815.24/14: Telegram

The Chargé in Honduras (Dennis) to the Secretary of State

6. Department’s telegram January 10, 4 p.m. I have made communication as directed to the Provisional President. The President-elect is not expected at Tegucigalpa before the 20th.

The Provisional President informed me today that the army contemplated will not exceed 2,000; that 3,000 rifles are desired in order to provide a reserve; that the plans for organization are ready and will be furnished the Legation in the near future; that they comprise a military school for the training of officers who will be assigned districts; that the governing idea is maintenance of order in the interior and protection of long frontiers from bandit raids of recent occurrence; the Honduranean Government is disposed to follow article 2 in the matter and that he hopes the treaties will soon be ratified by the Honduranean Congress; the question of foreign instructors has not been given consideration and that he could not express any opinion thereupon before consulting with the Cabinet.

[Paraphrase.] My opinion is that 10 machine guns and 2,000 rifles are sufficient for the internal police and protection. However, the amounts requested seem [inadequate] if organized revolutionary incursions by emigrados at present in Guatemala and Nicaragua are to be considered as an imminent danger. But this Legation is not in a position to discuss this possibility advisedly. My impression is that the authorities of Honduras are not unduly anxious over an immediate revolution but they believe in adequate preparedness against such an event.

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As soon as the Legation receives further information, it will transmit it to the Department. [End paraphrase.]