316 Cabinet Minute

Minute 228 SYDNEY, 31 October 1939

WAR AIMS The Prime Minister [1] read to Cabinet a cable which had been received from the Dominions Office, indicating that the French Government desired the British Government to express its war aims.

[2] The Dominions Office wished to ascertain the views of the Commonwealth Government. [3] The Prime Minister read a cable [4] in reply which he had despatched, without consultation with Members of the Cabinet, over the weekend, as there was no opportunity to consult Ministers. This cable was discussed by the Cabinet and finally approved. The importance was stressed of not saying or doing anything which might imperil the close unity between France and the Empire. There was general agreement upon the point that Germany must on this occasion be defeated in the field. As to the position after that event, the matter was left in abeyance pending the receipt of a further cable from Great Britain.

It was indicated by the Prime Minister that he had initiated discussion between the various Dominions by sending a copy of his cablegram to the Prime Minister of each Dominion.

1 R.G. Menzies.

2 Document 307 3 Document 310 4 Document 311

[AA: A2697, VOL. 3A]