230. Memorandum From the President’s Deputy Assistant for National Security Affairs (Aaron) to President Carter1


  • Events in the Dominican Republic

It is still uncertain as to whether the Balaguer regime has reconsidered its plan to perpetrate an electoral fraud. There has also been considerable domestic interest in your position during this human rights crisis.2

I recommend, therefore, that you approve the issuance of the attached Presidential statement. Secretary Vance agrees and has read and approved this proposed language. Fallows has cleared.

If you approve, we will first send the text to our Ambassadors in the Dominican Republic, Colombia, Venezuela, Costa Rica, and Panama, and will then issue this statement after allowing them a short time to inform their host governments.


That you approve issuing the attached Presidential statement along the lines outlined above.3

[Page 543]


Draft Presidential Statement4

Draft Presidential Statement on the Dominican Republic

I am closely following the events surrounding the election in the Dominican Republic and have been in touch with the Presidents of several neighboring countries in Latin America. I believe we share a common concern for the integrity of the democratic process. I retain my hope that the legally constituted electoral authorities in the Dominican Republic will be able to fully carry out their responsibilities, and that the outcome of the elections will be respected by all.

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Brzezinski Material, Country File, Box 17, Dominican Republic, 1/77–1/81. No classification marking. Sent for action.
  2. In a memorandum forwarding a draft to Aaron, Erb and Mathews wrote, “We believe that Presidential statement at this time is important both from a domestic point of view to demonstrate that the President is taking action in a human rights crisis, and from the international viewpoint to help insure that there will not be backsliding in the Dominican Republic.” (Ibid.)
  3. Carter checked the disapprove option and wrote, “Cy has stronger text.” For the text of Carter’s statement as issued, see Public Papers: Carter, 1978, Book I, pp. 931–932.
  4. No classification marking.