227 Mr R.G. Menzies, Prime Minister, to Mr S.M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London

Cablegram unnumbered n.d. [c. 15 September 1939],

SECRET AND PERSONAL

I have been much exercised about the establishment of our legation at Washington to which I attach great importance. It seems to me that an Australian Minister to the United States could perform an invaluable function if he were able to contribute towards a better British/American understanding and in particular the development of a growing sense of American responsibility for the integrity of another white and English-speaking country on the Pacific Basin.

I may tell you confidentially that so seriously do I regard this matter that before War broke out I gave serious consideration to whether I should not resign Primeministership and go to America myself.

Would like you to consider whether you should not accept Washington appointment yourself. As former Prime Minister and man of international reputation your appointment would undoubtedly be regarded as supreme compliment to America and it would be possible to make an adequate appointment to London.

Do not hesitate to give me your views quite frankly but I feel very strongly that during the next year or two Washington will be the key of the situation.

MENZIES

[AA:CP 290/6, ITEM 1]