817.1051/70: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Nicaragua ( Thurston )

66. Your 95, May 15, 9 p.m., and 96, May 20, 7 p.m. After careful consideration the Department considers it advisable to comply with the Nicaraguan Government’s request for assistance in organizing the constabulary under the plan approved by the Nicaraguan Congress. The plan gives the American instructors full authority over the constabulary school and authority to inspect and make recommendations regarding the constabulary proper. The Department does not feel that it should insist on a greater degree of American control, as the ultimate control must necessarily rest with the Nicaraguan Government.

The Department is, therefore, asking the Secretary of the Navy to Instruct the commander of the Legation Guard, in consultation with you, to designate qualified officers of the Guard to assist in the organization of the constabulary pending the arrival of civilian instructors to be employed under contract. It desires that you should cooperate with Major Keyser in selecting well-qualified persons for this work which will, in the nature of things, be temporary and preliminary. The Department feels that it would be inadvisable to attempt any [Page 633] permanent organization of the school or the drafting of permanent regulations for its conduct until the arrival of the civilian instructors.

The Department will endeavor in the very near future to submit to the Nicaraguan Government the name of a well-qualified American with constabulary experience, who might be employed as chief instructor and who might be consulted regarding the appointment of his subordinates. Meanwhile, you may suggest that the Nicaraguan Legation at Washington be authorized to discuss with the person nominated all details regarding salary and terms of employment, which of course must be arranged by direct agreement.

The Department understands that the Navy can most conveniently withdraw the Legation Guard during the first part of August and it is therefore informing the Secretary of the Navy that there is no objection to the withdrawal of the Guard at that time. It appears that it would be very difficult to arrange transportation facilities earlier. The Department is asking the Navy to regard the plan for withdrawal as confidential until you consider it advisable to make a public announcement. …