Cinema: Misery for Fun & Profit

Slave Trade in the World Today is an Italian-made documentary that pursues its righteous ends with unseemly gusto. It begins in almost Biblical solemnity, citing the U.N. declaration that "slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms." Next, Novelist Robin Maugham, nephew of Somerset, reports that he himself bought a slave in the Sahara for $105 and set him free. And who is to blame for the traffic in human beings in Africa and the Middle East? Who else but the U.S., which, Maugham says, cares only for her "vast oil interests. Britain does nothing because she...

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