Aug 24, 2011

Protection Racket In Geula

"Protection" rackets happen all over the place. The person or group, often mafia of some sort, extorts his victim, the local business owners, to pay him for protection services. He offers, in exchange for a fee, to protect them from damage to their property and business, from theft, and the like. Often they pressure the resisting business-owner by showing what things they need protection from by wreaking havoc on the business, causing damage until they acquiesce.

In the Geula neighborhood of Jerusalem, the thugs, the ones who call themselves the sikrikim, wreak havoc on the local businesses. In the name of God they break windows, damage property, cause injury to people when they feel something is detrimental to their neighborhood, to their lifestyle.

Or, maybe they do so for other reasons. Maybe all that fighting, all that rioting, all that damage caused to shops in the name of tzniyus and whatever other excuses they used to justify their behavior, was all just the beginning of the extortion of a protection racket. Maybe they were just showing the local shops what will happen if they do not have the protection.

Bechadrei is reporting that yesterday they smashed the windows of a local ice cream shop and also left in the shop rotten fish and soiled diapers. In addition, they continued their fight against the Ohr HaChaim bookstore by gluing shut the locks on the store overnight.

That is nothing new, except perhaps the intensity. They have been doing this for a while. But now, according to the Bechadrei report, some young guys from the neighborhood have approached the storeowners who have suffered the damage and they offered protection services for a significant fee, promising that if they pay for the protection, their stores will no longer be attacked by the sikrikim thugs.

So, was it really all done in the name of God, in the name of keeping their lifestyle pure as they see it, or was it just a lead-up to a protection racket?

Or maybe they were really doing it to keep the neighborhood, and the protection is being offered by other people, enterprising young men. I'd like to see, if they are not in coordination with the thugs, how they plan to fend off the thugs next time they come to protest a shop.


  1. The whole system is a kind of protection racket. Follow the edicts of a particular Rabbi to the letter or someone might try to burn your house down (with your family in it). And to a lesser extent, deviate even a tiny bit from the expected behavior and you will be shunned, your kids will not be admitted to school, and will have more difficulty marrying.

  2. The Curmudgeonly Israeli Giyoret says:

    There's something particularly heinous about attacking Manny's.

  3. no one should be surprised. this is the nature of the beast. violence breeds violence which breeds more violence. along comes the corruption and you have 100% glatt kosher mafiosos.

    well, at least they still say "she'lo asani isha".

  4. I don't understand why the victimized storeowners don't just don't call the police.

  5. they don't want to be moosrim

  6. My cousin owns a printing shop in Geula. He has been there for 20 years. He refused to print pashkivilm that were pure loshon hora from a kitztoni group.They broke into his shop and destroyed a ton on very expensive equipment. he called the police to make a report. One night later that week, he left his shop and some of these kitzonim beat him with lead pipes until they thought he was dead for being a moser. He BH made it home and then they harassed his wife and daughters on the street. Finally he sold his shop and is out of business with many kids to support. This mafia business is not funny.


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