Yes We Can!

Posted on February 23, 2012


Do you wish you had a nickel or a dime for every time you’ve heard a mindless politician or other talking head prattling the soundbite, “Well you just can’t round up and deport 11 Million Illegals, that’s an impossible solution”, or some variation of unqualified statement which they can’t and won’t defend with facts?   We even saw some of them on the GOP Presidential debate on CNN last night from Arizona.  The advocates of open borders and non-enforcement of our immigration laws, believe that because it has been repeated so many times that it is a self evident truth that no one who wants to be taken seriously in the discussion should even dare to question.

Well – I’m not only questioning it. I’m answering it – conclusively and beyond refutation.   We already have deported millions of illegals in this country and for as long as the effort was funded and sustained, it worked to a staggering degree of success.

What I’m going to outline for you next, will stun you if you haven’t been exposed to it to this point.   Many people have not, because as is typical of the liberal controlled media – such an episode in our nation’s recent history would blow the doors off of their ignorant premises.   The claim that we can’t deport Illegals in large sweeps is a complete and total lie.   Here’s the proof:

After about 3 years on the job, President Dwight D. Eisenhower came to the conclusion that the problem of illegal employment and uncontrolled border crossings had to be addressed. Part of what informed his conclusion were observations such as this one from a report published in the New York Times in 1951:

“The rise in illegal border-crossing by Mexican ‘wetbacks’ to a current rate of more than 1,000,000 cases a year has been accompanied by a curious relaxation in ethical standards extending all the way from the farmer-exploiters of this contraband labor to the highest levels of the Federal Government.”

What is being referred to by the ‘Grey Lady’ by reference to a ‘curious relaxation of ethical standards’ is the fact that Ranchers in the Western States were powerful political contributors and whenever the hard working men of the Border Patrol would attempt to do the job of enforcement of immigration laws, some rancher would immediately get in touch with his Congressman or Senator and squeal like a pig plucked from the mud, until the strings were pulled in Washington to call off the raids.

The growers were addicted to illegal labor to the extent that they shunned the official ‘Bracero’ program.   The ‘Bracero’ program had human rights and labor standards that cost quite a bit more to these businessmen than breaking the law did.   Remarkable how some things never change.

According to the Handbook of Texas Online, published by the University of Texas at Austin and the Texas State Historical Association, this illegal workforce had a severe impact on the wages of ordinary working Americans.   The Handbook Online reports that a study by the President’s Commission on Migratory Labor in Texas in 1950 found that cotton growers in the Rio Grande Valley, where most illegal aliens in Texas worked, paid wages that were “approximately half” the farm wages paid elsewhere in the state.

Once President Eisenhower was sufficiently convinced that this activity was driving down wage standards (and consequently depriving the Federal government of a sizable amount of revenue), he began pulling together a plan and an apparatus to confront the problem.   He called his former classmate at West Point and former veteran of the 101st Airborne Division, General Joseph Swing, out of retirement and put him in charge of devising a strategy to perform a massive sweep of California, Arizona, Texas and New Mexico with the objective of deporting hundreds of thousands of Illegals.

This campaign was known within the INS as ‘Operation Wetback III’.   You might be curious at this point as to what Operation Wetback I and II were.   Operation Wetback I, was instigated by President Herbert Hoover, who initiated a similar, successful dragnet of Illegals for precisely the same set of reasons.   Needless to say, the number of unemployed American citizens during the early years of the Great Depression, caused a clamor to rid the United States of foreign laborers taking jobs and degrading the wage standards (what little there were).

Hoover appointed his Labor Secretary, William N. Doak, to organize massive sweeps utilizing the resources of the INS.   It was enormously effective.   The numbers of illegals, (roughly 400,000), that were removed consisted of a combination of self deportation, voluntary repatriation and enforcement procedures.   Not all of the illegals that were relocated back to their mother countries (mostly Mexico) were shooshed by the Feds.   Local and County officials such as those in Los Angeles, took a hand in the game and added to the results as well.

Operation Wetback II, had no direct bearing on our domestic situation.   This was a repatriation of Europeans, mainly Germans and Italians that had wound up in refugee camps following WWII.  However, there were efforts undertaken by the INS during Truman’s administration that cumulatively resulted in the deportations of approximately 3.4 Million illegals – some of which read the writing on the wall and skedaddled on their own.

Operation Wetback III, under General Swing, netted by various estimates between 2.1 and 3 Million illegals.   There is some disagreement on the exact numbers, because some researchers base their numbers literally on INS records, which may provide a limited and inconclusive picture.  Some left-leaning ‘Fact Checking’ websites make a big issue of debunking positive reports about Operation Wetback in each of these administrations, but when you look over the details, you find that they simply don’t deliver the goods.  Liberals have a great deal invested in characterizing Operation Wetback in much the same way as other historical revisionists handle the Nazi Holocaust.  In the case of Operation Wetback, the documented success, albeit on a somewhat smaller scale (we had a much smaller population in 1954) – puts paid to the false assertions that deporting illegals is impractical and practically impossible.  It ain’t necessarily so.

But as in all of the other operations, many simply found the situation to be to hot for them and preferred to get a jump on the process themselves.   This has been the case recently in places like Arizona – at least until the Obama Justice Department sued Arizona to nullify the law enacted to authorize law enforcement to perform detentions of those in violation of immigration law.

Various groups after World War II, opposed any form of temporary labor in the United States.   Associations such as the American G.I. Forum, for instance, had little or no sympathy for the man who crossed the border illegally.   Texas was the most impacted by migrant workers crossing the border illegally and depressing the labor market for American residents.

Apparently the Texas State Federation of Labor supported the G.I. Forum’s position also.   Eventually the two organizations co produced a study entitled What Price Wetbacks?, which concluded that illegal aliens in United States agriculture damaged the health of the American people, that illegals displaced American workers, that they harmed the retailers of McAllen, and that the open-border policy of the American government posed a threat to the security of the United States.

As is always the case, when the beneficiaries of illegal labor join hands with the proponents of open borders, there is a organized outcry of unfairness and discrimination.   Such efforts waged by a powerful minority of special interests in Washington were successful in prodding Congress to defund the efforts of Eisenhower to complete the progress that had initially been achieved.   It should come as no surprise that Senator Lyndon Baines Johnson of Texas was among the leading forces in Congress to terminate the program.

We later wound up with him as President and we know what a horrendous mess he made of everything he touched, including the Vietnam War, the creation of the ‘Great Society’ and the ‘War on Poverty’.   Some war.   Looks like the taxpayers lost that one and are paying for it to this very day.   What a legacy.

Those veterans of the ‘Operation Wetback’ sweeps of the Eisenhower era, say that they have no doubt whatsoever that if the political will existed in Washington, the successes of ‘Operation Wetback’ could be replicated in our day and age, to the betterment of America and the respect of the rule of law.

Liberal myths die hard.

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