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US declassifies documents on Latin America policy

President Eisenhower told his top advisers in 1954 the US was in Latin America to fight ''a war . . . against communism,'' according to documents declassified by the State Department.

In a National Security Council meeting in November 1954, Eisenhower said: ''You must think of our policy in Latin America as chiefly designed to play a part in the cold war against our enemies. Russia would shortly step into any vacuum if we allowed one to develop in Latin America.''

One declassified national intelligence estimate, prepared under CIA director Allen Dulles, warned that the presence in Latin America of United Fruit Company, which was influential in the Eisenhower administration, was increasingly resented by independent Latin American governments.

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