333 Shaw to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 443 TOKYO, 12 August 1948

SECRET

Your telegram 330.

Today I gave the Chairman of the Allied Council provisional notice that tomorrow I would place on the agenda for the Allied Council meeting on August 18th, the question of labour legislation in the Japanese Public Service. The United Kingdom Liaison Mission, Tokyo, have asked that I do not confirm the agenda item until they have received the views of the Foreign Office, London. In the circumstance I shall not meantime confirm my agenda items. If United Kingdom agreement received I can ask for special meeting at one days notice.

2. I suggest that you convey to the Foreign Office my views that despite undesirable local repercussion with the Americans which I had said might follow the raising of this matter in public and which the United Kingdom Liaison Mission may overemphasise, I feel strongly that in this instance early discussion in the Allied Council may serve a real purpose in influencing the form of projected legislation to revise Japanese Public Service Laws. The Japanese Government are to consider the draft legislation next week and to await discussion by the Far Eastern Commission next month, would probably mean having to accept a fait accompli.

3. As reported, disadvantageous United Kingdom Liaison Mission, Tokyo, do not like to use the Allied Council but this is a clear instance where prompt and public discussion may influence the occupation policy and I believe they should be pressed to concur.

4. Should the United Kingdom not agree to support my raising this issue, I could still initiate discussion as representing Australia and presumably New Zealand but it is much preferable not to make such distinctions. Please advise your views and any indication on the prospects of views of other British Commonwealth Governments concerned.

[AA:A1838/278, 478/2/5, i]