272 Mr S.M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London, to Mr R.G. Menzies, Prime Minister

Cablegram 5.39 (extract) LONDON, 9 October 1939, 8.05 p.m.

CLEAR THE LINE MOST IMMEDIATE

FOR THE PRIME MINISTER MOST SECRET

Draft reply was examined by the War Cabinet this morning but considered unsatisfactory and a sub-committee of the Prime Minister [1], Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs [2], Chancellor of the Exchequer [3] and First Lord of the Admiralty [4] are redrafting it. I am expecting available ten tonight and will cable to you immediately. The Prime Minister of Canada [5] sent further cable today suggesting that President of the United States [6], the King of Italy [7] and the King of the Belgians [8] should be asked to formulate a basis for a European settlement.

Not considered likely that consent to act could be obtained particularly from the President of the United States and even if consents could be obtained, proposal not regarded as practical.

BRUCE

1 Neville Chamberlain.

2 Lord Halifax.

3 Sir John Simon.

4 Winston S. Churchill.

5 W.L. Mackenzie King.

6 Franklin D. Roosevelt.

7 King Victor Emmanuel III.

8 King Leopold III.

[AA: A981, WAR 45B, i]