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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 25, 1955


This document was made possible with support from the MacArthur Foundation, Leon Levy Foundation

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    Report on United States attempts to influence Indonesia and improve relations prior to the Asian-African Conference.
    "Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Indonesia, 'What the United States is Doing to Indonesia prior to the Asian-African Conference'," March 25, 1955, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 207-00002-04, 136-18. Translated by Jeffrey Wang.
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Vice Minister has read this

Forward to: Soviet and European Department, International Department, First Asia Department, Second Asia Department, European African Department, American and Australian Department, Intelligence Department, Consular Department, Protocol Department, Human Resources Department, General Administration Department, Research Center, Authority Committee

Priority: Rush

From: Indonesia

Date: 1955 March 25

Already forwarded to: Chairman, [Liu] Shaoqi, [Zhou] Enlai, Zhu De, Chen Yun, Peng Dehuai, [Deng] Xiaoping, Chen Yi, [Xi] Zhongxun, [Yang] Shangkun, [Hu] Qiaomu, Foreign Ministry, Su Yu, [Wang] Jiaxiang, [Li] Kenong, Military Intelligence, Military Unified [Command], [Liao] Chengzhi, Foreign Commerce Department, Deng Tuo, Yang Gang, [Wu] Lengxi, Central Propaganda Department

What the United States is Doing to Indonesia prior to the Asian-African Conference

Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

Some of what the American imperialists are doing to Indonesia prior to the Asian-African conference. Since January this year, [the United States] took measures to conciliate and win over Indonesia; mainly there are the following points:

(1) As a way to further win Indonesia over, [the United States] is using Indonesia’s economic weakness via expanding economic assistance from “foreign aid organization” ](United States Foreign Operations Administration announced January this year that they: will increase economic assistance to Indonesia). According to newspaper The First on January 20th, United States Foreign Operations Administration has eighty personnel in Indonesia who [are operating] under the name of economic assistance; from 1953 to 1954 there were 225 Indonesian students who studied abroad in the United States. This year there was an increase to 302 people; according to incomplete statistics, this year from January to March there are already 34 students who are studying abroad or acting as observers in the United States who have received United States Foreign Operations Administration funds. Among these [who received funds] are personnel from the ministry of culture and education, ministry of labor, ministry of agriculture, personnel from the ministry of transportation, law enforcement and military officers, people who are responsible for trade unions, corporate managers, etc. In addition the United States is also dangling “economic aid” and sends so called experts, advisors, and journalists to Indonesia in order to conduct various activities in Sumatra Island and Java under the [pretext] of observing industry, agriculture, education, geography and folk art, etc. According to incomplete statistics, there are fifteen people [present] from January to March this year; these include the Foreign Operations Administration head and International Monetary Fund representatives, etc. The most attention catching coincidence happened towards the end of March on the eve of the Asian-African conference; an American mail ship brought four hundred “tourists” to “tour” Indonesia. Among these [four hundred], one hundred of them have already reached Coconut City [Jakarta] and Bandung.

(2) [They] also dangle “religion” [as bait] in order to win over Indonesia and Muslim countries. For example, the United States Middle East Friendship Association is holding the world Islam and Christianity conference in Egypt February 9th this year. Indonesia’s [Mohamad] Roem is attending that conference. Indonesia’s newspaper The Torch once criticized this event: “We absolutely cannot allow some countries or groups to turn this conference into a tool for their political interests.” In January this year, the world Muslim youth conference was held in Pakistan, Indonesia’s representative was chosen as chairman. At the same time, the Indonesian reactionary Muslim sect has stepped up their activities. For example, Su-luo’s [sic] “Islamic study association” is prepared to hold the “All Indonesia Islamic study representative conference”. In February the Indonesian Masyumi[ Party and fifty other Islamic groups met and decided to hold recently an “All Indonesia Islamic representative conference”. PSSVG, which is an organization under the Masyumi Party, decided to hold a conference at Yogyakarta in March.

(3) [They] are conducting activities through strengthening conferences of an international nature and other forms; for example in January this year Indonesia has sent observers to attend the Pan Asia Women’s Conference held in the Philippines. In February, under the name of “Town Hall Council” (TOWN HAU) [they] concentrated so called leadership individuals from the Near East and thirteen Asian countries to conduct a seven week visit of the United States; among them was [Mohamad] Roem who is a major head of the Masyumi Party.

(4) [They] used people from vassal countries to [attempt to win over Indonesia], for example the president of the Philippines between January and February sent university president (VIDEUTAN), private representative Ms. Phodaca (TOSEFINA PHODACA) and others to conduct activities in Indonesia. It was said that when visiting leaders of various countries, they would deliver Ramon Magsaysay’s verbal message. They also separately visited Burma and other Asian countries.

(5) [They] strengthen cultural and educational activities towards Indonesia. According to the report of Ba-de-zu-han [sic] on July 1, the Indonesian ambassador to the United States once signed an agreement accepting technical assistance from the American University of California. [The University of California] sent ten professors to teach at the medical school of an Indonesian university; currently four have arrived in Indonesia. In addition the United States established a “Lincoln Library” in Bukittinggi on Sumatra Island.  

(6) Through their embassy in Indonesia they strengthened their relationship to the Indonesian oppositional party and Jiang bandits. Other than the Zhang Xunyi case and Suo-si-luo [sic] case; while a military officer meeting was being held in Yogyakarta, the American ambassador [Hugh] Cumming, under the pretext of attending Suliman’s daughter’s wedding, went to [Yogyakarta] to conduct activities. According to what the newspaper The Eastern Star revealed, [Hugh] Cummings even gave an automobile as a gift. Indonesian news once commented on this event: “The American ambassador’s visit to Yogyakarta had to do with the possibly historically significant officers’ meeting”. In addition, Indonesian news revealed on February 11th “Six Jiang bandits with the help of American and British representatives successfully infiltrated into Indonesia through Hong Kong.” The American imperialists are attempting to use the oppositional party to illegally or openly sabotage the Asian-African conference.

(7) [They are] expanding the investment of oil company “Mobil” for Indonesia, according to newspaper The Independent on January 17…