14 Commonwealth Government to Lord Cranborne, U.K. Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs
Cablegram 467  CANBERRA, 23 July 1941
MOST IMMEDIATE MOST SECRET
Your M.172. 
Commonwealth Government is fully in accord with conclusions set
out in paragraph 4 of your telegram under reference.  As you
are aware, we have always attached highest importance to gaining
assurance of collaboration of United States in course of action in
restraint of Japan. Now that the United States Government has
decided to adopt severe measures in event of Japanese move in
Indo-China, we feel strongly that whole object of our policy in
Far East over past year would be negatived if British Empire now
lagged behind United States in effectiveness or determination of
its own counter measures, and same consideration would apply to
any attempt at this stage to dissuade United States from
proceeding to contemplated lengths. We emphasise, however, need in
our opinion for utmost frankness in present exchanges with United
States Government in sense of paragraph 4 (3) in order that there
can be no possibility of misunderstanding. 
1 Repeated to the Canadian and South African Prime Ministers and
to the N.Z. Acting Prime Minister as nos 4, 52 and 272; and to the
Ministers to the United States and Japan as nos 75 and 4.
2 Dispatched 22 July. On file AA : A981, Far East 20B, i.
3 This paragraph stressed the U.K. Govt's belief that it was
important to co-operate in measures which the United States
proposed to take against Japan if it occupied Indo-Chinese bases.
4 Paragraph 4(3) read: 'That if we are called upon to go to
lengths which involve plain risk of war with Japan, every effort
should be made to obtain the clearest possible indication from
United States that we can count without reservation on their
active armed Support.'
[AA : A981, FAR EAST 20B, i]