180 Commonwealth Government to Lord Cranborne, U.K. Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs

Cablegram 791 CANBERRA, 11 December 1941

MOST IMMEDIATE MOST SECRET

Your telegram 812. [1] Commonwealth Government desires Portuguese Government to issue authorisation to Governor [2] to make local request for military assistance and Australian Forces would give all assistance within their limited resources. We agree similar authority to invite Dutch assistance should be issued.

We think there is ample evidence of Japanese designs upon territory as scheme of Japanese strategy includes taking possession all possible bases and Japanese have already established so-called civil air service between Dilli and Pelew.

For this reason Portugal might well be requested to invite Allied troops to protect her possession even at this stage.

1 Document 178.

2 M. de A. Ferreira de Carvalho.

[AA: A981, TIMOR (PORTUGUESE) 3, i]