McCarthyism and Activism in Cold War New York

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Phillip Deery looks back at how McCarthyism shook up the lives of six political activists with ties to New York City by undermining civil liberties, curtailing equality before the law, and tarnishing the ideals of American democracy. In The Red Apple: Communism and McCarthy in Cold War New York Deery explores the human consequences of the widespread paranoia that gripped a nation.


Phillip Deery

Comments [5]

RJ from prospect hts

This book would be well paired with the recent book on the Dulles brothers, and how they riddled the world with spies that systematically undermined democratically elected governments that disagreed with the US's economic and imperialistic approach to the world. The proxy wars caused millions of deaths of innocents trying to better their own lives so that the "big powers" could dominate and "succeed" for their own--in the US racist and classist structure, in the USSR its paranoid and anti-Semitic one. Snowden reveals only the latest of these practices. We without the ability to directly affect global policy are all endangered.

Feb. 05 2014 02:04 PM
Tom O'Hara from Malverne, Long Island

The first time I ever heard of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade was as a 17-year-old applying to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (a.k.a. Kings Point) in 1969. Midshipmen at Kings Point are in the U.S. Navy Reserve and are commissioned as ensigns at graduation, and so must be vetted. The application included a list of "subversive" organizations, right and left, and we had to respond yes or no as to whether we were then or ever members of any of them. I remember wondering how something called the Abraham Lincoln Brigade could possibly be subversive.

Feb. 05 2014 01:42 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

I was a little Red when I was a kid back in the '50s, and used to watch the HUAC on TV. But after Reagan I realized that McCarthy was not all that far from the mark.

Feb. 05 2014 01:27 PM
Snow from NYC

i think the whole purpose of the spy network infrastructure we are witnessing come into existence today is to avoid the whole 'naming of names' function.
The spy network will name names on our behalf. Scary, Snowden has said they know who our friend's friends are and every person we have had a conversation with - I Believe him.

Feb. 05 2014 01:22 PM
Big Jim from Long Island

Can't wait for this segment.... I love it when Leonard talks about history!!!

Feb. 05 2014 01:08 PM

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