236 Note by Bruce of Conversation with Robinson
Robinson came to see me-a farewell visit before his departure. He
opened the conversation by a few graceful references to the
invaluable work I was doing and how greatly it was appreciated.
This attitude on his part makes it difficult not to be a little
cynical with regard to humans.  Robinson then went on to talk
about Evatt, in a most patronising way. He said Evatt was greatly
improved on this trip and that he had had no trouble at all this
time. The only doubtful moment he said was at one stage in
America. This must have been the time when he, Robinson, was
cabling frantically to Bracken. 
We then discussed the question of the forthcoming election and
Robinson told me that he had received a telegram from Massy-Greene
 which suggested there were grave doubts that the Government
would get back. I expressed my surprise at this view although I
said that from what I had heard from the Editors who were over
here  [I] had rather changed the view that I had formed, namely
that the Government would certainly get back with an increased
Robinson's attitude was rather that he did not think Massy-Greene
was very closely in touch with politics at the present time and he
doubted whether his views could be relied upon. He expressed his
own opinion as being that the Government would come back with an
Robinson then proceeded to tell me that there was no chance of the
Prime Minister coming over here, basing this view upon the fact
that Mr. Curtin had taken so strong a line with regard to Menzies
coming back here when he was Prime Minister.  Robinson
suggested that only in the event of a complete easing of the
situation in the Pacific could the Prime Minister feel justified
in leaving Australia.
He then indicated, however, that Beasley would probably be coming
and that if he did, he, Robinson, would be coming too as he had
given a promise to the Prime Minister he would do so, although he
was getting somewhat tired of beating up and down the world.
As far as I could follow it, the position seems to be that
Robinson has established the legend with the present Government
that it is necessary for the success of visits of Ministers to
this country that they should be chaperoned by him. This, if true,
is most unfortunate as it would be very much better if Beasley
came here without having Robinson in his train.
Otherwise nothing of any interest arose.
Robinson, as usual, assumed an attitude of great cordiality
towards myself, but I would not trust him a yard.
[AA:M100, JULY 1943]