I just finished reading “Red Mafiya: How the Russian Mob has Invaded America” by Robert Friedman.
Very, very scary.
The book is extrememly well documented and very persuasive: the mob is MUCH more powerful than I knew, totally ruthless, and sucking hundreds of millions of dollars out of the US and Canada annually.
Israel is overrun by the Russian mob, says Friedman, and Russia (as most informed people are already aware) is virtually a mafia state, with huge sectors of the economy, perhaps 50% or more (and higher in Moscow) being connected with gangsters. Some countries, such as Sierra Leone, are virtual gangster fiefdoms, and others, such as Switzerland, are haven for Russian dons: as many as 600 live in Switzerland, and as much as $60 billion US has been laundered through tight-lipped Swiss banks.
The Russian mob is huge in the US in gambling, the various sex industries, and all kinds of illegal drugs … not to mention the newer high-tech web scams and credit card sniffing attacks.
As has been well-documented, the mob has close connections to Russian-born NHL hockey players such as Pavel Bure and Slava Fetisov, and amazingly, the NHL has apparently done nothing about it – even hindering FBI and other law enforcement agencies in attempted investigations. The latest is so-called “white slavery,” in which thousands of Russian women are taken to North America, Asia, Europe, other places, and forced into sexual slavery in brothels, etc.
The danger is that this is so insidious …. it creeps in almost invisibly, and pretty soon you have almost a second government, taking ‘taxes,’ but giving nothing in return but death, terror, and sleeze.
And what can a country do? Fighting this kind of corruption is HARD, since all it takes is a few who will take the bribe, succumb to the extortion, and the gangsters have a toe-hold. The saddest situation is perhaps Russia: freed from one gang of thugs so recently only to fall under the ruthless grip of another band of thugs.
Russia’s gross national product has fallen for several straight years, and no wonder. With all those contribute-nothing, steal everything, rape-the-country and export the proceeds gangsters and polluted politicos in place, what do you expect? And it’s all, of course, eventually on the back of the little guy, who pays more for everything, gets less, all because some punk with power wants ‘his piece.’
I highly recommend the book: