292 Evatt to Chifley

Cablegram 723 WASHINGTON, 5 June 1946, 8.20 p.m.

MOST SECRET

For the Prime Minister alone.

1. There have been several further alterations of draft agreement on Lend Lease and I am arranging that you should receive revised and completed document [1] together with comments by Moore on the alterations. All of these alterations he regards as being satisfactory to Australia. He also proposes to sign an accompanying letter regarding Army supplies in the Pipe Line stated to be paid for since United States terminated Lend Lease.

[2]

2. My general feeling is that you made a very satisfactory bargain. [3] However there has been much bustling in the last twenty four hours and I thought it best that you should have complete picture before you. Moore, who is about to leave the Commonwealth Public Service, is in a somewhat nervous condition and I am naturally anxious that you yourself should have a final and up to date perusal of documents before we become finally bound.

3. I propose to object to any inclusion in the United States draft press statement to aviation negotiations which have nothing whatever to do with Lend Lease settlements. [4]

4. When you approve document there will be very little delay in formal signature of agreement.

1 Document 294.

2 The letter required an undertaking to return the payment, made inadvertently by the U.S. Army despite agreement to waive payment for 'pipeline' goods, i.e. goods transferred between 2 September and 31 December 1945.

3 See Document 224. During Chifley's visit to Washington he and Acheson agreed upon a compromise settlement of US$ 27 million. A lively account of the telephone conversation in which the bargain was struck is given in H. C. Coombs, Trial Balance: Issues of My Working Life, Sun Books, Melbourne, 1983, pp. 86-7.

4 The draft noted simply that negotiations were proceeding towards a bilateral agreement on civil aviation.

[AA:A3195, 1946, 1.14783]