251 Mr R. G. Casey, Minister to the United States, to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 15 WASHINGTON, 2 January 1942, 6.07 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE SECRET

Your telegram[s 1102] [1] and 1103. [2]

I have now received following message from President Roosevelt for Mr. Curtin. [3]

(Begins) Mr. Churchill and I have considered your message with urgency which situation clearly demands.

I need not tell you the importance which we attach to the holding of every possible strong point in [the Western] Pacific.

To this end we and our military, naval and air advisers have given urgent consideration to the matter of despatching reinforcement at earliest possible moment. The necessary steps are already under way for flight to Australia of effective air assistance which I hope will arrive in very near future.

We are deeply conscious of the magnificent contribution which Australia has made and is making to common effort and need to replace strength which she has despatched to other theatres.

(Ends).

1 Material in square brackets has been inserted from the Washington copy on file AA:A3300, 219. For cablegram 1102 see Document 214, note 1.

2 Document 214.

3 Prime Minister.

[AA:A981, WAR 33, ATTACHMENT B]