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Cryptonym: JMBLUG-2

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Unknown identity. JMBLUG-2 (along with JMBLUG-1) was briefed by CIA officer Earle N. Bannister (probably John Doherty), in April of 1954, on Project PBSUCCESS.
PBSUCCESS was the project to overthrow the Arbenz government in Guatemala in 1954. A dispatch on April 16, 1954, from Bannister stated that JMBLUG-2 acted as the intermediary between the CIA and ESQUIRE. The dispatch also noted that ESQUIRE "approached the predecessor of JMBLUG (John S. Peurifoy) and asked to be placed in contact with someone knowing something about agrarian matters. JMBLUG's predecessor introduced him to JMBLUG-2. In subsequent meetings with JMBLUG-2 ESQUIRE gave JMBLUG-2 whatever political information he had but insists that he did not reveal his previous contact with ESCONSON or with (REDACTION)." Richard H. Immerman, in The CIA in Guatemala: The Foreign Policy of Intervention (1982), discussed the possible participation of Robert Hill and Thomas Whelan in PBSUCCESS, along with the established roles of Peurifoy and Whiting Willauer (SKILLET), in the overthrow of Arbenz. Willauer mentioned the three other men above in testimony in 1961 as being involved in the coup. Therefore, Whelan and Hill are possible candidates to be JMBLUG-2.


03/26/54: Cable from Guatemala to LINCOLN: PBSUCCESS RYBAT: "1. In dealing with JMBLUG-1 and 2 it has become apparent that they are aware of the general idea of Project PBSUCCESS (project to overthrow - "without bloodshed, if possible" - the Arbenz government in Guatemala in 1954) although they have not been briefed by this station. Believe this condition potentially more dangerous than true but limited knowledge. If you agree, Bannister (probably John Doherty) desires brief them on strict need to know basis. 2. Provocation attempts believed inevitable as WSBURNT (Guatemala) govt situation deteriorates. Believe briefing these officers on limited basis would tend reduce hazards our operations."


03/31/54: Cable from Director to LINCOLN: RYBAT PBSUCCESS: RE: GUAT 252, LINC 1337: "1. HQs concurs desirability briefing JMBLUG-1 and 2 on strict need to know basis. 2. SGUAT (CIA station in Guatemala) should pouch full details when briefing accomplished."


04/07/54: Air dispatch from COS, Guatemala to LINCOLN: Subject: General - Operational: Specific: Briefing of JMBLUG-1 and JMBLUG-2: "1. On 2 April 1954 I briefed JMBLUG-1 and JMBLUG-2. 2. My briefing was reduced to the most essential and fundamental details, these being that we intended to oust an unfriendly and dominated government with a view toward having it replaced by a friendly government. I did not go into details concerning plans or activities. 3. During the course of this briefing, however, and as I had suspected, it became apparent that both JMBLUG-1 and 2, and JMBLUG-1 in particular, knew and know or at least suspect far more than I told them. It is believed, however, that this briefing was worthwhile since I was able to impress upon them that the information which I had given them was of top secrecy and that our activities are of the utmost delicacy. It was also possible under the circumstances to warn them of possible provocation attempts and to lay the groundwork for obtaining rapid information concerning any such approaches or suspected approaches while at the same time putting them on guard against any effort on their part to 'free wheel.' (REDACTION) Earle N. Bannister (probably John Doherty)."


04/16/54: Air dispatch from COS, Guatemala, to Chief, LINCOLN: Subject: General - Operational. Specific - ESQUIRE. Reference - GUAT 305, 334; LINC 1649, 1753: "1. In accordance with LINC 1649 an effort was made to enter into contact with ESQUIRE through JMBLUG-2 as had been suggested by HUL-A-90. Unfortunately, our efforts through the intermediary JMBLUG-2 proved fruitless since ESQUIRE had departed the capital. 2. In view of the apparent gravity of the situation with respect (REDACTION) and his plans, Adrian B. Kidwell and I traveled on 8 April to ESQUIRE's finca where I held a short but interesting conversation with him. During this conversation, ESQUIRE stated that following the Salama incident he had become convinced that it would be better for him to avoid all further contact with ESCONSON, through whom he had previously reported, and as a result, he had also refrained from contact with any ODYOKE (U.S. Government) representatives until he began having some labor difficulties, he approached the predecessor of JMBLUG (John S. Peurifoy) and asked to be placed in contact with someone knowing something about agrarian matters. JMBLUG's predecessor introduced him to JMBLUG-2. In subsequent meetings with JMBLUG-2 ESQUIRE gave JMBLUG-2 whatever political information he had but insists that he did not reveal his previous contact with ESCONSON or with (REDACTION)...Earle N. Bannister." - - - 04/26/54: (Page 1) Routing and Record Sheet: Esterline number 3 in the "TO" column. Handwritten notes on RNDINDLE in "COMMENTS" section. At bottom of this section redactions before ESQUIRE, RNDINDLE, ESCONSON and JMBLUG-2.

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala: Current Section: 226. 6/23/54-Telegram From the CIA Station in Guatemala to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida

06/23/54: Telegram from Guatemala City to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida: "933. 1. Morning 22 June air attack against Shell Co gas tank caused some 30 holes and loss of approx 60,000 gallons. Salvaged gas being transferred other tanks. Repairs will take two weeks. Source says attack on other tanks would eliminate capital gas supply. Source JMBLUG-2 from (REDACTION), Shell manager. 2. Do not use above figures on SHERWOOD (CIA radio broadcasting program based in Nicaragua begun on May 1, 1954)."


06/25/54: Cable from Guatemala to Director: RYBAT PBSUCCESS INTEL: "(REDACTION) informed JMBLUG-2 that army sending some time tonight double header train composed 22 banana and freight cars to Zacapa which carrying both troops and supplies. Time of departure not known. 250115. Cable Secretariat Comment: A run-off copy of the above message was issued to Mr. Wisner's office at 2345 hours, 24 June 54."


06/26/54: Cable from Guatemala to Director: RYBAT PBSUCCESS: "1. (REDACTION) told JMBLUG-2: A. Train from ADAM (Guatemala City) to HANK (Zacapa - Guatemalan base) strafed, but went on to discharge troops at Cabanas, below HANK. Then went to HANK, discharged material including five tanks. B-6. B. Train from HANK to ADAM last night also hit. Three dead, six wounded in train crew. B-6. C. Calligeris (Carlos Castillo Armas) troops landed this morning at OCOS on Pacific coast, near MEXI border. B-6. 2. To contrary, SWALLOW reports train of 1 A above halted by attack, troops headed for hills also govt truck at Ipala destroyed. C-3. 3. Suggest SHERWOOD (CIA radio broadcasting program based in Nicaragua begun on May 1, 1954) warn train crews stay away from work since safety cannot be guaranteed. 260300Z. Cable Secretariat Comment: Mr. (REDACTION) (WH) notified of receipt of this message at 0600 26 June 54."


07/02/54: Cable from Director to Senior Rep, Guatemala City to Director: RYBAT/PBSUCCESS: "1. Holland has just reported telephone conversation with BLUG-2 in which latter advised his most recent discussion with two members junta presently Guatemala City. At same time we have just received three further communications originating with Oliva and transmitted by base at 2219 Z time today, which messages have authentic ring and appear show real concern. Substance messages is as follows: Road system in Zacapa in danger. Government forces apparently not aware junta authority and are advancing rapidly Vado Hondo Quezaltepeque. Assistance urgently requested. Oliva message also states he ready start attack 0900 hours to fulfill personal orders Castillo Armas. 2. Holland and Whiting jointly urge BLUG-2 to, and Bannister (probably John Doherty) if feasible, take immediate steps prevail on junta do following: A. Initiate and keep up series broadcasts from government radio stations to government forces in field telling them hostilities ended, peace agreement signed and government forces ordered retire in order fall back and disengage all fronts. B. Prevail on military headquarters send immediate orders over army's signal link to field directing withdrawal and disengage all fronts. 3. For LINC: If SHERWOOD (CIA radio broadcasting program based in Nicaragua begun on May 1, 1954) not stood down, request you get off operational immediate for broadcast Armas forces telling of pact and indicating this represents Armas victory and that all forces should withdraw and disengage under no circumstances launch any attack. Dunbar authorized use any other means radio communication available this purpose." Releasing Officer: (REDACTION) Frank G. Wisner, Deputy Director (Plans)

Richard H. Immerman, The CIA in Guatemala: The Foreign Policy of Intervention (1982)

Page 125: ..."The list of officials with UFCO-government connections continues. Former High Commissioner of Germany, John J. McCloy, Eisenhower's close friend who as president of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development had ordered the study of Guatemala's agrarian difficulties, was a United Fruit director. Ann Whitman, the president's personal secretary, was the ex-wife of United Fruit's director and then vice-president for public relations, Edward. Ambassador Robert Hill in Costa Rica, part of the diplomatic team that participated in the CIA project, was a former vice-president of W. R. Grace and Company, which had large Guatemalan interests, and later became a director of United Fruit. Walter Bedell Smith became a director immediately upon resigning from the government in October 1954. On the Council of Foreign Relations, Whitney H. Stephardson was an IRCA officer, and Robert Lehman served on the UFCO board. Lehman was related by marriage to Frank Altschul, the council's secretary, who was responsible for the influential National Planning Association report that contended that the Communists were in complete control of Guatemala..." - - - Pages 140-141: ..."In an oft cited pioneering study of the Guatemalan project, David Wise and Thomas Ross quote testimony given by Whiting Willauer in 1961 before the Senate's subcommittee to investigate the administration of the Internal Security Act as evidence that a team of United States diplomats assisted the CIA operatives. Willauer testified that in addition to himself and John Peurifoy, the leader, the team included the minister to Nicaragua, Thomas Whelan, and Robert Hill in Costa Rica. Journalists Wise and Ross had no reason to doubt Willauer. His participation appears certain...Peurifoy's role is also certain...Willauer may have been inaccurate when he included Whelan and Hill as participants...Hill's participation is more ambiguous"

Gavin McDonald • Carmine Savastano • Richard H. Immerman

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