818.00/1331: Telegram

The Minister in Costa Rica (Eberhardt) to the Secretary of State

15. Sniping and street fighting in the vicinity of the barracks and the Legation continued during the night where two Castristas and one Ricardista are known to have been killed. Public indignation is gradually arising against the government’s dilatory attitude which is interpreted by some as a combination with the Castristas to defeat Ricardo Jiménez. There is a growing sentiment against President Gonzales and some of the best citizens are talking seriously of compelling him to step down, they to assume the responsibility for orderly government till May 8th.

There are said to be some 5,000 men at the call of the Government with arms for most if not all and yet no active operations have been commenced. With no food, organization, or consecutive directions Government volunteers are deserting. I am reliably informed unrest due to the disgust at President’s dilatory tactics giving encouragement to vandalistic and communistic elements in provinces. For the third time in as many days the President’s secretary has advised me that a concerted attack on the Castristas will be undertaken in a few hours. He states today that they expect to use heavy artillery and promises to advise me well in advance. Since the Legation is directly in line of fire I may send servants and others from the premises.

Real possibility exists that Minister of War Quirós and President Gonzales are in sympathy with Castro Quesada, and hence delaying his suppression so that he may make a satisfactory compromise. I am telling President that the Government must take steps at once to restore order. Cruisers off Limon and Puntarenas might have salutary effect.