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

123 — The Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

The Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

19 January 1942

Following from Prime Minister for your Prime Minister:

In amplification of my telegram [No. 121], following are proposals for the machinery in London to secure the full and continuous association of the Australian, New Zealand and Netherlands Governments with the whole conduct of the war against Japan. A Far East Council shall be established on a Ministerial plane. I would preside, and other members would be the Lord Privy Seal3 (who is my Deputy on the Defence Committee), Duff Cooper, and representatives of Australia, New Zealand and the Netherlands. The Australian member would presumably be Earle Page, and the New Zealand representative might be the High Commissioner4 to begin with. There would also be a page 135 Dutch Cabinet Minister. The Council would be assisted by a staff group of Dominions liaison officers in consultation with the United Kingdom joint planners. The duties of the Council will be to [group mutilated – focus?] and formulate the views of the represented powers to the President, whose views will also be brought before the Council. Do you agree? I am also consulting Curtin and the Netherlands Government.

3 Rt. Hon. C. R. Attlee; Lord Privy Seal, May 1940 – Feb 1942.

4 Rt. Hon. Sir William Jordan, PC, KCMG (at this date the Hon. W. J. Jordan); High Commissioner for New Zealand in the United Kingdom, 1936–51.