Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s aggressive anti-immigration plan, he said, is modeled after President Dwight Eisenhower’s immigration plan. That plan was called “Operation Wetback,” which consisted of rounding up approximately 1 million Mexican immigrants and shipping them back across the border.
During Trump’s interview on 60 Minutes, he explained the plan.
“We are rounding them up in a very humane way, in a very nice way, and they’re going to be happy because they want to be legalized,” Trump said.
“He [Eisenhower] was a fair man,” Trump added. “He did this with over a million people. He did it, and it was actually very successfully done. But he did this in the 1950s . . . and a lot of people don’t know that.
Regarding “Operation Wetback,” the Washington Post reported that:
During the summer of 1955, this is where hundreds of thousands of Mexicans were “dumped” after being discovered as migrants who crossed the U.S.-Mexico border illegally. Unloaded from buses and trucks carrying several times their capacity, the deportees stumbled into the Mexicali streets with few possessions and no way of getting home.
This was strategic: the more obscure the destination within the Mexican interior, the less opportunities they would have to return to America. But the tactic also proved to be dangerous, as the migrants were left without resources to survive.
After one such round-up and transfer in July, 88 people died from heat stroke.
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