Solidarity, Liquid Crystals, and Computer Vision
The 1982, the International Congress of Mathematicians should have been held in Warsaw, but the political situation there did not allow it. On 13 December 1981, in the early hours of the morning, General Wojciech Jaruzelski declared a state of war and imposed martial law: the rights to strike and hold public protests were suspended, as were the right to call public meetings. The junta imposed judiciary procedures that allowed for summary judgements and the denial of any appeal processes, even in the case of death sentences. The main object of these repressive rules was Solidarność, the union that had made life difficult for the previous government through waves of strikes and strong political actions of dissent based on Catholic and anti-Communist ideologies. On that tragic night in 1981, its entire leadership, including Lech Walesa, were arrested, together with thousands of others. The prisoners were then held in structures that were wholly inadequate to cope with the rigors of the Polish winter.
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