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Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Secret DIRECTORATE OF INTELLIGENCE WEEKLY SUMMARY Special Report Uruguay's Elections- Tradition vs the Left State Dept. review completed Secret 12 November 1971 No. 0396/71B Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 URUGUAY'S ELECTIONS: Tradition vs. the Left Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET 25X1 Political placidity and a practically uninterrupted tradition of democratic practices have typified 20th century Uruguay. Today, however, the country finds itself grappling with Latin America's most formidable terrorist movement and a third-force political coalition, the Frente Amplio, that hopes to emulate Allende's victory in Chile. The 28 November presidential election pits the incumbent Colorado Party, headed by the hard-lining rightist President Pacheco, against its traditional rivals, the Blancos, and the new leftist coalition. After more than 100 years of Colorado and Blanco rule, the Frente is attempting what would literally be, in Uruguayan terms, the upset of the century. The government's stumbling record has given the left cause for optimism. The administration has lost ground to the Tupamaro guerrillas, and the moderate economic growth of the past two years has been bought at considerable political cost. Further, Uruguay's political system has institutionalized factional politics, and the strong-willed President has added to the disarray by seeking a constitutional amendment that would permit him a second consecutive term. With the Blancos fielding no odds-on favorite candidate, the specter is raised of a tight three-way race of the type that allowed Chile's Allende to squeeze to victory. The Frente, sup- ported by the terrorist Tupamaros, is hoping that, by offering an alternative to the traditional parties, it will be able to take advantage of the general disgruntlement with the country's lack of direction. The Frente, is likely to fall considerably short in its first bid to overturn the establishment. The complex electoral system heavily favors the two major parties, and the Frente is not likely to woo voters from Blanco and Colorado strongholds in the interior where party ties are strong. This should again allow the Colorados and Blancos to dominate the national vote, with the incumbent Colorados being con- ceded a slight edge over their traditional rivals. The Frente bid, which will be stronger in the important contests in the capital, makes it apparent that the country's long-term economic decline is edging toward a political crisis which must be confronted with new attitudes and new policies. The Communist-backed Frente should be able to establish itself as a viable third force that-like the terrorist activities of the formidable Tupamaro guerrilla organization-will serve as a reminder that reliance upon custom and tradition will no longer be sufficient to meet a growing challenge. Special Report - 2 - 4F('.R FT Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 51,16K.C, 1 Uruguay, with a proud heritage of a prosper- ous and thriving economy and a smoothly func- tioning two-party political system, has fallen upon hard times. The difficulties began to appear during the 1950s, when the cost of a massive public welfare system began to overburden an essentially pastoral economy. Earnings began to fall as meat and wool, the principal export com- modities, suffered from fluctuating prices, dwin- dling world markets, and an overvalued exchange rate. Inefficient government enterprises and the failure to increase productivity commensurate with higher levels of spending contributed to the pinch. Successive administrations found it more expedient to pay heed to politics rather than economics and opted for continued spending rather than fiscal responsibility. Budget deficits, a spiraling cost of living, and stagnating per capita gross domestic product characterized the eco- nomic picture in the 1960s. Inflation picked up speed and prices rose 1,600 percent between 1963 and 1969, peaking at an annual rate of 165 percent in the first half of 1968. The economic distress inevitably gave rise to political unease. Many Uruguayans yearned for the peace and prosperity of yesteryear. Dis- satisfied youth began to question whether progress would ever come via the creaking Uruguayan machinery. The startling and dramatic rise of the Tupamaros in the late 1960s gave further urgency to re-examination of traditional practices. Early in this century, the father of Uru- guay's modern political institutions and architect of its social reforms, Jose Batlle y Ordonez, lob- bied vigorously in favor of a system of shared executive power via a plural presidency. From 1918 onward, the country experimented with varieties of a curtailed executive system or "rule by committee." In periods of calm and prosperity the system functioned-tolerably if not effi- Special Report ciently-but it proved unable to cope with crises. In the 1950s the foundering prompted a search for new solutions. A nine-man Council of Govern- ment system was adopted in 1951, but it pro- vided little relief. In 1958 and again in 1962 the voters turned from the Colorados, who had held power for 93 consecutive years, to their tradi- tional rivals, the Blancos. The Blancos fared no better, and in 1966 the voters scrapped the coun- cil and adopted a single presidential system, returning the Colorados to power at the same time. While the voters experimented with specific mechanisms for governing the country, the unique system designed to ensure the dominance of the Colorado and Blanco parties continued to function. The system recognizes the legal and separate existence of factions within a party and allows them to field candidates and gain repre- sentation while remaining officially under the party banner. The presidential election combines both a primary and general contest in which the most-voted candidate of the most-voted party wins. In 1966 the victorious Gestido-Pacheco ticket was one of several slates of differing ideo- logical persuasions fielded by the Colorados. Jorge Pacheco Areco succeeded to the presi- dency in 1967 on the death of retired General Oscar Gestido. e approac a is in eri a pos with determination and dedication. As President he moved forcefully in both the economic and political spheres, and recorded several midterm successes. By the use of restrictive controls his admin- istration slowed the near-ruinous inflation that raged during much of the period from 1955 through 1967. Efforts in 1968 to trim wage 25X6 -3- 12 November 1971 SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET Uruguay= Cost of Living Real GDP Per Capita 50 1965 '66 '67 '68 '69 '70 1965 '66 '67 '68 '69 '70 increases and a subsequent devaluation were fol- lowed by more stringent wage and price freezes distasteful to both labor unions and the general public. The cost-of-living index was held down to a 14-percent rise in 1969 and to 20 percent in 1970, but Pacheco got little mileage out of it. He failed 1:o publicize the positive aspects of the program or to consult with other political leaders so as to emphasize the national, bipartisan aspects of the administration's policies. This has been a continuing weakness during Pacheco's tenure. His term has been a one-man show. Political compromise has been an all but alien art. The cabinet has had no continuity; ministe'ial changes have averaged at least two a month and totaled more than 60 since 1967. The administration is identifiable not by a coherent Special Report program, but by the personal policies of its President. Relations with the legislature, which has opposed many of these policies, have been stormy. The congress, accustomed to deference and a position almost coequal with the president, reacted defensively to Pacheco's rough tactics. Matters nearly reached the breaking point on sev- eral occasions although the legislature usually backed off at the implied threat that Pacheco, supported by the military, might close the con- gress and rule by decree. The ill-feeling gave rise to an abortive congressional attempt this year to impeach the President for allegedly overstepping his constitutional authority in ignoring legislative wishes and imposing emergency security meas- ures. SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET The President's obstinacy, as defined by his critics, or his determination, according to his sup- porters, has been put to its severest test over his public-order policies. In this area, Pacheco has suffered his most serious setbacks, yet he has made and staked a political reputation on the issue of law and order. The government's reaction to unrest, and specifically to the terrorism of the Tupamaros, has been vigorous but woefully inadequate to the task. Bypassing the legislature, Pacheco has made liberal use of emergency security measures that suspend certain constitutional provisions. When the wave of spectacular Tupamaro kidnapings began in 1968, Pacheco became the first Latin American leader to refuse to negotiate. He has not budged from this public stance. The govern- ment, however, has failed to wrest the initiative from the guerrillas and has suffered frequent pub- lic embarrassment at their hands. Most recently, in September, the terrorists staged a mass jail- break of 106 of their fellows, including all of the top leaders imprisoned by the government over the last three years. As an additional insult, the guerrillas freed their hostage of eight months, British Ambassador Jackson, saying there were "no longer any prisoners whose safety his deten- tion had guaranteed." The Tupamaros still hold four Uruguayan captives, including a close adviser to the President whom they have sentenced to "life imprisonment." The President's reaction to the September debacle was characteristic of his hard line. Pledging his own life in the battle, Pacheco trans- ferred responsibility for dealing with the terrorists from the police to the army, but the measures adopted have not yet had encouraging results. Nonetheless, Pacheco's unyielding deter- mination in the face of adversity has won him a degree of respect from the electorate and a meas- ure of popular support. Most of the blame for the reverses suffered by the administration in its counterterrorism campaign have been attributed to the inefficiency and corruption of the govern- ment machine rather than to him personally. Special Report - 5 - If necessary at the cost of nay own life, I will lift this t try out of the `situation i i co e try facing. prom now o more than ever, t1 dministrat on, the, d eision ,making and the r sponsibility far the sate wil e nd mine alone v _ tcc, 11 Sept. 1971, o lowin T armaro rnass~jatl break. SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 SECRET In sum, Pacheco's inflexibility has been both strength and weakness. Persistent efforts in the economic sphere brought Uruguay back from the brink of economic chaos in 1968, but no early end is predicted for the financial squeeze. The stabilization program has been a political mill- stone. The respect occasioned by Pacheco's tough stand on terrorism is balanced off by the absence of sorely needed national political leadership. Pacheco's close-to-the-vest style and his re- luctance to consider or consult others have gov- erned his relations with his own party as well. For example, only in the closing months of the cur- rent campaign did he reveal his decision to seek re-election. That decision and his choice of a running mate were made without party consulta- tions. The re-election effort, via a constitutional amendment permitting a second consecutive term, is sponsored by the Unity and Reform faction, probably the strongest single group in the Colorado Party. The theme of its campaign, "Pacheco or Chaos," accurately reflects Pacheco's presidential philosophy. To take account of the possibility that the amendment may fail, Pacheco has named a stand-in candidate, Agriculture Min- ister Eordaberry. A citizen will vote yes or no on a constitutional amendment, mark one ballot that will include Pacheco, and a second slate that will list Bordaberry instead. The second will be valid if the amendment fails. The President's last-minute unilateral decision to tap Bordaberry for the alternate slot triggered several high-level defections, including Vice President Abdala and several cabinet offi- cials. Those in opposition to Bordaberry cited his forme- membership in the Blanco Party and his lack of real Colorado credentials. Here again, the President's brusque style cost him an opportunity to capitalize fully on both his and an alternate's strength. Special Report The turncoats are likely to take the bulk of their supporters into other Colorado groups rather than to the Blancos or Frente. The Colora- dos will be fielding four other candidates. Jorge Batlle, head of the long-prominent Batlle political clan and a well-known newspaper publisher of moderate political persuasion, is Pacheco's prin- cipal Colorado rival. He has a strong base of support in his powerful List-15 faction and is running with another widely respected Colorado politician in the vice-presidential slot. Previously, his presidential aspirations have been foiled by an inability to expand his appeal beyond this solid base. In the final weeks of the campaign, Batlle's strategy will be to attempt to convince Colorados who name Pacheco on their primary ballot to choose him rather than the officially anointed Bordaberry as a second choice. The Vasconcellos' "third-front" ticket can- not compete with the Batlle or Pacheco machines. The Vasconcellos' slate opposes the Pacheco administration policies across the board and, therefore, furnishes an important escape valve for liberal Colorado votes that might otherwise be lost to Blanco and Frente appeals. The final Colorado candidate, retired General Juan Ribas, has made a big publicity splash but is unlikely to score heavily with the voters. He is competing with better known names for the law and order vote. The New Left Frente Amplio With the Colorados staked out on the right of the political spectrum in this election, the Frente Amplio (Broad Front) has emerged as a counterforce on the left. Opposing Pacheco at every turn, the Frente contends that the blame for the country's ills rests with the sterile, cor- rupt, and inefficient system that has given the voters only a choice between do-nothing look alikes, the tweedledum Colorados and the tweedledee Blancos. The left, principally the Communists, recognized the growing manifestations of -6- 12 November 1971 SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 SECRET uneasiness-the search for new governing mechan- isms, the turn to the Blancos in 1958, and the dramatic rise of the Tupamaro organization since 1968. Especially in its earlier years, that terrorist organization skillfully parlayed vague disgruntle- ment into popular sympathy in the battle against what was portrayed as government corruption. The fledgling Frente effort hopes to harness that same frustration and disenchantment. Efforts by the left to effect election coali- tions date back to the 1950s but have gained only minimal.-`.success. In 1966 the Communist Leftist Liberation Front (FIDEL) attracted only six per- cent of the vote. The Communists failed to expand their role beyond a limited ideological following, and "front" ploys were generally rec- ognized as tactical smoke screens. Respectable groups on the left, such as the Christian Demo- crats, shied away from such alliances, fearful of Communist contamination and domination. This apprehension was eased by the victory of Allende's united front in Chile. The Commu- nist Party of Uruguay held out the prospect of a coalition including "Marxists and non-Marxists alike," and an independent group of intellectuals took the lead in calling for unity late last year. The Christian Democrats were also outspoken advocates of the need for a coalition. Thus, the Frente Amplio came into being in February. The coalition includes the Communists, Christian Democrats, Socialists, Independents, the Revolu- tionary Movement of Uruguay, and several rene- gade factions from the Blancos and Colorados. Some dissidents left the major parties more because of opportunism than any other factor. Ex-Colorado Senator Michelini joined the Frente as his weight within Colorado Party councils was diminishing, partly as a result of the drop in his vote between the 1962 and 1966 elections. He envisions a role for himself as the foremost leader of the non-Communist elements of the Frente, but when he bolted he suffered defections from his group. Others shed their party labels more from ideological conviction and distress at Special Report Pacheco's brand of leadership. They, too, did not pull major segments from the traditional parties. Even the Christian Democrats were not able to lure all of their adherents into the Frente fold, and their offshoot Radical Christian Union is fielding its own presidential candidate. The Frente, however, is counting on a huge protest vote to swell its following. The Communists, although maintaining a low public profile, are supplying the money, drive, and organization for the Frente. Although the former independent groups and major party dissidents optimistically claim that the election results will allow the democratic forces in the Frente to emerge as the controlling force, their confidence is contradicted by such examples as the formation of the Frente's central and coor- dinating committees earlier this year which showed that only the Communist Party was capa- ble of stocking all of the committees with per- sonnel. The party's large organization-about 40,000 members in one of South America's small- est nations-its financial resources, and its na- tional political network make its domination of leftist groupings very likely. The various factions of the Frente are run- ning separate slates for the Senate and the Cham- ber of Deputies, and the squabbling over potential political spoils, added to the differences natural in such a mixed ideological bag, have put a strain on unity. Nothing however, currently threatens the breakup of the Frente. To foster the unity image, the Frente is putting up a single presidential can- didate, the left-leaning, retired General Liber Seregni. Seregni was a capable soldier, sometimes described as brilliant, whose rumored "pro-Com- munist" political beliefs and political aspirations led to his retirement from the military. He filled the Frente need for a non-Communist com- promise candidate. Seregni has handled himself well in public, and the Frente has concentrated on attacking Pacheco's policies. It contends that it can halt the terrorist violence and emphasizes that the country - 7 - 12 November 1971 SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET Urugua'~a`na e uayl 6 Tacuarembb GEI f~1 ,A a4~ Special Report J ~ampa ~~ o n Paso de los os Embalsedel Santa Da Rio Negro Clara a' R U G U ZA Y 'Durazno -~ r Florida 1 Ilan Jove I r i BRAZIL / nas `'Melo 0 Rio Branch Rocha, Mal ~..~ 9.. 01 Lague a 25X1 SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 SECRET is ready for change. It urges amnesty for all politi- cal prisoners, selected nationalizations, and resto- ration of relations with Cuba. Its spokesmen have in the past engaged in more radical rhetoric, but its official platform drew back from some of the earlier allusions to widespread nationalizations, free-swinging attacks on the OAS and foreign companies, and hints of a new political and elec- toral system. Having staked out the left of the political stage as its own, the Frente is now avoid- ing ultraradical stances that would alienate prospective voters. The Frente has gained the unsolicited public support of the Tupamaros-the Communist Party would prefer to keep what it considers "misguided revolutionaries" at arms length. At the same time, the Frente has publicly rejected terrorism as a way to solve the country's problems. The Blancos, as much by necessity as choice, occupy the middle ground. They hope that mod- erates will shy away from the extremes presented by Pacheco and the Frente and will vote for a Blanco candidate rather than one of the other Colorados. The leading Blanco hopeful, Senator Ferreira Aldunate, hammered together a party coalition early this year and has run a well-organized cam- paign. His official platform, which includes calls for selected nationalizations and land reform, is a nationalistic and generally realistic effort to stem the loss of votes to the Frente. Although the articulate Ferreira has drawn well throughout the campaign, the lack of a second strong Blanco candidacy to swell the party's over-all vote seemed an insurmountable handicap. The failure of the other announced Blanco presidential aspirant, retired General Mario Aguerrondo, to attract early support led to rumors of a third candidacy. In September and October, however, Aguer- rondo's campaign began to attract some solid support, especially in the interior. Although Special Report Aguerrondo remained a somewhat colorless per- former, one of the respected party elders agreed to run on his slate and public interest picked up. Aguerrondo, as another law-and-order candidate, probably also benefited from the Tupamaros' massive September prison break. Some conserva- tives, who favor Pacheco's policies but are dis- satisfied with his performance, could turn to Aguerrondo. With the emergence of two contenders whose strengths appear to complement one an- other-Aguerrondo appealing more to the interior and Ferreira more to the capital-the Blancos for the first time began to see a real chance to win the presidential race. President Pacheco has firmly staked out his position on the law-and-order question, which is regarded as the overriding campaign issue and his principal strength. He is having trouble in turning his efforts in the economic sphere to any political advantage. The austerity program could benefit the populace only in the long run, and in the meantime the voters, especially in the capital, regarded the restrictions as onerous. In recogni- tion of his weakness on this issue, Pacheco began to move away from strict austerity in the latter half of the year. Despite a constitutional prohibi- tion against wage increases in the civil service in the year preceding elections, Pacheco decreed a monthly "loan" beginning in August and con- tinuing through February, it being understood that repayment would be forgotten. In September the government raised the minumum wage and announced that all private sector wages would be increased 27.2 percent, with selected industries receiving even more. The increases are in excess even of the demands of the powerful Communist trade union federation and will again fuel infla- tion. But they will partly offset the political deficits incurred by past policies and the setback occasioned by the Tupamaro escape in Septem- ber. Along with recent very flexible enforcement of the restrictions on trade union activities, the SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET wage hikes went a long way toward ensuring labor peace through the elections. Pacheco's propaganda has hammered away at the theme that the Frente is a Communist disguise and represents an alien tradition wedded to violence. Pro-Pacheco campaign posters juxta- pose the Frente with quotes from Fidel Castro. Blancos trade on the negative aspects of both the Frente and Pacheco, contending that the Frente has no real chance to win and that a protesi vote against Colorado policies will have impact only if entered in the Blanco column. The Frente strategy, pursued quite success- fully through the early months, has been to pic- ture itself as riding a popular groundswell. Its quick starting and free spending campaign, ini- tiated while its opponents were still preoccupied with intraparty politicking, enhanced the image. Not unexpectedly, the individual candidates have depended more upon party labels, personal ap- peal, and recognized ideological leanings than on any specific campaign promises of solutions for Uruguay's problems. The standard campaign fare includes attacks on the unpopular banking indus- try, criticism of President Pacheco that ranges from mild to malevolent, and calls for progress for the economic sphere. The relatively straightforward issues are balanced by a bewildering barrage of candidates. There are nine presidential candidates, and each of the various party subfactions has nominated hopefuls for senator, deputy, and municipal of- fices. The average Uruguayan is literate, inti- mately involved with the political process, and quite experienced in picking his way through a welter of candidates. In the elections of 1966, besides various constitutional reform proposals the electoral lists contained 17 presidential can- didacies and more than 200,000 office seekers. The figure, although it includes duplications and substitutes, does illustrate the sophistication of the voter and the extent of participation in the political process in a nation of less than three Special Report million people. The political parties are permitted to print their own ballots under central super- vision, so that many voters arrive at the polls with ballots distributed by their local political club ready to be stuffed into the box. The Frente is hoping that an especially large, youthful vote in this contest will swing the elec- tion its way. Voter interest should push the par- ticipation level well beyond the 75 percent of the registered voters who have turned out in the last two elections. Registration drives have swelled the rolls to about 1.8 million eligible voters. This will be the first election conducted under a new con- gressional bill which has put teeth, by way of penalties, in a long-standing but unenforced con- stitutional stipulation making voting obligatory for citizens over 18 years of age. The voter increase and the new laws are at best a mixed blessing for the Frente. Those who have chosen not to vote in previous elections seem as likely to be sedentary conservatives as activist radicals ready to mark a protest ballot. Penalties may also draw out more housewives and their vote is likely to be entered in traditional columns. The population of the country is not nearly as youthful as are most others in Latin America. This also weighs against the Frente. The average age is over 32, with more than 400,000 of the potential 1.8 million voters already on retirement rolls. The average Uruguayan voter, while possibly disappointed with the Colorado government's per- formance and perhaps disenchanted that the downhill economic slide has pinched his pocket- book, is probably not yet ready for the radical change associated with the Frente. Especially in the interior, where slightly more than half the population lives, conservativism is likely to block the Frente aspirations. The conservative factions from the Colorados and the Blancos have his- torically run well outside the capital, and there is little sign of change this year. In the outlying areas, neighborhood political clubs the func- tioning nuts-and-bolts mechanism for delivering SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 SECRET votes-tend to a tightly knit cohesion which ap- proaches that of a social group. The Frente should make a much stronger showing in Montevideo. The factions of the Frente that participated separately in the 1966 elections attracted only eight percent of the in- terior vote but 22 percent of the vote in Monte- video. If they were to better that record substan- tially, they would pose a serious challenge in light of the normally close division of the votes be- tween the Blancos and Colorados. Although both Blancos and Colorados are fielding candidates for mayor who appear somewhat more attractive than the Frente nominee, the prohibition against splitting votes between national and local choices makes the party label rather than personal attrac- tiveness the critical factor. The Frente has shown well in the polls in the capital, close on the heels of the Colorados and with a substantial lead over the Blancos, and the expected closing rush by all three parties will be of critical importance. A majority vote for the re-election amend- ment seems highly unlikely. Too many in Pa- checo's own party oppose it, and the President lacks the personal following to carry off such a vote of confidence. The most voted candidate of the most voted party carries the day, and the Colorados, with or most probably without Pa- checo, seem likely to retain the presidency, the Blancos finishing a strong second. The Blanco candidate Ferreira Aldunate could conceivably emerge as the most popular eligible candidate fielded by either party, but the Blanco total will probably not match the Colorados. Either Battle, somewhat to the left of center, or the somewhat more conservative Bordaberry thus seems the most likely choice to succeed Pacheco. With voter samples showing 25 percent of the vote still un- decided, neither is an odds-on favorite and the Blancos retain an outside chance. The Frente does not yet appear to have the political muscle for a major national bid. Simply on the basis of the number of parties and factions now running under its banner, however, it will almost surely increase the left's congressional representation. With FIDEL members and recent congressional converts from the major parties, the Frente now has 11 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and four of the 30 in the Senate. Gains are likely, but probably not enough to give it a congressional balance of power. Given the factionalization of Uruguayan parties, presidents are accustomed to operating with minority sup- port and negotiating for other votes. A substantial Frente representation in the congress may make interparty negotiations somewhat more difficult, but not impossible. Just as a strong congressional representation would increase its political leverage, the capture of the capital race would amount to a major psychological boost and would deal a blow to the future of the two-party system. A close race be- tween the Colorados and the Frente and a large undecided vote continue to be reflected in the latest polls, and in a contest as tight as this one still looks, last-minute miscalculations or a final party push could have a dramatic impact. As the size of the uncertain vote has dwindled in the last months, however, the two traditional parties have benefited more from the shift than has the Frente. The present trend seems likely to con- tinue and should allow the Colorados to score an uneasy triumph over the upstart Frente. Extraconstitutional Factors: The Military and the Tupamaros Extraconstitutional solutions are not un- precedented in the country's history. In both 1933 and 1942 presidents illegally extended their terms with military acquiescence and instituted measures that strengthened the executive. Presi- dent Pacheco too has lamented the weakness of his office and has used the implied threat of military backing to cow his opponents. With Special Report - 11 - SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 SECRET public security forces often frustrated by the ter- rorists' ingenuity, rumors of coup plotting have occasionally arisen. At this point, however, they amount to little more than talk about con- tingency plans to support the President if he attempts to extend his term. Even this is not widespread and is based on the slim possibility that the Frente might win the elections and that Pacheco would take the initiative. In that even- tuality, the President could probably count on the military standing squarely behind him. The President involved the military establish- ment more fully in the antisubversion battle by transferring responsibility for controlling terror- ism from the police to the armed forces in Sep- tember. The military is busy trying to sort out the mechanics of its new responsibilities. In addition, public security forces are apparently under wraps until after the elections to avoid the possibility that new initiatives against the terrorists might result in a political scandal. Thus far the public security forces have shown that, operating with their present methods and under existing handi- caps, they cannot eliminate, and indeed are hard pressed to contain, the Tupamaros. The judicial system leans to an extreme for Latin America in the direction of protecting the rights of individ- uals and metes out light sentences. This is not likely to change in the near term. After the elec- tions, the counterterrorist campaign will therefore have to become far more efficient, or brutal, if it is to cope with the threat. The Tupamaros, for their part, have similarly scaled down their pre-election activities. Although they had previously disowned all political effort, recent communiques have reflected their interest in the elections and their "positive attitude" to- ward the Frente. Not all elements in the Tupamaro organization share this view however. Policy disputes have arisen over the proper emphasis to be given to the violent versus the political tactic. One of the factions of the Frente, the 26 March Movement, is receiving Tupamaro backing and could emerge as a political arm of the terrorist group. Even if the disagreements give rise Special Report to some fragmentation, however, the Tupamaros will retain a substantial capacity for terrorist activity as a hard core has been nurtured on, and presumably is committed to, a violent strategy. Movement toward resolution of the internal dispute will await, in part, the election results. In the meantime, even the violence prone seem un- likely to attempt to force cancellation of the election. Such a tactic would require an all-out effort by a majority of the Tupamaros, and would risk all of their resources in a long-shot gamble. A more likely tactic for the pragmatic Tupamaros would be an effort to stage another embarrassing spectacular designed for political impact just before the election. The Frente's political star is tied to external factors. It is still a tenuous coalition of political convenience. As a protest movement, it reflects primarily a negative reaction to the inability of the government to solve economic problems and calm the country. A continued lack of success in these areas will boost its stock. Its realistic near-term goal remains to make a showing in this election impressive enough to establish itself as a viable third force that could be a serious threat in 1976. An impressive showing would be in the neighborhood of 20 percent of the vote. If the Frente wins the mayor's seat in Montevideo, the resulting patronage and prestige would help bind the coalition together, but its political muscle, while significant, would have definite limitations. The Blancos and Colorados would presumably maintain a majority on the Montevideo Departmental Council, which has considerable power over the mayor's office. Police forces are under national rather than local jurisdiction, and the mayoralty is partly de- pendent upon the purse strings controlled at the national level. Whatever the exact percentage of the vote tallied by the left's coalition, the fact of the -12- 12 November 1971 SECRET Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 SECRET Colorado Party Frente's existence is itself a clear indication of disenchantment. The next administration will have to bend greater efforts toward achieving a sense of national unity and fashioning bipartisan support for its programs or face a continuation of present trends. Whatever the exact shape of the new admin- istration, a number of problems are likely to deepen rather than disperse. Many of the financial difficulties are rooted in the basic economic struc- ture and there are no short-term solutions. The terrorist violence seems likely to become worse, especially as compared to the pre-election period. If the Frente loses the elections, as is expected, some radicals will view it as a reaffirmation of the hard line. Some of those who have backed the Frente political bid may in frustration and disap- pointment embrace the violent alternative posed by the Tupamaros. No government, not even a Frente administration, is likely to be able to fol- low policies that would satisfy incessant Tupamaro demands. In addition, the Tupamaros, whose style has been copied by other revolution- ary groups in Latin America, are breeding imita- tors within the country as well. Other small bands will be seeking to utilize the Tupamaros' success- ful tactics for personal gain and political advan- tage. With the military now more firmly com- mitted to the struggle and the Tupamaros strengthened by their several jailbreaks over the past year, many of the ingredients seem present for a wider struggle. Jorge Pacheco Areco Blanco Party Wilson Ferreira Aldunate Frente Amplio L Iber .Seregni Radical Christian Union Special Report -13- SECRET 12 November 1971 Jorge Battle Ibanez Juan Pedro Ribas Uruguay: Presidential Candidates (Major candidates in red.) 1966 Election Results PARTIES Votes % Colorado 607,633 49.3 National 496,910 40.3 Christan Democrat 37,219 3.0 Fidel Communist) 69,750 5.7 Socialist 11,559 0.9 Other 8,691 0.7 Total Total eligible voters 1,658,368 Senate Deputy Seats Seats 16 13 - 1 50 41 3 5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927A009200040004-5 Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5 Secret Secret Approved For Release 2009/01/21: CIA-RDP79-00927AO09200040004-5