834.00/9–1449: Telegram

The Chargé in Paraguay ( Randolph ) to the Secretary of State


316. Embtel 313, September 12 final paragraph.1

Examination factors considered applicable determine our attitude vis-à-vis present Paraguayan Government. Embassy lists following points:

Naming Chávez Provisional President done legally accordance article 58 Paraguayan constitution.
Resignation Molas cannot be considered “forced” in same sense as resignations González, Rolón.
Government has stated wishes continue friendly relations (see Embtel 315, September 132).
Chávez’ election popular practically all circles.
Cabinet continues all civilian, now composed only members predominant faction Colorados Party.
Little doubt Chávez Government will be friendly USA.
Chávez stated publicly press his government will respect treaties and international agreements.
Appears government full control throughout country although no statement made this respect.
Change effected peacefully and only after full discussion both civilian and military leaders (this perhaps most encouraging feature coup).

And in addition:

Numerous reports Colorados split many factions.
Conflicting reports real reason for coup.
Stableness Chávez Government not yet predictable.
Exact position intentions military not clear. Possibility this change preliminary to assumption control by military.
Question whether any foreign influence involved.

Weighing foregoing pros and cons, Embassy believe interests our government best served by continuing normal relations Paraguay after reasonable elapsed time. While Colorados may not be able prevent eventual entrance military into Paraguayan political scene, at least military not now dominating. Therefore Embassy believes our recognition [Page 763] this civilian government would tend strengthen democratic processes and help Democolos counterbalance military influence.3

  1. Telegram 313 not printed. The final paragraph commented that, despite popular acceptance of the accession of Federico Chávez to the presidency, doubts existed as to the ability of the splintered Democratic Colorados to resist a possible military take-over of the government, which raised the question of whether the recent coup had weakened rather than strengthened the Paraguayan political situation (834.00/9–1249).
  2. See footnote 4 to the letter dated September 13 from Mr. Tewksbury to Ambassador Warren, p. 760.
  3. Telegram 105, September 22, to Asunción, not printed, indicated that the Department was inclined to agree with the conclusions presented in telegram 316 from Asunción but was reviewing the situation prior to taking action on the continuance of relations with Paraguay (834.00/9–1949).