Editorial Note

On August 5, S. Walter Washington, First Secretary of Embassy at Madrid, transmitted a lengthy despatch (No. 415) on the subject of Franco’s political situation in the summer of 1949. Mr. Washington reviewed the economic and political scene in Spain and treated the Army, the Church, the Falange, and various exile groups in their relations with Franco. The despatch concludes:

“In summary, Franco’s internal position seems to be as secure as it has ever been at any time during his regime and he gives every indication of intending to remain there until he dies. He is showing a will to resist economic pressures on his political set-up. Totalitarian controls are fundamental in his organization and probably seem to him even more essential as the economy deteriorates. His attitude toward foreign countries and foreign critics is one of blind faith in the infallibility of his policies. On the positive side of his foreign policy he is concerned primarily with saving the country economically and secondarily with satisfying his pride by eliminating the ban on the exchange of Ambassadors.” (852.00/8–549)