117 Minute from Taylor to Woolcott

Jakarta, 27 March 1975


Portuguese Timor

One point you might consider making in the Department (if you agree with it) concerns the Department's view that UDT/FRETILIN ha[ve] compromised on their demands for immediate independence. As you know the program of the coalition calls for the immediate recognition of de jure independence. From an Indonesian viewpoint this is almost as bad as immediate independence. From the information available to us it is the Portuguese who have watered down the coalition's proposal, not the coalition itself. There is no evidence that the coalition has weakened in its demand for immediate recognition of de jure independence.

If I am correct the significance of this point is that we should not be arguing that UDT/ FRETILIN is reasonable and compromising and that therefore APODETI should be prepared to cooperate with the Portuguese and work with the other parties. There may be good reasons for arguing that APODETI should cooperate, but the reasonableness of the coalition on the independence issue is not one.

[NAA: A10463, 801/13/11/1, viii]