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Cryptonym: SWALLOW

Definition:
Unknown identity. A cable on 30 May, 1954, stated that Graham L. Page (probably Henry Hecksher) met and debriefed SWALLOW, with the latter agreeing that SMILAX was the only member of the high command who could be trusted.
Status:
Unknown
Discussion:
SWALLOW also offered his services to arrange a meeting with SMILAX during the week beginning 31 May. In addition, a dispatch on 1 June, 1954, mentioned that SWALLOW had a residence in Guatemala City, and that he was viewed in official American circles as having "a unique reputation for personal probity and whose dedicated opposition to Communism has never been questioned." SWALLOW was also described as "a close personal friend" of SMILAX. SWALLOW was requested to arrange a meeting between Page and SMILAX "on neutral ground." Furthermore, a dispatch on 2 June, 1954, discussed a meeting between Graham Page and JMBLUG (John S. Peurifoy), in which "JMBLUG fully approved of our endeavor to enlist the support of SWALLOW in the defection of members of the Army High Command and promised to continue backstopping to the extent of vouching for his bona fides." It is probable that SWALLOW was a Honduran asset.
Sources:

https://www.cia.gov/readingroom/docs/DOC_0000922990.pdf

05/30/54: Cable from Guatemala City to Director: Slugline RYBAT PBSUCCESS: K PROGRAM FROM PAGE: "1. Page met SWALLOW 30 May in presence ESQUIRE who interpreted. SWALLOW unquestioningly accepted Page bona fide. Most gracious cooperative and ostensibly discreet. 2. Page briefed SWALLOW on PBSUCCESS concept in broad outline, stressing that views not official, yet reflecting thinking on highest policy-making level PBPRIME (U.S.) 3. Current phase one of active PBPRIME support of indigenous, Calligeris-led endeavor overthrow WSBURNT (Guatemala) regime. However if people found incapable clean their stables, PBPRIME bound to step in sooner or later. 4. Key to current phase is army high command attitude in case of uprising. Page anxious convey to army high command PBPRIME resolve liquidate WSBURNT regime by all means short of outright intervention. Would like talk to SMILAX. 5. SWALLOW agreed SMILAX only member high command who can be trusted. Immediately proffered services lay on meeting during week beginning 31 May..."

https://www.cia.gov/readingroom/docs/DOC_0000922848.pdf

06/01/54: Courier dispatch from COS, Guatemala, Withheld, LINCOLN: Subject: General - K-Program: Specific - Meeting with SWALLOW: "1. On 30 May, Graham L. Page, accompanied by ESQUIRE (who had made the necessary arrangements the day previous) called upon SWALLOW at his (REDACTION) residence in Guatemala City. It was pointed out to SWALLOW that Page, though in no official capacity, would be able to reflect some of the thinking prevalent in responsible American circles on the highest policy-making level of the Administration. There can be little doubt that SWALLOW immediately and fully grasped the distinction we were trying to convey...3. SWALLOW, who in official American circles enjoys a unique reputation for personal probity and whose dedicated opposition to Communism has never been questioned, is the prototype of a young, tough, healthy, athletic...6...Our request to SWALLOW was therefore to lay on a meeting between Page and SMILAX 'on neutral ground'...SWALLOW expressed the conviction that SMILAX who was a close personal friend of his would give his consent to attend the meeting...12. It should be noted that SWALLOW spoke about Calligeris in terms of the highest admiration, describing him as the only man who could possibly remedy the existing situation... 14...SWALLOW is no neophyte in conspiratorial matters and is bound to realize that his patronage over a meeting between Page and SMILAX should it leak out, would undoubtedly lead to (REDACTION). SWALLOW is going to be privy to Page's talks with SMILAX, an unavoidable contingency under the circumstances..."

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala Current Section: 168. 6/2/54-Dispatch From the CIA Chief of Station in Guatemala to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida

06/02/54: Dispatch from COS, Guatemala Station to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida: Subject: General - K-Program: Specific - JMBLUG: "1. This is to advise you that Page (probably Henry Hecksher) paid JMBLUG (John S. Peurifoy) a personal call on the evening of 1 June 1954. The meeting took place in JMBLUG’s private residence. 2. In view of certain anticipated ramifications of the SWALLOW operation, it was deemed necessary to apprise JMBLUG of what had transpired and what we are trying to accomplish. Page gave JMBLUG a general briefing on the scope and purpose of K-Program and explained that he is operating independently of the Station so as to preclude any conceivable compromise to our diplomatic representation should the Guatemalan authorities uncover his true status. 3. JMBLUG fully approved of our endeavor to enlist the support of SWALLOW in the defection of members of the Army High Command and promised to continue backstopping to the extent of vouching for his bona fides. Page advised JMBLUG that Whiting had decided against formally introducing Page to him to so as to rule out any possibility of embarrassment should there be an unpleasantness. 4. Page disavowed detailed knowledge of the progress of PBSUCCESS and of the nature of Calligeris’ (Carlos Castillo Armas) operations in Guatemala, stressing the limited and strictly compartmentalized nature of the program in which he is engaged. 5. It should be pointed out that the call on JMBLUG was a move decided upon by Page acting on his own responsibility. The Station introduced Page and crowded the necessary security safeguards. Further meetings, if required, will be held in a secure, neutral place. Graham L. Page (2)"

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala: Current Section: 173. 6/8/54-Telegram From the CIA Station in Guatemala to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida

06/08/54: Telegram from Guatemala Station to Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida: "773. Following from Page. 1. K-Program likely remain stalemated until further pattern of PBSUCCESS clearly emerging. 2. Not a ghost of a chance to sway army high command as long as Arbenz regime going through impressive phase of consolidation with oppositional elements fragmentized and subdued. (2) Government firmly convinced U.S. has abandoned all thought of going it alone and effective collective intervention discounted (Toriello to SWALLOW)*. 3. Recommend K-Program be brought under Station control soonest and Page be authorized return to ZI. (REDACTION) complex can be handled through ESQUIRE. Contact with Swallow will be maintained by Burnett. 4. If at any future time, high command members should indicate desire talk terms with U.S. representative and if situation of manifest strength then favoring our cause, dispatch of PBSUCCESS representative would pose no problem security or otherwise. 5. Request approval for Page return to HQ not later than 10 June. ESQUIRE leaving for U.S. o/a 9 June on short visit and most appropriate effect turn over at that time. 6. Report on Page/SWALLOW meeting in 8 June pouch. (3)" - - - *06/08/54: Cable from Guatemala to Director: Slugline RYBAT PBSUCCESS: "KING Program from Page. SWALLOW reported Foreign Minister Toriello (REDACTION) govt has master card which they intend to play. They will request that ODYOKE (U.S. Government) and WSBURNT (Guatemala) sit in on OAS meeting as litigants and rest of countries will be arbiters. Report in pouch." https://www.cia.gov/readingroom/docs/DOC_0000922626.pdf

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala: Current Section: 175. 6/8/54-Telegram From Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to the CIA Chief of Station in Guatemala

06/08/54: Telegram from Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to COS, Guatemala Station: "3631. Re: GUAT 773. (2) 1. Despite compromise PBSUCCESS moving forward apace. Compromise cost only top echelon and plans that events have invalidated anyway. But mass of organization remains intact and in state of near-readiness. 2. RO’s, organizers, sab leaders presently being launched. They will contact unburned second, third echelon and proceed as planned. 3. Numerous 5-man harassment teams being readied for launching, with mission attack Commies and Commie property, but not attack army. 4. Capacity to air supply friendly internal forces should exist soon. 5. Shock troops moving to WSHOOFS (Honduras) staging sites. High degrees of readiness, both in proficiency and spirit. 6. More leaflet drops, intensified SHERWOOD programs contemplated. 7. It would therefore be regrettable if, by your departure, you would tend confirm apparent impression of setback to PBSUCCESS. On contrary, your mission now to counteract (REDACTION) depression and destroy whatever smugness/fatalism has arisen among army through SEMANTIC compromise. 8. If SWALLOW your sole channel after ESQUIRE departure, make maximum use to convey 'You ain’t seen nothing yet' theme to SMILAX, SUMAC–2 (Lieutenant Colonel Jose Angel Sanchez Barillas), etc. This might begin soonest. Events in next week may make you appear as prophet and man worth doing business with. 9. Would be unfortunate you leave on eve of authentication you have been requesting. 10. Request you weigh foregoing in light security and operational factors and advise your considered conclusions for LINC decision. 11. Also request you attempt retain ESQUIRE in place during forthcoming period."

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala: Current Section: 194. 6/17/54-Telegram From Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to the CIA Station in [place not declassified]

06/17/54: Telegram from Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to Withheld Station: ..."For Page. 1. Regret PAA stoppage and problems your return WSBURNT (Guatemala). 2. Speed with which events moving plus increased vigilance, tensions and general unrest now such that your return inadvisable. 3. Appreciate your disappointment which we share in losing opportunity close in for kill but unavoidable bad break. 4. If you can get documented for DTFROGS (El Salvador), proceed there soonest to stay through 19 June when SWALLOW expected. Try arrange Wellbank solidly placed as local consejo rep. With high DTFROGS rep possibly JURANT. Wellbank met SWALLOW 14 June but believe you can help consolidate his position. 5. Advise if can make arrangements and ETA. LINC will notify (REDACTION). If you unable go DTFROGS return LINC."

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952-1954: Guatemala: Current Section: 251. 6/28/54-Telegram From Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to the CIA Station in Guatemala

06/28/54: Telegram from Operation PBSUCCESS Headquarters in Florida to Guatemala Station: "1. LINC recognizes possible conflict in your receiving orders from two places nevertheless believe action taken on ref A will not conflict too seriously with ref B. 2. Ref C was sent before receiving STANDEL–1’s speech which failed to mention his removal of Communists as reported in GUAT 986 (IN 22794). (5) Thinking here was based on your having a crack in the door to put foot in which could be exploited. Second thought is that SWALLOW should mediate but this not too good as he would have to follow Osorio who is not our man. 3. LINC believes (REDACTION) is better choice than SMILAX to replace STANDEL–1 as closer to being agreeable to recognition of Calligeris (Carlos Castillo Armas) which is important to our objectives. 4. On theory full advantage should be taken of first enemy weakness LINC has directed air strikes for Adam (Guatemala City) afternoon 28 June on TGW transmitter bldg, Matamoros and flak suppression. Anticipate this show of strength will provide substance to any consideration of Calligeris’s position."

Contributors:
Gavin McDonald

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