José Santos Zelaya.

The revolution of Nicaragua and the United States online

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of 15.000 dollars. Altschul.*


New Orleans, 7,40 a. m. Nov. 17. President. Managua. War
materials reached Bluenelds appear to be the same advised b} T telegraph
last week as proceeding from Bocas. Ship Ulstein leaves now for Puer-
to Barrios carrying war material. Altschul.

- 49 -

New Orleans, 8,38 Nov. 18. President. Managua. Ulstein will
arrive at Puerto Barrios Sunday to transport 44 boxes rifles 114.000 car-
tridges to a (gasolina) motor that will take them to Bluefields. Guate-
mala uses Port Barrios as base of revolution. Altschul.*

New Orleans, 2,40 p. m. Nov. 21. President Zelaya. Managua.
Transcribe you following: Bluenelds, 15. President Guatemala. If
war material is not received before the 20, revolution must be abando-
ned. Diaz, Cabrera replied: Ulstein with war materials will arrive
in few days. Altschul.*

New Orleans, 11 a. m. Nov. 24. President. Managua. Ulstein
left for Bluefields Monday proceeding from Puerto Barrios; will arrive
to-morrow at Bluefields. Altschul.*


* *

New Orleans, 4,45 p. m. Nov. 29. President. Managua. Situa-
tion here unfavourable to President Zelaya. Permission been granted.
to Juan Estrada to close San Juan del Norte.

Recomend strongly Nicasio Vazquez make headway before arrival
war materials steamer Ulstein.

Salvador Castrillo urged recognition Atlantic Coast independent Re-
public. Altschul.


Washington, 3 p. m. Nov. 6. President. Managua. Department
does not accept explanation: states that its negociations were limited to
Government of Honduras returning steamer to American owners. As
case Yulu assures Government Nicaragua has no right to intervene in
this matter. Rodriguez.))

Washington, 7, 25 Nov. 8. President. Managua. Again expound-
ed to Department reasons of your cablegram; they heed not, and insist
upon steamer being handed over to its owners. By this they think to



i show that you are not master in Honduras. They do not wish to discuss
this matter with Nicaragua. Department assures me that it would be
I prejudicial Honduras and Nicaragua. Rodriguez.

** *

Washington, 7, 30 Nov. 8. President. Managua. Explained Per-
las helped revolution transporting war materials as is confessed by pro-
test addressed Government Honduras. Nicaragua intervenes because
steamer carried Nicaraguan patent and flag. Rodriguez.*


Washington, 5,20 p. m. Nov. 11. President. Managua. Ameri-
can Minister of Costa Rica informs Minister of Foreign Relations United
States neutrality violated flag Nicaragua Costa Rica. Department of
State asks for explanations. Hazera.


Washington, 3 p. in. Nov. 14. President. Managua. Minister of
Relations United States considers unimportant matter frontier Nicara-
gua Costa Rica. Inform Arjona that departure of expedition is tolera-
ted. Detain armament going from Puerto Barrios to Boca del Toro. It
has not yet been received. Hazera.

Washington, 9,30 p. m. Nov. 17. President. Managua. Inqui-
red Secretary of State as to leaving of Ulstein states steamer left for
unknown destination; that Minister Honduras has complained carrying
war materials and Manuel Bonilla to upset Honduras. Consul Altschul
however advised detained provisionally. Continue inquiries Secretary
State received protest Bluefields from the Company against detention
Dictator by revolutionists.

Secretary of State received me cordially. President-honours us
with reception probably Monday. Press publishes President of Nicara-
gua is helping emigrants Honduras. Opening San Juan communica-
ted. Hazera.

- 51 -

Washington, 11,30 p. m. Nov. 17. President. Managua. Corifi- *
dential communication: we are firmly convinced that you ought not to
lose any opportunity of satisfying the American Government. Illfeeling
towards you noticeable inciting Central American diplomats.

0ur opinion is that American Government wil demand satisfaction
and indemnity. Hazera.y>

# *

Washington, 3 p. m. Nov. 18. President. Managua. Secretarj^
of State informs Legation through note that considering death sentence
probable execution American citizens President postpones my reception
until he has full knowledge situation and decides upon attitude of Ame-
rican Government.

Secretary of State has sent vessels to Pacific and Atlantic. Owing ;
to this fact all discussion refused. Consider situation very serious;
rupture certain. IIazera.


Washington, 1,25 p. m. Nov. 18. President. Managua. Last / I
night at 11 p. m., Secretary of State forwarded Rodriguez energetic note j
asking for urgent information as to American case; making every reser-
vation for subsequent attitude ifshey are executed. Am replying at v j
present according to your instructions. American Government replied |
yesterday protest Blueflelds Company that this is expedient to avoid j
blockade. Press comments upon this as first step acknowledgement
belligerency. Attacks Government.

Minister of Honduras in Washington has not received so far reply
memorandum Ulstein. Hazera.

Washington, 1,30 Nov. 20. President. Managua. They advise
departure steamer Imperator yesterday. Secretary of State refuses
protection Blnefields Company. Have furnished press with detailed
information as to legality of facts and I trust that and am hoping justi-
fication by Court of Justice will change present unfavourable opinion.



Washington, 2,30 p. m. Nov. 24. President. Managua. Mexi-
can Ambassador showed last night answer Secretary State to request
Mexican Government for receiving Hazera, which was negative. It is
urgent that you should suggest something acceptable to propose De-
partment. Situation very serious. Tell me if he has sent proceedings
of trial. Rodriguez.*


Washington, 7,40 Dec. 2. President. Managua. Department
sent me passport and note extremely harsh with theats towards your
person and demonstrating that their Government and that of the revo-
lutionist party are agreed. Rodriguez .


Washington, 2 p. m. Dec. 4. President. Managua. They intend
deposing you from power and making 3^011 personally responsible. If
revolution fails land marines. It is said ships have orders not to let
you depart. Gonzdlez.*

Washington, 8,45 p. m. Dec. 1. President. Managua. Situation
ver}' serious here. Confirm to you cablegram Hazera. It is affirmed
that American Government will insist on your resigning. They sup-
port revolution although indirectly but openly: they do not admit of
explanation of execution Americans. It is desirable that some under-
standing should be arrived at. Send me some suggestion as to what
plan to follow. Reply urgent. Gonzdlez.


Managua, 2 p. m. Oct. 19. Minister Hazera. Panama. Advise
Legation Washington steamer left New York before knowing revolu-
tion carrying war material to Bocas del Toro. Investigate and see
that Government Panama confiscates as contraband war for revolution
Coast. Zelaya.*


53 -

Panama, 5,35 Oct. 21. President. Managua. Nicaragua!! war-
ship detained yesterday Costa Rica. Bocas every precaution should be
used Dont weigh anchor. Hazera.*

((Panama, 11,45 Oct. 28. President. Managua. All is arranged
satisfactorily. Olon Panama arms and war materials have not been em-
barked. Send now. Am ready to embark. Hazera.v


Panama, 12,30 a. in. Oct. 29. President. Managua. Minister
Foreign Relations Panama informs that Nicaraguan warship returned to
Bluefields without arms or war material; fruit motor detained. Hazera.v


Panama, 11,45 Nov. 23. President. Managua. President Pana-
ma considers justifiable execution Americans. American Government
cannot establish reclamation. Nicaragua is in the right. Considers
that Government of Nicaragua is on bad terms with American Govern-
ment. This information is confidential. Arjona.

By the mere perusal of the above documents, proceedings and tele-
grams, it becomes quite clear and consistent with what has been already
said that the Nicaraguan Government counted upon the devotion, the full
confidence and decisive support of the .twelve departments of the Repu-
blic out of the thirteen of which it is composed.

It is evident also that the department of Zelaya, the most deflected,
the only one that adhered to the rebel Governor and Intendant was not
entirely on the side of the revolutionists since the most important per-
sons were thrown into prison.

It is equally clear that to create an army the revolutionists had to
have recourse to forced enlistments in Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatema-
la ajmi-khe -United States.

It may be proved to satiety that the war materials and money were


furnished to them by the United States and Guatemala. Steamers of
the United Fruit Company and others bearing the Nicaragua!! flag, as
those of the Emery and Piazza Companies, transported men and ammu-
nition of war in full perfect knowledge and help of the American repre-
sentatives in Central America and with most barefaced cooperation of
Estrada Cabrera and the authorities of the ports of the Union.

It may be seen therefore how the United States and the President of
Guatemala have been the promoters, the authors of the Revolution and
continue to be its supporters and consequently are alone and truly res-
ponsible for so much bloodshed, for the loss of so many lives and so
much property, for all the great harm done to the Republic of Nicaragua,

I have not hesitated to publish in full all' these documents because the
very uniformity of their wording goes to show and confirm that what
all declare assure and palpably prove that the note of Mr. Knox which
I shall now insert has had no grounds, being only the repetition in terms
anything but diplomatic rather indeed harsh an 1 offensive and undoub-
tedly unbefitting one filling the high post of Secretary of State of a Great
Power of the premeditated insults, which for some time past and with
ulterior ends in view the newspapers semi official or subventioned by
the Government of Guatemala addressed to me; taken up also by certain
organs of the venal press of Europe, which in the note of Mr. Knox ap-
pear rather to have been written by Estrada Cabrera until the signatu-
re is reached.

Here it is in textual form:


It is notorious that since the signing of the Conventions of Wash-
ington in 1907, President Zelaya has kept Central America in a cons
tant State of agitation and turbulence; that he has flagrantly and repea-
tedly violated the stipulations of the said Conventions, and by a strong
influence over Honduras, of which the Conventions assure the neutra-
lity, he has endeavoured to discredit those solemn international obliga-
tions to the detriment of Costa Rica, Salvador and Guatemala, the Go-
vernments of which only by much patience have been able to loyally
maintain the solemn compact made in Washington under the auspices of
the United States and Mexico.

It is equally notorious that under the rule of President Zelaya repu-


hlican Institutions have ceased to exist in Nicaragua, except in name; )
public opinion and the press have been quashed and that imprisonment
has been the sole reward for every demonstration of patriotism.

0ut of personal consideration for yourself I refrain from discussing
the painful details of a rule that unfortunately has been a blot in the
history of Nicaragua; and a disappointment to a group of Republics who
need only the opportunity to satisfy their aspirations of a free and ho-
noura'ble Government.

Mindful of the interest of the United States and their participation
in the Conventions of Washington, most of the Republics of Central
America have for some time past called the attention of this Govern-
ment to the irregular state of affairs. There is now added the cla-
mour of a great part of the Nicaraguan people in the form of the Revo-
lution of Bluefields and the fact that two Americans, who according to
information obtained by this Government, were officers in the services
of the revolutionary forces and consequently had a right to be treated
according to modern practices between civilized nations, have been shot
by direct order of President Zelaya their execution being attended accor-
ding to information received with barbarous cruelty. Official information
now comes that the American Consul in Managua has been threatened,
and this' act puts the finishing touch on a fatal course of government
characterized also by tyrany against their own citizens, and up till
the recent outrage against this country had shown itself in a series of
petty annoyances and unworthy acts that has rendered it impossible for
the last few mouths to mantain a Legation in Managua. From every
point of view it is evident that the moment has arrived when it is diffi-
cult for the United States to put off any longer a decisive attitude which
it owes to its citizens, its dignity, to Central America and civilisation.

The Government of the United States is convinced that the present
revolution represents the ideal and wishes of the majority of Nicara-
guans, more faithfully than the Government of President Zelaya and
with its pacific centre is as far reaching as that which the Government
of Nicaragua has sought so cruelly to maintain.

To all this must be added now according to official information
from different sources, there have appeared in the western provinces of
Nicaragua indications of a rising in favour of a presidential candidate
intimately connected with the old regime, in which it is easy to see new
elements that tend toward a state of anarchy which may in time destroy
all source of a responsible Government, with whom the United States


may be able to discuss the compensation for the death of Cannon and
Groce and even make the protection due to American citizens and inte-
rests in Nicaragua hard to realize.

Under these circumstances the President of the United States can no
longer entertain for the Government of President Zelaya the respect and
confidence which should be observed in diplomatic relations, whi^-b com-
prise the desire and possibilit} 7 of maintaining the respect due from one
state to another.

The Government of Nicaragua which you have so far represented
will be good enough to bear the present notification in mind, it will also
be made known to the Leader of the Revolution, that the Government of
the United States will hold them strictly responsible for the protection
of the lives of the Americans as also to the factions that are in posses-
sion of the regions of the East and West of the Republic of Nicaragua.

As to the compensation to be made for the death of MM. Cannon
and Groce, the Government of the United States refrains from exacting
from the innocent people of Nicaragua so heavy a punishment in expia-
tion of faults of a regime maintained by force or to exact from any Go-
vernment that may rise, should it follow a different policy, the payment
of that penalty.

The discussion of this compensation should be made simultaneously
with that of the existence in Managua of a Government capable of aus-
wering the suit.

I.t must also be considered how far the responsibility extends of
those who committed the act and tortures that preceded the execution,
if it should be proved; and the question as to whether the new Govern-
ment is entirely separated from the present intolerable conditions and
is worthy of the confidence that they will avoid the repetition of similar

In such a case, the President of the United States ad a friend of Ni-
caragua and the other Republics of Central America will be disposed
to reduce the indemnity to what is really owing to the parents of the
two men executed and exact the punishment only from those who de-
serve it.

In accordance with this policy the Government of the United States
will temporally suspend its demands for compensation, in the meanwhile
taking the necessary steps for the protection of American interests.

For the assurance of the future protection of American interests and
in consideration for the interests of the majority of the Central Ameri-

- 57 -

can Republics as well as in the hope of strengthening the friendly rela-
tions established by the Conventions of Washington the Government of
the United States reserves for a more opportune occasion the discussing
of the stipulations with which the Constitutional Government of Nica-
ragua may bind itself by means of a Convention to the advantage of all
the Governments concerned to guarantee in the future the maintaining
of the Conventions of Washington and its ideas of peace and progress.

From the above you must clearly understand that your mission of
Charge d'Affaires has concluded and I have the honour to forward you
herewith your passport, should you wish to leave the country.

I should add at the same time that although your diplomatic mission
has terminated I shall have much pleasure in receiving you as also the
representative of the revolutionist party; both as means noii official of
communication between the Government of the United States and the
authorities de facto with whom I shall have to treat for the protection
of American interests, until in Nicaragua there shall be established a
Government with which the United States cau entertain diplomatic rela-
tions. /\nox.

The above document of the Minister of State Knox, so intemperate and
trivial in language as well as incorrect and vulgar in form as false in
argument contrasts strongly with the telegram that the distinguished
Ex-president Roosevelt sent me when the Central American Republic
being leagued in war against me through the instigation of Estrada Ca-
brera his good faith was also questioned.

This great statesman could not pass judgment without the exact
knowledge obtained solely by hearing both parties. And consequently
to the information given by me he replied in the following terms:

Washington, 3 p. m. Feb. 15, 1907. President Zelaya. I thank
you for your kind reply to my despatch of Feb. 11 and I beg of you to
believe in my high appreciation of the admirable spirit in which you
have received and replied to the negociations in the interest of peace.
I should be pleased to offer any help in my power that might tend to a
practical solution of the interesting problem in accordance with the
ideas as to which we are so perfectly agreed. Theodor Roosevelt.*



Mister Knox acted less seriously and in an unusual manner.

In consequence of his false prejudice and the plans and proceedings,
even in their smallest detail, which were to be followed in Nicaragua
being agreed upon as they were with Estrada Cabrera and my other ene-
mies of Central America, he refused to listen to the just explanations
which I, as was my right and duty, legitimately desired to give that
the truth might be know.

To this end I addressed to D. Pedro Gonzalez, special envoy to Wash-
ington for the settling of the Emery affair the following cablegram:

Managua, 8,30 p. m. Dec. 4, 1909. Gonzalez. Washington.

Kindly inform Secretary Knox that I am convinced that his source of

information is unreliable. I ask of the United States to send an honou-

| rable and impartial Commission to come and investigate and if the acts

iV-of my administration have been detrimental to Central America; and if

this could be proved I resign ofh'ce with pleasure. Zelaya.*

As I said before Minister Knox would not lend an ear to my just pre-
tensions but these being firm and sincere for I had nothing to fear being
conscious of the fulfilment of my duty the same request I addressed to
President Taft:

Managua,Dec.7, 1909. President Taft. Washington. December
fourth I sent following cablegram to: Gonzalez. Washington. Inform
Secretary Knox I believe his sources of information are prejudiced. I
request that United States send a disinterested Commission to investi-
gate and if findings show that my administration is detrimental to Cen-
tral America, I will glady resign. Have received no reply.

In order to avoid harm to my country and desiring to place it in a
position to renew friendly relations with United States E have to-day sent
in my resignation to Congress.

As my opponents might consider my presence a disturbing factor, I
propose to show my good faith by leaving Nicaragua and stand ready to
account for my acts. President Zelaya.


This having been decided upon and done, that is having resigned
nobo-ly had a right to doubt that the defense made of myself, in terms
so clear and in the strict manner required by the circumstances of the
case I was far from showing a mean clinging to Power or an interested
defense of the highest office of the Republic.


And I must add that, as will be seen presently my defense was made
only from the first moment that Mr. Knox's note unanimously censured
as arbitrary, was made known to the world.

Nevertheles here is the evidence of my reason, of the reason of justice
which I hope for in the unimpeachable sentence of dispassionate and
serious opinion.

We have read the document of Mr. Knox.

What are his accusations against me?

I think it is worth while to point them out and repeat them in two
colums with the irrefutable comments they deserve without disregarding
one point of the testimony afforded by the documents reproduced in the
preceding pages:

It is notorious that since the sig-
ning of the Conventions of Wash-
ington in 1907 President Zelaya
has kept Central America in a cons-
tant state of agitation and turbu-
lence. So notorious is it indee^l that on

these Conventions being signed one
of the things by them established
was the Arbitration Tribunal of Car-
tago to accuse before the same him
who should disturb the peace in
any of the signatary Republics and
decide in consequence upon the res-
ponsibility incurred. Well then,
Zelaya... has never been accused
before the Tribunal in question by
any of the Central American Repu-
blics nobody could cite a single Cen-
tral American war promoted by me.
during the term of my presidency.
On the other hand so much can-
not be said of the Governments of
the allied Republics because by
playing into the hands of President
Estrada Cabrera to help him to
obtain predominance in Central


America, they have constantly dis-
turbed the peace and were the pro-
motors in 1907 of the war against
Nicaragua when they were defeated
by my troops; in 1908 of the revo-
lution of Honduras and in 1909 of
the recent disturbances their last
attempt; but this time with the
support of the American reinforce-
ments to defeat in Nicaragua him
whom they were unable to defeat
in 1907.

Does Mr. Knox ignore all this?
Roosevelt and Root knew it in 1907
and thus proceeded justly with Ni-
caragua and Zelaya.

Taft and Knox are not ignorant
of it either nor can they ignore it
in 1909, but they have now other
plans and the policy of the United
States is not now inspired with the
respect boasted of in the palace of
Monroe of Rio de Janeiro through
the mouthpiece of the then Minister
of State of North America where he
said: We consider the independence
and equality of rights of the lesser
and weaker members of the family
of nations, as having right to as
much respect as the great empires
and we consider the observance of
such respect as the principal sa-
feguard for the weak against their
opressors. But now it is as I before
pointed ont the right of force that
prevails against the force of right,
although indeed in the long run it
does not triumph, because far above
everything stands the unimpeacha-


ble Supreme Tribunal of public opi-
nion, impartial and noble that
knows ever when to render justice
to him who deserves it and condemn
the real culprit with the stigma of
universal and undying shame.
...that he has flagrantly and re-
peatedly violated the stipulations

of the said Conventions. Quite the contrary may be ga-

thered from the former comment,
the Government of Honduras, Costa
Rica, Salvador and Guatemala lea-
gued against Nicaragua promoted
the disturbances of order and peace
referred to in Central America.
They were therefore the violators of
what had been agreed to, and if
indeed there were other disturbers,
we have seen who they were: the
United States intervening in so un-
correct and partial a manner and
with interested motives under the
pretext of protecting the weak and
exercising its influence for the main-
tenance of peace. The United Sta-
tes moreover have forgotten that

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Online LibraryJosé Santos ZelayaThe revolution of Nicaragua and the United States → online text (page 5 of 15)