509 Mr R. G. Menzies, Prime Minister, to Lord Cranborne, U.K. Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs

Cablegram 382 19 June 1941,


Your cable No. 422 [1] regarding movement of United States warships into the Pacific. Hope that view previously expressed by us [2] relating to the minimum force which United States should be asked to retain in the Pacific will not be overlooked.

In the absence of a firm joint statement to Japan in which the United States fully participates any reduction of United States Pacific Fleet below the point dictated by Naval prudence remove[s] most powerful deterrent to Japanese action and might even encourage it.

I would appreciate advice as to how the discussions with the United States regarding joint declaration are proceeding. As I came through Washington I found both President [3] and Cordell Hull [4] receptive on this matter, but with a slight reservation about going the full distance.

I hope that urgent and real emphasis is being given to this question.


1 Document 508.

2 See Document 446.

3 Franklin D. Roosevelt.

4 U.S. Secretary of State.

[AA: A981, PACIFIC 8, i]