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

Cablegram 376 LONDON, 2 June 1940, 10.45 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE MOST SECRET FOR THE PRIME MINISTER

Impression growing next German move will be against French. Grave doubts as to French capacity to hold Somme line which in many places very thinly held. They have formally asked for three British divisions immediately and strongly request air assistance.

War Cabinet deciding tomorrow what can be agreed on as to the necessity of giving maximum possible support from point of view of French morale being cracked.

Italy. Has been decided to hold up large number of Italian ships arriving at Gibraltar and Aden in the course of the next few days with valuable cargoes of war material as felt that if Mussolini has decided on war essential cargoes should not be received; if he has not decided unlikely that action will provoke more than strong protest.

BRUCE

[AA: A981, ITALY 60B]