199 Quinn to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram Hague 15 THE HAGUE, 8 February 1949, 9.10 p.m.

SECRET

INDONESIA

Request from the Federalists for information regarding the Netherlands Government's intentions and Cochran's visit have intensified the search for a way out of the present impasse.

Cabinet is to meet today [1] to decide on the next moves and its decisions will probably be notified to Cochran tonight.

2. The Dutch have latterly tended to leave the initiative with the Federalists who appear to be gaining the status of the third party in the triangular negotiations. Moreover the Dutch have been hampered by the anomaly they have themselves created, on the one hand treating the Republic as having ceased to exist as such and on the other implicitly recognising Republican power by their hesitation to release leaders. There is however growing realisation of the fact that the Republicans can justify their non-acceptance of a cease-fire on the grounds that until the Dutch observe the terms of the resolution [2] the Republicans can hardly be expected to use their authority to stop guerilla activities.

3. Despite Government denials (my telegram 12 [3]) reports that a new Dutch plan will be produced continue to circulate. A more likely development appears to be a modified application of the present plan [4] possibly with the omission of interim period in the transfer of sovereignty.

1 A record of the meeting of the Netherlands Cabinet on 7 February is given in Rijks Geschiedkundige Publicatien, Officiele Bescheiden Betreffende de Nederlands-Indonesische Betrekkingen 1945-1950, Volume XVII, The Hague, 1992,pp.439-52.

2 Document 168.

3 Document 180.

4 i.e. the so called 'Beel Plan' (adumbrated in Documents 192 and 196). The Beel Plan envisaged(a) the formation of an Indonesian Interim Federal Government by Republicans and Federalists based on the BIO decree; (b) an interim period of not more than two months during which time the Indonesian Federal Government and the Netherlands Government would work out agreements on the Netherlands-Indonesian Union, economic and financial matters and defence; and (c) the transfer of sovereignty to the United States of Indonesia after which the agreements would come into force and elections would be held. See summary in Department of state, foreign Relations of the United States, 1949, vol. VII, Washington, 1975, pp.233-4.

[AA : A1838, 403/2/3/9, i]