856d.01/10–1449: Telegram

The Consul at Batavia (Abbey) to the Secretary of State 1

top secret   priority

812. For Butterworth eyes only. Beam, in first formal interview with Lovink lasting over hour, received full treatment and was given darkest view re present situation here described as critical. Doubtless this intended produce desired effect provoking pressure on Republicans but at same time consider that comments highest responsible resident Dutch official must be given due account.

According Lovink, Republicans being forced to yield pressure extremist nationalist elements composed leftist TNI, revived Tan Malaka PKI and Darul Islam, all stated to be leagued together according developing Communist plan. Republicans described as being persuaded political necessity of making concessions now to these influences with hope they may later master them when sovereignty achieved. Lovink considered this vain hope since extremists apparently gaining control. Doubted Republican and federation Hague delegates informed true situation.

Lovink said Djocja Sultan called on him this morning present virtual ultimatum demanding withdrawal and concentration Dutch forces in residencies and districts throughtout Java, including negaras. Sultan silent on question present police remaining but Lovink thought latter would stand little chance against TNI which would move in. According Lovink, Sultan stated Republicans could no longer be responsible avoidance serious incident in event non-acceptance his proposal made with full Republican authority. Lovink told Sultan he could not consider proposal which he would have to transmit his government. Said he had not yet reported his government pending meeting this evening his military staff to consider status whole question cease-fire and local administrative arrangements.

In reply repeated suggestion, Lovink stated matter too basic to be referred to UNCI deputies and military observers here since this would lead to taking of positions and press leaks. Insisted he required highest government instructions. Said had obtained Sultan’s promise no publicity, impressing on him seriousness repercussion in RTC. In reply further questioning and warning against precipitate action, Lovink said Dutch military would take no overt military steps and he acknowledged his course to be a move to gain time and to obtain possible withdrawal Republican proposal.

Some of Lovink’s statements to Beam completely out of line best information here, such as assertion 15,000 Tan Malaka and 15,000 [Page 527] Darul Islam forces working together West Java. Lovink asserted several times absolutely nothing to be done here for moment since situation would soon become matter for governments. It appears his aim to make it so, taking advantage of seemingly extravagant and precipitate Republican demands. Put Beam under pledge his statements be confined most restricted circle and no specific steps be initiated Washington or Hague before his report to Dutch Government which would doubtless immediately inform Cochran. For sake future relationships Dutch here, request this be observed. Lovink adamant insisting bypassing local UNCI. Beam and I unable leave for Jogja before Tuesday, but will keep in touch with Lovink and will endeavor impress on Sultan through Dow need for restraint.

  1. Repeated in telegram 549, October 18, 2 p. m., to New York (USUN).