182. Notes of Meeting Between the Ambassador to Brazil (Gordon) and the Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs (Mann)1

Goulart—Childish and erratic. Apparently tries to keep an inch or two windward. Does not believe he is a commie. Very tolerant of commies because they are useful to him. More a follower of Vargas and Peron. Personable demagogue.

Possibility of a Goulart coup followed by an eventual commie takeover.

Brizola is Goulart’s brother-in-law, has a radio station, former Gov. of Rio Grande do Sul. Now a Congressman from Rio where he got a big vote. Demagogue more than an intellectual type. Has said he would like to be the Fidel Castro of Brazil. Schilling is his chief advisor who is a member of Communist Party.

Miguel Arrais, Gov. of Pernambuco. Wife is commie and he could be. Shrewd—eligible for Presidency.

Carlos Lacerda (48)—Gov. of Guanabara. No. one anti-commie. One of ablest in country. Brilliant. Was newspaper publisher. Good administrator. Would make good President—under attack for being pro-American.

Adhemar de Barros (63)—Still Gov. of Sao Paulo, a key power. Steals but is on our side. Says he will run but could not be elected. Ideal ticket would be Lacerda–de Barros.

Meneghetti, Gov. of Rio Grande do Sul. (Around 65) Older but good. Some iron but not vigorous.

Nei Braga—Gov. of Parana, south of Sao Paulo and most rapidly growing state in Brazil. Good population with lots of drive. Around 40 years and head of Christian Democratic Party. Anti-Communist and not always outspokenly so. Catholic new dealer. Possible V.P. choice.

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In Middle

Magalhaes Pinto (high 50’s). Gov. of Minas Gerais. Has presidential ambitions. Plays both sides. Technically in UDN but in minority group which would bolt if Lacerda nominated. Difficult to say how able. But is smarter than Goulart.

Carvalho Pinto. Former Gov. of Sao Paulo and Finance Minister. Able, good administrator but provincial who does not understand finance. Honest and puritanical. Sometimes plays to left. Dark horse presidential possibility.

Trend against Kubitschek, and in favor of Lacerda. But election nearly two years away.

Power Centers


Church (weak and divided)

Industrial and Financial Community (Sao Paulo, Rio and Belo Horizonte in that order)

Labor—Official part built by Vargas run by commies or Goulart partisans.

Important to keep alive the Alliance for Progress idea in Brazil.

Burton has piece of paper of loans. About 27 in project loans.
Maybe handle PL 480
World Bank
FRINGE—Peace Corps, etc.
  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, ARA/LA Files, 1964: Lot 66 D 65, Brazil 1964. Confidential. Drafted by Mann. These notes were typed in ARA from an attached set of Mann’s handwritten notes. Gordon was in the United States for consultation January 20–February 10. At an interagency debriefing on January 23 Gordon argued that the United States need intervene only if the Brazilian armed forces were divided: “If this split were not to occur, a coup from either the right or left with armed forces support would be over before the U.S. could exercise any significant influence.” (Memorandum for the record from Robert J. Hill, Jr., January 24; Washington National Records Center, OASD/ISA Files: FRC 330 68 A 306, Brazil 334–703, 1964)