Eggleston to Evatt

Letter (extract) WASHINGTON, 15 January 1945

The point of view of the American delegates [1] as disclosed is very important for us and my anticipations as to their views on ‘Government of dependencies’ were fully confirmed. I think that 80% of the American delegates are in favour of the immediate independence of Malaya, India and Burma, with of course the Philippines. Nothing else would they say be consistent with the Atlantic Charter. Owen Lattimore [2] spoke of ‘sand bagging independence with so-called self government’. I have the greatest respect for the American schools of International Affairs but practically none have ever handled anything and they are blinded by science with all the ineptitude which comes of lack of experience. What they do not understand is that these Colonial Empires are part of the structure of the Pacific Region on which any security system must depend and if they are dissolved the succession communities will be immature and incapable of upholding any security system. I pointed this out in my address to the University of Virginia on my way home. I am to speak at Columbia early in February and will elaborate it. I do not suggest that these Empires should remain commercial Empires, but that they adopt a policy of economic development and raising of living standards and accountability to an International Authority. A Dutch delegate said that the Netherlands would agree to a system of accountability. I found a lot of support for the Australian and New Zealand Agreement among Canadians, French and others.


1 i.e. delegates to the Institute of Pacific Relations Conference held at Hot Springs in January.

Eggleston attended as an observer.

2 U.S. academic; political adviser to the Chinese President, Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, 1941-42, and Deputy Director, Pacific Operations, U.S. Office of War Information, 1942-44.


[AA:A1066, P45/153/2, i]