170 Lord Cranborne, U.K. Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs, to Sir Geoffrey Whiskard, U.K. High Commissioner in Australia

Cablegram 338 LONDON, 10 October 1940, 9.25 p.m.

IMMEDIATE MOST SECRET

My telegram of 8th October, No. 334. [1]

Plan which we propose for conversations in London and Washington is as follows:-

We are appointing a senior representative of each of the three Services to meet in London forthwith with United States and Netherlands Service representatives available here. After short preliminary discussion, our representatives would proceed to Washington, probably accompanied by a non-Service Chairman, and discussions would then be resumed in Washington with United States and Netherlands representatives.

As regards meetings in London, we are suggesting to Dominion High Commissioners concerned that if they so desire we should welcome the presence of suitable Dominion Service representatives at talks.

As regards discussions in Washington, we understand from His Majesty's Ambassador [2], who has been in touch with the Australian Minister [3] on the point, that a staff delegation from Australia is ready to proceed to Washington at once. If the Canadian and New Zealand Governments should so wish, we should of course be glad if they could send similar delegations to Washington to participate in conversations.

On the assumption that the above scheme is adopted, we should hope that discussions in Washington would start in from two to three weeks' time.

I should be glad if you would inform the Prime Minister [4] in the above sense and let me know his views.

1 Document 165.

2 Lord Lothian.

3 R. G. Casey.

4 R. G. Menzies.

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