816.00 Revolutions/90: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Chargé in El Salvador (McCafferty)

17. After consultation with this Department the Navy Department has sent a radio message to the Commander of the Special Service Squadron stating that in view of his reports as to the improvement in the situation, and that the authorities have control over the Communistic outbreaks, the Navy Department desires, unless in his judgment later developments should make such a course inadvisable, that he withdraw his squadron from Salvadoran waters, sending such vessels as he may consider advisable to Corinto to await developments.

For your information we feel that the American ships should not be kept in Salvadoran waters longer than it is felt that there exists a serious danger to American lives which the authorities of the country are unable to control. In view of the statement in your 21, January 26, 7 p.m., that there had been at that time a noticeable improvement in the situation, and in view of the report received from the Commander of the Special Service Squadron today that the Salvadoran authorities have the situation well in hand, the Department feels it highly desirable that the American ships leave Salvadoran waters and proceed to Corinto to await developments, unless in fact later developments make this appear inadvisable to you and the Commander of the Special Service Squadron. It is assumed that Admiral Smith will communicate with you before replying to the instructions of the Navy Department above mentioned.