44. Memorandum From the Chief of the Western Hemisphere Division, Central Intelligence Agency (King) to the Deputy Director for Plans of the Central Intelligence Agency (Wisner)1


  • Instructions for DD/P re Guatemala
  • Meeting of 27 August 1953


  • Mr. Wisner, Mr. Barnes, Colonel King
Mr. Peurifoy will be appointed Ambassador to Guatemala. There will be a briefing for him in Mr. Wisner’s office Tuesday, 1 September, at 11 a.m.
General Smith has clarified the roles of Ray Leddy and Dick Berry. Leddy will be the lead man in State and will keep General Smith informed as we progress. Berry will be handled with loose harness.
At the PSB luncheon of 26 August the following conclusion was reached. Guatemala will have number one priority. It was confirmed at the luncheon that we will handle Guatemala in our chain of command. Others will play a supporting role only, to the extent we see fit.
General Smith told General Cabell that Mr. Tom Mann had briefed him on the meeting with us in apartment of J.C. King and made the following points, with which General Smith agreed:
There should be reduced outside participation—this referring particularly to [less than 1 line of source text not declassified]. All should be informed only on a strictly need-to-know basis.
Mr. Mann thought the atmosphere of the meeting showed too much concern on our part with the security angle. General Smith expressed the opinion to General Cabell that we should not be so worried and should not show too much concern. Mr. Wisner, however, emphasized to Colonel King that this does not mean any relaxation in measures to be taken to protect the security of the operation and the U.S. role in it.
Future papers will not refer to “diplomatic preparation”, but will use the expression “other actions in support of CIA action”.
Mr. Wisner emphasized to Colonel King that Guatemala is now number one priority in the Agency, and that Colonel King is to be responsible for getting the show on the road.
J.C. King2
  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Job 79–01025A, Box 76, Folder 2. Secret; Eyes Only.
  2. Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.