File No. 4478/1.
Minister Beaupré to the Secretary of State .
Buenos Aires , February 8, 1907 .
Sir: I have the honor herewith to confirm my telegram of to-day’s date, which should read as follows. (Supra.):
At about 3 o’clock of the morning of the 7th instant the revolutionists, headed by Col. Carlos D. Sarimento, of the regular army, attacked the principal government buildings of the town, the government house, police station, normal school, and prison, in which the government party, warned by rumors of the subversive movement, had fortined themselves. The normal school was burned to the ground and the police station was taken. At about 8 a.m. the govehnor (Señor Godoy) and his party surrendered and the revolutionists took possession of the government house and prison. In an act signed by the leaders of the revolution the liberty and safety of the government party was guaranteed; this act reads as follows in translation:
San Juan, February 7, 1907.
After four hours of combat between the revolutionary forces and those of the government of the province, and in the desire of avoiding the continuance of the shedding of blood and not having the means for the curing of the [Page 17] wounded, the government forces turn over to the revolutionary junta the police stations and the guard of the prison with their respective armaments.
The governor, his ministers, the intendent of police, employees, and all the citizens that have accompanied him in his defense retire in full enjoyment of their liberty and guarantee of their lives, which the revolutionary junta assures to them on parole of honor.
The revolutionists were thus in entire control and proceeded at once in exercise of the functions of government usurped to appoint officers of a provisional government, such as chief of police, chief of the prison guard, etc.
The casualties of the revolution are 12 killed and 25 wounded.
News of the overthrow of the government of the province of San Juan having reached the capital, Dr. Benito Villaneuva, provisional president of the senate, in exercise of the executive power (as reported in my No. 488 of the 7th instant), called a meeting of the cabinet at 10.30 a.m. After nearly three hours of deliberation it was decided that the federal government should exercise the authority accorded to it in articles 5 and 6 of the national constitution and intervene. Accordingly, a decree to that effect was issued, which reads as follows in translation:
Buenos Aires, February 7, 1907.
In view of the events that have to-day occurred in the province of San Juan and in accordance with the provisions of articles 5 and 6 of the national constitution, the provisional president of the senate, in exercise of the executive power, in general cabinet meeting, decrees:
- Article I. Intervention in the province of San Juan is declared.
- Art. II. Lieut. Col. Ramón Gonzáles, chief of the Fourth Battalion of Infantry, is appointed provisional chief of police of the intervention.
- Art. III. Until the interventor that is to be appointed shall proceed to the province, the minister of the interior shall give to said chief of police the necessary instructions.
- Art. IV. The present decree shall be reported to Congress at its next session.
Let it be communicated, etc.
At 3 p.m. of the same day Colonel González reported by telegraph that he had taken charge as chief of police and that the city was quiet and 100 soldiers of the Second Regiment of Cavalry of the regular army were transferred to San Juan and put at his disposal by the minister of war.
It was decided to appoint interventor Dr. Cornelio Gacituá, justice of the supreme court, and this was done by another executive decree on the evening of the same day after communicating with him by telegraph at Cordoba.
As to the occasion of this movement La Nacion of to-day says, in its report of the affairs:
These events have been preparing for many months. The government of Senior Godoy has for two years administered the province according to the methods that so many times have brought upon the oligarchies of the interior the condemnatory judgment of public opinion. Without respect for the letter or the spirit of the law, the overthrown administration systematically excluded from the government popular representation, made access to the polls impossible, falsified the character of the legislative power, and repressed all the natural manifestations of civic life.
An editorial in the same edition of La Nacion, while lamenting the fact of resort to the dishonoring recourse of conspiracy and revolution, says:
We would commit an injustice if we were to cast upon the revolutionists of San Juan the full responsibility for the events that have just taken place. [Page 18] More culpable than the promoters of the movement is the deposed government, which provoked it by a narrow and exclusive policy, placing the opposition party in the dilemma of accepting a shameful submission or of indicating by force their abused rights. * * * No one can doubt that the revolution is the fruit of the abuses committed by the official circle in the autocratic exercise of its authority in the face of the keen resistance of the spirit of the people.
Some months ago the Government discovered a revolutionary conspiracy in the city of San Juan. Of this movement the same Colonel Sarmiento, above mentioned, was the leader and he was arrested. His followers, the opposition, thereupon formally applied to the National Congress asking for intervention. This request was discussed in Congress and finally laid on the table. This deprived the people of San Juan of the one alternative that offered for the adjustment of the prevailing difficulties, with the result that they have now availed themselves of the other more unfortunate alternative.
I am, etc.,