440 Critchley to Burton
Letter BATAVIA, 17 June 1949
PEACE AND ORDER
With the completion of the evacuation of remains from the Dutch military cemetery in Jogjakarta on June 14th, there is nothing to prevent the immediate restoration of the Republican Government.
However, the Netherlands delegation, while agreeing that a cease- hostilities order will only be issued after the Republican Government is returned to Jogjakarta, is clinging to the argument that there must be a published agreement, regarding the terms of the order and its implementation, before the restoration.
2. On the other hand the Republicans point out that this argument is not supported by any of the documents, and that the Republican delegation has from the outset consistently maintained, in conformity with Security Council opinion, that decisions could only be taken after their Government has assembled freely.
Republicans have also, quite reasonably, pointed out that to decide on the cease-hostilities agreement now and thus present their Government and the TNI with a fait accompli would seriously weaken the position of the Republican leaders and greatly reduce the chances of implementing an agreement.
3. For some time it appeared as if a deadlock would ensue.
Although the matter has not been discussed formally, I feel sure that the Commission (at least by a majority) would support the Republican position. Van Royen is aware of this. Consequently, he has been ready to look for a compromise but has been embarrassed by the die-hard views of the army and some of the civilian advisers (such as Gieben). The latter have been quick to argue that the failure of the TNI officers to come to Batavia exemplifies the lack of control by Republican leaders over the army. In my opinion this argument is not justified. The TNI will not take part in the negotiations until the Republican Government is operating freely in Jogjakarta and regular consultation between the Government and the TNI command is possible. For example, Simatupang undoubtedly feels that, particularly in view of his leading part in the TNI evacuations after Renville, he should not take an individual responsibility for the cease-hostilities agreement now. If the TNI are properly consulted before an agreement, and if the agreement adequately safeguards the existence of the TNI, there should be no major problem between the army and the Government. General Sudirman has as good as said as much in a private letter to President Sukarno. As late as 17 June the Netherlands delegation has officially stated that Republican military advisers will be free to wear their uniforms in travelling to Batavia and during their sojourn in the town. This is clearly designed to defend the delegation against any charges of responsibility for delay.
4. As I mentioned in my telegram No. K.317 , Van Royen has also been concerned at the task of explaining to the Netherlands Government why (contrary to their expectations) there will be no agreement prior to the restoration of the Republic in Jogjakarta.
It is surprising that the Netherlands Government should have been misled on this point.
5. It was to help Van Royen that Cochran made his compromise proposal that Hatta should write a personal letter to Van Royen confirming the principles included in the three cease-hostilities documents already agreed upon by the delegations. The Republican delegation is not opposed to the compromise and is consulting Sukarno and Hatta at Bangka today. Meanwhile Van Royen is explaining the situation and seeking instructions from The Hague.
6. Incidentally, the Netherlands army authorities made a typical effort to create further difficulties on the cease-hostilities documents. On military advice the Netherlands delegation submitted on Wednesday evening, 15 June, revised drafts of the three documents. Revisions proposed for the cease-hostilities order and the proclamation, which mainly stressed cooperation for the maintenance for peace and order, were reasonable and have been incorporated in a modified form. However, the revisions proposed for the regulations for the implementation of the cease- hostilities agreement (attachment I ), were entirely unacceptable to the Republican delegation and the Commission. In any event, the unsatisfactory sections of these proposed revisions have been thrown out and only minor amendments accepted. It might be reasonably conjectured that Van Royen only submitted the revised drafts to appease the military advisers and Gieben.
7. In view of the decisive stage reached I am enclosing with this letter a complete set of the latest documents ( Attachment II