Minuteman PAC
March 7, 2012

You don’t hear much from the media or from anyone for that matter about President Dwight Eisenhower and illegal immigration – but you should.  Writing for the Examiner, Dave Gibson uses a brief history lesson to put the lack of immigration law enforcement by the current administration into proper context showing how the feds’ failure to enforce federal immigration law is a matter of will – not a matter of ability.

On June 17, 1954, under the direction of President Eisenhower, Immigration and Nationalization Service (INS) began a roundup of illegal immigrants for deportation in what became known as “Operation Wetback.” The roundup initially began in California and Arizona but eventually spread to Texas, Utah , Nevada and Idaho. By the end of the next month, more than 50,000 illegal immigrants had been arrested between California and Arizona.  In Texas, 80,000 illegal immigrants had been taken into custody in under two months with an estimated 500,000 to 700,000 leaving the state voluntarily or ‘self-deporting.’

Rather than being let go on the other side of the border like we do today, the illegal immigrants were sent back to Mexico on WWII-era army vehicles into the interior of Mexico. They were also ferried back to Mexico by ship from Port Isabel, Texas, to Veracruz, Mexico.

With only 750 federal agents, compared to the reported 20,000 agents we have today, the INS removed 1.3 million illegal immigrants (including those who self-deported) in just three months.

This just goes to show there are NO EXCUSES for today’s failure by the federal government to secure the southern border.

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