501.BC Indonesia/10–1449: Telegram

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


813. Gocus 808. Reference Usgoc 433 (Ushic 27).2 Netherlands note delivered Assistant Secretary contains series of general statements which appear to be partially based on understandable concern regarding present Netherlands tactical situation, but also contains exaggerated view of political situation which has always existed in some measure within Republic. It has always been known that there are strong elements professing allegiance to Republic which have been opposed to securing of independence by negotiation rather than force of arms. These groups may be either rightwing or leftwing in character, but they have not refused their support to Republic Government in its policy of negotiation at Hague and, despite frequent verbal expressions of impatience, have not created any disturbances. Republican leaders have always so far been able to handle these elements and to allege now that Republican administration under Sukarno and Hatta is either so weak or so inept that it is allowing itself to be undermined by extremist elements is equivalent to bringing into doubt entire basis on which conference Hague is being conducted and on which US has in past lent its support, with other nations, to Republic at Lake Success.

It is, of course, true that any undue delay in RTC settlement would play into hands of those who criticize Hatta Government for policy of peaceful negotiation with Dutch. Budiardjo said today, for instance, that political critics are becoming more vocal and TNI more [Page 528] impatient and that considerable sentiment exists within Jogja Government for adjourning RTC and continuing it in Batavia after very brief recess to allow travelling time, such adjournment to take place unless RTC were successfully concluded by October 31. This solution not regarded as ideal and only being suggested as possible way out if RTC cannot be concluded within next two or three weeks.

When Netherlands request to Department is analyzed, it appears that we are being asked to make strong high level approach to Republican Government on basis of vague allegations which would almost certainly be instantly denied by Republicans and identified by them with Netherlands military intelligence of which we would then be thought to be the spokesmen.

Have spoken with Beam and Abbey at length concerning this question, importance of which is recognized by all of us. Suggested to Beam and Abbey that since they intend in any case to proceed Jogja Tuesday in order pay formal call on Sukarno, excellent opportunity exists to review entire situation with President, bringing into conversation such portions of Netherlands’ note to Department as deem suitable subject of reasonable inquiry on part of new US representative desirous of full information on local situation. Abbey and Beam concur. Signed Dow.

  1. Repeated in telegram 899, Ushic 30, October 17, 8 p. m., to The Hague.
  2. See footnote 3, p. 520.