Punish worst of MS-13 in US

MS-13 is one of the most vicious criminal organizations in history. All one needs to know about MS-13 is that its preferred method of killing is to use machetes, axes and knives to hack victims apart slowly. Not infrequently, the group’s targets are children.

Last week, President Donald Trump pledged a nationwide crackdown on MS-13. Reaction from reasonable people was that decisive action against the thugs is long overdue.

But there were critics, some actually suggesting Trump’s proposal somehow is racist, an excuse to target immigrants.

MS-13 originated in El Salvador, where it remains a blight. The organization spread here when its leaders sensed an opportunity to victimize other immigrants from Central and South America.

In fact, most of those harmed by MS-13 appear to be immigrants. Those labeling Trump’s comments as racist and anti-immigrant, then, are aiding and abetting murderers who harm the very people the critics claim to be defending.

In some ways, MS-13 is worse than Islamic terrorist groups. MS-13’s motives have nothing to do with ideology, only with making profits by using terror to prey on others.

So a concerted, focused crackdown on the criminal gang is both justified and important. Again, the immigrant community — legal or not — deserves protection from MS-13.

Trump should amend one part of his plan, however. Last week, he vowed to find, arrest and deport MS-13 members.

Sending them back home would merely increase the misery of Salvadorans, however. Instead, the worst ought to be punished for their crimes –severely — right here in the United States.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)