Economic impulses and commercial forces drive globalization, but its impact goes far beyond the economy to affect all facets of social and political life. Powerful commercial interests have given rise to a commercial and commercializing global culture that, it is quite apparent, will not be satisfied until it reaches into the deepest recess of social life. Most recently the commercial global culture has generated a new form of slavery, more brutal and degrading than any form of slavery known thus far.
Millions of vulnerable women and unsuspecting children throughout the world, some as young as ten years old, are trapped into a vicious and ugly world of exploitation, disease, and abuse. These children are sold, traded, prostituted, and trafficked under the watching eyes of a world community that has decided to ignore their plight.
Most of these sex slaves are kept by their masters until their commercial value deteriorates as a result of their deteriorating health conditions with the advancement of the many sexual diseases they are exposed to, including HIV and AIDS. Sadly, the end of their conditions of slavery does not signal the end of their miseries, but the beginning of a life of poverty, illness, and shame.
Scope Of The Problem
Although most governments, particularly governments of countries where sex slaves originate, do not provide information and statistics on trafficking in women, and seem to be oblivious to the plight of these vulnerable children, studies conducted by NGOs and research institutions reveal a human tragedy of great proportions. The figures given by NGOs and individual researchers are often rough estimations, as accurate data are scarce. The difficulty of coming up with hard figures stems from two interrelated factors: (1) trafficking in women is conducted by organized criminals who use deception and intimidation to maintain a wall of silence and secrecy around their international trade, and (2) the criminal syndicates involved in this ugly trade are often backed by corrupt politicians and law enforcement agents who use all means at their disposal to provide cover up for crimes that provide lucrative income.
There is hardly any region in the world that escapes the activities of sex slavery syndicates. Trafficking in women is reported in Africa, Europe, North America, South Asia, and East and
The International Organization for Migration (IOM), a European Union agency, estimates that some 500,000 women were trafficked to
Many of the women involved in the sex trade are underage girls who have been duped into their state of slavery by an elaborate network of organized criminals. The nonprofit organization End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography, and the Traffic in Children for Sexual Purposes (ECPAT) provided the following figures on the number of children involved in the sex industry in 1994:
Intimidation And DeceptionThe sex slaves who are bought and sold in red light districts around the globe come from impoverished communities. A significant number of them are underage girls. Shrewd slave traffickers who offer their parents tempting sums of money dupe these young and unassuming girls into sex slavery. The parents are deceived into believing that the money is given in exchange for employment or marriage.
The trafficking of Nepalese girls into
The wicked methods of slave traffickers are well documented in numerous cases. One such case is that of Mira, a 13-year-old from
In the nineties, a new tourism industry, thriving on child exploitation and abuse, emerged in South and Southeast Asia, concentrating mainly in
Of 160 foreign pedophiles arrested on child sex-abuse charges in Southeast Asia between 1992 and 1994, 25% were American, 18% German, 14% Australian, and 12% English. (End Child Prostitution in Asian Tourism, Lambiet, 17 May 1998)
In 1990 an orphanage owner in
Sexual slavery and sex tourism described above are fueled by an increasingly he
The attitude of youngsters influenced by the rising he
Stopping The Abuse
Sexual slavery is a serious crime of global proportion, and should be viewed as such. To combat it, we must view it not simply as a legal problem, but as a moral issue as well. As long as pornography, promiscuity, and violence are glorified in movies produced by entertainment centers, most notably