Friday, October 05, 2007

Stories of Human Trafficking

An unnecessarily convoluted issue. No clear cut guidance how to deal with this growing problem where profits of billions of dollars are made by under and above ground thugs with sure collaboration of local and international politicians and suited businessmen. Read the following excerpt:
What is clear is that the conditions surrounding trafficked women and children include all the classic elements traditionally associated with slavery: abduction, false promises, transportation to a strange place, loss of freedom, abuse, violence, and deprivation. Those involved are isolated, controlled by various emotional and physical techniques, made dependent on drugs and alcohol, duped and terrorized into submission. Smuggling of migrants, with which trafficking is too often confused, is fundamentally different: smuggled people have consented to travel, and when they reach their destinations they expect to be free; the trafficked, even if they have initially consented, remain victims of continuing exploitation at the hands of their traffickers.
For many, Globalization along with less restricted trades have done"wonders", moving in and out of labor and capital from rich to poor nations and vice versa, though the movements of labor from poor nations to rich nations have remained to be restricted with stringent immigration laws. "Stringent restrictions and prohibitive immigration laws are effective in keeping out those seeking asylum or economic migration. It is within this subworld of failing economies, poverty, discrimination, corrupt governments, and new technology that trafficking flourishes. Not all of it involves sex: large numbers of people are trafficked each year—perhaps a third of the total—to meet demands for cheap, slavelike labor for agriculture, domestic service, and industry; but its most visible and pernicious manifestation is the sex industry.

About the traffickers themselves, less is known, not least because their victims, insufficiently protected by law, are often too afraid to give evidence, and because there are so many kinds of traffickers. But a pattern is emerging. At the top end of the scale are the large, extremely sophisticated criminal networks, usually running alongside those involved in drugs and arms, but distinct and cellular, often operating across several countries, transporting their victims as chattel over borders, from group to group, and profiting from corruption among police forces and border officials."

More startling facts are emerging:

Many of the traffickers are in fact women, and most of the girls trafficked out of Moldova today are reported to be duped, recruited, and groomed by women, some of them former prostitutes, who often accompany them reassuringly on the first leg of their journeys. Most unsettling is the fact that some of the "introducers" are boyfriends, "aunties," or even parents, willing, for a cut, or out of financial desperation, to traduce those they profess to love.

When I read the following paragraph from The New York Review of Books, it compels me to wonder, why is so much indifferences, and almost invisible public outcry and lack of effective actions on these real terrors imposed on our global society's weakest of the weak, the vulnerable, who desperately seek our "civilizations" gentle but firm intervention? I don't have the concrete answer to this, like many, only the vaguest patterns of this world's rampant exploitative farce becomes slightly more clearer to some who wishes to look at it rather than averting eyes and ears from truth of inconveniences:

According to End Child Prostitution in Asian Tourism, children, sold by destitute parents or abducted by criminal syndicates, are currently being trafficked from Vietnam to Thailand, from Burma to the Pacific Rim countries, and from Nepal to India, where, in the brothels of Mumbai, the fair-skinned girls of Nepal are particularly prized. Some are no more than eight years old.

Undoubtedly there are groups of activists who are working tirelessly against this abomination of our "humaneness", but the disparity between the rhetoric of the anti-traffickers and "the willingness either to protect and assist the trafficked or to catch and prosecute the traffickers, who, even if caught, are seldom successfully prosecuted" is staggering to the least. Even "protection tends to be offered only when victims agree to assist in prosecuting their traffickers, something that many women, fearing reprisals and repercussions, are afraid to do."

Michael Korzinski who is a clinical doctor in London's the Helen Bamber Foundation articulates it very well: "In the eyes of the law, trafficking is all about criminality and complicity. There is a total lack of understanding of the sheer brutality it involves. For us, trafficking is another form of torture. It is as sophisticated as state-sponsored torture, except that it is happening not in a brutal repressive country, but in a block of flats in Turin or a leafy suburb of Vermont."

Link to The New York Review of Books Article:

Women and Children for Sale

No comments:

Post a Comment