291. Telegram From the Embassy in Indonesia to the Department of State1

2859. For Asst Sec Green from Ambassador. Subj: Indonesian Initiative on Cambodia. Ref: Djakarta 2763.2

Malik told me this morning (I met him with dawn patrol on golf course) that he is shooting for conference of 12 or 14 Asian nations at either Kuala Lumpur or Djakarta in early May.
I asked Malik whether he was trying to convene preparatory meeting before main conference in early May. He replied in negative. I asked him which countries would be sponsoring conference. He said Thailand, Japan, New Zealand, and Indonesia. I asked him whether Australia would also sponsor. He said there hadn’t been time to get Australian Foreign Minister’s approval when he talked to him but that Australian Foreign Minister had announced approval publicly in last day or two.
Malik said he had met with North Vietnamese Chargé yesterday and asked latter to convey to his Government Malik’s ideas about conference and invitation to attend. Malik said Chargé’s response reflected irritation. Chargé called Cambodian Government illegal, said coup had been arranged by American CIA and that American troops were in Cambodia. Malik responded that GOI information indicated Government of Cambodia legal with approval of legislature. Malik said perhaps North Vietnamese had information on CIA involvement which Indonesia did not have but Indonesia’s information indicated there were no American troops in Cambodia.
Malik said with obvious relish that North Vietnamese are now on defensive and that “we had seized the initiative.”
I told Malik that we were most interested in his efforts and were rooting for him.
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 531, Country Files, Far East, Indonesia, Vol. II. Secret; Immediate; Nodis.
  2. Telegram 2763 from Djakarta, April 20, reported Ambassador Galbraith’s meeting on April 19 with Foreign Minister Malik. Malik had met shortly before that with Suharto to discuss Indonesian ideas on assisting Cambodia. Galbraith reported that “Malik suggested we continue to drag our feet on responding to Suharto on proposal that U.S. replenish Indonesian arms supply to Cambodia. I said I thought it was highly impractical to link U.S. military assistance to Indonesia to Indonesian assistance to Cambodia. Malik indicated agreement and said he had made this point to Suharto. I said I was somewhat concerned however that Suharto felt he should receive response from me to questions he had put to me. Malik said I didn’t need to worry, he had told Suharto he would be talking to me on Cambodia.” Galbraith concluded “there is obvious lack of consensus among various advisers to Suharto on how to help Cambodia. I suggest we go along with Malik for a few days.” (Ibid.)