441 Evatt to Makin

Cablegram E66 WASHINGTON, 9 December 1945, 1.38 a.m.

IMMEDIATE SECRET

1. It is most unsatisfactory that the United Kingdom has so hurriedly agreed to a Three Power Conference the business of which will greatly affect Australia particularly items Nos. 3, 4, 5, and 6. [1] Again there was no adequate consultation. I refer to telegram sent to you regarding Korea and the Far Eastern Commission. [2]

In circumstances our line should be consistent and clear.

2. These discussions will obviously affect directly the Pacific and Japanese settlement. Australia should make a dignified objection not only to any such discussion on any such items without being represented, but also to the fact that the United Kingdom Government knew of the proposals on 26th November and did not inform Australia until 16 days later.

3. Care apparently is taken to associate Canada with item one, atomic energy, similar care should now be taken to associate Australia with items 3, 4, 5 and 6.

4. The United Kingdom Government should not have agreed to conference except on such an understanding and should now be asked from Australia to agree to our representation at the conference or as an alternative not to agree to any proposals on the items mentioned except with Australia's prior consultation and approval.

5. If Duncan had asked Bevin either not to agree to the conference except on the basis mentioned herein, or to delay the agreement until Australia was consulted the situation might have been satisfactorily dealt with, but I feel that the real responsibility lies on the United Kingdom Government and their tactics at their end was very much of a bustling character. Duncan might enquire when after 26th November Canada was first informed of proposal.

1 See Document 438.

2 Presumably Document 435.

[AA : A1066, H45/1016/5/2]