814.24/148: Telegram

The Minister in Guatemala ( Des Fortes ) to the Secretary of State

27. The Minister for Foreign Affairs1 has just informed me that President Ubico had requested him to approach me confidentially regarding the possibility of securing for Guatemala arms and military equipment under the Lease-Lend plan. The President proposes for consideration the loan from the United States Government of the materials included in the list which was prepared by Generals Sierra and Mendoza last June while in Washington.

President Ubico said, “If we are at war with the aggressor powers, it is to cooperate with the United States in its defense, therefore it seems only equitable and just that in view of the Lease-Lend Act,2 the United States Government should lend Guatemala what she needs to arm herself so she may be ready for that defense. Upon the end of the war, in the most honorable way, whatever has been received by Guatemala as a loan will be returned to the United States Government and the Guatemalan Government would pay for whatever it has taken over for its own use or which has been damaged in any way”.

Urgent reply requested.

Des Portes
  1. Carlos Salazar.
  2. Approved March 11, 1941; 55 Stat. 31.