137. Memorandum for the Record1


  • Meeting of 28 April 1954


  • Ambassador Peurifoy, Ambassador Willauer, Mr. Roosevelt, and Mr. [name not declassified]
[Page 269]
Ambassador Peurifoy recommended that both he and Ambassador Willauer be advised as to D-Day and that they be sounded out approximately 10 days before. Mr. [name not declassified] noted the difficulty of such change of views by cable and suggested that it might be more effective to accomplish the Ambassador’s objectives by sending down at that time an individual [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] to consult directly with the Ambassadors. Mr. [name not declassified] suggested that Mr. Leddy was best suited for such a task.
With regard to the problem of sabotaging Honduranian aircraft, Ambassador Willauer proposed [name not declassified] as a person qualified and experienced for the assignment. He suggested that [name not declassified] availability could be ascertained through [name not declassified]. Mr. [name not declassified] suggested that it was unfortunate that Col. Acosta himself was unable to do anything to stop the sabotage especially since he had a suspect in view and that this gave little basis for hoping that a lone American could do better. Mr. [name not declassified] raised the question as to whether RUFUS could not supply an individual. Ambassador Willauer observed that RUFUS is in direct contact with Acosta through Flores.
Both Ambassadors were questioned re view of emergency communication links available to them in their respective countries.
Ambassador Peurifoy proposed again leaflet drops and sabotage prior to D-Day. The necessity was pointed out that of decided security in such actions would be premature and precipitate an opportunity for our readiness to exploit it. Mr. [name not declassified] advised Ambassador Peurifoy that railroad and Polwel targets had been pin-pointed by LINCOLN following the Ambassador’s recommendation of last week.
Ambassador Willauer asked what are the alternates to [place not declassified].
Ambassador Peurifoy was briefed on the oral report received with regard to the reported entry by unknown persons of a letter addressed to him. He was advised that this oral report was not conducive and that the written report would be passed to him in due course. Mr. [name not declassified] proposed that we be permitted to consider for recommendation to Ambassador Peurifoy the use of this channel for deception purposes which would have as their primary objective the disinvolvement of the embassy from revolutions rumored to be afoot.
Ambassador Willauer proposed that gasoline tank trucks [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] could transport the arms to their points of disbursement. Messrs. Roosevelt and [name not declassified] raised a number of practical and security barriers to such a program.
With regard to PBSUCCESS in his area, Ambassador Willauer made the following observations: [Page 270]
That RUFUS’ safehouse is across the street from the Ambassador’s first secretary’s residence. He asked whether RUFUS’ location could be changed.
Operating difficulties in Tegucigalpa are most severe because of the size of the town and the small number of visiting Americans. Tourists’ cover is not adequate for our people; in any case that cover has been used up by them and moreover they are not behaving as tourists.
Mr. [name not declassified] is too young and inexperienced and while doing a fine job considering his capabilities, another senior individual should serve as [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] and contact to Willauer.
Ontrich while active and imaginative is not appropriate by age or background to deal with the president. The president had raised to Willauer some objection to dealing with Ontrich whom he described as a “boy”.
The need for the plane which he had proposed to the agency several months ago still exists. In addition to the craft he can supply a CAT pilot and crew chief. We could supply the co-pilot and radio operator through his gaining excellent cover and an opportunity to have frequent contact with him.
He requested arms for 20 persons including his four marines, and $5,000 for emergency use in connection with the safety of U.S. official persons.
With regard to the operation in his area, Ambassador Peurifoy requested the following:
A check on the status of the 3 additional people proposed for his embassy.
Heavy and light weapons for his staff in addition to the 30 revolvers already dispatched.
$10,000 into his hands for use in connection with protection of American lives.
Ambassador Willauer noted that Eric W. Watts, the Director of Jardine Mathisson and Company and Manager of their Japanese office will visit him beginning mid-May. Ambassador Willauer said this could probably not be put off. A May trip is requested.
With regard to the possibility that [name not declassified] may sever diplomatic relations over the Duarte affair, it was Ambassador Peurifoy’s view that it could not be undesirable at this time, although he had some months ago recommended against such a sever of relations. Mr. [name not declassified] pointed out that such an action by [name not declassified] would increase our own security because subsequent disturbances would probably in many people’s minds be credited to him.
[Page 271]

Mr. [name not declassified] raised again with Ambassador Peurifoy the delicate and complex problems involved in the post operational period, and repeated Mr. Wisner’s statements to the effect that department advice and assistance is needed. The Ambassador stated he would have recommendations forwarded to us. He noted that the main problem had to do with the difficulty security wise of making an assessment of RUFUS’ acceptability and viability in the area.

E. The above notes do not pretend to cover the entire discussion, the nature of which was not conducive to usual reporting.

[name not declassified]
  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Job 79–01025A, Box 151, Folder 1. Secret; Eyes Only. Drafted by [name not declassified] on April 29.