The Trump administration wanted to carry out “a blitz operation” to sweep up and arrest as many as 10,000 immigrant parents and children across 10 cities, The Washington Post reports, in a depraved display of state force designed to terrorize immigrant communities. In a shock to no one, among the loudest voices pushing the plan was White House aide and white supremacist Stephen Miller.
It was Miller who led the recent purge of top administration officials, including two who objected to the mass arrests, former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and former acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Ronald Vitiello. But don’t give those two any credit for being decent human beings. Nielsen and Vitiello reportedly objected to the mass arrests not because rounding up families, including U.S. citizen kids (remember, ICE is no stranger to targeting U.S. citizens), at gunpoint is shit straight out of Nazi Germany, but because of logistics and fear of “public outrage,” sources told The Washington Post.
“Vitiello and Nielsen’s pushback was a factor in President Trump’s decision to oust both officials—particularly Vitiello,” the Post reports. But while the plan did not go forward at that time, it’s unclear whether it’s dead. Then-Deputy ICE Director Matthew Albence joined Miller in supporting the mass arrests. Albence, who once compared migrant family jails to summer camp, is now serving as acting ICE director as the Senate considers Mark Morgan to permanently lead the agency.
There are plenty of topics that senators should make sure Morgan addresses if he gets far enough to testify before them for the job—for example, the Trump Organization’s ongoing exploitation of undocumented immigrant workers, including accusations of forced labor and verbal and physical abuse—but the question of where he stands on this white supremacist purge of immigrant parents and their children that could leave homes and classrooms and neighborhoods across the U.S. emptied should be among them.
“The level of depravity in terms of this administration has no bounds. It’s just insane,” Melissa Mark-Viverito, Latino Victory Project leader and former New York City Council speaker, said. “It’s inhumane. There is no sense of the understanding what the implications are for the greater society. There is no consideration that these families are making positive economic contributions to these cities. It is about fearmongering to the nth degree.”