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to act honestly as respects the backward peoples dependent upon it, would have a strong motive to relinquish its dependencies to the League in case it could receive them back as mandatary, for the protection of these regions against external aggression would then fall upon the League. The vast navies now kept up by colonizing states as “insurance" against the loss of colonies could then be dispensed with, and unwillingness of a colonizing state to assume toward its colonies the relationship of mandatary of the League would give rise to the suspicion that it desired to exploit the backward peoples under its control and required its navy to insure freedom from interference in its work of exploitation.

The "mandatary system” is, it is evident, a necessary part of the new system in which the civilized states recognize themselves as having with each other social relations of a legal nature, as well as those purely contractual and economic relations with which international law proper is concerned. There thus seems to be coming into existence, through the establishment of this "society of the civilized states," as The Hague Conferences called it, by international convention, a new division of the general public law, distinct from international law proper-a social law of nations, of which the "mandatary system" forms a part.

THE SHANTUNG QUESTION AND

SPHERES OF INFLUENCE

22

337

THE SHANTUNG QUESTION AND

SPHERES OF INFLUENCE

Reprinted from The Nation, September 20, 1919.

HE Shantung Question arises out of the following

provision of the Peace Treaty:

Germany renounces, in favor of Japan, all her rights, title and privileges—particularly those concerning the territory of Kiaochow, railways, mines, and submarine cableswhich she acquired in virtue of the treaty concluded by her with China on March 6, 1898, and of all other arrangements relative to the Province of Shantung.

The "rights, title and privileges” in question are exclusively those which Germany had, on China's domestic territory and within the sphere of its sovereignty, by “treaty” with China and by “arrangements" with the other states having influence in China.

The treaty of March 6, 1898, between China and Germany, as published at Shanghai in 1908 by the Chinese (British-controlled) Imperial Customs Office, was composed of a preamble, three parts, and ratification clauses and signatures. The first part is headed "Lease of Kiaochow," the second, "Railroad and Mining Concessions," and the third, “Priority-Rights in the Province of Shantung."

In the first sentence of the preamble it was stated that the incident at the mission station in the prefecture Tsaochoufu in Shantung had been settled at the time the treaty was made. This incident was the murder of two German Roman Catholic missionaries, about four months previously, at the town which was the birthplace of Confucius, by Chinese political rioters who were members of anti-foreigner societies. Germany sent ships to Kiaochow Bay and landed marines, holding the bay as security for reparation.

The facts concerning the incident and its settlement are given in the correspondence between Sir Claude MacDonald, the British Minister to China, and Lord Salisbury, published in the Parliamentary Papers. The murder of the German priests, as a political antiChristian and anti-foreigner act, and the complicity of the Governor of Shantung, were conclusively proved by the testimony of a third German priest who was attacked with the two others and who escaped. The naval action of Germany relieved Great Britain from carrying out a threat to send a punitive expedition into Shantung, as is shown by the following extract from a letter of Sir Claude MacDonald to Lord Salisbury, of December 1, 1897:

During the summer there were prevalent in this province rumors of the kidnapping of children of foreigners, which produced much excitement, and placed the missionaries in the interior in great danger. The Governor, in spite of much pressure, did nothing to suppress these rumors, and even by his attitude gave them tacit encouragement. After repeatedly calling the Yamên's attention to his conduct, I was at last obliged to desire them to warn him that if any serious incident occurred as a result of his anti-foreign spirit, he would find himself in jeopardy. This I did in a note so long ago as the 27th of July, and the result was, according to a report from His Majesty's council at Chefoo, that active measures were at length taken to check the rumors and the ferment thereupon subsided.

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