263 Embassy in Washington to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 1079 WASHINGTON, 4 October 1948, 8.20 p.m.


Indonesia. Your 842. [1]

State Department have been advised by Netherlands Embassy that Netherlands Government will accept Cochran proposals as basis for negotiation with the same reservation as Hatta, i.e. without committing themselves to the substance in whole or in part. They will also give sympathetic consideration to Republican conditions (your 824 [2] paragraph 5), provided that Republicans give assurances on Opium smuggling etc.

2. State Department have not had confirmation from The Hague or Batavia, but have no reason to doubt information which they regard as 'good news' and as shift in Dutch position due to 'full force of United States Representations'.

3. United States hope that Hatta will co-operate by agreeing to commence negotiations at the earliest possible moment and will not raise further obstacles. United States would welcome any steps you can take to that end.

4. United States have been studying the problem of transport for some time. The only available United States vehicles are in Manila or Tokyo. They have refused to supply the Dutch (who are themselves short of transport) because of the situation in Indonesia. For this reason they would find it difficult either to supply transport themselves or to ask the Dutch to do so. They were surprised at the suggestion that there might be transport at Bangkok. United States supplied vehicles to Siam for the rice programme some time ago but doubt whether it is in good repair even if Siamese would agree to release.

5. State Department asked informally to-day whether Australia would be in a position to send medical supplies if Dutch agree to facilitate entry to Republic.

1 Dispatched on 1 October it instructed the Embassy in Washington to use cablegrams conveying the text of Documents 260 and 261 as background information for its discussions with the State Department.

2 Cablegram 824 was dispatched on 23 September and conveyed the text of Document 250.

[AA:A1838, 403/3/1/1, xix]