202 Australian Government to Butler

Aide Memoire CANBERRA, 19 February 1947

In relation to the proposed use of Manus by the United States authorities, it would appear that the two Governments might be taken to be agreed in principle on the following points:-

1. That the United States service authorities will be invited to continue to use facilities at Manus.

2. That in return the Australian service authorities will be invited to use facilities at certain places under United States control, the United States having suggested Eastern Samoa and Canton Island. [1]

It is now suggested that United States and Australian representatives should be appointed to examine arrangements in detail including retention and maintenance of necessary equipment and any financial questions that arise.

The above examination would involve no final commitment on the part of either Government but would be a practical method of helping the negotiations towards a satisfactory conclusions. [2]

1 See Volume X, Document 316.

2 On 21 March Acheson promised Makin that the matter would be given prompt attention. On 2 April, however, the Embassy in Washington reported informal advice that an urgent review of US bases and defence commitments was being undertaken by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

[AA : A6494 T1, SPTS/1/1]