415 Beasley to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 308 LONDON, 11 November 1947, 6.15 p.m.


Subandrio, London Representative of Indonesian Government, called on me on 10th November for the first time.

2. After discussing generalities Subandrio said his Government wanted to know the view of the Australian Government as to the future of the Indonesian movement. They had appreciated our sympathy and help in the past. The Indonesians had hopes of the Committee of Three but they must make up their minds as to the future. They could not rely unduly on paper agreements with the Dutch, they wanted to see a change of heart. They believed the Dutch Government would be prepared to send a delegation to Java to negotiate but Van Mook had dissuaded the Dutch. They wanted to cooperate with the Dutch but were perplexed. They knew they would win, [that] was only a matter of time, but the obstacles were depressing.

3. I said Australia's general policy was the encouragement of movements for independence and self-government. When we saw a genuine national movement (as we believed theirs to be from the reports of our Representatives in Java) we wished to help it to realise its objectives and to establish strong relations of friendship from the beginning. We knew their difficulties and felt that they were right in wishing to have the cooperation of the Dutch who we thought, however, would do well to emulate the British. I did not have your latest views on the situation but I suggested the Indonesian Representative in New York should see Evatt.

4. Incidentally Subandrio mentioned that Sjahrir is still in Cairo.

[AA:A1838/278, 401/3/10/1, ii]