368 Lord Caldecote, U.K. Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs, to Commonwealth Government

Cablegram 203 LONDON, 13 June 1940, 1.06 a.m.

SECRET

My immediately preceding telegram.

As regards the questions of command and administration of that part of the 2nd A.I.F. which will shortly be serving in this country, we assume that His Majesty's Government in the Commonwealth of Australia will wish the principles set out in your telegram No. 91 of 9th March [1] to apply, subject to such modifications as may be necessitated by the fact that this contingent will be detached for the time being from the main body of the 2nd A.I.F.

Geographical considerations and increased difficulty of communication between this country and the Middle East since the outbreak of the war with Italy suggest that the Commonwealth Government will wish the powers, duties etc. which are defined for and vested in the G.O.C. the 2nd A.I.F. as regards the Australian Forces in the Middle East to be delegated to and exercised by the O.C. the Australian formation in this country.

Should be glad of very early expression of the views of the Commonwealth Government on this point.

1 Document 96.

[FA: A3195, 1.4202]