Surveillance and repressions in 20th century USA

Marcin Kotowski (Institute for Quantum Computing, Waterloo, Canada),

Image to the right taken from Hexen 2.0 (check out esp. Hexen 2.0 Tarot)

Slides (in Polish)


Post-9/11 human rights infractions, surveillance and general assault on personal freedoms by Bush's administration are quite well known. However, Bush's presidency is far from being an isolated event in this respect - similar attempts at curtailing freedom and persecuting selected ethnic and social groups had been successfully attempted in the past. In my talk, I covered briefly similar periods of increased surveillance and scapegoating, bringing to light several dark and less known periods in American history. I began with the First World War and repressions against German Americans, then moved to the first "Red Scare" - a wave of persecution of socialists, workers and leftists organizations perpetrated in the name of "national security". Then I described attacks on Mexican and Japanese minorities (including interment of 100,000 Japanese Americans during WWII). The rest of my talk was devoted to McCarthyism and surveillance operations initiated by FBI, including the notorious COINTELPRO programs

Further reading

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