witch hunt

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also witch hunt (wĭch′hŭnt′)
An investigation carried out ostensibly to uncover subversive activities but actually used to harass and undermine those with differing views.

witch′-hunt′er n.
witch′-hunt′ing adj. & n.

witch′ hunt`

or witch′-hunt`,

an intensive, often highly publicized effort to discover and expose those who are disloyal, subversive, etc., as in a government or political party, usu. on the basis of slight or doubtful evidence.
witch′ hunt`er, n.
witch′-hunt`ing, n.
References in periodicals archive ?
An email snafu accidentally leaks a campaign attack ad, the chairman of the Railroad Commission warns of an ExxonMobil witch hunt and a 10-day out list of candidate filings - all that and more in the latest issue of our subscriber-only newsletter for political insiders ($).
This witch hunt which is carried out throughout the public sphere and includes posts and activity on the social media, represents a clear violation of fundamental rights, such as freedom of expression in Turkey," she said.
WITCH HUNT: A CENTURY OF MURDER Channel 5, 9pm Four hundred years ago, hundreds of innocent people were persecuted, tortured and killed as an obsession to stamp out Satanism swept the British Isles, resulting in mass witch hunts and trials.
He said: "The essence of the witch hunt is to seize on any allegation - no matter how flimsy - arrest you, publicise you and see what comes.
Author, Witchcraze: A New History of the European Witch Hunt
26 ( ANI ): A tabloid in Uganda has reportedly divulged the names of the country's "200 top homosexuals", posing threat for gays, who now fear a witch hunt following the revelation.
really gives us concern that this is some kind of a witch hunt.
A Downing Street source described the ambush on ITV1's This Morning as a "silly stunt", while Mr Cameron himself warned against a witch hunt against people who are gay.
Summary: Arsene Wenger has claimed Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas is the subject of a witch hunt.
The engine of suppression was set up, and the witch hunt gave it a reason for continued existence.
We did not need SOX, maybe the closure of a few loopholes, but not a legalized Salem-style witch hunt.
Speakers insisted such a commission would not be a witch hunt, but would seek fairness.