852.00/2751: Telegram

The Third Secretary of Embassy in Spain (Wendelin) to the Secretary of State

X–80. Department’s telegram of August 20, 9 p.m.98 Assertion that the Spanish Government has practically lost control of the situation at Madrid and that Communists and Anarchists are in command is too strong and is likewise contradictory. Communists and Socialists are supporting Government which in my opinion is stronger now than 2 weeks ago. Government is making serious effort to impose [Page 680] discipline [omission?] militia forces with considerable apparent success. All troops, guard forces and police now wear Republican arm bands. Socialist and Communist leaders as well as Government undoubtedly fear possible attempt by Anarchists to seize power but latter are in minority here and such attempt unlikely. However, Anarchists are systematically searching city for persons known or believed to be Fascists or Monarchists and many such people are being shot daily. Government is trying to put a stop to these activities but hesitates to adopt stringent measures for fear of open break with Anarchists. This is the most serious aspect of local Government situation but does not yet justify assertion that Anarchists now control Government.

Danish, Venezuelan and Colombian Ministers and Finnish Chargé d’Affaires have left Madrid. Mexican and Peruvian representatives have announced that they will not leave under any circumstances. Mexican Ambassador and family returning to Madrid probably tomorrow. Conflicting attitudes in Diplomatic Corps clearly reflects political viewpoints of their respective Governments.

  1. Not printed; this telegram passed on to the Embassy a report received from Brussels (852.00/2709).