The White Slave Trade Involving European Women

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 Recently there was news item that a young school from England had gone missing. The girl was not recovered and many people expressed apprehension that the girl may have been kidnapped. This is how my focus on the kidnapping of European girls caught my attention.

The slave tradeof Negroes to work in theplantationsis well documented and is a fact ofhistory. Forts like the one at Cape Castle in Ghana on the West coast of Africa stand as testimony to the black slave trade. But there was another slave trade which is not so well documented. This is referred to as the White slave trade and solely concerned white women.

This slave trade is to an extant still alive and INTERPOL is trying its best to break it.The slave tradeof white women started from the 15thcenturyand even earlier. It stemmed from the fact that the rich Arabs and Caliphs desired white women for their harems. The Caliphs and Sultans greatly desired European women. This was a commodity not easily available. Hence these Arabs hired agentsand professionaltouts who for astronomical sums of money either lured or kidnapped unsuspecting young European girls for the harems of the Arabs. There is no end to the people who for a tidy some of money will lure an unsuspecting girl, drug her and take her away.

There were cases of young girls going for a walk and being spirited away. There was  an elaboratemechanismand the girl could not  escape. She would be taken to the Sultan’s harem. The sultans were very particular that the girl being supplied was a virgin. No payments were made in case the girl was not a virgin. There is a very graphic account of this trade in the novel the Lustful Turk.

The tradecontinued well nigh into the 20thcentury, but now is in decline. The hey day of this period was the 18th and 19thcentury.in terms of numbers the white slave trade involved very few women, but it certainly didexist. Though this trade is on the decline, but again now and then cases surface of the kidnapping of a girl,  who probably ends up in the harem of a Sheikh.

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