The Perils of Alliance: June–September 1965

Phuong Pham

in Ending 'East of Suez'

Published in print January 2010 | ISBN: 9780199580361
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722691 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Historical Monographs

The Perils of Alliance: June–September 1965

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Chapter 2 examines the Wilson Government's attempts to introduce its allies to its thinking on withdrawing from Malaysia and Singapore to a northern Australian base, jointly funded with the ANZUS allies. These discussions were suddenly interrupted in August 1965 by the separation of Singapore from Malaysia. In the aftermath of the split, the British sought to accelerate their plans for withdrawal from Singapore, on the grounds that the island's position was no longer secure. These plans were sharply rejected by the ANZUS allies. The rejection was firmly bolstered by the Johnson Administration imposing an understanding that their support of the Pound was linked to a British willingness to maintain an acceptable defence policy. The basic dilemma for Britain's policymakers was now exposed: how to resolve the conflict between the need to cut defence expenditure, for the sake of the country's economic health, and the need to maintain an overseas role, for the sake of the country's major allies.

Keywords: Wilson government; Johnson administration; Malaysia; Singapore—independence; Australia; ANZUS

Chapter.  9957 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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