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118 Evatt to Makin

Cablegram 1326 CANBERRA, 16 September 1946


Reference Washington 1222. [1] Japanese whaling. Please approach
State Department and make urgent representations along following

1. If United States feels that our request for Allied expedition
would involve delay and other difficulties, it should be a
S.C.A.P. expedition completely manned by Allied crews. Australia
is in a position to provide at least a substantial proportion of
crews. It seems certain that in conjunction United Kingdom,
Australia, New Zealand and Norway could provide total complement.

It is understood that the vessels could be adapted to use by non-
Japanese crews. We would in any case stipulate:-

(a) That these arrangements will be confined to the one season

(b) That early consideration will be given to the prohibition of
Japanese participation in whaling in the Antarctic, at least for
the duration of the occupation.

(c) That Japanese whaling facilities will be subject to
consideration not only in connection with the reparations but also
the prospective peace settlement.

2. In connection with the S.C.A.P. order of 23rd August
authorising the conversion of a tanker [2] it is understood that
the United Kingdom Ambassador has been instructed to inform the
State Department urgently of United Kingdom dissatisfaction with
this development and to endeavour to secure:-

(a) Cancellation of the S.C.A.P. order of 23rd August.

(b) Issue of instruction to S.C.A.P. that no further decisions
affecting whaling should be taken without prior consultation.

It is desired that you make similar representations to the State

3. For your own guidance we feel that the bedrock minimum is that
the expedition should be under strict control of Allied personnel,
that Australia with a territorial interest in the Antarctic must
have a status at least as great as that of the United Kingdom and
Nor-way and that no Japanese personnel should be tolerated. The
participation of any Japanese crew would be open to grave
objections, including the setting of a precedent for future
operations by Japanese and additional reasons referred to in our
1215. [3] If it is objected that the ships are unsuited to Allied
personnel, reconditioning should be directed at once.

1 Arguing that attempts to cancel the proposed Japanese whaling
expedition would be neither justified nor successful, the U.K.

Govt had proposed a request, in concert with Australia, New
Zealand and Norway, for safeguards lest it constitute a precedent
for Japanese whaling and result in friction with British and
Norwegian expeditions and contravention of international whaling
regulations. While generally supporting the U.K. approach, the
Australian Govt had urged that it be an Allied, rather than a
S.C.A.P. expedition (cablegram 316 to the Dominions Secretary,
dispatched 27 August). Cablegram 1222, dispatched 3 September,
reported that U.K. representations to the State Department had
been made, with some modifications in the light of Australian
views, but that the U.K. Govt had maintained its stand in favour
of a S.C.A.P. expedition, chiefly because organisation of an
Allied expedition would involve delay, and the possibility of
Soviet Union obstruction in the F.E.C.

2 Work on the tanker would not be completed in time for the
1946/47 season. The U.K. Govt interpreted the order as a
demonstration of intention to rehabilitate Japanese whaling

3 Document 78.

[AA:A1067, P46/10/10/3/1, i]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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