Who was Meyer Lansky?

Who was Meyer Lansky and what was his influence on Las Vegas? A Russian foreign Jewish immigrant. Lansky arrived in America in 1911. Being from the lower East Side of Manhattan growing up in the same streets as Bugsy Siegel. A man with a colorful background to be polite. Meyer Lansky was said to be a man to operate with integrity. Choose his friends carefully and who’s handshake was said to be worth more than any written agreement.

Meyer was friendly and once said: Be nice, a thousand friends can’t protect you from one enemy. Lansky was the accountant to the entire mob. In 1931 the Italian Jewish and Irish mobs joined forces to form the National Crime syndicate in order to create more harmony and more revenue.  Lansky handled the finances and was more of a businessman the brains with a cool calm attitude and kept clear of the Mob, Syndicate, or Commissions criminal activities.

Bugsy Siegel who ran the Flamingo on behalf of the Commission was murdered six months after the casino opened on June 20th, 1947, but Lansky would own a part of the Flamingo for the next 20 years.

Crook or War Hero?

Meyer Lansky was a notorious organized crime figure who was active in the mid-20th century. While there are some reports that he may have provided some intelligence information to the U.S. government during World War II, it is not clear that he played a significant role in the war effort or in fighting the war.

Lansky was primarily known for his involvement in organized crime, particularly in the area of gambling. He was a key figure in the development of the National Crime Syndicate, which was a loose association of organized crime groups that dominated the criminal underworld in the United States from the 1920s through the 1950s.

They provided information about potential threats and helped to identify potential saboteurs who might be working to disrupt the war effort.

However, it is important to note that Lansky and other organized crime figures did not necessarily provide this assistance out of any sense of patriotism or loyalty to the United States. Rather, they may have seen it as an opportunity to curry favor with government officials and to protect their own interests. In fact, there are some reports that Lansky and other members of the Syndicate may have been involved in illegal activities, such as black market trading and the smuggling of goods, during the war.

During World War II, Lansky and other members of the Syndicate reportedly worked with U.S. military officials to help protect the ports of New York City and other major cities from infiltration by enemy agents. They provided information about potential threats and helped to identify potential saboteurs who might be working to disrupt the war effort.


Lansky is perhaps best known for his association with the notorious gangster Lucky Luciano, with whom he helped establish the National Crime Syndicate in the 1930s. The Syndicate was a loose confederation of criminal organizations that dominated organized crime in the United States for several decades. Lansky was also involved in a number of other criminal enterprises, including bootlegging during Prohibition, gambling, and money laundering.

Despite his criminal activities, Lansky was never convicted of any major crimes, and he lived a long and relatively wealthy life. He eventually retired from organized crime in the 1970s and moved to Israel, where he died in 1983. Lansky’s life has been the subject of numerous books, films, and television shows, and he remains a legendary figure in the history of American organized crime. See Lansky on Netflix.

Famous Quotes

“We’re bigger than U.S. Steel.” – Meyer Lansky

“Nobody’s all good or all bad. Everything’s a blend. It’s just a question of the proportions.” – Meyer Lansky

“I have more respect for a man who lets me know where he stands, even if he’s wrong, than the one who comes up like an angel and is nothing but a devil.” – Meyer Lansky

“We’re not murderers. All we did was put guys on the spot and tell ’em they’re gonna die.” – Meyer Lansky

“I never lie to any man because I don’t fear anyone. The only time you lie is when you are afraid.” – Meyer Lansky

“A smart man only believes half of what he hears, a wise man knows which half.” – Meyer Lansky

“The only thing I ever killed was a good story.” – Meyer Lansky

“There’s no such thing as good money or bad money. There’s just money.” – Meyer Lansky

“You can get much farther with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone.” – Meyer Lansky

“Don’t take a butcher’s word for it that his meat is the best.” – Meyer Lansky

Please note that these quotes are attributed to Meyer Lansky but may not be verbatim. They provide a glimpse into his perspective and personality during his time as a key figure in organized crime.

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