First of all the report is released after sanitation, that in and of itself should speak volumes as to the important facts which will be missing.
Materials for psychological propaganda: Word of mouth and film, pamphlets folders and news sheets,newspaper and magazines,radio broadcasting(71,000
radio sets were distributed in 1951) listen to mainly by professionals, commercial, students, military and women.
It goes on to give several examples of the letters the broadcast stations received,which must have been part of the propaganda and regularly read on
the air, however it is curious to me how the writing styles seem very similar and not at all what I would have expected from a lower to middle class
early 1950's Guatemalan, Honduran peoples style.
In doing so they were swaying the general public to the views of a more intellectual stand point. The general theme was to make note of the classical
music being much better than the salsa type local music, and to praise the cultural discussions and sway peoples desire to learn more about
international affairs and less interest in the local independent stations and political agendas.
There were 23 radio stations 3 of which were government owned. The other 20 stations had such strict government regulations and operated on temporary
licences. If they spoke out against the government stations they would be easily shut down and replaced.
The Government transmitter "La Vos de Guatemala" (TGWA/TGWB)was used to implement certain agenda such as pre political elections. TGWA/TGWB was
efficient in organizing the central American states from Cuba and the Dominican Republic Caribbean to the Central America.
Under the Arbens government, Guatemalan stations worked relatively free from excessive government control or interferences. Although following legal
codes, they put pressure nonetheless on lukewarm or anti-administration stations.
As of 1951 programs operated by government had the following findings:
1. CONTROL- Emergency Restrictions: during time of disorders and national emergencies.
Political Coverage: Following the electoral codes on the surface however giving no air time to opposition and giving no excuse for the
opposing party or candidates when they were scheduled to speak and were kept from doing so.
Domestic Services: Broadcasting patterns, after dissemination of TGWA/TGWB they no longer used the station to cast their agendas and
Anti US and British Propaganda: Allowing open disdain for the imperialists and capitalists, Mexican communist leader viciously attacks the
US in what was the longest speech on record. Attending this rally was President Arbens.
Anti French sentiment as communistic views enter the radio mix.
And finally this document moves on to comments and suggestions:
1. Radio broadcasts can be useful psychological weapons against communists and communism in Guatemala.
2. Radio propaganda should be directed to disproving a governments claim and providing manufactured evidence when necessary.
3.Discrediting individuals who are in opposition.
4.Warning individuals who could be used by opposing agenda.
5.Citing examples and praising intellectuals who comply with agenda. (Such as the letters to the radio stations above.)
6. Discrediting the government on grounds of inefficiency, incompetency, etc. Particularly for being 'duped,deceived and trapped in its present
unfavorable international situations.
7. Building up the impression that there is no advantage in supporting against the agenda, and giving the impression that the opposing agenda will
stop at nothing short of the total destruction of their way of life.
8.Praising the energy of the new direction of Latin American women who had gone into teaching, intellectual accomplishments and and warning against
false attractions which oppose the agenda.
Entertainment broadcasts to support propaganda :
Allowing entry into places such as New York to purchase music.
Utilizing better access to music which would get people to listen to their stations and have a greater chance at having listeners exposed to
It then closes with the desired types of music, poetry and dialog to get the desired results from a wide range of listeners at different times of day
Archivists notes: I found this quite disturbing for several levels, it reminds me greatly of the political arena which we see today unfolding around
the 2008 election processes and the current world military conundrome with the middle East, Russia and China.
We always hear about propaganda and have a basic understanding of how it affects us all, yet this is a birds eye view of an experiment well done and
which accomplished its goals without a hitch.
This was implemented successfully long before television or the World Wide Web, done primarily through radio transmission, I cannot help wonder how
much more affective it can be done today in our technologically advanced states of entertainment and communication.
I highly suggest reading this document for yourself as it is in good shape and of excellent quality, this report is just a short summary of the
experiment and its far reaching implications to the people it affected and still continue to control.
While reading I googled some information on Jacobo Arbenz Guzman President of Guatemala from 1951-1954
Also found this piece of interest regarding the
1954 Guatemalan Coup d'etat if you are interested.