Mingchien Joshua Bau.

The foreign relations of China: a history and a survey online

. (page 9 of 39)
Online LibraryMingchien Joshua BauThe foreign relations of China: a history and a survey → online text (page 9 of 39)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

observed, to the Powers to withdraw their diplomatic
agents and military forces from Peking to Tientsin,
and there wait for negotiation, which proposal was.
however, not accepted by the allies. 17 Again, during the
negotiation she was in favor of referring the question
of the amount of indemnity to the Hague Tribunal, and
disposed to be lenient and moderate in regard to the
punishment of the principal culprits. 1M

Thus by posing as friend of China, as she had done
so many times before, she expected that thereby she
could win the cession of .Manchuria, as she had won
the Amur and the maritime regions in 1.X60. To this
end, while the allies were negotiating the final protocol
oi peace, she entered, as we recall, into a separate con-
vention with the Tartar General in Mukden. 1 '-' virtually
making. Manchuria a Russian protectorate. To repeat,



frustrated by the protests of Great Britain, Japan and
the United States, she entered into another convention
known as the Lamdorff-Yangyu Convention,* restricting
the sovereign rights of China in Manchuria and North
China. In addition, Russia later demanded the conces-
sion of the monopoly of the economic development of
Manchuria to he granted to the Russo-Asiatic Bank. All
these demands China resisted, and Great Britain, Japan
and the United States entered vigorous protests.- 1

The Russian avalanche soon, however, mi I an effective
check. On January 30, 1902, the Anglo-Japanese Alli-
ance was concluded, aiming directly at the Russian ad-
vance in Manchuria. Perceiving the peril of the oppo-
sition, she at once changed her front and concluded
the Treaty of March 26, 1 ( >02.-'-' promising to restore the
Shanhaikwan-Newchang-Sinminting Railway, and to
complete the evacuation of Manchuria in three succes-
sive periods of six months each. When, as we have;
known, the first period of evacuation came, she fulfilled
her pledge, but this only nominally, for centrated

her withdrawn troops in the other strategic parts of
Manchuria where she was yet allowed to remain. When,
however, the second period of evacuation was due. she
openly refused to effect the withdrawal, and in addition,

Qted to China, as conditions to further evacua
Seven Articles,- 3 demanding, inter alia, the non-
alienation of Manchuria and the closing of Manchuria
against the economic enterprises of any other nation but
Russia. What was worse, she concentrated her troops
at Liaoyang, occupied Fenghangching and Antung, and
,-ent troops across the Yaln River into Korea, thus
threatening even the safety of Korea and Japan.

At this juncture, as we recall, Japan stepped into the
arena and demanded, on AugUSl 12. 1903, inter alia, a

mutual undertaking to respect the integrity of China and
Korea, and the reciprocal recognition of Japan's pre-
ponderating influence in Korea and Ri pedal in-


terest in Manchuria. 24 Throughout the negotiation, Rus-
sia was willing to concede to Japan the recognition of

her preponderance in Korea, but she insisted on Japan's
recognition of Manchuria as being outside her sphere of
influence, and refused to give the pledge, even to the
very last moments of the negotiations, to respect the
rity of China in Manchuria. This refusal on the
part of Russia clearly and conclusively evidenced Rus-
sia's intention to absorb or annex Manchuria. To this
effect John Hay's Utter to President Roosevelt, on May
12. 1903, further bears indirect testimony:

"I have intimated to Cassini that the inevitable result
of the present course of :i n would 1 izure

by different powers of different provinces in China, and
the accomplishment of the dismemberment of the Em-
He shouts in reply. 'This is already done. China
is dismembered and we are entitled to our share.' " - '

The Russo-Japanese War (1904-5) that ensued
resulted, it is to be remembered, in addition to the

ference to Japan of the lease of Port Arthur and
Talienwan, and of the southern section of the Russian-
Manchurian Railway from Changchun to Port Arthur,
in putting an effective check on tl e Russian advance in
Manchuria. Having learned through the painful experi-
ence of defeat, the police of Russia thenceforth under-
went a change from an offensive and aggressive to a

iatory and defensive procedure more on the

rvation of what she had than on the recovery of
what was ires of defense. The Amur

Railway Bill was hastily passed by the Russian Duma,
and the railway was constructed at great cost to the
Government,— more for strategic purposes than for com-

il. Thus the ( hin< n Railway was made

the first line of d the Amur River the second,

and the Amur Railway the third. Besides, Vladivi

was developed into a first class fortress and naval sta-


tion. The Silurian Railway track was doubled, thus
increasing its capacity for transportation.

In addition to these defensive measures, she also
adopted a more conciliatory attitude in her dealings
with China and Japan. In the Harbin case of 1907,
although she had at first insisted on the Russian ad-
ministration of the municipality in that place, she never-
theless came to a compromise with China in 1909, and
arranged for partnership and cooperation on a basis of
equality. - i: Regarding Japan, she also entertained a more
chastened spirit. She entered into the first agreement
with Japan on July 30, 1907, 27 pledging to preserve the
status quo of their respective special interests in China,
and later on July 4, 1910, 28 promising mutual cooperation
in case of foreign interference with their respective in-
terests in Manchuria, and lastly, in July, 1916, forming
a secret alliance with Japan. 29130

Pursuing this defensive policy, Russia soon seized
another opportunity to strengthen further her own de-
fense. In 1911 the Revolution had plunged China into
civil turmoil. Taking advantage of the situation, she
detached Outer Mongolia from China and made it a
buffer state between China and Russia, — though nom-
inally under the suzerainty of China. To repeat what
has been said, on November 3, 1912, 31 she concluded a
convention with Mongolia, pledging to assist the latter
in maintaining the regime of autonomy, thus breaking
away from the grip of the Peking Government, and
putting a prohibition on the admission of Chinese troops
and colonization of the land by the Chinese. A year
later, by the convention with China, on November 5,
1913, M she exacted from China the recognition of the
autonomy of Outer Mongolia and pledged not to send
any troops thereto, nor to colonize the territory. By a
subsequent agreement, on September 30, 1914, 33 she
obligated ( >Uter Mongolia not to grant any railway con-
cession in Outer Mongolia without first consulting Rus-


sia. Finally, to complete the entire process of making
a buffer state of Outer Mongolia, and to bring about
a definite understanding concerning the relationship be-
tween Russia, Outer Mongolia and China, the tripartite
agreement was concluded, on June 7, 191 5. 34 Russia and
China recognized the autonomy of Outer Mongolia
(Art. 2), while Outer Mongolia recognized the Sino-
Russian Convention of November 5, 1913 (Art. 1) and
also the suzerainty of China (Art. 2). Outer Mon-
golia was to have no right to conclude any international
treaty with foreign powers respecting political and ter-
ritorial questions (Art. 3). As regards questions of a
political and territorial nature in Outer Mongolia, the
Chinese Government was obligated to come to an agree-
ment with the Russian Government through negotiation
in which the authorities of Outer Mongolia should par-
ticipate (Art. 3). Thus, by these successive conven-
tions, Russia made Outer Mongolia a buffer state be-
tween China and herself. By prohibiting Chinese coloni-
zation and military establishment in Outer Mongolia, she
succeeded in holding off the contact and therefore the
conflict between the Chinese and the Russians at arm's
length. By requiring mutual agreement as to questions
of a political and territorial nature in Outer Mongolia,
she established herself as a co-overlord or joint suzerain
over Outer Mongolia, and further paved the way for
future expansion or annexation, the opportunity present-
ing itself, as in Japan's case in 1885, when she required
of China previous notice for the dispatch of troops to

When, however, the Soviet Revolution of 1917 came,
the Russian policy was fundamentally changed. As the
Soviet rule was the antithesis of the Czar regime, so
the policy of the Russian Soviet Government in China
was just the opposite of the C/.ar Government. Instead
of seeking territorial, or political, or economic gains, it
sought justice and restitution in China. Instead of hold-


hina a1 a distance, it attempted to befriend China.
In the telegram of March 26, 1920, the Soviel Minister
of Foreign Affairs offered to the Chinese Government**
the restoration of the Chinese Eastern Railway, the can-
cellation of the Boxer indemnity, the abolition of the
Russian extraterritorial rights in China, and the abroga-
tion of all those treaties, the object of which was to
encroach upon the Chinese territorial rights." The Soviel
telegram read In part as follow.-:

". . . The Soviet Government offered at that time to
Government to enter into negotiations on
the subject of annulling the Treaty of 1896, the Protocol
of Peking, 1901, and all the agreements concluded with
Japan from VX)7 to 1916. That is to say to return to
the Chinese people all that has been taken from them by
tin- government of the Czar, either by authority of, or
through an understanding with Japan and the Allies.

"The government of the Soviet returns to the Chinese
people without demanding any kind of compensation the
Chinese Eastern Railway as well as all the concessions,
mineral, forestry, gold mines and others, which have been
snatched from them by the government of the Czar, the
government i' Kerensky and the brigands, Holtvath,
SemenolT. Koltchak, the Russian ex-generals, merchants
and capitalists.

"The governmenl of the Soviet renounce- the con-
tribution due from China for the insurrection of lioxers
00. . . .

"Tin gov< nment of So\iet abolishes all special privi-

. all the concessions to Russian trade-men in Chinese

territory. No Russian official, priest or missionary,

should dare interfere in Chinese affairs. If they commit

a crime-, they ought to be judged according to local laws

and local justice. . . .

"Beyond these principal points, the government of
Soviet is read otiate with the Chinese people rep-

resented by its plenipotentiary, all other questions, and
to liquidate once for all. all the acts of violence and


injustice which have been committed against China by
the former Russian Governments in concert with Japan
and the Allies." Ba

This telegram China did not answer, having as yet
not recognized Soviet Russia, but following this, by a
Presidential Mandate of iber 23. 1920, ;t!) the

Chinese Government terminated all official relations with
the old regime, withholding official recognition from
the Russian minister at Peking and the Russian Consuls
in China, and proclaiming that China would act as tem-
porary trustee of Russian interests in China, pending the
establishment of a National Government in Russia. This,
however, did not abrogate the Sino-Russian Treaties, nor
cancel the extraterritorial rights of the Russians. 40

Tims, we can conclude, in recapitulation, that the policy
of Russia up to the Russo-Japanese War, was pre-
eminently one of territorial expansion under the guise
of friendship and alliance and the adv; of critical

opportunities, as evidenced by the session of the Amur
and Maritime regions in 1858 and 1860, and the acquisi-
tion of the western parts of Hi (1871-1881), and the
seizure of Port Arthur and Talienwan during the gen-
eral scramble of 1898. and finally the attempt to absorb
Manchuria during and following the Boxer Uprising.
We can also safely say that after the Russo-Japanese
War, the policy of Russia in China was mainly con-
ciliatory and defensive, changing, however, to agj
siveness only during and following the Chinese Revo-
lution, as evidenced by its creation of Outer Mongolia
as a buffer state. It is to be observed, however, that
when the Soviel Revolution came, the Russian policy
was radically changed into that of International Broth-
erhood and Soviet Propaganda. As to what the future
of the Russian policy may be, it will depend largely upon
the duration of the So\ iel n crime.



1. Dillon, The Eclipse of Russia, p. 224.

2. E. J. Harrison, Peace or War East of Baikal?, p. 21.

3. Ibid., pp. 23-25.

4. Lancelot Lawton, The Empires of the Far East, Vol. II,
p. 1291.

5. Ibid., Vol. II, p. 1291.

6. Morse, The International Relations of the Chinese Empire.
Vol. 1. p. 477.

7. Hertslet, Vol. I, Xo. 82, p. 461 et seq.

8. Patrick Gallagher, America's Aims and Asia'-; Aspirations,
p. 130; cf. Count Witte, My Dealings with the Li Hung Chang,
World's Work. January, 1921.

9. Count Witte. My Dealings with Li Hung Chang. Article
published in the World's Work, January, 1921, p. 302 et seq.

10. Ibid., p. 302.

11. Patrick Gallagher, op. cit., App. B., pp. 456-457; Lancelot
Lawton, op. cit., Vol. II, pp. 1295-1296; Far Eastern Review,
January, 1921, p. 23.

12. Lancelot Lawton, op. cit., Vol. II, p. 1296.

13. W. F. Mannix, Memoirs of Li Hung Chang, 1913, p. 118.

14. Count Witte, My Dealings with Li Hung Chang, p. 307
et seq.

15. Ibid, p. 307.

16. Morse, op. cit., Vol. Ill, p. 321.

17. Ibid.. VoL III, p. 305.

18. Ibid.. Vol. 111. p. 341 et seq.

19. Asakawa, Russo-Japanese Conflict, pp. 166-167, China, No.
2, 1904, No. 5, January 4, 1901 ; vide supra, Chapter on the Inter-
national Struggle for Concessions.

20. Asakawa, op. cit., p. 174, The Times, February 28, 1901 ;
China, Xo. 2. 1004. X... 6, Xo. 14. No. 25 and No. 42; 'vide supra,
Chapter on the International Struggle for Concessions.

21. Vide supra, Chapter on tin- International Struggle for Con-

22. Hertslet, op. cit., No. 90, pp. 509-512.

23. Count Okuma, Fifty Years of Japan, p. 117; Japan's For-
('•.II Relations, by T. Soyishima; Asakawa, op. cit., pp. 242-244;
China, Xo. _', 1904, Xo. 94.

_'4. Asakawa, op. cit, pp. 303-304; vide supra, Chapter on the
International Struggle for Concessions. Tor a full account of
the Russo-Japanese Negotiations leading to the war, see Asa-
kawa, The Russo-Japanese Conflict, pp. _">

Online LibraryMingchien Joshua BauThe foreign relations of China: a history and a survey → online text (page 9 of 39)