48. Editorial Note

In early September 1953 CIA officers met with the man known to be Castillo Armas’ main ally inside of Guatemala City. The information received by the CIA in New York on September 6–7 differed from the assessment of internal support described in Document 47. According to the source, there already were 53,000 anti-Communist Guatemalans organized in cells of 315 men inside the country, approximately 8,000 supporters within 1 hour of the capital, and two functional intelligence nets. Other assets listed by the source included five clandestine radio stations and ample supplies for the manufacture of bombs. He noted, however: “Capture of Guatemala City at the outset of the movement will require the immobilization or assassination of the key civilian members of the Government as well as immobilization of a majority of the officers.”

At the conclusion of the meeting, the source agreed that his organization would prepare a detailed plan and timetable while the CIA would provide 8–10 tons of arms for training purposes. (Memorandum for the Record, September 8; Central Intelligence Agency, Job 79–01025A, Box 151, Folder 7)