Sunday, April 26, 2009

Svensk maffia - Lasse Wierup, Matti Larsson

This is a really interesting book about organized crime in Sweden today. After having read it I didn't ever want to go out partying on The Avenue (Avenyn, the main party street in Gothenburg) again, because these assholes are big in this huge village and you'd never know when you'd confront an idiot that would pull out a gun! But gladly justice is catching up. First some background knowledge, from the book, to explain how the tactics of the criminal gangs are hitting back at them.

As so much else, it started in the USA, back in the 19th century, when italian, irish and Jewish males formed gangs to protect their 'hoods. Later on some ex soldiers that couldn't settle with normal life formed Hells Angels, and later Bandidos. Hells Angels were made famous by Hollywood and are still trying to act like a gang of innocent bikers. Bandidos are more hardcore criminals, they often don't even bother having bikes, all they want is the cash (most of them are heavy criminals, often nazis too). Later many other groups have followed - Original Gangsters, Bloods, Crips, Naserligan, Brödraskapet Wolfpack, Fucked For Life etc.

In order to protect themselves, they use wannabes to do the dirty work. These poor loosers, lacking male role models, looking for a brotherhood, avoiding women (p14), entering crime to get some easy money and fame, do all the shooting, killing and other criminal activities, leaving the leaders "clean". The business idea, by the way, is to use the dangerous image they work hard on keeping up, to squeeze money out of people, but they also engage in drug and weapon trade, the sex industry, internet gambling ( and as two examples) etc.

Now, this is were it is now hitting back! Because the loosers are being pushed too far. For years and years they have to bring beer, wash the toilets, beat up and shoot people, and now they are fed up with it! So they squeek, because they realize there's no point - the easy money wasn't all that easy, the fame is far away and it's not all that cool being a criminal.

This setback is a very good thing indeed for the modern world, as justice and democracy is under threat by these gangs, making their own laws, following their own rules (p18). It is estimated that there are about 650.000 gang members in the Americas! The police has had a very tough time fighting these gangs too, as they (at least in Sweden) underestimated the threat. A very dangerous thing is that "normal" people and celebrities hang around these people. Examples are Frank Andersson hanging out with Thomas Möller (the leader of HA Malmö, the first club in Sweden). Hannah Graaf dating another criminal leader. In the US, Snoop Dogg, NWA and Warren G are backing Crips, while The Game, Dipsetand DJ Quik are backing Bloods. At the same time people sticking up against them, have not been backed up by ordinary man (Masoud and Khan Salar Garakoei in Gothenburg eg).

Rounding this off, some words from a man that got out of his criminal path:
"Man får aldrig tänka att man är säker, då är man farligt ute. Hela min existens idag går ut på att se värdet i att bara vara mig själv. Det är en oupphörlig kamp för att kunna vara vanlig. Jag var aldrig rädd för att få stryk eller ens att bli skjuten och dö. Jag var bara rädd för att vara vanlig."