118. Telegram From the Embassy in Indonesia to the Department of State0
4615. Department pass ACSI, CNO, AFSI. CINCPAC for POLAD. On 5 June ARMA met with Lt. Colonel Sukendro, Chief Army Intelligence, [Page 215] to discuss his recent visit to US weapons demonstration. Sukendro stated demonstration was most impressive and well-planned. He was grateful for excellent treatment and deeply appreciated courtesy and kindness extended by Admiral Stump and Staff.
Sukendro stated that on 27 May in Tokyo, Admiral Stump had indicated US Government had issued licenses for small arms for Indonesian police, aircraft spare parts, communication facilities and shipping. Sukendro then asked if Embassy had received any information re delivery dates. ARMA stated that except for “shipping” State Department had approved considerable number of export licenses. ARMA further explained that approval of licenses completed US Government action with respect to these commercial transactions and that arrangement for payment and delivery should be settled by GOI representatives and US private business companies.
Sukendro then said Admiral Stump had indicated US prepared furnish additional aid provided effective measures were taken by GOI against Communists. ARMA said he would discuss matter with Ambassador. Sukendro agreed and said he would appreciate clarification June 6 since he was required brief President Sukarno.
On 6 June after conference with Ambassador Jones, Cole and Shuman called on Sukendro who opened conversation by saying Admiral Stump had clearly stated the US position and Sukendro inquired if Embassy had received corresponding information. Cole and Shuman replied US support would be responsive to Nasution’s plan to end hostilities, bring about Cabinet changes, and take action against PKI. Attaches also pointed out that action in good faith had been already made by both sides. On our side US influence had been exerted to halt intervention and export licenses had been approved for a number of items. A list of these items was given to Sukendro.
Sukendro then said the inner group (Sukarno, Nasution, Djuanda and Subandrio) would appreciate US detailed planning on token shipment $7 million arms, shipping assistance, civil aviation, service schooling so that US could rapidly deliver upon completion groups next step. They envision this step to be the end of fighting, reshuffling Cabinet to exclude Leftists, and identifiable action to control PKI. Sukendro indicated government reorganization would be in two phases reshuffle Cabinet now and basic changes in government later. He said action against PKI would be continuous rather than a short term affair.
Sukendro said the group feels that they would qualify for $7 million token arms after first step outlined above and it must come fast to support them in their continued moves against the PKI.
Nasution has established a commission of officers to study the needs and determine specific terms to be included in the $7 million arms [Page 216] and in the service schooling. Sukendro said in general terms he could tell us what they initially needed in this category was equipment to support six mobile battalions composed of two amphibious KKO Commando Corps, and four paratroops. He said these mobile units would be needed to move rapidly to counter Communist reaction as the GOI applied pressure. He said the technical assistance should be both formal instruction and technical maintenance to support the initial arming with these weapons and the amount of this technical assistance would depend upon the type and amount of the weapons.
General Nasution desires to go to the US to work out details of future relations and negotiate further assistance after the above US and Indonesian moves have been made and the government is under control. Sukendro warned not to discuss these plans with any one other than identifiable group listed above.
Sukendro further stated following: Major Marsudi of town command would be transferred. Sukendro would inform attachés as soon as decision made on handling Pope case. Menado would be finished soon. Nasution would try arrange interview with Ambassador Jones on June 9. When arms forthcoming air delivery was not only acceptable but welcomed.
Comment by attachés Cole and Shuman: We believe the Indonesian group understands situation and is working in good faith according to plan and that this plan has an excellent chance to succeed if we properly support. To expedite subsequent action list of items in $7 million arms package is requested including conditions and terms of purchase.1
- Source: Department of State, Central Files, 756D.00/6–658. Top Secret; Niact. Transmitted in two sections and also sent to CINCPAC.↩
In telegram CN 5721 to CNO, June 9, Stump commented that he felt the United States must move rapidly to fulfill its commitments to the Indonesian army for assistance. He also raised the possibility of sending a technical military mission to Indonesia, a forerunner of a military advisory group, and suggested that the United States offer to train a selected group of intelligence officers at the rank of captain and major in the United States. (Ibid., 756D.00/6–958) See Supplement.
In telegram 282141Z to CNO, June 28, Stump submitted a detailed outline plan for the implementation of the token aid program for Indonesia for consideration by the JCS. (Department of State, G/PM Files: Lot 64 D 341)↩