Operation Legacy, 2020

Operation Legacy was a government program run by the British Colonial Office (now Foreign Office) from the 1950 – 1970s which sole aim was to find and destroy any documents that incriminated Britain of racial and religious discrimination. 8,800 documents from at least 23 would have revealed torture techniques, evidence of murders and massacres. This was the time period where many colonies were gaining independence across the globe. In 1947 in New Delhi, British forces brazenly set fire to these documents, but this was followed by major embarrassment as all major Indian newspapers reported this destruction at the time. Precise methods of destruction were instructed including burning and dumping at sea. Many of the worst cases of violence which Britain inflicted upon its empire will never be known. Newly independent countries were not given “sensitive” documents but instead had to piece together their history through the scraps of information that were left. Not only did Britain commit atrocities in the first place but they worked hard to cover up the truth of history.