Commonwealth Government to Addison

Cablegram 249 CANBERRA, 23 August 1945


Your 305 and D.1481 and 1482 [1]. Control of Japan.

1. We are generally in agreement with your proposals as to the constitution of the Control Council and agree that control should not be linked with occupation zones as in Germany.

2. The Control Council should formulate all policies towards Japan and should, through the Supreme Commander, supervise the execution of the surrender terms. There should be clear and explicit recognition that the Supreme Commander exercises his authority on behalf of all the United Nations at war with Japan and must at all times act under the direction of the powers represented on the Control Council. His position as president of the Council should not imply any derogation from the principle of collective responsibility for policy of Governments which are members of the Council.

3. Concerning execution of policies agreed on by the Control Council, we feel most strongly that Allied purposes as set forth at Potsdam cannot be achieved simply by handing over general administration to existing Japanese authorities. We note that you envisage direct Allied supervision through special executive Departments of certain important matters including military and economic disarmament. We consider that until reliable Japanese democratic elements can be installed, such direct administration by the Control Council will need to be extensive at least in the first stages. We realise that for many purposes it will be necessary to use Japanese administrative machinery on a local basis. It is vital, however, to the success of Allied purposes that no use whatever be made of Japanese administrative personnel prominent in or associated with militarist and fascist organizations and the Zaibatsu (see our full statement of policy in our 225 of 10th August). [2]

4. As already indicated in our telegram 245 [3] of 21st August, we welcome the proposed inclusion of Australia as full participant in control authority but this necessarily carries with it in our view full participation by Australia in the Council of Foreign Ministers in relation to every aspect of the Pacific settlement.

We have approached the United States Government on these lines and take it that you will support us to the very limit.


1 Documents 201, 202 and 203 respectively.

2 Document 171.

3 Document 207.


[AA : A1066, P45/10/33/1]