…Amnesty International contend the Israeli government and the police have largely turned a blind eye to this trade [in foreign women] going on under their nose. Exactly how a nation that arose on the back of a history of victimization can be so slow to act firmly to root out the systemic exploitation and abuse of smuggled females within their own society is a mystery that is difficult to fathom.
Many Jewish writers and commentators in the US and Canada have been shocked by the impunity of Israeli pimps and gangsters. Many are dismayed by the apparent unwillingness of the Israeli government to crack down on a trade that the authorities are all too well aware of. Here in Canada the respected investigative journalist, Victor Malarek, has done some excellent work in exposing the trade.
There is a strong racist element to the trade in Israel. Leah Gruenpeter-Gold, a co-director of the Awareness Center in Tel Aviv, claims that these young Eastern European women are being sacrificed to the sexual needs of males, in a culture that protects the virtue of the Jewish female. She and her associate spoke of their disgust at the manner in which some orthodox Jews take advantage of these women.
The haredin - orthodox Jews - crowd into Tel Aviv brothels on Friday mornings and afternoons for pre-Shabbat fun and games. In the area of the Stock Exchange and Diamond Exchange this activity is particularly in evidence. Since the orthodox cannot masturbate according to religious law, they must have sex with a woman. Their law prohibits them from using condoms, so they have to pay the pimps more in order to have "the privilege".
Grunpeter-Gold claims the victims are being sacrificed ..."because these women are not human beings ... they are foreign women. The religious prefer it to be with foreign women because then they don't wrong Jewish women."
Why isn't more done to stop the ongoing sexual victimization of women in Israel? According to the girls working in the trade, police and other prominent members of Israeli society are reputedly involved themselves - sometimes in taking bribes or other "business", or just as clients. A percentage of orthodox as mentioned are also involved. Who knows how deep the collusion goes - it's impossible to track. But certainly such connections would work against official attempts to crack down on the trade.
Of course, from the late 1800s through the late 1920s, Jewish pimps filled brothels in South America with Jewish girls taken from the same areas of Russia and Ukraine the current non-Jewish sex slaves are stolen from. Nathan Englander's new novel, The Ministry of Special Cases, deals with the aftermath of this sordid history.
But Maconachy's point still stands:
"Exactly how a nation that arose on the back of a history of victimization can be so slow to act firmly to root out the systemic exploitation and abuse of smuggled females within their own society is a mystery that is difficult to fathom."
[Hat Tip: Seymour.]
UPDATE: It turns out this is a 6-month-old article and, low and behold, Rebecca Honig Friedman posted on it in a much more timely fashion over on Jewess. She now notes that since her original post, Israel has been doing a little better in dealing with human trafficking. Despite that, though, Israel still has a long way to go.