Enemy of the people is a phrase “typically used by leaders to refer to hostile foreign governments or subversive organizations,” the New York Times wrote.
“It also echoed the language of autocrats who seek to minimize dissent.”
“That’s how dictators get started.
When you look at history, the first thing that dictators do is shut down the press,”
John McCain on “Meet the Press.”
The Roman Senate grew so infuriated that they declared Nero an enemy of the people and drew up plans for his arrest and execution until he took his own life.
Henrik Ibsen wrote an 1882 play called “An Enemy of the People.”Hitler liked the play and the term. He had Goebbels use it; “Each Jew is a sworn enemy of the German people.”
Lenin used “the peoples’ enemies” for anyone who opposed the Bolsheviks. Enemies of the people were ostracized and even their friends were under suspicion.For foes of Stalin, being branded an “enemy of the people” was a death sentence.
“For both Lenin and Stalin, journalists and intellectuals who didn’t share their point of view were among the most hated enemies,” Serhiy Yekelchyk told VOA.
Mao Zedong deployed the phrase “class enemies of the people” against people critical of his policies and dictates.
Donald Trump says ‘fake news’ media is ‘enemy of the American people’
– The Independent
— Content excerpted from The Washington Post article 2/17/2017