviet world, and youngsters are grabbing any chance they can find to save themselves. “After the wall fell down, the Ukrainian people tried to live in the new circumstances,” said Ms. Shved. “It was very hard, and it gets no easier. Girls now have few opportunities yet great freedom. They see ‘Pretty Woman,’ or a thousand movies and ads with the same point, that somebody who is rich can save them. The glory and ease of wealth is almost the basic point of the Western advertising that we see. Here the towns are dying. What jobs there are go to men. So they leave.”
First, however, they answer ads from employment agencies promising to find them work in a foreign country. Here again, Russian crime gangs play a central role. They often recruit people through seemingly innocuous “mail order bride” meetings. Even when they do not, few such organizations can operate without paying off one gang or another. Sometimes want ads are almost honest, suggesting that the women can earn up to $1,000 a month as “escorts” abroad. Often they are vague or blatantly untrue.
Recruiting Methods: Ads Make Offers Too Good to Be True
One typical ad used by traffickers in Kiev last year read: “Girls: Must be single and very pretty. Young and tall. We invite you for work as models, secretaries, dancers, choreographers, gymnasts. Housing is supplied. Foreign posts available. Must apply in person.”
One young woman who did, and made it back alive, described a harrowing journey. “I met with these guys and they asked if I would work at a strip bar.” she said. “Why not, I thought. They said we would have to leave at once. We went by car to the Slovak Republic where they grabbed my passport. I think they got me new papers there, but threatened me if I spoke out. We made it to Vienna, then to Turkey. I was kept in a bar and I was told I owed $5,000 for my travel. I worked for three days, and on the fourth I was arrested.”
Lately, the ads have started to disappear from the main cities– where the realities of such offers are known now. These days the appeals are made in the provinces, where their success is undiminished.
Most of the thousands of Ukrainian women who go abroad each year are illegal immigrants who do not work in the sex business. Often they apply for a legal visa–to dance, or work in a bar–and then stay after it expires.
Many go to Turkey and Germany, where Russian crime groups are particularly powerful. Israeli leaders say that Russian women–they tend to refer to all women from the former Soviet Union as Russian– disappear off tour boats every day. Officials in Italy estimate that at least 30,000 Ukrainian women are employed illegally there now.
Most are domestic workers, but a growing number are prostitutes, some of them having been promised work as domestics only to find out their jobs were a lie. Part of the problem became clear in a two-year study recently concluded by the Washington-based nonprofit group Global Survival Network: police officials in many countries just don’t care.
The network, after undercover interviews with gangsters, pimps and corrupt officials, found that local police forces–often those best able to prevent trafficking–are least interested in helping. Gillian Caldwell of Global Survival Network has been deeply involved in the study. “In Tokyo,” she said, “a sympathetic senator arranged a meeting for us with senior police officials to discuss the growing prevalence of trafficking from Russia into Japan. The police insisted it wasn’t a problem, and they didn’t even want the concrete information we could have provided. That didn’t surprise local relief agencies, who cited instances in which police had actually sold trafficked women back to the criminal networks which had enslaved them.”
Official Reactions: Best-Placed to Help, But Least Inclined
Complacency among police agencies is not uncommon.
“Women’s groups want to blow this all out of proportion,”said Gennadi V. Lepenko, chief of Kiev’s branch of Interpol, the international police agency. “Perhaps this was a problem a few years ago. But it’s under control now.”
That is not the view at Ukraine’s Parliament–which is trying to pass new laws to protect young women–or at the Interior Ministry.
“We have a very serious problem here and we are simply not equipped to solve it by ourselves.” said Mikhail Lebed, chief of criminal investigations for the Ukrainian Interior Ministry. “It is a human tragedy, but also, frankly, a national crisis. Gangsters make more from these women in a week than we have in our law enforcement budget for the whole year. To be honest, unless we get some help we are not going to stop it.”
But solutions will not be simple. Criminal gangs risk little by ferrying women out of the country; indeed, many of the women go voluntarily. Laws are vague, cooperation between countries rare and punishment of traffickers almost nonexistent. Without work or much hope of a future at home, an eager teen-ager will find it hard to believe that the promise of a job in Italy, Turkey or Israel is almost certain to be worthless.
“I answered an ad to be a waitress.” said Tamara, 19, a Ukrainian prostitute in a massage parlor near Tel Aviv’s old Central Bus Station, a Russian-language ghetto for the cheapest brothels. “I’m not sure I would go back now if I could. What would I do there, stand on a bread line or work in a factory for no wages?”
Tamara, like all other such women interviewed for this article, asked that her full name not be published. She has classic Slavic features, with long blond hair and deep green eyes. She turned several potential customers away so she could speak at length with a reporter. She was willing to talk as long as her boss was out. She said she was not watched closely while she remained within the garish confines of the “health club.”
“I didn’t plan to do this.” she said, looking sourly at the rich red walls and leopard prints around her. “They took my passport, so I don’t have much choice. But they do give me money. And believe me, it’s better than anything I could ever get at home.”
Yitzhak Tyler, the chief of undercover activities for the Haifa police, is a big, open-faced man who doesn’t mince words.
“We got a hell of a problem on our hands,” he said. The port city of 200,000 has become the easiest entryway for women brought to Israel to work as prostitutes–though by no means the only one. Sometimes they walk off tour boats, but increasingly they come with forged documents that enable them to live and work in Israel. These have often been bought or stolen from elderly Jewish women in Russia or Ukraine.
“This is a sophisticated, global operation,” Mr. Tyler said. “It’s evil, and it’s successful because the money is so good. These men pay $500 to $1,000 for a Ukrainian or Russian woman. Do you understand what I am telling you? They will buy these women and make a fortune out of them.”
To illustrate his point, Mr. Tyler grabbed a black calculator and started calling out the sums as he punched them in.
“Take a small place,” he said, “with 10 girls. Each has 15 to 20 clients a day. Multiply that by say 200 shekels. So say 30,000 shekels a day comes in to each place. Each girl works 25 days a month. Minimum.”
Mr. Tyler was busy doing math as he spoke. “So we are talking about 750,000 shekels a month, or about $215,000. A man often owns five of these places. That’s a million dollars. No taxes, no real overhead. It’s a factory with slave labor. And we’ve got them all over Israel.”
The Tropicana, in Tel Aviv’s bustling business district, is one of the busiest bordellos. The women who work there, like nearly all prostitutes in Israel today, are Russian. Their boss, however, is not.
“Israelis love Russian girls.” said Jacob Golan, who owns this and two other clubs, and spoke willingly about the business he finds so “successful.” “They are blonde and good-looking and different from us.” he said, chuckling as he drew his hand over his black hair. “And they are desperate. They are ready to do anything for money.”
Always filled with half-naked Russian women, the club is open around the clock. There is a schedule on the wall next to the receptionist–with each woman’s hours listed in a different color, and the days and shifts rotating, as at a restaurant or a bar. Next to the schedule a sign reads, “We don’t accept checks.” Next to that there is a poster for a missing Israeli woman.
There are 12 cubicles at the Tropicana where 20 women work in shifts, 8 during the daytime, 12 at night. Business is always booming, and not just with foreign workers. Israeli soldiers, with rifles on their shoulders, frequent the place, as do business executives and tourists.
Mr. Golan was asked if most women who work at the club do so voluntarily. He laughed heartily.
“I don’t get into that,” he said, staring vacantly across his club at four Russian women sitting on a low couch. “They are brought here and told to work. I don’t force them. I pay them. What goes on between them and the men they are with, how could that be my problem?”
Deterrent Strategies: A System That Fails Those Who Testify
Every once in a while, usually with great fanfare and plenty of advance notice, Mr. Golan gets raided. He pays a fine, and the women without good false documents are taken to prison. If they are deported, the charges against them are dropped. But if a woman wants to file a complaint, then she must remain in prison until a trial is held. “In the past four years,” Betty Lahan, prison director of Neve Tirtsa here, said, “I don’t know of a single case where a woman chose to testify.”
Such punitive treatment of victims is the rule rather than the exception. In Italy, where the police say killings of women forced into prostitution average one a month, Parliament tried to create a sort of witness protection program. But it only allowed women to stay in the country for one year and did nothing to hide their identities.
“The deck is just so completely stacked against the women in all this,” said Daniella Pompei, an immigration specialist with the community of Sant’Egidio, the Catholic relief agency in Rome. “The police is the last place these women want to go.” She said that only 20 women had ever used the protection program.
It is not clear who will stop the mob. On a trip to Ukraine late last year, Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke out about the new white slave trade that has developed so rapidly there. The United States and the European Union have plans to work together to educate young women about the dangers of working abroad. Other initiatives, like stays of deportation for prisoners, victims’ shelters and counseling, have also been discussed.
“I don’t care about any of that,” said Lena, a young Latvian, one of the inmates waiting to be deported here. “I just want to know one thing. How will I ever walk down the street like a human being again?”
THE STORY OF “ZVI MIGDAL”
THE INFAMOUS JEWISH PROSTITUTION CARTEL
By Ushi Derman
January 4, 2018
Towards the end of the 19th century, the very sound of the name America had a magical effect on the millions of Jews in Eastern Europe, and they could not care less whether it was northern or southern America. For them, “America” was not a spot on the map, but a dream, a desirable destination, a place where Jews sleep on a bed made of money, and can even “eat an orange every day!”, as Isaac Bashevis Singer reported in his autobiography.
For a huge lot of Jewish women, though, the American experience was quite different. Rather than a safe haven or a heaven of oranges, they found horror and humiliation. One of the most shocking disgraceful criminal affairs in modern Jewish history took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Like in most affairs, it was all about the financial principal of supply and demand. Back then Argentina was becoming one of the most leading economies in the world and was even called “the world’s granary”, thanks to its successful striving agricultural industries. As a results, by the end of the 19th century, Argentina was full of immigrants, Jews included. In 1895 there were appr. 6,000 Jews living in Argentina, and less than two decades later, in 1914, there were already 117,000. The city of Buenos Aires grew in frantic rates, not only Jews were rushing in, but also many immigrants from all over the world. One interesting characteristic of the Jewish immigration to Bueno Aires, that affected our story a great deal, was the odd ration between the genders: almost ten times more men than women.
A group of corrupted Jews were more than willing to demonstrate patriotism, and started to deliver the goods – literally. The growing demand for women led to the establishment of “Zvi Migdal” – a large powerful prostitution cartel established and owned by Jewish immigrants from Poland. Named after one of the founders, it was one of the largest networks in the South America, with branches and connections in Shanghai, Johannesburg, Rio de Janeiro and many other places.
At the peak of their activity they had tens of thousands of Jewishwomen working for them, some 2,000 brothels and a state of the art organizational mechanism working efficiently according to cruel mafia codes.
The main wing was established in Buenos Aires, concealed as a charity society. They were called Ruffians (Spanish for pimps), they traded and abused and enslaved unsuspecting Jewish women, just for money. The cartel had an original marketing tactic: every once in a while a polite Jewish gentleman used to come to the Jewish communities in Eastern Europe and spread ads calling “Jewish girls from good homes” offering either jobs at homes of rich Jews in Buenos Aires, or marriage. Feminism was still at its beginning back then, and the career opportunities of young women were scarce, they usually could expect to be no more mothers and housewives – therefore they were easily tempted to respond to the ads.
While still on the ship to Argentina they were locked, beaten, raped and starved, which the Jewish pimps referred to as their “re-education”. The Ruffians called these trips “remonte”, a term from the cattle trade.
Landing in Buenos Aires they were herded to a house where they had to undress and be inspected by pimps, who sold them in auctions as sex slaves. The “owners” – as well as customers – included officials, judges, and journalists.
The relations between the local Jewish community and the Ruffians were complicated. The local Jews called them “impure”, would not associate with them nor rent or sell them houses.
However, the ruffians wished to participate in prayers and ceremonies, and assumed generous donations would easily pave their way into the community as distinguished members.
It worked for them – but only for a while. One night, Nahum Sorkin, a known Zionist, was standing outside the Jewish theater trying to stop them from entering. Since then, the entire community started to condemn and denunciate the ruffians. They were no longer allowed in the synagogue nor in the cemetery. In response, the rich ruffians erected a fancy synagogue in the center of the Jewish quarter. The entrance floor was a glorious praying hall, while the upper floor was a brothel. During the synagogue’s inauguration the ruffians went outside with the Torah in their arms and circled the building, in front of the disgusted appalled neighbors who dared not interfere.
“Zvi Migdal” was active uninterruptedly for over four decades. The bosses were fearless, paying off every man who might jeopardize them: immigration officials, cops and judges that attempted to shut the cartel down; politicians; and city hall seniors who authorized the construction of the synagogue/brothel.
“Zvi Migdal” eventually fell, thanks to the efforts of three people: one Jewish prostitute, a police officer and a judge. In October 1922, Rachel Lea Liberman boarded the ship “Polania”, docking in Hamburg, with her two little boys. They were traveling to Buenos Aires, to join her husband Jacob Farber, a Jewish tailor who sailed to Argentina the previous year to look for a job. Their correspondence shows that Lea had high expectations from the new world across the sea. Nothing could prepare her for her bleak unfortunate fate. About a year after her arrival to Buenos Aires, her husband died of tuberculosis. Now she was a widow in a foreign country, mother of two, without a language and with no means of livelihood. Soon she had to sell her body.
Working for “Zvi Migdal” for several years, Lea managed to buy a house and to establish a small business. When she wished to resign and receive her share, the Zvi Migdal bosses tricked her into marring a charismatic stranger, who was in fact a mean violent sadist pimp, who forced her to work as a prostitute again.
Desperately – but also courageously – she turned to Julio Alsogaray, a police superintendent, known for his integrity and spotless measures. She presented him with evidences against the cartel’s bosses, which were carefully examined by the judge Dr. Rodriguez Ocampo, who did not succumb to the money and presents offered to him by the “Migdal” men.
The trial ended in September 1930, with 108 convictions, and long periods of imprisonment for all heads of the organization. After intensive public pressure, hundreds of Jewish pimps were imprisoned and deported to Uruguay. Towards the end of the 1930’s “Zvi Migdal” eventually ceased to exist altogether. The scars in the masses of hearts and bodies of young women were however irrecoverable forever.
By Ushi Derman
Jews are allowed by their “God” to keep slaves. The modern day Israel takes advantage of this divine permission.
“Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. You can will them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.” (Leviticus 25:44-46)
- Prostitution and Prejudice: The Jewish Fight against White Slavery, 1870-1939 by Edward Bristow
Oxford, 340 pp, £15.00, November 1982, ISBN 0 19 822588 1
- Peasants, Rebels and Outcastes by Mikiso Hane
Scolar, 297 pp, £12.50, October 1982, ISBN 0 85967 670 6
Richard Titmuss has cast light on civilisation by comparing what happens when blood is sold and when it is donated. Edward Bristow’s subject, likewise, is a service which may be either donated or traded – or obtained under duress. His exploration of it takes him into unfamiliar recesses of public and private depravity, and shines a torch into the laundry room of Judaism.
This is to take white slavery as seriously as it was taken in the years before far worse befell in Europe. But it was never easy to keep a solemn countenance in the Runyonesque world that greeted the transatlantic voyager – stuffed full of promises and stowed away in a coal hole – who happened to find herself in Buenos Aires or the Lower East Side ghetto. Take the café at 92 Second Avenue, New York. Its owner was Abe (‘the Rabbi’) Rabbelle, president of the Independent Benevolent Association, ‘the scaffolding for Jewish commercial vice’. (Its initials must have escaped everyone’s memory when our own IBA was formed.) The listed habitués included ‘Kid Rags, mack and stuss house owner, Crazy Itch, gambler, Charlie Argument, strike breaker,’ and other leftovers from the cast of Guys and Dolls; while among the whores who might drop in for a word or two in passing was ‘the very successful Jenny Morris, nearly six feet tall, who was known as “Jenny the Factory” because of her rather unusual capacity for work’.
Bristow’s four-part counterpoint of criminality, market forces, sexual appetite and religious organisation is fully worked out in Buenos Aires. Today, this city’s historic role as the sin capital of the New World has faded far below Fleet Street’s horizon: even the Sun missed its opportunity last summer to speculate at feature length about the occupation of the Junta’s grandmothers. But during the colonisation of Argentina a century ago, ‘everything was arranged for high profits: the imbalance of numbers between males and females, the Latin cultural toleration of prostitutes, thorough police and political corruption, weak laws and new shipping routes.’
East European Jews never monopolised transnational prostitution systems – far from it. But enough of them were in the right place at the right time for an explanation to be worth seeking.
The first man through the revolving door was a Hungarian, ‘Bohemian Dovidl’, who had been brought up in his elder brother’s licensed brothel in Budapest. In 1867 he read in a newspaper that scarcity of women was the only drawback to the Eldorado on the La Plata coast of South America. He promptly took ship, and on arrival in Buenos Aires had himself baptised by the Jesuits. They thought highly of his plan to bring women into the country, and even advanced him money for the fares of the first batch, who were sold on arrival at windfall prices as the importer’s ‘daughters’ and ‘nieces’ to respectable men desperate for wives. Or so runs the story – one of the few which Bristow cannot verify from other sources and has to call ‘emblematic of the truth’.
Free-range arrangements of this kind later gave place to battery methods. But Buenos Aires is unintelligible without Galicia. One should begin with the supply side, not the demand side. As the eloquent and – in the social context of pre-1914 Vienna – courageous rabbi Joseph Bloch put it,
‘one must have seen the misery of the Polish Jewish cities for oneself, in order to understand that a trip to Buenos Aires is not frightening.’
Life expectancy was low – it was always a choice between VD abroad or malnutrition at home – and there were frequent calls from Latin America for new recruits or ‘remounts’, as they were called in a phrase that would have appealed to Sir Harry Flashman. Hersch Gottlieb, Sam Lubelski, ‘Napoleon’ Dickenfaden and other notorieties negotiated for them with agents and principals (that is, parents) at the equivalent of trade fairs in Poland and Austrian Galicia. One well-known exchange point, where Israel Meyrowitz was arrested for extradition to Germany, was the Hotel Silliger in Oswiecim (Auschwitz). The bargaining procedure is described vividly enough in Sholem Asch’s novel Mottke the Thief, though Bristow says that the facts of the traffic as a whole are closer to darker Yiddish fiction such as Hirschbein’s Miriam and Mendele’s Valley of Tears. The persistent tales of auction blocks – black slave style – in restaurants at ports of arrival may or may not be well-founded, but ‘it seems likely that something like nine thousand(9000) Jewish women came to practise prostitution in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay during the quarter-century 1889-1914.’ Jewish procurers shared with the French the two hundred or so licensed houses in Buenos Aires at this period. Doubtless many of the girls were willing enough, at least initially, and the survivors, as they aged, became madams themselves. But there was nothing exceptional in Clara Adam’s experience with the kaftane Sigmund Reicher.
‘Lured from Germany by his offer of employment as a seamstress, she was raped during the journey by one of his accomplices, and virtually locked in a brothel from which she finally escaped in her slip at four o’clock one morning.’
The Paris journalist Albert Londres, author of an engaging and widely-read documentary novel The Road to Buenos Ayres (1928), understandably concentrated upon the ‘Franchucas’ who formed the aristocracy of the trade: they commanded five pesos a time to the Polaks’ two, and were also quicker to realise the productivity gains obtainable from oral variations. But he traced the East Europeans, too, from the sordid settlements outside Warsaw to the queues for their services in the casitas, where a really good worker could turn 400 tricks in a week. ‘The veritable White Slave Traffic, such as is conceived by the popular imagination, is carried on by the Polaks … on the German model, that is to say, very methodically.’
Not until 1930 did respectable Jews in Buenos Aires, by then the large majority, feel strong enough to mount prosecutions and make them stick on the Zvi Migdal, the fraternity that had been founded to protect the interests of ‘the unclean ones’, as they were called. Zvi Migdal paid for the separate burial grounds which the rabbis demanded:
‘In keeping with the South American custom, each gravestone had an enamelled photograph attached. One could study the features of the deceased pimp – fat, homberg, handlebar moustache – and read the incongruous inscription, “In the garden of Eden his soul rests.” ’
The founder of Zvi Migdal judged that religion would keep the women happy, if nothing else would, and he built them their own synagogue.
The term ‘white slavery’ was first used in the context of prostitution by a British vice campaigner, Dr Michael Ryan, as early as 1839, and it was used with special reference to Jewish procurers in the East End of London. When the Jewish Chronicle put aside the sense of shame in its community and decided to notice the problem, seventy years later, its comments went much further than might have been expected, identifying in the procurers’ activities on the international market ‘what is really an inversion of certain special characteristics with which Jews are endowed’.
By then London, though it became the home of the formidable Silver gang until they moved lock, stock and brothel to South Africa in 1898, was less remarkable for actual white slave traffic than for public hysteria about it. The Criminal Law Amendment Act 1912 even provided for the flogging of convicted pimps: according to Dr Bristow, this measure sent a lot of them on their travels again to countries with more indulgent penal systems.
(The reader of this absorbing book must expect his liberal assumptions or sensibilities to be put in check here and there.)
Throughout these pages, and not least because the author scrupulously refrains from labouring the point, the reader finds himself relating Jewish white slavery to the Final Solution and the climate of public opinion in Europe that eased it into German policy. In the Vienna of Hitler’s youth, the brothels of Mesdames Schick and Sachs, and the corruption of a certain police inspector Piss, were as famous as Sachertorte. This helped Hitler to write later in Mein Kampf:
‘In no other city of Western Europe could the relationship between Jewry and prostitution and even now the white slave traffic be studied better.’
It naturally made no difference to anti-Semites that the victims of the traffickers were themselves almost exclusively Jewish.
As Rabbi Bloch perceived, white slavery had become ‘the sexualisation of the blood libel’, which as late as 1900 in Central Europe put Jews on trial for the ritual murder of Christian children. Bloch also firmly maintained, and Bristow concurs, that anti-Semitism was a cause rather than a consequence of white slavery. That is, if either the Tsars or the commissars of Russia had been less concerned to discriminate against their Jewish population, the pool of squalor and starvation that made the traffic possible might never have formed.
But once it became clear internationally that in Latin America a substantial proportion (elsewhere a small minority) of the early Jewish settlement were engaged in mädchenhandels, official Jewry found itself in a lethal double bind. If it kept quiet about the unclean ones, it would be accused of winking at wickedness for commercial gain. But if it expelled offenders from synagogues, set up protection committees and pursued prosecutions, the whole problem would become notorious. Either way, Judaism was saddled with a public relations disaster beside which the brothels of Paddington were but a fleabite on the rump of the Church Commissioners.
This choice was itself defined in religious terms by sensitive Jews. For Claude Montefiore, whose collection of printed papers in the London Library is used here to good effect, it was a choice between chillul hashem (‘defiling the Name’) or kiddush(‘sanctification’, hence ‘integrity’). To their credit, many brave and tireless Jews on both sides of the Atlantic chose to expose the truth let it fall where it might. They ranged from Bertha Pappenheim (the ‘Anna O’ of the Freud-Breuer casebook, whose multiple life surely deserves a comprehensive biography) to less celebrated inquirers, social workers and publicists. But they were too close to the traffic to pull its roots up and disentangle them.
Even Bristow is better at research than analysis. The pious blamed deficient upbringing, and the progressive blamed primal poverty in the Old World or sweatshop drudgery in the New – Mamie Pinzer or someone like her must have been the author of the New York Yiddish comment on street-walking quoted by Lincoln Steffens: Es ist besser wie packin pants.
As the Victorian Irish proved to the satisfaction of John Burns, however, not all victims of malnutrition and unemployment succumb to prostitution. The medical educationalist Abraham Flexner – evidently the anonymous ‘student’ whom Theodore Dreiser mentions in his introduction to Londres’s book – spent two years at John D. Rockefeller’s request compiling his report on Prostitution in Europe (1914). Returning to the topic in his autobiography a quarter-century later, he concluded: ‘Prostitution occurs not solely as the result of economic pressure, but within the area of economic pressure under the influence of other conditions’ – among which he cited, relevantly enough for our own London, not just alcohol and low mentality, but:
‘the break-up of home or the destruction of home life, resulting from the constant influx of detached young men and women from the country into the large towns. Loneliness, sheer loneliness, even among employed persons, is not infrequently a decisive factor.’
Given the scale of rural depopulation and immigrant male labour that Europe has seen since 1945, what an epidemic of prostitution the pill and permissiveness must have saved us from.
Before returning to the contribution that the family psychology and religious organisation of the Ostjuden made to the system Bristow describes, it is worth glancing across to the aetiology of Japanese white slavery, which has recently been explored with equal skill in Mikiso Hane’s Peasants, Rebels and Outcastes. Most of the same techniques of enticement, stowing away, shipboard rape and compulsory indebtedness were borrowed by Japanese procurers. Or perhaps they invented them, for in Nagasaki, a city more influenced than others in pre-Meiji Japan by Christianity and foreign trade together, the traditional Japanese population controls of infanticide and abortion were less practised, and surplus female children were commonly sold abroad. The Japanese variant is that the slaves were younger (twelve upwards) and fared worse.
‘The life story of practically every one of the karayuki is an unmitigated horror story,’ writes Hane. Another difference is that in Japan the practice was ended, not by endogenic agitation as in Europe and America, but by the reforms of the American Occupation after 1945, preceded only by conscientious but inevitably ineffective campaigning by the Japanese Salvation Army under Yamamuro Gunpei in the 1900s.
There is or was something in common between the Jewish and Japanese family structures. Both tended to reduce girls to chattels and expected unquestioning obedience of them. The Galician girls evidently followed the decisions of their relatives and received the blandishments of the alphonses with a sleepwalking trust in the wisdom of the community, a trust very similar to the temper which undid so many millions when the wagon called for them in 1935-45.
(With hindsight, of course, even the girls drafted to the stews of Constantinople may have fared better than the siblings they left behind in Poland, but it would be a bold white-slaver who claimed this to his credit.)
The role of specifically religious obedience is summed up in the ingenious use the Jewish procurers made of stillah chuppah, a form of ritual marriage which any adult Jew could witness. This enabled a ruthless man to court a girl, marry her in the eyes of the synagogue (but not of the law), and later coerce her into prostitution. Even without prostitution, an abandoned wife – an agunah – was helpless without a get or certificate of divorce from her ‘husband’, and had no hope of remarrying. The coupling of this system to the street wisdom and commercial instincts of young male Jews – the ‘inversion’ mentioned by the Jewish Chronicle – did not in itself cause the white slave traffic, but it certainly made it a more practicable proposition.
One of the many sad ironies in the story Bristow has to tell is that the authorities – whether Catholic or Tsarist – had a simple counter to this stratagem available to them if they had condescended to apply it, and if Orthodox Jews could have brought themselves to co-operate. Rabbis could have been obliged to officiate at all stillah chuppah ceremonies, and licensed to give such unions civil validity too. But in Eastern Europe at the time, that would have been a solution too Western – and perhaps too Christian – to contemplate.
All these threads are drawn together by Bristow with considerable skill. There are rather more literals, inconsistencies of spelling and index omissions than one still expects of this publisher. But it can fairly be said of Bristow, as Dreiser said of Albert Londres, that ‘not Fabre himself, travelling here and there after his spiders, caterpillars and flies, has laboured more diligently or inspected more closely.’
- SLAVES AND CITIZENS
Jon Elster [3 June 1982]
- Ancient Slavery and Modern Ideology by M.I. Finley
- Economy and Society in Ancient Greece by M.I. Finley
- The Legacy of Greece: A New Appraisal edited by M.I. Finley
“Some fifteen years ago, in the course of reading up the history of technology, I came across an article by M.I. Finley, of whom I then knew nothing, on ‘Technical Innovat . . .”
- White Slaves
Christopher Driver [3 March 1983]
- Prostitution and Prejudice: The Jewish Fight against White Slavery, 1870-1939 by Edward Bristow
JEWS AND “WHITE SLAVERY”
Breaking silence, Patriots owner Kraft ‘truly sorry’ over prostitution scandal
Kraft, one of some 300 men charged with solicitation in Florida massage parlor bust, says he has ‘extraordinary respect for women’
By AP24 March 2019,
MIAMI — New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is apologizing after being charged in a Florida massage parlor prostitution investigation.
“I am truly sorry,” Kraft said in a statement Saturday. “I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard.”
The statement was first reported by ESPN.
Kraft said he has “extraordinary respect for women,” adding that his morals were shaped by his late wife. Myra Kraft died in 2011.
“Throughout my life, I have always tried to do the right thing. The last thing I would ever want to do is disrespect another human being,” he said.
“I expect to be judged not by my words, but by my actions. And through those actions, I hope to regain your confidence and respect,” Kraft said.
Kraft pleaded not guilty last month to two counts of misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution.
This week, attorneys for 77-year-old Kraft and other men charged in multiple Florida counties asked a judge to block the release of video recordings that police say show them engaging in sexual acts. The Associated Press is part of a media coalition trying to get the evidence in the case released.
Prosecutors have offered to drop the charges if Kraft and the men enter a diversion program for first-time offenders. That would include an admission they would be found guilty if their case went to trial, a $5,000 fine, 100 hours of community service and attendance in a class on the dangers of prostitution and its connection to human trafficking. They would also have to make a court appearance and be tested for sexually transmitted diseases.
Attorneys representing other defendants told the AP their clients won’t accept the offer because it is much tougher than what is offered in other Palm Beach County solicitation cases.
Kraft has an arraignment court hearing scheduled Thursday, though he is not expected to appear in person.
Kraft is one of about 300 men charged between Palm Beach and Orlando as part of a crackdown on illicit massage parlors and human trafficking. Ten parlors have closed and employees have also been charged. Many of the women are originally from China and were forced to live in the spas and not allowed to leave without an escort, according to investigators.
According to police records, Kraft was chauffeured on the evening of January 19 to a Jupiter massage parlor, where officers secretly recorded him engaging in a sex act and then handing over an undetermined amount of cash.
Investigators said Kraft returned 17 hours later. Kraft, who is worth $6 billion, was again videotaped engaging in sex acts before paying with a $100 bill and another bill, police said.
Hours later, he was in Kansas City for the AFC Championship game, where his Patriots defeated the Chiefs. His team then won the Super Bowl in Atlanta, the Patriots’ sixth NFL championship under his ownership.
William Burck, one of Kraft’s attorneys, told ESPN on Friday that police improperly obtained a search warrant to secretly install cameras inside the Jupiter massage parlor.
Kraft, who grew up in a Conservative Jewish family in Brookline, Massachusetts, was recently named the winner of the $1 million Genesis Prize, the so-called Jewish Nobel, for having “spoken out publicly and donated generously to organizations combating prejudices, including anti-Semitism and the delegitimization of the State of Israel.”
“[Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion] could hard imagine that Jewish women would stoop to crime or prostitution. When an associate, Meyer Weisgal, who resembled David Ben-Gurion, once told him humorously that a girl had walked up to him on a London street and offered her services, overwhelmed by the idea of sleeping with the ‘Israeli prime minister.’ Ben-Gurion, clearly troubled, was interested in only one thing: ‘Was she Jewish?'”
— Dan Kurzman, 1983, p. 39
‘But where do Jews enter the picture?’ I asked him.
‘Ah!’ said Simon [Wiesenthal], slapping his knee. ‘I haven’t told you something else. A few years ago, I have a talk with a man who went to school with Hitler. I ask him what Hitler was like in school and he says, ‘Normal. But maybe this hatred began after got this infection from a Jewish whore.’
‘Are you saying that Hitler caught syphillis from a Jewish prostitute?’ I asked increduously.
Wiesenthal laughed and said: ‘What’s the matter? You think only Jews can catch diseases from prostitutes?’
‘No, but were Jewish prostitutes common in Austria?’
‘Why not? Is there a Gentile monopoly on prostitution?’
‘I just don’t see it as a vocation for a nice Jewish girl.’
‘A nice Jewish girl,’ Simon mimicked. ‘You have those ‘nice Jewish girls’ in Israel, too, these days and they had them in Vienna years ago — when there were more Jews.’
— Alan Levy,
The Wiesenthal File. William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company,
Grand Rapids, MI, 1993 p. 18
At the end of the 19th and beginning of the twentieth century, Jews were deeply involved in what was popularly called “white slavery”: international prostitution rings. “White slavery,” notes scholar Albert Lindemann, “was a concern of Jewish leaders throughout the world, who recognized it as a special problem.” [LINDEMANN, p. 33]
[Jews have also dominated the pornography and commercial sexploitation business, a trend which continues to this day — see Mass Media section]
“Between 1880 and 1939,” notes scholar Edward Bristow, “the Jews played a conspicuous role in ‘white slavery,’ as the commercial prostitution of that era was dramatically called. Not only was this Jewish participation conspicuous, it was historically unprecedented, geographically widespread, and fraught with collective political dangers.” [BRISTOW, p. 1]
“Jewish trafficking,” says Bristow, “was anchored in brothel keeping, women freelanced or kept houses while their husbands procured … Jewish traffickers also supplied Gentile-run houses.” [BRISTOW, p. 56-57]
Rooted largely in Eastern and Central Europe where they “dominated the international traffic out of the area,” [BRISTOW, p. 2]
Jews were involved in prostitution rings that networked, wrote Arthur Mora (of London’s Jewish Association for the Protection of Girls and Women) in 1903, to “almost all parts of North and South Africa, to India, China, Japan, Philippine Island, North and South America, and also to many of the countries of Europe.” [BRISTOW, p. 1]
Jewish criminals trafficked women under their control virtually anywhere, also including the major cities of Bulgaria, Bosnia, Greece, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Ceylon, Manchuria, South Africa, Rhodesia, and Mozambique. [BRISTOW, p. 181]
“By 1900,” says Bristow, “Jewish commercial vice was largely incorporated in underworld elements and many of it participants were predators of the poor.” [BRISTOW, p. 89]
Jewish pimps, procurers, and traffickers preyed mostly on non-Jewish women, but even large numbers of Jewish women were part of their stables.
In 1872, for example, Jewish prostitutes in Warsaw numbered 17% of the known prostitution population, in Krakow 27%, and in Vilna 47%. [BRISTOW, p. 23]
Within the Jewish community itself, it was not uncommon for recruiters to marry innocent Jewish young women and “deposit them in foreign brothels.” [BRISTOW, p. 25]
Many of the Jewish criminal underworld figures apparently saw no gap between their day-to-day activities and their religious lives, often maintaining their religious obligations. A Warsaw thug, Shilem Letzski, organized a small synagogue for Jewish “prostitutes, madams, pimps, and thieves.” This criminal community even had a rabbinical court “to settle disputes between pimps.” [BRISTOW, p. 60]
In Constantinople, prostitutes contributed money to “have their pimps called to Torah on holidays.” [SCHNEIDER, p. 225]
In New York City, “a public school and a large synagogue were situated right next door to the house of prositution.” [RUBINOW, I., 1959, p. 114-115]
In Buenos Aires, Argentina, notes Donna Guy, the Jewish pimp organization called the Varsovia Society:
“ostensibly functioned as a mutual aid society … In fact, the Varsovia
consisted of pimps who wanted to maintain their business and still lead
a religious life … Varsovia associates established their own synagogue
on Guemes Street in the midst of the traditional bordello district.”
[GUY, p. 22]
Israeli scholar Robert Rockaway notes also, for example, that prominent Jewish American mobster Longy Zwillman:
“always remained sensitive to his Jewish upbringings.”
When a close friend died, and the funeral was conducted in a church, Zwillman refused to attend. As he explained it, he was an ancestral member of the Jewish priest caste (the Cohens) and it was religiously forbidden to him to be with a dead body in a room. [ROCKAWAY, R., 1993, p. 30]
Dr. Louis Maretsky, the head of the B’nai B’rith in Germany, forlornly noted in 1912 that at least 271 of 402 prostitution traffickers on a Hamburg police list were Jewish; in reviewing similar lists for Eastern Europe and South Africa at least 374 of 644 were from the Jewish community. [BRISTOW, p. 56]
(No mention here is made of even higher possible percentages: as explored later, it has long been a tradition for many Jews in their diaspora to formally change their identifiable Jewish names). Concerning Galicia, Maretsky wrote that:
“the prominence of Jewish traffickers and brothel operators there is no doubt. From the files of the Austrian and German police there were 111 Jewish traffickers active in Galicia and the neighboring province of Bukovina for 1904-08 alone.” [BRISTOW, p. 56]
By 1889 Jewish women ran 203 of 289 (70%) of the licensed brothels in the “Pale of Settlement” (encompassing over 20 provinces in eastern Poland and western Russia — an area where Jews were about 12% of the population). 1122 of 5127 (22%) licensed prostitutes in this area were Jewish. [BRISTOW, p. 63]
The grievous political dangers for local Jewry in the context of enduring interethnic hostilities, when 78% of the rest of the women were Gentile, many indentured in Jewish houses, is obvious.
Further in the West, 16 of 19 licensed brothels in Warsaw were run by Jewish women; prostitutes in the low-class establishments were expected to service 40-50 customers a day, up to 60-70 on Holy Days. (In 1905 the respectable part of the Jewish Warsaw community rioted against the brothels; 40 whorehouses — legal and illegal — were reported destroyed, 8 persons killed, and 100 injured). [BRISTOW, p. 61]
In Minsk, Jews ran all four legitimate houses of ill repute. In the Russian province of Kherson (which includes the city of Odessa) 30 of 36 licensed brothels were Jewish-owned. The American Consul in Odessa wrote in 1908 that the “whole ‘business’ of prostitution is almost exclusively in the hands of the Jews.” [BRISTOW, p. 56]
Martin Fido notes another genre of Jewish Eastern European profiteer in the prostitution world, in England:
“Latvian ponces accompanied [prostitutes] to help them cross borders and find accomodation and working premises. These men were despised by police and by some of the criminal fraternity for ‘living off immoral earnings.’ But they were not pimps … They were effectively travel agents, couriers and managers in strange and unfriendly places. Their arrival in London ensured that a major strand of prostitution would be controlled by organized crime. One of these Latvians, Max Kassell, was still running a small stable of hookers in the 1930s, when he was murdered in Soho … Jewish dominance of the East End [of London] and its crime was reflected in their Yiddish name, ‘spielers’ (places for games). In the Brick Lane neighborhood, Isaac Bogard, a Jewish villain whose swarthy complexion and tightly curled black hair earned him the nickname ‘Darky the Coon,’ extended his interests. He began in the early years of the 20th century by supplying muscle for street traders who wanted to prevent newcomers from moving in, but he moved on to managing prostitutes and drinking clubs.” [FIDO, M., 2000, p. 19-20]
Then in London there was Harry ‘Little Hubby’ Distleman, “a Jewish club manager, gambler and possibly part-sharer (with his brother) in a chain of brothels.” [FIDO, M., 2000, p. 31]
Jewish author Chaim Bermant noted in the Jewish Chronicle in 1993 that:
“In the same period (1903-1909), 151 aliens [in Great Britain], most of them Jewish, were convicted for keeping brothels, and 521 for soliciting … Rabbi Avigdor Schonfeld … protested that to draw attention to the existence of Jewish prostitutes harmed the good name of the Jewish people.” [JEWISH CHRONICLE, 1-15-93]
More recently, Jewish singer Eddie Fisher recalls that:
“while performing in England in the late 1950s I had become friendly with a Jewish song plugger, a man who eventually left the music business to open a very exclusive whorehouse.” [FISHER, E., 1999, p. 293] A little later, there was the infamous Colin Levy:
“In 1973, one of the better-known and more appreciated solo practioners
of that tony [London prostitution] underworld was Norma Levy (nee Mary
Russell), an Irish-born prostitute in her mid-twenties whose career ‘on the
game’ was being managed by her husband Colin Levy, a petty crook …
In 1973, Colin Levy found himself short of money. Aware that one of
Norma’s patrons was the celebrated Lord Lambton, he decided to solve
his problem with a bit of blackmail. Camera in hand, he lay in wait outside
Norma’s bedroom during Lambton’s next visit to her flat. At the appropriate time, at a signal from Norma, he burst into the room. With flashlights popping in his face, the stunned Lambton was frozen on film, in
flagrante delicto, for posterity.” [Levy’s blackmail failed, but there was
a resultant scandal, including the ethics of newspaper (where Levy tried
to sell his photos] that published accounts of the story] [KIERNAN, T.,
1986, p. 162]
In Vienna, authorities knew of about 50 Jewish prostitution traffickers based in Czernowitz, “and they were a very inbred lot extending over two generations.” [BRISTOW, p. 74]
The most publicized ‘white slavery’ trial occurred in 1892, in Lemberg (once also called Lvov, then a Polish provincial capital, today called Lviv in Ukraine), where 27 traffickers — all Jews — were prosecuted for ensnaring women to go to Constantinople, Egypt, and India. Some of the women recruits understood their tasks, but others “were maids, others fieldworkers, one a butcher’s helper, all apparently promised honest jobs.” [BRISTOW, p. 74]
(Lemberg, “a cradle of Zionism from the 1880s onward,” also had anti-Jewish riots in 1918. [KRAJEWSKI, S., p. 340] )
There was a tradition of Yiddish folk songs about Jewish criminal behavior, like this:
“I am Salve, the thief,
Four brothers are we;
One is hungry, the other well fed,
But thieves all four are we.
One is a pickpocket,
The second a pimp, a handsome fellow;
One is a hijacker on the lookout for
And I am a house thief.
A pimp is common,
As all agree:
From his own wife,
He gets the disease
To be a hijacker is bitter:
You can rupture your lung,
It’s hard to earn something with some of
The best thing is to be a house thief.”
[RUBIN, R., 1979]
“In an age of pandemic anti-Semitism,” says Bristow, “a Jewish pimp was a political as well as a social force,” [BRISTOW, p. 4] very emotionally reinforcing anti-Jewish sentiments of the day. Jews were already blamed in central Europe for a financial crash in 1873 and economic competition between Jews and non-Jews was heightening.
A young and enraged Adolf Hitler paid particular attention to the highly visible phenomenon of Jewish street hustling and prostitution rings in Vienna, and was incensed that many non-Jewish women were coerced into the largely Jewish-run trade.
“In no other city of Western Europe,” he wrote in Mein Kampf, “could the relationship between Jewry and prostitution, and even now the white slave traffic, be studied better than in Vienna … an icy shudder ran down my spine when seeing for the first time the Jew as an evil, shameless, and calculating manager of this shocking vice, the outcome of the scum of the big city.” [BRISTOW, p. 84]
The Jewish prostitution business extended from Europe across the world, where it sometimes overlapped with French, Italian, Chinese, and other rings. In the Punjabi (Indian) capital of Lahore, “Jewish pimps were in the habit of leaving their women penniless only to reappear after workers had accumulated some money.” [BRISTOW, p. 195]
In Rio de Janeiro Jewish immigrants from Russia, Poland, Hungary, and Romania were so much identified with prostitution in the late 1800’s that “the kaftan, a Jew’s traditional long gown, became synonymous with pimp.” [BRISTOW, p. 113]
Thirty-nine Jews were expelled from Brazil in 1879 for soliciting women for prostitution and running illegal whorehouses. [BRISTOW, p. 114]
Of 199 licensed whorehouses in Buenos Aires in 1909, 102 were run by Jews and more than half the prostitutes were Jewish. [FRIED, p. 71]
4,248 Jewish women were registered for licensed brothels in Buenos Aires between 1880-1913, and those represented only the licensed ones. Edward Bristow estimates that 9,000 Jewish women immigrants came to Brazil in a 25-year span in that era as prostitutes (many were no doubt highly transient), when the total Jewish population of Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay combined amounted to less than 60,000 people in 1910. [BRISTOW, p. 119]
In 1889, the Buenos Aires Bulletin Continental reported that 200 German/Austrian women were held against their will by Jewish pimps from Poland. [GUY, p. 5]
“Jewish procurers,” says Donna Guy,
“… became an organized ring in major cities all over the world.
They were particularly powerful in the Argentine port cities of Buenos Aires and Rosario … [GUY, p. 10]
Turn-of-the-century reports by the Hamburg B’nai B’rith [a Jewish fraternal organization] concluded that most prostitutes in Buenos Aires were Jewish and that traffickers ‘dress with ostentatious elegance, wear large diamonds, go to the theatre or opera daily; they have their own clubs and organizations where wares are sorted, auctioned, and sold … They have their own secret wireless code, are well organized, and– heavens! — in South America everything is possible.” [GUY, p. 19]
“Pooling their financial resources in a kind of guild,” notes another Jewish scholar, Howard Sachar,
“the [Polish Jewish] newcomers [to Argentina] in 1909 controlled slightly more than half the nearly two hundred licensed brothels in Buenos Aires. Jewish women served as their madams, and Jewish immigrant girls often were recruited and lured into their hands as prostitutes.” [SACHAR, H., 1985, p. 283]
In Cuba, Jews “became engaged in the ‘White Slave Trade,'” says Robert Levine, “importing prostitutes — some Jewish — from Poland … Many women recruited to the business had been trapped in the Russian and Polish Pale and throughout the Hapsburg Empire by force or fraud, and the human dilemma was great.” [LEVINE, p. 66]
Incredibly, even in Germany, where Jews have such a horrible history, such Jewish-related problems still bubble beneath the surface. In 1994 a US News and World Report reporter noted the observations of a Frankfort policeman patrolling Precinct 4:
“‘It’s all owned by Jews,’ [Bernd] Gayk says of the train station’s red light
district. ‘Practically everything in this area is owned by German Jews.
There is a single cabaret here owned by a German, but the rest belongs
to the Jews.'” [MARKS, J., p. 42, 44]
Shockingly, even shortly after the Holocaust when there were only a few thousand Jews left in Germany, they remained prominent in the prostitution business there. In 1961 Rabbi Richard L. Rubenstein interviewed Dean Heinrich Gruber of the Evangelical Church of East and West Berlin. Rubenstein notes that Gruber nearly himself perished in a Nazi concentration camp, and he “had a long and heroic record of opposition to the Nazis on Christian grounds as well as friendship and succor for Nazism’s chief victims [Jews].” [RUBENSTEIN, p. 5]
“The problem in Germany is that the Jews haven’t learned anything from what happened to them,” the Dean told a startled Rubenstein, “I always tell my Jewish friends that they shouldn’t put a hindrance in the way our fight against anti-Semitism.” [RUBENSTEIN, p. 7]
Gruber then complained that:
“many of the brothels and risqué night clubs, for example, were in Jewish hands, especially those in close proximity to army camps.” [RUBENSTEIN, p. 7]
And Rubenstein’s response to the clergyman? “Look,” the rabbi said,
“I don’t understand why you are so troubled about a pitifully small number of Jews in shady positions or interested in making money rather than following more edifying pursuits. It seems to me that every person pays a price for the kind of life he or she leads. Why should Germany be upset about a few such Jews unless they are overly involved in other peoples’ lives? Must every Jew make himself so pale, so inconspicuous, even invisible, that he will give no offense to Germans? … After what happened [the Holocaust], why should
any Jew remain and worry about German approval?” [RUBENSTEIN,
Marvin Wolf, a Jewish captain in the U.S. army serving in Germany, recalls that in 1971
“Rabbi David, the Jewish chaplain in Frankfort am Main — and the husband of my mother’s second cousin — told me that he knew several Jewish millionaires at whose homes I would be welcome — but, ‘I’m not crazy about any of them,’ he said. ‘What do you mean?’ I asked. ‘After the war, ’45, ’46, Germany was in ruins,’ he explained. ‘Terrible times. Nobody had money except the Occupation forces and a handful of Jews who had survived the camps and got a monthly pension — government reparations. In Frankfort, a few of these Jews recruited starving, desperate German girls and opened brothels. Got their revenge, and got rich, too. They’re in other businesses now, but do you really want to spend Pesach [Passover] with such people?” [WOLF, M. J., 1998]
By the turn of the century, “hundreds and hundreds” of Jewish women walked the Lower East Side of New York City as prostitutes. [FRIED, p. 8]
Benjamin Altman described the whores he saw on Allen Street:
“A hundred women on every … corner. Tall women, short women. Fair women. Ugly women.” [FRIED, p. 12]
Between November 15, 1908 and March 15, 1909, almost three-quarters of 2,093 prostitute cases before the New York City courts were “native-born” women, “a preponderance,” noted Albert Fried, “who were presumably Jewish.” (Ethnic categories included “Russian” and “Polish,” but not Jewish). [FRIED, p. 8] Of “foreign-born” prostitutes in court, 225 were Jewish, 154 French, 64 German, 31 Italian, 29 Irish, and 10 Polish. [FRIED, p. 8]
“The Jewish pimp,” says Albert Fried, “freely used marriage brokers and unemployment agencies to snare his victims — the young, the lonely, the innocent, the weak, the alienated, and the oppressed.” [FRIED, p. 14]
Starting out with one whore in 1890, for example, by 1912 Motche Greenberg had a “controlling interest in eight whorehouses and 114 women and was earning $4,000 a month, an incalculable amount by today’s standards.” [FRIED, p. 18]
In Chicago, by 1907 Rabbi Emil Hirsch declared that 75% of the “white slavery” in his city was controlled by Jews. [BRISTOW, p. 177]
The Jewish periodical the Forward forlornly reported that “the facts that were uncovered at the trial [for corruption] of [police] inspector McCann are horrifying. 75% of the white slave trade in Chicago is in Jewish hands. The owners of most of the immoral resorts on the West Side are Jews. Even in Gentile neighborhoods Jews stand out prominently in the nefarious business.” [FRIED, p. 70]
(Even in 2001, as a result of an undercover police investigation, Joel Gordon (a cantor, i.e., the man who sings liturgical songs and leads prayer in a synagogue) and his wife Alison Greenberg were tried in Chicago for running a brothel. Ginsberg was also charged with acts of prostitution. “We now realize,” said Howard Peritz, a member of Gordon’s synagogue, “that in starting a congregation around a man [Gordon], we were canonizing him.” [JEWISH TELEGRAPHIC AGENCY, 1-5-01] The same year, a synagogue room (Finchley Synagogue’s Kinloss Suite) in Great Britain made the news when it hosted a “stag party with three strippers performing ‘sexually explicit acts.'” Some of the money raised was supposed to go to a Jewish charity.) [ZERDIN, J., 29-01]
In 1987, a Jewish ultra-Orthodox group bought a slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa, and began hiring illegal non-Jewish aliens from Eastern Europe to do the menial jobs at their company. Despite the fact that only Jews dominated the upper eschelons of the firm, and Jewish author Stephen Bloom’s underscores Jewish exploitation and condemnation of the entire non-Jewish community in his book called Postville, he frames the following in cautiously distancing, apologetic form:
“[A woman in her mid-twenties said:] ‘The managers are incredibly rude. One manager fired me because I wouldn’t go to bed with him.’ The translator used the word ‘manager,’ but the woman was most likely speaking of one of her supervisors, who would have been a Christian. ‘If the manager wants to sleep with you and you do, you get a raise. If you don’t, he makes your life miserable. Girls have no choice.’ No one [of a group of fellow workers] disputed what the woman said.” [BLOOM, S., 2001, p. 138]
In 1932, a few Polish-American officials of the city of Hamtramck (within Detroit) were charged by a grand jury with the “familiar charge of collusion with vice interests for gratuities.” The central player among those convicted was Jewish, Jacob Kaplan, “head of a vice syndicate” who collected $2,000 a month from disorderly houses in the Syndicate.” [WOOD, 1955, p. 53-54]
In 1941, the Detroit Free Press listed the names of those involved in another exposed vice ring in the area of Hamtramck, a ring that drew city officials and administrators into its web with bribes and payoffs. The racketeers included “Sam (the Jap) Gross, Hamtramck area brothel operator;” Charles Berman, “charged with operating a vice resort;” Irene Kaplan, “defendant in accusations as brothel keeper;” Ike (Forty Grand) Levy, “vice resort operator;” Kitty (Big Nose) Silverman, “reputed vice resort keeper;” and Jack (alias Jack Jesus) Silverman, “husband of Kitty.” [WOOD, A., 1955, p. 84, 86]
Israeli scholar Robert Rockaway notes the dimensions of Detroit’s all-Jewish Prohibition-era Purple Gang:
“Detroit’s Canadian border and existence of Jewish-owned Canadian distilleries, such as those of Sam and Harry Bronfman [Jewish founders of Seagram], offered opportunities to Detroit’s Jewish gangsters that rivaled bootlegging operations in Chicago and New York. Instead of transporting the liquor themselves, the Purples arranged for the Jewish-dominated ‘Little Jewish Navy’ to bring it across the river for them … The Gang’s dealings also extended to the sale of stolen diamonds, narcotics and prostitution in Canada.” [ROCKAWAY, R., 2001, p. 113-]
Green Bay, Wisconsin? George Tane, also Jewish, “was a bootlegger who controlled Green Bay, Wisconsin. After Prohibition, he owned all the houses of prostitution in the city.” [ROCKAWAY, R., 1993, p. 214]
Atlanta, Georgia? In 2001, Steven Kaplan, owner of the nude “Gold Club,” faced a Federal indictment on counts of “loan sharking, money laundering and bribing police officers.” He was also accused “of building a $50 million fortune in part by providing prostitutes for celebrities … Atlanta’s Gold Club is one of the most profitable nude clubs in the country.” [COURT TV, 4-30-2001]
With the American public beginning to note the high Jewish representation in the prostitution trade; some journalists implied wider corruption. In the June 1909 issue of McClure’s magazine, for instance, George Kibbe Turner wrote:
“Out of the Bowery and Red Light districts have come the new
development in New York politics — the great voting power of the
organized criminals. It was a notable development not only for New
York, but for the country at large. And no part of it was more
noteworthy than the appearance of the Jewish dealer in women, a
product of New York politics, who has vitiated more than any other
single agency the moral life of the great cities of America in the past ten
years.” [BELL, p. 187]
“It is an absolute fact,” wrote Ernest Bell in his 1911 book about white slavery, “that corrupt Jews are now the backbone of the loathsome traffic in New York and Chicago. The good Jews know this and feel keenly the unspeakable shame of it.” [BELL, p. 188]
“The criminal instincts that are so often found naturally in the Russian and Polish Jew,” wrote Frank Moss in a popular volume called American Metropolis (1897), “come to the surface in such ways as to warrant the opinion that these people are the worst element in the entire make-up of New York City … A large proportion of the people of New Israel are addicted to vice.” [FRIED, p. 55-56]
“Vice and crime did pervade the Lower East Side,” remarks Albert Fried, “and no one knew it more keenly than its residents. The better part of wisdom, so far as they were concerned, was to keep the disgrace quiet, to avoid publicizing it.” [FRIED, p. 59]
Meanwhile, in the early 1900’s the National Council of Jewish Women even had Yiddish-speaking volunteers working to keep new female immigrants at Ellis Island “out of the clutches of men (often Jewish) who would try to entice them into prostitution.” [SCHNEIDER, p. 224]
By the early years of the twentieth century, large urban department stores had reputations “as breeding grounds for prostitution.” In New York City, for example, Macy’s fell under suspicion to some, in part for its proximity to a former red light district. In 1913, Percy Strauss, the Vice President of Macy’s, hosted a “vice vigilante” group to investigate his store. “Strauss,” notes William Leach, “no dour Puritan, had a personal interest in leading a campaign against vice. For one thing, as a German Jew and spokesman for the Jewish community, he had to disprove the charge — widely made — that immigrant Jewish women (and many of his own employees, therefore) were more likely than other women to be prostitutes.” [LEACH, p. 117]
By 1915 the Committee Against Vice (of which Strauss had conveniently become chairman) published a report that affirmed that Macy’s was “normal.” “On the other hand,” says William Leach, “testimony in the ‘secret reports’ told a different tale. Saleswomen, it was revealed, passed around pornographic cards and poems about themselves, talked openly about ‘sex’ and ‘sex desire,’ and ‘gossiped about fairies,’ as one investigator put it. Private accounts by other investigative reformers echoed this view, that things at Macy’s and in other department stores were hardly ‘normal’ or ‘decent.’ ‘The strongest temptation of girls in department stores,’ warned one reformer, ‘is not poverty but luxury and money.'” [LEACH, p. 118]
Although Jewish poverty was — and is — often argued as a major reason for their high international representation in such a vice, a 1914 League of Nations survey of 25 Jewish prostitutes in Buenos Aires showed that only 4 of them claimed to be poor before their new trade. Nine, however, stated that their family lives had been “immoral or abusive in some way.” [BRISTOW, p. 95]
(As Robert Rockaway notes about the dozens of members in Detroit’s all-Jewish criminal Purple Gang, which was involved in everything from murder to prostitution: “[Purple Gang members] were not products of crushing poverty, broken homes, or widespread economic despair. Most of them had been raised in lower middle class households where the father had a steady, if not well-paying, job.”) [ROCKAWAY, R., 2001, p. 113-]
And what, in complete dismissal of the facts of history, is the common Jewish perspective about the unabashed prominence of Jews in the “white slave trade?” This, in 1998, from Jewish scholar Gary Tobin in a popular Jewish newspaper:
“For those with a knowledge of history of 19th century anti-Semitic
propaganda, the idea that Jews are running “the white slave trade” is
nothing new. Cartoon like stereotypes of loathsome Jewish villains
trading on the lost virtue of non-Jewish maidens was standard material
for the Nazis and their precursors … It took a sick mind to imagine that
Jews were running the world’s oldest profession.” [TOBIN,
Distinguished, p. 51]
Tobin was responding to a very disturbing article in the New York Times (January 11, 1998) which described the horrible situation that Slavic Gentile prostitutes face today, trapped in Israel. As the Times notes, with the collapse of the Soviet Union and a resulting economic chaos, literally hundreds of thousands of Russian and Ukrainian women have been dispersed throughout the world, most entrapped in an international prostitution trade run by the “Russian mafia.” (Although it is certainly inferred, what the Times article does not overtly mention is that a significant part of the Russian mafia is Jewish. . Glenn Frankel, however, a Washington Post correspondent in Jerusalem, took the perspective in 1994 that:
“there was much talk about the Russian mafia muscling in [to Israel], although the police and most crime experts agreed that the brothels were almost entirely under the control of the Israeli mafia and that the Russians worked mostly as low-level managers or hookers.” [FRANKEL, p. 175]
“Israel has become a routine destination for the global trafficking of women,” noted Leonard Fein in a 1998 Jewish Bulletin,
“women coerced into prostitution. The thousand such women brought into Israel annually derive principally from the countries of the former Soviet Union, and the way they get to Israel is that they are ‘purchased,’ each one costing between $10,000 and $20,000.
And they are, of course, expected to repay the cost to their masters through what amounts to indentured servitude — or, if you prefer the simpler and more straightforward, slavery … Some [are] as young as 15, and even 12 … Each woman earns between $50,000 and $100,000 for her pimp. The turnover of the prostitution trade in Israel comes to some $450 million a year.” [FEIN, 1998, p. 21]
In a country of six million people, this averages about $75 a year paid to a pimp for every man, woman, and child in Israel. There are today 150 brothels and sex shops in Tel Aviv alone. [SILVER, E., 8-25-2000, p. 32]
In an interview with Marina, a Russian prostitute, the (Jewish) Forward noted in 1995 that there were nine or ten “Russian” prostitution rings in Israel. “Girls are regularly beaten to keep them obedient,” Marina told the Forward, “… [The Israeli police are] regularly paid off with free visits to our girls. A reporter like you thinks you’re picking up a stone from the road, but you might find you’re digging into a mountain.” [SHILLING, p. 5] As a report by Israel’s Women’s Network noted in 1997:
“Every year, hundreds of women from the former Soviet Union
are lured to Israel, gaining entry by posing as immigrants, on
the promise of finding lucrative jobs, and then are lured into
prostitution by abusive pimps.” [GROSS, N., 1997, p. 16]
In 1998, Hungary’s Consul in Tel Aviv, Andrea Horvath complained that four Hungarian women “had allegedly met their Israeli employer in a Budapest discotheque. They were hired as dancers but were later forced to provide sexual services as well.” [MTI, 3-20-98] In 2000, Robert Friedman, in talking about his book about the “Russian Mafia,” noted Seimon Mogilevich, head of a major Jewish mobster network, noting him as “one of the world’s biggest traffickers in women, Eurasian women.” [PENKLAVA, M., 5-3-2000]
“Women are sold into the sex business in Israel for between $5,000 and $15,000,” reported the Jerusalem Post in 1998, “while the pimps who buy them can earn between $10,000 and $50,000 a year per woman … 2,000 women are brought to Israel from the CIS and forced by pimps to work as prostitutes. Many are brought here on false pretenses and held against their will.” As Ira Omait, head of the Haifa Emergency Shelter for Women told the Post, “We are fast heading in the direction of trade in minors for prostitution and slavery.” [COLLINS, L., 12-15-98, p. 5]
Incredibly, as noted in a Jerusalem Post editorial in 1998, “According to the Women’s Lobby [a women’s group in Israel], part of the [prostitution] problem is that there is no law against slavery in Israel.” [JERUSALEM POST, 1-13-98, p. 10]
“Poor Women of Ex-Soviet Union Lured Into Sex Slavery” headlined a 1998 Associated Press story. Women forced into prostitution in Israel, noted the article, were locked in rooms and provided only food and condoms. And Israeli law on the subject? In 1996 150 men were arrested for pimping or running brothels. Merely 21 cases went to trial, and no one was ever convicted of a crime. [LINZER, D., 6-13-98]
In 1998 an Israeli judge even ordered an insurance company to pay for a client’s prostitution addiction:
“An Israeli insurance company has been ordered to pay 300,000
shekels ($80,000) to fund the prostitution habit of a man injured
in a car accident.” [DEUTSCHE PRESSE-AGENTUR, 4-22-98]
The man claimed that since a 1993 car crash he couldn’t form relationships with women and relied on the prostitution world.
The 1998 New York Times article noted that more than 1,500 Slavic prostitutes — mostly from the Ukraine — have been deported from Israel for residence infractions in the past three years. (Israeli oppression knows no end: “Unlike many countries, Israel does not pay airfare for deportees.” [LINZER, D., 6-13-98]) Prostitution is not illegal in Israel and clients include foreign workers, “Israeli soldiers with rifles on their shoulders,” business executives, and tourists.
The Times noted that:
“The networks trafficking women run east to Japan and Thailand, where
thousands of young Slavic women now work against their will as
prostitutes, and west to the Adriatic Coast and beyond … The routes
are controlled by Russian gangs based in Moscow … In Ukraine alone …
as many as 400,000 women under 30 have gone in the past decade …
Israel is a fairly typical destination … Police officials [in Israel] estimate
that there are 25,000 paid sexual transactions every day. [This in a
country with a population of 6 million]. Brothels are ubiquitous … Once
they cross the border [into Israel] their passports will be confiscated
[by pimps], their freedoms curtailed and what little money they have
taken from them at once … The Tropicana, in Tel Aviv’s bustling
business district, is one of the busiest bordellos. The women who work
there, like nearly all prostitutes in Israel today, are Russian. Their bosses,
however, are not. ‘Israelis love Russian girls,’ said Jacob Golan, who
owns this and two other clubs, ‘…. They are blonde and good looking
and different than us … And they are desperate. They are ready to do
anything for money.” [SPECTER, p. 1]
“The situation,” wrote Jewish author David Weinberg in an 1998 article about prostitution in Israel entitled Not So Holy Land, “is enough to make you cry in despair, or vomit from shame.” [WEINBERG, D., 1-18-98, p. 8]
THE RUSSIAN JEWISH MAFIA
Is America being blackmailed into new Middle East wars on behalf of Israel?
The Russian mafia, known also as the Red Mafiya or the “Red Octopus”, is really the Jewish mafia in disguise.
It has secret links to Mossad, the Rothschild family, the Federal Reserve Bank, and to powerful Jewish organizations such as AIPAC and the ADL.
The activities of the Russian mafia range from the back streets of Moscow to the sex dens of Budapest and Tel Aviv, from the diamond mines of Sierra Leone to the jewelry workshops of Antwerp, from the plush casinos of Vegas and Atlantic City to the multimillion dollar gated mansions of Fisher Island, Miami, from the coke and heroin dives of Odessa and the Black Sea ports to the child porn parlors and underground brothels of Oregon. In the United States, the Russian mafia’s ground zero is Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, right slap-bang in the center of America’s most Jewish community.
“As of 2009,” Wikipedia reports, “Russian mafia groups have been said to reach over 50 countries and, as of 2010, have up to 300,000 members.”
Laura Radanko, herself Jewish, carried out some important research on the Russian mafia and lifted the lid on some of their most grisly secrets. She writes:
During the detente days of the early 1970s, when Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev had agreed to allow the limited emigration of Soviet Jews, thousands of hard-core criminals, many of them released from Soviet Gulags by the KGB, took advantage of their nominal Jewish status to swarm into the United States….
In the 1970s, more than forty thousand Russian Jews settled in Brighton Beach. It was under the shadow of the elevated subway tracks on Brighton Beach Avenue, bustling with Russian meat markets, vegetable pushcarts, and bakeries, that the Russian gangsters resumed their careers as professional killers, thieves, and scoundrels….
— Laura Radanko, “The Superpower of Crime.
Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, also known as “Little Odessa” or “Little Russia by the Sea”, has now become the American headquarters of the Red Mafiya, ranked as the world’s most powerful criminal gang.
Though the “Russian” gangs of the former Soviet Union include Georgians, Armenians, Chechens and various other ethnic groups, the kingpins of the Russian mafia are all Jewish—in the same way as the leaders of the Bolshevik Revolution were Jewish, though their underlings were not. All the big guns of the Russian mafia—Semion Mogilevich, Monya Elson, Marat Balagula, Vyacheslav Ivankov, Vladimir Ginsberg, Ludwig Fainberg—are Jewish.
In Russia’s post-perestroika years (1990s), thousands of Russian thugs slipped into America with the greatest of ease. “The understaffed and ill-equipped Immigration Service,” Robert Friedman reveals, “seemed helpless to stop them.”
Hundreds of former Soviets athletes and Special Forces veterans of the Afghanistan wars, including many retired KGB agents, swarmed into America. (There are now between 500,000 to 750,000 Russian Jews here). Many Russian criminals ended up at Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, where they were to join the combat brigades of the Red Mafiya. They were at once put on retainers of $20,000 a month. No jobs as janitors or road sweepers for them! Like ducks to water, they took to sex trafficking, prostitution, pornography, drug running, loan sharking, stock market scams, arson, burglary, bank and jewelry frauds, counterfeiting, vote rigging, arms sales, extortion and murder.
The first four rules of the Jewish Russian mafia are these: never have emotions, reject your parents and closest relatives, screw as many women as possible, never work in a legitimate job.
The merciless cruelty of these psychopathic killers is so extreme that it is often said “they will shoot people just to see if their guns work.”
The investigative reporter Robert I. Friedman (1951-2002) revealed in his book Red Mafiya: How the Russian Mob Has Invaded America that the “Russian” mafia was in fact more Jewish than Russian.
Dr M. Raphael Johnson is even more specific in his details about the Jewishness of the Russian mafia. Having established themselves in Tel Aviv after the mass emigration of Russian Jews to Israel in the 1990s, the Russian mafia began to call itself the Israeli or Jewish mafia:
The roots of Jewish organized crime go far back into tsarist times. Organized crime syndicates assisted Lenin’s gangs in bank robberies and the creation of general mayhem. During the so-called revolution, it was difficult, sometimes impossible, to distinguish between Bolshevik ideologues and Jewish organized crime syndicates. They acted in nearly an identical manner….
The state of Israel is a major factor in the rise and power of the Jewish mafia. Jewish drug dealers, child porn pushers and slave traders are free from prosecution in Israel. Israel does not consider these to be crimes, so long as the victims are non-Jews. The Israeli state will not extradite its citizens to non-Jewish countries, and, therefore, Jewish murderers can quite easily escape punishment in Israel.
— Dr M. Raphael Johnson, The Judeo-Russian Mafia: From the Gulag to Brooklyn to World Dominion
Described by the CIA as a “grave threat” to global security and by Robert I. Friedman as the “world’s most dangerous man”, step forward Semion Mogilevich, arch-criminal extraordinaire and head honcho of the Red Mafiya— first in line of the rottweiler pack of Russian criminals unleashed on the world by the dissolution of the Soviet Union. With his headquarters in Budapest, the 67-year-old Mogilevich is behind most of the white slave trafficking of Russian and Eastern European girls to Israel.
The power of this Russian Jew is well-nigh legendary. He is the ideal villain for a James Bond movie. Not only does he own the armaments industry in Hungary, but he is said to control the entire vodka trade in Russia and Central Europe. He possesses his own army, artillery, mechanized infantry, anti-aircraft guns and missiles of all types. Furthermore, he is reported to have his own nuclear weapons, relics left over from the former Warsaw Pact countries. NATO has said he is a “threat to the stability of Europe,” though his name remains little known to the general public in view of the fact that his co-ethnics control the media.
With extensive holdings in Israel, Semion Mogilevich, “single-handedly controls the brothels in Israel, where Ukrainian and Russian girls are forced into sexual slavery.”
Every year, “hundreds of women from Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union are smuggled into Israel. The traffic is linked to the Russian mafia taking root in Israel as a byproduct of mass immigration from the former Soviet Union.” (Sex Trade Flourishing in Holy Land, CBS, February 24, 2003).
With activities in countries ranging from Malaysia to Great Britain, Russian mobsters now operate in more than fifty nations. They smuggle heroin from Southeast Asia with the help and cooperation of the CIA. They traffic in weapons. And they have a special knack for large-scale extortion.
When the Judeo-Russian mafia and the Rothschild-controlled banksters, who are ultimately behind this vast criminal organization, want the American government to do something which the government is hesitant to do—for example, to bomb Iran—it will give the government a sign of its displeasure by staging a terrorist event.
Such as the Boston Marathon massacre.
The government will then get the message: Unless we bomb Iran, these Bolshevik Jews will continue to terrorize America. As they once terrorized Tsarist Russia. They will make us look impotent fools, because obviously we can’t control them. So we’d better do as they say—we’d better bomb Iran.
In the case of the Boston Marathon bombing, you will point out correctly, it was the Chechen mafia that was involved. Indirectly. Not the Judeo-Russian mafia. Save your breath. It’s well-known that the Chechen mafia is simply one of the many tributaries of the Judeo-Russian mafia. We know for a fact that Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky gave his financial backing to the Chechen mafia in return for favors. He was the Big Jew behind the Chechen mafia, secretly pulling its strings and dictating its policies.
Berezovsky’s secret links to the Chechen mafia were first revealed by a Russian-American investigative reporter for Forbes magazine, Paul Klebnikov, in his chilling exposé Godfather of the Kremlin: Boris Berezovsky and the looting of Russia (2000). “No man profited more from Russia’s slide into the abyss,” Klebnikov noted. As a result of his explosive revelations, a contract was taken out on Klebnikov’s life. In 2004, the courageous reporter was gunned down in the streets of Moscow. (See here)
In a recent edition of Forbes magazine (24 March, 2013), we read this:
“Paul [Klebnikov] was gathering string for future articles that linked Nukhayev and other Chechen warlords with Berezovsky….Here’s where it gets even more interesting. Last summer, Berezovsky’s Chechen links came to the surface in a $6.5 billion London lawsuit that he had brought (and lost) against Roman Abramovich, a rival Russian oligarch….
Klebnikov was the first American reporter to be murdered in Russia, and with his silencing the world lost one of its foremost experts on the vast and murky crossroads of Russian organized crime, Kremlin politics, Chechen terrorists, billionaire oligarchs, and the spread of Russian mafia conglomerates around the world.” (See here)
It is through the Chechen mafia that international Jewry continues its secret war against Putin’s Russia.
Boris Berezovsky, Jewish Russian oligarch (1946-2013), died in mysterious circumstances on 23 March this year at his home in Ascot, England, age 67. According to the official version of events, he was suffering from depression, so he locked himself in his bathroom and hanged himself. One of his oldest friends, Nikolai Glushkov, said: “Boris was strangled.” Berezovsky’s close links with the Chechen mafia clearly indicate that Big Jewry probably had a hand in the Boston Marathon bombing. See Chechnya and the Boston bombing: link, if established, would be unprecedented.
Right now, the Chechen mafia has Moscow within its iron tentacles. But the Chechen mafia is itself controlled, as we now know, by the Jewish mafia—and by organized Jewry which helps it to money launder its vast illegal profits through the Jewish-controlled central banks of the world. This is not rocket science. The Jews control everyone by controlling the world’s money supply. Wasn’t it a Rothschild who said that? Sure, it was a Rothschild who said that. “Give me control of a nation’s money,” Mayer Amschel Rothschild famously said, “and I care not who makes its laws.”
So the Jews help to money launder the loot of the Chechen mafia: and in this way they control the Chechen mafia, just like they control the American government.
The Judeo-Russian mafia and the Chechen mafia are not competitors in America. They are cronies. They have carved out their separate kingdoms. Like friendly lions, they share the spoils, eating from different sides of the same carcase. The carcase is America.
How much does a contract murder cost? How much would it cost Mossad to outsource the Boston Marathon bombing to the Chechen mafia, assuming it decided to carry out such a terrorist act in the interests of Israel? Is $10 million too little? How about $100 million? That’s peanuts. Israel gets $8.2 million a day from the American taxpayer. It could buy a Chechen mafia massacre by sacrificing its pocket money for two days—or two weeks at the most—depending on the price.
Google the word “Israelification”. You’ll get “Israelification of American airports”. “Israelification of American domestic security”. “Israelification of US police”. “Israelification of America”.
Makes you think, doesn’t it?
Do American cops really need to hop on a plane to Tel Aviv to learn how to taser their fellow citizens?
How come all the airports that failed so suspiciously to stop alleged Al Qaeda terrorists from carrying out the 9/11 attack—how come all these airports were policed by ONE private security company, ICTS, owned by Israeli Jew Ezra Harel? “One company had automatic inside access to all of the airports from which hijacked planes departed on 9-11,” one reads with eyepopping incredulity. “An Israeli company. One that Mossad agents could easily find employment with.”
It looks like the Jewish mafia in America is not only running a protection racket called “Israeli Security”, it’s running a protection racket that doesn’t even work.
It is naïve to assume that all these terrorist attacks upon America are being carried out by amateurish Muslim organizations armed with little more than box cutters and pressure cooker bombs filled with nails and shrapnel. It is equally naïve to believe that the government is itself invariably complicit in these attacks and is orchestrating them for no other reason than that it needs an excuse to confiscate guns and usher in a spooky Orwellian police state.
No, it is far more plausible to regard these attacks upon America as Jewish mafia strong-arm tactics to coerce America into doing the will of Israel and in fighting its wars for it. If the administration refuses to do the dirty work of bombing Iran for Israel, then it will have to be taught a lesson. If American politicians cannot be persuaded by all the carrots provided by AIPAC, then maybe it is time to give them a taste of Mossad’s big stick.
The carrot and the stick. That’s how it works. This is how Jewish influence is exerted. AIPAC offers the carrots, Mossad wields the big stick.
The Judeo-Russian mafia or Red Mafiya—call it the “Jewish mafia” if you prefer— is now Mossad’s secret army in America. This is not a conspiracy theory, it’s an intellectually defensible thesis for which there is now more than enough evidence. He that has eyes to see, let him see.
This is what I read today in an authoritative source, and it chills my blood when I read it:
US intelligence officials worry that Russian gangsters will acquire weapons of mass destruction such as fissionable material or deadly, easily concealed pathogens such as the smallpox virus—all too readily available from poorly guarded military bases or scientific labs—and sell these deadly wares to any number of terrorist groups or renegade states.
In North America alone, there are now thirty Russian crime syndicates operating in at least seventeen US cities, most notably New York, Miami, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Denver.
Mafiya groups that have flourished in post-perestroika Russia, they have something La Cosa Nostra can only dream about: their own country. The Russian mob virtually controls their nuclear-tipped former superpower, which provides them with vast financial assets and a truly global reach. Russian President Boris Yeltsin wasn’t exaggerating when he described Russia as “the biggest Mafia state in the world”.
In 1993, a high-ranking Russian immigration official in Moscow told US investigators that there were five million dangerous criminals in the former USSR who would be allowed to emigrate to the West.
Laura Radanko, The Russian Mafia in America
Guess what? They’re here! Right now.
Five million dangerous Russian criminals, former inhabitants of the gulags. Mossad’s American army. Five million Bolshevik terrorists, come to batten on America like bloodsucking vampires.
These guys aren’t listed in official statistics. Many of them are Israelis, part of the Israeli mafia, free to fly in and out of America without visas. Like they did around 9/11, casing the joint, clicking their cameras, doing high fives, and dancing as the Twin Towers came toppling down.
Never forget the Bolshevik Revolution. Sixty-six million dead Russian Christians put to death by cheka Jews. The descendants of these Bolshevik revolutionaries are now here! Like a pack of ravenous wolves moving in for the kill…
Adolf Hitler once described America as the Jews’ “new hunting grounds”. With remarkable prescience, he saw that the state of Israel would one day develop into organized Jewry’s international crime base from which it would plunder other countries, including America, with impunity:
It doesn’t even enter their heads to build up a Jewish state in Palestine for the purpose of living there; all they want is a central organization for their international world swindle, endowed with its own sovereign rights and removed from the intervention of other states: a haven for convicted scoundrels and a university for budding crooks.” — Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, Chapter 11
Never forget what Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Jonathan Pollard on exiting the spy’s prison cell after a friendly visit in 2002: “Once we squeeze all we can out of the United States it can dry up and blow away.”
America lies bleeding.
The carrion are feeding on its corpse right now.
THE TROPICANA BROTHEL
Following the closure of Tropicana, a bordello, its owner relates the tale of the rise and fall of an establishment that, in the past decade, came to symbolize the flourishing sex industry in Israel:
the exploitation of the prostitutes, the ties with the mafia, the relations with the police, the caprices of the clients, the loss of the Arab clientele. Tropicana as a mirror of Israeli society
Oct. 31, 2001
Tropicana, a bordello, operated throughout the 1990s in the diamond exchange district of Ramat Gan. Last month it shut down. The coalition that kept the coffers of the establishment full – affluent Israelis, Palestinians from the territories, and foreign workers – was no longer able to afford the cost, whether for financial or security reasons. The women who were compelled to work at Tropicana moved on to shabby places in south Tel Aviv. It’s the same work but for less money. Hundreds of women work as prostitutes in Metropolitan Tel Aviv. A few dozen of them do so under duress, having been brought to Israel under false pretences. A law that was passed last year by the Knesset and which prohibits white slavery has not succeeded in reducing the scale of the phenomenon.
Yaakov (“Jackie”) Yazdi, one of the owners of Tropicana, says that the disappearance of shame is the only thing that changed over the years in which the bordello operated. When Tropicana first opened, clients virtually snuck into the place. Over time, the embarrassment vanished and the people who arrived at Tropicana behaved as though they were dropping in at their bank branch or local post office to do some business.
Yazdi himself was never ashamed of the place. He was happy to give interviews and never hid his pride at what he did for a living. The soft-spoken man was born in Tehran 51 years ago. In his view, managing a bordello is a legitimate profession and nothing short of an avocation.
All kinds of urban legends sprang up about Yazdi during the period when Tropicana flourished. For years he was a target of the police and the income tax authorities, and was even arrested. But persistent rumors had it that he was cooperating with the authorities in return for their turning a blind eye on his business.
Yazdi has three children by his first wife and one child from his second wife, Svetlana, a new immigrant from Belarus. His eldest son, Golan, 27, says he hopes to follow in his father’s footsteps.
Yazdi chose to be interviewed in his office, which is adjacent to Tropicana. In the foyer are a pool table, a bar and plush sofas. Yazdi sat in a side room, wearing a black Hugo Boss T-shirt, at a desk on which was a container for charitable donations and opposite, a television broadcasting closed-circuit pictures of the street outside. With him were his lawyer, Yisrael Klein, and his son, Golan.
What Yazdi had to say flies in the face of all social norms and, in some cases, is tainted with racism and male chauvinism. His words are quoted here not only because of their anthropological value, but because they are more than mere words. Yazdi’s world, in which humiliation is redemption and exploitation is salvation, is the world in which the women who worked for him or for his business associates were forced to work.
`Not a final closure’
“We closed down because of the economic situation. A fairly large percentage of the clients, about a third, were Arabs. Of them, two-thirds were Israeli Arabs and a third were Arabs from the territories. In the past year, they stopped showing up altogether. Because of the fear. The police make a lot of visits to this area, there are roadblocks all the time, and the Arabs were harassed because of the situation; their cars were searched. Yesterday, I was walking around outside and there were five police vans in the area. Every driver had his papers checked.
“But the Arabs weren’t the only ones who stopped visiting. Because of the situation, about a third of the Jewish clients also don’t come anymore. They don’t have the money for Tropicana, so they look for other alternatives, other places that are cheaper. Do you know what’s going on out there? The number of guys using street prostitutes has gone up 500%. Today, if you wander around the stock exchange district, you can find 50 girls. There are four, five, six on every corner.
“I know from the street that a lot of people moved to apartments in south Tel Aviv. Apartments [of] girls who take NIS 50. Here it cost NIS 160, NIS 170, NIS 180, and the girl would get NIS 100 of that. The places in south Tel Aviv are less luxurious. They are not as clean, the girls aren’t as pretty, the towels aren’t always clean, there’s no hot water. Here, when you came in, you would see eight to 10 girls; you would take a seat, have some coffee, look over the girls and choose. There was a lobby, there was a cafeteria. In south Tel Aviv, you go in and a girl opens the door – take it or leave it, that’s what there is.
“One of the reasons, and I mean this sincerely, that I left the place open until now was that I didn’t want to hurt the livelihood of dozens of souls. When the situation changes, we’ll open again. This isn’t a final closure. A lot of people ask me when we’re going to open again. Sometimes I don’t feel right about answering, so I say we’re renovating.
“Everyone thinks that Tropicana made millions, but the amounts that were bandied about in the press are fantasies. There was more noise than money in Tropicana. We were five partners. Our net profit was around $10,000 to $15,000 a month. When you divvy that up among five people, it comes out to about the salary of a high-school teacher. In every healthy business, say a store or a restaurant, the expenses are between 20 and 30%. At Tropicana, because of undeclared expenses, such as protection and bribery, which we didn’t report, the expenses were higher. We reached a situation in which 80% of our revenues went for expenses.
“What do I mean by protection? Look, any place that isn’t legal always pays to the mafia. Whether it’s the Russians, the Arabs or the Israelis. What do you think, that there’s a shortage of mafias here? There was one week when we tried not to pay, so they threw a grenade at us. The grenade happened to have been thrown by the Arabs, but the Russians shot at us a few times. The amounts they demanded changed from one period to the next. The people who got protection money from us and my partners – who don’t want their names to be made known, so I can’t tell you who they are – have been threatening me all the time since we closed Tropicana.
“They want me to open up again. They’re threatening to burn my house, to burn the office. I had one threat that they would chop off Golan’s head. That’s why we have closed-circuit television. Sitting here, I can see the passageways, the building behind, from above and below. That’s how it is.”
`Every perversion and its price’
“The girls who worked here were mostly new immigrants from the former Soviet Union. They didn’t acclimatize well in Israel, they couldn’t find work. Half of them were married, some of them had children, and half were single. In the good days of Tropicana, say two or three years ago, they would make NIS 400-NIS 500 a day, based on five clients.
“I had a lot of conversations with the girls. It’s `transparent’ that every girl comes to this work because of the economic situation. No one comes to work here as a luxury, except for nymphomaniacs, which is rare. One of the reasons that I personally don’t see this work as something bad is that, according to my opinion, all I am doing is helping girls in distress who want to do this work.
“I saw it as helping them. I met a lot of girls whose families came to Israel thinking they would be able to live like human beings here, but who reached a condition in which they were living at the same level as in Russia. I saw that, in general, every family finds the girl who is suited for this work and sends them to do it, and she supports her brothers and sisters and grandparents and uncles and aunts. If there is a family that doesn’t have a girl, one of the boys becomes a thief, or becomes involved in protection, or a burglar, or a drug dealer. They can’t be here without money to buy food.
“I didn’t initiate a call to girls, except when we opened and I ran an ad saying `Girls needed for institute.’ Other than that, they always came to me. We didn’t have to run another ad in the paper or anything. They would come here, because this was supposed to be the only place where the girls could work quietly, without being told how to work, without being told what to do.
“Each girl who worked in Tropicana decided which client she would receive – if he seemed to be drunk, or on drugs, or didn’t want to shower, or had sores on his body, she didn’t have to take him. There are some girls for whom a large sexual organ isn’t suitable, such as those who are new to the work. There were some girls who wouldn’t take disabled people, people with amputated legs or arms. Those who wouldn’t take someone would leave the room and the client remained with a girl who didn’t mind. None of them would take clients who they thought might have a disease of some kind, or clients who refused to use condoms. The girls themselves took care of that. Each of them liked a different `trademark’: with oil or without oil, with a scent or without, banana-flavored, strawberry-flavored.
“We never told a girl she wasn’t suitable. We didn’t want to insult anyone. There were older women, some who weren’t pretty, fat ones – they came here and sat, and when it didn’t work out, they got up and left. The ones who were successful were the girls who gave good service, which means the right attitude toward the clients. Girls who could speak a little Hebrew, who were a bit sympathetic to the clients.
“What attracts Israeli men externally is usually a young girl with a large chest. That’s the demand of the Israeli male: young, blonde, big chest. But the Arab clients like full-bodied girls. They like to feel meat, to feel they are holding onto something. The older guys also liked girls who were a little full-bodied.
“The clients were men. All of them. We had married men who wanted some variety. Soldiers without a girlfriend. Young guys who didn’t have a steady girl. Some just wanted to come and go; those who didn’t have a steady partner. The married ones wanted perversions they couldn’t do with the wife. All the things they were ashamed to ask for. Especially blow-jobs. Israeli women don’t like giving blow-jobs, that’s well-known. The truth is that Israeli women don’t like to pamper men. I’m talking about the married women. They’re tired after cooking, taking care of the children, cleaning the house. They’re not even up to giving the man a massage.
“Here the men could get sado, bizarre, anal, orgies, all kinds of things like that. But that would cost more than NIS 190. Every perversion had its price, according to the girl’s demand. That added between NIS 100 and NIS 300.
“I do not only accept this business wholeheartedly, I accept it too much. If it were important only for a few sexual perverts, I would be ashamed. But there are a million clients a month in Israel. I look at this business as though it were a restaurant. When a person is hungry, he goes to a restaurant. When a person feels that he needs release, he goes to a parlor. I don’t find anything immoral about it.
“If there is anyone who can tell me that a man can restrain himself and not be with a woman until he gets married, if there is anyone who can prove that, who can suggest a different alternative – let’s say, doing hand jobs until the wedding – then it’s possible that my opinion is wrong. But as long as there are a million clients a month who want escorts, where is the moral problem here?
“Look what’s going on out there. There was a garage here that was turned into a parking lot. Yesterday, I went by there, I saw 15 cars, all of them with girls. The clients who came here, it was also a social outing for them. A lot of people would spend the evening here in the cafeteria. Is there something sad about that? I don’t think you know what’s happening. I don’t believe that if a guy feels lonely he comes to a place like this. If he feels lonely, he goes to a bar to look for a girl. Men come here to get release. It’s exactly the same as a hungry guy who wants a sandwich. I don’t understand why it’s hard for people to understand that.
“Is what I am saying getting through to you? I am saying that God gave men a stomach, his stomach becomes empty, so he feels the need to eat, otherwise he can’t concentrate at work, he gets an ulcer. It’s the same thing with sexual relations. Every few days, you have to release it.
“A man can’t go on without a woman. If he has no woman, or he quarrels with his wife, or she is pregnant, or she is having her period and he is religious – he can’t take it. There is no man who doesn’t go anywhere. There just isn’t, I don’t believe it. There is no man who can go for more than a week without having sexual relations, unless there is something wrong with him. A normal man needs a woman once a week. The ones who are ashamed to come here go to a peep show or to observation rooms and do it by hand.”
A man’s world
“Men always have more understanding and more sense and more intelligence than women. Let’s make it simple. If we take the theory that men and women have the same intelligence and that women can do whatever men can do – then why are all the key positions and the most sensitive things not run by women? Because there are fewer women? No. Because women aren’t so smart. I’m not a chauvinist, but it’s hard to find a woman who can reach a man’s level when it comes to intelligence. They have certain limitations. In general, a woman always has an intelligence limitation. They can understand things up to a certain level and beyond that, they can’t understand a thing.
“I am very liberal in my views when it comes to men and women. But it’s clear that as one who comes from Persia, I can’t be too different. The education you got at home, the way you grew up, always has its influence. As much as I want to be liberal and be different, it’s possible only up to a certain point. At home, I want to be in control. By control, I mean I will have the last word. You know what they say: When women can piss standing up like men, they will be able to make the same demands as men.
“I have no problem, as a married man, flirting with women. Svetlana has no problem with the fact that there were a few girls here that I had sexual relations with. Here is my personal opinion on the subject: As long as a man doesn’t have an extra-marital affair, and he goes only for release, I don’t call it cheating. It’s a little diversity. In my opinion, women should be happy that men go to a place like this once a week and don’t have an affair with some girl. Here he pays NIS 200 and that’s it. Smart women will understand me for sure.
“If there was a girl at Tropicana that I was attracted to, and she was attracted to me, too, we had a good time together. The truth is that I tried to do it as little as possible with the workers, because that’s not so healthy for the professional life. During the nine years that Tropicana was open, it only happened with a few girls. The ones I was attracted to were those with a head on their shoulders, because most of the Russian girls aren’t so smart. But some of them were doctors. There was one who was a chief surgeon in a hospital in Russia, there was one who was a lawyer, there was an engineer, very intelligent types.
“If I couldn’t satisfy Svetlana, I would also agree to a reverse arrangement. But women can be satisfied with a vibrator. Svetlana is a new immigrant from Belarus. I met her eight years ago in a Russian restaurant. It was at the birthday party for one of the girls, and she invited me. I saw Svetlana, I danced with her, I fell in love with her. She is twenty-something years younger than me, but for Russian women, age isn’t what counts. On the contrary, they have a tendency to go out with older men. Because Svetlana’s father died, maybe she also found a father image in me.
“I fell in love with her because she was so shy. When you work at a job like this, you are attracted to shy girls. She sat quietly and didn’t stand out, and because I am dealing all the time with girls in this profession, I am attracting to the shy, quiet ones. What Svetlana finds in me is that I am very respectful to women. I am a true gentleman. It’s the same with the working girls: I always speak nicely, respect them. There were a lot of times when I quarrelled with people who called them whores. I never insulted them because of the fact that they worked here and I never gave them the feeling that they were that kind of girl. I spoke to them the way you would speak with co-eds in university.”
`No moral problem’
“You ask what would happen if one of my daughters would tell me one day that she wants to work as a prostitute. If she were in financial distress and didn’t have what to eat, I would accept it. If there were no other way to solve the problem, then there is nothing to be done. The moral problem only exists because of prejudice. We treat prostitution differently from the way they do in the Commonwealth of Independent States. There, to be a prostitute is like any other job. There, the parents know where the girls work, and they’re not angry with them in the least. From my point of view, there is no moral problem about prostitution.
“But if a girl chooses this work not because of economic reasons – then I don’t accept it. It is work that isn’t pleasant. The woman has to be with people that she doesn’t like so much. It’s something like a nurse in a hospital who has to wipe the patients’ behinds. But a little less disgusting. There is no moral problem here. But it’s not pleasant for a girl to sleep with a man whom she doesn’t really like physically. It’s not a moral thing, it’s just not pleasant to be bed with someone she doesn’t like.
“In my conversations with girls, they told me they don’t look at the guy to see what he looks like, what he has, what he doesn’t have, only at the NIS 100. The reason I wouldn’t want my daughter to get into that is because it wouldn’t be pleasant for me if my daughter slept with someone she doesn’t want to sleep with, if she doesn’t have financial problems. Because, why do all the girls do it? They do it to give their children food, or to give them education, or buy them clothes.
“We have a video of a girl who worked here, that Golan and I filmed in Moldova. The girl sent all the money she made to Moldova, it was stolen, and then she was deported from Israel and she went back to Moldova with nothing. We filmed her living with her daughter, a beautiful girl and very smart, nine years old. Golan was in shock for a week. They live in a small room, they don’t even have a glass for drinking water from the tap, they don’t have a bed to sleep in, the girl has nothing to wear to school, she has no food, she asks the other children for a bit of their sandwiches.
“People don’t know what’s going on. That woman came here from Moldova to work, to send money so her girl would have clothes to wear. People who don’t know the situation first-hand can say whatever they like. The reality is that we traveled around and we saw how people live in Moldova. If there is someone who gets up in the morning and has no idea how to provide for his children, and he goes to trash cans to find food for them, and he has a girl of 18, what is easier than sending her to work to bring money home?
“That’s what we saw in Moldova. We were shocked. If they don’t send a girl from Moldova to Israel or Turkey or Greece in order to do that work – it means dying. People there are actually dying.”
“I am not religious, I am a secular person. But I believe in God. I believe in religion, I respect religion, I respect religious people. I myself built a synagogue. Where? In Bnei Brak. They had no problem with the fact that I was the one donating the money. Where exactly in Bnei Brak? The synagogue is now being built. It isn’t finished yet. When it’s ready, I’ll invite you to the opening.
“I am in touch with a lot of people; they know exactly what I do. My only ties with them are through the help I give them – either by buying a Torah scroll, or building a synagogue, or paying the expenses of a synagogue. What does it say – it’s written that you have to pay 10% to charity? Well, I give even more than 10%. A large part of the little that I make goes to charity.
“I came to Israel at the age of 16. I am from a very rich family, automobile dealers. I learned Hebrew fast. In the army I was a monitor in a secret unit. I listened in Arabic and Farsi. I like it, it was very interesting work. You hear about all kinds of raids, sabotage, operations of the enemy. You always know what’s going on before anyone else. You hear what the prime minister can hear only a quarter of an hour later. For example, if I had been on duty, I would have heard the pilots who smashed into the Twin Towers before Bush heard about it. In listening, you are the first one who hears.
“After my discharge I worked as a security officer at Ben-Gurion Airport. After that I moved to a company that sold advertising products – calendars, pens, things like that. In 1991, it was a bad time for business. Clients’ checks bounced, to the tune of NIS 300,000. I had a big overdraft in the bank. Unfortunately, there is a problem here in the country: When a check bounces, there is nothing to be done, no one does anything to people who sign checks and then can’t honor them.
“I looked around for something that would bring cash money, and fast, without any more checks and all kinds of tricks and sting operations. I didn’t take money from my parents – I always tried not to ask them for money. That was a principle with me. I always had the character of a guy who doesn’t ask anyone for favors. Even though my family said they wanted to help out, to replace my car, to replace my apartment, I always insisted on not asking for anything. Even when I went to visit them, I would stay in a hotel, not with them.
“Then a friend told me about this sphere. I took a loan from the bank and I gave a friend money to open Tropicana. Then the friend had to leave the country and I had no choice but to carry on with the business. I had to put the problem of the overdraft behind me very fast.
“The thing that made it possible for Tropicana to flourish in the past few years was the wave of immigration from Russia. Without that immigration, the business wouldn’t have existed. There aren’t enough girls in the country to do the work. Before the immigration from the CIS began, it was better to work at washing cars than in prostitution. Who in the world could have worked in this field? The peak years of Tropicana were around 1995 and 1996. We had between 70 and 80 clients a day then. It was important to me for us to be the most successful place. My character is that it’s important for me to be the most successful, and it was that way in other things I did, too.
“We became a symbol because we were the best. I am an advertising person and I knew how to advertise the place. Advertising means treating the clients well, order, discipline, public relations. We gave the clients the feeling that they were in an organized place. Besides that, at the time we opened there weren’t many handsome, luxury places.
“That’s also why I kept two monkeys here. I wanted them for the beauty of it, so the place would be more interesting. That was one of the advertising stunts. At first, there was one monkey, which a Russian circus left us as a gift. The monkey got bored, so we brought him a female monkey.
“I don’t have to work now. My mother and father died not long ago and I received an inheritance. In Persia, we have houses, property, warehouses of cars; I can get millions of dollars from there. I don’t bring it to Israel but to the United States, through my brothers.
“Right now I am taking care of myself. My health hasn’t been so good lately. They found all kinds of bad things in me. Not long ago I had a catheterization, now they found something in my blood, it might be cancer. All kinds of other troubles, too, a possible ulcer, kidney stones. I am doing a series of tests, taking care of myself a little.
“Why did I agree to be interviewed? First of all, because you asked, and I am a guy who all his life has tried not to say no to people when they ask for help. If you had told me your car had broken down somewhere, I would have come to help you. I am the type of guy who likes to help. But there is another reason, too. I know that the things I said will make a lot of people mad. But what I told you is how things really are. Maybe through the interview, people will understand our reality in Israel a little better. If you want to know what the reality is, you have to ask people like me, not the subscribers of Ha’aretz.”