The British Minister (Hall) to the Assistant Secretary of State (Acheson)

Dear Mr. Acheson: I thank you for your letter of July 23rd on the subject of the proposed agreement between the British and the Thai Governments and note that, subject to the observations which you make regarding the oil supplies, your Government would see no objection to the concluding of the proposed agreement providing for an allotment of a minimum of 1,500 tons of rubber per month to the British Government.

We have now received from London the text of the proposed draft agreement which Sir J. Crosby is being instructed, subject to the concurrence of your Government, to submit to the Thai Government. This text is set out in detail in the attached memorandum9 and you will note that the conditions governing oil supplies differ materially from those in the outline of the proposed agreement as communicated by Sir J. Crosby to your Minister in Bangkok. My Government took the same view as you have done, that the quantities of oil proposed were too high, and more especially that it would be highly undesirable to undertake to make available supplies of aviation spirit for military purposes.

The quantities now proposed do not accord, category by category, with those set out in my letter of June 4th, though the total (taking into consideration the reduced amount of crude oil or its equivalents) is somewhat lower. They have been arrived at after a more detailed investigation of what may be regarded as Thailand’s normal needs.

As explained in the Memorandum, His Majesty’s Government are anxious to secure the concurrence of the United States Government [Page 229] in the plans now proposed, and I hope that in view of the revisions which have now been made it will be possible to secure this as a matter of urgency. A message received as this letter was being drafted suggests that Sir J. Crosby may find it necessary to proceed forthwith. I have therefore communicated to him and to the Foreign Office in London the points made in your letter of July 23rd. It seems to me that London has gone a long way to meet the points which you have raised.

I note what you say with regard to the prospects of your own negotiations, but I hope that the Thai Government will be sufficiently far-sighted to appreciate that the prospects of United States assistance warrant further efforts on their part to meet your requirements. You will see that in order not to prejudice your negotiations, it is proposed that the British Agreement with Thailand should be for two months duration only, renewable automatically over a period of one year (commencing on July 1st) pending conclusion of a United States-Thailand agreement.

Yours sincerely,

Noel F. Hall
  1. Not printed.