Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952–1954, Guatemala
62. Stage One Report Prepared in the Central Intelligence Agency1
FRIENDLY ASSETS AND POTENTIAL
[5-1/2 pages of source text not declassified]
[1-1/2 pages of source text not declassified]
Synopsis of Favorable Factors:
- Subject’s military record reflects he is an above the average officer who has had sufficient ability to inspire confidence of his exile military associates so that they will follow him in an eventual military attack against the current Guatemalan government.
- Subject is anti-Communist, pro-United States, and apparently has no excessively militaristic or dictatorial ambitions.
- Subject possesses an inadequately organized and trained FI apparatus, which, however, could be used as a basis for mounting larger FI operations against the current Guatemalan regime.
- Subject’s PP apparatus, although now relatively ineffective, can serve as framework for a larger PP effort against the current Guatemalan regime.
- Subject has the confidence and support of the Honduran Government, which provides the movement with an FI and PP Headquarters and distribution base.
- Subject seems prepared to cooperate with PBSUCCESS officials. He indicated readiness to take fullest advantage of future CIA aid and assistance.
Synopsis of Unfavorable Factors:
- No method is now available to determine effectiveness of Subject’s PP organization.
- No method is now available to determine the exact extent and effectiveness of Subject’s FI nets or informants.
- Because of lack of experience and necessity, security practices of Subject’s group need to be tightened up to control any possible Communist infiltration.
- [2 lines of source text not declassified] His same contacts may resent accounting for funds paid for carrying out future PP or FI assignments.
- Subject lacks experience to organize, direct, and coordinate an operation of the magnitude now planned.
- The general popularity of Subject in Guatemala and the actual number of his hard-core supporters is uncertain. In 1950, Subject’s attempted [Page 129]coup was foiled by a Communist penetration. According to [name not declassified], on three later efforts in 1952–53, Subject promised success for his movement but was unable to launch a successful coup against the government because of lack of support within the country.
- Use of Subject must proceed without a CIA operational clearance.
- Subject has little military field experience and naturally no unconventional warfare experience.
- No control can be exercised over Subject at the present time.
- Biography—See Attachment A.
Personality—Subject, primarily a military leader, commands respect and discipline from his followers by his sincere and reasonable manner. Subject does not possess a hard, driving, fiery personality, but his orders are obeyed without question, despite his quiet and reserved attitude. His associates in Honduras clearly indicate that Subject is the absolute leader. He, however, is flexible in considering problems and has demonstrated an ability to compromise.
Subject appears to be deliberate in his manner of thinking and speaking. He is not one who would be considered to commit rash acts or launch into a military operation without being fully prepared.
Subject is of average physical appearance, and in contrast to certain Latin American military officials, is meticulous in his dress and personal habits.
- Ideology—Subject is regarded as being a sincere anti-Communist and pro-United States. He abandoned a promising military career in 1949 to protest against the Communist influence in the Arevalo Government. He constantly has remained active in plotting against the Communist dominated Guatemalan Governments. No information exists regarding his particular feelings as to new social reforms or methods of governing a Guatemalan administration which he might head.
- Motivation—No information is available to indicate specifically what Subject’s primary motivations are. From the record it is believed his dislike of Communism in the Guatemalan Government prompted his activities against Arevalo, but subsequent events which included the payment of large sums to him for his group’s activities, undoubtedly must be considered. In conversations, undesirable personal ambition and motives of financial gain were not revealed.
Financial—No information is available regarding source of Subject’s income, other than amounts which are being paid him by CIA. There is no information to indicate whether he possesses property or securities inside or outside Guatemala. Subject is not a member of a wealthy Guatemalan family.[Page 130]
Subject has only made demands from CIA to sustain his organization and not for his personal reimbursement. A request has been made for the accounting of money paid to him by CIA. [2-1/2 lines of source text not declassified]
- Area Background—Has lived in Central America, with brief exceptions of visits to United States and exile periods in Colombia and Honduras. Subject is currently residing in Honduras.
- Control—No control now exists over Subject. Possibly in the future, financial control can be exerted, since he is responsible for funding various PP and FI organizations under his control.
Security—A covert name check has been initiated on Subject, but no results have been received at current date. According to instructions from the DCI this project is authorized to proceed without compliance with normal operational procedures because of the urgency and sensitivity of the PBSUCCESS operation.
Subject personally is discreet and security conscious. However, lacking formal security training and adequate resources, certain operating practices have not been sufficiently secure. He has indicated willingness to initiate new methods which will tighten up the security of his operations.
His immediate family, who live with him, are cognizant of many of his operational undertakings.
The physical security of his Honduras Headquarters is considered adequate.
Contacts—No specific information is available regarding Subject’s military or political contacts who could assure him military support in a revolutionary effort.
Subject has stated he has general support in Guatemala, but to date has not supplied the details of this claimed support. He is reputed to be aided by approximately 200 Guatemalan exiles.
The Honduran Government has permitted Subject to organize his group in Honduras. The nature of the personal and political relationship between [name not declassified] and Subject is confused.
Political Ability—Subject has held no political offices and has not been active in any Guatemalan political party. No information is available regarding the attitudes of prominent anti-Government political parties toward him. Subject claims general support, particularly among the anti-Communist University students.
No information is available regarding a statement of his political ambitions for the future. His precise political ambitions are not known.
- PP Ability—There is no information that Subject has had PP experience, although currently his propaganda groups do coordinate their activities with his Headquarters. Subject has indicated, however, he expects to [Page 131]turn this particular activity over to a qualified assistant, who possesses adequate training and background. He has written an anti-Communist book, Yo Acuso, of doubtful PP value.
- Military Ability—Subject’s military record, (see Attachment A), indicates a rapid rise. Although reasons for this advancement are not spelled out, Subject’s capacity for command must be considered as a responsible factor. No information exists regarding the opinion which other Guatemalan officers have for Subject. There is no information available regarding U.S. military officials’ opinion of Subject’s military judgment and command capacity.
Intelligence Ability—There is no information that Subject has worked with any intelligence service, except CIA. He is, however, acquainted with FI procedures as a result of his anti-government activities while in exile. He is in contact with numerous sources in Guatemala [and] with Central American Military Attachés stationed in Honduras.
Subject admits lack of background in conducting well-organized FI activities, but is convinced of their importance and is willing to cooperate with CIA representatives in improving his FI nets.
- Replacement—Subject appears to be far above the level of his staff assistants, none of whom apparently are being considered as an eventual replacement for RUFUS.
Full Name: RUFUS
Alias: Julio Restrepo—pseudonym
Date and Place of Birth: 1914 in Guatemala
Present Citizenship: Guatemalan
Relatives and friends in the United States: Peter Woolson, San Antonio, Texas
Brother: Julio Federico Paiz, brother-in-law also known as Federico Paiz Herrara, leader of anti-Communist student group.
Political affiliations: An Aranista. Opposed to the moral corruption of the Arbenz regime. At present, anti-Communistic.
Travel outside Guatemala: On 8 November 1951, left Bogota, Colombia for Panama. Reportedly made a trip through the Central American Republics, thence to the U.S. and in January, 1952, reported to be either in Mexico or Salvador.
- Six years of primary school
- Two years Industrial Technical School of Guatemala
- Three years basic military studies at the Military Academy
- Six mos. specialized training in Artillery at the Military Academy
- One year basic course in School of Applied Tactics, Guatemala
- Three months at General Staff course (Ground), Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas
- Four and a half mos., Service Course at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
- Entered Military Academy in 1933 and graduated in 1936
- Captain in June, 1939
- Major in June, 1944
- Lt. Colonel in ?
- Arrested on 27 August 1949 for failure to send troops to the capital on 18 July
- Entered Military Academy in June, 1933 and graduated in June, 1936
- Captain in June, 1939
- Major in June, 1944
- Lt. Colonel in?
- Commander of Artillery Unit, Ft. Matamoros, 1936–1937
- Instructor of Artillery, Ft. Matamoros, 1937–1942
- Chief of Artillery of the Atlantic Sector, 1942–1944
- First Chief of Expeditionary Force of the Defense of the Atlantic Sector, July 1944
- Instructor of Artillery, Ft. San Jose, Sept–Oct 1944
- Chief, G–4 Section, General Staff, Oct 1944–June 1945
- Chief, G–3 Section, General Staff, June–Nov 1945
- Sub–Director of Military Academy, Nov 1947–March 1947
- Professor of Tactics, Second Course, Military Academy, May 1946–March 1947
- Director of Military Academy, March 1947 until early 1949
- Transferred to Chief of Garrison at Mazatenango, a secondary post
- Detailed to visit USMA in September 1947
- Arrested August 1949 by government police
- In November 1950 led an armed attack on the Military Base in Guatemala City, wounded and imprisoned
- On 11 June 1951 escaped from National Prison and granted safe conduct to El Salvador
Publications: Wrote a book Yo Acuso in 1951
Court Record: Arrested by Guatemalan Government in 1953 for political activities
- Height—5 feet, 5 inches
- Eyes—Dark brown
- Weight—135 lbs.
- Source: Central Intelligence Agency, Job 79–01025A, Box 145, Folder 3. Top Secret; Eyes Only. Part II, “KUFIRE,” Part III, “KUGOWN,” Part IV, “KUHOOK,” and Part V, “KUCLUB” are not printed.↩