410 Makin to Department of External Affairs and Australian Delegation, United Nations

Cablegrams 1289, 6 WASHINGTON, 20 December 1948, 4.31 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE CONFIDENTIAL

INDONESIA

1. I have just seen Lovett and after outlining our views along the lines of your telegram 1009 [1] asked what the United States proposed to do, (a) Pending the meeting of the Security Council and (b) The limits of the Security Council (c) Through the Committee of Good Offices.

2. As regards the action which the United States would take unilaterally, Lovett said that urgent consideration was being given to the immediate suspension of E.R.P. aid to the N.E.I. (as distinct from the Netherlands). This would probably be done, although no announcement could be made until a decision had been made by E.C.A.

3. Lovett confirmed that instructions had been given Jessup as reported in our 1288. [2] He said that the United States felt that the first objective was a cease-fire. It was then important to obtain facts on which further Security Council action could be based, in particular, the circumstances surrounding the Dutch attack, whether the Dutch had given notice to the Republic and the reasons for the shortening of the ultimatum period. He said that the United States would act as a member of the United Nations and regarded its obligations as a member seriously.

4. As regards the Committee of Good Offices, the United States' view was that it could not continue to play any useful role if it was not supported by its parent body, the Security Council. The United States would not wish to continue as a member of an ineffective body but would prefer to regain its freedom of action without being subject to the limitation imposed on it as a member of the Good Offices Committee.

1 Document 396.

2 Document 403.

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