‘Land Of The Free’: World Leader Draws On American Nostalgia To Attract Immigrants, Slams US Crime, Drug Crises

(Photo by Marvin RECINOS / AFP) (Photo by MARVIN RECINOS/AFP via Getty Images)

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The president of El Salvador is inviting people to move to his country, touting it as the “new land of the free” following his year-long crackdown on gangs, drugs and violence.

El Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele took to social media March 26, encouraging families seeking a better life to move to his Central American country. The vintage-style ad depicted a traditional, nuclear multi-generational family gathered around a 1950’s era television set, enjoying a quiet evening at home, listing all the benefits El Salvador has to offer.

“No shootings. No lootings. No fentanyl crisis. Lowest crime rate in the Americas,” the ad listed as the top reasons to relocate. In addition, those moving from the United States would not have to worry about currency conversions as El Salvador uses the U.S. dollar in circulation. In addition, the Central American country offers “great coffee, great weather, and great beaches.” (RELATED: El Salvador Becomes First Country To Use Bitcoin As National Currency)

His invitation comes as El Salvador’s congress approved an extension of emergency powers, allowing police in the country to round up suspected gang members and imprison them, according to News Nation Now. Though Bukele has been criticized by human-rights organizations for violating the civil rights of El Salvadoran citizens, the Central American president has dismissed those concerns, likening his stance on stamping out gang violence to Germany stamping out Nazism after World War II.

“Here in El Salvador…we never had a Nazi problem, but we did have a gang problem. It’s a similar issue,” Bukele explained because they are “interwoven in Salvadoran society.

Upon the opening of a massive correctional facility, designed to house 40,000 inmates, Bukele proudly expressed, “El Salvador has managed to go from being the world’s most dangerous country, to the safest country in the Americas. How did we do it? By putting criminals in jail. Is there space? There is now.”

Human rights advocates have decried the facility and the mass arrests, pointing out that most of the 65,000 taken into custody since the crackdown began are still awaiting formal charges and a trial. Public opinion in El Salvador, however, shows that 91% of El Salvadoran citizens approve of the heavy-handed action of the “world’s coolest dictator,” as Bukele cheekily refers to himself.

On the one-year anniversary of his initial crackdown in March 2022, Bukele announced they had closed the day with 0 homicides. “We will continue working for the safety of Salvadorans,” the president promised even if “NGO’s” cry “human rights.”