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

Cablegram 229 LONDON, 10 April 1940, 1.57 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE MOST SECRET FOR THE PRIME MINISTER HIMSELF

(In continuation of telegram 228. Part II.) (1) Germany having gone into Norway, unless the Allies can afford effective aid, only a matter of time before Norwegian resistance overcome.

(2) Present position-Germans have landed at Oslo in south from which further operations must start, as presumably with our control of the sea operations at Bergen and Stavanger must be limited to holding ports seized.

(3) Our objective must be to recapture the ports seized before German land advance relieves diem.

(4) What is Chiefs of Staff appreciation of the types of operation of forces required and time necessary to recapture seized ports? (5) Can the Norwegians by armed resistance, sabotage of railways et cetera hold up the German land advance long enough to allow seized ports to be recaptured? (6) If seized ports can be recaptured, will the Allies be able to afford Norway a sufficient measure of assistance to enable her resistance to be continued indefinitely and if not for how long? (7) Could Allied forces maintain any hold on Norway if and when Norwegian resistance overcome? (8) What is Chiefs of Staff appreciation of the position if Germany immediately takes action against Sweden: (a) What form is such action likely to take? (b) What aid could the Allies give Sweden? (c) How long would the Allies take to come to Sweden's assistance? (d) How effective would such aid be? (9) What action (if any) is contemplated by way of diversion (a) to stiffen Norwegian morale? (b) to keep Germany occupied elsewhere? (10) In the event of Italy choosing the present moment to enter the war on Germany's side have plans been prepared for immediate action against her, has an appreciation been prepared of possible action Italy might take and in such event have plans for counter- measures been prepared? Have also asked for information as to how it was possible for Germany to occupy and land forces at principal Norwegian ports hundreds of miles from German bases without any serious interference by Allied naval forces.

BRUCE

[AA: A981, EUROPE 30, ii]