811B.01/10–345: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Consul General at Manila (Steintorf)

798. President Truman issued a statement today33 announcing that he has had a conference with President Osmeña and with Mr. McNutt and Mr. Fortas and that he proposes to confer further with President Osmeña to formulate a broad program of this Govt with respect to the Philippines; that this program will reflect the traditional friendship of the people of the United States and the Philippines and will take into account the heroic and loyal conduct of the Filipinos during the war. The President stated that in preparation for his further conferences with President Osmeña he had asked Mr. McNutt and Mr. Fortas to consult with the President of the Philippines with respect to all matters of mutual interest. President Truman stated that there had been wide speculation as to whether a [Page 1203] date prior to July 4, 1946 will be fixed for declaring the Philippines independent. He further stated that it would be neither just nor fair to the loyal people of the Philippines to proclaim their independence until the necessary program for rehabilitation has been worked out and until there has been a determination of the fundamental problems involved in our mutual relationship after independence; that additional time is also required to enable the Philippine Govt to set its own house in order and to hold a free democratic election.34 Last paragraph of statement reads as follows:

“To assist in the orderly working out of these problems, I am taking this opportunity to state that I do not intend to consider advancing the proclamation of Philippine independence to a date earlier than July 4, 1946, until the necessary measures which I have outlined have been taken.”35


[For a letter of October 8, 1945, by the Secretary of State to President Osmeña inviting participation by the Commonwealth Government in the Far Eastern Advisory Commission, see telegram 106, October 6, to the Chargé in Australia, and footnote 20, page 737.]

  1. For text, see Department of State Bulletin, October 7, 1945, p. 537.
  2. In a letter of December 11, 1945, the Secretary of State informed Harold D. Smith, Director of the Bureau of the Budget, that the Department “perceives no objection” to enactment of S. J. Res. 119, which provided for national elections in the Philippines (811B.00/12–1045). The measure was approved on December 14, 1945, as Public Law No. 258; 59 Stat. 608.
  3. For further statement by President Truman on Philippine independence, released by the White House on November 15, 1945, see Department of State Bulletin, November 18, 1945, p. 813.