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66 Cablegram From Kevin to Watt

Cablegram, Canberra, 17 March 1951


Following received from High Commissioner, London, begins -
Personal for Menzies from Mr. Harrison.

Thank you for your telegram 1582.[1] Following are my comments on your paragraphs 3 and 4. Information set out in paragraph 2 of my 1439[2] seems to be commonly held by Cabinet Ministers here. Indeed Gordon Walker said that Dulles' attitude to Commonwealth was well known, that it was known that he considered it entirely outmoded and indeed had expressed himself in this way. Walker thought that the Philippines was included in proposed Pact to underline fact that United Kingdom was 'washed up' in Pacific. In an entirely informal conversation with Lord Addison[3] several evenings ago he expressed same views.

2. It appears that the policy of the United Kingdom Government is to keep the Treaty on a tripartite basis for the present having as a long range plan inclusion of the Philippines, United Kingdom (Hong Kong, Malaya etc.), India, and other parts of the Commonwealth who have specific interests. If the Philippines were included and others omitted at this stage he is afraid that public opinion will charge the United Kingdom with walking out in a time of crisis on their responsibility to Commonwealth Nations. It seems that they view the proposed Pact as in some sense analogous to the Brussels Treaty[4] which preceded N.A.T.O.'

1 Document 64.

2 Document 59.

3 Lord Addison, Leader of the House of Lords.

4 The Treaty of Economic, Social and Cultural Collaboration signed in Brussels on 7 March 1948 by France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.

[NAA : A4534, 48/2]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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