DEBRIEFING OF COL. EDWARD N. L. GLASS, 1 JUNE 1954.

Created: 6/1/1954

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

CIA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGi

RELEASEAS SANITIZED -

FOR: Chief, Western Hemisphere

Debriefing of Col. Edward.

Col. Glass: Per Instructions furnished ne In earlyroceeded to Ouatenala City, stopping at Loa Angeles and Mexico City, arriving at Guatemala City atay whichunday. About'clockalked with Mrs. Glass to the National Palace and was standing on tha stepsroup of officers hurried up and greeted esc like old friends. They guided me to tbe object of ay visit, tbe Minister of CopsudIcations and Public Works, Mr. Carloa Sandoval Andana. Be was In conference with tbe President, Monday being bis conference day, but be sent word out that be was delightedas In Guatemala and would call on ne at the hotel that nightould be so good as to wait for bla. id and he did, and weery pleasant two hours. He told me that the President was pleased at my being in the country, that he hadar and driver placed at my disposition, andas to consideruest of tbe country. Mrs. Glassade tbe usual tourist rounds of the city and suburbs like good tourists. Wherever we went, Quatnaalanead forgotten about would come charging up and embracing me and Ittruggle to have any privacy for the next ten days owing to tbe flood of Invitations. Mot that we wanted privacy,ad wished to make my own schedule. On2e went to tbe highlands, to Lake Atitlan,and Quiche. Monday, theImall cocktail party for aboutative officers and civilians, to return thead received.

I cannot over estimate tbe cordiality ond hospitality with whlab we were received. efer to Cabinet ministers, top ranking Army officers, Central American diplomats, newspaper editors, ot least two Catbollo priests,reat number of civilians and businessmen, active or retired.

I arranged to delay my scheduled return for three daysm happyid in view of the events which transpired. However, due to extremely badas delayed three additional days when no planes arrived nor took off. inally left Saturday,h, and arrived in Washington Sunday night returning by way of Hew Orleans. onsider theleaned to be of value but only so far as tbe credence lent it.

Will you describe your Initial contacts with the

Embassy and the development of subsequent contacts?

Col. Glass: My instructions upon leaving Washington were to actourist, to emphasize that by tbe presence of Mrs. Glass, and toinimum of contact with our Embassy people. Per regulations effecting all

military people, active and retired, whenent to the Consulate to register. The young lady recognized ny name from my identification card and informed me that Col. McCormick was expecting me and waiting for so,ent to his office,ew minutes about things In general, then he ushered ae Into tbe Ambassador's office. Ambassador Puerlfoy was very cordial, and Informed ma that several people on his staff were waiting to meet me and would give me every assistance in my mission. This rather surprised me because it appeared that the signals had been changed in the middle of the game.

Within theays, Col. McCormick and

singly, called on me at the lobby of tbe Son Carlos Hotel. ssthe mutual scorn of these two teammates.for

Instance, told ne to keep awey from MoCormlck, uiax. ne was veryaald tho same thingexcept doubled in spades; and

they were both unanimous in condemning tne Naval Attache.

Col.we have your comments regarding the recent

delivery of arms to Ouatemala?

Col,charging down to my hotel fairly

beating hie brains out in alarm. old him not to worry, that lterfectly legitimate purchase,ad already beon assured by my contacts, civil and military. In the Rational Palace, for Instance, Secretary Andana; Col. Paez of the Military Academy; his assistant, Lt. Col. Chinehi la; Major Rosales, Cammndant of tbe Cadets; newspaper editors Blanco and Marroquin Rojos, and others whose evidence was confirmatory. The Information boiled down to the fact that this was the normal replacement of missing and worn out military equipaent, destined solely for the use of the Army. By no means will lt be available to tbe Ccsmtunlsts as rumored In headlines In. press, magazine articles and cables. Col. Parinello is pioturedewspaperrought back with melepassionate explanation of this notorious arms shipment, and in my opinion lter cent credible. ook occasion to go to his office the following day and told hlaice thing be had done for all concerned. ropped the remarkoped that he could re-equip hie little army and the military academy, and asksd If he could tell me what the shipment consisted of. He said, "My dear General, we don't know ourselves yet till we get It unpacked. This was purchased abroadivilian cemission sent there for the purpose, and you know howommission like this is, they will buy any bill of goods shoved otr words to that effect.

Col.Dobave any comments on the reaction within

the Guatemalan Army to American pressure and disapproval of this shipment!

Col. Glass: The reaction was very evident. The Army has been and Is pro-American, and tbeir reaction over the turmoil stirred up was ona of hurt surprise. They felt that their efforts to modernise and re-equip their little army were quite understandable between military people, that thorn could be no question that these armu would be used by subversives;

that, In foci, speaking as one military man to another, it would be used to combat these very Communists. In brief, although this newspaper and State Deportment turmoil hae not yet alienated their reliance on Uncle Sow, it has

been on the point of cooling off their good will.

Col. Colonel Olass, will you give us your views

regarding ihe buduii^ of Arbenz' regime In Guatemala, and of tho Communist elements which nowart of that regime?

Col. Glass: They are on tbeir last legs. From both military and civilianave learned that dissatisfaction In general. All over the city ie seen theainted on walls. This refers tod article of the Constitution which prohibits the existence of any foreign dominated political party. Excessive taxea have raised the cost of living to place even essential elements of food out of reach of the masses. The Guatemalans are very patriotic people. They resent foreign interference from whatever Bouree. Tbe resentmentmall coterie who are now enjoying having the President's ear Is general and marked. The demission of this character,elieve. Is the startouse cleaning. alked to Mrs. Arbenz' brother, Hr. Vlllanova, who bad Just returned fromurious over his slater's support of those coyotes, as he called them, up In tbe palace; that Jacobo bad gone too far, that It can't continue, and for tbe good of Ouatenala, something baa to happenbut quick. elieve tbe President finds himselfituation similar to that of Mr. Roosevelt during the coalew years back, involving tbe mine operators and Mr. John L. Lewis, when he said,lague on both your houses". The Aray, of course, has no sympathy with this Red Infiltration. redicted before going down there last month, any Red domination would result in the purge of tbe Army's best elements. It Is true that "they have never had lt sout their security la but momentary. Any action involving the over-throw of thia Oovernment would, In my opinion,oalition of military and civilian elements, perhaps of people not presently in the news. an refer to this so-called movement by an exile inne Castillo Armas. He la absolutely discredited with the Army as being tbe vulgar assassin. His abortive attempt to seize the airport0 was not exactly kosher. It wastraight-forward military coupommando raid with tbe purpose of assassinating military commanders, poor devils who were merely performing their duties. This cooked his goose as far as the military was concerned. His raid waa tipped off to the Oovernment and they were bunted down and killed like so many rabbits, tbe only one to escape being Castillo Armas himself.

I believe that June willig change. Engineered by orfigures such as Diaz, Sanchez, and Enrique Peralta. Several contacts have even placed the date as two weeks from lasthe change will either consist in an outright overthrow of Arbenzomplete about-face on the part of Arbenz toward his Red advlBors.

Tho Government Is almost bankrupt. It enjoys considerable Income from the coffee properties which were expropriated from the Germans at the

start of the laat vorld war and never returned to the owners. With coffeeound instead ofrice of thirty-odd cents, this income ia not inconsiderable. Public works, practically all useless, are continuing to drain the treasury. Forighway paralleling the railroad to Puerto Barrios, the tremendous Olympic stadium built to impress the rest of Latin America, the mile-long roller-coaster, tbe king-sized bull ring, and the hospitals which are never finished. The labor unions are not satisfied at all with tbe strikes called by the Red agitators; they do not got paid for time loot on strike. aveood authority that the Honduras strikers are financeday and this money is all Red.

At tbe Aaa rl con Club recently on Armed Forcesriend of mine, Guatemalan, who begged me to sit at his table to meet some good friends of bis. It was close to tbe end of tbe party, and refreshments had been served generously and partaken of with relish. new hla well enough to say, "You and your friends lookunch of conspirators huddled over here In tbe corner. What are you cooking apt" He said, "Don't Joke, Glass; this is serious. Wo are really trying to buildnited front against these Connies". This was interesting because bis friends vers tho ministers and ambassadors representing Cuba, Bl Salvador, Honduras, and Panama.

With reference to the prolonging absence of Colonelavea reliable sourcetbe object of his visit to

Central and South America was to determine the pro and anti-Communistin those countries. My personal opinion. Is that he might have been sowing some seeds, explaining that tbe Commies were not so strong as represented, that tba turmoil was morely growing pains, and the sickness would clearalked to two of tba three Torrlello brothers. new thea Intimately for four years. Armando Torrlello la almost an American; he learned his dentistry In. and oven practiced here. sked him, "How come your brother Bill got that way!" Ha said,ave bawled him out too, tailing him be was way offhat we can't live withoutnd why In tbe hell can't you tone down or lay off all these anti-American attacks which are losing us friends all over the world, keeping millions of tourist dollars sway and playing Into the hands of thesend do you know what be said? 'Armando, for years this little banana republic has Just been following along inconspicuously,ittle old no account country. We had to wake up Latin America and make them appreciate Guatemala. The only way to do that is toellig stink so they can't overlook us. The more stink wa make, the more publicity we will get and you must admit, that all over the world, Guatemala hasigh peak (or words to thathe puerility of thin attitude speaks for Itself.

L

Chief, WH III

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