92. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Indonesia0

3300. Your 4175.1 From your recent messages it appears that General Nasution and Prime Minister Djuanda feel that until there has been cessation to the activities of the dissidents it will not be possible for them to bring about the contemplated changes in the Cabinet or to take action against the Communists and that in fact a military stalemate exists. This being the case it would appear that the best course of action would be for cessation of military activities in order to permit the anti-Communist elements in Djakarta to take the contemplated steps in attainment their objectives which in essence are the same as those of the dissidents.

In addition to presenting the verbal statement (Deptel 3301)2 you should also explore with General Nasution (or Djuanda, in your discretion) the possibility of a cease-fire during which Nasution would be in a position to take such action as he contemplates. As we see it events could follow in approximately this order:

If General Nasution agrees to a cease fire the Secretary at a press conference could make a statement along the lines suggested by Foreign Minister Subandrio to the effect that the U.S. Government hopes that a settlement of the rebellion will be brought about soon and peace and stability restored to the area and suggesting at the same time that both parties agree to a cease-fire.
It is hoped General Nasution and Sumual would then reply openly to the Secretary’s suggestion accepting a cease-fire and also undertaking that during the cease-fire period there would be no build-up by either side. We have no assurance that Sumual would accept a ceasefire, but believe it worth a try.
During the cease-fire period Nasution would take such action as he contemplates to bring about a change in the Cabinet and against the Communists.
General Nasution should be told that if effective action is taken against the Communists he can be assured of receiving U.S. military and economic support. You should reiterate that a token shipment of military equipment totaling approximately $7 million could be made on [Page 164] short order and that in addition we would be prepared to assist in other fields such as shipping, civil aviation, training in Service Schools.
Once action had been taken against the Communists we would hope that the two parties to the present struggle would seek an amicable settlement of their differences. We assume this would be possible since it would appear to us that the objectives of the dissidents and of Nasution and the Army and other anti-Communists on Java is the same, that is, to stop the Communists in Indonesia.

FYI: The Secretary will probably not have a press conference before Tuesday3 next week. We hope it would be possible to conduct the necessary discussions in Djakarta in time for a statement to be made by him at that time assuming of course Nasution accepts the suggestion. In view of the seriousness of the situation however we believe that we should move as expeditiously as possible.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 756D.00/5–1258. Top Secret; Niact; Limit Distribution. Drafted by Mein, cleared with Parsons and Robertson, and approved by Dulles. Repeated to CINCPAC.
  2. Document 91.
  3. Document 93.
  4. May 20.