756D.94/49: Telegram

The Minister in the Union of South Africa (Keena) to the Secretary of State

34. From a conversation I had this morning with the Prime Minister and the Minister without Portfolio, I gathered that General Smuts will take initiative in proposing that the governments of the Dominions and possibly the Dutch East Indies appeal directly to the United States for assistance in opposing any Japanese encroachment on the East Indies or in the southern Pacific. The proposal may embrace the suggestion that Singapore be taken over jointly by the Dominions and the United States as a naval base.

General Smuts expressed himself as very concerned over the possibility of the Japanese gaining control of the Indian Ocean which he said would mean the end of the Union of South Africa.