837.00/4617: Telegram

The Personal Representative of the President (Caffery) to the Acting Secretary of State

21. My telegram No. 20, January 15, 3 a.m. Grau last night verbally expressed his willingness to resign. Officers junta adjourned in early hours of the morning but reassembled at 6 a.m. and is still in session. Batista before adjournment still preferred Mendieta but it developed during the meeting that he would probably meet with [Page 101] armed opposition from the Navy and extreme left if he attempted to put him into office. Notwithstanding that, Batista would probably be prepared to go ahead with Mendieta if I recommend it but I do not feel that I can do so partly because Mendieta desires definite previous assurance from us which we cannot give.

Guiteras11 is of course a strong candidate.

An attempt has been in the making since yesterday to nominate Hevia12 as Provisional President with strong Mendieta group participation in his Cabinet and support of Cuban hacienda owners.

  1. Dr. Antonio Guiteras, Secretary of the Interior in the government of President Grau San Martin.
  2. Carlos Hevia, Secretary of Agriculture in the government of President Grau San Martin.