328. Memorandum From Julian P. Fromer of the Office of Middle American Affairs to the Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs (Rubottom)1


  • U.S. Military Assistance to Dominican Republic Through Fiscal Year 1957

Under the terms of the Bilateral Military Assistance Agreement signed by the United States and the Dominican Republic on March 6, 1953,2 the Dominican Republic agreed to prepare and maintain one fighter squadron of aircraft and ten naval vessels for hemispheric purposes (force objectives, or force bases). The Dominican Republic [Page 917] provided all the vessels and most of the aircraft for the units. Under the grant military aid program the United States has programmed for the Dominican Republic from the initiation of the program through fiscal 1957, a total of $4,117,000 of which $3,729,000 has been delivered.3 A large part of this amount has gone for spare parts, maintenance equipment, training ammunition and training. Under the program, the ten naval vessels furnished by the Dominican Republic were modified to make them more effective for anti-submarine warfare purposes and four T–33 trainer jet aircraft were furnished to the Dominican Republic under the Grant Aid Program. Virtually no heavy equipment was furnished. Vampire jet fighters and Gloucester Meteor bombers bought from Great Britain by the Dominican Republic are not supported by the United States under the Grant Aid Program.

As of the end of calendar 1956, the Dominican Republic had purchased approximately one-half million dollars worth of military supplies and equipment from the United States. In this was included 25 F–47 aircraft used to prepare the squadron of fighters included in the force objectives, at a total cost of $341,047 (including spares and maintenance for one year).

The FY 1957 MAP program calls for modernizing fighter squadrons of obsolete aircraft included in the force bases of eight of the twelve countries with which we have MAP agreements with F 80C jets. The squadron of 13 aircraft planned for the Dominican Republic to replace its F–47’s will be offered on a reimbursable, cash sale basis.

Eight of the twelve countries comprising the Bilateral Military Assistance Agreement have received aircraft from the United States. Of these eight, the Dominican Republic is the only one that has purchased its aircraft (with the exception of the four trainers mentioned above) on a cash basis.

On November 5, 1956, the Dominican Government sent two notes to the Department requesting that six destroyers and twenty type PCS vessels be furnished to the Dominican Republic either on a grant basis or as reimbursable aid.4 The Department of Defense has indicated that the patrol craft are not available and that there is no military requirement in the Dominican Republic for six destroyers. The Dominican Republic will be informed that neither the patrol craft nor the destroyers can be made available at the present time.

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On December 7, 1956 a Naval Mission Agreement was signed with the Dominican Republic and U.S. naval personnel were assigned there to carry out the program.5 However, during April of this year, both the Embassy at Ciudad Trujillo and the Chief of the U.S. Naval Mission6 there recommended that the matériel program of the military assistance program be completely eliminated, that all procurement be stopped, and that no further funds or matériel be allocated to the Dominican Navy. It was also recommended that the role of the U.S. Naval Mission in the future be confined strictly to training activities. The reasons given for these recommendations were the inability of the Dominican Navy to maintain ships and material in a seaworthy condition, graft in purchasing and repair contracts and the assignment of trained personnel to duties which do not utilize their capabilities or training. Until such time as these defects were corrected, it was recommended that no further funds or materials be allocated to the Dominican Navy. The State Department has concurred with this position.

  1. Source: Department of State, Rubottom Files: Lot 59 D 573, Dominican Republic. Secret.
  2. For text, see 4 UST (pt. 1) 185.
  3. The phrase “of which $3,729,000” appears as a marginal notation on the source text.
  4. Copies of these notes are in Department of State, Central Files, 739.5–MSP/11–556.
  5. For text, see 7 UST (pt. 3) 3238.
  6. Commander Ralph C. McCoy.