224 Note by Mr S. M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London, of Meeting of Dominion High Commissioners

Extract LONDON, 10 May 1940, 10 a.m.

German invasion of Holland, Belgium and Luxembourg officially confirmed.

The Belgians have appealed for assistance to the Allies and British and French troops are already moving into Belgium.

We had some discussion as to the counter measures that we could take and I said I presumed that we were getting planes into Holland and to operate from their aerodromes.

Eden's [1] reply, however, was 'No-that owing to the amount of supplies, ground organisation and so on, it was not possible to do that, and also owing to the fact that the Dutch had refused to co- operate in staff talks before the invasion'.

I put it that surely we could do something in the direction of getting our planes in and following them up with supplies to the ports as the Germans would have to do the same thing, although their communications would be [by] land.

Eden, however, obviously did not know anything about the subject and it was no use pursuing it.

I then said I presumed we were immediately bombing Germany and stressed the effect of bringing home to the Germans that they could not make these attacks without any repercussions in their own country.

Eden said that that question was being discussed at the Cabinet meeting.

I urged the necessity of speed in any retaliatory measures we took.

1 U.K. Dominions Secretary.

[AA: M100, MAY 1940]