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Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
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Document Creation Date: 
December 20, 2016
Document Release Date: 
March 8, 2007
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Publication Date: 
August 24, 1966
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PDF icon CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6.pdf171.86 KB
Approved For Release.2007i03108: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 S-E-C-R-E-T C E N T R A L I N T E L L I G E N C E A G E N C Y OFFICE OF NAT20NAL ESTIMATES 24 August 1966 MEMORANDUM FOR THE D SUBJECT: Dominican Republic: Can Balaguer Hell the Cat? Balaguer is facing a particularly difficult dilemma. He feels the need to bring his military mare under control; he would like to do this before the departure of the Inter- American Peace Force (TAPE), now scheduled for late September; but to do it sa quickly risks a violent reaction by the military. One possible way out would be to ask the TAPE to stay longer, though this too would have some political Co$t. 1. In our last estimate on the Dominican Republic, we noted the likelihood of further tension and disorder, and painted out that the IAPF had become the primary stabilizing factor in the country. We also discussed the necessity, and at the same time the delicacy, of reshaping the Dominican military establishment, and we warned that if the new president moved clumsily in this, he might provoke the very military intervention he was trying to rule out. 2. The Balaguer administration, after a brief honeymoon period, is now faced with increasing suspicion, opposition and N .2- , "Prospects far Stability in the Dominican Republic," GROUP 1 Excluded from automatic S-E-C-R-E-T downgrading and Approved Far Release 2007103!08 : CIA-RDP79RQO~~71~'~~'~~03-6 Approved For Release ~007i03108 : CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 ..~ S-E-C-R-E-T intrigue, Some elements on the extreme left have resumed acts of violence; some on the extreme right are plotting once again. One aspect of Balaguer's response has been the preparation of a draft law to curtail political party activity; this is antag- onizing part of the moderate opposition as well. His own Reformist Party is not so we11-organized or united that it pro- vides him with a really solid base, and a number of its members are disenchanted because Ba.laguer has given them less patronage and mare austerity than they expected. 3. But it is Bala:guer's relationship to the military that poses the most serious short-run problem. He has appointed as his awn military aide an ambitious officer whb is generally considered a Tru~illoist and is regarded with suspicion by the defense minister and the service chiefs, who have made their views known to Balaguer. Bala.guer has replaced the chief of police with a trusted associate -- but a man who seems heavier handed and lighter headed than his predecessor. He has ordered -- though not yet implemented -- the transfer Of two key military units to what seem to be more reliable comrr~nds. This is a big establishment in a small country. Total number of military personnel is nearly 19 000. In addition, there is the National Police with about ,500. Though not the throw-back, gorilla outfit it was in Tru~illo's time, the Dominican military is still essentially a conservative force and tends to align itself with the civilian elite. - 2 - S-E-C-R-E-T Approved For Release 2007/03108: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 Approved For Release 2007/03108: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 -~ S-E-C-R-E-T ~ ~. Balaguer has told the US Ambassador that he is deter- mined to proceed with a reduction and thorough reorganization of the Dominican military. Although he realizes that this involves some risk, he may be underestimating how much. He has emphasized his belief that certain specific changes must "Qe accomplished and that the broad outline of the whole plan must be established while he sti11 has the baclcing of the IAPF. (IAxF strength is now down t4 about 5,000, and the last units are scheduled to leave in the latter part of September.) He has 'been ,giving some thought to the pros and cons of requesting s,n extension o#' the IAPF presence. 5. Many Dominican military figures are probably willing to cooperate with Ds,la,guer in his reorganization efforts. Others in the military are bowed to become restive as they see plans developed to cut back not only their numbers, but also their privileges and prerogatives. Officers already involved in con- spiring with civilian rightists are likely to do mare of it. Any upsurge in terrorism an the part of the extreme left or any improvement in the political fortunes of the moderate left, would probably cause more of the military to involve themselves in coup plotting. S-E-C-R-E-T Approved For Release 2007/03108: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 Approved For Release 2007/03108: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 ~~ S-E?C-R-E-T .,. 6. Since its inception, the IAPF has been an effective deterrent to insurgency from the left and to a coup from the right. The likelihood of these contingencies will in any case become greater when the last elements of the TAPF depart. And if, before the presently scheduled departure date in late September, Balaguer presses ahead to accomplish several of his military reform measures -- and to advertise the rest -- the chances of a military coup would be sharply increased. FOR THE BOARD OF NATIONAL ESTIMATES: Acting Chairman Ea 12356 1.3(x)(4) Approved Far Release 2007103/08: CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 Approved For Release 2007/03108 :CIA-RDP79R00904A001300010003-6 fi~IEMORANDUM FG, , This memo seat tc: ~9eam Rwk, Ga?rge Ball, Thomas Hughes, Henri area, Eobt. Mc]!