694.001/3–1551: Telegram

The Ambassador in the Philippines ( Cowen ) to the Secretary of State


2785. For Dulles from Cowen.1 While security and reparations are both questions related to Philippine attitudes toward Japanese and Japanese peace treaty, I would be unable attempt assess extent to which inclusion Philippines in Pacific Security Pact might soften Philippine attitude on reparations unless I also know what terms of pact would be and who would be the other members. If Japan were also to be member, Philippine reaction might be negative from fear that Philippines would become junior partner possibly with Philippine troops expected under certain circumstances serve under Japanese commanders. If US were only member of pact able bring strength to membership, and sense security afforded by pact probably would not be great as we already are publicly committed defend this country against outside aggression. If on other hand, Australia and New Zealand were also members and Philippines were afforded treaty guarantees [Page 180] against aggression from a resurgent Japan [as] well as against attack from other quarters, then Philippines might reconcile itself with less ill-grace to realities of reparations situation. Again if Philippines not included as original member of any such pact, much of its value as agency for reconciling Philippines to realities of reparations situation would be sacrificed as President Quirino has been advocating a Pacific pact for last two years and his amour-propre would scarcely permit him accept with good grace situation in which Philippines could not be one it [of] its original members. In passing I Would add that Philippines’ neurotic anxiety re security is rooted so deeply that assurances and pacts can mitigate but not eliminate it, and that Philippines wants not security in place reparations but security and reparations.

[Here follows the remainder of this telegram (printed on page 926).]

  1. This telegram is a reply to queries contained in telegram 2048 to Manila, March 8, p. 904.