267 Officer to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram Hague 134 THE HAGUE, 8 August 1947, 10 p.m.

MOST IMMEDIATE TOP SECRET

My telegram 130 [1] paragraph 1.

I have just seen the Minister for Foreign Affairs. I reported his attitude favours proposals in your telegram 100 [2] and Prime Minister's statement [3] in my immediately preceding telegram 133.

[4]

2. Though polite as usual he was frigid in manner, impatient and tired. He described his colleagues as being incensed at Australia's unfriendly attitude and inclined to press for some action to demonstrate their feelings. They resented, particularly, some statement at yesterday's Council which is unknown to me. [5]

3. I went over again all the material in your telegram 100 to show that our action was in no sense 'unfriendly' but done with object of ending a situation which all Australia (and most of the World) condemned. I urged that the way to solve the problem was co- operation and not recrimination which would get us nowhere.

4. I cannot pretend that the Minister was satisfied. I fancy some of his colleagues have uneasy conscience and so resent criticism and opposition and are pressing for some demonstration of displeasure with us.

5. He ended by repeating several times a plea for breathing space vide paragraph 3 of my telegram 133.

1 Document 257.

2 Document 242.

3 Document 255.

4 Document 266.

5 This is presumably a reference to Hodgson's remarks on 4 August rather than any statement on 7 August (see Document 261, note 3, and Document 265).

[AA:A1838/274, 854/10/4, ii]