298 Chifley and Drakeford to Noel-Baker

Cablegram 222, CANBERRA, 21 August 1948, 12 noon

MOST IMMEDIATE SECRET

Your cablegram No.216 dated [13th] August. Berlin Airlift. In view of the position stated by you, Commonwealth Government has approved of 10 R.A.A.F. Dakota aircrews comprising 40 personnel with Commanding Officer being provided. Arrangements accordingly are being made for the first batch of 20 to leave Sydney on 24th August by Qantas Empire Airways Constellation and for the remainder to travel on Constellations leaving 28th and 31st August.

These crews have been withdrawn from a permanent R.A.A.F. Dakota squadron here. Consequently and in accordance with your advices that they will be kept together and retain their Australian identity, it is desired that they be retained in that form as crews in one R.A.F. squadron.

[AA : A461, D350/1/4]