439. Telegram From the Embassy in Cuba to the Department of State 1

1772. Deptel 1059.2 After reading President’s statement Brazilian Ambassador said he considered it very good and had only one fault to find, which however he considered fairly serious. In last sentence he believes words “government and” should be inserted after “ability of the Cuban” since otherwise he feels this statement will be resented as attempt to drive wedge between government and people and will undo the good which otherwise results from the statement. He urges if possible clarification or correction be issued.

Leitao da Cunha liked reference in fifth point to recourse to appropriate international procedures. He said there is no danger of losing respect his country and Latin America if we keep our differences with Cuba on a lofty plane, avoiding every form of bilateral pressure, even such as denying to Cuba our premium price for sugar which he feels we would be justified in doing. Such measures he is convinced would be regarded in many Latin American countries as economic reprisal or aggression, regardless of merits of case. He strongly suggests we utilize only international procedures, beginning with conciliation mechanism within OAS and proceeding to International Court if necessary.

Brazilian Ambassador likened Cuban attitude toward US to spite of a child against parent or teacher which could lead him even to destroying his prized possessions. This theory was further supported he believed by observation that present GOC leaders, however naturally intelligent, are immature, inexperienced and like children playing with fire arms. Situation he feels calls for psychoanalytical approach.

Leitao da Cunha offered to be as helpful as possible but said he had little contact with leaders. “They don’t want any advice.” He felt it was going to help situation for GOC to miss Ambassador Bonsal for a little while.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 611.37/1–2660. Confidential; Niact.
  2. Document 437.