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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume III

465 — General Freyberg (London) to the Prime Minister

page 496

General Freyberg (London) to the Prime Minister

11 August 1945

1. At a War Office conference held on 10 August we discussed the participation of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the CORONET project. Planning was subject to confirmation by (a) the New Zealand Government of its agreement to the use of the New Zealand Division for CORONET, and (b) General MacArthur to the inclusion of the New Zealand Division in the British Commonwealth corps to fight under his command. Provisional planning was completed for the concentration of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the United Kingdom for short leave before proceeding to the United States of America for equipping and final training.

2. As a result of the news of the Japanese surrender offer1 these above plans for CORONET are now at a standstill. I understand that the Dominions Office has already approached the New Zealand Government to find out New Zealand's reactions to the treatment of Japan.

3. As I can save a great deal of time by negotiating direct with the War Office, where the control of redeployment and shipping is centralised, I propose to remain in London pending receipt of your policy directive for the future employment of the 2nd NZEF. I would, however, appreciate your guidance as to the probable date of receipt of such a directive as, if an appreciable lapse of time is likely, it would be more convenient for me to return to Italy in the meantime.