Basing his conclusions on carefully culled scraps of evidence, historian Mordechai Zalkin states that until World War II, the underworld in Warsaw, Vilna, Odessa and other large cities was controlled largely by Jewish syndicates. .
The mystery surrounding the identity of “harodef hane’alam” (literally, the “pursuer who disappeared“) remains intact. The so-called “pursuer” belonged to the realm of institutionalized crimes that were perpetrated in the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe 150 years ago. His identity was one of the communities’ best-kept secrets. His task: to hire mercenary killers to operate against people who threatened the community. He was chosen from within a small leadership group and only the group’s members knew his identity. The local leadership entrusted him with responsibility for the community‘s internal security.
The self appointed “leaders” of the shetls which sprouted in many European cities had life and death power over its residents It was this model of absolute obedience lack of dissent and dissenter killing that was later used in Jewish controlled communist states and states captured by Jews eg France after the “French Revolution The Cheka and KGB were modelled exactly on this model “
This man left behind a great many traces and thereby became an intriguing Jewish legend. “Every community of the time had its informers,” Dr. Zalkin says. “It was a profession – just as there was a rabbi and a shoemaker, there was also an informer. As long as the informing concerned only `small’ matters, everything proceeded smoothly – the informer earned his pay and nothing happened.The problem arose when the informers gave the authorities information that was liable to harm the integrity of the community concretely.”
In short when a Govt informer gave the Government any information of major Jewish crimes or acts of treason which could implicate the Cohens or Levites Rabbis the informers had to die
This was why the communities established a security apparatus headed by an official anonymous “pursuer.”
Dr. Zalkin is familiar with the phenomenon (of Jews and prostitution) . He pulls a book by an American researcher from one of the shelves. The entire volume is about Jewish organizations that rounded up Jewish girls and sold them into prostitution. Zalkin says he can map the network of Jewish brothels in 19th-century Eastern Europe, but immediately reneges.
“The thieves and criminals were part of the local folklore, part of the daily reality. The Jewish underworld was also reflected in song, in literature and in the press,” Zalkin says as he takes out a book of old folk songs and recites one of them. “There is music for it, too,” he says. “Here, this song tells about someone whose mother is a thief and whose father is a thief, whose sister does what she does and whose brother is a smuggler.”
Vilna was not an exceptional hothouse of crime. Organizations like Gold Flag and the Brothers Society operated also in Warsaw, Odessa, Bialystok and Lvov. Zalkin explains the context:The late 19th and early 20th century were bad years, in which the Jews of Eastern Europe did their best simply to survive. People didn’t know where their next meal was coming from, whole families were crowded into cellars the size of a regular room. Masses of people lived from hand to mouth. Whoever could, immigrated, mainly to America. Between 1888 and the outbreak of World War I, in 1914, two million Jews from Eastern Europe moved to America.
It was these Jewish immigrants which formed the bulk of todays American Jewry Needless to say they carried their criminal tendencies to America where rhe just found the perfect territory for growth
Until World War I, , Jews had been a key element in the population of Eastern Europe. “From a certain point of view, these were Jewish cities,” Zalkin explains. “For example, 50 percent of the residents of Vilna were Jews. Because most of the cities had a large Jewish population, it follows that the percentage of Jews involved in crime was also [proportionately] high. The biggest gangster in Odessa, a huge city, was none other than Benya Krik” – the same one from the title of the book by the Soviet-Jewish author Isaac Babel: “Benya Krik, The Gangster, and Other Stories.”
Jews could be found at almost all levels of underworld activity , from the individual thief to gangs that numbered more than 100 members. The large organizations operated in the cities, which they divided into sectors among themselves. Each organization had a charter, a clear hierarchy and internal courts, and its work was divided according to different areas, such as theft, protection money, prostitution, pickpocketing and murder.The art of crime was treated seriously,as it was a major source of livelihood for many people. Between the world wars the idea was even raised of establishing a school for thieves in Vilna. It’s not known if the idea was put into practice.
In 19th-century Russia the best place to rob people was on the roads. There weren’t enough policemen and there were a great many forests. The convoys that traveled the roads were easy pickings. Saul Ginzburg, one of the important historians of Russian Jewry, describes groups of Jewish thieves, whom he calls “toughs and predators.” After the heist the thieves slipped away into the woods. A typical gang of roadside robbers numbered between 10 and 15 men, who provided for themselves and their families by means of their booty.
It is the desendants of these men that form the bulk of the so called “Russian Mafia ” today like the vory v zakone The most dreaded “Eussian ” gangster today is the Jew Semion Mogileivich
Mordechai Zalkin has spent much of the past 13 years burrowing in Eastern European archives. They are his laboratory, the place where he looks for the remote margins of Jewish history and brings them to life in his academic work.
“At that time the Jews smuggled everything that moved and in some places the Russian authorities pressured the leaders to take action before they intervened,” Zalkin relates. “A leaflet like this shows that smuggling was a concrete social phenomenon that characterized the Jewish community, not a marginal issue.”
The physical location of Jews on the borderlands of empires and their concentration in urban settings and in certain types of trade and commerce made certain criminal activities stereotypically “Jewish.” Foremost among these was smuggling. The porous and artificial nature of national frontiers in Eastern Europe, the capricious nature of import duties, protectionism, and the sizable profits to be made, ensured that smuggling was a common phenomenon. As the predominant trade and commercial class in the Russian, Austrian, and German borderlands, with connections across frontiers, Jews were well situated to engage in such activity. All manner of goods were smuggled, including tobacco, specie, and counterfeit banknotes. Jewish merchants of Shklov, for example, a town that became a major frontier entrepôt after the first partition of Poland in 1772, engaged in a massive operation to smuggle counterfeit banknotes into the Russian interior, under the protection of the town’s owner, Count Semen Gavriilovich Zorich, a former favorite of Empress Catherine II. Shklov merchants extended their activities to Moscow, where Russian merchants accused them of fraudulent bankruptcies and other financial irregularities. An official investigation into these claims prompted a ban on the enrollment of Jews in the merchant estate in Russia’s interior provinces, the first of the restrictions that were to create what subsequently became the Jewish Pale of Settlement. Source
The Jewish mobsters in the United States are far more widely known than those of Eastern Europe and have been the subjects of quite a few films and books. The gangsters Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lansky have become legendary figures. Ten years ago Prof. Robert Rockaway, from the department of Jewish history at Tel Aviv University, published the first important study of these criminal organizations (in English: “But He Was Good to His Mother: The Lives and Crimes of Jewish Gangsters,” Gefen Publishing House, paperback edition, 2000). According to Rockaway‘s findings, the vast majority of the Jewish criminals in America were from Eastern Europe or the sons of immigrants from there. They did not continue a tradition of crime, but created a home-grown tradition in their new homeland.
Generally, the reason for their criminal activity was not to obtain bread, but butter. Most of the Jewish criminals in the U.S. were from working-class families and grasped at a very early age that hard work was not a recipe for economic advancement. They didn’t have capital to invest, and the underworld offered a way to get rich quick.
Jews were among the biggest criminals in the U.S. at the beginning of the last century. “In terms of crime they did everything,” Rockaway says.“Drugs, murder, smuggling alcohol. They had no limits. A Jew, Arnold Rothstein, was the head of the New York underworld in the 1920s. He created the largest gambling empire the U.S. have ever seen until then. He controlled most of the gangs in New York, including drugs and liquor. Rothstein was the first entrepreneur in the U.S. who created a well-oiled organization to smuggle liquor during Prohibition.”
My Note How in the name of God did a tiny minority commit such brazen acts of organized criminality and get away with it? Surely the majority and till then at least nominally ruling White Anglo Saxons knew of all this Surely their leaders could in a few days wipe out these gangs ………..and yet nothing happened My guess is Jewish High Finance often helped or possibly partnered these murderous thugs and used their massive financial and political clout to let the gangsters prosper
Jewish-American gangsters also helped in the struggle for Israel’s creation during the 1940s. In his book, Rockaway describes how an emissary of the pre-state Haganah defense organization (the forerunner of the Israel Defense Forces) approached Meyer Lansky, one of the major players in the crime scene in America, and with his intervention, shipments of weapons and military equipment were smuggled out of New York harbor, bound for Palestine. Lansky wasn’t the only one. According to Rockaway, other Jews from the underworld donated tens of thousands of dollars to the Haganah.