I’m thinking of writing a novel based on the 1930’s Brooklyn crime syndicate Murder Incorporated. Tough Jews was written in 1998 by Rich Cohen, son of Herbie Cohen who wrote You Can Negotiate Anything.
Most Jewish gangsters came from families leaving hardship in Eastern Europe. The hardship I have in mind here is persecution. Meyer Lansky told a story about a man who told the Jews of Grodno, Poland to fight back. The idea that a bully might harm you but also take off; what do you have to lose? You see it with modern Israel. World War II provided bitter instruction. Human nature is still human nature.