||5. Internal Military Surveillance||Page 13|
Although we do not know much of the activities of G-2, we know from Jensen (1991, pp. 203-204) that they were active during the Bonus March by the unemployed in 1933, which was smashed by federal troops under General MacArthur, and during the San Francisco general strike of 1934, which was suppressed by military intervention.
Again during World War II a massive system of surveillance against workers and unions was established in US industries. By 1941, the FBI and G-2, with the help of the American Legion, had a system of surveillance employing 10,000 undercover informants in over 1,000 industrial plants. The Counter-Intelligence Corps of G-2 grew to 5,000 agents, almost half of whom were operating domestically in the USA, and it claimed to have a network of 250,000 secret informants. Over two million civilians were investigated during the war, and over 2,000 workers were fired or excluded from sensitive jobs.
After World War II, the information files and results of the loyalty investigations were used to purge the government, trade unions, and the professions of radical influences. G-2 surfaced again when it was revealed that the protest movement against the war in Vietnam was infiltrated and monitored by over 1,000 plain-clothes army agents operating out of 300 posts across the USA (Jensen, 1991, p. 241).
Military surveillance has always been secret, which makes it difficult to document its full extent. The Plant Protection Section of World War I was kept secret in the National Archives until 1975 (Jensen, 1991, p. 158). What we know of the military surveillance of anti-war protests in the Vietnam era came out only because of a 1970 exposť by a former agent, Christopher Pyle (Jensen, 1991, p. 246).
(End of chapter)