MEMO RE GUATEMALA 1954 COUP

Created: 6/27/1954

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

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The following are soae random thoughteave had during the day about the situation of our teaa.

1* irst received soae very troubles one news from Jakethe Inspection team but on talking to Frank Wisner over thefound that it probably will not hit Nicaragua before July 7. Inworking up soae thoughts on how it might bo delayed

and Headquarters io doing the same. In order to play safe wo should probably figure that it might arrive at Managua on the morning ofivingull days after today.

2* Once we have to move aircraft out o: fj

we will no longer be able practically to supply Call Igor Is forces and we certainly cannot give any fighter support unless wo can obtain an operational air field within Guatemala. This conclusion as to fighters is obvious. As to supply acould not fly from Robaloupply point and back without refueling* Kvenontrolled air strip this would be of no value without substantial fueling facilities/ requiresbs of fuol which, plus containers, would mean that Its total load would be fuel for the return trip* Even the availabilityU would not correct this problem since it, too, would require refueling toound trip.

3* In view of the above it is essential that either the conflict be terminated prior tor an internal position be secured with air

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field plussupply capability. Puerto Barrios scene to be the only solution*

U. In order to take Puerto Barrios men must be shifted fronarea to Puerto Barrios. m now of the opinion that probablyway these men can get there la either on foot or perhapshough oven this Is doubtful) on the railroad. The reason thatnot Include an airborne capacity is that two of tho throei.e. Esquipulas and Chlqu inula would seen to be clearlyloaded takeoffsls while the. Zacapa, nay or mayruch takeoffs. On the other hand Eacapa nay be usable and thereadditional possibilitytrip In Zacapa reported to Sherwood should be asked to checkanyone

else in the know regarding the Zacapa facilities. Under any circumstances the greatest number of combat equipment and men with whichi7 can take off Conceivably taking overloading risks, anoen night be added Se* unless the takeoff facilities aro extremelyould think that at bestould be the maximum.

assuming thehat Zacapa has no adequate air facilities, the only way of reaching Puerto Barrios with additional men will bo overlandould supposeays minimum between tho date of departure and the time of combat.

Assuming usable air facilities at Zacapa, some sort of air lift plan might be worked out.

Under anyould suggest that we encourage Headquarters to go ahead with the arrangements on the)

obtaining It if possible on tbe scheme stated in paragraphf too reference* ould suppose that the wain advantage of tbe boat would be to lead perhaps some support for an attack on Puerto Barrios but more particularly to provide supplies for the Calligeris units and sir force on tho assumption that Puerto Barrios lo taken. Actually it is my offhand opinion that the boat should probably lie off shore until itignal either from an alrcrsft or from shore that all is clear and it can land* This may be tooiew since with airhip with proper weapons mightaluable offensive weapon in support of the attack on the city* Ituppose, be fairly vulnerable as it approached shore but with its own fire power and supporting air craft, this might not be too serious while once in close, it could provide good fire covermall select number of assault troops* ake no position on this except to say that obviously this latter possibility is preferable though if it involved tooisk with respect to the lesship, the more conservative approach night have to be chosen.

8. Under any cireumst&nces it is my view that our major effort at least forndune (assuming that it is necessary for both days) should be to support to the limit tho fight at Zacapa, Chiquimula and Ipala in the hope of seriously hurming the enemy effort plus consolIdating tiie Calligeris position inities and hopefullyonnection with friendly forces in Jalapa. In my opinion this resultossibility since as of the morning ofune, we should have additional aircraft ready for operationalis which were grounded for lack of tail wheel tires.

9* Duringould also recommend bombing at least one Guatemala City target and preferably two. Since the inspection team will probably be in Guatemala City onune it would seem that these may be the only two days available for bombing the city forhile. This raises the serious question of whether or not the Casa Presidencial should be includedarget in this period. ave not yet made up my own mind whether we should request it but at them rather inclined to put it up to

that by the night ofune the citiesfirmlyecision would have to be made whether or not to try

to proceed toward Ouatemala City to hold and send some of the available forces to try to take Puerto Barrios or to try to proceed in both directions. This decision will depend upon the facts at the tine, the damage done by the enemy, the condition of our forces, the availability of usable airports at Zacapa and other facts. It should be noted that as of Junee may have available for operational use additional pilots1 aircraft. If so this added air support might justify sn allout drive for Guatemala City.

additional air power just mentioned wouldactor

if the Zacapa-Chiquimula-Ipala area was not firmly taken by the night ofune and our forces not defeated or disorganized.

under any circumstances we should startfor seme practical plan of action against Puerto Barrios

on the assumption that circumstances will force us to try and capture it.

reviewed:

a. Advice Headquarters to obtain boat.

a -

immediately preparation of plan for capture of

of action for next few days or until completed duoor defeat an all out effort with full air supportChiqidmula and Ipala.

or two bomb attacks during the next two daysCity targets perhaps Casa Prcsidencial being one.

Original document.

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