||5. Internal Military Surveillance||Page 12|
The close relationship between external war and internal military interventions is revealed by the increased use of internal military surveillance during wartime. Massive secret surveillance of the USA by the military began in World War I. It has been documented by Jensen (1991), although much of the information has been secret and we do not know how much is still hidden in unavailable government files. During World War I, a campaign was initiated in conjunction with big business to spy on workers and union organizers. The campaign was led by the American Protective League (APL) associated with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Plant Protective services (PPS) associated with the Military Intelligence Department (MID) of the War Department. The APL attained a field force of about 100,000 who spied on workers and unions in tens of thousands of industrial plants with defense contracts. The MID had hundreds of agents working secretly in industrial cities. According to Jensen (1991, p. 152):
Agents infiltrated labor unions where they made regular, detailed reports on meetings, organizing, strike strategies, and the activities of leaders. Agents sometimes assumed leadership or took the initiative in causing dissension in the unions or submitted recommendations that employees be fired for union activities or for radicalism.
Although the APL and MID were sup- posed to be disbanded after the war, the system of internal surveillance was continued under military contingency plans called War Plans White and later Emergency Plans White, administered by the secret G-2 section of military intelligence. War Plans White was established in 1919 by the War Plans Department under General Haan and a special committee of the Army War College that came to the conclusion that the USA was on the verge of a revolution (Jensen, 1991, p. 188):
Russians and Austro-Hungarians were the most dangerous elements, but any area with a large foreign element was in danger. The 'Black Belt' of the South similarly was a 'region of potential danger'. Neither blacks nor immigrants, particularly those who spoke Yiddish or Polish, made good officers. Officers concluded that a class war was a distinct possibility within two or three years. Each community would have its revolutionists and loyalists, and there would be no sectional division as there had been in the Civil War. Therefore, all people and the entire infrastructure of the country were in danger. Plants, railroads, telephones, telegraphs, roads - all were liable to fall into the hands of the revolutionaries.
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