This book written in 1963 is about Las Vegas, a city in which organised crime controlls
organised gambling - and everything else.
It wasn't until Senator Estes Kefauver held hearings in more than a dozen cities
in the early 1950s that organized crime was given any visibility in postwar America. In 1943 the
Mafia helped the OSS liberate Sicily from Mussolini, who had little tolerance for any competition.
After the war the Mafia was as strong as ever, but not as conspicuous in the U.S. as they were in
earlier decades. One center of Mafia activity in the U.S. was the Chicago- Hollywood-Vegas
connection. After Bugsy Siegel was blown away in 1947, the mob began taking over Las Vegas in
earnest, buying off the authorities as needed. Legalized gambling made for high profits
(particularly when an unreported percentage was skimmed off the top), and casinos were excellent
for laundering money.
The questions asked and answered in this carefully documented expose of the real Las Vegas are the following:
Why was Bugsy Siegel, acknowledged as the founding father of modern Las Vegas, liquidated?
How much has Jimmy Hoffa made available for the construction of Las Vegas' most elegant hotels?
What was Senator Barry Goldwater's interest in labor racketter Willy Bioff?
Why are celebrities and entertainers like Frank Sinatra so fascinated by the 'swingingest' state in the Union?
And why was the body of a United States Senator who dies a few days before Election Day conceiled
and preserved in a bathtub full of ice until the votes were counted?