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50 Draft of Treaty

Draft, Canberra, 17 February 1951


Draft Treaty[1]

(For consideration by the Governments of Australia, New Zealand and the United States of America)
The Parties to this Treaty,
Reaffirming their faith in the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and their desire to live in peace with all peoples and all Governments, and desiring to strengthen the fabric of peace in the Pacific Area,
Noting that the United States already has arrangements pursuant to which its armed forces are stationed in the Philippines, and has armed forces and administrative responsibilities in the Ryukyus, and upon the coming into force of the Japanese Peace Treaty may also station armed forces in and about Japan to assist in the preservation of peace and security in the Japan area,
Recognizing that Australia and New Zealand as members of the British Commonwealth of Nations have military obligations outside as well as within the Pacific Area,
Desiring to declare publicly and formally their sense of unity, so that no potential aggressor could be under the illusion that any of them stand alone in the Pacific Area, and
Desiring further to coordinate their efforts for collective defence for the preservation of peace and security pending the development of a more comprehensive system of regional security in the Pacific Area,
Therefore declare and agree as follows:

The Parties undertake, as set forth in the Charter of the United Nations, to settle any international disputes in which they may be involved by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security and justice are not endangered and to refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations.

In order more effectively to achieve the objectives of this Treaty the Parties separately and jointly by means of continuous and effective self-help and mutual aid will maintain and develop their individual and collective capacity to resist armed attack.

The Parties will consult together whenever in the opinion of any of them the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened in the Pacific.

Each Party recognises that an armed attack in the Pacific area on any of the Parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional processes.

Any such armed attack and all measures taken as a result thereof shall be immediately reported to the Security Council of the United Nations. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security.

For the purpose of Article IV, an armed attack on any of the Parties is deemed to include an armed attack on the metropolitan territory of any of the Parties, or on the island territories under its jurisdiction in the Pacific or on its armed forces, public vessels or aircraft in the Pacific.

This Treaty does not affect and shall not be interpreted as affecting in any way the rights and obligations of the parties under the Charter of the United Nations or the responsibility of the United Nations for the maintenance of international peace and security.

The Parties hereby establish a Council on which each of them shall be represented to consider matters concerning the implementation of this Treaty. The Council shall be so organised as to be able to meet promptly at any time and may set up such subsidiary bodies as may be necessary to accomplish its purposes.

The Parties recognise that this Treaty may be more effectively implemented in association with other States and groups of States not parties to this Treaty. The Council, established by Article VII, shall therefore maintain the closest possible relations with and consult with other States in a position to further the purposes of this Treaty and to contribute to the security of the Pacific Area.

The Council shall also co-ordinate its planning so far as possible with that of other regional organisations and associations of States of which one or more of the Parties are members.

This Treaty shall be ratified by the Parties in accordance with their respective constitutional processes. The instruments of ratification shall be deposited as soon as possible with the Government of Australia, which will notify each of the other signatories of such deposit.

The Treaty shall enter into force as soon as the ratifications of the signatories have been deposited.

This Treaty shall remain in force indefinitely. Any Party may cease to be a member of the Council established by Article VII one year after notice has been given to the Government of Australia, which will inform the Governments of the other Parties of the deposit of such notice.

This Treaty in the English language shall be deposited in the archives of the Government of Australia. Duly certified copies thereof will be transmitted by that Government to the Governments of each of the other signatories.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the undersigned Plenipotentiaries have signed this Treaty.

DONE at __________________ this __________________ day of
________________ 1951.

1 The US record of Dulles's talks states that Spender presented the text of the draft Treaty on 17 February to the meeting of Dulles, Australian and New Zealand Ministers for External Affairs and staffs and that the text incorporated changes adopted by a Working Party on 16 February. Information regarding the composition of the Working Party was not found on Department of State files and has not been found in Australian records. See Foreign Relations of the United States, 1951, vol. VI, part 1, p. 164. Harry seems to have played a large part in its drafting (see editorial note - The Dulles Visit to Canberra) and, by Spender's account, it 'was largely the draftsmanship of Dulles and myself'. See Sir Percy Spender, Exercises in Diplomacy, Sydney University Press, Sydney, 1969, p. 157.

Brigadier H. G. Rourke attended and took notes of the discussions with Dulles on 16, 17 and 18 February and produced the following summary of the events. Rourke reported that the Australians present were Spender, Watt, McIntyre, Harry and himself. The New Zealand Delegation consisted of Doidge, Shanahan, [Jeffrey] and [Miller],[1] and the American Delegation comprised Dulles, Allison, Satterthwaite, Babcock and Fearey. Owing to Cabinet meetings during the week the talks ran over the weekend. Rourke reports in his opening paragraph (omitted below) that he joined the meeting on Friday 17 February. As 17 February was a Saturday, and since, in his covering minute to the Secretary of Defence, Rourke states that he attended the discussions on all three days he presumably meant Friday 16 February.


2. I understand that before I joined the meetings on Friday, 17th February, there had been certain conversations with Mr. Dulles which were followed by a Cabinet meeting at which Mr. Spender was given certain authority to discuss the abovementioned matters. The further discussions were on the following general lines.

3. Mr. Spender pointed out that Australia was being asked to accept a Peace Treaty with Japan in which there were no limitations on Japanese re-armament. Australia could not accede to this unless there were some arrangements which would provide for her security, and which would offset the dangers involved in a Treaty completely free of restrictions. The nature of the Security Agreement would condition the Australian approach, and our capacity to contribute to the defence of the Middle East would depend directly on the arrangements for security in the Pacific. He said the Prime Minister's view was that, in view of our very friendly relations with the United States, he could not believe that Australia would be put in the position of having to resist the conclusion of an unrestricted Treaty because of lack of security in the Pacific. He felt certain that some acceptable arrangement could be made. From our point of view a tri-partite arrangement between the United States of America, Australia and New Zealand would be preferable, and it was essential that provision should be made for consultation on the official level.

4. Mr. Spender summed the position up by saying that the possibility of a multi-lateral arrangement including a number of powers no longer existed, and there was at the moment no substitute for the security which this might afford. The Australian approach was based on the following conditions:-

(a) We could not accept a free Japanese Peace Treaty unless some prior provision was made for our security.

(b) The nature of the arrangement would condition the Cabinet's attitude.

(c) Australia could not accept at this stage a security arrangement which included Japan.

5. Mr. Spender emphasised the dangers which would arise from -
(a) the possibility of Japan subsequently joining the Russian block;

(b) the possibility of communism establishing itself in Japan; and
(c) the possibility of economic factors ultimately leading to close links between Japan and China.

While he agreed that it was essential to attach Japan to the Western powers, there were dangers against which we desire to be protected.

6. Mr. Spender indicated that in the opinion of the Government they would be faced with political oblivion if they went to the House or the people with a Treaty which contained no limitations. It was essential from their point of view that any arrangement to provide for Australian security should be in the form of a formal agreement, the nature of which was a question for discussion. He felt that the United Kingdom's objection to what they called a 'white man's'treaty had no application to a tri-partite arrangement between the United States of America, Australia and New Zealand, which was the type Australia desired.

7. Mr. Doidge said that nothing so far stated by Mr. Dulles had lulled their fears. New Zealand had made certain commitments to Allied strategy in the Middle East and if Japan was allowed to re-arm, safeguards were necessary. Once re-armament was under way without controls its momentum might take charge. Without controls or safeguards there could be no ultimate security. New Zealand had been given assurances by Mr. Truman and Mr. Dulles of assistance in case of trouble. They did not want to commit themselves to contributing to regional defence other than in the Middle East.

8. Mr. Dulles referred to Field Marshal Slim's view that there was no danger in the Far East. He did not share this view and considered that there was an even chance of serious difficulties occurring either in the Far East or in Europe. The situation in the Far East was grave and perilous and if we were to succeed in dealing with it we would require to use considerable wisdom and circumspection. The main problem was to prevent a coalition between Russia, China and Japan.

9. He referred to an exchange of notes which they now know to have taken place during the last war between Germany, Russia, and Japan, in regard to the division of the world into three spheres of influence. They knew that agreement between these three powers had been achieved in this matter except in regard to the allotment of the Persian Gulf. Japan under this arrangement was to have been given a great part of the Far East and the South Pacific, including Australia and New Zealand. Russia was in a position to repeat this offer to Japan. Such a proposition might prove to be very attractive to the Japanese. We could offer only a precarious existence on the four main Japanese Islands.

10. He did not wish to minimize the danger or to suggest that the proposed approach through a free Japanese Treaty, and the type of association between the United States, Japan, etc., at which they were aiming, was necessarily a safe solution. It was a question of playing a large fish with an undesirably light tackle. However, responsibility for keeping Japan out of the communist camp lay primarily on the United States. If America was to have the responsibility they must, to a large extent, use their own judgment as to how best to discharge it; and unless they were themselves fully convinced that the policy was the correct one the chance of success would be small. America did not propose that there should be no limitation on Japanese re-armament because they liked that arrangement. But they are convinced that if restrictions were included in the Peace Treaty, we would all fail to achieve the main object. America had no confidence whatever in the possibility of achieving useful results by writing limitations into the Treaty. He referred to the failure of the Treaty of Versailles and to the fact that this experience has had a marked effect on public opinion in the United States; and he suggested that, owing to its distance from those events, that part of history had not had the same effect in Australia.

11. Mr. Dulles said that he was confident that, assuming Japan agrees to the presence of American troops in Japan in the post treaty period, the United States of America will be able to exercise a very extensive influence on future Japanese development. Restriction of imports of raw materials which Japan would require for major re-armament would effectively check aggressive policies. International controls are already in existence. They are exercised at present by America and other Allied powers and would afford a useful means, if required, by which unnecessary re-armament could be checked. It was not desirable to establish any other organisation for controlling Japanese imports. Japan must share in the matter of raw materials with the free world. If she feels that we are all under the same disability where shortage of raw materials exist, the situation would probably be acceptable to her.

If Japan accepts a free Treaty combined with the presence of American troops, etc., and thus moves towards the Western camp, it must be recognised that this is a dangerous step for her to take. This should lead to continued Japanese dependence to some extent on the United States, which will have far more effect than writing strict limitations into a Treaty. In relation to the Peace Treaty, Japanese national pride is the most important factor. He summed up by saying, in effect, you must trust us and we must have belief and faith in our own policies. In the opinion of the United States of America, the position would be quite hopeless if they are forced to write restrictions into the Peace Treaty.

12. Mr. Dulles dealt with the present outlook in Japan which he said was essentially pacifist. This mood might not last but it was a satisfactory basis on which to work at the present time. There were widespread Japanese objections to altering the Constitution with regard to armament, but he considered that the Japanese people would accept eagerly the idea of raising a force for collective security as against raising national balanced forces. In these circumstances, America would supply major naval and air protection and the Japanese Forces - Navy, Army and Air - would be designed for local defence.

13. It might appear to be strange, but the problem may not be preventing Japan from re-arming, but persuading them to accept the need for a limited re-armament. The United States of America had in mind 4 or 5 divisions with a maximum of 10, together with some tactical air force particularly in relation to coastal reconnaissance, prevention of smuggling, etc., and naval forces suitable for coastguard work and the close defence of their coast line. At present Japan was being protected at the expense of the American Treasury, and, through the Occupation Force, she was receiving a quite considerable invisible import of dollars. The danger was that the Japanese, realising the economic advantages of the present position, would find excuses for not contributing to their own protection. Mr. Dulles said that the United States were not willing to keep land forces in Japan much longer.

14. The real reasons for adopting the policy proposed by America were difficult to explain to the general public, in fact the public could not be told of their policies and objectives. He recognised, however, the Australian and New Zealand political difficulties, and he clearly understood that America was not being asked by Australia, in connection with a security arrangement, to accept any commitment that they did not have today.

15. Mr. Dulles said that he left Washington with broad authority to make a five power pact including the United States, Japan, the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand. This proposal had been considered and passed by certain Committees, experts in the State Department, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and so forth. However, he received the United Kingdom's re-action in Tokyo through Sir Alvery Gascoyne (sic), which threw them somewhat off balance. In view of United Kingdom opposition they did not feel they wanted to proceed with that proposal. They were now in a position where it was not possible to deal with the problem during the tour with any finality. He said he thought there were four possibilities -
(a) A series of bi-lateral arrangements.

(b) A triangular arrangement coupled with the Philippines.

(c) A triangular arrangement including only the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

(d) The original proposals.

Finding a suitable form might prove to be difficult.

16. Mr. Spender pointed out that Australia had not been consulted with regard to the United Kingdom objections and did not necessarily accept them. They were matters for serious considerations, not objections. Mr. Doidge took the view that New Zealand would desire to secure United Kingdom agreement to any arrangement which might be made. Mr. Allison said he was under the impression that the United Kingdom would have no objection to a tri-partite arrangement.

17. Mr. Spender considered that the United Kingdom objections were met by a tri-partite arrangement. It was recognised, however, that Japan should ultimately be joined in a more general arrangement in the Pacific.

Assistance in the Middle East was a responsibility of both Australia and New Zealand, and it was essential that the security arrangements should permit of global commitments by Australia and New Zealand outside the Pacific area - either in the Middle East or Malaya. It was clear that Indonesia would have no part in any arrangement of this kind which was a reason for restricting it to a tri-partite agreement. He understood that Sir Esler Dening believed that the objection based on a possible adverse effect in South-East Asia would be met by a tri-partite arrangement and possibly some re-assurances with regard to future policy in that area. This was not an insuperable difficulty if our intentions were properly conveyed to countries on the Asian mainland, etc.

18. Mr. Allison considered that the reasons for bringing in the Philippines would be understood except possibly in Japan. From the United States' point of view Japan is of primary importance. However, he made the point that control of Japan would be much easier if she were in the 'club', and from the Australian point of view those who are in the 'club'have a say in forming its rules.

Mr. Spender felt that if we were wise we would aim at bringing Japan ultimately into the 'club'. At present, however, this was politically unacceptable. It might also have serious consequences in certain South-East Asian countries. Public opinion might re-adjust itself in time, but the inclusion of Japan at present was not a possibility from the Australian point of view. He did not regard the inclusion of the Philippines as a major difficulty and neither did Sir Esler Dening.

19. India's objection to a Pacific Pact was mentioned, and Mr. Spender took the view that we could not control our actions on the views of one man.

20. Colonel Babcock referred to the adverse effect of long postponement of Japanese entrance to the 'club'since she was accepting a grave military risk by aligning herself with the Western powers. She also would desire to be included in some security arrangement.

21. Mr. Dulles referred to the fact that under the Vandenberg Resolution Japan must herself be in a position to contribute to her defence before she qualified for inclusion in any type of mutual assistance pact. Japan must ultimately be included. From a purely military point of view she is in a dangerous position, as an attack on Japan was in his opinion more likely than attacks in South-East Asia. It was essential that the defence of the Pacific area should be looked at as a whole and not split into compartments.

22. Mr. Dulles suggested that the substance of a tri-partite Security Agreement might be looked at. He agreed with Mr. Spender's suggestion that they should look carefully at the possibility of including something on the lines of Article 2 of the United Nations Agreement. He considered that a simple Treaty leaving room for development so as to include Indonesia and countries on the mainland of South-East Asia would be preferable. He said that the United States did not contemplate anything as elaborate as NATO and would not desire to duplicate it or its organisation.

23. The title of the Pact was discussed. 'Pacific Pact'was obviously unsuitable and there appeared to be agreement that something like 'Canberra Security Treaty'might be the most desirable name to adopt.

24. A draft Security Treaty was drawn up, and it was agreed before the discussions ended that this represented a suitable basis for further consideration. (A copy is attached.)

25. Mr. Spender said that, subject to the prior conclusion of a satisfactory security arrangement, he was prepared to recommend to the Government that it should approve of the views put forward in relation to the Peace Treaty by the United States Delegation. Pending agreement, however, on a security arrangement it would be necessary for Australia to reserve its decision on the question of the re-armament of Japan. He put forward a suggestion, however, which was discussed at some length, that Japan might, after signing a Treaty and becoming a sovereign power, enter into a covenant or make a declaration of future good behaviour. It was generally agreed that Japan was more likely to observe a policy of this kind entered into voluntarily after becoming a sovereign power, than restrictions forced on her by the Treaty.

26. Mr. Dulles saw no objection to some such procedure and considered that the Japanese would be quite willing to adopt this idea.

27. Mr. Dulles said that from his point of view he must first have further talks with Allied Governments and then a draft Peace Treaty should be circulated to all concerned. The draft Security Treaty which had been drawn up would help as a guide in drafting a Security Agreement.

28. Mr. Spender said he thought that Australia should further provide -
(a) A memorandum of points, including an expansion of Article 2 of the Charter of the United Nations, which they would like to see included in the Peace Treaty.

(b) The points they would like to see included in a Covenant or Declaration by the Japanese.

29. In view of the fact that he was authorised to discuss only his original proposal, Mr. Dulles handed a letter to Mr. Spender and Mr. Doidge, the text of which was discussed between them, reserving the United States' position, particularly in regard to the inclusion of the Philippines. He agreed to put the Australian views to his Government for favourable consideration.[2]


30. As will be seen from the draft Security Treaty, it is proposed that the organisation on a political level should consist of a Council. The consensus of opinion was that this Council should normally meet in Washington so that it could keep in touch with the proceedings of other international bodies. The military machinery was not discussed in the Conference Room.

31. I had conversations, however, with Colonel Stan Babcock and Mr. Foss Shanahan in relation to this matter. I outlined briefly the development of the United Kingdom/Australian/New Zealand liaison machinery and suggested that it might be desirable in relation to strategic matters connected with our Region for this machinery to be used, and that in this event we would welcome the inclusion of American Service liaison personnel under arrangements similar to those made with the United Kingdom and New Zealand. In addition, however, we would desire to project the personnel of our Washington Joint Service Staff into the Washington machine for consultation on wider strategic matters. This was agreed between us as a desirable objective and it was also agreed that it would be undesirable to set up any joint military machinery on the NATO principle. After some talks with officials of External Affairs, it was generally concluded that this would be the most desirable arrangement. Mr. Dulles spoke to me just before leaving and said that the basis of our ideas had been reported to him, that he appreciated the arguments in favour of this course, and would keep this matter in mind when he returned to Washington.


32. Mr. Dulles said in connection with this matter that they had in mind an ultimate arrangement including Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia and countries on the mainland of Asia, but that there were difficulties at present which he hoped might be overcome. In regard to France, it would be important that the inclusion of France should be balanced by the inclusion of some other Asiatic powers. He again drew attention in this connection to the application of the Vandenberg Resolution which was designed to promote self help and mutual aid and to avoid countries becoming a burden on the United States instead of developing their own capacity. The consensus of opinion was that a wider Security Agreement would ultimately be desirable.


33. Some discussion took place with regard to whether the Nationalist or Communist Chinese Governments should be a party or parties to the Peace Treaty. Mr. Dulles said they had no answer to this question. They considered that this should be their last hurdle and that it was desirable to resolve all other matters connected with the Peace Treaty before attempting a solution of this problem. There was the possibility of both coming in. However, if that was suggested probably neither would be willing to take part'.[3]

1 Rourke named Mr. Walker as a member of the New Zealand delegation. Other sources state that R. M. Miller was a member of the delegation (see Documents on New Zealand External Relations, vol. III, Wellington, 1985, p. 626, and Pacific Pact: The Birth of ANZUS 1949-51, G. B. Stillman, 1989, p. 212). The editors have found no other sources that confirm Mr. Walker was present at the meeting. Stillman also reports that H. P. Jeffrey attended the meeting as a member of the New Zealand delegation, but his presence is not confirmed from any other source.

2 The letter dated 18 February also stated, 'I further recognize that there is an interdependence between the contemplated Japanese peace treaty, which we have also discussed, and the contemplated security treaty in the sense that neither of us would be obligated to accept one without the other', (EATS 77, i). Published in full in Foreign Relations of the United States, 1951, vol. VI, part 1, Washington, 1977, pp. 175-6.

3 A5954/69, 1819/5.

[NAA : A1838, 532/11, ii]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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