3 Burton to Doig
Cablegram 20, CANBERRA, 7 July 1948, 2.45 p.m.
It would be useful if you made short immediate unofficial visit to Argentine. You should first advise informally Brazilian authorities that you are making short personal visit. While you are in Argentine, you should make as many official contacts as possible with Foreign Office with a view to making a full report on the following:
1. As you know Arce was President of Special Assembly and he may be considering standing for next meeting of General Assembly in Paris.
Last session there was a South American elected President and two in succession will not be supported. Moreover, the honour is due to Australia, and Dr. Evatt was narrowly defeated last year. It would be unfortunate for Australia and Argentine to be opposing each other, and you should therefore take the opportunity of making known the Departmental view that we feel we should be able to expect the support of Argentine on this occasion.
2. Australia and Argentine have more in common economically than Australia and any other South American country, and it has frequently been suggested we should have direct representation. Would Argentine be agreeable to acceptance, in view of our dollar and staff difficulties, not of a full diplomatic mission at this stage, but of a commercial representative with diplomatic status.
3. What purchases are being made in Argentine in relation to United States E.R.P.? Are there any agreements between United States and Argentine on the matter? 4. What is Argentine present attitude to wheat agreement? 5. Any other matters you consider important.