Coll 17/10(3) 'Internal: political situation; relations with HMG' [11r] (21/513)
The record is made up of 1 file (256 folios). It was created in 29 Apr 1940-24 Oct 1941. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.
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17 5 9 j
Sir K. Cornwallis
/til aipri 1, 1941.
FROM BAGDAD TO FOREIGN OFFICE . ‘
R. 5.55 p.m. 7th April, 1941.
Repeated to Cairo No, 123.
Angora, No. 95,
Jedda, No. 36.
Government of India.
Air Officer Commanding Iraq.
My telegram No. 281.
Following is appreciation of Basra situation
[group undec.J Counsellor.
2. Failure of the Regent to secure army support
at starting stages made his position almost hopeless for the
moment. ixlthough he is attempting to contact support the
process must necessarily he slow. Counsellor has brought
back the Regent s letters which are being delivered to various
supporters m Bagdad.
. ^ . .3. Regent fails to appreciate the difficulties
of getting his suppprters to come into the open now and join
him. His present idea appears to be to obtain the resignation
of.Taha by letter and then to form new Cabinet. I do not
think he has any chance of success. I fear that the Regent
expects too much from his broadcast, reception of which appears
to have been extremely limited. Distribution of 4,000 copies
of summarized text through the Embassy has been effected. For
tactical reasons I am holding up further publicity pending
£gpl^ to my telegram No. 2£L L__ 'Failure on our part to support
the Regent by force immediately would evidently come as a rude
shock to him but the blow might be softened if we explain that
the lack of support owing to present uncertainty elsewhere does
not mean the abandonment of his cause.
n „ 4. The fact that the Regent is on board the
Falmouth and has headquarters in the Royal Air Force station
Basra, is known to.Iraqi Government and might lead at any time
to demand that he^ and his supporters should be handed over.
The demand may take the form of a request for search of ship
and Royal Air Force station and in the case of refusal force
may be used or threatened. ^ I assume; (a) that any demand to hand
ovqr person should be ;a : :egcfrical3y refused on the grounds of asylum;
(b) demand fpr search of station should also be refused for as
long^ as possible and should only be granted under protest on
the best conditions obtainable uy the Station Commander, provided
the Regent is safe on the ship; (c) that any sudden attacfc by
the army on the station should be resisted by force with our
small [group undec.] available and (d) that any request to
About this item
This file is a continuation of IOR/L/PS/12/2861. It contains correspondence and memoranda regarding relations between HMG Her or His Majesty’s Government in London. and the Government of Iraq, and documents the reaction of the India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. and Foreign Office to political developments within Iraq. The papers primarily consist of communications between HM Ambassador to Iraq and HM Foreign Secretary, regarding the cabinet of Rashid Ali al-Gaylani, his resignation in January 1941 and the formation of a new cabinet under Taha al-Hashimi, and the resumption of power by Rashid Ali backed by the military in April 1941. The file concludes with papers detailing the escape of the Regent 'Abd al-Ilah, and initial negotiations with Rashid Ali's Government of National Defence.
The papers include detailed discussion of the relations between Iraq and the Axis Powers, and attempts by the British to persuade the Government of Iraq to sever diplomatic ties with Italy. They also discuss British concerns over the growing anti-British sentiment in Iraq, as a result of British interference in Iraqi internal affairs and British policy towards Palestine and Syria. Amongst the papers are intelligence reports on the 'Golden Square' Generals (folios 58-59), and a copy of British plans to undermine the Mufti of Jerusalem, Mohammed Amin al-Husseini (folios 194-195). The file also contains a small number of communications from the Government of Iraq, and from HM Ambassadors to Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the USSR.
Folios 4-8 concern the affairs of the family of the late Khan Sahib Badruddin Khan, and appear to have come from a different file.
- Extent and format
- 1 file (256 folios)
The papers are arranged in rough chronological order from the rear to the front of the file.
- Physical characteristics
Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the inside front cover with 1, and terminates at the last folio with 256; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. Two additional foliation sequences are also present in parallel between ff 2-256, and ff 206-225; these numbers are also written in pencil, but are not circled.
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- English in Latin script View the complete information for this record
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- front, front-i, 2r:28v, 30r:80r, 81r:95v, 97r:107v, 109r:137v, 139r:250v, 255r:256v, back-i
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