194. Memorandum From William J. Jorden of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1 2

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  • Soviet Involvement in Costa Rican Presidential Elections

The attached sensitive intelligence report (Tab A) is of interest. The Secretary General of the Costa Rican Communist Party said that the Soviet Charge d’Affaires has instructions to give financial support to the candidate of the National Liberation Party (the party of the current President Figueres). The CP leader said he was already working out ways on finance the PLN candidate in the next (1974) presidential election.

It developed in the conversation that the CP and the Soviets gave financial backing to Figueres in the 1970 election. It was done in two ways: 1) direct payments to Figueres and 2) Soviet purchases of coffee at inflated prices with the difference between the normal price and the higher one going to the PLN candidate. Apparently both the Soviets and the local Communists are irritated with Figueres because he refuses to acknowledge past help and has been opposing the Soviets on commercial and political matters. It seems that the Soviets and Communists hope to do better with the next candidate they support.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, Box 720, Country Files, Europe, USSR Vol. XXIV August 1972. Secret; Sensitive. Sent for information. Attached but not published at Tab A is the CIA Intelligence memorandum.
  2. Jorden informed Kissinger of intelligence indicating that the Soviets and Costa Rican communists had become irritated with President Figueres.