The Chargé in Guatemala (Cabot) to the Secretary of State
[Received 10 p.m.]
99. The President has called Colonel Glass61 in and has expressed his surprise and perturbation at the long delay in giving any concrete military assistance to Guatemala. He referred particularly to the repeated requests for arms which he has made and which have never been answered. He also referred to the desirability of sending airplanes to be permanently stationed at Guatemala City the officers of which might give instruction to Guatemalan flying officers.
I have also received similar messages from the President in the last few days but in view of the President’s talk with Glass, I feel the matter is more urgent than I had originally believed.
I have discussed the matter with Glass and June.62 We agreed on the danger of sending any considerable amount of arms to Guatemala; on the other hand, we agree with the President’s comment that it is useless to send military instructors as recommended in the recent staff talks unless the instructors bring with them the necessary equipment to give instruction. Moreover we all feel that it would be highly desirable to have a few obsolescent combat airplanes permanently or semi-permanently stationed in this country and to authorize the officers to give instructions to Guatemalan officers. It would seem that such a move made at the direct request of the Guatemalan Government could not be misinterpreted either locally or elsewhere, would be concrete evidence of the United States’ intention to protect this region and would be of definite service in keeping Guatemala in line in the event of subversive movements or hostilities involving the United States.