822:00 Revolutions/73: Telegram

The Minister in Ecuador (Gonzalez) to the Secretary of State

47. Department’s telegram No. 22, October 1, 6 p.m. It was generally recognized that the elections would have decided nothing; also that the desired revision of the constitution could be effected only under a military dictatorship. However, respect for the constitution was so strongly instilled that the armed forces were unable to take the initiative therefore Pons with the concurrence of the liberals and high Army officers conceived the astute move of accepting the resignation of his Cabinet, resigning himself and leaving the Presidency vacant without constitutional succession. Faced with a fait accompli the armed forces assumed the supreme power and delegated it to Paez. In abolishing the 1929 Constitution the present regime ipso facto dispelled any semblance of constitutionality.

I have just received an official communication from Chiriboga who has been reappointed Minister for Foreign Affairs. He states that by virtue of the “political military movement of September 26th” the Pons government ceased and the Army assumed the supreme power delegating it to Paez. After listing the Cabinet he adds that

“the absolutely pacific change effected, the tranquillity enjoyed by the country from the first moment, the general satisfaction felt by the people are proofs that the present state of affairs has the primary condition of the desire of the people as well as that the movement of the 26th has had for its objective, impelled by public opinion, to proceed quickly with the revision of the political constitution of Ecuador. The present government therefore finds itself firmly constituted.

In informing Your Excellency of this matter I have the honor to state that my Government fervently desires to continue cultivating [Page 536]the good relations of friendship which until now it has maintained with the Government of the noble nation which Your Excellency so worthily represents.”

Paez has decided that his government will be in line with the liberal radical platform. Details of his social program have not yet been revealed but it is now indicated that they will not be drastic.

The present administration apparently is firmly established. Stability will depend upon opposition of the Conservatives which is negligible for the moment. However, it can be easily intensified to the point of endangering stability, (1), if not accorded an appropriate voice in the revision of the constitution and, (2), if the measures taken are inimical to their interests. My colleagues consider that the regime is fairly stable but the Peruvian and Colombian Ministers have not yet recommended recognition.

Gonzalez