The Knights of Banjo Hollow

book cover


The Truth About China
By Ralph M. Townsend, 1899-1975

1933, G. P. Putnam's Sons

Ways That Are Dark
Which I wish to remark,
And my language is plain
That for ways that are dark
And tricks that are vain,
The heathen Chinee is peculiar,
Which the same I would rise to explain.



Ralph Townsend
Über GWM Ralph Townsend, pro-Japanese, pro-National-Socialist Germany, exposed the Fake of Nanking and showed the only people with decency in "China" when he was there (or anytime) were the Japanese


By Ralph M. Townsend

This book on China and the Chinese will contain no apologies. It will present no strenuous effort, where uncomplimentary revelations are made, to drag in some supposedly extenuating or counterbalancing virtue possessed by the people whose actions and attitudes are under review in the pages to follow. We have had enough of all that. Too many otherwise worth-while books dealing with China have muddled their information and left their readers confused by fatuous attempts to sprinkle bright hopes over dark facts.

And there has been of late a superabundance of maudlin sentiment about China in comparison with the scarcity of clear-cut information. This book is intended to supply information. If reading it requires at times a strong stomach, this book at least is an honest attempt to present the facts as they are, however unpleasant. An accurate survey of what is now going on in China necessarily includes much that is hideous and terrible, for the simple reason that a great deal of what the Chinese are doing is hideous and terrible. An understanding of recent developments there is impossible without an intimate appreciation of the staggering misery gripping the majority of the population - a fifth of the earth's people struggling helplessly and meaninglessly against fate and themselves. The many aspects, political, social and economic, of the tragedy are but so many varied hues in a single spectroscope of distress, its focus upon a scene of misery vast beyond the dimensions of human pity.

Yet the very vastness of the spectacle places some obligation upon us rationally and emotionally to understand its intricacies, to understand the many conflicting frenzies of attempted survival there which paradoxically produce in the total a strange inertia. China for fifty centuries has moved glacier-like, ponderously and slowly, without serious deflection at any time, ever gathering its weight of population, ever settling towards its obscure destiny, its masses ever increasingly crushed by their own pressure upon themselves. That destiny, as manifest in the lot of the average Chinese there, more and more ominous and intolerable with the accumulated centuries, unfailingly appalls the thinking Westerner who gazes upon it. Though the average American can look at the China scene with detachment and aloof from its colossal tragedy, there are ways, vivid and real, in which it menaces our own future, and to avoid these dangers it is important to understand its peculiar features. This last consideration calls for a new note of realism in our survey of China. For our own welfare and the best permanent interests of all concerned, the situation calls for a sterner realism than that to which we have been accustomed, in order to view and to accept the facts as they are. The facts are repellent. But they exist, and we dwell in the same small world with them. Nothing useful can be accomplished by attempting to cover them up.

Despite the amount that has been recently written and spoken on the subject, China remains incomprehensible for most American readers. In appraising a stranger with whom we are to deal, it is important to know his shortcomings. On any other basis of approach, whatever our spiritual generosity in rating at full measure his virtues, we are likely to lose heavily. His good points, if any, will take care of themselves. They are sure to crop up in time, and regardless of when and how convincingly they come to light, we face no liabilities, losses or disappointments through them. With the stranger's unfavorable points it is different. These are the ones that menace us, and they are therefore the ones to be taken into account early and faced realistically. There is no common sense reason why the United States should repeat in the Far East its stupendous blunders made in Europe during and just after the World War. We are still paying a severe penalty for failure to appraise at that time the character of some of the nations with which we were thrown suddenly into complex relations. In the case of France, for example, a better estimate of French character, with due heed paid to that estimate, would have dictated a more cautious and conservative policy on our part. We should be liked more in France today as a result, and on this side we should have less cause to feel resentment.

The difficulty in the case of China is that very little reliable information has been available to guide us. And what little there is but a microscopic trifle amid mountains of misinformation, so that only a person fairly conversant with the field can distinguish truth from fantasy. If the origins of most books and articles on Far East affairs could be known, it would be found that an astonishing number - spring from sources too closely associated with particular interests to be trusted. This does not mean that all the authors are propagandists or hypocrites. It means that most of them are out to prove a point, to show that religion or this or that course of action will be the salvation of the masses there, and the evidence in support of such a contention is marshaled accordingly. In reading the current crop of books on China, intelligent foreign residents on the scene see in a few of them outright misstatements of fact. But this is not usual. The commoner error is the omission of much that is highly significant. Facts about China have been scarce for a very simple but excellent reason. There are just three classes of foreigners living there who know conditions. Each of these is handicapped; in any effort to tell the truth. The three main classes of foreigners on the spot are: (1) the Missionaries, (2) the Business Men, and (3) Government Officers, mainly men in the Consular and Diplomatic Service. The missionaries do not care to tell the truth, because if the truth were known continued support for their projects would be jeopardized. The business men are not disposed to tell it, for the reason that their goods might meet a boycott by offended Chinese, or their firms suffer some other penalty. American Government Officers, while they remain in the employ of the Government, are strictly forbidden to say anything publicly except something flattering about the country in which they are stationed. Hence members of the best-informed foreign groups on the scene are circumstantially gagged, as far as telling the whole truth is concerned.

It is this injunction of secrecy upon affairs in China, imposed upon the vast majority of the foreigners there, that has resulted in a complete misapprehension of the facts back in America. If a returned Government employee, still in Government service, is asked to speak in this country, for example, he must submit to Washington a copy or a synopsis of his speech. If he tells the whole truth he faces a good deal of trouble, if not outright dismissal. So instead of giving his audience a balanced presentation of significant facts, he tries to put on a show of optimism and expand as much as possible upon what may be considered the brighter side. This "half-truth activity, frequent and widespread, does more harm than good. The audience, crediting the speaker's excellent opportunities for observation, goes away thinking it has a reliable summary of the China situation. The returned business man is in very much the same predicament in the matter of telling the truth. He is anxious to avoid newspaper publicity as an. adverse critic of China for the reasons mentioned.

The missionary is under less restraint. The Government man or the business man may yearn in his soul to speak his mind. But no such agitation to reveal actualities besets the missionary. To tell all the facts would be the last thing he would care to do. But to tell the facts or alleged facts favorable to him is a task he undertakes with enthusiasm. The missionary's emotional zeal for his cause gives him fluency in dispensing glowing assurances of progress, little evidence of which is visible on the scene. More twaddle has come out of China from the missionaries than from any other source. It is not that they set out to make definitely false statements. The overwhelming majority have lofty aims and high personal standards precluding the suspicion of intentional falsehood. But they display such a proneness to exaggerate what they consider hopeful signs, and such a positiveness in stating as fact what is nothing more than their own hope, together with almost invariably omitting information unfavorable to their cause, that they are as a class wholly untrustworthy for reliable data. Conceding that they are sincere, there is something in the mental machinery of the religious zealot that tends to make him incapable of cool, analytical observation and accurate, balanced presentation of facts. The individual exceptions among the class are comparatively few.

But allowing the improbability of getting a true account of affairs in China from the permanent residents, what of the various professional journalists, scholarship visitors and touring professors? Generally their brief stay in the country, combined with the fact that their contacts there are not ideally diversified and representative, shows as a disadvantage in their published works. But while they do not have the advantages of observation that permanent residents, this handicap is more than compensated for by the fact that they can say what they please. At the same time, most of them rely upon sources of information that are doubtful, and their experience in the country is not sufficient to suggest methods of checking the accuracy of what they are told, or adding to it where pertinent details are intentionally omitted. For example, the newly arrived journalist is likely to be thrilled by an interview with some prominent Chinese Government dignitary, and enter in his notes what the dignitary declares to be in progress regarding bandit eradication, Communist suppression, a new public school system, the finally achieved or imminently impending unification of China, and the rest of the stuff that any veteran foreigner would instantly recognize as merely so much carbon dioxide. The prevailing type of unctuous and highly affable Chinese official to be found in the big cities can deliver this hokum very convincingly.

Furthermore, visiting journalists generally make the rounds of the American philanthropies, spending a bit of time with the heads of missionary colleges, simply because these are the most readily accessible prominent foreigners willing to offer comments. The information the journalists gather from this source is not likely to be untrue, but it is likely to be misleading. The heads of foreign philanthropies can be counted on not to give out for publication statements that would reflect upon their poor progress, or reveal their difficulties with the local Chinese whose friendship they feel to be essential. Hence more significant details are usually omitted than are disclosed.

And as if all the forelisted obstacles to correct and full information about the China situation were not enough, there remains the desire or necessity among a large number of editors and publishers, as well as among many writers, to dress up articles and books so that they are "constructive." This means that where anything bad is revealed, it must be interlarded with assurance that the situation is probably only temporary, or that corrective forces are about to remedy it, or that it is more than counterbalanced by progress in another direction, or some other such contention which in the case of China very seldom conveys a correct impression.

Of all the recent vogues in journalism and lecturing, where economic, political and moral issues have been the subject, the passion to be "constructive" at any cost of hypocritical fact-dodging is the most obnoxious, and in its results the most harmful. This book is emphatically not "constructive." Its contents are assembled to provide those interested with information, not with good cheer. It espouses no cause and makes no argument for anything in particular, though in conclusion there is an inference that minding our own business might not be a bad policy. If anyone reading it can find in the facts occasion for optimistic elevation of spirits there is no complaint, and if he does not there is no disappointment or apology. No remedies for what is wrong in China are advocated.

The main aim here is to show what is going on at present in China. Most of the notes for this book were gathered well away from the busy foreignized centers in China. They are revealing of conditions true of the overwhelming majority of Chinese, conditions from which a microscopic few of the natives who live in Shanghai, Tientsin, and other Westernized ports are largely spared. They reveal, too, some of the difficulties and dangers to foreigners who happen not to have the good fortune to live in one of the foreign-protected concessions on the coast.

The newspaper dispatches from China relate mainly sensational occurrences, and dwell but little upon the vaster woes, which are too chronic to constitute news. Editorials and lectures generally discuss the situation in terms of pacts, protocols, committee reports, covenants, spheres of influence, and what not, which in respect to the Chinese are not really of much significance, for the reason that no authoritative government exists in China to commit the people to anything. And as for interpretations according to various isms - nationalism, communism and so on - these seem equally remote from the actualities agitating the average illiterate Chinese, who preys upon his fellows and is preyed upon by them for reasons more primary to appetite and instinct than these abstractions denote.

When I learned in 1931 that I was to leave immediately for China to remain two or three years, I could find nothing up-to-date that would give me an idea of just what I could expect to encounter as a foreigner living among the Chinese, nor could I find anything presenting the scene as a whole as the Chinese live it. Of discussions of their "aspirations" and the like, with abundant asterisk references to wax-sealed and red-ribboned documents cluttering the archives of Geneva, Paris and Washington, I found no end. But for practical use in anticipating the realities these were a waste of time. The run-of-the-mill Chinese never aspired in his life, and never heard of anyone who did. The proposition is that like everybody else he likes to eat and survive. How he goes about it, how he succeeds and fails, is the effort etching bloody history on the map of Asia today.

One of the principal tasks of a consular officer is gathering reliable information by all methods and from all sources. This serves admirably as a check upon individual observations. A consular officer is at once many persons, seeing with a hundred pairs of eyes all that goes on about him. At the same time, his carbons of reports from consulates elsewhere in the country reveal the extent to which his immediate observations are true for the land as a whole.

Some of our consuls in China are remarkably accomplished investigators, and some of them are in addition very able reporters. I could mention several whose sense of the significant, and ability to sift fact from rumor would dim some of the star reporters of our metropolitan dailies. And in comparison with average newspaper and magazine writers, they excel in one virtue - accuracy. The State Department's eternal vigilance and emphasis is upon this, and the mass of reports called for is a ceaseless drilling in correctness of statement.

Students of Chinese history are cautioned that they will find nothing new in this book. Veteran foreign residents of China are assured that they will find nothing unfamiliar to them in the sections devoted to their difficulties. But the reader will see four hundred million people - a fifth of the earth's population - engulfed in misery. The facts gained in this brief survey will not answer fully the historically minded who inquire the cause, nor the philosophically minded who seek the remedy. But perhaps they will help lift the lamp upon some of those "ways that are dark" and reveal at least a few of the "tricks that are vain."

RALPH TOWNSEND. October 6, 1933


The shouting and chanting half-naked coolies on the wharfs make a steady din. Above, the swirling traffic of the Bund, a mixture of bicycles, rickshas, automobiles, wheelbarrows and coolies carrying every imaginable thing on bamboo poles, rumbles by in a two-way bedlam. Streets that open into the Bund at right angles are equally jammed. They are overhung with colored banners in Chinese characters.

Sampan on the Yangtze
A sampan on the Yangtze River

If the modern stone and steel buildings make the scene insufficiently Chinese, the Chinese beggar boats putting out toward your docking ship soon remedy the matter. Swarms of these incredibly filthy sampans of beggars are immediately alongside in a turmoil of bawling children and yelling parents. While some of the family wave their hands for money, others are busy with more urgent economics. These have nets, something like bait nets for fishing, fastened on long bamboo poles. They hold the nets against the ship's drains, and when anything that was once food issues forth they catch it in the nets and handle it down to their sampans. The children fall upon it ravenously. The competition among the sampans is fierce, with redoubled jabbering when one fellow outmaneuvers another with his pole and nets a choice haul. A pail of refuse coming out of the ship's galley port draws them like a school of minnows. A few bread loaf ends, a handful of banana skins or a rotten orange sets off a new confusion of scrambling and quarreling.

That is Chinese poverty - an introduction. It is jarring, when first seen, to find that men and women clutch at food from the sewers of other human beings. And along the roaring modern Bund above, the finance kings of the East, foreign and native alike, men in silk robes and men in fastidious Western dress, drive past in expensive automobiles. Shanghai revealed new extremes of wealth side by side with abject poverty.

But you will learn that there are Chinese poorer than these scavengers. The scavengers are mainly of a special caste, the lowest of the low, if not the poorest. Even the ownership of one of their vilely slimy sampans is beyond the lifetime possibilities of many Chinese. And some Chinese, even in the acute extremities of hunger, will seem to retain some strange last residue of inward dignity, some seeming consciousness of final propriety above that of a hyena or a buzzard. They do not eat refuse.

Watching these boat scavengers at different times, I have paid particular attention to see if their revolting business could be a show put on to draw sympathy. But this did not seem to be the case. Their appetites appeared genuine. And incidentally, as a commentary on the deadliness of germs, those refuse-eating babies and children, naked or half naked in those sampans slimy with a filth accumulated for generations, looked the bestnourished and the chubbiest and the happiest that I ever met anywhere in the Orient. Their unwashed round yellow faces shone with health.

The crews of the liners docking at Shanghai often try to keep the scavengers off with cold water from a hose, for the Chinese in these sampans have a bothersome habit of hoisting small children on their long bamboo poles through the open portholes of passenger staterooms. The children snatch what they can and. return down the poles.

Ashore the coolies fight for your baggage as men fight for it in Cherbourg or Havre, only more savagely and there are more of them. Their shouts to you and to one another drive you half out of your wits. They jostle you with their unmentionably filthy bodies, and snatch, snatch, snatch with their long-nailed filthy hands like monkeys at feeding time.

The abundance and cheapness of human labor, or at least the theoretical presence of it, is noticed as soon as you reach your hotel. If it is a good one, a coolie will be assigned to squat by your door and rise to open it when you come and go, day or night. Another will layout your things if you leave your bag open. Innumerable others will make their appearance out of nowhere. There seems no limit to the supply. They don't like to sit or stand when they work. Shining your shoes or doing anything else, they like to squat on their haunches. They are more agreeable than serving people in Europe - that is, those employed and wanting to keep their positions. This brings up a principle ever emphasized through all experience in China - that a Chinese is readily manageable by any allegiance to authority. He has a theory of responsibility, and pressure upon that point will stir him to proper action. You do not tip the hotel coolies direct to individuals. You tip the No. 1 Boy for the lot. He settles with each according to some arrangement of their own. They work for him and are responsible to him. He is responsible to the hotel, or whatever other organization the connection may involve. The coolies are his own gang, generally relatives, and the system is a sort of clan system. The No. 1 is the head man, the king. He keeps most or a large part of the takings, and a wellemployed No. 1 is usually well-to-do for a low-class Chinese. He exacts a percentage cut from curio dealers or other persons who sell to you in his domain. He demands that his under-coolies turn in to him any tips direct from an inexperienced stranger. If they don't, and are caught, they face dreaded penalties from him. He will search them when he likes for hidden money.

In the dining room the same system prevails. You tip the dining room No. 1. The employment system in the hotel is a picture of the way much of the labor in China is managed. Nobody relies altogether on his personal earnings for a livelihood. Nor can anyone keep his personal earnings for himself. Each strategically brings pressure to collect toll-squeeze as it is called in China - from somebody else. And somebody else is ever waiting to collect from him. Even the beggars are organized into guilds, with elaborate systems of squeeze and counter-squeeze upon one another, and the whole organization, in turn, must pay squeeze to other organizations. Everybody pays to get a job and pays to keep it. And everybody is ferociously determined to make his collected squeeze as big as possible and his paid-out squeeze as little as possible.

Such a system has brought about a degree of skill in deception absolutely unimaginable to a Westerner. Survival depends upon out-deceiving competitors. With the credentials of economic success a matter of deception, those who are at the top may be expected to be better at the game than those lower down. Experience with "high class" Chinese, especially officials, bears out this proposition with sad frequency.

Rickshaw in Shanghai
A rickshaw in Shanghai

Out your hotel window, if you are up high, you look upon a sea of roofs, terra-cotta in broad masses and gray slate here and there, away to distant forests of tall chimneys where manufacturing in the Western way has invaded the suburbs. The scene is not impressively Chinese. The roofs are either flat or steeply sloped as in France. There is a good deal of haze, and the air is a little acrid. This is from the small wood and charcoal fires of the millions of Chinese all around. Vendors' cries are penetrating above the general rumble of the city, and somewhere below a shrill tumult of Chinese curses is heard - the now familiar and recognizable symptom of a ricksha boy's quarrel for place. You locate the racket, and watch the Settlement policeman, a huge bearded and turbaned Sikh, lunge in among the rickshas and whack out right and left with a stick across the backs of all those he can reach. They scatter. Those hit, pulling their rickshas to a safe distance, mutter resentment with just sufficient affectation of boldness to save "face" among listening Chinese, but not enough to draw another crack from the Sikh's stick. The row is over and the Sikh is at other business in a traffic jam. Going about in Shanghai, you are not long in catching on to some of the traits of the people that will be characteristically in evidence in remote parts of the country where foreigners have little or no direct influence. There are ways in which the Chinese seem unsusceptible to influence, and remain themselves even among foreigners.

For example, the readiness of all classes of Chinese to say whatever will please your ear at the moment, altogether irrespective of its truth, will be impressively noted in dealing with them. If you want your suit dry cleaned by Friday afternoon, or some such thing, of course you are assured that it will be ready, and you may privately rest assured that it will not be. This trait is rather common among tradespeople all over the world, and particularly to be expected among certain classes of immigrants in America. But in China it is a cult. And on inquiry, you will be told that in the whole history of the Wing Wong dry cleaning concern no suit was ever cleaned in so short a time as you mention, and the hint is that you are highly unreasonable to have expected quicker service. The same experience will characterize dealings with Chinese high and low, from trifles to things of importance. I should say, from personal experience, that the total of procrastination is no greater per diem and per capita in China than in some Latin American countries. But after summarizing a fair number of instances both ways, I sense that the motive is different in China. There is not a cult of manana, exactly, because the Chinese, compared to Latin Americans, are very industrious. It is simply an almost absolute disregard of truth, which prompts them to say what they estimate will be most pleasing to you and, incidentally, what will get rid of you most smoothly if you are unprofitable, or get your order if you are a possible customer. In answering inquiries about time, distance or anything else, a Chinese will say what he thinks you want to hear oblivious to the fact that you may prefer accuracy, even though it is disappointing.

In this particular, you may recall the admonition of a Chinese philosopher of the past, a moral that the Chinese have certainly learned to practice, to the effect that one should never refuse a request in an abrupt manner, but should grant it in form, though with no intention of fulfillment: "Put him off till tomorrow, and then another tomorrow. Thus you comfort his heart," advised the ancient sage.

This characteristic of the Chinese, their cheerful indifference to truth, exasperates a foreigner perhaps more than any quality in their nature. And as is natural, without any conception of truth as a principle among themselves, they seem frequently incapable of believing anything said to them by others. After a few days of being lied to by Chinese on all sides and at all times, you will wonder at the strange individuality of your experience. For you will have heard all your life, if you are an average American, that a Chinaman's word is as good as his bond. Accordingly, you broach the problem to a veteran foreign resident: He agrees that a Chinaman's word is as good as his bond. But he postscripts this with the salty humor with which the explanation is always sprung: "Of course - but then his bond isn't worth a damn." That leads to mention of one of the standing jokes of the Orient - the

yarn about Japanese being so distrustful of one another that they hire Chinese to count the money. Americans have told me this yarn appeared in a school geography used in America many years ago. Anyway, it is amusing after a little experience in China.

Another common conception in America is that the Chinese are a most ostentatiously sinister and mysterious people, and that they are furthermore "impassive Orientals," transacting the affairs of life by means of slow nods and grunts from expressionless faces, something like Chief Rain-in-the-Face meditating upon the Happy Hunting Ground. As a matter of fact, excepting Negroes, few races ventilate more tooth and gum area on occasions of humor than the Chinese, and none are more noisy than they on occasions of anger. And they are childishly naive, as a general thing, in disclosing what they intend to do. We find them secretive in a sense, very much so, but before the fruition of any important plot they manage usually to let out a few unintended hints, so that marked victims are forewarned.

In boxing parlance this unconscious intimation of what is coming is called "telegraphing the punch." The Chinese are very clumsy in telegraphing their punches. Hundreds of foreigners in China owe their lives to this clumsiness. When the Chinese are mysterious they are not ingenious. They resort to standardized pretenses that are so uniform that an experienced foreigner can actually read them as a code, the way a veteran sailor can read the approaching weather from learned symptoms. Thus practiced foreigners living in dangerous territory learn to sense from surface signs when to evacuate down river to a protected foreign settlement. Those who never learned soon enough are now buried here and there inland. Before arriving in Shanghai you will have heard a great deal about the dissolute waywardness of Americans and other foreigners who live there. This is not really the most conspicuous feature of foreign life on the spot. Shanghai is headquarters for many philanthropic endeavors, a gathering place for hundreds of foreigners interested in educational and other harmless pursuits. The number of strictly conservative temperaments brought there by such interests is naturally large enough to provide a considerable colony of men and women whose tastes in enjoyment would be approved by any quiet and conservative American or British community. And among the business men, you gather the impression that they represent upon the whole a higher level of character than groups of equal means in America. The American Army and Navy circles are perhaps a bit more frisky than when stationed on American soil, chiefly from the cheapness of liquor, which because of lower taxes is much less expensive than in Canada and most other countries. Girls - mainly Russian - are also cheap.

Of course, a good many young men sent out by foreign firms go to pieces from dissipation in Shanghai. The food, the climate, and the general tenor of life do not conduce to tranquil asceticism, and particularly not to celibacy. For persons with infirmities of character and tendencies to recklessness, life in Shanghai, or anywhere else in the Far East for that matter, may operate much more disastrously than at home. It is not surprising that a fair percentage make fools of themselves. The British, Germans and French seem to make a better average showing than Americans. This is scarcely ill be attributed to our home prohibition, since the same fact was observed in respect to Americans in China well before our thirteen-year-old experiment began.

The famous Shanghai night life is a rather poor show. The swarms of Russian girls - exiles from the Bolshevik Revolution, some of them - are rarely pretty. Furthermore, nearly all are long past the "girl" stage; and as their mode of making a living tends to age them prematurely, the majority of those who hang around the night clubs are certainly not attractive now, if they ever were.

Many were never driven out of Russia by the Reds, but were born and raised in Manchuria. If there were ever many aristocrats among them, they are gone from the ranks now. Most of them are daughters of Russian soldiers, fur traders, butchers, bakers and the rest of the lower middle class employments, with no lineage and less education and culture. The girls frequenting the Shanghai dancing places are mainly there to provide partners for men who come without partners. They encourage customers to buy drinks and they themselves get a commission on all orders, besides the free food which their patrons buy them. They are not presuming, usually, in the nagging way that cafe girls pester foreigners in many European cities.

A surprising number of these Russian all-weather girls manage to hook very presentable American husbands through acquaintance begun as dancing partners. American naval commanders are perpetually vexed in Shanghai at the flood of requests from noncommissioned men to marry. The marriages of sailors with these Russians usually do not last, but of course they are seldom expected to.

Several Shanghai dancing places do not employ these "hostesses." In none of the night clubs is there entertainment comparable to New York's cabarets of the pre-prohibition era. In dignity, however, poor as they are, they are a considerable notch ahead of the multitudinous gyp-joint night clubs flourishing in the upper forties and fifties off Broadway. For persons determined to be dissipated, in some fashion or in all fashions, opportunities in Shanghai are satisfactory. Smoking opium is obtainable with no more difficulty than liquor in "prohibition" New York, and imported manufactured drugs are available with a little looking around. For low purses and lower tastes, unconventionality may be obtained by listening to the innumerable ricksha boys who want to take a stranger somewhere, or by following one of the numerous slim and haggard Chinese girls in native dress and foreign facial make-up who call out in Chinese from dim-lit alleys. Their bottom price is five or ten cents, American money; their motto is quick turnover and big volume. From the persistence with which they accost foreigners, these girls evidently have considerable patronage from among them, doubtless mainly from derelicts. But with Chinese patience they overlook nothing, and with a hideous pock-marked face and consumptive cheeks they will tackle a prospect with spats and cane as readily as they tackle a bum with a two-day beard and no hat.

As in all places where there are Chinese, in Shanghai every sort of gambling joint is accessible. Race track betting is legal, and horse racing has the largest following of any sport. It is really pony racing, with horses of small stature from Mongolia, called Mongolian ponies.

The most famous club in the Far East is the Shanghai Club, facing on the Bund. Here the foreign business and governmental leaders of the city lunch and dine, after they have got off to a good start at the notable Shanghai Bar on the first floor. This bar, members assure you, is the longest in the world, eight feet longer than one at Agua Caliente. The weazened old white-haired Chinese shakers behind it are real characters; an imperturbable understanding of British palates mechanizes their every motion. You will never see a man drunk at the Shanghai Club. It's not cricket there, a fact taken for granted by the British, but noted by Americans. Skipping from the scene to the history behind it, this city of three million, you learn, has risen out of what was little more than a mud flat in a brief seventy-five years. It is not the most desirable location for a trading center in this immediate area. But it is the place where the foreign pioneers who were opening trade with China during the last century could get a concession they might develop with the protection of foreign law, and the Chinese have flocked to it at the rate of nearly a hundred Chinese for every foreigner of its population. As at Canton, the Chinese who granted the concession enjoyed a good deal of private amusement originally by assigning one of the least desirable sites to the foreigners. But though at the time it was one of the least desirable, protection for trade overcame that obstacle as compared with native Chinese areas where the risks for even the Chinese were too great to undertake large enterprises. Reasonable security for property drew thousands, and finally three millions. The incoming tide is not yet stopped. A Chinese may live in Shanghai's International Settlement, or in the French Concession adjoining it, with the same civic protection for his life and property offered any foreigner there. Compared with the hazards of existence outside a foreign area where Chinese must pay heavily for the privilege of holding on to their wealth, the foreign-administered territory is a paradise, and their eagerness to live in it reveals their attitude. Many of them venture outside it only to make face-gaining anti-foreign speeches among radicals who would like to expel the foreigners and have this development for their awn, now that it is fabulously rich. But they know they could not manage it, even if foreigners by some incalculable freak surrendered their treaty-established privileges. Few Chinese of property, if any, really care to see the foreigners, or strictly speaking, foreign protection of property, removed. For a Chinese, the scattered havens of foreign territory in China, a few acres here and there in the immensity of territory, serve in the manner that pieces of wood serve in the children's game in which we hear, "I'm standing an wood, you can't get me."

In Shanghai, these great warehouses you see are safe from plundering war lords, extorting officials and ravaging armies; there are courts to proceed against defaulters, and there is recourse to law in legal liability. These conditions exist in theory outside foreign territory in China, but in practice they are absent in any except the rarest instances and by accident. Chapei, invisible from the Whangpoo because an arm of the International Settlement protrudes along the river, is a Chinese-administered suburb of the foreign Shanghai. It is Chinese, not foreign. That explains why it was a theater of war in 1932. Foreign gunboats and troops were rushed to the International Settlement to prevent invasion of the Settlement by either contestant. The chief fear was of a stampeding mob of defeated Chinese soldiers. Chapei is a part of what is called locally Greater Shanghai. Were the Chinese able to get along with one another and were they possessed of constructive spirit, a second Shanghai could be built at any of several places not far from the mouth of the Yangtze, many of them more suitable than the site of Shanghai for a great metropolis. You learn at once, upon consulting the data of their personal history, that for two generations they have had swarms of foreign-trained men theoretically competent for such an under-taking. During the present century they have had thousands. Every year for decades now they have had large numbers of Chinese architects, engineers, business graduates and other academically proficient experts in every line returned from the universities of of America and Europe. Plus this array of theoretically competent talent, they have an abundance of capital. There are many Chinese millionaires. The truth is, as will be shown farther on, that they show a strange inability to make anything work under their own management when the project is larger than a one-man enterprise.

They have most of what it takes, in the modern world, to make things work. They have a talent for obedience, when well supervised. They have industriousness and intelligence. But two other essentials, honesty and willingness to cooperate, they emphatically lack, and some deeply inner ingredient of character seems to militate against remedying this lack. They simply cannot work among themselves in large undertakings. And they do not have a satisfactory mental connection between academic ability and practical application. But the worst of their deficiencies is their treacherous loyalty. They seem ever prone to work against one another rather than cooperatively, though they are very fond of membership associations expressing a theory of cooperation, but never achieving it.

The frequency with which they betray one another is astounding. To paraphrase a common proverb of American social usage, it may be said that in business one Chinese is a company, two are a clique, and three are a plot. It will be noted in China, as in large American cities, that almost any outstanding success of Chinese enterprise is run as a one-man-boss concern, patriarchally, with little if any administration delegated to subordinates. A Chinese subordinate, under hourly scrutiny, is capable of efforts often surpassing, individually, those common in foreign companies. But a Chinese subordinate out of sight in a Chinese enterprise is a dangerous liability, an opportunist weighing the advantages of working for his employer or working covertly against him. It is little wonder, accordingly, that the Chinese are such frenzied gamblers, setting aside for the moment other considerations in their character that probably tend to make them so. Through many centuries there has been very little opportunity in China for safety in investments. The character of the people has been traditionally such that to thrust money into anybody's hands as an investment was always a gamble. Hence a Chinese with money might as well gamble it over the gaming table as any other way, and have at least the thrill of exciting play instead of the long gnawing anxiety following the equal, if not greater, risk of investing it.

Shanghai, halfway north and south port of the China coast and point of departure for travel up the Yangtze, is the starting place for practically all interior travel, and for most travel up and down the coast to other Chinese ports. It is the clearing house for news from all over the country. It is where foreigners from different stations inland meet, and where they renew contacts with civilization after what is for some of them months of isolation up river. Distant spots that have been mere names unassociated with anything become realities as you live in Shanghai, and so you soon begin to know where conditions are bad and where they are worse. Snatches of lunch and tea conversation dwell lightly and with indifference upon massacres, famines, floods, piracies. "The latest" usually has to do with some military chief who has deserted for a consideration from some previous allegiance. In discussing the Chinese, nobody takes for granted any objectivity in their movements other than personal temporary advantage. Speculating upon what this one or that one of the prominent figures will do is merely a sort of askme- another game, a game occasionally of dollars and cents concern to the foreign business men, one hinting of lengthy reports in code for the consular and diplomatic men, and one of amusement over tea and sandwiches and cocktails for the wives of both and their bridge guests day by day as you remain in Shanghai, if you mingle with "old timers" who have lived in all parts of China, you gain familiarity with what is going on. After a few weeks much of the chaos understandable. But the wish to know more is infectious. In the case of the ancient Egyptian or Mayan civilizations we note a strong appeal to curiosity among many people who have never been to the valley of the Nile nor to Yucatan, and do not expect to go. But few people are attracted toward things Chinese, or possessed of a desire to burrow into the lore of their present or past, if they have never visited China. On the spot, however, curiosity is amazingly quickened, and persons who have never wished an antique in the house set about becoming connoisseurs on the art of the Han or Sung or Ming period. Many who escape this interest feel the tug of practical curiosity in the matter of recent and contemporary Chinese history.

Nearly everywhere you go you will stumble into conversation bearing upon some aspect of what the Chinese have done or are doing. If you dismiss or postpone the art side, the pressure is still strong to look into the matter of how the country ever got into such a muddle, which is a way of wanting to know why the Chinese are Chinese. So you hie yourself to Kelly & Walsh's bookstore on Nanking Road. You will have been told in advance that while there is a super-abundance of reliable written matter concerning China of the past, most of that dealing with present conditions obscures the issues altogether by a timid avoidance of straightforward, harsh facts that would throw light on motives and personalities. You have learned from eyewitnesses that not more than a tenth was ever put on paper. Nevertheless, you hear ""Kuomintang," "Taiping," "Borodin," and other names and terms so frequently and so casually mentioned that you feel self-consciously ignorant, and conclude you must remedy the mystery as well as possible at the bookstore. And once started, it is like catnip. It is a perpetual adventure in Believe It or Not. And it is also like a game of solitaire, with the prize a confirmation of your judgment and guesses, after you begin to catch on, to match the tricks properly, and ascribe to each present Chinese contender and alleged patriot the varieties of devilment that are his own specialty. It makes more vivid the history being enacted all about you, of which you will read intimations daily in the Shanghai Times, the Shanghai Evening Post and Mercury, and the North China Daily Herald. But incidentally, you will not read the worst in anyone of these publications, or in any other publication. News items are covered in a routine way, with maximum effort to spare the sensibilities of Chinese readers. Foreigners in China, especially those in positions bringing them into prominent light before the natives, exert themselves to maintain harmony among the racial groups there thrown together. Practically all of them have Chinese acquaintances or friends. Accordingly, for reasons of individual friendship, as well as of general comity, they do not usually include in published matter details of a sort to give offense, even though the details are known to be true.

Thus, if you happen to take dinner in the evening with a staff writer on a well-known Shanghai daily, and learn from him that General So-and-So was bought off by the opposition, and straightway commandeered a fleet of trucks at the front to haul off his loot and opium while leaving his troops in the lurch on the battle lines, you may expect next morning to read that the General So-and-so, recently defender of the Ho-hum sector, has announced that he has withdrawn his forces twenty li behind Ho-hum and is at the moment engaged in a conference with Nanking leaders preparatory to renewed advances on the Ho-hum enemy lines.

"The rotten -- -- -- ," says your fellow-diner with four-worded emphasis. "We thought for a while he was a better sticker than some of the rest of them."

A few days later the paper publishes the news that General So and-So has left for important conferences at Canton, "where final plans will be settled for the unification and harmony of all parties." Still a few days later you read that for reasons of illness, General So-and-So will remain indefinitely at Hong Kong. There is no revelation of the really significant news anywhere in the accounts.

And if you encounter a news agency photographer, he will as likely as not be grumbling that after running all kinds of risks to get certain pictures, nobody will use the best ones because they are too revealing to stand publication.

This eternal pretense and evasion - it gets the foreigners after a time as inevitably as it possesses every Chinese.

Walks about Shanghai can hardly be called delightful anywhere in the business area, but they are certainly interesting. Crossing the narrow French Concession, south of the International Settlement, with a glance of approval at the concrete "pill box" machine gun nests the French keep at the boundary, you enter what was once the walled Chinese city. The walls are no more.

One street here, perhaps half a mile long, must rank as one of the oddest in the world. Spread on the sidewalks for its entire length, on a day when there is no rain, is an endless assortment of picked-up rubbish for sale. It is a new revelation in poverty. The Flea market in Paris looks like Tiffany's in comparison. Each "shop-keeper" has a dirty cloth a yard or two square laid on the ground. On this he has perhaps a single burned-out electric bulb, an old tooth brush or two from some garbage can, some scraps of rusty wire, some bent nails and a couple of cork stoppers. That will be all. He will sit all day, day after day, to sell that - presumably the findings of his wife and children sent out as scavengers. And the hundreds up and down the street, most of them, will have stocks as amazingly trifling and worthless. A few will have such imaginably useful articles as a workable cast-off hinge or a pair of bent scissors. Anything, absolutely anything, available in ash heaps and garbage cans is on sale here - an unmated old slipper, a nicked ink bottle, the cover of a book with the pages gone - all are for sale, each merchant having only half a dozen or so bits of such junk for his entire stock. At what infinitesimally low prices these things are marked I should not attempt to guess. Evidently they are sold to somebody. That able-bodied men occupy themselves wholly in such a way, with customers seemingly scarce, and stocks remaining unchanged hour after hour, is an illumination of poverty we can scarcely comprehend.

Poverty in various manifestations everywhere is perhaps the dominating force among all your impressions throughout China. On early morning walks in more rural sections I used to see droves of Chinese women out digging in damp places with hoes and pails. I was in time rather curious, as they appeared to be peasant Chinese and not fisherfolk. I learned that they were digging worms for their chickens. Chinese families have no table scraps left over and they have so little for themselves that to feed grain to a chicken would strike them as the wildest extravagance. Every member of the family in China does something useful. The small children are kept busy picking dry grass or weeds for fuel to cook with. A fire for warmth in winter was never heard of by most Chinese.)

At Kiangwan, weeks after the battle of February, 1932, you could see Chinese scraping the bones of horses that had been killed. All the meat had long disappeared. The dogs would drive off the buzzards and have their turn, then the Chinese would come with knives and drive off the dogs. It is a mistaken notion that the Chinese eat dog meat generally. In much of China there is a superstition against it. The Cantonese, however, are said to relish it, and to enjoy rat meat also. Snakes are considered a delicacy, as far as I could learn, all over the country.

Among the Chinese farmers of South China a large number of those who grow rice can afford to eat only a little of it themselves. Rice is not exactly a luxury in China, for it is in much of the country the staple article of diet. But the price is higher than for some other things to eat, and only those passably well fixed can turn loose their full appetites on it. The rice growers accordingly compound a mixture of rice and sweet potatoes, or rice and some other vegetable. Usages vary of course in different areas, but general reports in South China indicated that a twenty per cent addition of rice to a dish is regarded as moderately good fare.

The Chinese in the warmer parts of the country eat a good deal of fruit. Bananas grow as far north as Foochow, but not in a way to make a substantial addition to the native diet. From Amoy south, however, they are plentiful. A kind of small orange is plentiful all over South China, and these help considerably, along with corn, carrots, cabbage, beans and other items similar to those in the United States. The greater variety of fruit gives them a certain advantage in diet over the Chinese of North China, where the people rely rather heavily on beans and grain. Nevertheless, the Chinese of the North generally give the impression of better physical stamina.

But the physical stamina of all peasant class Chinese is fairly good. Lean, scrawny, light in weight and patiently plodding, their constancy of toil under the hardest conditions is one of the wonders of the world. They cannot work as long without eating as a Westerner, for the reason that their sinewy bodies carry no excess energy stored in extra ounces of fat, and their bulky vegetable diet provides no strength for long ahead. But replenished with a dish of rice, or a few raw sweet potatoes now and then, plus a bowl of tea, a Chinese can keep going throughout the day and throughout life, for that matter, in a fashion no American or Englishman could approach.

You will be told in Shanghai that the way to satisfy a ricksha coolie is to pay him exactly the standard fare and no more. This is twenty cents Chinese money for an ordinary ride - and thirty or forty cents for proportionately longer rides, say those of several miles or with waits of half an hour or more. Twenty cents Chinese money, "Mex" as it is called as a hangover from the days when Mexican silver dollars were the only general currency, is equal to about four or five cents American money, depending upon the exchange.

If you take pity on a ricksha coolie - and he will do his talented best to look pitiful - and pay him too much, he will shout that he is cheated. If he thinks you do not understand any Shanghai dialect, he will curse you roundly at the top of his voice for the benefit of other grinning coolies looking on. He supposes that because you gave him more than you were obliged to, you are therefore a fool, and with a little exhibit of shouts and tears you can be made a bigger fool and induced to hand over a good deal more. Nothing corresponding to sympathy exists in the world he knows, and the idea of some one desiring to set him up with a square meal after seeing him barefoot in the snow and slush is completely incomprehensible. Experimentally, I have more than once handed a coolie a dollar for a brief and easy trip, to see what he would do. In only one instance did the coolie handed a dollar, about two days' earnings, fail to turn on me with a grand show of fury and indignation at being underpaid.

Missionaries will try to tell you that away from the big cities, out among the noble-spirited "real Chinese" in the rural areas, such a present would bring immediate thanks and amiable smiles. But experimenting similarly elsewhere, in smaller cities, villages and even out on the farms away from any possible tourist, hundreds of miles from Shanghai, I have found the same results uniformly in every locality visited.

Once returning from a mountain walk late in the afternoon I missed the proper path back across the valley of rice paddies. The paths, made of stones used as field boundaries, ran in every direction. It was impossible to see the paths ahead because of the dense growing rice, and I called an idling farm boy to ask the correct way. He walked a little distance to show me. I thanked him and fished out a silver dollar, as much as he could earn with exceptionally good luck in an ordinary week. He took the dollar, pocketed it, and announced that the standard price for path-showing thereabouts was two dollars. He raised a loud commotion, shifting, as is usual with Chinese, to supplications and wails when Act I of the accustomed drama failed of effect, and followed behind me moaning for two miles, absurdly hoping the foreign devil would change his mind.

In Shanghai, as in all places where Chinese predominate, the foremost impression along the streets is of their eternal eating. Every few doors is a shop with flat pressed ducks, red and looking as if they were lacquered, hung everywhere inside, and facing on the sidewalk a sort of stove with sweatmeats frying. And along the curb, peddlers with entire kitchenettes, which they carry on their backs when moving, are constantly mixing dough and cooking little cakes. The first thing every ricksha boy does when he is paid is to go to one of these vendors for a purchase of something to eat. In a land where millions starve daily, food is uppermost in the minds of all. The instant significance of every bit of money is food. If the person is of the wealthier classes, he feels the infection of this nationally dominant thought all the same, and because he can afford it, he eats all the time. The prosperous classes are eating the whole day long, from early morning till evening, in the street delicatessens. And at night, as you glimpse them through an open window, they are still eating. They expand in it, they blend in it the deepest ecstasies of spiritual and physical delight. Their eyes shine at the prospect. The most bedraggled and emaciated coolie, looking good for nothing but the grave, when given his pay after a ricksha pull will become a new personality the moment he can begin to wad some sort of vendor's mess down his cormorant-like gullet, wagging his head to speed swallowing and vacate his mouth for more.

When shopping in China, if you are a stranger, every recourse will be exhausted in practically every shop to short-change you. If the count is short, the shop-keeper's defense will be that the exchange of small money for large has changed that day. Upon your willingness to call on the exchange shop next door and prove him wrong, the shop-keeper hands over a little more money. Upon further argument, he will hand over a further installment in the cause of accuracy. At the last he will complain that he has no more ten-cent pieces or no more coppers. Upon your pressing him with a willingness to change a larger piece, he will comply as if that were what he had been hoping for all along, and as readily as not brazenly open up a till which displays a peck of small change, without batting an eye, and all smiles and courtesy, amiably pay over the shortage and urge you to call again, escorting you to the door with a bow.

It is Anglo-Saxon nature to be irritated at this. But that is the system in China, quite as natural to them as assuring you that the cloth won't fade and that the vase is a genuine Ming, though the cloth is of two colors where a part of it has already struck the light and the vase is stamped plainly with the trademark of a concern never organized until 1925. All words in China are meaningless, and costing nothing, they are dispensed with profligate abundance everywhere on all occasions. Chinese dearly love jabber, protracted harangues over trifles and endlessly gushing eulogies and contentions which upon their face are ridiculously untrue. Foreigners, with a reverence for conciseness and accuracy, especially Americans and British, are of course decidedly out of their element in all this. They feel the fatigue of the constant resistance to this unrelaxing combat in every negotiation, large or trifling; and with this fatigue there accumulates a rising exasperation at its needlessness, and a deep chronic inward contempt for the Chinese because of it.

But you soon find that where the Chinese have a genuine talent for exasperating you, they have a double talent for placating you when you exhibit anger. No race approaches them in a talent for what we call handing out soft soap. If you have gone out of a particular shop indignant at the proprietor, lo, the next day he will likely be lying in wait with a present, a trifle that he begs you to accept as a token of old friendship. No reference will be made to his former atrocities. And he will succeed in being so plaintive, so movingly pathetic in his passion for your continued kind regard, and so skillfully histrionic in the compliments he bestows, that three to one you will accept the package of tea, or whatever it is, thank him, and silently cursing yourself for your gullibility, mumble that you will be in to see him later about that what-not he wants to sell, and which he would not sell to anyone else at twice the price.

This interprets in part what people mean when they say they like the Chinese. They mean they find them affable. The like does not embody the element of admiration of character implied in referring to members of our own or a closely similar race. To like the Chinese, an Anglo-Saxon must necessarily dismiss, in the weighing, many standards that he would employ in a judgment of a fellow Occidental. And it is true, a point to be elaborated later, that large numbers of Americans do find the Chinese likable; for their unsurpassed amiability, gracious etiquette, spontaneous lying for the expediency of the moment, and other talented diminutions of face-to-face difficulties, all act as soothing lubrication in matters where we should risk friction for honesty. Few Americans would express a liking for another American they could not respect in the matter of character. But Chinese whose entire system of standards is anathema to our own are spoken of as being well liked, and correctly so,with this subtraction in mind. You discover in China that among the Chinese friends are regarded as friends on a strictly personal basis. Thus, to Ding Ling, it matters not what sort of a rascal Sing Ming may be to the world at large, provided his treatment of Ding Ling himself is satisfactory, all according to the Book of Rites and so on. Cutting a person's acquaintance because of what he did to some unknown third party would rarely enter the head of a Chinese. In respect to their Chinese acquaintances in China, foreigners there are commonly good Romans in Rome, and maintain pleasant friendships with Chinese who, if they were Occidentals, would not be liked because they could not be respected. So when you hear foreigners mention "liking" Chinese, it may be more often than not understood to mean that they do so according to local values, accepting an individual for his agreeable qualities, and dismissing the rest, though these would be sufficient in an Occidental to rule him out altogether. One of the most popular Chinese I can think of among foreign groups in China is among his own people one of the most vicious tyrants on the scene, a thoroughly unscrupulous cut-throat and exbrigand, who not so long back expressed his irritation at one of his wives by nailing her alive in a coffin and setting her adrift down river. You will meet some Chinese, perhaps dozens, who will appear to combine with native standards of grinning grace and hospitality other qualities that we should expect in an Occidental entitled to esteem. No percentage estimate of this number is possible, naturally. Each foreigner's experience will vary. But from average experience it is fair to say that the number of such Chinese is very small relative to the whole. Sincerity of utterance is microscopically scarce, and general trustworthiness, even in common affairs, is almost equally wanting.

Some of our highly psychological brethren undertake to establish, and perhaps correctly, that in the final analysis no ethical system can be claimed as superior to any other system, that while differences may be observed they remain differences and not superiorities and inferiorities. In these informal notes herewith, laying claim to no authority on such abstruse points, no effort is made to chase down the alleys of philosophic calculus to capture truths beyond those self-evident for practical review. But in this humble earthly plane of values, it is fairly clear, in contacts with the Chinese and in looking about the country, that many of the standards they nourish are decidedly destructive to any satisfactory social and economic order.

It touches upon the obvious, but with nevertheless a direct pertinence to initial observations upon China, to reflect that almost any imaginable form of government - monarchical, republican, dictatorial, communistic, or what not-will enable a people to obtain fair dividends from the natural resources of their land, provided there is adequate patriotism and character in the governing body. And conversely, no kind of government, however perfect in organic theory, or whatever its designation, can rise above the men administering it. In the light of this self-evident interjection, it is remarkable that foreigners setting up as critical students of Chinese affairs in recent years could hail this or that political change, a change of names, as ushering in better days for the Chinese. Yet, turning back the pages to 1927, we find all sorts of enthusiasm voiced over what the then new "Nationalists" were going to do for China. Similar ballyhoo has accompanied plans for a monarchical restoration, plans for a dictatorship, and so on, all about equally silly. No rearrangements of constitutions or parliaments could overcome the ills that arise from lack of character, and no constitution or parliament alone can put character and a spirit of duty into those who hold office.

underage chinese gymnast
The Chinese government gladly provided fake passports for their underage competitors in the 2008 Olympics, an example of a widespread, official, and deep-rooted tendency to lie. The Fake of Nanking is another example of chinese official, bald-faced lying

From personal experience with Chinese officials, observation of the Chinese at large, and drawing upon the experiences of many acquaintances whose service collectively has taken them all over China into areas no one person could know intimately, it is a reasonable conviction that there are enough straightforward, honest Chinese available to man any kind of government there. This is not a personal cynicism. It merely phrases common and competent foreign judgment on the scene.

Most thoughtful foreigners in China today believe that a monarchy would be best for the country in its present state. Where trustworthiness is as scarce as it is in China, it is probably better to have a government highly centralized, requiring as few authoritative individuals as possible, in order to utilize most effectively the limited amount of honesty available. But even with a highly centralized monarchy, or dictatorship, "some delegation of responsibility in the lower official orders is unavoidable, and there are not enough reliable men in China to fill these posts.

People in America who turn with disgust from the doings of Tammany Hall, the Boo Hoo Hoff regime, and the Chicago gang, as the lowest possible in political corruption, simply fail to appreciate the real possibilities of corruption as it is seen in China. And here, at least, we have a fairly numerous corps of honest citizenry, a sort of normally neutral vigilante reserve, who step in now and then where and when things become too bad and prevent extension of the more vicious excesses. There is no such reserve of honest citizenry in China, and no sign on the horizon of any in formation for the future. I mention this because the term "corruption," in speaking of China to persons thinking of the United States, is decidedly ambiguous. The meaning is not the same, certainly, as applied in America to squandered taxes and Tammany nepotism, and in China to personal extortion right and left at the point of a bayonet, with heads chopped off for tardiness in paying or inability to pay.

Little discussion has been undertaken, in this section, of what favorable evidences there are of improvement in China through the activities of the enlightened minority. The explanation is that improvements are not a conspicuous feature on the scene. They are vastly less than a newcomer who has read the enthusiastic accounts of money-raisers for philanthropic projects and who has listened to Chinese speakers at forum discussions has been led to expect. The improvements are on paper, true enough, and if the visitor goes no farther than reading the provisions of the Nationalist Government for public health, administration of justice, prison reform, national education, agricultural advance, and so on, he will come out of China an enthusiast. But if search is made to determine the workings of these provisions, the illusion is short-lived. And what is significant, the Chinese on the spot, where they can be checked up, will not ordinarily, except in propaganda for uninformed consumption, make claims quite as extravagant as they commonly make abroad. However, they fool a good many credulous and uninvestigating visitors, including many who write books.

It is absurd to suppose that a government in Nanking, with definite control of no more than a tenth of the territory of the country, could do much, even if it sincerely desired to do its best. The point here is that while it actually does next to nothing, it utilizes all available energy to create the impression abroad that it is doing a great deal.

Such are among the first impressions gathered from travel and residence in China today. What has been sketchily surveyed here represents an effort to duplicate, as nearly as possible, the immediate information and reflections likely to be gathered by an ordinarily curious and open-minded visitor to China in 1933.

From a hodgepodge of unfamiliar names and confusing reports of unknown personalities and interests, you begin to identify trends, causes and effects. In all your interpretations, Chinese character, as you have it revealed to you twenty-four hours a day, is the clew. Whether you follow in your newspaper the details of a massacre of peasants, a political triumph for some upstart, or a new civil war, you now search instinctively for the identities of Chinese character as you have come to know them, the odd consistencies of traits as they show themselves in events large and small.

You do not think of Chinese communism or nationalism - you ponder which age-old Chinese traits may now be uppermost under that label. It is the same with the other isms. The implications are not the same as they are severally understood in other countries. All movements reaching China from without appear to be chamelionized - Chinafied - and there remains little appropriateness in a name among agitations in China that have presumably originated elsewhere. But most significant of all, you have found that Chinese do not fight for ideas, though they often give the impression of fighting under them, banner-wise.


Strife everywhere - and reading about it and hearing about it you look more often at the map of China. Superimposing the map of China on the United States, it is rather repetitious to remark that it is at extremes nearly two thousand miles from north to south and approximately the same distance from east to west. Leaving out the nondescript outlying country, China is about two-thirds as large as the United States. And everyone knows that the cultivable area is insufficient for the food needs of the people. The correct statement of the case is that the people are too numerous for the food supply. Graves take up an astonishingly large portion of the land-in some areas I have seen I should estimate a fourth. And China is much more mountainous than the United States, with immense areas of bare, rocky slopes that cannot be made useful for agriculture by any present system. The mountains have been deforested everywhere, and erosion has eaten away the soil.

Improvement of China's food production, you soon observe, has much more restricted limits than windy editorials on the problem intimate. True the people are backward in methods, but cultivation of rice and garden crops and many other things is very intensive, with careful hand labor, and the resulting yields per acre are very high. The idea that introducing a tractor on a 300-foot farm would make the rice crop larger is, of course, ridiculous. Farm machinery pays where the acreage is large in relation to the man power, but it does not follow that farm machinery will help matters where the acreage is limited and where the man power is unlimited. It would be about as intelligent to use a tractor in a hothouse or a florist's shop as in most parts of China. In the American West there is need of machines to multiply man power. Nature has taken care of that multiplication in China. Every Chinese family is a multiplication table. The yield per acre over multiplication table. The yield per acre over much of China in some crops, I understand, is higher than in most of the United States. The trouble is they haven't enough arable acres, and machinery will not create them. Improvements will be more in the matter of seed selection, eradication of plant diseases and insect pests and, to some extent, irrigation of areas in western and northern China now lacking rainfall. Eastern China, South China and most of the central area in the Yangtze valley have more than enough rain. I can never think of China without thinking of rain. It goes with the yellowness and the mud.

Peiping, formerly Peking, is roughly - accent on the roughly - a thousand miles north of Shanghai. You can get there on the famous Shanghai Express, which commonly takes about fifty hours for the run, approximately the distance from New York to Chicago. The Shanghai "Express" averages about twenty miles an hour, so dismiss expected thrills of tearing through Chinese rural antiquity at a mile a minute. And aboard it, be nonchalant if you happen to notice the cultured and well-dressed Chinese parents of some little almond-eyed toddler motion the obedient child to a cuspidor in the aisle in place of a toilet.

And apropos of the Shanghai Express, the Chinese central government tried to compel the Hollywood producer to withdraw the picture of that name from the entire world. They weren't satisfied with banning it in China, and threatened that, if the picture were shown in America or any other country, all pictures of that producer would be banned from China. It seems that "Shanghai Express" showed bandits banditting on the train, and the Chinese considered that a libelous reflection upon their celestial tranquility. But as the total of all American moving picture sales in China is only about $600,000 annually - scarcely the profit on one good hit in the world at large - the Hollywood company told the Chinese in substance to ban all they pleased. "Shanghai Express" is still showing everywhere except in China, and the producer of "Shanghai Express" is still doing business in China with other releases.

Up around Peiping you leave the rain and the green country behind, and enter a region of dust and sandstorms, of dry plains and bare hills, a region hot in summer and cold in winter. Peiping is less than a hundred miles from the sea, the Yellow Sea. Its port is Tangku, which is a sort of suburb of Tientsin.

It was here, along the Tangku-Peiping route, that the armies of the Western powers fought steadily forward in the summer of 1900 to relieve the besieged foreigners in the Legation Quarter of Peiping, when the success of a fanatical society, called the Righteous Fists (Boxers), in murdering trapped missionaries caused the heads of the Chinese Government to join in with their troops to wipe out all foreigners. Many foreigners, including the German Minister, were slain before the allied troops could reach the city from the outside world. The Chinese made no effort at defense once the foreign troops were within sight, and their armies, Government and all took to the hills. An indemnity was levied upon the Chinese for their irregularity of international etiquette in thus murderously falling upon resident foreigners in peace time. Seven years later the United States arranged to refund subsequent installments of the $25,000,000 levied, the money to be used to educate Chinese students in America. As a penalty at the time, in 1900, the Chinese suffered the sacking of Peking by foreign troops. The Empress Dowager and the rest of the court expected that the foreigners would do the natural thing and take over the capital permanently. They never got over their amazement at being allowed to come back and resume their positions. American and other troops were criticized for this vandalism of looting, as it was called. The Chinese were jubilant at getting off so lightly. The Empress Dowager, who ordered the butchery after ignorant advice that she could get away with it, so to speak, was not molested. The treaties settling the affair make odd reading, for diplomatic discourse. After lengthy preambles of good wishes and high-sounding felicitations, etc., solemn provision is made whereby this, that and the other guilty persons who initiated the massacre, other than the Empress, would be "permitted by favor of royal grace to commit suicide." Further provision was made in the treaties for foreign observers to see that full advantage would be taken of this royal indulgence.

Before many years the historic siege, and its unprecedented cir- cumstance of a professedly friendly government, without declaration of war, setting suddenly upon the diplomatic corps of all foreign nations' present to put them to the sword, was forgotten, and the Chinese regained their place of honor in the world's esteem as quaintly tranquil lovers of peace. True, a brief intermission in this esteem almost occurred in 1927, when Chinese soldiers acting under official Nationalist orders repeated the siege and butchery of Peking on a lesser scale at Nanking, an affair in which a British consular official was among those murdered. You pass Nanking on the way to Peiping. Fortunately there, in 1927, American and British gunboats were near to shell the besiegers off, and rescue those surrounded by Chinese soldiery - those who weren't already killed.

It may be observed here in passing that after each massacre of foreigners in China during the last fifty years, many pious Americans step forward to declare that such barbarism has passed, that the Chinese are henceforth an advanced, peace-loving and responsible people, of whom to suspect ill would be unreasonable as well as unkind. In the check-up to date, however, it appears that a good many foreigners in China who have undertaken to demonstrate such confidence have done nothing more than mark its last resting place with their own gravestones. A significant fact is that the worst atrocities are not perpetrated by illiterates and hoodlums, as is ignorantly supposed in America, but by Chinese of the upper strata, as in Peking in 1900.

Herbert Hoover is believed to be one of the survivors of the Boxer attack. He is said to have been in Tientsin at the time. The Boxer uprising is often called the Boxer Rebellion. This name seems to me a misnomer, for a rebellion is presumably a movement against an existing government, whereas in 1900 the Chinese Government aligned itself with the Boxers after initial Boxer successes inspired confidence.

You will hear foreigners in China say they would not be astonished at further treacherous mass efforts, officially inspired, to fall upon inadequately protected foreign colonies and murder men, women and children. Certainly the Chinese cannot be said to have advanced beyond the possibility since 1927, when their last effort in that direction was made. Even Shanghai is not safe from initial mob successes, for the reason that the foreigners there do not live in a compact foreign quarter, but are scattered here and there all over the International Settlement and the French Concession, with hundreds of thousands of Chinese spread among them, a circumstance making such a barrage fire protection as saved the foreigners at Nanking impossible, unless the foreigners could be first herded together in one spot.

And why do Chinese want to massacre foreigners?

Mainly because to the average Chinese, all foreigners are well-off, and Chinese leaders, anxious for a following and daring to do so, can always promise the privilege of looting them. Chinese armies loot their own people all the time, and murder them right and left with indifference. On the rare occasions when they dare, they do the same thing to foreigners. They dare when they think they can escape with impunity. Increasing foreign leniency encourages this attitude.

Some three hundred miles southeast from Peiping, the Shantung Peninsula of newspaper fame juts far out into salt water to form the Gulf of Chihli. The Shantung Peninsula protrudes temptingly; it is rich in resources; and so it is not surprising that some international grappling has gone on in past decades to find lodgment for various foreign flags on its coast. The material benefits have been slight, relatively, to all concerned, but staking out a few acres there means the satisfaction of having thwarted somebody else.

But aside from these political reasons, useful harbors were possible, and in a sense necessary, to provide bases for the ships that must stand ever ready to rescue foreigners in some threatened port up or down the coast of China. The proposition, often advanced, as to the right of foreigners to be in China at all is not argued here. A point made, however, is that if foreigners are going to live in China, it is imperative to keep battlecraft standing by ready to evacuate them when danger threatens, as it often does. There have been scores of evacuations of foreigners from Chinese cities in recent years, escaping altogether the notice of the average newspaper reader. But for these vigilant and ready gunboats, we should have suffered wholesale massacres of Americans on these occasions instead of peaceful evacuations. The American Navy has a summer base at Chefoo, on the Shantung Peninsula. We have no territory there, nor anywhere in China, for that matter.

The Yellow Sea, into which the Shantung Peninsula juts, is really yellow from the muddy rivers flowing into it. That is one of the few anticipations of things Chinese borne out by the reality. It is just north of Shantung that the Yellow River, the one with the particularly erratic liability of floods, flows into the sea, frequently not doing this, however, until it has first flowed over the farms of millions of Chinese and drowned a good number of the owners. Traditionally, the Yellow River divides North China from South China. This division was in early times racial, and later cultural. It is not an economic division, nor an even geographical division, for it leaves a small piece of territory north of it compared to that on the southern side. The Yangtze is really the approximate midway division, and in ordinary conversation foreigners of the southern ports think of North China as that north of Shanghai.

Inland, west from Shanghai, if you travel up the Yangtze, you come first to Nanking, scene of the 1927 outrage mentioned. Then a day and a half or two days farther up is Kiukiang. Then six hundred miles from Shanghai you arrive at Hankow, most important city in central China. Changsha, which you have remembered as the site of Yale in China, American educational enterprise, is southwest of Hankow.

Hankow has not been the same, so every one wil1 tell you, since the British gave up their concession there in 1927. British residents all over China regard that gesture as a serious matter for foreigners in China. The withdrawal of the concession, so British residents complain, came about after a sentimental Labor Government in London aspired to follow with undue haste in the sentimental paths of the United States, with the result that the Chinese accepted the abandonment of the concession as evidence of timidity on the part of the British. In any event, Hankow is today one of the most antiforeign cities in China, with the Chinese there among the most disagreeable to deal with. While Chinese spokesmen abroad were declaring the gentleness of brotherhood and love of peace among the people, the mayor of Hankow placarded that city with anti-foreign posters. Continuing up theYangtze, generally westward, you come, in order, to Ichang, Wanhsien and Chunking. The last, to be exact, is 1427 miles up the Yangtze from Shanghai. There is no railway from Shanghai there, and the boat trip may take two weeks or more, depending upon the current. An airplane service functions rather irregularly west from Shanghai, with the planes flying high to avoid rifle fire from the ground. A Chinese turned loose with a gun may be trusted to shoot at almost anything not a part of his immediate family or gang.

The Yangtze basin is a third as large as the United States, and supports, somehow, a population estimated at 180 million people. The Yangtze is the busiest waterway in Asia. It carries sixty per cent of China's export trade, and ocean-going steamers dock at Hankow, 600 miles from its mouth. The richest agricultural province in China lies at the head of ordinary navigation. This is Szechuen: or Szechwan - take your choice. Its population is estimated at seventy million, and it is at present ruled mainly by two rival war chiefs, both independent of the Nanking central government.

On the last stretch of travel up the Yangtze you pass through the Yangtze Gorges, certainly to be ranked as among the first two or three scenic wonders of the world. Not as deep, of course, as the Colorado canyons of Arizona, they are more comparable to the Royal Gorge west of Denver, with a narrowness that accentuates the height of the great steep walls of stone. These gorges comprise the one really superb scenic splendor accessible to the general tourist in China - if he can spare the thirty days for the round trip.

Foreign powers with interests to protect along the Yangtze maintain a patrol service of gunboats. This service enables a foreign passenger vessel or freight craft to summon speedy aid by wireless if grounded and threatened with looting by the Chinese along the shore, and tends to keep down piracy out in the stream. A favorite amusement of the Chinese on the upper Yangtze bank, where the river is narrow, is to shoot at vessels passing up and down. Sometimes the intent is to disable the man at the wheel, and thus cause the vessel to ground, where it can be looted, but more often it appears to be just aimless Chinese cussedness. Passenger boats on the Yangtze have steel bulkheads as an extra protection for officers, crew and passengers, and some of them are equipped also with steel emergency shutters. A detail of marines not infrequently travels aboard American passenger-carrying vessels in the Yangtze service. They have orders not to fire until fired upon. When the familiar shots begin to plink against the smokestack and armor plating from a hut or thicket along the shore; the marines open up the machine gun in high glee.

Most of the Chinese passengers, both on foreign vessels in the Yangtze service and on foreign vessels in the China coastal service, are locked behind steel bars for the duration of the voyage between ports, and as extra precaution beyond this menagerie-wise transportation, an armed foreign guard in relays keeps watch over them from outside the bars.

This is necessary in order to prevent pirates smuggling themselves aboard, capturing the bridge and looting the ship in cahoots with an allied gang somewhere en route. Sensitive newly-arrived foreigners may be at first disposed to look upon this rigorous code for Chinese passengers as humiliating. But it is merely necessary to observe the way Chinese passengers prefer the relative safety and reliability of foreign craft, to the hazards of traveling aboard one of their own ships, to see the prudence and justice of such methods. And to the average Chinese there is no hardship or dishonor in traveling behind bars and being watched with a rifle. It would, in fact, be impossible for a foreigner in his sternest moments to conjure any savagery comparable to what Chinese receive all the time as a matter of course from their own people. These Chinese deck passengers are treated with amiable consideration in every instance I have observed aboard foreign craft, but at the same time with an underlying firmness that tends to discourage any treacherous attempts. Observing the success of this policy, and the complete accord that it engenders, you will regret at times that we have not drafted some of these tattooed old weatherbeaten captains of the China merchant service into Washington to help draft our Far East policy. Their tactics are reasonable to Chinese standards, and occasion no resentment. On the other hand, a great deal of our sentimentality and resultant indulgence is completely misconstrued by the Chinese, and in the end they appear to feel more resentment toward us for it. This point will come in for consideration in more detail later in this book.

On the subject of these piracies, the survivor of one of them, now a mate on the Haiyang of the Jardine Matheson line, told me about an amazing example of Chinese hardihood and patience. The fight with the pirates, who had come aboard as passengers, had lasted all night. The Indian rifleman bridge guard and one or two of the officers were dead, and the pirates, at bay, had set fire to the ship. A British destroyer summoned by wireless arrived and took the burning vessel in tow for Hong Kong. The pirates and suspected pirates among the passengers were put in irons. Some had jumped overboard. Later one of the pirates who had leaped overboard was discovered hanging on to the ship's rudder, where he had clung for hours despite the motion of the vessel and the wash of the waves.

Traveling south from Shanghai the coast becomes more elevated, and finally rugged with mountains of attractive scenic effect, rising in places to around three thousand feet within a few miles of the surf. The first port south is Foochow, two days from Shanghai. Then comes Amoy, Swatow, and finally Hong Kong, which is an island slightly off the China coast at its southern extremity. Hong Kong is about as far south of Shanghai as Peiping is north - about a thousand miles. Hong Kong is not Chinese, but British. The climate becomes warmer rapidly down here. Shanghai has a climate moderately cold in winter, with snow now and then, and severely hot in summer, much like Washington or Norfolk, only with more rain and cloudy weather. But Foochow, five hundred miles south, is the center of a subtropical orange-growing area, and at Amoy and Swatow they grow bananas. The Chinese city farthest south along the coast is Canton, overnight and up-river from Hong Kong. Canton is slightly farther south than Havana, Cuba, but with a chillier winter climate. All southeastern China is mountainous, or at least ruggedly hilly. No highways exist north and south along this coastal area, nor are there any railroads. There is not a trolley, or anything else equally modern in transportation; between Shanghai and Hong Kong, and in this respect, the area is like most of inland China. Millions of Chinese have never seen an automobile, a telephone, a locomotive, or an electric light, and there are millions that have never seen a foreigner.

As an illustration of the slow penetration of Western science, I may mention that in Foochow, where I lived for ten months, even rickshas were regarded as an innovation there a few years ago. Twenty years ago not a wheeled conveyance was known in the city, not even a wheelbarrow or cart, though Foochow has a population estimated at nearly a million, and has carried on foreign trade regularly for nearly a hundred years. It was the chief tea city in the clipper ship days and has been a sort of Athens of foreign educational enterprise for three-quarters of a century, with foreign schools and mission colleges and churches dotting every hill. Even now, in 1933, it is impossible to get out of Foochow with an automobile, because no roads exist. The farmers of that area are their own draft animals, and need no roads wider than narrow paths through the rice fields.

Amoy and Swatow are slightly more modern. Amoy has a harbor permitting sea-going vessels to load and unload cargo within the city, and its wealth has been increased by many Chinese who have made money in the Straits Settlements and returned there to live. An international settlement on Kulangsu, an attractive island in the harbor, provides a safety factor of considerable appeal. The Chinese in Amoy have the reputation of being the most agreeable to deal with of all those on the South China coast. In Swatow, the next stop, they are by general consensus the meanest. Swatow is where the finer Chinese needlework we import into the United States is made. A good deal of the fine needlework we import from France as "French" is made there also, the French importing it, sewing a French label on it to catch the American fancy, then shipping it on to New York. Prices for this product, when I was there last during the present year, were from a tenth to a twentieth of the prevailing Fifth Avenue prices. The best workers are little children, girls. They sit hour after hour in rows by long tables, patiently pulling and threading. The usual arrangement is an apprenticeship of three years when they work only for board and keep, after which they may earn ten cents or so a day in the cities; by recent American exchange value. Inland from Swatow, farmed-out needlework, so one of the leading dealers there told me, is paid for at the rate of two or three cents a day, American money, for the best grade of work.

Wages everywhere are low according to American standards. A ricksha coolie does well to clear $2.50 a month, American money, at the exchange rates prevailing during 1931 and 1932. The currency used is called Mexican, from the adoption years ago of the big Mexican dollars as a medium of trade in China. The Chinese at the time had no satisfactory coin, nothing better than a shoe-shaped lump of silver called a tael, worth roughly a fourth more than the Mexican dollar. During the present century Chinese silver dollars were introduced, at an approximate value of the Mexican silver dollars. The so-called normal exchange with China is two Mex for one dollar American, but this rare has not been in effect since the decline in silver prices during recent years. In 1932 Chinese dollars, or Mex, sold at around five to one for American dollars. At the present time, October, 1933, Chinese dollars are worth around thirty cents American money.

Paper money is not extensively used. For one thing, the banks of issue are commonly banks people hesitate to trust, and then counterfeiting is very common. A good deal of silver money is counterfeited also, but every time you hand out a silver piece in China the taker will ring it against something to test the timbre. After you have had a number of bogus dollars and smaller pieces palmed off on you, you become pretty good at testing yourself. The exchange shops, which are everywhere, stamp each dollar coming into their tills with what is called a chop, that is, a stamp bearing the name of the shop. A purplish dye is used which is supposed to turn yellow if the coin is not good silver.

Chinese subsidiary coinage is a hodgepodge. The majority of the people are not sufficiently well off to have much contact with silver dollars, and deal mainly in coppers and silver ten-cent and twenty-cent pieces. But these ten- and twenty-cent pieces are usually negotiable only in the province where they are issued, so that a Shanghai ten-cent piece, for example, will not be accepted in Amoy or Foochow. A further complication arises because ten dimes do not make a dollar nor do five twenty-cent pieces make a dollar. The rate of exchange between small coins and the dollar varies widely. Just before the Chinese New Year the lower denominations of coins become very cheap, with twelve or fourteen dimes selling for a dollar. This is because the country people, who have hoarded their money through the year, swarm suddenly into the cities and towns to purchase goods, swamping the market with small money, the only kind they ordinarily get their hands on.

But that is not the end of the confusion - it is only the beginning. The ordinary transactions of life for the majority are carried on with coppers, big fellows about the size of the obsolete American two-cent piece or the present English penny. These are called cents in reference to Chinese dollars. But the number of cents to a dollar varies from day to day, and on the same day from city to city. Thus Shanghai may quote three hundred coppers to the dollar on a given date, while another city will quote two hundred and eighty, and so on. The next week the exchange in Shanghai may be two hundred and ninety, and in Canton, two hundred and seventy-five or three hundred. Some of the military moguls take advantage of the situation by posting an arbitrary exchange rate between shops and customers weekly, then alternately calling in all the small money or dollars, fixing a new rate of exchange and pocketing the difference, keeping this up twice a month or so through the year. A profit of twenty per cent or more is thus possible monthly or semi-monthly on all silver money in circulation. There is no use trying to beat the game by smuggling the coins to another territory. As mentioned, the subsidiary silver coins are commonly not negotiable elsewhere.

At last year's good exchange, an American dollar could be changed for $5.15 Chinese. At 300 coppers to the Chinese dollar, this meant over 1500 coppers to the American dollar! The Chinese small coins of brass, those with a hole in the middle, are now little used in the port cities, though employed to some extent in remote inland areas. There are ten of these brass pieces to a copper, or 15,000 to the American dollar, theoretical exchange, though in practice you never receive one. Rising values have rendered their purchasing power so low that they have been superseded by the larger coppers. The Chinese call these small holed brass pieces "cash." Prices are still quoted in cash, just as the term mills still occurs in our school arithmetic. Certain kinds of services in China are quoted in taels, another nonexistent coin. Thus rents are quoted at so many taels per month, a doctor's bill is rendered in taels, and so on, all for no reason in common sense. But as many prices are quoted only in taels, and taels do not exist, elaborate arithmetic is needed a dozen times a day to arrive at values in dollars. You can carry a bank account in taels if you like, but if so, you cannot draw checks on the deposit in Chinese dollars. More things are quoted in dollars than in taels, so most accounts are carried in dollars. Many people carry accounts in both taels and dollars, writing checks in either according to how the bills are rendered.

Speaking in terms of scenery, there are views here and there in China that may be called "pretty," and a few, such as some of the scenes going up the Min, that are remarkably fine - comparable to the Hudson around Bear Mountain or the Delaware at the Gap. But in the country as a whole first-rate scenery is scarce. The usual landscape is a choice of muddy or dusty plains or barish rocky mountains, commonly rendered further unappealing by deforestation and centuries of resultant erosion. China is everywhere interesting for is people, but in very few places for its scenery. The abiding impression is likely to be one of muddy yellowness - yellow rivers, yellow delta flats, yellow or brown eroded hills, yellow people.

But there is plenty of green and blue and red. The growing rice in South China spreads green across a level valley in scenes of sun or rain, and above it the terraced mountain slopes curve in odd green streaks like some new kind of modern furniture. The dampness of the air softens distance, and the hues are those of a Chinese print. Distant dots are always moving - the ever-toiling peasants, battling a foredoomed futility on every score except the chance of survival. A phrase of Somerset Maugham's comes to mind, "The Chinese...strove with eternity." And so they do, with to date the match a draw.

The blue comes in with the Chinese coolie and peasant dress. They wear a coarse cloth, blue when new, something on the order of denim. Of course it is usually faded, and spotted with patches of other colors, equally faded. The red comes in with the numerous weddings, funerals, and other ceremonies. These events call for an abundance of red tissue paper, red banners, lanterns and so on. And when paint is used at all around a Chinese shop or temple it is mostly red. Very few buildings are painted.

A sort of moldy desolation, withal surrounded by animation, stares at you everywhere in China. In spite of their industry, in the sense of always puttering about, the Chinese are without doubt the most slipshod people on earth. The common huts are always about to fall to pieces, a not infrequent occurrence. Their roofs leak, and the mud walls are usually cracked and partly knocked to pieces. Mending anything before the imminent danger of its falling upon his head, or upon his livestock (a more important concern), would be unthinkable to a Chinese. Even the premises of the well-to-do are almost invariably in an advanced state of disrepair, though the family has an abundance of money for luxuries. Many tourists who have fed their knowledge on vague ideas of Eastern splendors have failed to delimit the geographical applications, and expect to find in China the sort of man-made glories that belong to India. China has no temples to compare with those to be seen elsewhere in the Orient. The pagodas are a little better, but most of them are crumbly affairs, with no stonework or decoration of any special quality. They are simply towers in the Chinese manner.

The blending of intricacy with magnitude, as seen in India and North Africa, is nowhere in China satisfactorily evident. Their best structure, as a spectacle of art, would not rank fourth place compared to what India produced in the seventeenth century, or Europe before or after the Renaissance, or the Ottoman Empire before its final decline. The average Chinese temple, a mangy affair with low roof and wooden beams, has no art about it to speak of, and inside and out is less impressive than an ordinary chop suey joint. The walls of Peiping, built by conquerors of the Chinese, make a profound impression for somber, square-faced immensity.

But there the effect is perhaps as much from the spirit of history about them and from the setting as from the walls themselves. City walls at large in China were never anything impressive as works of art or architecture, being usually of roughly fitted stones for a frame with a dirt filter. I have never seen the ruins of Aztec or Mayan cities, but photographs and reading leave the conclusion that the Chinese apogee of architectural spirit did not exceed that of those peoples. Certainly it came nowhere near that of Angkor in what is now French Indo-China. One of the most surprising features of Chinese architecture is that outstanding permanent monuments of any kind are scarce. Their temples in their heyday were rarely built for permanence, and accordingly no very old ones are to be seen. Nothing in Chinese records indicates that any particularly fine ones ever existed. The traveler looking for signs of antiquity in China will not find many in their buildings. Where Rome and Greece abound with really noble edifices standing recognizable after more than two thousand years, China has none. For a land where building stone was plentiful in areas of foremost culture, this is a strange inconsistency. Possibly their veneration for the past banished all desire to memorialize themselves for posterity in architecture. But it is odd, with their respect for graves, that no notable mausoleums were built in the past, as in India and Egypt, despite an equal abundance of cheap or free labor.

You find in China that from Shanghai there are just three main directions in which you can travel safely today: north through the coastal area toward Peiping, by rail or by steamer through the Yellow Sea; west upon the Yangtze by steamer; or south along the coast by steamer. There is no way to go far west by rail, nor can you go more than a few miles south by rail. There is not a mile of railway between the Shanghai area and Canton, in the extreme South, a distance of nearly a thousand miles.

Between Shanghai and Hong Kong, there is no ready means of penetrating inland at any of the ports of call. As mentioned, there are no railways along this coast, and the rivers are navigable only by small native craft, with haulage over the rapids in places a slow and tedious business. For years past, inland travel in this area has been dangerous even in the most tranquil parts, and over most of the area it is now practically equivalent to suicide for a foreigner. Daring missionaries venture up the Min River from Foochow to a distance of 250 miles during "quiet" periods. But of the few who have undertaken mission work in this direction in recent years, not all have come back. Their graves bespeak a faith above discretion. From Amoy it is possible to go inland by automobile a hundred miles or so now and then. None of the trans-Pacific or round-the-world boats calls anywhere along the South China coast, because there is nothing there to justify a stop. The flour, petroleum products, canned goods, machinery, hardware, cloth and lumber imported from the United States are reshipped from Shanghai or Hong Kong on coastal vessels, and the exported tea, antiques, needlework and other things find an outlet from the same centers.

Looking at China as a whole, it may be reckoned that not more than one twentieth of it could be called safe for a foreigner to venture into during recent years. And supposing the country safe, large areas on the map are not approachable by highways, railways, or rivers navigable by ordinary passenger vessels. Of such areas, most of those in the north could be reached by cart or saddle. In parts of North China canals provide transportation. You see few canals over most of South China, except irrigation and drainage canals. In the southeast, horses are practically unknown and no carts exist. There, are no paths connecting most of the cities that even a ricksha could traverse. Travel is accordingly on foot or by sedan chair. And do not disappoint yourself by visualizing a sedan chair on the order of those used in eighteenth century French plays, elaborate gilded and carved affairs, bearing rich silk curtains and lambrequins. Very few Chinese, where sedan chairs are used, ever beheld such a thing. The kind you are invited to sit in is little more than a rack between two swaying and creaking bamboo poles, borne by two, three, or four coolies; according to the speed you find necessary. They have a slightly better type for town use, which have a top and bamboo portieres on the bamboo framework. They are used for funerals and weddings mostly, and are uncomfortably stuffy.

You will remember the amazing leg muscles of the chair coolies, and remember too the astonishing huge lump, like an odd malformation, on the back of each coolie's neck, where the yoke of the chair shafts bears down. These dromedary-like lumps become as large as half a small cantaloupe. The rise and fall of those sweating brown shoulders to the creaking of the bamboo chair and the rhythmic grunting of the coolies, nimble-footed over the stepping stones across rice valleys and up steep-terraced mountain slopes, abide in memory forever.

And another odd thing noticed is that exposure to the sun turns a Chinese to nearly the color of a dark brown Negro. Their skin loses its yellowness - they become darker than a dark mulatto, with a really blackish tinge across their thin and sinewy backs. But the effect of drinking the wine of the country is equally curious. Within a few minutes after a few gambeis - Chinese for "bottoms up" - a Chinese complexion usually turns a livid pink.

Between the banana and palm tropics of the extreme south and the grim Siberian frontier country two thousand miles north, between the ever-rainy China Sea coast and the mostly dry and scrubby and stony desolation of the high western boundary two thousand miles inland in Central Asia, live the famous four hundred million. There may be more, there may be less. The population is an estimate, ranging from a low of three hundred and forty million to nearly five hundred million. One fact is not disputed - there are plenty of Chinese for all practical and impractical purposes.

Only a small fraction of the population get as much to eat from day to day as they could comfortably put away. The majority exist on a hairline division from starvation, and a flood, famine, or too much battling brings on acute want, not only for individuals but for whole areas. The number who starve to death every year reaches in into the millions. The reason why more do not starve will be discussed in its connection with the clan system.

For a foreigner, one of the immediate surprises in China is the excellence of the food. Most foreigners, in fact nearly all, declare Chinese food among the better-off Chinese classes to be the best in the world. Personally, I should agree. Neither a French chef nor the Aunt Jemima type of the legendary Southern household could come within a saucepan's throw of even a fair-tomiddling Chinese. They are born cooks. Chinese food in China bears no remote resemblance to what is served as Chinese food in America. Chop suey, of course, does not exist and never did anywhere west of Honolulu, and I never met a Chinese who had not been out of China who had ever heard of chow mein.

Chinese dishes in the leading items are often indistinguishable from our own in appearance, but have a vastly better taste. Sloppy mixtures, the common conception among outsiders of their fare, are if anything scarcer on a Chinese table than on an average American table. Their meats are generally roasts, their rice is steamed to near dryness, and their vegetables are cooked separately. Each article is usually eaten separately, too. Of course, meats and stringy things are cut before serving so they can be lifted on chopsticks. For a foreigner, the absence of bread and butter and drinking water may be bothersome, and his tact will be sorely tried to avoid eating any of the prize delicacy, raw fish - to eat which, for a foreigner, is to flirt with severe and possibly permanent illness.

The soup comes near the middle of the meal in China, sometimes near the end, and the dessert may come toward the first. Waiters keep handing everybody present boiling hot steamed towels to mop the hands and face. The refreshing effect of this is surprising.

Wine is served hot in tiny shallow cups, smaller than tea cups. It is a brackish, tart stuff, but not unpleasant, rather strong, often about as strong as port or sherry. It is more palatable to most foreigners than the Japanese sake, pronounced sakky, which tastes like a mixture of kerosene and onions. (Few strangers can down a cup of sake the first trial without an impolite facial expression.)

At Chinese feasts, and that is precisely the word for the repasts you are invited to, nearly everything is very thoroughly cooked, and served hot. For the cautiously hygienic, that is a comfort. Feasts begin early in the evening and may last four or five hours, with from a dozen to thirty courses. Etiquette, rigid in regard to seating, the order of eating and drinking, toasts and responses and so on, is nevertheless not according to Emily Post, nor even the Marquis of Queensberry. Everybody at the table eats out of a common bowl in the middle. The clashing chop sticks in this greedy melee sound like a competition in typing. Sideswiping and midair collisions come thick and fast even between the most formal and cultured Chinese, and are thought nothing of, so that within a round or two the beautiful embroidered tablecloth, handsomely decorated with flowers, is slopped right and left with fragments of meat and spots of gravy. To make a clean piercing stroke into the middle of the table and snip a morsel between the slippery round sticks requires careful judgment of distance and timing, something like the skill called for in fencing. If you don't like a mouthful of what you extract, it is all right to spew it out on the floor and try again. (The floor is more often than not stone or hard-packed clay, and few Chinese use rugs or carpets.) The shark's fins, ginseng, birds' nests, pigeon livers and many ether delicacies favored by prosperous Chinese are eaten in the belief that they are aphrodisiacs.

The home where such a feast is given, that of, say, a representatively well-to-do Chinese without foreign training, will present astonishing contrasts. The oil paper used instead of glass panes in the lattice windows will be more often than not amazingly dirty, torn here and there, with new finger holes poked by the women members of the family. They, never appearing at a formal feast where there are invited guests, will give you the creeps by keeping their eyes against these holes in order to see what they cannot share. Eyes stare at you in the dim light by the hour from holes and chinks all around. The women, children, and innumerable servant class hangers-on seem in dread of missing a single gesture or unintelligible word of the foreign barbarian. The attendants who serve the dishes will be unkempt and dirty. But if your host is moved to show you his chamber of art treasures, the revelation of his delicate taste in ancient silk paintings and old procelains will be in strange contrast to his seeming crudity of instinct at the table. He will not chatter of art values. His sensitive eye as he admires them, saying nothing, tells the genuineness of his emotion. He does not expect appreciation of them in a foreign barbarian. His tranquil admiration, sufficient unto itself, requires of you no intrusive word of mutual pleasure.

A people who show surprising sensitivity of feeling and at the same time appall us with their seeming crudity of instinct, accomplished in craftmanship yet living ever in houses falling to pieces, alert in business yet unable to make a success of large business themselves, quoting proverbs about truth in every breath and not to be believed in anything, always exasperating us and then mollifying our exasperation with a talent all their own, always busy and never getting anything done - four hundred million of them, upon a background of green paddies seen through slow rain, swirling yellow rivers with bobbing junks and rattan sails, above and through all the smell of a damp moldiness amid spiced cooking - that is China and the Chinese.


In China all the foreigners talk about the real Chinese, assure you that those you know are not the real Chinese, and try to tell you where and how to find the real ones.

It appears that the real Chinese are scarce, very scarce. After following innumerable clues in various parts of China, after tracking through peasant rice paddies, bumping up and down hundreds a of dim-lit cobbled alleys and foul-smelling native streets in small and large Chinese cities in rickshas and sedan chairs, relieved at times by teas or feasts among the most cultivated and elite well-to-do and eminent Chinese that the country offers, with the added experience of contacts and acquaintance among the highly studious and allegedly intellectual group, I am convinced that I never met any of the real Chinese. I do not believe any "real" Chinese exist.

Once or twice I thought I was hot on the scent, but always somebody came along afterwards to tell me that those I had in mind were not the real ones. The real article should be searched for in another place. The real Chinese are like Brussels sprouts in Brussels, or chop suey in Shanghai, mighty hard to get at. During the first few weeks I was in China, I found that the missionaries, the business people and the government people all have their ideas of who the real Chinese are, and that even within these classes there are varieties of individual convictions on the subject.

But obviously to find out what sort of people the Chinese are is to take them as they come, the viciously bad, the patently good and the torpidly neutral, the innumerable dirty and the occasional clean ones.

It is possible to say almost anything about the Chinese and have the statement true, and yet with proper modifications decidedly untrue. For example, the Chinese seem to do more washing and slopping around with pails of water everywhere than any other race on the globe, and at the same time they are among the dirtiest people to be found. They certainly approach the championship for laziness, and yet their claim to the title of most industrious is hardly open to dispute. They are perhaps the most unreliable and tricky to do business with of any large racial group, and yet under certain conditions a Chinese will make incredible sacrifices to meet his obligations, and die of humiliation if he can't. These latter conditions, be it noted, are rare as things go in China, but within every foreigner's acquaintance they recur now and then to present to present a poignant spectacle of an admirable fidelity to pride.

The Chinese inherently love civic tranquility, and yet historically and at the present time they are among the bloodiest and mass turbulent of nations. Their language is chock full of proverbs about peace and good will, and yet a short walk through any national Chinese street will reveal more family rows, angry bickerings over trifles and more general quarreling than anywhere else in the world. No other people approach them in their exalted veneration for learning, and yet at all times only a microscopic few could so much as read and write, while probably not one in forty can do so today. They are famed for their prudence in money matters? Yet their love of gambling amounts to such an insane passion that every year millions are ruined to become beggars or suicides. The achieved certain principles of democracy long before any Western country, yet nowhere has tyranny been traditionally so fierce and oppressive, nor is it today anywhere else so outrageously cruel. They are the least warlike of nations, yet the constant bloodshed through the centuries in China appalls the historians, and today has probably more soldiers under arms than all the rest of the world combined. They are among the most ingenious of peoples in making the most out of their natural resources, yet tens of millions never get enough to eat.

Such contrasts of facts are, when stated on paper, bewildering. Close at hand, as the moving picture unreels its mystery before you in toiling coolie caravans, slow-rolling strange junks upon the waves of yellow muddy rivers, in the robed processions of aged priests before monasteries set high in cool pines above green valleys, in thicktrafficked ricksha swarms that leave barefoot human tracks in slush and snow, in the chauffeur-driven automobiles of the rich war lords and money kings as they whir past - the scene is more than a mere intellectually puzzling human drama. It is the most stupendous gripping spectacle of contemporary history in a world running riot in all corners with upside down craziness and fast-moving contradictions of despair, mass agony and individual triumph.

If the definition of the "real Chinese" is to be determined by preponderance of numbers, then certainly the real Chinese must be found in the coolie class or among the peasant class, which, while not strictly designated coolie, is of the same outlook. The coolies are at least the most conspicuous feature of the China scene. In them, too, we may look for some of the really native characteristics, unclouded by intellectual attainments which do not change racial instincts, but may serve to conceal them until they are betrayed in an emergency. In the experience of most foreigners there is no substantial difference in China between the instincts of the topmost and the bottom class of natives. In both are found characteristics, fundamentally admirable and fundamentally deplorable, with individual exceptions plentiful in both. Where a foreigner is at some disadvantage, ricksha or sampan coolies will at times cause considerable annoyance. Even in Shanghai, if no foreign police protection is in sight, ricksha coolies already well paid will at times carry their insults to the point of throwing stones, or trying to hold back another ricksha coolie with whom the tourist may wish to ride away. In some cities, particularly Swatow, where steamers commonly anchor out in the stream instead of docking, the sampan coolies who have agreed to take a passenger to his ship at a certain price will endeavor to get him well out in the water distant from either the ship or the shore and hold him up for an exorbitant sum.

Swatow, by general consensus of veterans, is declared to have the meanest coolies in China, and that is saying a lot. Not a great while before I was there in April, 1932, a foreigner lost his life in a manner illustrative of coolie character. The details as related to me were that the foreigner, a sailor, I believe, was returning to his ship late at night in a sampan. After paying the sampan man off, the latter as usual started his clamor for more money. Not heeding him, the sailor started up the gangplank. The Chinese scrambled up after him, evidently grabbing at his legs or clothing (Chinese coolies never show any hesitation in putting their filthy hands on you). The sailor kicked down with his foot, and unintentionally gave the sampan man such a crack that he was knocked off into the water.

With more impulsive heroics than good judgment, the sailor instantly leaped into the dark water himself, and after a little effort heaved the Chinese into his sampan. Here the moral of the story comes in: the Chinese was no sooner rescued and back in his boat than he seized an oar or a boathook, bashed in the head of the sailor, who was still swimming, then hastily rowed away. An officer on watch on the ship's deck above fired a shot at the escaping Chinese to no effect, and he soon disappeared in the darkness. The sailor was drowned.

This incident, like others detailed here, could of course occur anywhere in the world. They are not related, however, to show what has occurred in China with any hint that they might be limited exclusively to that country. They are samples of what is representative, not exceptional. Of course, the precise duplication of a sailor rescuing a Chinese and being drowned for it does not happen daily, but less serious occurrences of the same sort do come to light daily, on a wholesale scale and with a consistency making that class of happenings endemically characteristic of China as of nowhere else.

In Western thought and moral philosophy, we are accustomed to regard certain impulses as common to all mankind, and assertive under the same conditions among all normal individuals. Some of these impulses, residence in China soon teaches, are certainly not common to all mankind, very definitely not to the Chinese. Occidentals are disposed to think of gratitude, for example, as an instinctive response to consideration and kindness, resulting in at least an impulse in the beneficiary to exempt the benefactor from malice that might be held toward other fellow men. Not so in China. Efforts in behalf of a Chinese do not mean that that Chinese will assuredly show any extra regard for the persons extending assistance. He may or he may not.

Historically, a few have, and a vastly greater number have not. Gratitude, in the shape of reciprocated kindness and consideration, cannot be expected in the average run of experience with Chinese.

Instinctive sympathy is another trait which we in the West are prone to regard as normal in creatures above the brute. But this view certainly cannot include all the human family.

In much of China - perhaps all of it, I am not personally sure - Chinese traveling in small passenger boats up and down the rivers commonly travel two together. The reason is that if one becomes ill while traveling alone, the captain or boat owner of the Chinese raft will at once toss him off and abandon him on the superstition that if he should die on board the event might bring bad luck to the boat. Hence a passenger will take a relative or a trusted friend, or a friend he hopes he can trust, by way of a safeguard, to intervene and perhaps save his life should sudden illness develop.

Apologists for the Chinese point out that in such a case the boat captain is merely following the rigid superstitions he has inherited, and for which he is not in his ignorance responsible. But there seems more to the matter than that. I have never seen, and I have not encountered anyone else who has seen, a Chinese stricken with grief in the act of fulfilling his obligations of superstition against the evident dictates of human feeling. What we see among them is complete indifference to supreme distress in anyone of their immediate family or associations, even where the most trifling effort would assist the afflicted person.

Anywhere and at almost any time in China, you can see a cart fallen on a man or a horse, or some similar accident, plentiful in the crowded streets, with curious onlookers not stirring a hand to lift the injured out of his predicament. This indifference to fellow suffering seems by all evidence to be distinctly Oriental. The anecdote of the Good Samaritan in the Bible suggests that an un- willingness to aid a suffering stranger was the established etiquette around Palestine at that time, since the Good Samaritan who lent a hand, and did nothing more than almost any passing motorist would do in similar circumstances among us today, was looked upon as a highly exceptional chap. At corresponding stages of civilization and culture, most Occidental races appear to have exhibited vastly greater advances in the cultivation of fellow-feeling than most Oriental races. The earliest records that survive of the Greeks, the Romans, Britons and other Europeans, indicate that ready assistance to a fellow creature was general where no enmity prevailed. And we may gather from accounts of American Indian fighting that those forest savages would at times make strenuous efforts to rescue a wounded brave on a field of conflict, even when the brave was not a close family connection of the potential rescuers. In fact, manifestations of this emotion we commonly regard as human appear now and then among the higher forms of fourfooted life. African game hunters present well-authenticated accounts of such occurrences as a badly wounded elephant being assisted to cover by his comrades. And anyone who has witnessed the wailing grid of a herd of seals at the death of one of their number will never believe that the impulses of sympathy and sorrow, as distinct from a realization of personal loss, are absent among them.

But the Chinese appear to be one of the notable exceptions to the higher zoology. The interesting evidence in the matter is not only that throughout their ancient centuries of advances in other particulars they failed to develop any credo of fellow-sympathy. It is that they appear to have in the very crib and core of their molecules almost complete insulation against its infection. Moral philosophers and religious propagandists have not been lacking through the centuries to urge upon them a more generous personal outlook. But with deceptive initial successes here and there, quickly expiring, aims of altering Chinese character in the matter of engendering ideas of fellowfeeling have failed. It is not maintained by thinking observers that the Chinese cannot be changed in this respect. It is simply that their resistance to such change has been shown to be victorious to date, and is still as staunch as ever.

The regular procedure of a Chinese army on home soil is to seize as many coolies as desired for draft animals. Accordingly, when army movements are rumored in a Chinese city, you will find the streets deserted by the usually swarming coolies. A coolie snatched from between the shafts of his ricksha by a soldier is put to the most grueling work, with food a matter of distinct uncertainty. Chinese military outfits, except a few of the showtroops on view around the big centers, commonly carry little or no commissary equipment, the troops foraging off the people wherever they go with their rifles as meal tickets. Once enmeshed in the army, the seized coolie, who has no rifle, is hence at a decided disadvantage in getting anything to eat. For material prudence on the part of the "employing" soldier he may get enough to sustain him at work and reflect that he is lucky.

The fiendish cruelty of the soldiers to these impressed workers is appalling. Clubs and rifle barrels are laid on seemingly for the sheer pleasure of it, without observable provocation on the part of the coolies. A consular acquaintance of mine, who was relating a trip he made to salvage a house servant corraled by the soldiers, mentioned seeing a weazened, decrepit old man, so feeble he could hardly hobble about, snatched on the street by a soldier and ordered to shoulder a pack. After repeated clubbings the old fellow still could not get the load to his shoulders, whereupon the soldier, after exhausting the expediency of beatings, gave him a hand and put the pack to his shoulders. With a few more blows for luck, the old man staggered off, afraid to bend his knees lest he collapse.

The lot of coolies forced to accompany an army as pack carriers is hard, even for China. They will, as expediency suggests, be forced up into danger areas where the soldiers themselves are reluctant to go. If captured by the "enemy," that is, the momentarily opposing gang of hoodlums, they are commonly shot as captives, thus helping to swell the "enemy" casualty list irrespective of the fact that their participation on the side of their masters was obviously involuntary and enforced. It is said that many of the "prisoners taken," in the habitual Chinese fighting, are made up extensively of these thousands of coolies drafted in such a fashion. It may be added that "prisoners taken" in reports of Chinese conflict might in many cases be translated as "opposing forces slain." If the mood recommends, and it very commonly does, captured troops are butchered by the victors. With all the millions of soldiers engaged in intermittent conflict in China, it is worth noting that there are no military prison camps to mention. No facilities exist for feeding captured forces. Food and shelter are too scarce to be wasted in such a fashion, and the idea of dispensing anything to a useless enemy would be absolutely incomprehensible to a Chinese, even if the supply were plentiful.

Furthermore, deception and treachery are so usual, and so taken for granted by all contenders in China, that no army there could muster guards who might be trusted to see that the prisoners were not aided in escaping. Arthur Smith, who died in California last year after lifelong work in China, has in one of his books on Chinese character an observation the truth of which impresses itself on a foreigner more and more, the longer he lives among the Chinese: "Nobody trusts anybody else in China, for the excellent reason that he knows that under similar circumstances he could not be trusted himself." Smith was a missionary, one of the outstanding Americans in China during the last half of the nineteenth century, heart and soul devoted to the uplift and improvement of the Chinese, one of the ablest foreign friends the Chinese ever had, and the man who induced Theodore Roosevelt to give back to China the unpaid installments of the Boxer indemnity fund. But Smith's devotion as a friend of the Chinese did not unfit him as a critic, nor make him indisposed to acknowledge the inescapably evident traits universal among the people he desired to serve. He recognized, as only a very few philanthropic workers in China today recognize, that the best service to China would come out of an honest acceptance of the differences inherent in Chinese as compared with some other races.

But going back to the subject of Chinese cruelty, overwhelmingly evident every day everywhere in the country, a few samples of regular practices are illustrative. For instance, a man who falls overboard from a boat not manned by members of his family or close associates need not expect to be picked up. Falling overboard, it may be mentioned, is not an infrequent occurrence among Chinese, who are naturally careless. Almost any veteran foreigner who has traveled up and down the rivers of China will be able to recount one or more cases where he has personally observed a man drown without efforts to save him by other Chinese a few feet away on shore or in a boat.

An American Consul related to me a personally witnessed occurrence at a place up the Yangtze where he was stationed, one that strikes a Westerner as incredible, but which would not impress a native Chinese as anything remarkable. It happened that a sampan loaded down with a cargo of live pigs, and crowded also with Chinese, was caught in a treacherous current and overturned a little distance from the shore. The Chinese and pigs aboard were spilled out into the water. A number of other Chinese along the shore, seeing the upset, immediately put out to the scene in their own boats, and began greedily picking up the live pigs swimming about. The drowning and pleading humans who wailed to be taken aboard were knocked on the head as fast as they swam to the arriving boats, and were all washed downstream and drowned. The Chinese minute men of the sampans returned in high glee with their unexpected catch of fresh pork, and life went on as usual. Once I was present at a Chinese dinner, the main guests at which were several ranking officers in one of the Chinese "loyal" armies. These officers were vastly above the common run. As I recall, two or more of them had been educated in Japan, up till recently the main training ground for educated Chinese officers. Several of the Chinese present spoke English, and as my knowledge of Mandarin was feeble, they put in an explanation of the conversation now and then for me in English. It appeared that in a recent campaign a group of higher officers had been captured, and a colloquy followed to decide how they should die. The means finally Chosen was that each of the captured officers should be forced to eat a handful of loose needles. After this relish, they were lined up for their captors to watch the effects of this diet. They died in about two hours.

I heard not long before I left China this year of a procedure in meaningless cruelty even more jarring to Western sensibilities. This was related by some missionaries who had come down from a very remote and wild mountainous country inland in South China. A village of about sixty inhabitants was raided by a bandit chief, who according to custom summoned the elders and demanded what valuables and money the village possessed. The villagers were evasive, the bandit leader concluded, and in return he hit upon the most unusual punishment I heard of anywhere in China. He ordered his men to cut off the feet of every man, woman and child in the village. This was done, and the bandit gang went on its way. Because of increasing dangers the missionaries evacuated the territory, and I was never able to learn the subsequent history of the village of feetless families.

It would have been interesting to know what number survived, whether they became in their helplessness a prey for neighboring villages, or have managed to carry on, stumping about today on their little plots among those remote and wild mountains of inland China.

Chinese ferocity is at least democratic in the fullest sense, with women admitted to all privileges. An acquaintance of mine was stationed in a town where on one occasion the army was urgently in need of burden bearers, the soldiers never carrying their own packs if there are any helpless persons in sight who can be bayoneted into the job. The supply of men was insufficient, so the soldiers went through the streets seizing women and clubbing them into submission. Then with the caravan of women pack-bearers the army was off to new territory. This procedure was that of a "friendly" army among its own people. Of course in the case of an "enemy" army such acts, only worse, are expected, though sometimes, infrequently, a surprising leniency is shown.

The fate of a Chinese coolie, male or female, who is hundreds of miles away and abandoned penniless is hard indeed. The very poor cannot hitch hike their way back home, as is done in America. A moneyless stranger is unwelcome anywhere in China, and in the remote areas may expect to be stoned away or driven oft by the dogs as he approaches one village after another to beg. There are no scraps to be picked up, because nobody throws away anything conceivably edible. There are no handouts for tramps, no acknowledgments of hard luck stories, no brothers sparing a dime. You will hear more than one account, in China, from foreigners who tell of flood or famine survivors being driven away or killed out-right when wandering into strange territory. Villagers fear newcomers so obviously indigent may in their desperation be more than ordinarily disposed to steal anything they could lay hands on, and think that prudence recommends nipping the possibility in the bud. The attitude of Chinese officials in the matter of merciless cruelty is somewhat of a variant of the golden rule, and might be paraphrased as doing as they would expect to be done by in the same circumstances. There are occasionally heard ignorant contentions that in the good old palmy days, before the modern turmoil ascribed to Western contacts set in among the

Chinese, the officials of the country were a highly learned and just lot. This supposition is rather quickly banished by a little effort in poking through the mass of material gathered a century or a century and a half ago - the volumes of company records by the early British and American traders in the country, the chronicles of the pioneer missionaries, the journals of observant and literarily disposed sea captains and travelers, and by the abundant surviving court minutes of the Chinese themselves. All this material, and there are tons of it, leaves the impression that for as long back as we have reliable records of them, the Chinese have shown traits no different in the matter of cruelty and official incompetence from what they exhibit at the present time.

One of the foremost travelers to China during the first part of the nineteenth century was the famous Abbe Huc, sent out by Catholic Church authorities to survey and report upon the fertility of China as soil suitable for Christian enterprise. Huc must be ranked as one of the great travelers of all time. Next to Marco Polo he may be accounted the most thoroughly determined of all who have tackled China. For thirteen years, equipped with special letters from the Emperor of China, which in those days commanded obedience, he rambled in and out of mountain fastnesses, swamps, across deserts and into remote plains and cities. Stopping to learn new languages or dialects as he went, he penetrated innumerable places where no white man had ever been known, and even managed to stay two years or so in the sacred city of Lhassa, in Tibet. A competent scholar, nowhere prone to sensationalizing, but on the contrary conservative and careful, his records make informing reading.

Huc describes one incident that is particularly revealing. Hearing an unusual chorus of noises proceeding from a caravan of carts in a Chinese city street one day, he walked forward to investigate, and noticed that the carts were piled deep with live human beings. Looking closer, he observed that the hands of each were nailed fast to the cart, with nails through the palms. Inquiring of the official in charge of the guards the occasion for this, the official told him that there had been some thieving by persons in a certain village, and that he had gone out to bring in the entire lot of villagers, upon the presumption that among them the actual culprits would be found. Huc exclaimed over the nailed hands of the prisoners, and thereupon the guard leader explained that the matter was purely an accident, that the arresting constable had forgotten his supply of handcuffs, and nailing the prisoners' hands to the wood was the handiest expedient under the circumstances. Huc asked if he took into account the innocent ones among them. Of course, was the reply, but they need not fear-they would be released as soon as their innocence was established! The significant item in this incident is that Huc, a foreigner, appears to have been the only astonished person in the crowd. Nails through the hands, in those palmy days of celestial serenity, did not impress the Chinese as anything unnatural in the course of the law.

The old observation that insight into character is provided by what people appear to take for granted is something usefully kept in mind in surveying the Chinese.

Elsewhere, among his varied experiences, Huc had occasion to note the evils of gambling, and the intensities of passion aroused in Chinese by games of betting. In one place at the time he visited it, a city up near the Great Wall, he says, where the winters are very cold an unusually frenzied epidemic of gambling gripped the populace. Desperate players, having a run of ill luck, would begin to wager one personal possession after another, finally getting down to the clothes they wore. If his fortune was still bad, the winners would promptly strip these from the loser, then the bouncers would drag the unlucky wretch to the door and heave him out into the snow. The winning players, watching from the door for a moment the fellow's agonized running about to seek warmth before he succumbed to the deadly cold and curled up in the snow to freeze, would then go on with the game. Huc relates also that the gambling halls there at that time commonly kept on the tables a hatchet, a block, and a bowl of hot oil. This was for the particularly passionate fans who would in desperation wager a finger. The winner, according to the rules, had the privilege of cutting the finger off himself, evidently a powerful attraction against which money would be wagered. The hot oil was to cauterize the spot where the finger had been.

The tortures to which convicted persons were until fairly recently sentenced by law in China are familiar to most foreign readers. The sentences of death by pieces was very common. This provided for whittling down the culprit, so to speak, by the removal of small portions while still avoiding wounds to any vital organ that would immediately cause death. Another device was a sort of death by lot. A number of tagged knives, each marked with some portion of the victim's anatomy, would be placed in a basket. A blindfold draw would produce a certain knife, and the label indicated where it was to be used. The drawing was continued until the doomed man died of successive wounds or had the good luck to draw a knife marked for some fatal spot early in the business. Of course a little bribery by relatives would generally fix things so that the executioner managed to draw a fatal tag with reasonable promptness.

These punishments no longer appear among the legal crime preventives on Chinese statutes. Officials, however, continue out-side the large foreignized centers to punish pretty much as they please. As always, they themselves are the law - or lack of it - and their present-day abominations are widespread and fiendish to a degree that persons who have not lived in isolated parts of China can scarcely believe. If any consistency or pseudo-justice were apparent in their activities, there might be some excuse, because the recalcitrant and vicious elements in China require stern handling. The mollycoddling sentimental vogue of dealing with tough criminals, conspicuously a failure in the United States, would be even more ridiculous among people with the traditions and inherent character of the Chinese. But the outlandish cruelties of Chinese officials very often, in fact in some places most of the time, have no connection with presumed justice even according to Chinese standards, but represent instead the private machinations of the acting official.

At Futsing last year, for example, a town about forty miles from Foochow, where I was last stationed in China, the leading government official in the place exhausted all sources of further revenue by the usual intimidations, fake taxes and extortions. He then hit upon the expedient of seizing the better-off citizenry of the town, suspected of concealing assets, and without any pretense of a legal charge against them, hung them up by their thumbs until they were ransomed down by relatives and associates. Other supposedly well-to-do Chinese in the town purchased immunity daily by the payment of severe levies of cash. When I left China, in the spring of this year, the offending official seemed to have lost no caste by his resourcefulness in the eyes of higher-ups of the government, and was in fact functioning at a new headquarters not far from Amoy, still an official in good government graces.

Incidents of similar savagery could be multiplied, with citation of names and dates, almost ad infinitum. I had often heard of "rule of thumb" before I went to China, but I had supposed it to be a mere figure of speech. You hear, in China, all sorts of harrowing stories of tortures for one reason or another, the sort of things told to a friend by a friend. I have not detailed any of these, for the reason that I was never able personally to verify many of those that make such splendid bedtime stories at twelve-thirty A.M. around the lounges of the foreign clubs. I do not suggest that they are unfounded, or even improbable in view of the seemingly unlimited capacity of the Chinese mind for ingenious cruelty. But as these observations of mine are offered for information representative of prevailing conditions and not as morbid entertainment, I have avoided all rumors and testimony that were not provided by persons convincingly reliable as accurate observers. Names and dates are in many instances omitted because of friends or acquaintances who are still in China, and whose best interests would not be served by identifying them here.

I was never able to find anyone who had seen at first hand the punishment of tying a victim immovable and unclothed over a freshly sprouting bed of thorny cactus, or some such plant, which is said to grow very rapidly in South China, and with great force, so that the sharp spines with which it breaks through the sod pierce upward as it grows and gradually penetrate the helpless man's body in the course of a day or two. I was never able, either, to meet any one who had himself seen the artificially-produced "natural" human freaks of diminutive size and peculiar ashy white color, who are said to be bred occasionally by Chinese exhibitors. The method is described as beginning with a normal Chinese infant, who is placed while still very small in a vase or jar of such shape that his head can remain out while his body in time grows and fills the wider space below the neck of the vessel - a sort of human version of the how-did-the-cucumber-get-into-the bottle wonder.

These yarns, with a long array of rather similar accounts touching upon mysterious cults of Living Buddhas and what not, remain, as far as my own inquiries went, pure hearsay. But the practice of the familiar tortures of the bamboo, the body-compressing frame, and the kneeling upon chains for long periods, are so wholesale and widespread that they are taken for granted practically everywhere, along with variations for exceptional cases. And in fact, so far as officially administered punishments are concerned, an average Chinese jail is itself something formidable. Even Chinese acknowledge that after six months in one a man is not likely ever to be good for anything again.

The Chinese relish for torture found, of course, excellent means of household application in the custom of foot-binding. Through missionary efforts this has now very greatly decreased, but it continues widely in what might be called the backwoods of China. The older women you see stumping about the streets demonstrate what foot-binding meant, two decades ago and before, to the female population of China. Like most fashions, foot-binding was originated to provide the leisure class women with a means of distinguishing them from the women less fortunate who were obliged to do manual work. This could best be accomplished by rendering them incapable of work. Incapable they indeed were. The tight bandages were put on in infancy and kept very tightly compressed until the girl was grown. They could not be eased day or night during twelve years or so of the growing period, and as the feet tended to enlarge in the natural processes of growth, the unremitting agony was extreme. Chinese tell you of the ceaseless wails and moans of the little girls whose feet were being kept baby size while their bodies grew. The final result, as you still see it today along Chinese streets, was that the woman walked only on the toe part of her foot, the shriveled heel and instep being compressed together to form a sort of extension, stiff and hideous, of the leg. The feet bound in this fashon through childhood and youth do not regain either the appearance or function of normal anatomy after the bandages are removed. The women peg about on such feet as if they walked on stilts. Doubtless this peculiar walk, confined, of course, to the women with distorted feet, accounts for the error of American moving picture and stage producers, who traditionally represent all Chinese, from high mandarins to lowly peasants and boatmen, appearing and reappearing with a short-stepping, mincing little trot. A Chinese man or woman whose feet have never been bound walks as naturally as human beings anywhere in the world.

Foot-binding has been frequently compared to the temporarily extinct practice in America and Europe of waist-binding. With all the idiocy behind the waist-binding fashion hygienically, however, and with all its absurdity as a conception of improved beauty, to compare it with Chinese foot-binding is to compare an obviously stupid and very uncomfortable custom with an equally stupid but fiendishly cruel and barbaric rite from which there was no future escape. With the small waist vogue, avenues of escape were open either through common sense independence on the part of the individual, or to some fortunately slender girls through the kindness of nature. In any event it was a device to be Chosen by the girl at an age of discretion, or as near it as she would ever be, and one always remedied on short order if too painful. The Chinese infant girl was without free will when bound, nor had she any relief afterwards, however great the distress. By sacrifices the poor could spare at least some of the daughters from tasks requiring a firm stride, and of course among the better-off it was practiced generally with no exceptions. Old Chinese plays and poems infer that the classic ideal was a foot that would fit a shoe the size of a spoon. The spoon in mind was the Chinese porcelain spoon, really a small ladle.

But coming back to the matter of contemporary cruelties in China, and the representative activities of Chinese officials, I think about the worst exhibition I ever had personal experience with was during a summer cholera epidemic at Foochow. This particular epidemic was unusually severe, and a walk through the Chinese parts of the city would bring you face to face with Chinese stricken in the street, falling down writhing beside their bamboo poles and baskets. They would lie there, of course, till they died, and even for a while afterward, unless some friend or member of their families happened along. The figures of the number of deaths at Foochow reported in the Shanghai papers were not large, but the steady tramp everywhere of the funeral marchers, and the frequency along the streets of houses where deaths had just occurred, and the swarms of grave-diggers at work on the mountainside, all offered proof of an epidemic of major proportions, with the reports vastly minimized. As usual in severe epidemics, the disease this time was particularly deadly, the victims dying in about two hours after seizure with the first symptoms - sudden and terrible cramps in the abdomen and weakness.

As the epidemic gathered headway in the sultry, viciously hot summer weather, alarm spread among the native population to the proportion, almost, of panic. The tall idols were taken from the temples for parades of supplication in the streets, while the tramp-like drum-beating priests, a sort of medicine men, were worked overtime hurrying from house to house to scare away the cholera devil and make suitable joss on payment of a few coppers. In tens of thousands of homes the protective vigil was not relaxed day or night, with all members called to keep the gongs and firecrackers going by way of warding off any cholera devil who had his eye on persons within. The roar of firecrackers, the gongs, and the wails of the mourners for those who had died swelled across the city of a million people like a continuous New Year's celebration - the pathetic terror of helpless creatures whose ancestral expedients of rice offerings, joss burning and gong-beating had failed them.

But there was alarm, too, though milder, among the two hundred or so foreigners living there. The more careful dietetic habits of the foreigner, who drinks no unboiled water in China, and eats no uncooked food if he is prudent, provide some protection against infection, but the Chinese cooks cannot always be trusted to carry out orders, and may now and then elude supervision on the theory that foreign joss is mostly foolishness anyhow, and what the foreigners don't see won't hurt them. In any event, usually a few foreigners die when a serious epidemic comes along.

At the first warning of the epidemic, the foreign doctors had sent off to Shanghai or somewhere for anti-cholera serum. Inoculated in three doses, this is a pretty reliable preventive. The serum was obtained from some philanthropy, free or nearly free. The foreign doctors announced that when it arrived they would inoculate the poorer Chinese applicants without charge. Foreigners were of course to be charged.

But here the story begins: The serum arrived, but the Chinese government officials in Foochow promptly seized it and held it. There was a stir at once among the foreigners, and the doctors tackled vigorously the job of having the serum released at once. They reported what everyone suspected - that the government officials wanted the serum ransomed. It was useless to point out the urgency, which the Chinese officials knew as well as anybody, the emergency of course presenting just the sort of opportunity they relied upon for a living. Day after day the doctors nagged them, and day after day the officials held their trump. While this was going on, I went away for the week-end to Kuliang. The foreigners there were alarmed and impatient for their share of serum from the supply. I reported the progress of negotiations. One of the younger missionaries present, one who had spent a few years in China, was almost dumbfounded at the fiendish greed of even Chinese officials in such an emergency, with their own fellow-countrymen dying in droves every day while measures of relief were at hand. Then one of the oldest missionaries in the area spoke up, a venerable man of about forty years' experience in China, the Reverend --- ---. "They'll do it every time," he said in substance. "You don't know Chinese officials. They have absolutely no heart where profit is concerned. Nothing moves them." So the Chinese continued to die in droves.

Finally Dr. E. C. Dymond, whose name I may use because he has happily left China now to work among the Boers and blacks of South Africa, sent me word that he had at last got some serum, not at prices permitting any free clinical inoculation of the poorer Chinese, but at a figure enabling foreigners and moderately well-off Chinese to be inoculated. It was his impression, when finally getting the serum, that the officials were finally going to release some as a face saving expedient to Chinese doctors at a low cost, so that in administering it their prices would make the foreign doctors look like gougers. I never learned whether this was done. This extortion scheme in the matter of the cholera serum stands out as about the most inhuman of the innumerable inhuman ones I met intimately from day to day among Chinese officials in China. During the days when they held the serum and dickered, countless lives were risked, and many deaths undoubtedly occurred in consequence.

Opium addicts

Yet these same officials, if you chanced to call upon them, would receive you with almost unfailing civility. They lied amiably. Only once did I ever see one lose his composure, and that was because, knowing he was an advanced opium addict, we countered his outrageous lying and attempted extortion by purposely prolonging our visit until he was almost out of his head with impatience to get back to his pipe. The rigors of etiquette are binding in China to a degree impossible to appreciate in America, and however he felt, he could not, without violating all kinds of ancestral traditions, excuse himself in our presence or intimate that we had stayed long enough. This was Magistrate Wang Jo-heng of the Minhow magistracy.

Dr. E. C. Dymond, whom I mentioned above, deserves a word of comment as a man who came to China as a missionary doctor, filled with ideas of service to the Chinese and mankind at large. His father was one of the eminent mission pioneers in China during the last century. But after two years in China, after a success in medical work that made him known all up and down the China coast, Dr. Dymond left last winter, convinced of the futility of mission work as it is conducted, convinced of the hopelessness of foreign aid to the natives in any permanent way and vehemently disgusted with the Chinese themselves. The day of his going, he remarked, was the happiest day of his life. For two years he had faced the sort of cooperation and reception of foreign good-will illustrated in the item of the cholera serum.

"How did your father carry on?" I once asked him.

"Religion and faith," he told me.

"And how successful was he?"

"He was looked upon as an eminent success. In later years he was at the head of a large system of mission churches, with a number of stations, working for the conversion of the natives. But how many converts, real converts, do you think he made in his life-time?"

"How many?"

"He said just before he died he never had one Chinese he was sure of - among all his thousands of nominal adherents, not one."

Viewing the uphill hardships of a service-devoted foreigner's career in isolated posts of inland China, with patience persisting in the face of realized defeat, such faith may be sublime. Or it may be a tangent of fanatical absurdity, deserving not applause but pity.

Bystanders like ourselves have no standards beyond individual definitions, each his own.

Medical practice in China provides interesting insight into certain features of Chinese character. Doctors there are substantially unanimous in declaring that a vast difference exists between the Chinese and the Western nerve mechanism, in a physiological sense, beyond the possible influences of a dissimilar social environment. Many diseases affect them differently. An epidemic of smallpox which is overwhelmingly fatal to any foreigners contracting it will not even put large numbers of Chinese in bed. Syphilis is naturally rampant among them, but seemingly less malignant than among Anglo-Saxons. Foreign doctors speak of the "eminent syphilization" of China.

A Chinese will endure without an anesthetic, showing no signs of acute distress, surgical operations that would require an anesthetic with any Occidental. This quality appears to arise from an actual dullness to pain, rather than from any mental habituation to self-control. In any case, the cutting and sawing that can be done on a Chinese without recourse to ether is astounding.

A neat problem in heredity and its bearing upon this point, as separate from factors of climate, food and general environment, is presented by the Hakkas, an aboriginal (or so-called aboriginal) racial group in Kwantung Province, north of Canton. The Hakkas look much like Chinese. Their food, dress, and habits are similar, and evidently have been so for a very long historical period. They are said by ethnologists to be survivors of the inhabitants of the country before the Chinese overran it, many centuries ago. The Hakkas behave very differently when it comes to pain. At the slightest distress they raise a terrible howl, and doctors working on them have a hard job.

Every foreigner meets experiences that reveal to his amazement, in spite of all he has heard, the incredible stoicism of a Chinese in physical distress that would be likely to unnerve a Westerner. Once, during the fighting around Shanghai, a bomb struck in the road ahead of the car in which I was riding, and within a few seconds, regardless of the fact that bombs were still falling all around from Japanese aircraft flying above, such a crowd of curious Chinese reached the spot ahead of the car that we could not get through. I jumped out to investigate, disturbed at leaving the car, an unusual target in that poor section of the city at that time, standing still in the road.

Three Chinese, all badly rolled in the mud and torn, were picking themselves up from near where the bomb had struck. One, a little boy perhaps ten years old, had a big nasty hole in his head, with blood and dirt all over him. The two others, one a slightly older boy and the other a man, were bloody from small cuts but appeared not seriously injured. Only the man showed any signs of being perturbed. The two boys acted as if getting leveled out by an air bomb was the most routine experience imaginable. None of them raised his voice, complained of any pain, or even showed any special animation when I loaded them in the car to take them to a hospital back in the Settlement and drove away with the Chinese chauffeur grumbling because they would spatter blood on the floor. He favored leaving them where they had fallen for that reason.

Incidentally, during the Chapei bombardment, I noticed a big poster, on a frame constructed for it, by the edge of Soochow Creek on the Chapei side, on which was written a plea not to commit suicide. Presumably a good many had jumped into the creek at that spot.

Looking on at the Chapei shambles brings interesting reflections upon Chinese temperament. The Chinese troops had dug themselves holes and trenches in the maze of narrow alleys and crooked streets, bordered by stone houses, at the eastern end of the area known as Chapei, the Bronx of Shanghai. This placed their troops along the border of that part of the

International Settlement inhabited by the Japanese. It was this alarming proximity of a large army of Chinese soldiers right under their kitchen windows, so to speak, that started the Japanese on their drive to rout them out. The job was harder than they had anticipated, and a general bombardment of all Chapei behind the Chinese troops was inaugurated. It was very interesting to see the Chinese from day to day, as the bombardment continued, living right on in houses next to the heaped bricks and smoking embers where houses had been struck by incendiary or high explosive shells. In places you would see a cluster of only a few houses left, where the night or the day before the neighboring houses had been leveled. Yet the Chinese remaining alive, those whose homes remained intact, would putter about as usual, cluttering up the sidewalk with their inevitable pots and poles and baskets, moving about at some task and never by any outward evidence getting anything done, like Chinese everywhere and always. Nearly every day the Japanese planes would fly over in trip after trip, raining down bombs that sent the tiles on the roofs spouting like geysers into the air, killing the inhabitants by scores and hundreds, intent on demolishing all concealments for military support behind the Chinese trenches and tearing up the supply roads. Yet, knowing nothing else to do, or in adherence to ideas that death is foreordained and its hour beyond human control, or from the sort of blind instinct that makes a horse stick to his stable when the barn begins to burn - whatever their motive or impulse, they clung on there, their number hourly lessened, the thousands of dead ungathered from the debris, the living puttering about with their pots and baskets, to all appearances oblivious that within the day many more would die.

They would at times run about in terror, however, at the actual appearance of a plane close overhead as it began its fatal circling preparatory to the usual swift dip when the bombs would be released. Once I saw a group of Chinese, perhaps a dozen, run into a stone house across the street, a house I had my eye on because I thought of running into it myself, having heard a Japanese plane low overhead. When the bricks and tiles had settled a few seconds later, after the bomb struck, I looked up and saw the roof and three walls of the house fallen in. None of the Chinese stirred from the heap of dust and mortar where the house had been. Evidently all were killed. By that time the plane was gone, and the Chinese were boiling out of the neighboring houses looking at the latest wreck of the many that were still fresh along the street. I heard no wailing and saw none of the frenzied gesticulating and general commotion usually seen at a Chinese market in peace time.

They did not act as if anything out of the way had happened. Doubtless within a few minutes they were once more puttering around with their pots and baskets. But I did not hang around to see.

In interesting contrast to this stolidity in the midst of woeful and inescapable slaughter, not far away swarms of Chinese were wailing at the big spiked iron gates barring them from the International Settlement. At each gate their wailing, yelling, shouting, begging and moaning made a furious din, each Chinese seemingly almost mad with frenzy to escape from the destruction and death in Chapei, though within sight in Chapei other Chinese were tranquilly going about their affairs between bombings. The police of the International Settlement opened the gate now and then to allow ambulances or persons with proper documents to pass through. At each opening the hundreds held back in check would stampede forward, whereupon the police would fall upon them with clubs and bamboo rods and they would be driven back again, wailing and falling over one another in their terror and frenzy. They never appeared to grasp the fact that they could not swarm through the gates. They pressed against the iron grille hour after hour, day after day, the pandemonium slackening only by night. The Settlement Police has among its members a considerable number of Chinese sub-officers. These were the main club and bamboo swingers, an assignment evidently to their taste. It is established policy, when Chinese must be clubbed into order, to have the clubbing done as largely as possible by other Chinese. Blackjack discipline is an everyday necessity in all Chinese cities in China. As habituated as the more brutish animals to respond only to the stick and the cudgel, lower class Chinese cannot in the present state of their degradation understand any other kind of appeal. Their lives are lived upon primitive fundamentals, far removed from abstract conceptions which in the West are often mistakenly termed fundamentals. Unless agitated by radicals, they do not feel resentment.

It is very common in Shanghai to see a bamboo-wielder standing by at the pay-off of factory employees at the end of the day. In many places Chinese employees must be paid daily, because they have not the resources to go a longer period without funds. The pay for unskilled women in the mills will range around eighty coppers for a ten-hour day, at recent exchange around seven or eight cents in American money. At the sight of the money these women appear unable to await their turn in line, and the scene is similar to that of a farmer entering a hog pasture with a basket of corn. The bambooer's job is to whack the impatient ones when they scramble forward out of turn and beat them into line again. By way of qualification, however, I should add that as often or more often a line-up of Chinese awaiting their pay will pass muster as wellbehaved, with decorous patience subduing the mad itch they have to get their hands on their money. In paying off line-ups of coolies myself, I never had one require so much as a reprimand. In these cases, though, the coolies were of a somewhat higher class, and better off economically, and scrupulously determined not to give offense in a manner they could suspect might endanger their employment.

Most foreigners in China learn the value of a stout walking stick. It is handy every hour of the day, and saves trouble by the excellent course of preventing it. At times a rival ricksha coolie will attempt to hold back the ricksha of another in which you have seated yourself as a passenger, or when getting out of an automobile or sampan a swarm of hoodlums will nearly knock you down snatching at your handbag. Nothing equals a few sweeps of a formidable-looking stick to clear the air. Many foreigners, especially in the more native areas in China, carry sticks which will unsheath a rapier blade by pulling the handle. With these, though, half the benefit is lost, because a Chinese is usually more intimidated by first outward appearances than anything else.

One of the uses of a stick is to keep beggars from clawing at your clothes. Vilely filthy, they swarm around you at an inopportune moment and if not kept off compete with one another in pulling at your clothes to gain attention or else assist another one in picking your pocket. Some are falling to pieces with leprosy, they ooze with sores, their odor is hideously offensive, their rags are slimy with the scum in which they live. The faithful stick keeps their dirt-caked, claw-nailed hands at a distance.

Speaking of leprosy, little or nothing is done over most of China to segregate lepers properly or care for them. They squat in droves along the paths to the temples on holidays to beg, and on other days each will take his Chosen spot in the shelter of some wall or overhanging roof along a public road and sit by his beggar's bowl. A feature of the disease is that the victim may remain alive after much of his body has been completely eaten away. Of all the abominable common sights in native Chinese cities these frequent leper beggars are the most repellent. Large portions of their bodies in a state of putrefaction, not infrequently with their eyes rotted out and merely a raw hole remaining where a nose once grew, with the outer parts of the lips and mouth fallen away, they lie and moan out incoherent droolings hour after hour, day after day, ever in the same spot. . The number estimated for the whole of China ranges between a half million as the very low estimate and a million and a half as a more liberal one. In any case, they are plentifully in evidence outside the foreign areas in China. Mission hospitals have been established in some places to treat incipient sufferers. With attention in the early stages a high percentage of cures is effected. But with the general chaos in the country, nothing can be done now to attack the problem in a substantial way. The Chinese themselves are upon the whole indifferent to the matter.

An acquaintance of mine had some curious results in a hospital mission he established for leper cases in Fukien Province. A common effect of leprosy is the deadening of the nerves in the victim's hands and feet. It happened that in this particular hospital the numerous rats around the place discovered that characteristic. Before the matter was remedied, some of the patients had their toes eaten off by the rats while asleep, never experiencing any sensation during the gnawing. My acquaintance told me that several patients recovered from their leprosy toeless.

The absence of what we regard as natural mother-feeling is one of the most arresting spectacles in China. Very commonly, in native cities and villages in China, you see instances of parents who appear completely indifferent at the death of a child who has died of natural causes. A familiar sight" is to see the small body, perhaps put into a makeshift thin wood box, or else merely wrapped with a turn of worn-out and unwanted straw matting, handed to a coolie with a spade with instructions to go out and find a vacant spot and bury it. The family, showing no concern, will not interrupt its routine to go along or display any unusual ceremony. Not infrequently, in the inland native cities, the body is merely tossed outside the wall somewhere for the dogs to find.

Conceptions of spiritual endowment and spiritual survival seem to vary in different parts of China. In the areas I investigated myself, from what I could gather of local beliefs it appeared that boys acquire a soul at the age of about sixteen. Hence death under that age does not call for the elaborate ceremony and often bankrupting feasts and fireworks that are required by older males. A deceased who was a father must be honored by the best the survivors can muster in extravagant display. No shame equals that of inability to bury a relative with ostentatious extravagance, and funerals, of which there is no end in Chinese streets, are impressively lavish considering the means of the people. It often happens that a family pawns everything and is ruined financially by zealously putting every copper into a funeral. The wailing of the mourners in sackcloth rends the air as they go along. On a hot day, however, the bearers of the mammoth painted wooden coffins will sit down to rest occasionally. Then the members of the cortege, all except the ones hidden within the draperies of the sedan chairs, may be seen falling at once into amiable animated chatter during the time-out interlude. Mourning recommences when the march is resumed.

Bishop John Hind of Foochow told me of an experience he had one morning while taking a walk along a path that led by a Chinese cemetery. Lying on a grave as he approached there was a Chinese woman, evidently a widow, moaning and weeping and rolling about by the grave giving way to intense spasms of emotion, with all indications of a heart torn by a grief nearly unendurable for some loved one who had departed. But as he drew close and was about to pass on, the woman suddenly leaped lightly to her feet, brushed away the dust and tears, and asked very cheerfully what time it was. The Bishop told her. At that she dusted herself further, picked up her things and started away, remarking that, as she had no clock, she had already wept some minutes more than the rites required of her for that day.

Once when I was walking in a rural area with a guest who was but recently arrived in the country, we met a long funeral procession coming toward us. By the time we came up to it, the procession was taking a momentary rest from the stiff climb up a long hill. The mourners were taking one of their occasional intermissions from wailing, and the musicians, who had been playing the usual plaintive melancholies of Chinese funeral music, were likewise taking a little time out to enjoy themselves. My guest had never heard any native. Chinese music, and was anxious to hear some of the lively tunes, the equivalent of American jazz, that I had mentioned as being rather good. Sure enough, when I handed the orchestra leader a little money he struck up several very lively pieces for us. The nearer mourners caught the frolicsome spirit of the light-footed notes and gathered around to laugh and joke in great glee. After a little we started on, the musicians took their places in line again and resumed their doleful pipings, the coolies carrying the coffin reshouldered their poles, the mourners fell into line and recommenced their heart-rending grief.

Chinese remind one somewhat of Negroes in their thorough enjoyment of a funeral. They have a passion for its possibilities of ceremony, emotional exhibitionism and gaudy trappings. They lack the Negro's instinctive sincerity in grief and his genuineness of religious fervor.

Notes on outstanding characteristics of the Chinese, however avowedly brief, would be badly lacking without something said about their dirtiness. Veteran connoisseurs of dirt, persons who have lived long periods of their lives both in India and China, declare that the Indians have a slight edge on the Chinese in the world's championship for insanitation and general filthiness, but allow that the Chinese are a very close runner-up in the matter. I myself have had only brief tourist glimpses of the natives of India, and therefore am unprepared to approach the controversy with well-founded comparisons. However, as in other characteristics of the Chinese, it is worth while to make clear the exact respects in which they are dirty, and introduce the inevitable modifications in the interests of accuracy.

Personal dirtiness in China commonly accompanies personal outward tidiness in the same individual. The Chinese are to be commended for their efforts to keep their clothes clean and well patched. Even among the very poor, a coolie's shirt will in a surprising number of instances be recently laundered. And not often will there be seen dangling rags or open rents in the clothing of a wage-earner. The garments are commonly patched until the original material can scarcely be identified. As new rents appear they will be sewed up or patched over, and so the longevity of the garment is protracted indefinitely. This commendation, be it noted, applies to wage-earners and those who, even if desperately poor, possess resources of some sort. It applies very decidedly to the peasant class, for example, among whom neatness of apparel, considering the little they have to go upon, is indeed remarkable. Of course, everywhere there are swarms of completely destitute Chinese, persons who have no homes or regular headquarters of any sort, mere drifting animations of misery. The clothes of these are both ragged and dirty. Such sewing as they have seen has been a makeshift with no purpose beyond taking up the bigger holes to keep the wind out in winter and to meet minimum requirements of propriety in summer.

Among all classes, except the relatively well-to-do, the clothing becomes vilely dirty in winter for the simple reason that people have no clothing in which to change to while what they have on is being washed. The houses of the poor are never heated, and bales of wrappings must be worn indoors as well as out to keep from freezing in the northern parts of China. It is a common way of indicating the temperature to speak of the weather being so cold it was a "six-coat day" or a "five-coat" day. Sufficient bed covering is likewise uncommon among the poor, and day garments must be worn by many Chinese at night to keep warm. Altogether, in respect to the cleanliness or dirtiness of their clothing and the tidiness of it, the Chinese, in the great majority, are entitled to the tribute that they do the best they can do, and considering the manifold degradation of their lives, they do remarkably well. Off the subject of clothing they do not show up so favorably. The inside of an average Chinese house would make a hog feel fastidious. Of course the pigs, chickens, goats and whatever other domestic animals the family has have free range inside, in the daytime as a matter of the family's indifference and at night as a protection against theft of the animals. This arrangement is much on the order of what may be seen in many parts of Europe, particularly the Latin countries. But in China there is vastly more apathy to the natural accumulation of dirt. The floor in a Chinese house is usually composed of hard-packed clay. Holes form in this, and in wet weather puddles of water, so that within the house there are mudholes to catch the stray filth brushed about. The houses are commonly constructed with a small walled court in the back, not infrequently a mere unroofed space between rooms at one end and quarters at the rear. This unroofed space is, with the usual preference of the Chinese for the poetic, called the "well of heaven," the tienjan. The well of heaven will present a disorder of mudholes with green stagnant water in them, or else an array of carelessly laid flat stones with oozing mud between, together with the dirt remaining from whatever domestic animals have been quartered there. If the family is well off enough to have garbage, a pile of this may be looked for heaped up against on wall, or else outside the house, where the dogs and chickens have dug through each successive layer to extract anything which in the extremities of starvation might be edible. This mass of dirt and filth has accumulated usually since the last time a house on that site was burned down, which commonly means a period of years. The odor is stifling. The shambling, hideously mangy hogs scare up swarms of flies as they root about inside and outside the house and pause to scratch their backs against the door post.

Sewage in Chinese dwellings is saved for motives of economy. It is disposed of for a small consideration to the farmers direct, or else to dealers who retail to the farmers. The established method in homes is to use a great stone jar as a collector. This is commonly emptied every day, when the farmer or other person holding the "concession" calls with a wheelbarrow or a cart, in North China, or with two pails slung on a bamboo pole, in South China. At the abominable native inns of the inland country, however, away from the foreignized cities, immense earthenware cauldrons, not infrequently within the same quarters as the accommodated traveler, are used as collectors, and appear to be emptied only at long intervals. No deodorants appear to be known among the Chinese, or at least none is used by them.

The long caravans of sewage collectors winding over the paths from the cities into the rural areas in the early part of the day are one of the remembered characteristics of China. In a photograph they look picturesque. On many paths simultaneously the caravans of pole carriers, each pole bearing two pails, trudge across the plains and hills as far as one can see, thousands of humans toiling away from the crowded jumble of sway-backed gilded roofs, gray-tiled bamboo and adobe shacks and a towering pagoda or two, into the more open country of tiny farms and clustered family villages, renewing the fertility of the soil as they have renewed it from time immemorial. In South China most of the carriers in the long caravans are women, lean and patient and brisk of stride, the older ones grunting in rhythm to the creaky dipping of the limber poles at each step under the heavy load. They are dressed almost uniformly in black straight cotton trousers falling to about halfway between the ankle and the knee, bareheaded unless the sun is exceptionally hot, wearing much-washed white or faded blue blouses, barefooted. Some of the young girls are really good-looking, and bear themselves with an air of pride in spite of their job. They are plump-faced and bright-eyed; and now and then you see one wearing the red hair-ribbon arrangement that shows she is a bride.

Before long of course these will be wizened and snaggle-toothed like the majority, for they age swiftly.

Some of those you see will have made a purchase or two at a market before leaving the city. A fish, or a bundle of some sort of vegetables not produced on the pole-carrier's farm, will be hung over the side of the bucket, not separated from the splashing sewage, of course. It is common practice, where carts and wheelbarrows are used, for the farmers to bring a load of vegetables into market in the same conveyance used the day before to carry out a load of sewage. Nor would they dream of wrapping up the vegetables to prevent contact with the conveyance.

Undoubtedly the daily movement of these caravans of sewage removers assists the rapid spread of disease in times of epidemics. Chinese are hopelessly careless, and as they fill their pails up to the brim, and provide no covering for them, the cobblestones of the streets over which the caravans pass daily are kept slimy with sewage, from which the playing children, the wandering dogs, and the scavenger hogs are promptly able to track contamination into the homes.

As an esthetic feature, Chinese agricultural methods detract seriously from rustic scenes that in cases appear very well in photographs. The foulsmelling sewage is mixed with water on the farms and spread daily over the furrows of the growing crops, the whole family on each little plot wading about all day bare-legged to keep it stirred into the soil. In the summer, when the sun bakes down fiercely hot over thousands of acres tended in this fashion, as far as one can see across a valley, many foreigners are unable to venture into the rural areas without illness. The air about is unbelievably suffocating.

In native Chinese cities, one of the first sights along the streets that really jars the newly arrived foreigner is the manner employed by the mothers of the poorer sections to clean the small children. When the busy mother observes an infant in need of bathing, she simply calls one of the wandering dogs and removes the child's clothes. It should not be understood that this is standard practice, but in going about Chinese streets a foreigner will see it often enough to conclude that it is a fairly frequent recourse among many mothers. Other customs, infinitely more revolting and vicious, are likewise seen with disturbing frequency along Chinese streets.

Bathing cannot be said to be popular among the Chinese. The majority do not, however, go altogether without bathing throughout their lives, as some other Orientals do. I remember that in Foochow it was a daily occurrence in summer, about sunset on hot days, to see the mothers even in the poorer areas washing the smaller children. Like many household tasks, this was usually performed out in the street, the howling brats being stood in a pan of water while their mothers scrubbed away with a cloth. They could not afford soap, of course, but most of the dirt could be removed without it. The men of the more prosperous classes patronized a few times a year one of the public baths, costing too much for the poorer people, even if they desired to go. Home bathing is not done at all in winter, and is undertaken by very few adults even in summer. They appear to wash their faces daily though, the majority. Either from lack of soap or from personal indifference, very few succeed in keeping their hands clean, or even in ever getting them wholly clean at any time. Making untrained household servants understand that they are to appear always with their hands free of grime is one of the hardest jobs a foreign householder encounters in China.

From missionaries who have lived intimately among them I learn that Chinese women commonly live their entire lives, from infancy on, without so much as a single bath.

As a comparison in bodily cleanliness, the Chinese rank perhaps somewhere below the standards of the poorer class of Negroes of the South in the United States. In the matter of household cleanliness, they are infinitely below them, and perhaps the lowest of any large body of people in the world, including the Hindus. In the matter of clean clothes, the Chinese rank well above the southern Negroes, and I should personally estimate that they rank ahead of average Americans of any color if the comparison is confined to corresponding economic classes. Certainly a comprehensive inclusion of our slum population in the cities, the poor white trash of the South, and certain large immigrant groups of our citizenship, makes serious subtractions from what we regard as inherent American cleanliness. In the matter of clean and tidy clothes the Chinese make a much more favorable showing, among classes of relative poverty, than, say, our Indian- Mexican population of the Southwest. This does not mean that the prevailing scene in China is of a clean-clothed population, because the dirty-clothed ones are plentiful. It merely emphasizes that upon the whole they make a pretty good showing in the matter, and a showing inconsistently more favorable than the dirtiness of their existence in some other respects would lead one to expect.

As described, it is in home filthiness and street filthiness that the Chinese fall down so badly. The home of even a well-off and relatively cultured Chinese in a native city of China impresses a foreigner as little better than a pigpen. The homes of the coolie class impress him as much worse. And their streets are as bad as a cattle run at the stockyards. It is little wonder that the infant mortality in China, as computed by foreign medical workers, exceeds fifty per cent for children under five years of age alone.

The material in this chapter has been assembled with the idea of presenting the features of foremost impressiveness. In that sense most experienced foreigners, I believe, would agree that the selection is fairly representative, regarding the people as a whole - the three hundred and ninety-five out of the four hundred million. Of course, in the foreignized places better impressions are possible. But the foreignized part of Chinapeople and territory-is slight against the whole.

Experiences and sights of a happier order naturally are abundant, for the Chinese socially are amiable and polite, with a sense of grace vastly exceeding our own. The delight of a well-bred Chinese in entertaining you, and his skill in enabling you to enjoy his hospitality, are unforgettable. But in this connection I think it is logical to remark that these latter traits do not banish or refute the facts of things that are disagreeable.


IF there were any faint remoteness of truth in the tedious idiocy that hardship brings out men's virtues, we should see in China today a nation of saints. Ascetics in all ages have sought purity in starvation, and perhaps some have attained it. Yet the belief that continued want cultivates the homely merits of fine character, as suggested by many solacing columnists and preachers in America during the depression, may as well be dropped at the outset in respect to the Chinese, for in all their complex traits and traditions they absolutely refute it. World champion starvationists by sad necessity, their claim to fame in inherent talents for devilment is hardly open to question. With this talent, with their endless out-raging of one another as they outrage foreigners, the Chinese social structure has been maintained in spite of it. We may profitably examine, therefore, some of the characteristics that have enabled the Chinese to do as well as they have, and with these the characteristics that have prevented them from doing any better. Some of their traits we may reasonably ascribe to long-continued privation. Others are more obscure, and suggest that they proceed from innate racial tendencies.

Geography, climate and diet and any number of other things have been held to blame, separately and conjointly, for the Chinese being as they are, all without very satisfactory conclusions. Accounting for their cantankerousness defies even the Darwinian hypothesis. When it began nobody knows, because nobody knows when the Chinese began. When it will disappear, nobody knows likewise, except to the extent of being convinced it will not disappear soon, for the reason that the Chinese have a talent for survival exceeding anything else in human form. Our earliest records of contacts with the Chinese establish that they have not changed perceptibly in characteristics since such records began. Their own records, throwing light on their characteristics back to the remote obscurities of forty centuries ago, force the melancholy conclusion that they were no different then. They have bent in accommodation to certain material necessities intermittently, but under like circumstances their indigenous and seemingly ineradicable traits reassert themselves in a manner to distinguish them from the rest of mankind, and to keep the Chinese the Chinese.

If these obstinate traits were preponderantly good, judged by what has been evolved as suitable for the dealings of men with men and nations with nations, there would be comfort for the rest of the world in observing their inextinguishable persistence. But they are not. On the contrary, their outstanding characteristics neither enable other peoples to deal satisfactorily with them, nor enable the Chinese to deal satisfactorily with themselves. They have steadfastly resisted the introduction of other standards developed elsewhere and which, though far from ideal in practice, are of proven superiority to their own in enabling the average of mankind to derive the most from his environment in competition with his fellows. The intractability of the Chinese in this respect must be viewed simply as one of the phenomena of biology or zoology, as inexpressive of its peculiar mystery as why a dog remains a dog in character and a cat a cat, or why an eagle prefers live meat and a buzzard dead meat. The Chinese are themselves, and that is all. We do not attempt to judge them here by our standards. The aim is to set down as clearly as possible what they are, and this naturally gives emphasis to the particulars in which they differ from ourselves in representative experience. And since we have to deal with them, and should therefore be able to anticipate and accept variations from our own standards, such an effort may be believed to have practical value.

Psychologists of the Thorndike school have contended that in comparisons of masses, human beings are fundamentally not very unlike, irrespective of racial inheritance; and by engendering this notion they have probably occasioned a good deal of mischief in the world in recent years. The contention may be true as far as laboratory mental and physical tests go, but such tests cannot go far enough. A Chinese may react similarly in kicking his foot when whacked on the knee-cap or when given a pile of blocks to separate into the blues and the whites. But that is not the end of the story. There are fields, human character being one of them, in which the scope of simple perception exceeds the chartings of a so-called science. There are differences or character as apparent to our sense as the difference between water and ice, which likewise may be identical in a variety of laboratory tests, but which are instantly unlike to simple observation. It is not within my purpose to hint a contradiction of advanced scientific theories. It is merely submitted that the one just mentioned, similarity of character in the Chinese and ourselves, is one very difficult for foreigners of experience in China to accept.

The psychological interpreters are inclined to tag the various mental manifestations with lengthy names, some of them in Latin. It may be noted here that foreign business men in China, in remarking informally upon the more familiar mental characteristics of the natives, do not generally use Latin.

An interesting fact is that the Chinese are most puzzling to foreigners who have lived longest among them, and whose abundance of intimate experience might be best calculated to banish bewilderment. Life in China appeals to many Americans and Europeans resident there because of this ever-intriguing but never-solved daily cross word puzzle in the scene about. Each day, in each successive experience, a foreigner senses progress toward a personal solution, by personal solution being meant a harmonizing of Chinese characteristics into some order of consistency. But no foreigner on record has ever formed a really settled estimate of the Chinese in his own mind. It is unlikely that any ever will. If he does, he will in doing so have ceased to be a foreigner, and have become a Chinese himself, because he will necessarily have arrived at the point of Sino-saturation destroying his original identity, and become alien to his own race. For as long as a man is an American, an Englishman or a Frenchman, or what not, by definition and virtue of that fact, he will find the Chinese strange. The Chinese dogs will warn him before he arrives at the de-natured stage. After a foreigner has been in China for some years, if he begins to become Chinafied through and through, the wandering mangy dogs around the streets will cease to growl at him. He no longer smells like a foreigner, but passes as a native. This is regarded as the danger signal, when it is time to go home.

But further on the subject of understanding the Chinese, it is clear that to do so we should be obliged to possess Chinese mental machinery. We should be obliged to have excluded from our minds all instinctive judgments as to what we should do under circumstances where the Chinese do very differently. We cannot understand them in the sense of satisfactorily explaining them, because our whole brain system is too integumented to traditions, physical energies, nerve responses and perhaps other and unnamable forces of our racial destiny, too unlike their own. We cannot grasp a system of values so in conflict with ours as the Chinese, however determined the effort at detachment.

The case is not the same as that, say, with the French. We are not like the French. But in a measure - and with good opportunities for observation almost completely - we can understand them. We may not agree with them. But their objectives, as we summon to our minds their actuating circumstances, are rational to us. We may compute the conditions that might cause us to act similarly. In somewhat the same manner we can understand most Europeans, though without necessarily agreeing with them, or admiring the way they are influenced to take certain courses we think we should not take if similarly situated. Intelligent Europeans can likewise find us understandable, even if they find us odd, just as, if we give ourselves a moment's detachment, we can see these oddities in ourselves, all according to principles both sides accept as reasonable, and readily admit. This proposition, with its comparisons, is worth detailing here, because it is important to know what is meant by "understanding" the Chinese. For the reasons mentioned, no normal foreigner can expect to understand the Chinese in the sense of sharing a rational acceptance of their behavior."

Leaving the academic delicacies of the matter to relieve unemployed professors, there is a genuinely useful job for the reporter who can make clear to Americans at home what the Chinese do, and under what circumstances they do it. Persons living in China know already, at least those capable of knowing anything anywhere. That is a kind of knowledge that comes rapidly, for self-protection, like familiarity with the money in a country visited for the first time. The need is to make the native Chinese real and vivid to people at home in America, and by this means banish some of the twaddle that has impeded efforts of the well-informed to effect an intelligent policy for us in the Far East.

In the preceding chapter, a review was made of impressions common among foreigners in China. Right here a little historical retrospect is useful because it shows how deep-rooted are some of the peculiarities of the Chinese. With the evidence that they have persisted through thirty or forty centuries, through many changes of material conditions and external influences, we may conclude that they will survive a little longer. The invasion of Western ideas in China now is perhaps no more abrupt than sudden onslaughts of other foreign influences upon the Chinese in the past, and which the Chinese have weathered and emerged from inwardly little changed. The conquering dynasty of Jenghis Khan outwardly tore China topsy-turvy with new conceptions in the Thirteenth Century, but the Chinese character remained unaltered. When the last of the great khans passed on, the unvaried pulse of China's millions fertilized mentalities as obdurately Chinese as they had been a thousand years before and two thousand years before that.

And when the robust Manchus from what is now Manchukuo swept down in the Seventeenth Century to harness a decrepit empire for a more regal earthly journey to their heavenly reward, and introduced immense changes to profit by the mistakes of unsuccessful preceding conquerors to un-Chinafy the Chinese, and symbolized these changes by the compulsory pigtail, only outward accommodations met their efforts. Then when the last Manchu was dethroned in 1911 the Chinese were as they were when the first Manchu had set himself upon the dragon-favored seat in 1644. Their pigtails - outward acquiescence - hung black and straight for a few years more, but their inner mechanism, that intricately Chinese involvement of tradition, instinct, soul, conscience, or whatever it is - was as cantankerously full of Kinks as it has always been, and probably always will be.

And religious priests from within and without changed the Chinese no more than the cavalry of Jenghis Khan or the swarthy Manchu bowmen. Confucius, a Chinese, who knew his people, and was overcome with sadness thereby, labored in vain a lifetime to change them. After death he received innumerable tablets for his efforts, just as the pioneer Manchu conquerors might have looked out from their spirit world upon millions of dangling pigtails in reminder of futile aspirations. Both failed.

The priests of Buddhism and Mohammedanism and Judaism and Christianity made their inroads, and the unastute among them were elated by outward symbols of conversion. But there remained something inwardly deep and unassailable in the Chinese character that remained its timeresisting self, whether the seemingly acquiescing convert knelt before a sixarmed Hindu divinity or a halo-ringed virgin symbolic of a protecting Trinity, and whether the indoctrination of hope turned the eyes of the accommodating toward the crescent-topped Mecca or the cross-blazoned Jerusalem. Today in China, a Chinese is a Chinese first and last, and no significant differences are evident among those whose "religious" identities are widely divergent. And in the matter of classes, it seems equally true that no significant differences appear, ethically, between those of favored cultural advantages and those whose degradation is extreme, or between those of ample means and those of the bitterest poverty. In dealing with them, something indigenously Chinese and uniformly sheathed in the varying outward character of them all comes to light, something in some respects worthy, in other respects unfortunate for themselves and for the rest of the world committed to contacts with them.

And it is a good inference that John Dewey, Bertrand Russell, Henry Ford and Josef Stalin will separately and collectively make no more dent in this inner adamantine core of Chineseness in a fifth the world's population than prophets of the past. In deviousness of thought, evasiveness, obstinacy and prevarication, the Chinese will likely be themselves when the last coolie wears a Hart Schaffner & Marx suit and dodges unwelcome reality on balloon tires.

The Chinese are impressively accommodating. It is both rite and instinct with them to agree with whatever comes along, profusely with words, sometimes superficially with action. Then when the propagandist is out of sight, the amiable Chinese goes his way as before.

Agitating ideas have died in China as naturally as the once fine canals there have largely filled up, and from the same cause - indifference. Even now, when able, they are fond of buying modern tractors and other construction machinery, thus agreeing with the wisdom of fluent salesmen. But after buying them, they resume their torpid scratching with hoe and shovel while the tractors rust unused nearby. Some of the Western ideas have found a ready and eager market. Phonographs, lipstick, foreign shoes, perfumes, automobiles, moving pictures, flashlights and thermos bottles attract those who can afford them to shops that in imitation of the West have plate glass windows and electric lights. Of course, these things are visible in the large cities, particularly the port cities, but they are but little in evidence in the country as a whole, for the reason that transportation inland is next to impossible over most of the country, and also because the majority of the Chinese are too poor to be prospective purchasers. But the point is that these articles, even if they become much more general than they are now, as is probable, represent but superficial accommodations to foreign thought. They imply no changes of inner character on the part of the Chinese. They may induce changes in the civil, economic and cultural order in China, but the conviction on the scene is that they will do little or nothing any time soon to effect alteration in the characteristics of Chinese mentality in respect to its widest differences from our own. This is a reasonable, deliberated inference from the fact that Chinese character has in the past maintained itself intact through strenuous upheavals of the social and political system. Reenforcement of this belief is found also in the observation that Chinese who have been exposed to foreign influences retain inwardly their seemingly inherited traits in full measure, though making deceptive outward accommodations to the influences of environment. If this is true of those who have lived and been educated abroad, the possibilities of Westernism changing those who merely buy Western lipstick, phonographs and automobiles, and remain in China, are clearly limited. . But pushing on into this inquiry intended to reveal what the Chinese are today, it is immediately pertinent to search their background a little, to indicate which traits have been in evidence a long time, and may be thus inferred to be pretty well rooted, and likely to last through the lifetime of any of us concerned with them now.

If a jury of the most experienced Americans or Englishmen in China today were asked to name the most prominent characteristic in the Chinese mentality as opposed to our own, I think most if not all of them would. unhesitatingly answer, "lying."

In the West we scarcely know anything about lying. We are rank amateurs. Of course, the majority of Americans will lie occasionally under the stress of social niceties and a few will not be dependable for the truth at any time. Still, such a record comes nowhere near scratching the real possibilities in the matter. We have a host of recalcitrant die-hards who are every day and everywhere telling the truth. And our recognized scholars have a strong pride of accuracy. The great majority lean to a conservatism of certainty in announcements, distinguishing between opinion and fact. And even in such suspect classes as politicians and advertising men, lying is usually meditated to preserve if possible for the spokesman a share of the universal Western esteem for those within the pale of the truth. Few will lie when the alternative of telling the truth would entail no disadvantage. Very different traditions prevail in China. When I was first on my way there, I was ordered to check in with the U. S. Immigration authorities at San Francisco, in order to familiarize myself further with problems of Chinese entering the United States, particularly in the matter of illicit entry. A remark of one of the veteran inspectors at Angel Island sounded humorously cynical to me then, though he made it with reflective seriousness: "One time with another," he said, "a Chinese would rather lie than tell the truth." Within a few weeks I had to admit that I agreed with him. The conclusion is inevitable. The hourly evidence piled up in dealing with your servants, with tradespeople, with the so-called "high class" Chinese, with the rank and file of Chinese Government employees from generals to coolies, is too preponderant. With absolutely no advantage to be gained by lying, in a thousand instances where the explanation is of no importance one way or the other, a Chinese will relate the most absurd sort of cellophane lie. High and low, coolie or general, they will lie naively, reassuringly, always affecting surprised pain at your doubts, when within an hour or so the truth is certain to crop out.

Significantly, there is no word in Chinese with the exact odium and indignant contempt carried by the good hard English lie, the rasping German die Lugen, or the nasal but highly informative French monsonge. Necessity was not the mother of invention in this matter among the Chinese. To adopt the nearest Chinese equivalent, and advise a Celestial that he is telling "falsehoods," carries but little opprobrium and no insult. That merely puts needlessly into words something already taken for granted by everybody, a meaningless repetition of the universal Q.E.D. of the people and country. Persons of other countries living among the Chinese acquire rather quickly, if their contacts are varied and representative, a certain ability to interpret the probable realities out of the camouflage of deviousness and dissimulation with which about every thought and movement of a Chinese is cloaked.

They acquire in time, too, a certain ability to predict the consequences of situations in terms of customary Chinese reactions. That is, they gain skill in that very emphatically essential art, in dealing with the Chinese, of reading between the lines. For it is seemingly instinct with a Chinese to be obscure as to the true facts or his true intentions, and with the idea of assisting himself in this concealment he is commonly effusive in irrelevant or untrue particulars. This tendency is so deep-rooted that a Chinese will exhibit it even where no imaginable objection could exist to a straightforward statement of the case. From the smallest to the largest affairs, the aim always, among themselves and with foreigners, seems to be deception.

That a Chinese would rather lie than tell the truth is a cynicism so opprobrious to Western European and American standards, affected as they have been by religion and other traditions, that the majority of the uninitiated will prefer to reject it. But after discussing the Chinese with countless numbers of Americans, British and other foreigners of long residence in the Far East, along with my own experience, I must say that without any evident rancor of feeling or disposition to exaggerate, the majority, the overwhelming majority, are in agreement. This is an accusation only from our point of view. It is necessary to recall that lying has not the disesteem attached to it among the Chinese that it has with us, and it is therefore a deficiency of character chiefly in our estimate of them, and not in their estimate of themselves. But it becomes important to us when we have negotiations with them, and is for that reason worth noting. Usually the introduction to it is in the shops, upon first arrival. This is the innocuous, Oriental bargaining variety, and is expected by any wellinformed traveler. It is not so much lying in the moral turpitude sense as mere play-acting, the mutually understood little exhibition of sales dramatics, almost a part of the etiquette of any commercial transaction. Wang Lee swears that he tells the truth and that he has always been known to do so, that you can summon the foremost personages of the city to attest his scrupulous truthfulness, and that the price is positively ten dollars with never until doomsday a single penny of discount possible. You edge toward the door a little and he leaps in front of you, redoubling his protests that he is known up and down the street as a strictly one price dealer - but that you can have the article for nine seventy-five this once. The business goes on for some minutes, until finally you have the article wrapped up and hand over what you both expected at the outset-three dollars and a half. Yet if you show interest in another article the entire show will be repeated, and would be repeated were you to go in the same shop every day for a week. It is the custom, and only a few of the somewhat Westernized dealers of the cities have adjusted themselves to a more time-saving dispatch of matters. The majority of native dealers dislike the brusque take-it-or-leave-it attitude of Americans, and will even refuse a sum slightly in excess of what they expected to receive if it means foregoing their favorite theatrical workout.

The next category of Chinese inexactitude likely to be encountered is that of complete misrepresentation of circumstances and motives in routine household and office business, and this the foreigner finds rather irritating. It is soon enough manifest when he begins his dealings with the unexpectedly large staff of domestic help he finds himself employing. Here the real core of the Chinese proneness to lying crops out, though still harmless. It is accomplished with a readiness of wit that is surprising, even in a coolie or gateman you have previously found dull and slow of coordination.

The No. 1 boy, who is the generalissimo of the crew, lives with a few cardinal resolutions in his mind regarding his relations with the head of the house, and chief among these is that he should appear to have anticipated everything, however unexpected, that you may request. "Tell the gardener to prune off those dead limbs from that tree," you say. The No. 1 boy instantly answers that he has just told the gardener to do that very thing, and he believes the gardener is at the moment looking for the saw. "The cook should not put quite so much seasoning in the soup," you remark. And instantly again the No. 1 boy, who generally serves the table, will declare that but a few moments before he noted the cook's error in respect to the soup and properly reprimanded him. You know very well that the boy has never thought of the matter before, and he knows that you know it.

Of course, this trait is to a considerable extent an Oriental one, rather than specifically or endemically Chinese. But it is so conspicuous there, and operates every hour of the day so uniformly, that in appraising the Chinese people at large it must be taken into account. To relieve the issue of the instant with words is an unfailing Chinese reaction. It does not matter that the speaker will be caught up on points of accuracy a little later. Such a development will not usually embarrass him, nor is it expected to be the occasion of a reopening of the matter by you. It is almost a mental reflex, about as nearly automatic as anything not actually a physiological function could be. And the Chinese are supremely competent in employing without hesitation words which will in some faint degree fit the occasion and supply some sort of intended deception. Even with the most dull-witted coolies, it is extremely rare to see one hesitate.

This talent is invariably called into service when an employee has forgotten an instruction. "Did the chair boy go to the Joneses and call for those books this morning, as I told him?" you ask the No. 1 boy at lunch time. "He went and was told they would be ready this afternoon," the No. 1 unhesitatingly replies, assuring you at the same time that he will dispatch the chair boy for the books forthwith. Dropping in at the Joneses yourself a little later, you find that the books have been waiting for you since the evening before, and that nothing has been heard of the coolie calling for them.

In employment of Chinese involving any responsibility at all, foreigners in China encounter practically an impossibility in impressing upon native employees that initiative in reporting things amiss is preferred to the rooted custom of concealment and deception. The philosophy of the native goes much beyond that of restaurant waiters and cooks in America, who proceed on the assumption that what a person doesn't know never hurts him. The Chinese version is that whatever a person can't find out at the moment, irrespective of the certainty with which he will find it out a little later, is of no consequence. This last-mentioned trait is very characteristic of the socalled "high class" Chinese, and characterizes most dealings with Chinese officials.

"You told me exactly the opposite here in conversation not ten minutes ago," you remind an average Chinese official after the tea cups have been set down and the real business is under way.

"Ah, but you were mistaken - you misunderstood my meaning," answers the average Chinese official, hurt, but still smiling. Only he uses five hundred or a thousand words to say that.

"But what's more," you push on, "I have the same statement from you in a letter signed by you yesterday - this letter right here. Now you're contradicting every word of it. What do you want me to believe?"

"You are mistaken - you are my friend. We shall each do all in our power to make the every-happy relations of the two great republics closer. I am deeply troubled that your interpreter caused you to make a mistake. But it is all right. I can understand it. We shall do our best to assist you. Everything will be done."

"What will be done? And I'm not talking about the interpreter. Here is your letter and your signature right here. Now you're contradicting it all. Which story am I to believe?"

"There are no two stories. There is a mistake."

"Well, what you say now doesn't agree with what you said yesterday. One or the other is wrong. I'm asking you which?"

"The Great Confucius said that within the four seas all men are brothers. I am troubled deeply that you doubt my word. You must give me time - I will do my best. The case is very new to me. I have not had a chance before your honoring visit today to investigate it."

"But your letter yesterday, which I have here on the table, signed by you, states that you had thoroughly investigated the whole matter, that it was all settled, that you had issued orders for the cargo to be released. Now you say orally that you can't locate the cargo and that none of your men has ever heard of it and you don't believe there ever was such a cargo in your district."

"I have investigated faithfully. There is no cargo of such a kind. All my men have been questioned about it." "But you said a moment ago the case was new to you - that you had not investigated at all."

"Within the four seas all men are brothers. I strive earnestly to assist the honorable representatives of the great American Government at all times. I shall investigate at once and send you a report."

After two or three hours of that, if you have any wind left and want to make the effort, you can as likely as not take a turn along the waterfront and find the cargo - or whatever else may be in question - being guarded by a hookwormy torpid employee of the official you have just left. And on questioning him, he will tell you that the official was there that very morning, leaving orders that the cargo, confiscated on some pretext from a legitimate American firm, was not to be moved.

The Chinese seldom lie with consistency, and never with ingenuity. Their production aims at quantity, not quality. Current American fiction ideas about the sinister cunning of the Chinese with their matchlessly clever deception is laughable after a slight amount of first-hand experience. They could rarely fool a bright ten-year-old after he had been in the country long enough to get the hang of their style. Some American editor now and then urges the Government to send out shrewd diplomats to the Far East - men too electrically astute to be taken in by the polished suavity of the woolpullers there. As to that, it is true we have had some deplorable dullards among our diplomats in China, but not one, I believe, who was ever such a complete fool as to be fooled, by the Chinese.

We think of lying as a recourse, a somewhat venturesome and usually reluctant expedient intended to maintain a deception until the crisis of a difficulty is past. The Chinese idea of lying is first of all that it is an answer - a response of some sort, opposed to the bothersome or disagreeable actualities of the moment-designed to protract uncertainty in another person, or at least get rid of him. It may not even be expected to do this, but will be designed merely to parry the approach of the disagreeable. Chinese lies of this latter variety are often so ludicrously transparent that they could deceive no one for a single instant. They may be the first ill-considered absurdity that comes into the liar's head. But, eternally fond of words, he will stick tenaciously to one lie until it is hopelessly blasted, then without change of countenance ignore it altogether and switch to another equally preposterous, contradicting the first. And to gather his wits, while cornered and pondering a new one, your noble host may be relied upon to launch into proverbs, with which the tongue and head of every Chinese are at all times hopelessly infested.

That this trait has been deep in Chinese nature since the earliest times is evident in all the records preserved of their remotely ancient history. The Peking Gazette, a sort of journal kept of official business continuously for hundreds of years, was a tediously detailed and jumbled chronicle of day to day doings, somewhat in the manner of the so-and-so slaying so-and-so and this, that and the other person begetting in the Old Testament. Translated portions of this ancient Peking Gazette, reveal the identical talent for interminable lying and evasiveness in earlier days that distinguishes the Chinese now. The Peking Gazette does not stretch back into the infancy of Chinese history, by any means, but other available records do, with the same inferences all along the line. Other talents of the Chinese, to be discussed later, likewise glare forth from all the older records. As emphasized previously here, the Chinese have apparently not changed one whit inwardly during forty centuries.

As a good example of transparent, naive lying, which could be multiplied by very similar instances to the end of this book, I recall the experience of an acquaintance of mine in China who was in the habit of locking her provisions in the pantry when leaving the house. In this instance, she had gone a little distance on the way to her dinner engagement when she recalled something forgotten back at her residence. Entering the house, she came upon the cook, who was supposed to be in his own quarters downstairs, with a basket on the pantry floor and all about him containers of her provisions, from each of which he was removing a small amount of the contents. The pantry door was still locked, but was swung back against the wall with both hinges unscrewed. A screwdriver rested on the floor by the cook. Sailing into the fellow, my acquaintance began in the natural American fashion by asking him what he was doing there.

"Oh," the cook told her, "I was sound asleep in my room when I was awakened by a noise that sounded like the pantry door falling down. I was anxious to keep everything all right for dear honored mistress so I hurried up with my screwdriver. When I found the door down, I set about counting everything to make sure it was in order. I try at all times to please dear honored mistress with my humble efforts."

On one occasion in making an unexpected tour of my basement I came upon some of my own household help pilfering my fuel. This, of course, like all other foreigners, I accepted as something to be taken for granted, with the Chinese knowing I took it for granted, but with both sides maintaining the pretense of never suspecting such a thing. The aim of the Chinese in these situations is to keep from getting caught, and the aim of the foreigner is to affect complete confidence until he does the catching. And if he is wise and satisfied with his staff, he will not try very hard to do any too much detecting. But coming upon them red-handed, so to speak, I made an inquiry as to where they were taking the fuel. The explanation was easy - my fuel was always exhausted so rapidly that they were actually bringing in a little of their own to add to it, a procedure they'd been up to for some time, it seemed, a modest confession implying a distinct obligation I'd been under all along, only they were far too gracious to mention such a trifle. But as I'd finally discovered their devotion by accident, they were very, very pleased to have been thus of silent service to dear master. I thanked them, told them I could not think of allowing such generosity, and we all understood one another.

An interesting Chinese trait, worth mentioning here, is that very generally, if you catch some one doing something impossible to tolerate and tell him he is discharged, he will fall to pleading in the most pitiful fashion to be excused, and will get any possible "higher up" friends in the household to intercede for him with a good word. Then, if excused, a few hours later the coolie will ask for his wages, announcing that a message from somewhere tells him that his aged mother is ill. He pockets his wages and goes his way. By all the exactions of tradition dear to him he has saved his face. This same principle of "face" operates higher up in the cultural scheme. A Chinese official must have incurred the hatred of his superior clique very venomously indeed to be discharged outright. He is allowed to send in his resignation (perhaps with intimated assassination if he doesn't) once, twice, three times, before it is "accepted." This appears to be about the nearest approach in China to consideration for the fallen foe. It does not prevail all the time, but it occurs often enough to classify it as one of the existing systems of the country. It does not spring exactly from application of the golden rule, but arises from the fact that tendencies to compromise, deviousness and dissimulation are lodged inextricably in the molecules of every Chinese, and further from the fact that there is a lot of difference between the potential menace of a temporarily disgruntled loser and an intensely infuriated outright enemy. Chinese are strangely uneasy in the face of really explosive wrath, and prefer not to provoke it if there is any other course.

But further, on the subject of Chinese lying, I recall as typical a case which took up a good deal of my time off and on last year. An American mission school near Futsing had a vacant piece of land near the buildings. The heads of a Chinese school nearby kept hinting that as this plot was unused by the mission school, and was convenient to the Chinese school, it might as well be lent to the latter for use as a playground until the mission school desired to utilize it.

Very foolishly, the mission school agreed to this - something no keenwitted foreigner in China would ever do in the face of well known Chinese characteristics in such matters. But anyway, the property was lent to the Chinese, with a specific agreement that it would again be at the disposal of the mission authorities at any time they might see fit, with no claim in any respect by the Chinese. But the Chinese no sooner began using the lot as a playground than they began building a wall around it. A wall around property in China, by the way, is indicative of ownership.

The mission school head, alarmed at the prospect of losing the ground, protested at once. This accomplished nothing, and the wall was steadily built higher every day. The Chinese schoolboys stoned the mission crowd who protested. The local "police," naturally anti-foreign, even in a community where large benefits had been freely conferred by American philanthropy, refused help. In a civilized country, of course, the mission owning the land could have set out with its own workmen and demolished the wall. But in China that would merely invite incendiarism if not outright mob retaliation. Besides, missionaries are Men of God, and can't well proceed with direct tactics, in spite of the fact that the Chinese appear to understand man's wrath much better than they understand God's love.

The matter dragged on, the missionaries futilely protesting and the Chinese finally completing the wall and laying claim to the property. Nothing was to be done locally, so the case was laid before the American Consulate in Foochow. The Consulate exchanged the usual number of requests for justice for the usual number of promised investigations. Meanwhile the wall stood. Very vigorous demands were finally made to the Provincial Government, corresponding to an American state government. In time a memo of this and a good many other then long-protracted exasperations on the part of the Chinese was sent to the American Ministry in Peiping. About that time, the Peiping Government was particularly anxious to stand in well with the American Government in order to gain a sentimental ally against Japan, and simultaneously the Provincial Government at Foochow was particularly anxious to stand in reasonably well with the Chinese Central Government at Peiping for certain considerations of "splits" and support against a threatening rival gang.

After more weeks of calls and correspondence - not limited to this one small case, of course, but including it - the Chinese official responsible reported that the wall would be torn down at once. It wasn't. He reported again that the wall would be torn down at once. It wasn't. Demands on the Provincial Government were made stronger. The Chinese official responsible then reported by letter that the wall had been torn down and the property completely restored to its former aspect. We investigated and found it had not been touched. Again he declared in a letter that the wall was torn down, and we could go see for ourselves. We did go and found the wall untouched. This happened time after time. We talked vigorously in straightforward terms to the Provincial Government. The official responsible admitted that his previous claims had been "errors," but said the wall had at last been torn down, in proof of which he sent a photograph of the vacant lot. This was after two or three dozen dispatches, with an accumulated bale of signed assurances. Sure enough, the photograph showed the vacant lot, evidently snapped from a road bordering it and from such a position that were the wall still in place the photograph could not have included the view of the ground in question. But evidence of this kind is not to be accepted in dealing with the Chinese. Before we had time to set about verifying the official's report, the head of the mission school hurried forward with the explanation. He showed us a photograph he had taken himself, showing a hole in the wall a few feet wide. We investigated and found the official had merely placed a camera outside the wall and snapped the photograph through the hole his assistants had made for the purpose.

This evidence was taken over to the Provincial Government, with the official's signed report declaring the wall finally demolished, and a rather warm demand for action was made. Confronted with the evidence, and his stack of previous promises by that time filling more than a brief case, the official amiably ignored all past history in the case, talked of it as a fresh matter suddenly thrust upon him, seemed surprised that in a matter so new any impatience could be shown, and very readily agreed to investigate, to see if there had ever been a wall there, as we claimed! Of course, if the facts were as we contended, and a wall built under such circumstances really existed, he would be only too pleased, too pleased, to have it demolished at once. But the matter being entirely new to him, he would naturally have to make a few inquiries before he could answer us. The numerous letters from this very official on the matter meant nothing. He had been writing to us about it for a year or so, and knew every lying evasion that had been offered. Thus, ultimately, the wall came down!

But in tearing down this wall, the Chinese carefully left a few foundation stones on the ground level, hoping the missionaries would build over them - after which they could make an exorbitant demand to have their stones back or be paid a high indemnity. But the missionaries had been caught by this trick a year or so before, and this time it failed to work. Business of that kind, day after day, every case, however trivial, strung out over months and years of endless, aimless lying, with each lie merely a pretext for another, with all the while the consular officer impatient in the American way to render all the assistance possible to his nationals, has been responsible for a large number of American consuls quitting the China service in disgust. They cannot slip into the Chinese willingness to let things slide. The Chinese are comfortably at home doing nothing about anything while the American official frets his head off at the perpetual lying and evasion. A "case," to a Chinese, is merely a nuisance every time the consul calls, whereupon the Chinese must rouse himself momentarily from his torper and relate the most plausible lie calculated to get rid of the fretful American for another day or two. As soon as the American is out of sight the Chinese official prepares a face-gaining report for the local radicals of the Kuomintang showing how he opposed the foreign devil, then he goes back to his fanning, his tea and his opium pipe. Determined and full-of-life Americans, hindered by an indulgent Department of State policy, which is in turn determined by church and missionary power in America, wear themselves out in a chafing futility. All this explains why Consul Sokobin, frazzled out, had to be removed from Foochow as an invalid, and why Ernest Price, another of our predecessors at Foochow, found himself so distracted after years of it, helpless before Departmental policy, that he resigned in disgust and is now teaching in America. I could go down the list for pages with similar accounts of able men driven half out of their wits by Chinese methods.

The prevailing attitude toward sincerity and truth in China is worth reviewing for the reason that a very busy attack has been made in recent years upon the conceptions of our childhood. Reading The China Weekly Review and such highly colored publications put out by Chinese in Shanghai for American consumption, we are assured that we are grossly ignorant and behind the times for holding to any notions of a barbaric and backward China. The constant urge is that the world should bring itself up to date and behold a vigorous, enlightened, exaltedly moral and patriotically unified nation, where but yesterday stood a land medieval and discordant, plodding along in its ancient honest thrift and glory.

But on the spot there is not much to upset the good solid information of the days when I studied geography, heard the Chinese prayed for in Sunday School, and once in a while heard a missionary speak on problems of enlightening the heathen. Advocates of good will in latter times have gone so far as to create, for editorial and international fellowship forum consumption, a serious confusion between what many people hope China will do and what China has actually done.

It should be remembered that a Chinese is eternally a dramatist, a play actor in the midst of the most poignant realities about him. And where he is able to work his own mind off the actualities of an issue by the role he assumes, he counts upon removing your own focus from them vastly more. The speed with which the most bedraggled, cringing, smiling and piteous beggarly ricksha boy can change gears and become a shouting and cursing and spitting Oriental demon is eye-opening. Even round-the-world tourists, in Shanghai for a day, if they go about much alone, make this astonishing discovery soon enough.

I have seen Chinese deck passengers, by their convenient talent for selfinduced momentary grief, elicit immense sympathy among uninitiated foreign bystanders. Complaining that they have no money for fare - after already coming aboard - they scream, moan, and thresh about in a grand epileptic scene, gurgling meanwhile about sick parents or one of the usual expedients in such cases. The tears, in profusion, were unmistakably real. But grabbed by a strong-arm bos'un squad, and facing a certainty of being thrown off the boat, they could produce the money readily enough, then settle themselves among their poles and baskets and begin chatting amiably away as if nothing had ever happened. According to our standards, it is a melancholy truth that nearly every single word and gesture in China having the outward semblance of squareness, sincerity, loyalty and truth is a hollow rite, while the only genuine consistencies of words with actions are those in the field of rascality. . Thousands of years ago every procedure for every occasion was catalogued for the Chinese by carefully compiled books of rites. These rites were absolute, and canonical in text and motive. The number of days for weeping, widowhood, the ceremony of marriage, the age when a youth was grown, when a man became old, the positions of guests at table and everything else were set down for observance without deviation. Thus going through the outward form of these rites became the ostentatious passion of all, with underlying sincerity of no consequence.

In one of the ancient guides for youth - a sort of "What a Young Man Ought to Know" for China - occurs a story designed to illustrate the proper response if caught in an embarrassing predicament. The youth of the story was with his father as guest at a certain house. Alone in a room for a moment, the youth profited by that good fortune to seize a sleeveful of oranges from a bowl on the table. When the elder members returned to the room, the disappearance of the oranges was at once noted. Questioned, the youth first properly denied the theft, then broke down and spilled the oranges out of his sleeve. But amid his tears he gathered his wits, in real Horatio Alger fashion, and blurted out that the oranges were intended for his mother. That piece of quick-wittedness was praised by all concerned as ideal filial piety, and the youth was highly praised. It is not revealed what became of the oranges. The anecdote does not suggest at all that the boy's mother was desperately in need of oranges, or that he even had a mother. The moral is that recourse to one of the theoretically approved conventions - in this case filial piety - served to banish actual culpability, though not believed by anyone present.

Among foreign residents in China, when a house coolie or the cook announces that he must set off on a distant journey to visit his aged mother, the first thing to do is to look about to see what is missing. I had heard of this wisdom, and the first time a coolie came to me with the story of a sick mother I took a look around the premises - though unfortunately not until the coolie was out of sight. Sure enough, a bit of money laid aside for incidentals was gone. It is quite common - I should say usual - for a coolie who has been threatened with discharge, and pleaded tearfully to be kept on, to wait two or three days for face-saving, then announce that his aged mother is ill, and that he desires to go away for a "few days." He will almost never say that he is going away for good. The reference to the aged parent is not a story he expects you to believe. It is simply the conventional way of treating the affair. In matters of this kind, the Chinese have an immense lore of things that mean other things. One of the difficulties for a foreigner in reading their literature is to understand its real meaning. Thus a Chinese desiring to announce to another Chinese that his brother had been killed would perhaps go no nearer the actual facts - in words - than to mention that his brother's house had been damaged by wind.

Wherever we look in Chinese history we find it characterized by this absolute meaninglessness of words, with the virtues of loyalty, reliability and truth all tumbled into a sterility of mere outward noise. A few centuries ago, when China was a nation enlightened to a greater degree than any of its neighbors in the matter of arms and munitions, Malay pirates were troubling the South China coast. The pirates evidently made raids now and then upon the coast villages, settled temporarily and then took sail again. To break up this practice, the Emperor of China issued orders that all Chinese residents along that coast should remove inland a certain number of miles. For, he reasoned in his instructions, if there was nothing valuable along the coast for the pirates to come after, they would cease to trouble the Flowery Kingdom. At that time, theoretically, China was the strongest power on earth, yet she withdrew in alarm before a few small prahus full of naked Malays. Had the pirates set up residence on the coast, Chinese talents could have met the problem handily - the Chinese could simply have outlied them and outbred them. But an issue of swords and spears, though the Chinese possessed many thousand times the resources of the invaders, filled them with terror. In the journal of a traveler of a century ago among the Mongols - frontier nomads of the farmer Chinese Empire - we find that the lament of the Mongols was that while the Chinese would not fight them, their wheedling traders, pawnbrokers and the like managed progressively by flattery, skilled deception and eternal thrift to reduce them to a state of impoverished subjection.

Of the differences we see between various races, this absence of physical courage in the Chinese is perhaps a characteristic instinctively repellent to Anglo-Saxons. It is coupled, of course, with Chinese distaste for any kind of vigorous physical endeavor. No one ever saw or heard of a typical Chinese engaging in any sort of sport requiring activity. They are the one large group of the world's population having absolutely no traditions of physical contests for the mere exhilaration of feeling the play of muscles in friendly rivalry. Almost every veteran foreigner in contact with native Chinese has been asked in bewilderment why he plays tennis, or why he rides a horse without appearing to go to any definite destination. A frequent query is, "Why don't you hire coolies to bat the ball around and sit down and watch?" With the tens of thousands of Chinese men in foreign schools equipped with gymnasiums and often with physical education directors, it is interesting that there are no Chinese athletes. And even among the Chinese adopted and brought up in foreign families, reluctance to exercise appears strong. Those slant-eyed, yellow-faced tennis players you see on American campuses are nearly always Japanese, not Chinese. Efforts are being made in foreign or foreignized schools in China to introduce outdoor sports, but anyone watching the results can see that it is something mightily against the grain.

Chinese jugglers and acrobats are practically outcasts according to Chinese traditions; and special laws existed against them until recent years. The profession was hereditary, and one of the lowest. Profit was the motive, not zeal of an athletic sort. This absence of lusty physical exhilaration evidently accounts for the poor showing of Chinese in warfare, and with this in mind, any talk of the Chinese being a world power as soon as they gain adequate scientific knowledge is ridiculous. As a matter of fact, China for more than seventy-five years has had very able foreign military advisers, and dozens of elaborate munitions and arms plants have been built under foreign direction. Then as soon as the foreign director's contract has expired in each, and the plant is turned over to Chinese graduates of American scientific schools, it goes to rust and ruin in short order, or if it remains open, operates very incompetently. Particularly since the World War, when German ex-officers have been available at low cost, China's armies have been very plentifully supplied with them. But as the missionaries fail to give the Chinese character, foreign military advisers fail to give them courage. This is not a matter of ignorance and poor training. Northwest frontier tribesmen of India incorporated into British forces fight with passionate determination, though as illiterate as the Chinese.

Further on the business of that "Chinaman's word as good as his bond" business, I may mention that in the Chinese Navy, which is co-officered by retired British naval captains and commanders, each British adviser, from past experience, works on a basis of having his salary deposited in trust at a foreign bank for six months ahead at all times. Nobody in the Far East - on Chinese soil - trusts a Chinese where the Chinese has any possible way to slip out of the contract.

Written contracts were not usual in China in the past because there was no means of enforcing one at law. Hence bargains were about as good orally as on paper, with each party as wary as possible. Only a short residence in native China today is needed to hear of various Chinese who commit suicide - the usual expedient - to spite some debtor who refuses to pay.

The idea of going and killing him, natural to an Italian or a Cuban or a Mexican, seldom appeals to a Chinese. It is much better to make the offender lose face by killing one's self, a device which will direct unfavorable gossip upon the debtor. Chinese wives through the centuries past have been able to restrain ill-natured husbands from unendurable excesses of cruelty by this threat of suicide. The husband might not mind losing the wife, who could be replaced readily enough. The rub was that where a wife committed suicide, her family's clan could exact of the husband an elaborate funeral feast, for which they could dictate the menu and the number of guests. They invariably seized upon this occasion to get as much as possible for nothing, and by naming the most expensive viands obtainable on a wholesale scale, actually bankrupt a delinquent husband, besides making him the laughingstock of the community. The custom still prevails in China, I am informed, to a wide extent, and also the custom of a wife's family refusing to take her back once she is married, however cruel she may find her husband, on the claim that they cannot feed her for nothing. Modern American feminists would be interested in the accounts of a wholesale strike of Chinese girls in the Canton area a century ago. The girls then, as now, had no voice as to whom they should marry, and accordingly formed a league of which the tenets were that they would not marry at all, but would die first if need be! The new wife among all except the wealthiest classes is made the drudge of all work, and is in fact the slave of the whole household. The household is her husband's clan, of course, with anywhere from thirty to a hundred inmates. It is still regarded as the height of impiety for a newly married couple in China to set up a separate housekeeping establishment.

Disobeying parents was a serious offense under the old Chinese penal code, punishable by death if the parent cared to reveal the insult to the local mandarin. Striking a parent and equivalently serious offenses could be and were punished with death by slow torture. But in the matter of spite, it is significant that the immortal Confucius was not above it, nor did he appear to think it demeaning. Autobiographically he tells of an occasion when he was visited by a man he disliked. Confucius sent word to the door that he was not at home, then as the visitor turned to go away the great sage parked himself by a front window and began to play on his violin, in order that the man might turn and see and know in what regard he was held.

The wife of a fairly prominent Chinese with whom we were dealing at Foochow hung herself to spite her husband only a few months ago. He cracked her on the head with a soapstone letter seal, we learned, during a row over proper discipline of a child. True to form, the husband lost a great deal of face by her expedient.

People often ask questions as to the acceptability of an account recently published of an American girl who went to China and lived as a member of a Chinese family. There are, of course, many families, numbering them in dozens of scores, where this might be done without discomfort by an American. But among the four hundred million Chinese at large such families are infinitesimally scarce. From what I have seen myself of some of the customs among the so-called foremost cultured families of China, the experience would ordinarily be attended with developments unmentionably distasteful to a well-bred American, man or woman. The exact particulars in this are not appropriate to mention here. Among Chinese educated abroad, the experience would probably be less disagreeable. But strictly Chinese "native culture" includes a good deal that an average American finds revolting.

The supposition that because the Chinese are frugal (by necessity), they are therefore a people with thoughts given over to the things of the spirit is a notion swiftly banished on the scene. Among the proprieties of opening small talk, when you meet a Chinese, one of his first questions will inquire how much money you make. If he comes to see you, he asks you what rent you pay, or how much your house costs. These are polite formalities observed out of regard for etiquette. The purpose, so Chinese informed me, is to determine at once, by his income, "with what respect a person should be treated."

Money is the life and soul of the people, the nearest thing they have to a religion. Their fortitude in toil, where profits loom, is past belief. The only occasions upon which I have ever seen Chinese exhibit grief had to do with losses of money, though I have seen them lose friends and members of the family without the slightest trace of distress.

One of my Chinese employees had saved his money all his life, until he had accumulated $1,800 - a fortune to an average Chinese. Then with characteristic and incomprehensible Chinese gullibility he entrusted this sum to a man he scarcely knew, in a venture-some enterprise about which he knew less, and lost it. The blow nearly killed him, as it well might anyone under similar circumstances.

"Long time me can no go friend house," he explained to me. "Other man drinkee, eatee, laugh, makee good time - me no can say anything, no can laugh, no likee eatee. Outside, me say noffin, no cry. Inside, heart it he go all time all same one watch - ticky-ticky, ticky-ticky, hurt just here," - (he placed his hand over his heart) - "night-time no can sleepy - heart he go all same boom-boom. Never me bimbebye cry. Face no water fall downinside me hurtee - heart, he cry."

This same employee, relating to me the swiftness with which an old friend died in the cholera epidemic, burst out laughing at the humor of the occurrence. "Two night ago," he said, "me go one house he there all same one chow. He not know he soon die. Cholera come, he quick catchee, four hour more dead yesterday." And again my informer burst out laughing at this "surprise" to an old friend of his.

Old missionary and traders' journals mention so many similar experiences bearing upon the single soft spot in Chinese character that I relate this, as one of the number I met myself, to illustrate a trait we may fairly regard as characteristic. At a Chinese theater, the audience rocks with mirth in the poignant scenes of a father losing a son, or a home blasted by some calamity. This I have had occasion to observe more than once myself. A foreigner in China never ceases to encounter new and more astounding revelations of Chinese tenderness in the matter of money, and numbness of feeling in every other aspect of life.

It is an oddly interesting custom, at Chinese funeral rites, for the mourners to buy great quantities of paper, stamped to denote various high denominations of money. These are burned in order to provide the deceased with ample pocket money in the next world. It is common, too, in areas of China I have seen, to ornament a grave with a stone image of a horse. The Chinese, in these areas, seeing only the high and mighty ride horses, evidently wish to supply the deceased with the evidence of authority and wealth in the future life.

At various times I have made reference to the terrible Chinese penal code of empire days. Considering the people it had to deal with, this is one of the ablest compilations of law in history. It worked poorly because of the usual state of corruption and susceptibility to bribery among the mandarins, but in its theory, and as it did operate often enough to hold the country together, it is a remarkable testament to Chinese characteristics, good and bad. It took splendid advantage of Chinese traits as a leverage to attain what was looked upon as justice. For example, in the case of a very serious crime, the entire street where the crime occurred might be suffered to have every house destroyed. This was not as unreasonable as it seems. The Chinese, to this day in fact, are remarkable in the way they can keep track of one another's movements. A Chinese detective really anxious to find the guilty can do so more easily than in America, for the reason that most Chinese move in beaten paths, with somebody along the line sure to know of his activities. In the old days, a Chinese meditating a crime might be restrained by his neighbors if they could expect to bear a part of the penalty, and thus the business of pulling down all the houses on the street was well reasoned. Another device was to take one member of a family for punishment if the truly guilty could not be found. This took advantage of the Chinese clan and family obligation tradition very neatly, and probably millions of crimes were prevented by it. Life was cheap, and why not a father or brother if the culprit escaped? In really heinous offenses, such as insurrection, all the first of kin and even second of kin might be executed or tortured to death along with the guilty man. This possibility invoked such terrible associations of violated filial piety that a tempted Chinese might be induced to think twice before any overt act. The code provided for persuasion of witnesses in a manner directly the opposite of usages in America today, in which a witness is often excused from testimony on grounds that "he might incriminate himself." The Chinese idea, in many respects more practical, was that all the guilt attendant should be uncovered, and they followed this thread to its limits. At the faintest suspicion that a witness was insufficiently fluent, he was swung up naked, hammock-wise, and beaten half to a pulp. Then when called upon his courage was likely to be wilted to the point where he would talk freely. Our own "third degree" seems to have been just a mild variant of an old Chinese custom.

"Everything must be as it has been," seems to have been the impassioned motive of officials in China, and to that end they invoked all the terrors of their code. One device for getting witnesses to talk, or making criminals confess their confederates, was that of crushing the offender's ankles with a sledge hammer. This would be done at the outset, to insure true testimony, even among witnesses not themselves accused. Presumably this was one of the most excruciating agonies possible without impairing the mental clarity of a defendant, for with their cunning and long experience the Chinese managed to hit upon the tortures best suited to their purpose. We may conclude that in the main these methods worked as well as they could be expected to under the conditions of illiteracy and general backwardness in the country. The administration of criminal jurisprudence in China appears to have been fairly good at times, while the administration of justice in civil actions was usually very poor, and litigation was avoided by every prudent

Chinese. Crime was never scarce in China, by any means, for the torpid laxity of the police and the bitter poverty of the country, plus a complete absence of any sense of moral restraint, all tended to make robbery, theft, and banditry common. Murder for revenge does not appear to have been extremely common in ancient China, nor is it today, relative to the prevalence of crime as a whole. Love-killings, as our tabloids call them, are likewise not relatively numerous in China. Interestingly, too, we almost never hear of suicide for frustrated love among the Chinese, whereas among the Japanese, by all accounts, it is one of the problems of the country, vastly more frequent than anywhere in the Occidental world. Both in their crimes and in their punishments, we may find enlightening data upon the characteristics of a people. Tortures are no longer legal according to Chinese laws as they appear on paper. But in practice they are about as common as they ever were. ' There were no lawyers in ancient China, a happy circumstance which is one of the few that might help bear out the idea that in its heyday the country enjoyed peace and tranquility. The evidence and the punishment were judged by the mandarins. These were not trained in law, but were appointed according to their proficiency in the classics - which amounted to a vast lore of mixed poetry, proverbs, analects and chronicles, much on the order of

the Christian Old Testament or the Jewish Talmud. China was in advance of Western countries in requiring civil service examinations with competitive ratings for public positions. Had not the subject of study been so limited with opposition to all additions of a constructive kind, this system might have worked very well. As it was, the system was about like requiring a man to memorize Chaucer, the Song of Songs, Genesis, and a few other equally archaic things, in order to fit him for the duties of an architect, a judge, a civil engineer and a moralist, all of which the ideal mandarin was supposed to be - and naturally was not. Lazy and indifferent, the majority corrupt, they were rarely proficient in anything, let alone everything.

But in the hands of a mandarin of probity, as we may gather a few were, the famous penal code was admirably adapted to the needs of the country, and undoubtedly a great deal of first rate justice was administered under it. No writs of certiorari, habeas corpus, mandamus and the rest of the American folderol encumbered swift punishment, nor was doom stayed by attorneys contending that the warrant was signed in the wrong county, or with the wrong ink, or the rest of the familiar obstructions, legal but nonsensical, afflicting us today. There were no "new trials" with the idea that, if tried a sufficient number of times, a criminal might by averages have a chance to get off scot free. Rarely, very rarely, the privilege of appeal to the emperor was exercised, presumably in instances of civil judgment in most cases. This appeal was attended with hazards. One account tells us that the appellant was first given a sound beating, and then banished to a distance for a period to think the matter over. Then if he wanted to persist in his appeal, he was warned that if it should not be sustained by the emperor, and the evidence found insufficient for a redirected verdict, the appellant must suffer death. Accordingly, a Chinese in the days of celestial serenity lived some anxious moments after he rang the bell a second time. (The ceremony of an appeal to the emperor was by tinkling a special bell which hung over the emperor's head.) This procedure emphasized to all litigants that the high throne of the dragon was not to be pestered by dissatisfied losers on flimsy pretexts.

The most usual punishment for slight offenses, along with a prescribed number of strokes of the bamboo, was the cangue. This was a big wooden thing much like the top of a round dining table. It had an adjustable opening in the center through which the offender's head was thrust, and then the sliding boards of the cangue were fitted tight around his neck. The arrangement in use gave the wearer the appearance of having on an enormous flat wooden collar. He could not put his hands to his head, nor could he sit or lie or assume any position with any degree of comfort. A placard naming his crime was added, and the culprit exposed to public inspection in the streets. The mandarins were expected to address the populace from time to time, admonishing them to behave themselves, and when public conditions seemed to warrant it, special proclamations were posted publicly. The stereotyped ending of these was "Tremble and Obey!" And if the people were halfway discreet, they did. A great many present-day proverbs in China, having to do with the inadvisability of getting into law courts, give testimony to the awe and terror in which what passed for justice was formerly held.

Among the virtues of the Chinese is of prominent rank. The very people suggests its unfathomable depths. The different nervous constitution of the race evidently aids this tremendously. Small children assigned to confining work, such as intricate embroidery, will sit all day, day in and day out (they have nothing corresponding to Sunday as a break in the week in China) without signs of impatience. They bend their eyes close over their work and keep up the mechanical motions of their hands as monotonously as a machine, ten or twelve hours a day. In former times Chinese schools commonly began as early in the morning as there was light, and continued, with a break at noon, until darkness settled in the evening. The pupils were expected to keep their eyes fastened on their books and keep up also a humming sing-song with their lips to prove attention to the text. Peasants plodding in the fields and handicraft workers; along the village streets plug away without a sign of impatience or weariness hour after hour, often until far into the night. They do not work as fast as an Occidental, and it is usually impossible to hurry them. But nobody ever heard of a Chinese suffering a collapse of nerves. So far as anything except physical torture is concerned, they appear to have no nerves. In this connection I have frequently noticed, and I believe all foreigners in China have noticed, their complete indifference to noise. A Chinese clerk can make up his accounts or type his notes as congenially while a carpenter is hammering the floor under his chair as he could alone in the middle of Gobi. Not once have I ever so much as heard a Chinese refer to noise as a distraction. Such a possibility seemingly never occurred to one. Also, Chinese employees betray no impatience at unexpectedly long hours. What stretch of continued desk or household work would be necessary to cause one to show fatigue, no one can imagine. At hours of overtime they make no complaint, but plod on without a change of countenance.

Those employed in American government and business offices seem absolutely tireless. Few ever ask for a vacation, and this is rather meanly taken advantage of by foreigners, government and business employers alike. In the American consulates, naturally, all government employees have, up until this year, been allowed one month annually with pay. But fear that they would anger the consul keeps most Chinese employees from availing themselves of the privilege which in theory is theirs by right. In one office I knew, a Chinese employee had worked twenty-three years with only a few days off, and that was on the occasion of some important family ceremony. Another had worked thirty-seven years in the same office without any vacation as such, and was then given a trip to Hong Kong by an appreciative consul. The enthusiastic plans for recreation - an impatience to get at tennis or riding or something else - characterizing most foreigners, never interfere with Chinese at work. They impress us as being incapable of fuming about in anxiety to get at something other than what they are doing at any time. They have no frenzies except those of despair in extremities. Even the small children are vastly different from ours. The turbulent shouting and jumping about from the instant of dismissal, such as we see among American kindergarten and lower grade pupils, does not prevail among Chinese children of the same age. They play at times - with kites or dolls, or at beating with sticks any roaming dog that can be cornered - but the excited jumping about known among us is rarely seen.

And if their inner traits were not enough for the serene patience that is conventional in the country, such patience would be developed by the training necessary to write Chinese characters. Every word is a different character in Chinese, with minute dots, curls and whirligigs all important to the specific meaning. A lifetime of concentrated work is required to master the writing of all the words supposedly familiar to a real scholar - about forty thousand in number. The language is not written according to any consistent principles of phonetics, nor is it consistently pictographic. A system of indicators, made with primary strokes, denotes the general meaning of a character, and the additions of hair-line flourishes, dots and so on define the exact meaning. But even Chinese of moderately good education, if asked to translate an old inscription or a poem, will commonly fail to recognize several characters present. Education in the main consists of learning more and more characters, and learning to write them. All this doubtless develops the memory for things seen and cultivates careful observation as well as patience. In any event, the memory of a Chinese for a face, or for anything written, is uncanny if his attention has ever been directed to it once. Chinese books on natural history, medicine, astronomy and the like reveal attentive regard for details observed but amazingly poor reasoning in efforts to establish conclusions from these details. They learn well the habits of animals, the recurrent positions of stars, the differential diagnoses of disease and many other things in the world of natural phenomena, but fall down hopelessly in their failure to deduce from any of their data constructive inferences in any systematic order. That is, they impress us as primarily an intelligent people but, not an intellectual people, and one gathers from conversation with returned students from foreign universities that this difference still applies to those educated abroad. We do not find in their ancient scholarship, the progressive reasoning forward from point to point that distinguished the thinkers of classic Greece, nor do we find any approximation of the constructive thinking in mathematics developed among the Arabs. It is easy to see that China could never have produced a Euclid or a Descartes. The relatively simple utilities of physical laws and natural forces known to them may be classified more as discoveries in most cases than inventions.

Neither causality nor finality ever seemed to trouble them. They were content with elementary relationships, without much in the way of constructive efforts to discover new truths from these. They discovered the behavior of the magnetic needle, the explosive properties of saltpeter and charcoal and sulphur mixed together, the processes of paper making and other things. But they went nowhere in mathematics. Very simple principles of geometry escaped them, and algebra left them completely untouched. The advantages of decimal numeration were not utilized. At the present time the majority of Chinese shop-keepers use the abacus - that thing with sliding beads we employ in primary grades - to compute prices. They are surprisingly swift in some kinds of simple multiplication and division, but are usually perplexed and often helpless at multiplication or division of complex fractions. They appear to have known nothing of clockwork in the past, though they discovered facts of metallurgy at an earlier period than did races of the West. They learned the leverage power of the pulley, but never carried this knowledge farther. They learned and utilized the strength of the arch in building. But surprisingly, they never learned the art of making glass. In the useful and ornamental arts they did fairly well. They learned the uses of pigments for paints and dyes, and learned too a variety of processes for such things as lacquer making, wood joining and silk culture. They learned the value of fertilizers but made very little headway in understanding chemical principles. There is reason to believe that they discovered the property of steam as a power in early times, but if so they never did anything with it. Similarly it is possible that they knew centuries ago the immunization properties of animal virus as protection against smallpox, but again if that is true they omitted turning the discovery to practical advantage. Ever and again through their long history the strange Chinese have remained on the threshold of imminent advances all along the line, but stopped there, to remain in substantially the same balance of enlightenment and ignorance in which their earliest history, beginning in 2205 B.C., reveals them. They are there yet.

Through all the misery and chaos of China the remarkable clan system of the people, now as in the past, is the strongest force for the maintenance of the social structure. Districts and provinces may switch allegiance from day to day, but the family loyalties persist unchanged. The clan system is both the strength and the curse of the country. It prevents the total destruction of the social order, yet it assures the continuation of customs which militate against improvement in needed directions.

It has been mentioned that Chinese families tend to live in family herds, each household often a miniature village in itself, with parents, grandparents, children, uncles and cousins all under one roof or under adjoining roofs. Where for business reasons one member moves to another residence, the allegiance still holds. If he prospers, he is expected to share his earnings - or his proceeds from banditry or whatever else his occupation may be - with less fortunate members of the clan. The tradition of family obligation is so strong that very few Chinese care to resist it. The whole theory of selfrespect for an individual is based upon this system. Many present-day Chinese realize the mischief of it. But these are the fortunate ones financially and they are outnumbered by the unfortunates. If a lucky individual makes money and refuses to divide it with his relatives, though they may be shiftless and good for nothing and unwilling to work if they get a chance, public opinion supports the impecunious and perhaps undeserving relatives in their demands upon him. Vast numbers of profligate gamblers, opiumsmoking wastrels and lazy roues live in pleasant idleness by their levies upon more industrious uncles or cousins.

And what if the sorely-tried industrious member of the family decides to call a halt and shut his wallet? Immediately the rest of the clan rise up and denounce him to the community. A favorite expedient is to pack mats and blankets forthwith to his gate, by which the whole drove of outraged relatives will camp and shout to passers-by their version of the affair, heaping abuse upon the delinquent.

A Chinese, callous in many respects, is acutely sensitive to ridicule and public acrimony. He is a rare individual who is able to resist this pressure. After many inquiries I could never learn of a single authenticated instance of one remaining happily indifferent to such tactics. Henry Mei, one of the prominent lawyers in Shanghai, and a graduate of the Columbia University Law School, told me that he regarded the clan system of sponging as one of the foremost ills of China today, and one of the most difficult obstacles in the way of building up a better social order for the future. Mei was born in America, and was thus an American citizen, but renounced his American citizenship a few years ago to adopt the citizenship of his ancestors. He is very highly regarded, is thoroughly modern in his outlook, and from his American upbringing and education gives the impression of being much more an American than a Chinese. Yet he is not free from the claims of relatives whom he never saw until he was grown, and whom he would have been just as happy never to have seen at all.

Not only do impecunious relatives demand cash assistance as a right, but exercise at will the traditional right of coming with bag and baggage and droves of children to spend as long a time as they please at the home of one who has made money. A fortunate Chinese may expect a flock of poor relations to bring their pots and baskets and mats and camp on his premises as they please. One individual who had prospered took a house near one I occupied myself (though prior to my day there) and set out to live "foreign style." He was immediately set upon in the traditional manner by a horde of rustic relatives. His rice bill grew until he saw no way to meet it nor could he get rid of his unwanted guests. In resignation he abandoned the effort to live in luxury, and returned to a Chinese house and the Chinese outward semblance of impecuniousness.

Few Chinese homes in areas outside foreign settlements will reveal on the outside any indication of prosperity. If you go inside, you may find things intimating comfortable means, but the wall and the gate and everything outside will be in woeful disrepair, suggesting the slums. The advantage of this is that claims of having no money can be better sustained by such evidence, and also that outward evidence of wealth would invite official extortions as well as plots by brigands. Unlike most other people in days of prosperity, the Chinese conceal theirs from the world as much as possible in most instances, and make it known only to trusted friends and guests in the form of elaborate feasts, putting little into "plant equipment," as we should say.

I knew one well-to-do Chinese with modern ideas who successfully combated the demands of poor relations. One rural relative pestered him particularly, until the well-to-do modernist confessed his troubles to a local official. The official took a squad of men to the insistent relative's house, seized him, chopped his head off and hung it up in a tree. After that the modernist lived in peace. At least he looked peaceful enough when I went not long afterwards to his house for dinner. Modernistic heresy of this sort is rare, however, and the overwhelming majority of Chinese reluctantly accede to the old traditions.

The clan system explains why more Chinese do not starve. As long as one has a relative a shade better off than himself, he can expect a division. This division is not made with a show of loving kindness. It is often hard fought for, and gained only after the more prosperous of the two has tried in vain to show that he has nothing to share, and is finally threatened with the dread picketing, an extremity developing only now and then in the case of unusually resistant persons.

It is noted that what a Chinese demands under this system, and what he gets, he looks upon as a right, not as anything to be grateful for. This tradition is worth remembering in connection with American philanthropy, to which the Chinese help themselves readily enough, with an accompaniment of the polite words of thanks and appreciation that they know foreigners expect, but without much evidence of warmth of heart in the business.

The Chinese clan system is responsible for a vast number of worthless government employees. An official of standing is expected to fill openings with relatives, and if no openings exist, to create them. The hordes of cousins and nephews must be satisfied, irrespective of any claims of ability. But this is only one of the many curses of the system.

Traditions equally alien to our own, of which space precludes a detailed review here, characterize the Chinese as we find the preponderant majority of them in the year 1933. It is not astonishing, therefore, that with a momentum of such deep-set convictions and traits, upon a background such as theirs, the Chinese do not see eye to eye with us in all the particulars of our international relations. But alert opportunists as they are, and ever accommodating with words, they agree with our point of view for the sake of polity, and meanwhile pursue their age-old aims with unaltered instincts as they have for centuries past.


IT is a very ancient usage of metaphor to speak of life, both individual and racial, in terms of streams and currents. There is at times a useful fitness in this visualization. It intimates meanings difficult to make clear without figurative language, and for which no other figure seems equally well suited. For the Westerner in the Orient there is a renewed appropriateness in the imagery. In the case of the Chinese, even in a physical sense they seem to us a yellow flood of live things, swirling and billowing before us in numberless thousands everywhere, so similar, so endless, that they appear more a fluid mass, a ponderous simmering stream, than individual entities.

But more than in this outward aspect the Chinese suggest some inner current, some invisible motivating force bearing them along, of which they are but the physical evidence, patterning them all to common characteristics of mind and soul as well as of body. We feel in the race merely the perpetuation of this life stream, the expression of the peculiar mystery in its constancy from progenitors to posterity. The Chinese appear less susceptible to counter influences of environment than many other races with which we may compare them. We come to doubt that any Chinese really free themselves from the powerful influences of conformity to a racial pattern. Their racial life stream is as permeating as a methyl dye, as reduplicating as yeast, actuating each to see, think and feel in the typical Chinese manner. The educated Chinese may parrot the words we use to express our own contrasting outlook and sense of things, but within depths beyond the reach of intellectual compliance he remains alien to us, and faithful to the forces of the life stream in which his soul was born to swim. To what extent the Chinese at large are what they are because of their inner racial spirit, and to what extent they are so because of long continued hardships of environment, we cannot accurately measure. The two forces merge indistinguishably, and we can observe only the force of the combination.

In the matter of environment, many centuries have passed in China since the average individual there had any significant control over his lot in life. When he emerges to existence, it is not to look upon choices, but to face forward along lines of narrow necessity, along a slim furrow of possible survival kept open by his family ancestors through the thicket of competing humanity. Into this he steps and toils until he dies.

There is no escape, no means of reaching a status of relative comfort and security, whatever the effort. Experience teaches him that moderately intensive effort means perhaps enough to keep alive, less means starvation, and more futility. The principle applying to physical endeavors applies likewise to moral endeavors. Moderate goodness keeps him out of jail, a less amount risks penalties, and a greater amount sacrifices needlessly much that he might otherwise enjoy. The Chinese thus becomes the most coolly calculating materialist the world has ever known. He lives skeptically immune to moral enthusiasms, having long ago arrived at an opportune materialism whither some of our own gospel ministers tell us we are now rapidly drifting.

Many centuries ago the Chinese adventured their farthest in moral observances above the deadline of necessity, below which no crowded society can survive. By all evidence they did not go very far above this deadline at any time. Traditionally they have acknowledged mentally what the brute world acknowledges with instinct - that an alert and prudent selfishness dominates in the end all things. In such a society, a freak individual actuated to higher conceptions had to carry on at a tremendous disadvantage. With this realization, though unworded, in his experience, the Chinese of today is disposed to look upon our effervescence of moral loftiness as an impracticality, something that cannot long be sustained, something juvenilely untutored in the longer lessons of human nature.

In the scheme of things for the average Chinese, with so little reserve against adversity, the chance hazards of a poor crop, a war, an oppressive local official, a flood, a famine, a plague of insects, or a charge preferred by a malicious neighbor, defeated often the best efforts of toil. Hence with enough prudence to keep outside the law, in this monotony of repeated generations born only to survival, there was little difference between what life might offer to the virtuous and to the wicked. The aspirant for moral improvement, if there was any such among the downtrodden poor, found himself beset by conspicuous futilities. Survival was the aim, and the vices that might assist it were as attentively studied as the virtues. Similarly, the vices that might brighten moments of leisure were cultivated as expediently as the moralities to the same end. A philosophy of opportunism, weighing the dividends, governed in both.

Meanwhile there remained a small group more fortunate, a few scholars, versed in the moral aphorisms of the sages. These kept alive admonishments to rectitude. Their proverbs and tenets were in spirit a part of the law of the land, invoked in ordinary criminal and civil judgments. In this way the vocabulary of righteousness became familiar among the common people, who thus understood what was expected of them in the way of behavior. But the common people - and likewise most of the uncommon - while knowing what was in theory expected of them, found conditions of survival often dictating contrary courses. But the code was powerful in theory. Few cared to apply it to themselves, but each was ever alert to apply it to his competitors. To show esteem for the law, it was best for every man with ideas of getting along well to go about with lofty principles constantly on his tongue. This system of profuse moral proverbs was a sort of banner betokening a person's affiliation with the forces of righteousness. It was wielded in every transaction of life, to show that a man so steeped in its principles could not possibly be a violator. With everybody practicing this expedient nobody was deceived. The vocabulary of righteousness was likewise esteemed because it belonged to the sages of the past, and was therefore sacred - in theory.

Passionate rectitude was asserted in every negotiation, with nobody accepting the words for literal truth. The loftiest declarations of honor, everywhere used and nowhere meant, became as much taken for granted as the "dear" in the salutation of our most impersonal of letters. Thus in time the language was debauched until no words were left which were not a mere ritual instead of an expression of conviction. This is a condition impressively apparent in other parts of Asia, where every shopkeeper and peddler opens with "May I perish if I speak falsehood," or some similar conventionality, the while aiming at the most ridiculously transparent fraud. But from the experience of foreigners who have lived in various Oriental countries, we may infer that the Chinese have outdone all others in this corruption of the entire vocabulary of honor and integrity to an unmeant ritual. Among them a vast etiquette of lying long ago supplanted all literal implications.

This lying has been described previously. Reference to it here is in connection with the difficulty, not to say impossibility, of lodging in the head of the average Chinese any notion that what is said is meant. Upon insistence that terms of honor and square dealing are thoroughly meant, the Chinese replies "of course" - he would never think of doubting you. In thus agreeing, incapable of sensing your seriousness, he feels he is merely reciprocating the ritual. The Chinese are inclined to hear in the missionaries' "good talkee" nothing more than a Western variant of their own immemorial camouflage. The emphasis upon moral values is nothing new to them. They have had them abundantly on their tongues, going their devious and unchanging ways, for thousands of years.

The Chinese use moralizing words regularly for the same reason the lowclass French use perfume - to distract attention from the underlying dirt. It is the custom of the country. You can find the loftiest sort of moralizing in letters from Chinese bandits demanding ransom for kidnap victims. Caught red-handed in the most outrageous rascality, your illiterate coolie will burst loose like Old Faithful in a geyser of moral rhetoric, without the slightest concern at an inconsistency between the utterance and the evidence.

With such a conception of the uses of the vocabulary of virtue, it is not astonishing that the Chinese so readily assent when the missionaries urge upon them its value. The exasperation is that they refuse to look upon it as something for reflection. It is too familiar to be given second thought. Have they not always admired the words of righteousness?

So much for the tenacity of the Chinese in their adherence to racial spirit, their traditions from environment, and their differing conception of language, with every moralizing word a double entendre, its literal meaning obsolete.

Because this chapter and the next dwell upon the unsuccessful efforts to merge Western with Chinese ideas, it is well by way of prelude to invite examination of our own characteristics - the things that most contrast our racial current with that of the Chinese.

Our foremost distinguishing feature is the confidence, in individuals and masses, that great additional human progress is possible by united efforts, that human cooperation, assisted by time, will steadily diminish the afflictions of existence. We instinctively look upon time as an ally, expecting the future to do for us what the past has left unsatisfactorily incomplete. Except among the few educated Chinese mimics of Western ideology, these conceptions do not appear to occupy the thoughts of the Chinese. What is more, the Chinese at large appear immune to the spirit of such an outlook. They may parrot the words we use in regard to it, but the inner spirit remains alien.

Our philosophy springs from the youth of our race stock, and it has been increasingly energized by the enormous success we have had during the last three centuries. We look back upon these strides, and believe they will continue toward an exalted destiny for ourselves in which the rest of mankind will share. A run of luck for a few centuries, slight in the long perspective of history in which empires have risen and fallen, has invigorated us with the confidence that all presently besetting obstacles are surmountable. It is difficult for us to realize the extent to which this philosophy is a product of favoring fortune. Not far behind us we have the conquering blood of Roman legions, and of conquering Teutons, Danes and Normans. For twenty-five centuries this march of triumph toward new horizons has had but few and brief intermissions. Energy was rewarded - new forests ever waited the ax and new mines the pick. Across Europe, across the Atlantic, across America, it has gone militantly forward. For nearly five hundred years our religious and political emancipation has been increasing, encouraging individual thinking in ethical and social ways to produce an aggregate of human kindness and cooperative aspiration vastly above what the church itself had offered or previous governments had permitted. At the same time, premiums upon invention have achieved an average of wealth which, while not eradicating selfishness, have been sufficient to induce a certain magnanimity of outlook.

Thus the social conceptions bred were far above those that would have settled upon us had the great majority of the population toiled steadily in a treadmill fetching only enough for survival. In our past, opportunity has fallen upon lusty stock - stock vigorous enough to win and to hold, but with enough instinct for organization to expand and develop, and above all, in later times, to share. In America, for twelve generations in succession, parents have been able to look forward to wealth for their children exceeding that they enjoyed themselves. In such a fortunate scheme of things a philosophy of triumph, doubtless innate in our life stream from earlier warrior days, has been confirmed until it has reached the condition of a blind cult of faith in all desires. But where this militant determination was effective for routing redskins and slaying buffaloes, where the opposition was in concrete form, it is reasonable to recognize that in desiring to indoctrinate such a philosophy into a people whose entire experience refutes its applicability to them, we are up against a vitally different problem.

In effect, we ask the Chinese, with their history of futility, to accept a philosophy of worth-whileness of effort and one that is directly a product of success. For Christianity, as we offer it to the Chinese, is merely the brandname of all that we regard as favorable to our general welfare. The foundations of our material success were being laid in the science of Greece and on the battlefields of Roman legions well before the Christian era began. Christianity is for us, in its theology and ethics, a cult of reward for effort, temporal and eternal. To Chinese skepticism, the eternal part is hard to accept, while the conditions of his environment do not permit the belief that he will be much better off in this life, whatever creed he professes or does not profess. Life is hard, and he prefers to stick to the ancestral methods of utilizing all opportunities to keep going. If they happen to be virtuous, well and good. If not, he is in no great pain of conscience. As a choice, he looks to expediency first, last and all the time. That a Christian God will look out for him any better than his household idols he doubts. Looking around him, he sees neighbors who have professed Christianity suffer illness, oppression and catastrophe as he suffers them. He may be told that the Christian God loves him, and is kindly. But in the absence of concrete testimonial to the fact in the rice pot, he agrees with words alone. He is not easily to be moved from the notion that he must look out for himself, and he is wary of any moral handicaps in the undertaking. The primary question of all things with a Chinese is, does it pay? Our missionaries in China are there to tell him that to be more like ourselves would pay. The missionary assumptions reflect our life-current Western philosophy - that man can conquer obstacles in his social and economic order and steadily improve upon these orders - and that the Chinese will receive the Message if once they understand it, and that they can apply all our Westernisms associated with it if they desire to do so. Believing in ourselves, we believe also in the Chinese capacity to repeat our performance once they have it explained to them.

The best-informed impressions as to the results of missionary efforts in China require radical revision on the scene. A summary of what has been done and is being done offers the oddly contradictory conclusion that the missionaries are doing a vastly better work than people in America suspect, while at the same time it is a work which would probably receive less support if the full facts about it were known.

This paradox needs a little explaining.

Probably most persons of representative acquaintance among American missionaries in China feel rather heavy-hearted at setting out to review their work impartially. From having been the well-received stranger within the gate to becoming the critic without it there is a change of role to be faced with reluctance. Their hospitality is remembered as generous and sincere, and often not a whit the less so because the stranger has himself failed to feel the particular emotional objectivity with which their own lives have been influenced. What we regard as their errors are of a sort to elicit sympathy rather than indignant condemnation, and this sympathy possibly helps explain the silence of most writers in the past regarding some details of their work.

In China all persons engaged in philanthropic endeavors are called missionaries. This includes doctors and other social service workers who have never preached in their lives. The term missionary will be used here in this inclusive meaning.

The true missionary in the religious sense is like the true evangelical ecclesiastic of all varieties - he is what he is because of some inward urge to pass on to others convictions he feels to be of divine inspiration. The missionary is not only what he is because of this urge, but he is also where he is because of it. Perhaps the extra ingredient is a touch of adventurousness. Anyway, the true missionary is better satisfied off in some barbaric nook of the map hammering elusive moral abstractions at blinking heathen pates than he would be trying to further the same principles among people who would know what he was talking about.

These true missionaries, evangelists, have been the pathfinders and the corner stone layers in China. They have initiated the enterprises now considerably served by persons of less mystic fidelity to the unseen, but with as much or more zeal to improve the lot of the less fortunate in visible ways. Missionary work in China has shared the transition shown in religious undertakings in America, a transition from an almost complete emphasis upon man's spiritual destiny to an ever-broadening interest in his temporal welfare. Especially among the Protestants in China, Christianity has gone relatively farther in social service as an extension of its spiritual objective than in America. The missionaries to China of a century ago were concerned with saving souls. Today, besides this aim, they are busy teaching hygiene, improving crops and carrying on a general broadside effort at uplift. A part of this new emphasis arises from necessity. They must have bait of a material sort, for it was pretty thoroughly demonstrated that as long they talked theology alone the Chinese would pay little attention. The mission school education and other advantages now offered to Chinese work like the free lunch at a real estate auction. They draw the crowd, and out of the multitude attracted the missionaries count on making a few converts. The history of Christianity in China is worth going into, because some of the inferences from it are enlightening.

When Marco Polo traveled, over China in the thirteenth century, he found droves of Christians everywhere. They were then a large and influential sect in the country, it would appear, with temples in most or all the large cities. These Christians were Nestorians, the result of missionary efforts by the Nestorian Church which was at that time and in preceding centuries a strong force east of the Mediterranean. They were not identified with the Roman Church, but they were for a long period vigorous and aggressive, and in contact and presumable cooperation with the Christians who had at a very early period planted their creed in India. Either from Asia Minor or from India, China was visited by Christian missionaries, according to evidence, during or before the seventh century.

The Roman Church seems to have first penetrated China about the middle of the thirteenth century, when the Khan dynasty, then ruling the country recently conquered from the Chinese, extended an invitation to the Pope to send out a contingent of his ablest instructors. A few priests made the trip, were well received, and commenced operations. They encountered flourishing flocks of Nestorian Christians, and it is recorded also that there were in China at the same time large numbers of converts of the Greek order. Neither of these brands of the faith pleased the Pope's emissaries, however, and competitively they launched their own campaign.

Here a fact of significance appears: Europe lost touch with China for two centuries following the initial missionary efforts in the thirteenth century. During this period the Nestorian Church had fallen into desuetude at home, no longer prosecuting missionary work in China with vigor. When contact between China and Europe was resumed actively in the sixteenth century, the originally large Christian communities had disappeared. Both among the Nestorians and the Roman Catholics, Christianity had waned and passed into oblivion in China when it ceased to be refreshed by continuous stimulation from without. Essentially alien to Chinese temperament and character, it could not survive there without constant external nourishment.

This same spiritual sterility is evident in China today. When wars and other turmoil oblige foreign missionaries to abandon a mission post for an extended period, it is common for Christianity to die out at that post in their absence. It is a reasonable conjecture that if foreign efforts to Christianize the Chinese were dropped entirely today, with no more foreign money forthcoming, Christianity would disappear from China within a few decades. Both the history of the past, applying to the country as a whole, and the events of the present, observable in isolated Christian communities, support this view.

Incidentally, we read in the New York Times of July 6, 1933, a timely item about desertions from the Christian ranks in times of chaos in China. The headline announces "59,000 in China Drop Christianity." The source of the news is a report of the Laymen's Foreign Missions Inquiry. "The Civil Wars and the anti-Christian movement accompanied by an attempt to overthrow the church are held to be responsible chiefly for the decline." From the accompanying statistics, it would appear that this drop of fifty thousand is from the ranks of the Protestants alone, who constitute only about a sixth of China's allegedly Christian population of two and a half million persons.

What the report does not state, but which should be added, is that the suspension of mission stations and reduced mission funds leave Christianity a non-paying proposition in many areas for the Chinese.

It is an astounding reflection that every religion that has ever entered China and been left to its own devices has died there. Judaism, Nestorian Christianity, Greek Christianity, and Roman Catholicism have all fallen to extinction when submitted to the test. Buddhism and Mohammedanism have also died there, though they survive as names without much trace of either their original theology or their original ethics. Confucianism and Taoism, which originated in China, would in any other country have become religions. In China they have remained cults of philosophy among the learned. Never has China produced a religion, and never has China accepted a religion. That this indicates something singular in the Chinese spiritual sense is evident in the fact that implantations of all the religions that have perished in China have survived elsewhere in isolation. Christianity has kept its identity through the centuries in Armenia, in Abyssinia, and among the Malabar converts of India, without any extra-territorial support from more vital world centers. By contrast China is the bone yard of missionaries and the morgue of religions.

Only the missionaries are oblivious to the preponderant evidence against their success. Deceived by superficialities now and then into supposing they are making some religious impression, they look with color-blindness upon the more solid indications of their defeat.

One missionary told me, however, in hushed confidence, that he and his co-workers realized their ineffectualness, but were "carrying on for the Kingdom," though they didn't expect the Kingdom ever to come any nearer the Chinese than it is now, nor their work nor that of any other Christian group to show the slightest long-run advantage. This left the inference that futilities when implemented with prayer books and communion are approved by the inscrutable Providence of the evangelical missionaries, and that the missionary gets personal credit from Heaven for doing what he may reasoningly believe to be useless. He dutifully goes through the motions of the sower of the seeds of truth, and if the ground under foot is hopelessly full of stones and tares, it is not his fault. He has covered his acreage, and trusts his paymaster for an immortal reward, none the less because no crop results. But it is to be emphasized that this is a minority view.

Father Matteo Ricci
Matteo Ricci, 1552-1610, an Italian Jesuit priest, one of the first Western scholars to master Chinese script and Classical Chinese

Returning to the historical side of the matter, the Roman Church was in a mood for more militant missionary endeavors after the discovery of the Good Hope water route brought renewed contacts with China. Through Father Matthew Ricci, in 1582, Roman Catholicism reestablished itself in China three hundred years after its first blossoming and early oblivion there. It has been in continuous service in China ever since that year, the work of Father Ricci, who died in 1610, being carried on by increasing numbers of successors. Before the middle of the seventeenth century the Empress Dowager of China and many others of the royal family were professed Catholics. By the year 1700 there were 300,000 Chinese listed as converts. Protestant mission enterprise did not begin in China until 1807, with the arrival in Canton of Robert Morrison, a Scotch Presbyterian, sent out by the London Missionary Society. During the next few decades after Morrison's beginning, Protestant Missionaries arrived in ever increasing numbers. One convert was gained by 1814, after seven years. At the end of twenty-five years, after the missionary force had been greatly augmented, the number of Protestant Chinese converts, or professed converts, had according to the records swelled to ten. That indicates rather uphill going. But the material advantages of Christianity had not then been utilized as much as later to induce profession of faith. In more recent times, with a free mission school education a stepping stone to remunerative employment, the Chinese response has been more encouraging.

The number of Chinese self-proclaimed Christians in China today is estimated at around 2,900,000. Of these, around 400,000 * or so are listed as Protestant and 2,500,000 as Catholics. It will be recalled that the total population of China is estimated at four hundred million. There are now around 225,000 Chinese enrolled in Protestant schools and colleges in China, and about 290,000 Chinese enrolled in Catholic schools and colleges there. **

*This total of Protestants does not take into account the estimated recent loss of 50,000 to 75,000 alleged Protestant converts. I find no estimate of recent decreases in the ranks of Chinese listed as Catholic communicants.

**These figures are approximations from various sources of missionary literature. No exact figures for the same recent date covering both Protestant and Catholic mission schools are available.

Missionary enterprises, including all philanthropies on a permanent basis. (not counting flood and famine relief and those functioning only in emergencies) comprise one of America's chief stakes in China. Our missionary population there is the majority in our total population of Americans in China. The cost is estimated at $10,000,000 a year in American money to keep this vast network of philanthropies going. We pay most of the cost of education for around half a million Chinese students. This is more than the public school enrollment of many of our American states. According to published figures our annual outlay for philanthropies in China is as much as we spend for public school education in the states of Vermont, Delaware, Wyoming, or New Hampshire. Our contributions exceed those of all other countries combined. Much of this money comes from areas of the United States where education is still backward, notably some of the poorer Southern States, where interest in foreign missions is strangely vehement in the light of their own needs.

But the worth-whileness of philanthropic outlays in China will be examined later. It is well first to look into the general position and outlook of its administrators.

In fairness it should be stated that the missionaries are distinctly in advance, culturally, of any other large American group in China. They are usually better educated, they are more alert to the significant in the world about them (except in matters concerning their calling), and their reverence for abstract values tends to give them a good outlook. Upon the average they are not by any means the provincial fanatics they are commonly supposed to be by prejudiced persons. In fact, a cultured cosmopolitan viewpoint is, if not characteristic, at least very general among them. A considerable number, especially among the Protestants, hold two or three university degrees. This does not mean much in itself, though it refutes the supposition that they lack academic training. Of course, many missionaries have no degrees. I find no statistics available, but I should be inclined to regard this lack as exceptional among the American Protestant missionaries. The Catholic workers appear more commonly to prepare only by special ecclesiastical training, without an equal amount of liberal arts training. In any case, American missionaries collectively seem decidedly superior to average public school and college teachers at home in America. Some of the denominations are conspicuously below others in their standards. The American Board of Foreign Missions, inter-denominational, is conspicuously high in its grade of personnel.

Evidence of creditable scholarship among the missionaries may be found in their large and constant contribution in worth-while books and articles on things Chinese. Missionary writers have delved into the art, history, nature lore and language of China to produce our best sources of information. This fund of knowledge is increased every year by scores of missionaries of acknowledged competence in many non-religious fields. Justification is hard to find on the spot for Pearl Buck's intimations that missionaries are not of a very high type.

A Protestant report for 1933 states that in Protestant institutions of higher learning, forty-three per cent of the teachers hold M. A. degrees, and ten per cent Ph.D., degrees.

Business and governmental groups feel that in a social sense the average of the missionaries are not what is called "easy to entertain." This strikes any observer as a just observation. To business and governmental hostesses, missionaries seem stiff-necked and stern, and perhaps covertly critical. This accounts in part for the fact that the missionaries and non-missionaries do not mix together extensively. Another reason is that the missionaries do not usually permit themselves the diversions upon which a good deal of entertainment in China hinges - dancing, bridge, and cocktails. A number of the more modern ones are not at heart opposed to these things, but they are obliged to take their place in the preestablished routine inaugurated in earlier and sterner days. Individual departures from it would be conspicuous, which is to say disapproved.

So the missionaries have a social life, such as it is, all their own. A nonmissionary visitor may often find it a little strange. There is not among the majority of them the easy urbanity of reception, an atmosphere of unhesitating light-spirited affability, that commonly characterizes the social life of the business and governmental sets. In contrast, the missionaries seem slightly lacking in grace, even if strong in dignity. Their small talk is leadenfooted, their domestic machinery seems to creak more loudly, and in general the modus viviendi announces itself in gawky servants, kitchen rattlings, overheard pantry plans and obtrusive nursery discipline. Their lower incomes preclude much attention to good dress. The majority are indeed not of smart mode and mien, but this lack in no way depreciates their ability in their work.

The more solid virtues are pronounced among the missionaries. Their interests are worth while. Their lives are conservatively decorous. Their conversation is informing. Among missionaries a person interested in the country and the people is likely to find a chance hour vastly more entertaining than elsewhere, for their more intimate experience with the natives and their more thoughtful and reflective interest in Chinese happenings are marked, and as mentioned, the missionaries commonly have a better background of education. But at the same time most missionaries seem to have a blind spot in matters touching upon religion or religious philanthropy. In subject matter in which they can disentangle themselves from what they call their faith, their discriminations are thoughtful and frequently reveal minds of excellent judgment. In everything most of them are convincingly sincere. In a social sense, this warm, unaffecting honesty goes naturally far to redeem what the non-missionaries look upon as a woeful want of easy grace.

In terms of personal characteristics, the non-missionaries in China will assure you everywhere that you can tell a missionary a mile off. "It's by the look in their faces," they say. "Don't you notice that they all look popeyed?" As a matter of fact, there is a typical "missionary look." The stewards on the out-going trans-Pacific steamers spot it instantly, and thereupon mentally deduct fifty per cent from a hoped-for table tip. Upon the whole missionaries look unhappy. The faces of the women line sooner, somehow, than those of other women, though the missionaries live longer and apparently with better health in China than anybody else.

The strain to some of them comes from living long periods in remote posts inland where social life of any sort is wanting. And then even among those who live in communities of better-rounded contacts, there is very little in the way of real relaxation of spirit at any time. When they get together, it is more often than not to sing doleful hymns, and even on such possible occasions of merriment as picnics, one of the few revelries permitted by the abjuring rigors of their lives, they commonly saturate their spirits beforehand with mournful prayers petitioning mercy from a deity who, by their attitude, might be supposed to be meditatively eyeing each one while sharpening his ax or stirring his furnace.

Convictions of a more cheering sort characterize some of the more enlightened missionaries, especially those who have gone out from the United States in recent years. But as was mentioned, these step upon arrival into a routine of nineteenth century evangelism, with all its gory vocabulary and dreary joylessness of code, and the obligations of conformity are stern. Much of what the missionaries call their leisure is gobbled up by requirements of community prayer meetings, songfests and other spiritual rallies. By these their waking hours are pretty well dominated, with a constant emphasis on the blood of the lamb, groping for the light, being tossed on stormy seas, eternal fire, crucifixion, and similarly ominous reminders of the original Nazarene message of Peace and Joy.

That many missionaries in China, shut away from counter-diversions, should have a readily identifiable expression of countenance after a prolonged diet of such spiritual forage is not astonishing. This unnaturalness of emotional concentration shows its strain in the younger women more than among any others. A good many of them have gone out to China primarily to teach in mission schools, in many cases rather adventurously, because on creeping years at home in America disclosed nothing but a dismal monotony of meaninglessness ahead. In any event, it is to be suspected that many of them have not gone out ideally scorched by the inward flame of religious zeal, but once there, have remained because there was nothing to come back to in America. Life for these women is usually easier after middle age sets in, when they have reconciled themselves to their lot. To many, a visitation of inner energy, an increasing enthusiasm for the work they are in, then appears. They have "found their place in life," and this reconcilement is accepted as the final illumination of a tardy faith. But in the intermediate and long period before this occurs, if it does, a large number of the younger missionary women seem more uneasily searching for a faith than following a faith. Few unmarried women missionaries under fifty impress one as carrying on without intense inner strain in China. The able missionary work there is for the most part being done by relatively young men and by relatively old women.

In many cases the missionaries appear to take an ostentatiously righteous pleasure in refusing to mingle with the "community" the non-missionary group-holding aloof with an air of being tempted by the devil, but remaining devil-proof. The wife of one American Consul I knew decided to give a children's party for the foreigners, and naturally invited the children of the missionaries. Objection was met on the grounds that cocktails had at times been served in the Consul's house, and that it was hence no fit place for a children's party. The Consul's wife became indignant, though the notion that she might turn a gathering of ten- and twelve-year-olds into a liquor brawl struck us all as very funny. In such matters, the Catholic missionaries (who of course have no children) appear to maintain a much more generous, human attitude than the Protestants, making better distinctions between prejudice and realities.

At the same time, however, the Catholics exert a discipline over their workers that strikes a bystander as needlessly cruel. I knew one priest who found the life did not agree with his temperament nor with his health, so that at the end of his first three months in the country he was already worn to a frazzle. He wanted to return to America and offered to pay his own way, besides paying his outcoming passage money back to the order under which he worked, and making also a liberal money settlement for all trouble he had caused by the fact that he had failed to fit in. For "disciplinary purposes" he was kept on for months, threatened with excommunication, and reminded that his life belonged to the Church to be used as his superior saw fit, whatever the consequence to himself. He was kept on in dangling uncertainty in this fashion, with a good deal of punishment, until he broke down altogether. True, he was a misfit, but all he asked was to be allowed to remedy his error in the best way he could. Doctors' advice that he was going to pieces meant nothing. When he finally did get off, he was a patient for a sanitarium. That affair, which I followed in observation from start to finish, knowing all participants personally, seemed to me an astounding revelation of medieval torture. It was the more strange because in all ordinary respects, unrelated to religious matters, everybody concerned gave an impression of generous kindness.

It was uncomfortable, in this day and age, to see a strong grown man, a former professional athlete and one who gave otherwise the impression of being what is called a regular fellow, broken down and weeping, helpless, pinioned by invisibilities of terror incomprehensible to those of us born without insight into the manifold workings of Brotherly Love.

To the younger missionary, man or woman, who is not heart and soul in the undertaking, life in China is irksome in the extreme. There is no escape in most of the stations from the round of hymning and praying, ameliorated by little else. The country is too crowded or too dangerous outside even to be alone now and then. Shanghai or some other port with its movies and other permissible virtuous diversions is perhaps hundreds of miles away. Near at hand there is nothing but the unremitting thunder of an Old Testament Jehovah and the eternal sea of yellow native faces.

Insanity is not uncommon. Neurotic deviations of lesser degree are plentiful, and there is pathos in the suspected long loneliness and desolation of heart leading up to them. The victims are those who have not "found God" soon enough in the scheme of things into which they plunged themselves unknowingly when they sailed from San Francisco.

Odd and tragic and sometimes repellent emotional substitutions reveal themselves now and then among women missionaries in China, where capacities of affection left vacant by the absence of homes and families become infected by solaces less natural, and these speeded by the strain of life in general there make swift destructive headway. One woman's college I know in China was nearly broken up by suddenly discovered widespread abnormalities of emotional expression among the American women teachers, and the same problem, needless to say one highly inconsonant with the exemplary Christian Life, is by the sad confidences of educational leaders troublesomely recurrent elsewhere all over China. Its prevalence seems wide in considering the missionary population numerically, leaving the conclusion that the influence of the Chinese must in part explain it, for by all accounts divergence from orthodoxy in such matters is much more common among them than among Occidentals, a condition to be expected among a people vastly older and nearer attenuation.

In general the Protestants and Catholics do not mix much. Certain restrictions, of course, rest upon the Catholic priests in their social relations with non-Catholic foreigners, and then their monastic life tends to seclude them from the social currents of denominations whose intercourse is largely built upon families and the ready mingling of men and women. A fiercer burning piety, or at least a fiercer personal search for it, seems to animate the Catholic orders in China than is evident among the Protestants. More reliance upon mystic communion with the deity is observed in their conversation - a natural condition, for it is reasonable that the more any individual excludes the diversions of the world he lives in the more intensely he must cultivate those related to the world presumably awaiting him ahead.

This self-hypnosis, if it is that, results in mental states that impress an outsider as curiously medieval. I have seen the eyes of more than one priest in China gleam with fervor, his voice excited to a high pitch of poetic adulation, as he talked of sainted predecessors martyred for the Cause there. It could be guessed that not a few today would welcome an end by assassination or torture there in a heathen wilderness, far from civilized men but companioned in spirit by an all-approving Trinity while His wayward children who know not what they do crowd nearer with the fatal ax and the brand - a beautiful, ecstatic dream picture, a sweet vision of final glory. There are a good many nuns in China, commonly devoted to the teaching of small children or girls of adolescent age. One of their conspicuous works has been the buying of girl infants, at prices from twenty-five to fifty cents each, from parents who would otherwise put an end to them by infanticide. As a practical procedure this is puzzling, for it is not contended by the Church that the infants, if drowned or smothered in the routine way, would go to hell, and hence those permitted to die before an age of spiritual consciousness might be expected to escape soul damnation. On the other hand, if rescued and inculcated with the doctrine of salvation, a fair percentage may be expected to stray from conscious virtue and be damned, thus leaving an aggregate of damned souls considerably greater than if they were let alone. As a point in religious consistency, this inference would seem to apply likewise to all Chinese, for as an individual is not damned according to churchly tenets if he has not heard of salvation, the business of informing him, with the sequential risks of his not heeding it, would appear to endanger him with hell where originally he was tolerably safe.

Anyway, thousands of these girl infants in China have been saved from infanticide at a few cents a head by Catholic orders there, and brought up in foundling hospitals and later in children's schools, where in time they are led to accept the usual arrangements for salvation.

A good deal of sectarian rivalry goes on between the Protestants and Catholics, and by this method of purchasing infants - not much practiced by Protestants, as far as I could learn - the Catholics are enabled to count a good many extra scalps for Rome.

The Protestant clergy in China express the view that their Catholic rivals are not nearly as strict as themselves in requirements of the Chinese who are labeled Christian converts. I have no personal knowledge of the extent to which this is true, if it is true at all. One Catholic dignitary who claimed that he spoke upon intimate acquaintance with the higher confidences of his church assured me that the present Vatican policy is in actuality very liberal in expectations of the Chinese, both laity and native clergy, and is soon to become more so. He detailed the pro and con arguments that have transpired between Catholic executives in China and the Vatican over this point in recent years, and finally related what he declared to be the recent attitude of Pope Pius XI in the matter. This decision is that for the future position of the Roman Church in China it is better to gather as many nominal converts as possible now, without scaring them off with such rigid impositions of behavior as might be exacted of communicants in more advanced countries. In 1926 the Pope, with elaborate ceremony, announced a new liberalism in the matter of a native Chinese clergy, providing for large increases in the numbers of Chinese priests, with additional native bishops and other officials. Presumably further extensions are now contemplated. The idea, so my informant explained, is that as many as possible should be tagged as Catholic, taking a chance that eventual improvements in the standards of the country will bring these nominal converts into better alignment with good Catholic living. The unsuccessful opposition to this contention, I was assured, came from Catholic leaders in China who feared for the dignity of the faith under such a policy, arguing for quality and not quantity. Well, that is that for what it may be worth. But it is evident that from the evangelical standpoint the Catholics have a distinct edge theologically on their Protestant rivals through their centralized organization and their unity of doctrine. They are aided in accomplishing more, too, expenditure for expenditure, by the fact that the Roman Church is able to utilize the services of workers who demand no pay above maintenance, who go into the foreign field consecrated, as they say, to live and die there, asking only the privilege of service. In contrast to this, many if not most of the Protestant workers weigh in some degree the pay scale offered for work in China as compared with work back in America or England.

That is, while within limits, large numbers of Protestant missionaries labor in China at a financial sacrifice, it is open to belief upon acquaintance with them that the majority could be weaned over to Henry Ford or General Motors by a really substantial ante over the apostolic frugality on the dotted line. Many of the Catholic workers are recruited from France and Spain, where accustomed living standards of the sisterhoods and the clergy are not high. Workers from such areas may be maintained in China at a standard that American workers would reject. This advantage, plus that of little or no salaries to be paid, enables Catholic money to go farther than Protestant money in saving the heathen.

The Catholics have an advantage, too, in their use of symbols. Ignorant people need something they can look at in concrete form in order to visualize theological conceptions. Chinese heathen keep a small idol or two in the house, not exactly as a religious token, but as something to show that respect is intended for whatever supernatural forces there may be. It is connected with an idea of luck, more than anything else. The unseen world is linked with mythology to the ignorant Chinese, it appears, but to little or no theology. Chinese do not ordinarily appear to associate moral values with either, in the sense that ill-fortune, may follow wrongdoing. The conception appears to be that a poor crop or a sick son represent nothing more than the malice of some devil. If the devil cannot be scared away by drums and firecrackers perhaps he can be prayed away. In dealing with their gods, as with their fellow-men, the Chinese like to employ, often simultaneously, both intimidation and righteous persuasion. And they regard their gods as beings as cruelly whimsical as their military oppressors, from whom flow misfortunes without provocation, and calamities without cause. The household idols, cheap, crude wood and cloth and paper affairs costing a cent or two, are utilized on the chance that

there might be something in their effectiveness, the way ignorant people in America, half dubious, will carry a rabbit's foot or a buckeye. But in any event the Chinese are used to something they can look at. If the Protestants would take this hint, and patent or copyright some sort of token - a distinctive amulet, pendant or wall image, symbolic and suggestive of their teachings, they could certainly compete more favorably with their Catholic rivals. It would not need to be expensive. The Chinese, unlike the Hindus, spend little money on idols and icons.

In visible influence; as a force in the affairs of China, the Protestants have an advantage. Their greater concentration on social service is distinct. Their imposing spic and span new dormitories, laboratories, library buildings and hospitals meet the visitors' eye everywhere. The Chinese, who borrow from things offered under the auspices of religion while leaving the religion behind, are thus naturally more impressed by what the Protestants have to show. Also, many of the books on social philosophy in which the educated Chinese profess interest are interdicted by the Vatican.

I think it may be advanced as a correct distinction that the Protestants are more and more relaxing their emphasis upon the acceptance of what they offer spiritually, provided the Chinese take to heart what they offer in the way of sociological improvements, while the Catholics stick almost as closely as ever to an insistence upon religious conversion. Aiming thus, the Catholics go after the small children vigorously, while the Protestants hope to obtain influence through the training of mature Chinese leaders in higher education.

According to the Committee of Reference and Counsel of Foreign Missions Conference of North America (1922), Catholic missions in China at that time numbered 6,000, with an enrollment of 144,000 students. A total Catholic Church membership was listed of nearly 2,000,000. Thus according to these figures less than eight per cent of the Catholic church enrollment is composed of students. On the Protestant side, the number of converts enrolled as students was given as 200,000 out of a total Protestant church membership of 375,000 - the students thus composing more than fifty per cent of the number of converts. An equally striking difference was in the number of Protestant students in attendance at institutions of college or university grade, these totaling about twice as many as in Catholic institutions of higher learning, though the Protestant population is only onesixth as great.

There were at that time some 1,200 foreign teachers in the Protestant mission schools in China, and 11,000 Chinese teachers employed in them. In 1922, Protestant and Catholic mission schools together were educating about one-fifteenth of all the persons receiving an education in China. The fraction may be estimated as much higher today, since the mission schools have greatly expanded their facilities, while the wretched native Chinese schools, for which no reliable figures are available, are known to have slumped badly, with operations in a chaos of political meddling, unpaid teachers and hopelessly poor equipment.

Recent figures indicate a Protestant school enrollment of 290,000, as cited earlier in this chapter. Reference has been made to the drop of 50,000 in Protestant church membership in recent months, leaving an estimated 350,000 total of Chinese Protestants. Thus Protestants maintain educational facilities for about three-fourths as many Chinese as are listed in the total Protestant classification at this time.

In the 1933 report of Father Paschal M. D'Elia for the Catholic Missions in China, we are given the following figures on Catholic educational efforts for the Chinese: As of 1930, there were 314 Catholic high schools. The enrollment for that year shows 6,056 boys professing Catholicism and 4,333 non-Catholic. Among the girls of the same year in Catholic high schools, 3,396 were listed as Catholic and 4,451 as non-Catholic. In the same year, in the three principal Catholic institutions of higher learning, out of 1,384 men enrolled 1,075 were non-Catholic. The inference is that practically all those listed as non-Catholic were not professing Christians. These figures indicate a generous hospitality among the mission schools toward non-Christian students. In "Catechetical Schools" this Catholic writer listed 162,485 as the total of boys and girls enrolled. No explanation is made of the apparent decrease compared with figures published several years ago.

One of the many surprises in China is that in large numbers of American-supported mission schools and colleges many of the Chinese students make no profession of Christianity at all. They merely avail themselves of the opportunity for a good education at little cost. In mission schools and universities of which I have personal knowledge the percentage of Christians runs as low as a fourth of the total student enrollment. The missionary answer to this is that our philanthropy in China is there in part for a social service, and no appearance of narrow-mindedness (insistence on the students accepting Christianity) can be permitted to block its widest usefulness. This impresses an impartial spectator as certainly very generous. As a criticism, perhaps the missionaries in the interests of honesty should make their attitude as clear in America as it is on the spot. For in reading missionary literature in the United States, being shown photographs of mission school bodies and soon, the solicited supporter of such projects is led to believe that the pictured students are Christian converts, with more converts forthcoming if he will assist with a few dollars. The missionaries are evidently guilty of a conscious deception in this particular. The average foreign missions dime or quarter dropped in the Sunday School plate in America is certainly dropped upon the assurance that it is to put Christ in some heathen soul, instead of putting better ears on his corn or a better hog in his pen, or more algebra in non-Christian heads.

A considerable number of the Chinese teachers employed by the Protestant mission schools are not Christian, though persons in America think their dimes and quarters and dollars are being used to place heathen students under Christian influences. In 1928, according to Doctor Miao in the China Year Book, twenty-six per cent of the teachers in the Protestant mission high schools (called Middle Schools in China) were non-Christian. Doctor Miao is General Secretary of the China Christian Educational Association. He reported for 1928, also, that only 15.4 percent of the boys and forty-three per cent of the girls in Protestant Middle Schools were Chris- tian. No figures up to date are available, but from isolated missionary reports it would appear that the above percentages of Christian and non-Christian

Ways That Are Dark 162 students in the Protestant institutions has not appreciably altered. Evidently the number of students in Christian mission schools as a whole is decreasing, though mainly in the lower grades. Current Protestant literature gives "limited religious freedom" as the cause. The Chinese officials dictate the courses of study, and exclude Christianity. Tens of thousands of Chinese students annually extract all they can get from the mission schools, and after graduation, without ever having exhibited the slightest interest in Christianity, go about getting a job in business, the government or an allied racket, banditry, or whatever looks most promising. That is natural enough, but that they should be anti-foreign after having been beneficiaries of so much is typically Chinese.

It should be said that a few missionary projects in China are of the social service class through and through and honestly solicit support on that avowal. Many such notable institutions as Yali (Yale in China) are in the field to place the best in general education within reach of as many Chinese as possible. The belief is that the graduates of these schools, indoctrinated with the best the West can contribute in enlightened social philosophy and science, will be of value to a race and a country allegedly suffering from lack of enlightenment.

It is a common notion in America that missionaries live on, an elaborate scale in China, in a state of luxury that their abilities would not command in the United States. This is certainly not borne out by observation: on the scene. True they have servants in China where corresponding incomes would not enable them to have servants here. But that is an insignificant item. A servant, or preferably two or three servants, is almost unavoidable by the standards of the country, which preclude persons of certain classes doing anything resembling menial work. A missionary cannot explain his notions of democracy to a whole city, and to buck the customs locally would not improve his opportunities of usefulness. Furthermore, human labor is dirt cheap in China. Even a whole drove of servants costs little. Of the kind of slovenly, torpid servants missionaries usually have, a combination cook and maid can be had for about three or four dollars a month, American money, at the usual exchange, and with two or three missionaries bunching together on the arrangement, the cost to each is insignificant.

Missionary pay is low. British girls come out to China for as little as twenty dollars a month and expenses. American women, teachers of experience in the United States, holders of one or more degrees, often get no more than fifty or sixty dollars a month, and out of this are expected to maintain themselves. Financial bulletins issued by the various denominations indicate that $3,000 a year is considered an unusually large salary, and is paid only to a supervising executive of importance. I doubt that more than a few of the 1,200 regular teachers and preachers, including many men holding degrees from leading American universities, get over $125 a month, upon which they are expected to support families. The highest salaries I see listed in figures of the various denominations are $7,200 per year each for Robert E. Speer and Cleland B. McAfee, topnotchers in the Presbyterian effort, and this applies to their supervisory work for missions all over the world, with headquarters in New York. I am unable to obtain a statement of salary disbursements in the lower ranks, but from personal knowledge of the income of various missionary acquaintances I know that their remuneration is meager.

"Native workers," that is Chinese who have graduated from one of the foreign colleges or universities in China, are seldom able to do better than twenty-five dollars a month Mexican, which amounts to five or six dollars a month American money at recent exchange. On this they must keep themselves.

Mention of salaries in China requires explanation of living costs. A Chinese of middle class in 'professional status can eke out an existence on borderline respectability for twenty-five dollars a month Mexican, but that means privations scarcely comprehensible in America. Chinese board is possible for six dollars Mexican a month - about $1.25-$1.50 in American money during 1932. But Chinese who have caught the fancy for foreign things find this hard going. It is the approximate charge set for student board at most of the mission schools. Many wants - toilet articles, books, desk appliances, stationery, typewriters - are as high as or higher than in America. Foreign style shoes are equally high, and foreign style clothing is only slightly less costly than in America. For Americans, Chinese market prices, I should estimate, are not more than a third what they are here in local produce. But an American is likely to find an all-Chinese grocery menu tiresome, and want a few imported things. These are much higher than in America, perhaps on an average twice as high. Cooking fats, flour and rice sell at import prices, and of course, all canned goods do. But rents are a big saving. Not including Shanghai, a good house built in the foreign style may be rented over most of China for twelve or fifteen dollars a month, American money.

One Chinese girl, born in America and hence of American citizenship, caused a considerable rumpus in one of the mission schools in Foochow last year because she complained she could not live on the salary she had agreed to come out to China for - $100 Mexican a month. She could not eat the Chinese food; she said, and had to spend all her salary for something palatable. She claimed - she had been deceived in the matter of living costs. The mission heads countered that she had concealed from them the fact that she was a cripple, a fact militating against her usefulness because the native Chinese have a superstitious dread of maimed or crippled persons. They said she could not safely venture far inland, as among the oldfashioned Chinese a crippled or deformed person's life may be actually in danger. The row was settled when the school agreed to give her free transportation back to Seattle, both parties the wiser.

I am told that Chinese-Americans - that is persons of Chinese race born in the United States - in mission work in China are commonly misfits, unable to adjust themselves to the life of their race, and arousing antagonism among the natives by the impression of superciliousness.

American missionaries are supposed to get a year off, with expenses home and back, every seven years. Hard times have cut down this furlough provision. Serious slashes in pay have added troubles to the missionary corps since 1930. A good many have been dropped, and replacements have in numerous instances not been made in ranks thinned by death and illness.

The general policy (Up to 1930) has been one of expansion in mission enterprises in China, keeping salaries as low as possible and using increasing funds for extensions of school facilities.

To all this work the wealthy Chinese in China contribute infinitesimally little, and in most cases nothing. In a country that owes its modern enlightenment, and in a sense its very existence, to mission work, this cool aloofness on the part of innumerable Chinese millionaires is striking, though not surprising.

They might reasonably be excused from contributing to the spread of an alien religion with which they have no sympathy, but the many leading medical schools and other social service projects founded by missionaries have long since lost their primarily religious character, and are today, and have for years been, outright altruistic endeavors of utilitarian value, with no strings of theology attached. Nearly all the medical nurses in China, numbering around 2,500, are products of Christian mission training. The same is true in an approximate extent of most other professions of foremost immediate and potential benefit to the country. China's debt to the missions, from the standpoint of acquiring the coveted Western enlightenment, is in strange contrast to an official policy of "down with the foreigners" and "down with the missionaries," expressed in governmentally permitted or connived-at lootings, attempted extortions and murders.

In the above paragraph, I used the word "existence" in speaking of China's indebtedness to the missionaries. Anyone who will go over carefully the principal historical events of the nineteenth century in China may find that the sentiment bred by American and British missionaries among their respective populations at home engendered a sympathy for the Chinese that probably was the force saving China from political dismemberment by European powers. It is not argued pro or con that this sympathy was in the long run a good thing for the Chinese. They might be vastly better off under other flags than their own, a supposition with the overwhelming negative support, at least, that they could not be any worse off. But this indebtedness to the missionaries is in striking contrast to the Chinese hostility to them. The foremost anti-missionary agitators in China are the very ones clamoring with effusive self-proclaimed patriotism for a politically sovereign and unified China, an aim in which the missionaries have obviously been their best allies.

Resentment against missionaries certainly does not spring from religious intolerance. The Chinese are without doubt the most tolerant people under the sun in matters of religion, because of all peoples they are the least religious. They are the one large group of the world's population, in fact the only group large or small, that ever advanced equally far in civilization without any show of religious fervor whatever. Missionaries have been and are resented, but apparently not for reasons of religious hostility.

A little examination of Chinese ideas of religion reveals much that is significant. To begin, their sages have reverenced Confucius conspicuously, but not in the sense of religious adoration. The feeling was philosophic accolade and an avowed obligation of emulation. The common people know only vaguely of Confucianism and Buddhism and Taoism, terms which among them are mere misnomer identifications of misty superstitions and propitiatory rites, having little or no connection with tenets of organized religious cults. If you ask the average illiterate Chinese what religion he belongs to or believes in, he will not comprehend the question. The Mohammedan minority among them is slightly more definite in allegiance, but even the elsewhere militant Mohammedanism died out into a tepid meaninglessness of name when it fell upon Chinese spiritual sterility. There is not among the Chinese anything akin to the religious sense as it prevails in India, the Semitic world, among Negroes, Latins, or Southerners of the United States. The priestcraft of China has lacked the pedagogic urge, and nothing in the way of instruction appears to have been done for those, the majority, unable to read the analects and aphorisms of the ancient scholars. The run-of-the-mill Chinese was never molested by the priest, and the temples were and are used almost wholly for propitiatory offerings in times of distress, or for good luck on the birthday of a son or some such felicitous occasion. The rest of the time, so long as the crops are good and the fish bite, the average Chinese desires no more intercourse with the Lord than with the sheriff or doctor or pawnbroker, recourse to all being emergency developments.

From early times a sort of urbane Voltaire-like cynicism has characterized the educated native Chinese. The favorite proverb Pou toun kiao toun li - "religions are many, reason is one," expresses their indifference.* Through the centuries the Chinese philosophers have poked fun at credulous fellow-countrymen, especially at those disposed to attach much meaning to words of supplication addressed to an unseen deity. "Suppose," wrote one imperial commentator at the instigation of the emperor, "you had violated the laws in some way, and that you were taken into the judgment hall to be punished. Do you think, if you went on bawling a thousand times over 'Your Excellency! Your Excellency!', the magistrate would be more likely to spare you for that?" . Possibly it is unfortunate for the Chinese that Confucius arrived after scholarship and learning had already made fair progress. Had he come upon the scene a few centuries earlier, primitive credulity might have invested his birth and life with the mythology and legend essential to make a religion out of his philosophy. We know that a shroud of mystery and mysticism is necessary to dramatize any worth-while doctrine for popular consumption, and that moral wisdom, however self-evident its value, can never make much headway in the common herd unless it is accredited to divine origin and thus accepted as a religion. But Confucius arrived among a population in which learning, amid the group he addressed, had advanced to where a critical attitude prevailed. In this connection, it is well to remember that each great religion has been founded in a society intermediate between primitive credulity and moderate learning, one in which enough learning prevailed to recognize something excellent in a moral sense, but in which not so much learning had been attained that all ready credulity in supernatural agency was gone. Hence the tardy advent of Confucius assured him contemporary veneration as a philosopher, but denied him posthumous glory as the divine founder of a great religion.

*This is not a favorite Chinese proverb, as it does not exist, and appears to be the invention of Evariste Huc in his book Empire chinois ed 5 vol 2.djvu/247, 1854, “Pou-Toun-Kiao-Toun-Li. —— Les religions sont diverses, la raison est une..." (不同教同理). Although the phrase (or anything like it) isn't used in China, the idea that all religions try to teach the same thing is very common, and oddly, "many religions teach the same truths" would be a correct translation of Huc's invented phrase. The way he (and Townsend) seem to want to use it, then mistranslate it, is to say that reason trumps religion, and an idiom or proverb with such a meaning, to my knowledge, does not exist in the Chinese language -Ed.

And yet to say that the Chinese would have been better off with a religion is a conjecture, because the chances are that they would have perverted it in their mass ignorance into all kinds of abominations. We see that in neighboring India, where Buddhism landed in a society intellectually far behind the Chinese and thus readily became a religion, an originally creditable doctrine was so elaborated with mystic embellishments that its usefulness was largely destroyed, leaving India perhaps worse off with a superabundance of religion than China with none. Such a possibility as that of Confucianism becoming a true religion, however, is merely a field for surmise, because we cannot accurately measure the racial receptivities prevailing as against the accidents of time and environment. The Chinese impress one as utterly lacking in emotional responsiveness to religious things, and perhaps that racial trait would have doomed Confucius to remain a philosopher and not the founder of a religion, regardless of when he was born. In any event, we may ponder the proposition that if the Chinese were too old and skeptical to formulate a religion 2,500 years ago, they are not likely to be more spiritually susceptible to a new one at this time. Theology and ethics are in practically no sense related in Chinese conceptions. In certain respects that is perhaps in their favor, for their deplorable ethics get them into trouble enough, and if they wrangled over notions of theology in addition, the chaos would be beyond imagination. And at least the separation of religion and ethics, as a spectacle, is in favorable contrast to the situation in parts of the world where constant inbreeding of the two has produced monstrosities of both.

Religiously, as in other respects, the typical Chinese mentality represents the human maximum of broad-mindedness. It is striking to a newcomer in China to learn that a Chinese does not care what an acquaintance thinks or does, so long as it does not unfavorably affect him. Acquaintances may be thieves, pickpockets and what not, so long as they do not rob him. Varied religious ideas are if possible of even less concern. The inferential advantage of this indifference is that such corrupt ideas as the Chinese have may supposedly be the more easily dislodged, because they do not adhere to any set and persisting dogma. As a disadvantage, conjecturally, it will be very difficult to implant any improving sense of values in his head, because there is nothing in that spiritual vacuum to which such a sense of values might be attached. In religious negativity, the Chinese are an amazing contrast to their neighbors the Tibetians, the Japanese and the Hindus.

This calls to mind the familiar lesson of history that the ignorant multitude will never behave themselves from a regard to duty to fellow men, but must be coerced in the matter either by swift and sure physical punishment in life or by indoctrination with the idea that an all-seeing deity will handle offenders in the world to come. Most governments have relied upon the double effectiveness of the two combined, but the Chinese dynasties of the past singularly omitted recourse to spiritual suasion, and placed their reliance upon a terribly formidable penal code. Possibly the unconquerable Chinese apathy to all spiritual ideas necessitated this exclusive reliance upon earthly physical punishment - no one may say with certainty. The missionaries believe, and perhaps rightly so, that the Chinese could be more easily governed if they were better spiritualized. But the catch is that they have shown themselves immune to spiritual influences. It is like putting salt on the bird's tail.

It seems an unalterable racial characteristic - this emotional immunity of Chinese to spiritual conceptions of any kind, and to theological conceptions of Christianity in particular.

But what does the educated, well-wishing and open-minded Chinese think Christianity offers his people?

What we are accustomed to call Christianity has linked with it a great deal that is a Western ideology of values, material and otherwise, but strictly speaking not religious. The spring of thought rising in Bethlehem has accumulated the chips and sediment of many differing racial forces and changing centuries through which it has passed upon its long westward journey to us. Many of these accumulated features of our creed are in the eyes of thinking Chinese not visible outgrowths of the theological narrative presented by the missionaries.

The educated Chinese, of course, knows that we ascribe our material accomplishments to the stimulus of our religion. But against that he is asked to reconcile bits of background that fit with difficulty into such a thesis. He observes historically that the church fought science for centuries with intimidation and execution, accepting science only when it could no longer resist it. Our science is the thing that impresses China. Reviewing Christianity further through the centuries, he finds its repeated metamorphoses so divergent that to find any single message meeting his interests is baffling. From a consolatory religion of slaves and refugees sanctifying poverty he finds it shortly afterwards the justifying assurance of pompous tyrannical kings and popes reveling in splendor and privileged oppression: something ever changing according to its foremost interpreters from age to age, sometimes enslaving millions, sometimes waging bloody wars to free slaves, sometimes renouncing force, sometimes maniacally searching out untold thousands of unoffending persons with torch and bastinado, now burning witches, now raising funds for free treatment of persons afflicted, its original message of peace and good will ever pursued and spread with fire and sword, its assured spiritual serenity inciting individuals and mobs to the maddest agonies of fury and slaughter.

Our informed Chinese may reflect that less than forty years ago Christendom was appalled when Robert G. Ingersoll pleaded with eloquence, discussing the Master's message of Love and Comfort: "Do not proclaim as 'tidings of great joy' that an Infinite Spider is weaving webs to catch the souls of men." Christianity has changed a great deal since then. Men by and large refused to accept the notion of a yawning hell, so the ministers of Christianity soft-pedaled its emphasis upon hell. Ingersoll's plea could be uttered by any prominent metropolitan preacher today without getting into the headlines or causing a second thought to folks coming out of church headed for Sunday dinner. Christianity has always been changing.

During the first two centuries, a Chinese might remind you, it plead for an inoffensive humility - a doctrine well suited to shackled slaves and indentured peasants. But in spreading, as it rose into higher social strata, Christianity infected militant men used to conflict and battle. The humility provision did not fit into the life stream of races competent for conquest. So wars became labeled with religious slogans, and Christianity itself became militant. It has come down to us voiced in such affairs as the Battle Hymn of the Republic and Onward Christian Soldiers. Climates and races have ever made their modifications, and the clergy have ever made their compromises of accommodation. Protestantism is not in Tennessee what it is in Vermont, and Catholicism is not in Montreal what it is in Rio de Janeiro. The vulgar imagination could not grasp Christianity as abstractions of principle, and so it was personalized with saints and symbolized with the cross and the rosary to give it visibility. Not only do the tenets of Christianity change - from century to century they actually conflict. What Ingersoll saw as the Infinite Spider may well appear to the historically informed Chinese as but a temporary guise of the eternal chameleon.

Christianity's part in our progress is thus perplexing to the Chinese who may combine a knowledge of Western history with his innate cool skepticism. Remote from the racial instinct of its fervor, himself racially alien to its spirit, he sees Christianity not as we think of it but in all the inconsistent entirety of its historical span. He finds grounds to suspect that what we term Christianity is not to be accounted for altogether in terms of its theology, but is merely the pen name for our ever-varying structure of standards, confluently evolved from many sources, something persistently appealed to by Occidentals in dealing with one another, the while providing a flattering caption for our whole general system.

As recently as the World War, it may be noted, we provided him the odd spectacle of millions on each side, each theologically confident, praying for each other's annihilation. In 1933, the Chinese may read, Christianity in Germany is adding an "Aryan" plank to its eternally adjustable platform. He finds also about as many definitions of Christianity as there are speakers and writers on the subject, with deviations of creed as wide within the ranks of Christianity as between Christianity and other faiths. He may observe such broad divergences as between the Doukhobors, who like to parade nude, and some adherents of Roman Catholic sects, to whom the naked human body is itself a sin - with flat-earth Zionists, Christian Scientists, House of David longhairs, wash-foot Baptists, shouting Methodists and silent Quakers thrown in for variety. He may reflect that if there is no speech nor language where the voice of the Christian God is not heard, certainly there is none in which it is not disputed and wrangled over. He is assured by all that the essentials of our gospel are simple, but everywhere he gets a different version as to what this simplicity comprises. Each seems determined to out-impassion the other in proclaiming the true spirit of the Christian Message, but with such differences that the holy writ may be used alike in community chest drives and for lynching Negroes. Of course, to our Occidental regard there is within it all, though its history is a gory trail of split hairs and cracked heads, some conforming principle, some; indefinable emphasis of upward obligation, that gives it a strength in human affairs beyond anything a Chinese himself knows. But this view is not as immediately convincing to a Chinese as might be expected. Our religion is borne upon our racial spirit, much of it alien and some of it inimical to Chinese temperament, with deep-fixed differences that cannot perhaps be named, but which are not the less divisions for that reason.

The observing Chinese, then, may not conclude that our theology is something urgently needed for himself. He may further reflect that if Christianity is denuded of its theology and reduced to principles of dealing, he already has among his own people (though unused) a system of principles practically identical in Confucianism and Taoism. In fact, not many churchgoers in America could tell the difference if selected doctrines of Jesus Christ and Confucius were read aloud to them. The Chinese and ourselves have received substantially the same kind of moral emphasis from our foremost teachers. That Western countries have gone forward to a superior standard of life cannot be ascribed, without much presumption, to differences between our moral preceptors, because those differences are insignificant. There is more evidence to conclude that the Chinese have lagged in achieving a spirit of fellow-dealing equal to our own because of their indifference to any emotional moral force whatsoever, and would be right where they are if Bethlehem had been in China and the Last Supper eaten with chop sticks. Of course geography assists in accounting for differences, too. But as to doctrines, the name is not nearly as important as its practice, and our observer may well reason that Confucianism even half practiced would do very well for the Chinese, at least as well as Christianity nine-tenths bungled. The proposition is that the Chinese are not disposed to practice either.

Our missionaries in China readily admit that there would be no discernible difference between a Chinese who was a thorough practitioner of Confucianism and one a thorough practitioner of Christianity. Hence when a Chinese is animated by missionary efforts to give a better account of himself in daily life, he is induced to assume a moral outlook that is called Christian only because that is the adjective applied to his inductors. Chinese keep this in mind, and they do not look upon the name Christianity as implying essentials not available under other labels.

The foregoing synopsis of the educated Chinese intellectual reaction to our religion is included here to suggest why Chinese patriots of the educated classes do not leap forward to encourage our missionaries in the redemption of their people. Of course, in actuality few of them go through the steps of consideration detailed here. But this, as well as I can gather, is what they feel in a general way. The number bothering their heads about the matter at all is microscopic.

But it is worth emphasizing that the Chinese do not appear to resent Christianity in any way as a religion. They are not sufficiently devoted to any spiritual credo to mind the theology of another. Everyone of them readily admits its virtues as a code of behavior. They not only admit it - they will in ordinary conversation express profound admiration for it. But that is the end of the matter. They are the most accommodating people in the world - conversationally - and then they go their devious ways with the subject tranquilly dismissed from mind.

The missionary's stone wall is not opposition but apathy. It is not Chinese nature in abstract matters to refute - it is his nature to ignore. Nothing has been devised that will penetrate this insulating calm of indifference, this dead air space around the Chinese soul, with the bite of a motivating spiritual idea. To date unnumbered thousands have given the task their lives, and on the great yellow face of China they have not roused the bat of an eyelash in interest.

We see throughout the Western world today that the spirit of the ages is against the advance of religion. The momentum of the ages is against it in China.

Our two life streams do not merge. They do not even flow in parallel directions. That ingredients of our own would help the Chinese is hardly open to doubt. That the Chinese can absorb them or care to absorb them is a proposition contrary to abundant evidence. They can utilize some or all of our concrete achievements. But these are not the things of file inner current where emotions, definable and undefinable, make us what we are, and cause us to make acceptance or rejections of moral values. History provides no example of one race taking over the inner spirit of another as its own. We have believed that in the case of the Chinese we could establish an exception. But this confidence is itself an expression of our racial spirit, a spirit of triumphant aggressiveness in conquering material obstacles. Through the missionaries we direct it against obstacles of another sort. We are attempting to penetrate an alien spirit in the manner in which as pioneers we penetrated the American forests. But it might be remembered that while we successfully penetrated the forests, our missionary efforts of many generations failed to penetrate the soul of the American Indians dwelling therein. They bought our beads and our guns and our rum, but to the story of the Sermon on the Mount and the infant in the manger they merely grunted, and allowed, that they were good.

Cool observation in China today indicates that when the Chinese have had their fill of our automobiles, our airplanes, and our telephones, and wear mail order suits, they will politely sip their tea or perhaps coca-cola - and fan themselves, smilingly, to admit that our religion is "velly good talkee."


THE mournful ritual of Christian worship used by the missionaries is not in their favor in their efforts to attract the Chinese. Where in America this mournfulness drives people away from churches, in China among a people even more critically appraising it naturally fails to win people to them. A Chinese is temperamentally one of the most cheerful persons in the world. Given the most modest respite from acute woe, he likes to expand his sunny disposition in the best the moment provides. He does not feel that exposing troubles is a manner of repairing them. He prefers to forget them altogether. But once harpooned by the missionaries, he finds his leisure, dear to him, demanded for attendance at doleful meetings that resound with prayers about being unworthy and heavy-laden, and hymns dealing with shades of night, pulling for the metaphorical shore, life's dreary path, worlds of woe, lost in the gloom and similar misadventures of the faithful. The testimonials and say-a-few-words contributions are little if any happier in key. In their creed of spiritual escape from agony, the missionaries seem unaware of how much of that agony they manufacture in their own imagination in order to have some from which to escape, but the quantity powerfully impresses a bystander.

The average Chinese may be shot at, starved, plundered and everything else, but he is emphatically not introspectively conscious of himself in the Hindu and Christian sense as a sore-footed pilgrim needing spiritual linament. In the missionary meetings the intermissions from the prayers and hymns are occupied in telling one another how joyful they are, and voicing commiseration for those obdurates not sharing their bliss. The latter are likely to be visualized by the attending Chinese as at that moment amiably chatting over a little pork and rice in front of Wu Tom's or Ling Su's shop, unperplexed by salvation - and ten to one he wishes he were with them. It is surprising how quickly alert and temperamentally cheerful American workers become skilled in going through with all this. More than once in China I accompanied missionaries as a guest to their rallies, and while en route they would be as entertainingly lively and bright as could be desired; once arrived within organ-peal of their rendezvous with the Trinity a mask of gloomy piousness would drop over them. Their public remarks then took on the tone of a gasping, sinful, self-condemning supplicant, wailing with ostentatious humility and archaic vocabulary for a crumb of mercy. The suddenness of this was invariably startling, for up to the moment I could observe no evidence of felony, no hang-dog look of guilt, nor had I felt a suspicion that my friend's back was cracking from an invisible weight of troubles dumped there punitively by a heavenly Scotland Yard that had nailed him in some heinousness of which he himself had known nothing. I could infer that each participant was approved according to his technique of realism in this Job-in-sackcloth act. Critical rating seemed especially dependent upon mastery of the unique intonation and language required, which was as specialized as that of lawyers or seamen, but with a more plaintive delivery. The public remarks embraced random references to such oddities as fiery furnaces, burning bushes, lions in the path, and beasts even more formidable of unknown identity. By the look of the fellowworshipers, these curiosities of flora and fauna were calculated to enforce repentance.

Emerging from this ordeal, this- "communion of fellowship" they called it, my missionary friend's face would again brighten, and we would talk of the birds, the weather or what not, with a transition as smoothly sudden as where we had left off, and with my friend (I use the singular for many such acquaintances and occurrences) elaborating in matter-of-fact tones, with unquestionable secular common sense, about his projects for assisting the Chinese. I could only gather that this funereal seance we had been through, this lamentable degradation of a fine force, was simply a custom with which my friend was obliged to comply. I gathered that thousands of others, equally intelligent and practical, adhered to it as a matter of routine, and perhaps in time, from habit, themselves assisting to perpetuate it upon others, and eventually coming to think and speak of such a curious masochistic exhibition of false despair as "an hour of joyful fellowship with God."

However that may be, certainly this play-acting by physically well and otherwise normal men and women, turning any stray chair or bench into an Israelite wailing wall, is the last thing on earth to appeal to a Chinese. The assorted joy of the Message is abundantly drowned out for him in the mournful wails of those inviting him to share its cheer. And whatever talents a Chinese may lack, he is not wanting in experienced composure and heart in meeting adversity. The spectacle of foreigners wailing in grief when he can observe nothing to wail about is indeed not a powerful inducement to accept their creed. He reflects that, as well off materially as they, he would be smiling from ear to ear, and in that he is correct. There is nothing of the martyr in the average Chinese. Neither physically nor mentally will he voluntarily subject himself to discomfort. In fact, he is a genius in avoiding all he can detect in advance. He is the complete spiritual opposite of the Hindoo who for the sake of assumed invisible values will bury himself alive, sit on nails or sleep on briars. None of that for John Chinaman. He wants reward for effort, all the way through, strictly on the doctrine of "no payee, no workee."

The Chinese notice that the missionaries are always poorer financially than the business and government foreigners on the scene. "Missionary man no proper - no buy Number One thing" is a frequently heard observation of semi-contempt among Chinese servants and peddlers dealing with other classes of foreigners. That the missionaries are infinitely wealthier than themselves does not count. They skimp where other foreigners spend freely, and that, in Chinese estimation, means loss of face. And as the Chinese exceed all other peoples, even the Jews, in emphasis upon material values, their esteem for Christianity is not improved by the relative financial inferiority of its messengers.

The average Chinese not only ignores missionary Christianity because of what it fails in his estimate to offer, but to a degree he resists it because of what it imposes. He does not relish the added restrictions of behavior insisted upon by the missionaries. The three stand-by pleasures of the average Chinese are in order of preference gluttony, coition and gossip. Gluttony is for the majority a very rare privilege, but sexuality is somehow available most of the time, and gossip all the time. Christianity does not exactly preclude gluttony, but at the same time it does not exactly improve the prospects for it unless one can land a job around a mission. The second mentioned interlude from misery is scriptually interdicted in its cherished promiscuity, and for the majority that is a woeful infliction. The last, gossip, is not enhanced, and may in fact be curtailed because of the demands upon leisure mentioned and because association with a mission will tend to separate the communicant from familiar acquaintances. It has been facetiously remarked of Christianity that it began as a religion of charity and has wound up as a theory of chastity. However that may be, both are features obnoxious to the average Chinese.

It is little wonder that Chinese are prone to abstain from profession of Christianity unless some strong material inducement is included. At a missionary conference gathering at Kuliang last summer I listened to the statements of missionaries trying to devise ways of getting and holding converts. One woman declared that it was a familiar experience that the only Chinese converts who appeared to take much interest were the ones who had some position connected with the mission. There was general concurrence in this lament. The consensus was that too many Christians were simply "rice Christians" - the name applied to natives who profess faith in order to get something materially from the mission, and drop it as soon as something better comes along, or when detected by their brethren in not living the Christian life.

One of the devices of the missionaries in China is to pay employees for a seven-day week. The employees work only six, but attendance is taken at church on Sunday, and a worker not present is docked a day's pay or two days' pay at the next settlement.

One fact stands out at all missionary conferences: the missionary enthusiasm runs to the present lot of Chinese students as the hope for the future. "Such a splendid group of earnest young men and women," say the missionaries, "such a thrilling force for Christ and China in the next generation." But in looking over back files of missionary literature, I find these exclamations applied ten years ago, twenty years ago, fifty years ago. Each generation of missionaries has been engaged in educating the nucleus of enlightened Christian Chinese who would be the transforming power later on. But the reforming nucleus has not yet appeared. I gathered, however, that the students now in the mission schools are finally it, the long-awaited, splendid regenerative force, the earnest militants who will turn the trick. I have not heard the missionary account of what became of the earnest ones who inspired the tons of gushingly enthusiastic pamphlets about them in the half dozen decades gone by. These thousands of pamphlets extolling them may be found stored away, yellowed with age, in public libraries and missionary buildings all over American and England. Their language is indistinguishable from that used at present regarding the new crop. A very few out of those hundreds of thousands educated in the past have given a good account of themselves. The names of an impressive number may be found in the American Consulates all over China where data on military opportunists and other racketeers are collected and filed.

A typical example of the ever-surging missionary enthusiasm for the "promise" of this or that Chinese is the case of the distinguished Reverend George Hsu-chien. George made his start in life by acting as secretary of Sun Yat-sen, but the accolade of the missionaries was for his immense success as a Christian evangelist. One of the ablest native conductors of revival meetings in China, he thrilled foreign co-workers through and through with his power to sway the multitude heavenwards. But by and by the Kuomintang, noting his oratory, made him a more attractive offer. The Reverend George at once heeded this call to a wider field, and proceeded to organize at Hankow an anti-Christian week, to be in effect through Christmas of 1926. The slogans were:

Close or take over all Christian schools. Urge students to leave Christian schools. Organize students for anti-Christian work during vacation. Disrupt Christian organizations from within. Forbid participation of Christian students in national affairs.

Under the incitement of his anti-foreign efforts, Chinese mobs roamed the streets and beat foreigners, and most of the foreign population had to be evacuated down river to Shanghai for safety.

General Feng Yu-hsiang is another prominent Chinese who a few years ago pleased the missionaries a great deal with his alleged Christianity. He is the one who felt its blessings so powerfully that he baptized his army wholesale by marching the troops past a splashing fire hose. But the last year or two Feng's racketeering and nefarious double-dealing with the Chinese and Japanese, squeezing what he could out of both, have taken so much time he has had little left for holy works, obliging the missionaries to seize upon new enthusiasms elsewhere.

The names of Chinese Christians of "promise" who have in an opportune moment turned renegade after being long a power for the Cross would make a list as long as a small city telephone directory.

"It is our challenge," say the missionaries. "We must look upon disappointments as a renewed obligation to go on-to persevere for the Kingdom."

Again a non-missionary foreigner is reminded that when you hear of a Chinese being enthusiastically hailed, it is for his promise, seldom for his tested delivery of the goods. If you are old enough, check the Chinese students you knew in college or university ten years ago or twenty years ago, particularly those whom professors lauded as "brilliantly promising" and see what became of them. Collectively, the answer is found in the destitution of China today in the matter of forceful and at the same time honorable men, a condition striking in view of the relatively large numbers that have gone abroad, the pick of the country, for decade after decade, all with exceptional opportunities. First rate men are not numerous anywhere, but it is to be remembered that the life of returned educated Chinese is centered in a few cities, where there is excellent opportunity for ability in leadership to make itself seen, even allowing that the conditions of the country are against its making itself felt. A foreigner in one of these cities soon meets or learns about the Chinese with any claim to merit, because they are so scarce the field is soon covered.

"All that may be true," answer the missionaries in substance, "but it is cynical and un-Christian to look at the matter in such a light." Reminders of reality are no more popular among missionaries than suntan lotion in Harlem.

If the missionary perseverance is astonishing, some of the circumstances of it are more so. It is not generally known in America that since 1927 the missionaries have rested under an injunction of the Nationalist Government, to which they meekly acquiesced, whereby they are not to teach Christianity in the lower schools, and may teach it only as an elective subject, requested by the student, in institutions of college grade. Thousands of schools are thus financed in America by appeals to people to hand over money to propagate Christianity in China. The money comes, in part, from tenant farmers, cotton mill children and the humble poor of the industrial cities, in the shape of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters, hard-earned and earnestly given in answer to the pleas of Sunday School workers who believe that their money will count precisely in its announced direction. Very definitely it does not. There is more yet: Every mission school and college in China is now obliged to have installed at its own expense (which means American philanthropy in our case) a Chinese principal or president. This edict came with the Nationalists in 1927. It ousted scores of American heads of philanthropic educational enterprises and replaced them with Chinese political party-approved substitutes. Even hospital facilities were turned over in many cases to the Chinese, to be mismanaged in the usual Chinese way. Our missionaries in China who teach do so today under Chinese authorities who, unasked to the jobs, are paid by American money.

(You will not find this revelation in the mission literature you get with a subscription blank for a contribution.)

There is more yet. In 1928 the Nationalists went further, evidently elated by their previous triumph contravening without resistance the Treaty of 1868, whereby religious freedom was guaranteed to the mission schools; they ordered that the mission schools should teach "party principles," meaning the doctrine of the Kuomintang, which is the present political party in power in China - a sort of conglomerate anti-foreignism and bastard offshoot of Communism (which by name it repudiates) and varied political gibberish hard to classify. This manifesto is the equivalent of the President of the United States suddenly ordering all schools to propagandize the Democratic or the Republican Party - only the Kuomintang is a much more vicious and radically destructive force than anything we have in America. It is worse than the Ku Klux Klan at its most degenerate stage. A closer though still unapproximating analogy would be the ordering by Tammany Hall of a pro-Curry and pro-O'Brien campaign in the public and private schools of New York City. But the missionaries took this order meekly, and finally resolved it as usual into an acceptable - and even privileged test of their continued earnest faith and long-suffering. They could still pray to Jehovah on Zion, but they took their orders about how to carry out His Works from the pilot house of Chiang Kai-chek.

And what orders! Along with Christianity going out and the Kuomintang coming in, the elated students became all over China rebellious hordes, defying teachers and discipline, setting up in countless instances their own councils, a la Soviet, to dictate the policies of schools financed for their pleasure by Americans. Classes have since been interrupted at all hours of the day by windy politicians haranguing the students with lofty hokum of the sort Chinese delight in spreading, all purposeless but a novelty preferred to solid work. The American teachers under the Chinese principals give way. The facts are concealed as far as possible by the missionaries, who feel sheepish over the whole business, and who dread the particulars becoming known in America. But from a few indignant ones, speaking privately, actualities crop out by degrees.

The missionaries join the students every Monday morning at the required chin-chin kowtow before the picture of Sun Yat-sen, author of the ludicrous and famous "Sun Yat-sen (孫中山 Sun1 Zhong1shan1)">San Min Chu I," prime anti-foreign leader and Soviet cooperative.

It is interesting to read in connection with this Kuomintang business the anti-foreign textbooks which the missionaries are required to teach. These textbooks, prepared by agitating Chinese as propaganda, incite the students to such anti-foreign heats that they often insult the American teachers (in buildings and on funds supplied by Americans), so that frequently the teachers at the end of the period "feel almost like crying," as one of them put it to me. Copies of these textbooks have been translated where they are written in Chinese, and translations are on file in American Consular offices in China. They make remarkable reading. If there were any real historical perspective in the texts, the matter would be somewhat different. But they are effervescences of almost illiterate hokum.

For example, in the text for study from the "Sun Yat-sen (孫中山 Sun1 Zhong1shan1)">San Min Chu I" ("Three Principles of the People"), by the late Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the total of the foreign wealth in China is estimated, along with an estimate of the total income from it. By ousting the foreigners, Dr. Sun urges, all this wealth would at once accrue to China, and spread its benefits among the population at large. He figures how much per capita each Chinese would get. The reasoning scarcely needs any comment. It is much equivalent to saying that if the sixty million dollar Empire State building were seized by a mob, all of us could get a dividend on its destruction of fifty cents per head. There is evidently no distinction in Chinese anti-foreign economics between public utility property and negotiable currency. It is ignored that the foreign-owned warehouses and wharfs are there in response to Chinese desire to export and sell, with the Chinese employees in everyone vastly outnumbering the few foreigners present, and some Chinese seller taking his profit on every purchase by a foreigner, all in an open competitive field, with the Chinese as free to deal with other Chinese as with foreigners. The arguments in Chinese textbooks for students, in the matter of foreign wealth, are much on the order of the arguments we read in the French newspaper L'Humanite, which is fond of figuring up how much Americans buy in French restaurants and shops, and maintaining that if the odious Americans had not made these purchases, the population of France would be richer by the amount of their total! Ardently eager to sell to us, the Chinese in their school texts propagandize against the only imaginable means by which this is possible - having our agents on the spot to do the necessary purchasing and shipping.

It must be unique in the history of propaganda to have it paid for by those against whom it is in part directed, and further so when the teachers themselves are of a nationality denounced. We pay many of our missionaries to assist in this propaganda from which we may expect to suffer. I knew in Foochow an American woman teacher whose experience in discipline under the new regime occasioned outright disgust among the nonmissionary Americans there. Catching two students cheating in a high school course, as the circumstances were explained to me, she reprimanded them sharply. Of course cheating is not the serious offense in Chinese estimation that it is among Western Europeans and Americans, but the teachers in this school had a notion that they ought to keep up some show of Christian ideals. There was a great row. The two infuriated students, proceeding by the familiar paths of student councils and the Chinese principal, were able to coerce the woman teacher into a public apology before the assembled student body. She went to her room that day bawling in a smother of humiliation, and several hours were needed to figure out how, according to Divine Will, it was all for the best.

Inviting some missionaries to my house for Thanksgiving dinner last year, I was told they "couldn't get off." The new Chinese school administrations have banned American holidays in American schools. Before my time in the same city there occurred an even more severe tax on the finite mind. The circumstances of this I did not know personally, but they were a subject of frequent comment among the older residents. A foreign woman, a devout missionary, found herself years ago possessed of modest means and no children.

She took a liking to a Chinese boy whom she fished out of slavery or its practical equivalent, gave him a good education, and derived a great deal of pleasure from his usual Chinese "promise" of being a force for God in later years. But during one of the intermittent spells of turmoil and anti-foreign outbreaks the youth of so much "promise" disappeared. Conditions were getting serious, and she was preparing, so it was related to me, to flee with a few belongings, when a mob of Chinese appeared at the door. This was natural enough - until she caught sight of the leering face of the leader. It was her erstwhile foundling and ward who, shoving past her with his mob, started in looting. More dead than alive, she crept off to catch the first boat out of the city, to turn her back upon it forever and leave the country. I encountered from time to time in Foochow a Chinese girl, adopted under a somewhat similar circumstance by a British missionary of moderate private means. She had been given the best in Christian mission upbringing, education and so on. Very boldly, publicly, she talked with unconcealed eagerness of the time when the small fortune would be all hers. It was her foremost theme, though she seemed to be well provided with all she needed, and the relations between her and her foster mother seemed amiable enough. She did not realize how her greedy impatience jarred on an Anglo-Saxon. That was a shrewd philosopher who remarked that you can tell a great deal about a people by observing what they take for granted.

Further on the subject of Chinese official domineering over the missionaries and studied malice toward them, I think of the quaint habit of the soldiers at Yenping, who by the current standards were more "friendly" to Americans than at some other places, but nevertheless troublesome enough, with their commandeering of American property, to add a good deal to my day's work now and then. This jovial crowd observed that every seven days the missionaries and their Chinese following gathered at church for services. Accordingly droves of the Chinese soldiers would repair to the church beforehand and foul it so thoroughly that all-day Augean efforts were needed to make it fit for use. But this was such a minor matter that I did not learn of it until it had been going on for some time. Most of the missionaries are very reluctant to report offenses of the Chinese against them, and they usually conceal from the consuls all but the gravest situations needing official intervention. They feel keenly the "community" attitude of criticism for their sentimental submissiveness. They bristle always in defense of the Chinese, like the mother of the neighborhood bad boy. Ever maintaining the fine character of the natives, asserting that "of course there are troublesome people in all countries," they are embarrassed at evidence against their prodigies of virtue.

Once calling on an elderly American woman occupant of an American dispensary compound in Foochow after she had come to the Consulate to report threats of a mob, I learned in casual conversation that for some time past the Chinese soldiers quartered near her had been amusing themselves by stripping naked and parading spitefully up and down the top of her compound wall. They gave a special performance of obscenity, it appeared, whenever she had guests in for tea. She did not want to complain about that, she said - that was the outlook God gave them - she came to ask protection only from the intimidating mob. After the Consulate had made demands upon the local Chinese "government" to use some of its innumerable guards of police to protect her house, the gate was anonymously placarded with an anti-foreign warning in Chinese. That dispensary, incidentally, had operated for years as a charity for thousands of Chinese in the neighborhood, with illness or injury the only requisite for its services, irrespective of race or religion.

Another case, in which I made futile official representations from time to time, concerned the burning of an American church by a Chinese who, being violently anti-foreign, decided that the church near him had brought bad luck. The evidence was tolerably clear, as the man had made open threats to do what he finally accomplished. Several of the local Chinese converts, members of the church, testified against him. Finally, in a gesture of fictitious official interest in the affair - following the aim of the Nanking Central "Government" to win American friendship after the Chapei episode - the Chinese officials agreed to take action. Officers proceeded to the incendiary's home with a warrant for his arrest. The man happened to be fairly well-to-do. The officers stayed awhile, and when they came out, the name on the warrant had been changed to three names - the names of\he church members who had testified. Two of these were arrested. When I left, one of them was still being heckled and intimidated for extortion. Action against the man who was known to have burned the church had apparently been dropped altogether. It is next to impossible in a Chinese community for an American to obtain redress or prosecution in such a case. He can buy prosecution if he cares to pay the price. But naturally missionaries do not wish to proceed in that way.

At the same time another mission philanthropy in Foochow was having trouble with a Chinese family who occupied a house on the school grounds and refused to move out. The family had been taken in out of charity a few months before, being told it could occupy free a certain house until the house was otherwise needed. Once installed, aware of missionary sentimental leniency, the "Christian" family thumbed noses at the missionaries and refused to budge. Afraid of arousing animosity, taking always an attitude of meek supplication despite the Chinese disposition to leap at such an opportunity, the missionaries refused to supply the names or full details of the affair to the Consulate for official intervention. When I left Foochow the Chinese family was still serenely living free of rent in the house on missionary grounds.

I should pay here a word of tribute to the Reverend Vance Maloney, head of the Seventh Day Adventist Church of Foochow, a fellow made of sterner stuff. A huge ranger type of Texan, with not all of his brawn outside his head, he was one of the few missionaries I ever heard of or knew in China who stood up for elementary rights. Going home to America on furlough in 1931, he left his house in charge of a co-worker, another American, but a man with naive notions of generosity utterly unsuited to dealing with the Chinese. Not needing a piece of ground at one end of the garden he foolishly consented to let a Chinese family across the street tend it free for a season. The next time he looked out the Chinese family had cut a hole in the stone wall of the garden for easier ingress and had shut off that part of the garden. Enclosure is a sign of ownership in China, and this looked alarming. But too timid to do, more than protest, he watched the Chinese take over the ground altogether. When Maloney came back he got busy, closed up the garden wall and ordered the Chinese to keep out. They raised a howl and declared the ground belonged to them, in proof of which they cited having tended a crop on it the previous season. The registered deed in the Consular files showed the whole premises had belonged to the Maloney organization since a purchase eighteen years before, its title never contested. But Chinese care little for titles, or any principles or right if a contrary course offers anything to gain. An unused piece of ground, or even a used piece, will often without warning or reason be claimed, the claimants relying upon intimidation to get it.

The affair reached a pitch where the Chinese gang captured a messenger Maloney dispatched to the Consulate for assistance and made threats on the life of his wife and family. In such circumstances the Consulate is obliged, by international courtesy to China as a "sovereign state," to go through the futility of requesting the local government to provide police protection. This is a ridiculous gesture, for in the first place the local government in China is usually indisposed to lend sincere assistance to a foreigner, and in the second place, the police, if sent, are worthless after they get there. Assistance by the local "government" was withheld in this case until I had made repeated trips to police headquarters, with emphasis as strong each time as State Department policy permitted. When the police arrived, the Chinese gang drove them off. (Chinese police will commonly flee from insults and upbraidings.) The gang likewise drove off Maloney's workmen employed to barricade the garden. This left Maloney the job of barricading it himself, while my own part was standing by with a stick. Chinese are so easily intimidated by even a moderate show of positiveness that the gang kept off and the rebuilt wall was finished.

It is the conviction of American Consular officers in China that the missionaries would suffer less if they would realize that the two cheek policy is an absolute failure in dealing with the Chinese. Instead of being shamed into virtue by it, the Chinese naturally take advantage of its privilages. It is the view of the American business man that this posture of crawling humility "spoils" the Chinese, and in fact it does, very decidedly, dispose them to disregard all common rights of foreigners-rights prevailing as a matter of course in every civilized land. Business men in China are perpetually cursing the missionaries for causing all foreigners, as they feel, to lose caste by allowing themselves to be run over and stepped on. Reverend W. L. Beard of the American Board is another name entitled among those of missionaries knew to a place on the roll of honor for self-respecting Americans able to distinguish between Christian generosity and foolhardy gullibility. He was quiet, but he was firm, a veteran of forty years' experience in Chinese traits, and a survivor of the older school of missionaries, commonly men of sterner stuff than the present crop in the field, and capable of recognizing that some of the milksop sentiment of the John R. Mott school is at times inapplicable.

When the Min-hou Magistrate confiscated the deed to a piece of mission-purchased school land when the deed was sent to him to be stamped, and wanted to extort one hundred dollars as the price of handing it back, above the regular fee, Dr. Beard worked with us nip and tuck to get the deed back on an honest basis. By his knowledge of the local dialect he was able to catch up the interpreters, and that helped. We made a test case of this, using all the connivances of legitimate pressure that consulates in China become familiar with as the only way to get results. One day the magistrate would declare that the deed was lost, the next day that it would be returned soon, and so on interminably. An assisting factor in success, one previously mentioned, was that just then the Chinese were making a strong bid for American friendship against Japan. The local officials, in a sense on a dole from the Nanking Central Government to keep them from revolting, were sufficiently interested at the time in their dole to heed Nanking. After keeping the deed a few more weeks to give themselves face, the magistrate handed it over, contenting himself with sending out a gang of gorillas to loot and wreck the house and rob the Chinese family that sold the land to the foreign devils.

Dr. Beard, incidentally, went one day to act as pacifier to a crowd of Chinese students organized against foreign authority in the mission schools. When he appeared a bomb exploded in the building, fortunately neither killing nor injuring anybody. The wells of the school were fouled that same week.

Chinese speakers in America, especially students attending leading universities who are asked by credulous audiences to say a few words, invariably launch into rhetoric about Chinese gratitude to America, and insert a plea for greater "understanding and cooperation." Those two words always draw a good hand. By cooperation is, of course, meant more money to be lavished on them in China. By actual evidence, in any mission school in China, a part of this money will be used to propagandize against us. As for understanding, if it were by some miracle achieved, the Chinese would miss a great deal of easy money now going their way.

It is frequent for the Chinese students to burn down American built or British-built mission schools. This "frequently" is not an expression of personal opinion - it is a fact that is all too apparent in the data on file in consulates all over China, with copies and recapitulations in the archives of the Ministry at Peiping and in the Department of State in Washington. Further and more astonishing, to people at home in America, is that hospitals which have served Chinese communities faithfully, without religious emphasis, without proselyting, for years and years, are indiscriminately burned down likewise. To make this appalling indictment of a people less outraging to the home folks in America and England who are asked for rebuilding funds, the real facts are given very little publicity. In America, so far as I can find, they are not given any. Instead, the idea is allowed to prevail that the losses were sustained "in the course of the current disorders in China," an explanation suggesting that the buildings were destroyed as incidentals of military operations.

To Chinese the fact that they have benefited does not entail, in the way it would with us, a restraining sense of obligation. Much of the history of mission enterprise and its probable eventual defeat in China may be found in this characteristic. It will defeat missionary work in China for the reason that in time this shabby response of the Chinese will become generally known in America, and contributors will invest their charities elsewhere. By the highest standards of charity, people do not give because they expect repayment in gratitude, of course, but because of the belief that what they give will do good. But aside from gratitude, at least the cooperation of the beneficiary in not making an actual attack on the donor is reasonably to be expected. In this modest hope the Chinese have persistently failed us.

One of the staggering disclosures of missionary work in China is that in the foreign philanthropy-supported schools the foreign teachers must take turns at night patrolling the classroom buildings and dormitories to prevent the Chinese students from burning them down. Students fished out of slavery and all other sorts of misery and chaos by American philanthropy in an effort to give them a chance in life, and installed in expensive modern dormitories, are fond of expressing their resentment at the greedy Yankee imperialists by sneaking out of their rooms and setting the house afire. The British suffer likewise. In the Foochow area last year the British lost two valuable school buildings in three months by this brand of Chinese antiforeignism. The Fukien Diocesan Magazine for June, 1932, propounds through a report by Mrs. John Hind, wife of the supervising Episcopalian Bishop:

"Can a missionary or anyone else sit up all night, then walk round bare classrooms, peer into dark corners, hear all the eerie sound of night time, and be very fresh for a full days' work?"

The Bishop himself said in the same publication on the subject: "We should be glad to be able to believe that these fires were either accidents or were due to carelessness on somebody's part, but unfortunately the circumstances leave us little room for doubt that both were the deliberate work of enemies....It is impossible that the crimes could have been carried out without inside cooperation."

An appeal follows to keep the schools going all the same (with more money) in order to convince the unruly that righteousness will triumph. One of the missionaries in charge at the scene of one fire wrote in: "Such a terrible experience inevitably brings with it a deep upheaval of soul. For the great majority this upheaval has led to a closer fellowship and a keener desire to give whole-hearted service to God. In a very few cases, however, terribly dark things have been stirred up, and have depressed us far more than the loss of the building. Indeed we have learned afresh that a loss of ten or twenty thousand dollars' worth of property is as nothing at all compared with the loss to the Church when one member does wrong."

The fellowship of the missionaries in China should certainly be close by this time. The Chinese have provided upheavals, and not much else, ever since the oldest missionary can remember. Those only burned out are fortunate. Hundreds have been slain.

Lest persons unacquainted with Chinese conditions suppose that I suffer from a bias due to isolated personal experience, and may thereby tend to make appear general what is perhaps exceptional, I recommend any impartial handbook giving statistics on outrages to Americans and American property. There is no full compendium that I know of, but such works as the China Year Book, from 1921 to date, supply vivid indications. K. S. Latourette's History of Christian Missions in China provides some interesting facts, though it does not cover fully the recent Nationalist activities, which are highly significant.

By all that I am able to gather, not one American mission school in ten has escaped student outbreaks, with in most cases violence such as looting and burning, since the Nationalists came into power in 1927 with their secret anti-foreign plots. "In the first year of this regime, in one area of east central China alone, forty-five out of one hundred and eight Christian schools were forced to close their doors and abandon work for varying periods. American financed Yali, which was not a religious enterprise but strictly an institution for social service, with broad arts and professional curricula, was forced to suspend for about two years. It is one of the boasts of its American sponsors that the Yali students did not join the soldiers in looting the place in 1927! At Swatow the students and members of the Chinese teaching staff took advantage of the disorders to seize the buildings and eject the foreigners - another sample of the smilingly amiable Chinese faced with a moment of opportunity.

There are missionaries in China who do not hold extravagant beliefs, men and women who realize as well as any observer the difficulties under which they work, and the slight gains among the Chinese as a whole. They carry on not in a spirit of religious fanaticism, nor in a spirit of martyrdom for inner convictions, nor in blindness to the meagerness of results, but seemingly from the simple kindness and goodness of their hearts, because they feel that out of the number of Chinese in contact with them, a few, individually, will be assisted to a better plane of life and enjoyment of it in a more creditable manner, with resulting value to society. Such men as Willard Sutton, W. L. Beard, and Charles Storrs, to mention some I have known, personify this kindness and instinctive desire to help persons less fortunate. Their natures, were they anywhere in the world, would search out ways in which to improve the lot of those around them. Were they in America, we should find them in the Red Cross, in settlement work, or in some endeavor providing full scope for their most assertive energies. Then there are missionaries who see in the practical arts distinct forces of improvement. Some of the missionary enterprises of practical arts emphasis, such as the Christian Herald Industrial Mission, managed by Charles Culver, are convincing in their work of imparting lessons that the Chinese may find directly useful in the way they live now. Of all the mission work in China: that of this character seems to me most deserving of support if we are going to support any. These men are but an outstanding few of the hundreds of American missionaries who are doing their work admirably well in China. Seeing the handwriting on the wall, a great many Americans came home in disgust as soon as the Nationalist policy became clear.

These were the more critical ones, who were not inoculated with the idea that being insolently dictated to, shot at and burned out by the beneficiaries of their lifelong work was their best service to mankind. Those who stayed on have more patience and what they regard as proper Christian humility. They weep that they have only two cheeks to expose.

On the policy of missionary evasion and crawling compromise versus ordinary self-respect, this is what Dr. Paul Wakefield, medical missionary, twenty-two years in China, had to say on leaving the country in 1927 rather than submit to the conditions many other missionaries accepted: "The ignorant coolie has been taught to hate the foreigner and the student has been used to spread lies....Even missionary enterprise, which brought to China the only charity hospitals she has and the only worthy school system, has been attacked as 'imperialistic.' "

The student speech makers, Dr. Wakefield points out - a fact observed by all foreigners - will not take risks of combat themselves. The risks are taken by coolies desperate for the money offered or impressed by force. From cover, the Chinese students, many of them educated in the foreign schools, incite or compel the ignorant coolies to anti-foreign attacks. In conclusion Dr. Wakefield offered the following prophecy which elapsing years have borne out:

"The mission boards have been trying constantly to save the Chinese 'face.'...If the boards continue their efforts to save 'face' for the Chinese they will lose their own."

Here is what another departing medical missionary had to say, voicing the bitterness of hundreds. It is quoted from Hallet Abend's Tortured China, 1930. Abend has been for some years chief New York Times correspondent in China. He writes:

"A woman medical missionary, ice-bound off Taku Bar in a small coasting vessel, discussed this question with great frankness....'I am going home, at the age of sixty-two, a disappointed woman.' So ran her story. 'For thirty-four years I have served the Chinese people as a medical missionary in a remote interior province. Even during the Boxer days I did not leave my small hospital. Evangelization work was not in my line, but for more than three decades I have worked at healing the sick, and at teaching the Chinese how to live in a measure of sanitary decency.

"Today, at sixty-two, I find that I have wasted my life. I might have stayed in America, married, borne several children, and have succored the poor in our own tenement districts. That would have been a useful career...It is a rather bitter thing to go home convinced that my years of service here were useless and unappreciated. But I can be useful from now until the day I die, for I shall spend the rest of my years trying to persuade young folks at home that it would be folly for them to come to China as missionaries."

This portion of Abend's book goes on to relate the appalling atrocities against missionaries from the onset of the Nationalist regime in 1927 on up into 1930, the year of the publication of the book. Stress is placed upon the instances of the Nanking Government's workers inciting mobs to march upon missions, to picket mission hospitals, and close mission schools and colleges. Abend mentions cases of Nationalist soldiers accompanying the mobs, rifles on shoulders, to "protect" the mobs from the missionaries, and stand by while filthy slogans are pasted on churches.

Were such instances isolated? Look at the figures. In 1927-28, out of a total of eight thousand foreign missionaries in Chinese territory, five thousand were forced out. And where did steamer load after steamer load of them flee to? To Japan. But American missionaries in China do not like the Japanese. They cannot be "sorry" for them. It is an interesting study in American character, in aspects of neuro-pathology, that we seldom like anyone we cannot be sorry for. In the missionary mind, this tendency is accentuated. There is glory in martyrdom, in abasement. The Chinese give them a thorough abasing, and they are grateful. The Japanese, Teutonic in their brisk orderliness, sanitation and civic reliability, offer scant opportunities for martyrdom and personal humiliation. They are resented in consequence.

Abend, in the same volume, lists some of the printable anti-Christian slogans "seemingly" sanctioned by the Nationalist Party, and found in "Special Orders" signed and bearing the official seals of Propaganda Bureau directors:

Christianity is primarily the vanguard of the cultural invasion of the Imperialists: therefore it should be speedily stamped out. The Cross of Christ is a tool of Imperialism to crush the Chinese people.

Open the knife, and slay all who profess the foreign teachings. Those who sympathize with Christianity are undesirable members of the Chinese race, and traitors to their country.

Under the leadership of Nationalism, do your best to attack Christianity.

The aim of Christian education is to propagate slavery, to destroy the heart of society by means of education, intoxication of the minds of the young. Therefore the thing to do is to attack Christian schools. Anti-Christian work should be carried on from the standpoint of Nationalism. Therefore, the anti-Christian movement is part of the National Revolution. If our anti-Christian movement succeeds, the first defence line of Imperialism will have been pierced.

The United States today recognizes the Chinese "Government" which grinds out this kind of propaganda against us. By its influences upon radical students and ignorant hoodlum mobs many of our citizens in China, missionaries and non-missionaries, have been slain. The Chinese "Government" openly avows that it is dominated by the Kuomintang - a gigantic semi-secret society which dictates the placement of practically every higher official and prepares every page of anti-foreign inflammatory literature. The evidence of the Kuomintang's sinister responsibility for the repeated murders is evident in the way the Kuomintang slogans and terms are used by the Chinese soldiers and other riff-raff when setting upon foreigners. For example, when two elderly British spinsters were captured up the river from Foochow, they were "tried" by the alleged bandits and sentenced to death by torture for being "Imperialists." After lifelong faithful service to the natives, they were put to death by mutilations and other horrible forms of slow agony. The Chinese Kuomintang "Government" naturally made no very satisfactory efforts to save them. Why should it, when the affair was but one of the many natural consequences of its definite policy?

All these renewed anti-foreign and anti-Christian doings of the Chinese were not a surprise to thinking business and government employed foreigners living close to the scene. Able to judge Chinese character unblinded by fanatical enthusiasm and fantastic hope, they could realize that within themselves the Chinese had remained unchanged, and that their previous smiling amiability had merely measured a deceptive interlude. It has always been thus in China - the missionaries announcing with jubilation that the Chinese were finally turning to Christianity every time a short period elapsed without wholesale massacres and lootings of Christians, while non-missionaries of cool judgment have cautioned, "Wait - the Chinese will soon be themselves again."

To date, decade after decade, the business and government foreigners in China have been right, and the missionaries as successively wrong. Take the date of any notable anti-missionary outbreak in China, and by searching library files for missionary literature of a few weeks or months previous to it, you will discover committee reports hailing gleefully that the days of opposition to mission work in China have passed, and that the masses, encouraged by an awakened government, are at last alert to Christianity's blessings. The missionaries, who live closest to the Chinese, have demonstrated time after time their incompetence to appraise Chinese character.

In connection with the outbreaks and massacres of the period beginning in 1926, it is enlightening to quote a missionary report dated twenty-eight years earlier, assuring the world that Christianity had at last been welcomed to the hearts of the Celestials. The report is from the Prudential Committee of the American Board, Deputation to China, 1898:

"Many a time as we mingled with these people we seemed to ourselves to be witnessing the new birth of a great nation to liberty and political unity, to learning and a Christian civilization. And the scene of this silent, deep transformation was not at the capital, amid the embassies of the great powers. It was in the churches and chapels, the schools and homes of the Christian missions, which, scattered up and down along the coast and far into the interior of every province, are like outposts of a great army, set to guard and to deliver the land............"The government of China, imperial and provincial, by the stress of circumstances is coming to be the protector of missionaries and their work. The people of China are turning with respect and desire to the message of the gospel. It is a wonder of wonders; it is the ripening fruit of hundreds of years. The day of China's salvation has come, and the hosts of the Lord have but to advance and win her to Christ....A new nation is arising - not immobile, exclusive, impassive, like the old, but open from the sea to her farthest mountain range, from Siberia to Burma; open to the foot, the message, the life of the Christian herald; its rivers and its roads, its railways and telegraphs, its cities and homes - all accessible to the best the Western world has to give...her eyes and ears and heart are open. "[Signed] Judson Smith "Charles A. Hopkins "Edward D. Eaton."

Incidentally, thousands of trusting spirits in China comforted by messages similar to this lofty paean in 1898 perished in blood and torture in the Chinese missionary massacres two years later in 1900, in a mob movement sanctioned in its attempts to annihilate the foreigners by the above mentioned "Government of China...the protector of missionaries and their work."

The Empress Dowager of China supplied all available royal troops and officers to assist in efforts to wipe out all missionaries and other foreigners completely. In a typically Chinese manner, the imperial court was benignly approving of missionary work until the successes of the Boxers in massacring them in unprotected areas suggested an opportune time to join in the butchery. Hundreds of foreign missionaries were slain in this drive. The number of massacred natives who had allowed themselves to be labeled "converts" stretched into four figures.

It would seem incredible that, seeing their fellow-workers butchered time after time for their credulity, any credulity would remain in the surviving missionaries. Yet in 1926 the missionaries were hailing the Nationalists as their final glorious ally in China's imminent redemption. Twelve months later the majority found themselves hiding in terror or evacuated to Japan and the Philippines, driven out in the rabid anti-Christian drive of 1927. Naturally treacherous, no Chinese party is likely to announce its purpose until it is confidently ready to strike. The brotherhood twaddle, the expressed concurrence of aims, the general lofty sentiments are swallowed ecstatically by the missionaries.

That it has treacherously failed, costing many their lives, a dozen or fifty times before teaches them nothing.

Looking into this matter, I have found on record exultant reports of Catholic missionaries in China dating back before the middle of the seventeenth century, when "cooperation" of the Chinese Government in assisting the missionaries was heralded through Christendom. But many of those who exulted died a little later by official order or by officially permitted mob butcheries.

It is a frequently true principle of Chinese character that if one of them is not strategically in position to kill you, he will most cordially and admiringly agree with you. Searching for morals, it is interesting that the missionaries have overlooked that one. Missionary blood in China has underscored it.

With the growing boldness of the Chinese resulting from American and British leniency toward their atrocities, which are directly encouraged by the policy of the Kuomintang, crimes against missionaries are naturally not decreasing. The following figures, applying to Catholic missionaries alone, are offered in a report for 1933 under the caption "Witnesses of Christ in China":

Year, Captured, Killed

1912.............1 1
1913.............1 1
1914 ............4 2
1915.............0 0
1916.............3 0
1917 ............1 0
1918.............2 1
1919,............1 0
1920.............2 1
1921.............9 1
1922.............10 1
1923.............11 2
1924.............11 1
1925.............10 0
1926.............16 4
1927.............31 6
1928.............38 1
1929.............42 11
1930.............77 7
1931.............37 6
1932.............13 1
- - Totals 320 47

Three of those captured died in captivity. Evidently most of the captures were for ransom, but with "patriotic" motives alleged in many instances at the later dates. No table is available of Protestant workers captured and killed, though the figures are known to be large.

But pamphlets, photographs, lantern slide lectures by missionaries on furlough and many other publicity devices keep alive among the credulous in America the notion that vast headway is being made among the Chinese by Christianity. Pictures of smiling sloe-eyed school children look convincing, and those seeing them in America do not know enough to ask how many are Christian in the lot, or what became of the "promising" students graduated in that same spot ten years ago, or how many ash heaps there are near the scene marking the activities of midnight incendiarists, who could smile just as winsomely as those in the photograph while studying anti-foreign propaganda under American teachers, on American money.

"This is Lu Woo," explains the beaming missionary. "He came to us one day..." and a wonderful anecdote about Lu Woo follows, prior to passing the hat to enhance Lu Woo's "promise" for the Kingdom.

As a sample of publicity, I recall the remarkable career of a snapshot taken of the Reverend Harry Caldwell. Harry Caldwell is well known around Foochow as a tiger hunter. The Chinese are superstitious about tiger meat, prizing it as precious medicine. Its main virtue is to give the eater courage. Not having much courage naturally, the ignorant Chinese go wild at the chance to get a morsel of tiger. On this occasion a slain tiger had been brought down the mountain to be skinned. A crowd of coolies stampeded to grab the meat. To make sure of fair distribution Caldwell leaped up, and standing over the tiger began waving his arms and shouting that each coolie should take his turn. At that moment the picture was snapped. The tiger did not show - the view was of the Reverend Caldwell imploring the crowd, seen surging forward in frenzied eagerness as if to hear more. This photograph appeared later in a mission publication in America captioned as a throng of Chinese of Fukien, pressing forward to hear Reverend Harry Caldwell's Message of the Savior. It was powerfully convincing - you could see the "spiritual" hunger and excitement in every face.

There is a rather far-reaching analogy in that picture of Chinese clamoring for tiger meat, captioned as spiritually hungry. In justice to Harry Caldwell, I should emphasize that he is known as a thoroughly fine character, and no one who knows him would believe he would sanction such an error. He himself was greatly amused at the slip. I mention it to illustrate what a difference there is at times between the origin of things in mission work and the final report reaching the public.

Leaving tigers and returning to our friends the Nationalists: they subsided somewhat after their first violent frenzies of anti-foreignism in 1927 and 1928, but there has not by any means been a cessation of undercover and at times open campaigning to the same end, and from this the missionaries have suffered most. Obstruction is the order of the day, and it is carried to extreme lengths. Last winter, in so simple an item as getting an X-ray machine into the country for a mission hospital, all sorts of obstacles were put forward by the officials, and our office was occupied on and off for weeks in the matter. That the machine was to be used by a mission charity with the Chinese as the chief beneficiaries meant nothing.

Helping masses of unfortunates is usually a perplexing task with little gratitude anywhere in the world, but so far as the records go, American generosity has nowhere else met such intensive sabotaging as among the Chinese. It is not that they are unfamiliar with our point of view, and conduct themselves as they do through ignorance. The directors of the antiforeign movement are men of educational advantages - a considerable number of them Chinese who have studied abroad. But they have found that anti-foreignism is a good ticket in local politics, and accordingly wage a secret relentless obstructionist campaign against us, in between occasional trips to America to receive a great hand for talking of the friendship of the two "sister republics," and China's deep reciprocated affection.

Out of hundreds of cases, I recall only one official dealing of any consequence that I had with Chinese officials the whole time I was in China that was free from evidence of this covert obstructionist policy, the daily earful of impromptu lies behind which was waged an ugly opposition ranging from refusal to protect endangered American lives to intimidation of the native Chinese who dealt with us. When anything approaching the official courtesy to be expected in any civilized country is obtained for an American in China, the usual reason is that the consul has prudently made "friend pigeon" with the proper Chinese by means of feasts and dinners tendered, with commonly an abundance of wine or champagne (at the consul's expense, not the State Department's).

Everywhere in China the American consuls have each picked out the most eligible Chinese official in their districts, and keep on as friendly terms with him as possible, inasmuch as Chinese officials seldom do anything from a sense of official duty, but will often do a great deal in reciprocation of an elaborate feast at which they can eat and drink themselves to the full.

In Foochow, until he was ousted, our mainstay of this kind was Colonel Kuo, a very pleasant fellow and chief of police. With things that were within his field, when he was not obstructed by somebody stronger, he was extremely valuable. In Amoy, in the same province, Consul Lynn Franklin's invariable reliance was a certain Admiral Lin. So much of his news was a synopsis or an elaboration of what the Admiral said about something that along that coast American fellow-officers spoke of Franklin's Amoy news as "the latest from Admiral Lin." In Amoy, as in Foochow and most consular posts in China, the chief American population is missionary. In the country at large a few Colonel Kuos and Admiral Lins on a friendship basis make possible the rickety continuation of our philanthropies.

By such devices are we enabled to assist the unwilling Chinese. There is probably many a missionary in China who unknowingly owes his property, and in instances his life, to a crock or two of Chinese wine or a few bottles of French champagne.

"Prayer and faith saved us," rejoices the missionary next morning after the crisis is past, not seeing over the compound wall where the consul's house coolie is gathering up the empty bottles to take out and sell as his perquisite for six coppers apiece.

In recent years - particularly in 1932 and 1933 - the innumerable committee reports and judgments of "practical thinkers" urge a missionary program "more in keeping with Chinese needs." The most important of these reports, that of the Laymen's Commission of Inquiry, pleads: "The Chinese are putting new stress on better qualified missionaries and, particularly, upon adaptability to new circumstances, a demand coupled with increasing Chinese control of the return missionaries."

There is a plea in the report for a better program, to dish up an offering, so to speak, in the hope of pleasing a somewhat jaded and whimsical Chinese appetite.

As personal comment from the experience of hundreds of intensive day and night efforts to help settle difficulties between missionaries and the Chinese, it seems to me that this report misses widely some of the essentials. For one thing, there is an inconsistency in its implication that the missionaries should provide a program with greater attention to social studies, and at the same time avoid offending the Nationalist sensibilities. This is an impossibility. Any program touching honestly upon practical social science and political economy in China could do nothing more than emphasize the outrageous tyranny and murderous extortion and wholesale oppression of the Nationalists in comparison with the rest of the world's slightly less terrible varieties of corruption. To utter a straightforward statement in a school classroom in China having to do with China's needs would voice in inference a criticism of those in power.

At present courses in political science are conducted in the mission schools. I understand that all the mission institutions of sufficiently advanced curricula have them. Naturally such courses teach only principles, avoiding a specific application. To get an idea of what the Chinese students had to say I read from time to time dozens of their compositions on political and related topics. They were all of the Chinese elliptical truism order - usually starting out with some such platitude as that the ideal state was one where everybody had enough and nobody had too much, then proceeding through a tiresome succession of words to prove that states not of this kind have disadvantages, and then coming back to the opening obviousness with a Q. E. D. ring of triumph, settling the matter completely.

Nine-tenths of any Chinese composition will be simple statements of what constitutes no information at all, such as that starvation is to be deplored, oppressive tyranny is bad, and that good government is better than bad government. They make concentric rings and ellipses out of these triumphs of discernment, never proceeding to anything new or anything reflecting objective observation, in a manner to give an Occidental a headache in five minutes. They quote or paraphrase always in terms of what is initially selfevident.

Just as the Chinese mentality lacks real inventiveness, it emphatically lacks constructiveness in all abstract fields. Their leading writers and speakers are ninety-nine per cent of the same stamp, as witness any Chinese magazine or newspaper, or the theses Chinese university students are prone to polish off in this country. The modern writer whom the Chinese most revere, Sun Yatsen, reveals everywhere this academic negativity. He tells what aught not to be done, but in stating what should be done he goes little farther than saying that he wants China to be a land of cooperating workers living happily. Out of the thousands of Chinese students with the best education the world can provide it is one of the amazing contemporary phenomena that they have produced no thinkers of any rating.

The significantly able analyses of Chinese problems have been made by foreigners, mostly British and American. No Chinese I have met has been able to point out to me a single book of Chinese authorship on current troubles there that is worth the reading in a constructive sense. There is, by Chinese, no honestly broad and detailed work recognizing and analyzing conditions, let alone objectives. With a vastly larger educated personnel to draw upon, they do not offer us any discussions of their problems anywhere near as good as those we get, for example, from the Russians. The prevailing policy of all Chinese writers is a public denial of what each is unable to deny in private in respect to the more hideous details of the reality. Hence, if Harvard, Columbia, Yale, Cornell, Syracuse and other favorite colleges of Chinese students in this country are unable to make honest constructive and forceful political thinkers out of Chinese, it is asking a great deal to expect the mission schools in China to do so with less equipment and blocked by local traditions and by the harassing spies and secret incendiarists of the Kuomintang in their midst, ever alert for the chance utterance that may expel the American teacher.

Here I recall a somewhat typical instance of the wistful longing of the present Chinese government officials for political thinking among students. A student at Foochow Christian University got hold of some literature that inflamed him to a lot of jabber about equality, liberty, etc. As bold notions of politics are unwelcome in China, where they may invite disaster upon all concerned through Kuomintang reprisals, this individual was told by Dean Chin to leave. (The foreigners arrange to have ticklish matters of this kind adjusted by Chinese faculty officials.) Later (last autumn) this student, still full of political individuality, went to the Foochow chief of police to demand the release of some arrested persons. "Get on your knees when you address me," the chief is reported to have said, adverting to the old Chinese mandarin custom of making a plaintiff prostrate himself before an official. But it seems that this incorrigible had read too much political philosophy - repeated his plea for liberty and remained standing. The chief of police snatched his pistol and shot the student dead in his tracks. Then he called out to the fellow's politically-minded followers," "Any more?"

But they were by that time too far away to hear.

Further in connection with mission schools going into sociology or politics in detailed application, it is to be remembered that the ruling gangs are subject to change, and an outspoken adherent of one creed may be chalkmarked by the next. For example, a few years ago vast sums were spent by the Communistic central regime to propagandize communism in China, and this won a good many nominal adherents. Then the Nationalists made wholesale butchery of those thus converted.

The radical student mentioned above is not exactly typical - as Chinese go. He was merely a poor guesser - not intentionally a martyr. Neither politics nor Christianity makes many martyrs among the highly opportunistic and practical Chinese.

As lightly as a Chinese esteems life, it is still worth more to him than any idea. Upon rumors of an anti-Christian drive, thousands of exposed Chinese "converts" promptly disclaim their allegiance. Nero's lions would have starved in China.

As to sending out better qualified teachers, as we commonly hear urged, such advice strikes a nonmissionary spectator as merely a manifestation of the typically American attitude of self-accusation.

We are prone, when efforts are disappointing, to say that perhaps we haven't done enough. What we have done for the Chinese, notwithstanding their persistent murdering of our teachers and their burning of scores of our mission buildings and their officially inspired campaigns of hostility against us, totals at a conservative estimate well over $100,000,000 in American money. We have sent out or financed thousands of the best teachers obtainable, and many of them have been of fairly wide reputation in the United States.

But the Chinese are talented in assuming just the right tone of injured humility combined with an air of surprised disappointment that stirs in average Americans a hang-dog feeling of guilt in not having met just expectations. This wheedling act is manifest in every peddler and coolie in China, and veteran foreigners after lifelong experience with its underlying mercenary motive of cool calculation simply clutch their wallets and laugh it off. On our side of the Pacific it is naturally not understood, nor its preposterousness analyzed - so it works pretty well.

A startling fact is that the Chinese appear to blame us for the quality of their students. But as mentioned, their students who are exposed to the best in American universities here are about as sorry a product as those educated in China. What they really ask, though they do not put it in such terms, is that we inoculate the Chinese students with character. That is their chief lack, but it is naturally something that we cannot put into them from without. Academically, the mission schools and universities impress an observer as doing very well. Ordinary American or British texts, or modifications of them, are used in pedagogy, chemistry and the other modern sciences, mathematics, and the rest of the curricula. There are few Chinese texts for the higher grades that are any good. So far as funds allow, the best in magazines, newspapers and books is made available in the libraries of the mission schools. The student at a central mission school enjoys vastly better opportunities in education than prevail over large portions of the United States today, and in hundreds of these schools he has contact with better teachers than he would have in the United States. I remember spending a week-end with Professor Willard Sutton, Ph.D., Cornell, one of the finest, most alive and invigorating men I met in China. He showed me over the chemistry department under him at Foochow University. The laboratory equipment greatly exceeded what I have seen in colleges in America, although this institution is one of the minor ones among missionary enterprises in China.

The total number of students in all mission schools in China today is presumably around half a million. Their education is contributed to by various foreign countries, but more than half the bill is paid by America. Meanwhile it is pertinent that with the considerable money possessed by the well-to-do Chinese themselves, and with the innumerable funds from the impressive levies everywhere, they have done next to nothing in providing educational facilities distinctly their own.

Pearl Buck and others think we should give the Chinese a better education than we give them at present, to the end that they may have more capable leaders. But it is worth reflection that American philanthropy is assisting to educate more students in China today than were in attendance in the entire original Thirteen Colonies at the beginning of our Revolution in 1776, with vastly better facilities and with coverage of more advanced branches of learning. Yet in the presence of cooperation and courage, worthwhile things were accomplished then, with the lack of universal advanced education no great drawback. The point is obvious that character and intelligence, not a superabundance of elaborate academic training, count in a crisis, and that without these academic training is a useless pretense. The fundamental lack in China is character, and it is precisely this lack in themselves that the Chinese, leaderless, opportunistic, treacherous to the death politically with one another, accuse us of not remedying by more American-financed education (under Chinese mismanagement). This plaint is voiced in extenuation of China's woes by thousands of Chinese who hold A.B.'s or M.A.'s. And in all probability not one of them would possess the makings of leadership, if the entire Congressional library were crammed into his head.

China has the advantage of a population more easily governed by central authority than most, a people, who while quarrelsome in a back alley and neighborhood way, are as a population easily governed by moderately strong unified force. The great majority ask nothing more than to be let alone unoppressed. Yet those Chinese in strategic positions to exercise this moderate show of authority fall vastly short of the requirements for it. They betray and obstruct one another, maintaining a tug of war, with each pulling a different strand in a different direction, not one willing to give an inch in a common cause, each negotiating with temporarily allied henchmen to stab competitors in the back, each determined on no compromise which does not offer him a lion's share of the booty.

Such a problem is not one for solution by more post-graduate degrees or more thumbing of texts. Every participant is already as familiar as anyone could be with what is wrong. The most illiterate boatman or small shopkeeper able to speak a little pidgin English knows and can tell you what is wrong. The participants reveal their conscious guilt by their endless lofty talk about justice, fairness, cooperation and the like, all elucidating principles of human dealing self-evident and known, even if infrequently observed, before the alphabet was invented, and not dependent for comprehension upon modern courses in sociology. And as they talk, they covertly keep up the eternal conniving, blocking, assassinating and plundering. In all this the returned Chinese who have specialized in civics, political economy and problems of government in American or European universities join gleefully, or sit by and fan themselves in serene Oriental indifference, or in a few cases write platitudinous articles saying people would be happier if things were otherwise.

It has been pointed out in preceding chapters that contrary to the current American conception, the Chinese leaders do not impress anyone as struggling against the illiteracy of the masses. The thing is the other way around, with the illiterate masses struggling - for survival - against the terrible tyranny and crushing oppression of their leaders. Not anxious for strife and content to plow their small farms, the majority of the common people would be better off without leaders than with the ones they have. Certainly it is twaddle to maintain that more education would ease the woes of China while the prime tyrants in the country are those of relatively superior educational advantages. If there were the faintest pretense of the educated group making a decent stand against the foremost ills of China, the matter would have a different complexion.

In most of the chronic reports on mission work by this or that committee of investigation, we read that the missionary to the China field should be more "adjustable." The term is obscure. Surely it is hard to figure out how the average missionary, enduring amiably the insults, threats and other abasements that he gets in return for his altruism, could be more "adjustable" than he is now. Perhaps the meaning is that he should be a little quicker with the firebucket after teaching all day, a little more limber in the cervical vertebrae to make the kowtow to the picture of the arch anti-foreignist Sun Yat-sen every Monday morning, a little more nimble in getting out the back window during his seasonal flights before attacking mobs which his learned Christian Chinese co-workers do nothing to quell.

We seem to revel in self-accusation and self-blame. At the largest women's club in Cleveland I heard a lecturer, after a promise to reveal the "inside facts," tell the story of why a certain Chinese planning to study agriculture at Cornell didn't do so. The sinister revelation of the lecturer was that the Chinese found our agricultural courses, patronized extensively by students from the Middle West and West, applicable to big farms, whereas in China the farms are all handkerchief size. "We failed - we failed ignobly," shouted the lecturer making the clubwomen squirm with guilt, "to provide agricultural courses at Cornell suited to Chinese conditions!" There was no answer to this stinging thrust. We simply slunk off with lowered eyes. The lecturer apparently recommended remodeling Cornell. This tendency to self-blame explains in part how our missionaries continue to obtain money for their projects. It has been the fashion for about everybody who has had anything to say on international affairs during the last fifteen years to tell us that we are self-centered, intolerant, and falling down on our obligations to the rest of the world. But reviewing one by one our international difficulties, it appears on check-up that most of them have originated because we were not selfcentered enough. So it is with our China relations. Money subscribed for our philanthropies, while accepted readily by the Chinese, is later cited by them as evidence of our determination to disorganize their spirit and culture for purposes of "imperialistic exploitation." The missionaries thereupon call for more money to allay the trouble previous money in the same direction has caused, reminding us of our "obligation" to China. So far as breeding international good will is concerned, our missionary investment is thus a vicious expansion of mischief.

What is going to happen?

There are many coolly observant persons who believe we are now near the twilight of American missionary enterprise in China. My own observation of conditions in China, and my review, so far as possible, of all that has been said and done on the subject in recent decades leads to the conviction that this is true. During the last ten years we have gained a great deal of experience. In respect to foreign countries and American plans for them, we have learned that good intentions are not always good sense, and that not all worthy projects are workable. Reform is not dead, our race is still young, but hard lessons will induce the realization that the objectives of reform, and the possibilities of it, may well be studied in the light of available knowledge of human nature generally, and racial trends specifically.

In America, we have reached a pausing, if not a halting point, in the matter of diverting people's inner impulses into ideal channels as compared with channels of natural preference. Prohibition has failed - for the first time in American history we turn back in a national undertaking. A great deal otherwise has happened in the last five years to emphasize that ideal conditions cannot be attained by shouting that they exist or are at hand. All this will influence people to make an honest appraisal of what missionaries have accomplished in China, because the same spirit that shouted down realities in America between 1920 and 1930 has continued to shout down realities in China. We now are more suspicious of that blatantly optimistic, fact-defying spirit in domestic affairs - in the future we shall be so more and more in foreign affairs. We are already a far jump from the days when we expected the Cubans and the Filipinos to love us forever because we helped them against Spain, and a far jump, too, from the days when ever American's sloganized affection for the French, as custodians of world honor, was "Give till it hurts." We may hesitate to repeat that error with the Chinese.

The trend in America is toward less support for evangelical missionary work, and we may believe that the end is in sight among the Protestant organizations. Looking at the social service side, we must acknowledge that this appears to create no class of enlightened people in China, though it equips individuals with advantages. These, individuals, however, seem more commonly than not, after they have got what they could, to show little sign of carrying on the work and making a contribution to the country.

In short, the real Chinese patriots in China are American missionaries. They think ten times as much about the welfare of China as the Chinese themselves, and they express their ideas a hundred times as practically. On top of this fact, hostility toward them for what they have done in trying to improve the country is not likely to encourage further American support for mission enterprises. Innumerable Chinese have plenty of money - vastly more than the majority of Americans who keep up the enterprises to which they contribute nothing. Sufficient-money is available in China to run the enterprises we have founded, and permit our missionaries to depart. That seems a fair solution. If the Chinese really want what we are doing, but do not want foreigners doing it, why not call off our workers, and turn the plants over to the Chinese as a parting gift? There are thousands of educated Chinese who have had no work for years what could serve as teachers. Chinese of means in China, or abroad in America, Honolulu, Manila and Singapore, could contribute funds. The success of the Chinese in this work could make good the boasts of the missionaries as to their competence.

What we know privately is that the Chinese would bungle the whole business hopelessly. But what of it? That is what they ask for, shoot at us for, loot us for and propagandize to obtain. And at an immense saving of international friction, money and individual life we should be neatly out of a thankless muddle.


NOTHING is more evident on the scene in China than the wide difference between the actualities of the chronic turbulence there and the interpretations placed upon these disturbances by the majority of wellmeaning but grossly ill-informed writers and lecturers who venture comments in the American press. In only the rarest instances can an American resident in China find anything indicating insight into the realities by authors and speakers.

The notion of contending factions of differing aspirations, as it is phrased, is found as an opinion only outside of China. The aspirations in the first place do not differ. They all aim at the same thing, which is loot. And the aspirants are not masses of the population, but a handful of rival leaders, each able to recruit and organize under him enough followers to make a bid, either political or military, for the spoils and plunder. The troops under the various moguls are where they are and what they are because eating is surer that way - because they prefer an uncertain life to an uncertain livelihood. They know they are liable to be betrayed or sacrificed by an ambitious whim of their leader at any time, but they accept these risks because that is less hazardous than not accepting them.

For the average Chinese, events of recent years - the last twenty-two years - have multiplied the hazards of survival on any terms. At present many can reasonably believe their chances are better as soldiers, with license to loot and bully for their daily food, than as civilians beset by vast armies aimlessly and indefinitely quartered on the populace, paralyzing trade, rendering employment difficult and confiscating the earnings of legitimate workers. It is a case of running with the pack or being preyed upon by the pack.

A follower of one of the leaders, though the promised wages of ten or twelve dollars Mex a month are seldom paid, has a fairly reliable meal ticket in the shape of his gun when the rations obtainable otherwise are too slim. The slack and often completely absent restrictions regarding plunder make a little extra cash possible now and then. As for any aspirations of the political sort, the average rifle-carrier in China never had any in his life. He never hears, except perhaps in some brief slogan form, of the aims his general announces to give face to his private adventures. Chinese soldiers are always ready to switch to the opposing side, and on promises of slightly better pay or more prompt pay or better territory to plunder, vast numbers of them are constantly doing so. Switching to the opposition is common among officers as well as among men. Thousands deserted to the Communist side from the armies sent against the Communists from Canton and Amoy last year, and a few days later swarms of these were reported to have rejoined their former outfits. The number of officers in China who have remained steadily with one allegiance during the past three years is not tabulated, but it may be estimated as very nearly zero. When foreign groups get together in China and conversation turns to what it usually turns to - the local rackets - the latest reports of switched allegiances are exchanged in the manner that a club group in America would discuss stock market fluctuations. The desertions to the "bandit" side and back again and vice versa are as regularly recurrent everywhere as sunshine and rain.

The following is a sample, one among a number, I find in my notes of this on-again-gone-again-Finnegan life typical of Chinese military biography: (The translation of the report is by a Chinese acquaintance of mine. The report is dated June 3, 1932.)

Ch'en Wei, the notorious bandit leader, used to capture people for ransom and massacre them in the Foochow-Fuching-Changlo border, causing great disturbance to the local community. He was a native of Tai I Village, Min-hou district, aged twenty-six, having graduated from the Provincial Middle School and also from the Military Academy of the Fourth Division. Ch'en Wei was an adjutant of Huang Pao Yun's troops at Mintsing. Being a man of good ability, he was once sent to Shanghai by Huang with $3,000 Mex. for the purchase of arms and ammunition. He never returned to Huang but kept all the arms for himself. Soon afterwards he plundered an exchange bank at Fuching to the amount of over $10,000 Mex. and then made an escape to Shanghai. During the peasants' revolt at Changlo, he stealthily returned from Shanghai to take command of his old bands and indulge in plundering. He brought several men under the disguise of marines to kidnap the American lady, Miss Halverstadt, and other passengers from the Kentien launch. After the release of the American lady, the Provincial Government offered rewards of $5,000 for his immediate arrest. Since then his band was constantly attached to the Second Brigade of Marines. Thinking that his influence was lost, he had requested the Second Brigade of Marine forces to admit his men to that unit; meanwhile, Mr. Lin Shou-kuo, newly appointed Commander of Marine Forces for communist suppression, came to Foochow from Amoy. As Lin was anxious to incorporate some independent units to his forces, he appointed Ch'en a major of Second Detachment under the Second Brigade of the Marine forces with the hope of acquiring more arms for his cousin Lih Ching's troops. On May 27, 1932, a junk, No. 84, was commandeered by the Commander of Navy at Pagoda Anchorage and sailed to Changlo for the transportation of Ch'en Wei's troops to Pagoda Anchorage on the declaration that he should go with his troops to Amoy, together with Lin Ching's troops to suppress communists. So Ch'en Wei left his place on May 29th, bringing with him about sixty guards and twenty officers.

Luoxing Pagoda 羅星塔
Luoxing Pagoda (at Pagoda Anchorage)

Upon his arrival at Pagoda Anchorage, his troops were disarmed and Ch'en Wei was made a prisoner. In the prison he wrote two letters to certain officers, bitterly praying for mercy, but the latter ignored them. Realizing that he had no hope for his life, he wrote his aged parents and wife a letter each full of repentance.

At two A.M. June 2, 1932, he was taken out from the prison and escorted by several tens of soldiers to Hou Shan. At his request, he was given a bottle of brandy, some cigarettes and cakes. He was killed by four "shots at Hou Shan, Pagoda Anchorage, under supervision of an officer of the Navy.

This account does not reveal one pertinent circumstance. This is that while Ch'en was on his way to join Mr. Lin, Mr. Lin himself fell out with headquarters, with all adherents automatically outlawed. Thus the hero was outlawed by a higher-up's quarrel in which he did not participate. His final end came because of a second row, with which Ch'en was likewise not connected. No idea of justice motivated the execution. Those arranging it were equally bad. Briefly, Ch'en began as a "loyal" officer, stole funds, set up as a private bandit, again joined the government forces, again deserted to take up kidnapping, was once more received into the army as an officer, was again outlawed, then promised an army commission, was captured and executed.

Among the higher-ups, biographical summaries of the outstanding military chiefs in China now show there is scarcely one who has not been both an ally and an enemy of almost every other one during the last seven years. Most of the military men we had dealings with in Fukien had been under two or three allegiances during the last three years. Several, like Ch'en Wei, were alternately bandits and "loyalists." But there is never an alliance in the sense of two strong leaders combining in a cause other than their own private interests. Altruistic combinations have been hailed in the press from time to time, but to date, early subsequent developments have shown that the public spirit alleged by the partnerships and believed by a gullible foreign public was non-existent.

The Chinese are well aware of the extent to which an American public can be fooled by putting a satisfactory pious label on pure devilment. The banner and slogan technique has crossed the Pacific, and there is a certain humor in observing the way it fools the original champions back in America. American readers are prone to be impressed in reading of a solemn feast of Chinese leaders wherein each present pricked his skin and signed a momentous compact in blood agreeing to fight for the glory and lasting unification of China, even unto the death. By following the news with unimpaired memory, the impressed reader might note that half, or more, of the signatories were within a few weeks fighting one another again, with the only visible unity of purpose among them being that of looting their respective territories as thoroughly as possible. But the odd Chinese names do not stick in the foreign reader's head, and when a few weeks later he reads of the treacherous doings of some of the bond brotherhood, he accepts the news as a new development altogether, not identifying the participants, and reflects sadly upon the obstacles confronting that splendid group of patriots he read about not long before.

蔡廷鍇 cai4ting2kai3
蔡廷鍇 Cai4 Ting2kai3, 1892-1968, commander of the 19th Route Army of the Republic of China's National Revolutionary Army

There was an elaborate ceremony of the bond brotherhood business among various "loyal" Nanking army leaders last year. The blood pledge was to die in unity against Japan. Yet this summer the "loyal" generals have been fighting one another again, and each has made a separate peace, for his own spoils, with Japan. Feng Yu-hsiang is an outlaw as I write this. Another who swore eternal allegiance was the formerly zealous "loyalist," General Liu Kweitang, now fighting for Manchukuo. A mediator sent by Nanking to try to argue deserting generals into returning was shot on the spot. While the bond brotherhood was working out in this fashion on land, the main "loyal" naval force of five ships deserted and headed north toward Manchukuo. Presumably they got no good bid from Japan, for a few days later (New York Times, June 27, 1932, et sequor) the five vessels headed south, apparently to dicker with the revolting Cantonese, stopping en route at Amoy to try to sell out to Tsai Ting-Kai.

If any reader regards these views as over-caustic and cynical, I simply recommend to him that he begin a scrap-book of reliable news items upon any single outstanding Chinese general who catches his fancy, and follow it through for six months. There are patriots of a day among the military leaders in China, and now and then patriots of a few weeks or longer. But a real opportunity for scholarship beckons in finding one with twelve months' constancy behind him. Chinese patriots fizzle out faster than pop bottles at a barbecue.

By way of illustrating this point, let us take a few of the recent news items in the New York Times by headlines:

Peiping, June 8, 1933 - INVASION IS AN AID TO UNITY OF CHINA - Nanking's Authority is Firmly Established for First Time Since 1928, by defeat of Japan's plan to shatter Chinese unity.

Shanghai, June 23, 1933 - GENERALS PROCLAIM INDEPENDENT STATE IN NORTHERN CHINA - Nanking Is Denounced - Appeal Is Made to Populace of Hopei Province Against Nationalist "Dictatorship"...General Feng Yu-hsiang, in revolt against Nanking, continues in control....


Shanghai, June 30, 1933 - CHINESE GENERAL KILLED BY SHOT...Attempt Is Made to Prevent the Tsingtao Squadron from Going to Join Manchukuo...mysterious shooting of Nanking's mediator....


Shanghai, July 23, I933 - GEN. FENG RETIRES FROM DOLANNOR...Entire Resources Freed for Meeting Central Government's Armies, Advancing on Kalgan.

Shanghai, August 23, 1933 - CHINA OFFERS HIGH POST TO FENG, RECENT REBEL...Nanking offered him choice of three high positions...It is understood he probably will accept....

Shanghai, August 27, 1933 - TUNG SEIZES CHINESE CITY FOR BARGAINING PURPOSES...The renegade former Governor of Jehol, Tang Yu-lin....

湯玉麟 Tang1 Yu4lin2
湯玉麟 Tang1 Yu4lin2, 1877-1937, Chinese warlord in the Fengtian clique and Chairman of the government of Re4he2 (Jehol)

Tang Yu-lin is the worthy who left his troops in the lurch last winter to commandeer all the supply trucks to haul off his huge stock of opium and flee. The cabled dispatch mentions the opium as "a few of his personal belongings."

The list above could be prolonged for pages. And it is to be remembered that only the larger events are cabled to America. On the scene you hear of nothing else but desertions, rejoinings, new desertions, assassinations, ad infinitum. The amazing feature is that no editor in the United States ever appears to follow a career through for a few weeks. A single rosy news dispatch will inspire a dozen editorials and luncheon speech references to the long awaited progress of Chinese unity. The public at large keeps vaguely in mind this rosy hokum, never checking it up in fact. It is amazing in China how missionaries remain insulated against penetration of the hard realities. Just before I left China I ran into a group of missionaries who were professedly elated over the final unification of China. They said the Japanese aggression had accomplished it (a miracle almost, they called it), something years of internal political "effort" might have failed to achieve. They spoke of the resistance the Chinese were then making along the undefined Manchukuo frontier. I expressed the belief that within a few months the evidence of dissensions among the Chinese leaders in that very area would be conspicuous, and that suspicious separate "peaces" would be made by various Chinese leaders then allegedly united against Japan. This observation takes credit for no particular sagacity. It was what was doubtless the anticipation of nearly every foreigner, non-missionary, interested in forecasting Chinese developments in the light of their everyday characteristics and past performance. The news of June, July and August has borne out this expectation very thoroughly. The armistice has come off with all the usually attendant freakishness of individual leaders in Chinese doings, with many battling against one another and separately fighting Nanking as vigorously as they ever fought against the Japanese. That is no similitude of great fierceness, but it indicates the way things go in a matter of growing forecasts of Chinese patriotism.

Present reports are that General Feng, the hose-baptizing "Christian" leader, is holding out with his army of allegedly fifty or sixty thousand troops against the Japanese while his confederates in the same cause have accepted a Japanese peace. This leaves Feng fighting against a Nanking Chinese army and against Japanese forces at the same time. Two probabilities will automatically occur to the average foreigner in China in reading of this action by Feng: The first is that Feng is not doing it for nothing and the second is that he will not do it very long. Within a few weeks he will withdraw with some face-saving announcement as surely as he is Chinese. And the chances are that he will be a few hundred thousand dollars better off when he does so.

It is well appreciated in China that a leader with a fair number of soldiers will set out to make himself a menace, either to the Japanese or to Chinese rivals, purely for the purpose of raising a bid to buy him off. The more formidable he can make himself look, the more money he can expect the "enemy" to offer him to lie down and retire, or accept a "position." Therein looms spending money for a youthful leader and a nice nest-egg for an elderly one.

To the Japanese this business is a matter of dollars and cents. If a Chinese general can be bought off more cheaply than the cost in munitions and manpower required to rout him, he is accordingly bought off. The number bought off is an imposing total. For years it was the regular way of getting results in China. Of course, in a good many instances the leaders bought off in this fashion find it expedient to have a few of their coolies slain in a mock skirmish with the opposition troops. That lends a little face to the procedure. In Chinese military doings at large, it is significant how many commanders of large armies "withdraw" or "suffer losses dictating a compromise" when the intimate facts of the affair show that the commander really put up no honest resistance at all.

It was noticeable that among the various Chinese armies opposing the Japanese during the spring of 1933 each Chinese leader made his separate "peace" with the enemy. Well, what after all is a man's army for in China? Their typical Chinese character cropped up further when, after settling privately with the Japanese, these patriots turned their armies toward their own capital with threats that brought new "settlements" from their own people!

When you hear of peace anywhere and at any time in China, you can conclude that a bit of money has been passed.

Perhaps it is true that every man in every country has his price, if all values appealing to all ambitions are taken into account, but it is certainly not true elsewhere, as in China, that every man has his cash price. Certainly the World War would have been a different affair, a money war in the real sense of the word, if the leaders of the Allied and German armies had been approachable with substantial bribes. The advent into it of America would have been told in terms of Hindenburgs and von Mackensens and von Tirpitzes "resigning because of ill health" and the like, subsequently to live in voluptuous luxury on U. S. Treasury notes in convenient neutral countries. That such was not the case, while from day to day it is the case in China, illustrates the biggest and most fatally hopeless obstacle to any early regeneration of the Chinese as a nation.

With the consciousness of a past creditable in courage and patriotism an essential incentive to any people, the plight of the Chinese, whose past is characterized by a conspicuous scarcity of both, is apparent. They are nowhere near as well off in this psychological asset as the Mexicans, for example, among whom ruinous turmoil has recently prevailed for many years, and where illiteracy is almost equally serious. But while Mexicans have been betrayed by innumerable self-seeking scoundrels, upon the whole no one could say that they lacked courage, nor assert that the patriots among the Mexicans, fairly numerous, too, asked overwhelming odds before risking an issue. A different situation confronts us in China where, since even the majorities show no courage, the minorities naturally cannot be expected to exhibit much.

It is often stated, but by unanalytical people, that "man for man" the Chinese armies are splendid groups of fighting men, and that their lack of success is attributable to poor equipment. But more than that is necessary to explain how 10,400 Japanese troops routed 200,000 Chinese troops over thousands of square miles of Manchuria within a few weeks in 1931. As analogies to the military situation of highly-trained troops equipped with up to the minute military devices opposing superior numbers of less well equipped troops on the latter's home soil, it is worth recalling that the highly military French with aircraft and all sorts of modern aids were frustrated for years by the Moroccan Riffs, desert tribesmen whose main weapon was their courage, in an area quite as large as Manchukuo, and a somewhat similar contrast is apparent in the fierce and age old resistance of the northwest frontier tribes against the British forces in India. In the closing months of the American Civil War Lincoln's troops met stubborn resistance even against ten-to-one advantage. Great Britain put the largest army she had ever had in any field into South Africa before a comparative handful of Boers was subdued.

But in these instances of opposition of home-soil troops to more scientifically equipped and organized invaders a fierce courage and a sense of cooperation were essential to even temporary success. Both these qualities are decidedly lacking in Chinese character. This is important as a consideration in appreciating the probable continuation of chaos in China, because with tendencies to compromise, bribery and transient personal advantage as strong as they are, and the general preference among the leaders for a material sufficiency rather than for the attainment of an abstract objective, no campaign is likely to go through to finality and place anyone person or group in authoritative ascendancy.

In a sense the Chinese leader is practical in a way that we are not, and are glad we are not. With a few square miles, or a province or two under him, a Chinese leader with plenty of opium, concubines and food for endless eating, may expediently reflect that he is better off not risking the luxury that he has for ambitions that may jeopardize it. He prefers his limited autonomy, too, to any partnership in a larger authority over more extensive territory. That is, he would rather be the boss in say, Yunnan, than a prominent subordinate in a national government that ruled the whole of China. This is comparable to an American who would rather be mayor of a good profityielding city than have a low-paid cabinet post in Washington. But where we have relatively few such men, practically all Chinese are of that order. Of course, the average Chinese is not bothered by abstract ideas about doing anything for the country at large, or in fact with ideas about doing anything for anybody but himself and his immediate family. As a personal philosophy - setting aside the outrageous tyranny usually accompanying it in China - perhaps it is intelligent.

But collectively, as it operates in the country as a whole, its destructive consequences are too obvious to require mention. The Westerner's most often and most justly criticized trait - that of pursuing restlessly and recklessly abstract conceptions of improvement - gives him an immeasurable advantage in world affairs and even in his home affairs over the Chinese. To live, or if necessary to die, for an idea the success of which might enable others to benefit, expresses the height of the ludicrous to ordinary Chinese mentality. Yet this unaccountable oddity in our nature, this youth-spirit of inheritance, so often a terrific penalty upon the individual, has placed our race where it is in the world today. The lack of it has placed the Chinese where they are in the world today, and will probably keep them there.

It is a situation for which we have no parallel in world history: A country knee-deep in blood, every province squeezed and looted by endless successions of tyrants, millions of people killed and tortured and starved aimlessly from year to year, while tens of thousands of college and university graduates on the scene, of the same race and language and history, look on and do nothing about it. And it is an equally unparalleled situation in world history that not one of these tens of thousands of college and university graduates - in the unthinkable contingency of wanting to do something about it - would know where to turn for a trustworthy leader. Certainly no such unselfish leader is in evidence on the scene in China now. And if one were to appear, his familiarity with Chinese character would be enough to teach him that he could find no really trustworthy supporters - not one whom he could trust not to stab him in the back, after he had made a little headway, in order to gain his position or his money. In all the other great upheavals of which we have record there has been at least one patriot fighting unselfishly, so that the strife was in some respect a clash of principles. But there is no clash of principles in China, and there is not one leader under whose banner a patriot might enlist. Rottenness all countries know - but not the one hundred per cent rottenness that the record shows in China.

The group recognized as the central "government" in China is called in jocular parlance the Soong Dynasty, because of the prominence of the Soongs in the leadership. The most respected, perhaps the only really respected prominent member, is T. V. Soong, who is usually minister of finance. T. V. is the son of a Wilmington, North Carolina, Chinese who made good. One of his sisters married the famous Dr. Sun Yat-sen, who is called the father of the Chinese revolution of 1911, which changed the country from a monarchical nonentity to a chaotic absurdity. Another of T. V.'s sisters married Chiang Kai-chek. All the Soongs were educated abroad. Chiang's wife is a Wellesley girl. T. V. Soong himself is a Harvard product. All the Soongs are classed as "Christian," and call themselves such. The anti-Christian literature of the government they head is not an inconsistency to bother with.

Domestic strife has characterized the Soong family in the matter of politics. Chiang Kai-chek was until a few years ago strongly communistic, and worked with the Soviet agents lent by Moscow to communize China. At that time Borodin, special Russian envoy, was in a sense dictator of the Chinese central government. When this arrangement broke up, as all political allegiances do rather quickly in China, Sun Yat-sen's widow furiously denounced Chiang, who had quarreled with Borodin. She hied off to Moscow to cool her spite, and has stayed there a good deal of the time since. She is evidently strongly communistic, and has had little to do with the rest of the family since communism was taken out of the national party platform in 1926.

Chiang is a "Soong" only by marriage. He enjoyed no foreign education and speaks little English. He is the military kingpin of the group, doing such fighting with his army as is necessary to hold the power for the lot. T. V. Soong enjoys a creditable reputation among foreigners in China. He is the one forceful and prominent member of the central "government" who has shown signs of wishing to act in a manner benefiting the country as a whole. Chiang looks very much the opportunist as his career is scanned, a general who, while not an out and out plunderer like the majority in China, is nevertheless not past working against policies of loyalty in order to get everything possible for himself. T. V. Soong appears to have progressive notions of things that might be done for the country as a whole. His main work is nursing the finances along so that the revenues meet the monthly blackmail needs of the military moguls who must be paid heavily for withholding battle against the central regime. Loans of the past have been" defaulted, so that new loans have been difficult or impossible to get.

The main reliance of the Chinese central government in money is the customs receipts. The Chinese customs are managed by foreigners by a special arrangement introduced some seventy-five years ago, at the wish of the Chinese monarchy. It has recognized that the foreigners possessed adequate integrity for the work, and that with a foreign inspector-in-chief and foreign inspectors in the various ports, an honest accounting could be expected. This has proved correct, and this service, still manned by foreigners, functions as smoothly as our own, with regular remittances from the central office to Nanking. It is interesting that not one of the contending factions in China, with all their propaganda of anti-foreignism, has demanded the abolition of foreign customs supervision. The reason is that all parties benefit from it. It is impersonal, and the returns are never questioned as to honesty. The central government benefits by having a revenue it would not otherwise be able to collect, since it controls only a fraction of the territory of the country. The rebel leaders, who in most cases draw handouts from Nanking - a sort of blackmail - realize that if the impartial foreign supervision of customs were abandoned their handouts would be less or nothing. Many Americans are employed in the Chinese customs. It is a career service, with a fair salary and a retirement pension. Americans and British, I believe, compose most of the official personnel.

Eugene Chen is the mainstay of the Nanking crowd in matters of foreign affairs and national propaganda. Eugene is a Trinidad, South America, boy who has made good in the land of his ancestors. Of the Bruce Barton journalistic type, he is handy in merging a tone of piousness with materially profitable expediency.

He writes English idiom vastly better than he writes Chinese, and much that he says in print for English readers has the slangy ring of a professional Broadway publicity man. He is the personification of enterprise. In America he would be a wildcat oil well promoter, a grapefruit real estate salesman or a Ponzi. In Chinese politics he has been the alternate friend and enemy of everybody so many times nobody can keep count. He has espoused everything and attacked everything.

When the Canton "government" - which off and on refuses to recognize the central "government" - opposed the boycott of Japanese goods, the ever-ready Eugene lined up with them and went on a secret mission to Japan during which he is said to have solicited Japanese support against the Nanking regime. The Japanese refused to have anything to do with him. That failing, Eugene returned to Nanking and got a job with the pro-boycott government as Minister for Foreign Affairs - his favorite role. In 1916 Eugene Chen was imprisoned for being anti-Japanese. In 1926 he was "Minister for Foreign Affairs" for a rebel Canton government. In 1927 he was "Minister for Foreign Affairs" for a rebel Hankow government. Then a rival rebel government in Canton offered him the same post. He left Canton to take the identical job with the Nanking government. But all along, since 1928, he has been an official of the Kuomintang.

In historical accounts of Chinese politics it is necessary to fix particular days or weeks during which each eminent Chinese politician was in power. They go out for a day or a few weeks to join enemy factions, then resume their "loyalty" where they left off. The whole Soong gang went out for a month at the end of 1931, when students "demonstrated" and demanded war on Japan, which would certainly have been suicide if the Japanese had taken such a declaration seriously. The Soongs did not try to attack the central government, however. Later Chiang Kai-chek called the students bluff, and asked the able-bodied ones to step forward as soldiers for the war they demanded. At that you couldn't see the students for dust. They jumped like a Valkyrie leaping an octave. That reminds me that at the same period, down in my town, Foochow, the verbally indignant students drew up a pungent manifesto demanding military training. The demand was recognized and military drill begun. Then a few hot days came along when the students sweated and rankled as they drilled, and they promptly drew up another manifesto demanding the cessation of the tyrannical military training imposed upon them - an "interference" with their rightful duties as students, they explained.

At Canton last year some differences arose one day between the local head of the army forces and the local commander of the naval forces, so the army leader ordered fire opened on the gunboats, and for a part of one morning the two shot it out in the harbor together, the rain of shells endangering neutral shipping. The navy lost honors and fled to Hong Kong, British owned, and hugged the protecting harbor until the usual number of days elapsed to "settle" the dispute and make the two allies again. Chang Hsueh-liang made himself war lord of Manchuria, operating the territory as his own private preserve, and warning China to keep her hands off. The Chinese central government outlawed him in return, unable to dislodge him. But a little later the Japanese dislodged him in a few days with 10,400 men against his 200,000, and Chang, well-to-do after his political services for cash and country over that large area, sailed for Italy with a score or so of his prettiest girls, named on the passenger list as secretaries. Wellington Koo, former Columbia University debating team man and Phi Beta Kappa wearer, is not intimately of the charmed circle. It is appreciated by whatever gang comes into power, however, that he is an excellent property piece for the diplomatic set-up. He is a thoroughgoing opportunist, but so far as his commonly known public record goes nothing very outrageous has come to light against him. My own impression is that he had the keenest mind of all the Chinese I met in the country. He looks a bit Jewish around the eyes, and has the jerky Max D. Steuer manner. The Chinese use him off and on as a foreign ambassador, a job in which he makes a good showing. He is evidently too cautious to tie up too closely with anyone faction.

The list might be extended indefinitely, with personal sketches that are very illuminating. I have mentioned a few of those whose names appear most often in the news dispatches.

There are, off and on, two or three self-proclaimed "central" governments in China, each at the same time claiming to be sovereign. Much of the time in recent years Canton has disclaimed allegiance to Nanking. In Szechuen province there is the famous General Liu, who does not go in for foreign recognition, but lives and rules like a king, with outrageous oppressions, over his fifty million or so peasant peons. He is a sporty figure around the race tracks and revels in the society of foreigners. He keeps his own army, of course, with able foreign advisers, and his own fleet of airplanes. Nanking is afraid to tackle him. Yunnan, away down in the south, next to Tibet, is practically inaccessible from most of China, and that area is independent of Nanking. In the south-central part of the country, in Kiangsi Province and the adjoining half of Fukien, there is a stronghold of Communists. Their weakness is that they have no port. Several times they have threatened Foochow, and last year got within about ten miles of Amoy, but have never yet reached salt water. They deal direct with Moscow and fly the red flag with hammer and sickle. Last year they started extending their territory toward Canton, alarming the moguls down that way who wanted no poaching on their preserve. A considerable Cantonese army was sent against them, but several thousand of these defending troops were offered better pay on the Communist side, and promptly deserted to them. A fleet of twenty airplanes was sent to the defender's front, but these were not used. The Chinese anti-Communist general in command sent back a complaining report that when he was ready for the planes, to take the field, he found his soldiers had stolen all the portable parts - spark plugs, etc. - to sell for pocket money. This he looked upon as simply an unfavorable act of Providence, against which he could not be expected to make headway. But having got enough loot to satisfy them for a while, the Communists retreated into the mountains and everybody was happy again.

Presumably America and other foreign powers recognize the Nationalists as the Government of China for no better reason than that they happen to hold Nanking, the Chinese capital. Years ago all the legations settled down at Peiping, the former capital. When the Chinese moved the capital to Nanking, some hundreds of miles south, the legations did not move with it, but stayed on. The climate is better at Peiping, and everybody in the diplomatic circle there was too comfortably established to pack up. Besides, arrangements exist for guarding the legation quarter there, and it would have been a bother to arrange defenses in a new place. So for the foreigners, Peiping, home of all the ministers, is the capital of China, while for the Chinese, Nanking is the capital. However, everything else is so crazy in China that this trifling inconsistency is not noticed. For a while last year the Chinese said their capital was in a third place, Loyang. What they need is a capital mounted on a truck trailer or a barge.

The territory controlled by the Nationalists cannot be fixed by definite geographical limits. It might be estimated at a tenth of the whole of China. Their great strength, as mentioned, lies in the fact that the foreigners recognize them as the government, and remit to them the customs money with which they hold their position. The Nationalists often keep their own lower grade employees in the government offices months behind in pay in order to keep up payments to rival factions threatening to make trouble. The number of factional independent or semi-independent "governments" in China is impossible to total. The major ones, embracing a province or more, vary as alliances are broken and re-formed. There are generally a dozen or so of these. But within some of these major divisions of the country there are petty rulers, practically autonomous in their areas, who control territory from the size of a few townships to several counties.

The fighting in China is Chinese, and that means it is peculiar. Very little of it is fighting to a finish. The numbers slain in actual combat are astonishingly low in relation to the total forces engaged. Between two armies of approximately 50,000 men each, say, one may completely rout the other with no more than two or three hundred killed on both sides. The Chinese soldiers have little courage for determined conflict. They lack the exhilaration in strife, the blood lust of possible victory, that characterize the Japanese and some of the rest of us. And then they have nothing to fight for in a sense of vanquishing somebody else. The soldiers are in the army they happen to be in order to eat. They are there to escape death by starvation. Why should they risk it by bullets?

Military big shots who are rivals with adjacent territory exist for long periods in a state of enmity without arriving at a mood for outright battle. Their front ranks will have skirmishes now and then, with a few casualties, but the main armies will remain poised for months in torpid indifference, neither making a really serious offensive move unless the other threatens invasion of his territory. That is something serious. Usually it can be stopped by the go-betweens, the "friend pigeons" who make interminable trips from one camp to the other, bargaining down the amount of money that is to be passed to square things, naturally adding in a little to keep themselves. These "friend pigeons" are one of the foremost institutions of China. Every Chinese is on occasion a friend pigeon to some other Chinese, and as often relies upon another for himself. Everything from murder to marriage involves go-betweens, for Chinese have a strange dread of mixing words face to face over a difficult issue. All matters are approached with the most roundabout deviousness, so that in extremely precarious affairs a third person may be asked to tell a fourth person who will relay the intended message to the other party of the issue.

But the friend pigeons do not start business until one general has felt out the strength of the other. And if one general possesses fairly preponderant strength, that does not mean he will attack. He reflects that he might lose, and in military affairs the Chinese prefer to sacrifice a little money in a cash present rather than risk everything in a campaign. Now and then an especially determined leader will wage a real fight. At the news that such a person is on the warpath, the others commonly flee before him with scarcely a sign of resistance. A vigorous positive attitude outrages the sense of propriety of the average Chinese, and fills him with such a dread that he usually retreats in terror before it.

Of course, with three million men on a war footing, and most of the time theoretically engaged in campaigns of groups against groups, a good many are bound to be killed. But the deaths among the soldiers are upon the whole microscopically few. The havoc is among the civilians in the territory occupied and overrun. Evidently most of the loss among these comes from starvation, after their "friendly" armies have stripped them of everything to eat. The following figures, as a sample, were given by General Yo Yingchin in May of 1931, in the matter of the activities of the Communists in Kiangsi and Hunan provinces:

In Kiangsi -
Men killed...............186,000
Refugees dead............2,100,000
Homes burned.............100,000

In Hunan -
Men killed................72,000
Homes burned..............120,000

In November of 1932, Hupeh Province reported (from the governor) the following results of Communist ravages there:

Refugees homeless.........3,500,000
Homes burned .............98,000

These figures represent but a small fraction of the total area of China that has suffered from almost continuous fighting during recent years. There is no reason to doubt the general reliability of these figures. The generals, however, do not state how many additional civilians were starved or burned out by their "protecting" armies. In much of the Communist border area the natives declare that they prefer the atrocities of the Communists to those of their rescuers. Missionaries' families familiar with the dialect and the local conditions reported this true in areas I inquired about myself. In Fukien Province I saw hordes of fugitives coming by foot and by boat from their home areas, routed by the advancing Communists, and from the reports they gave the havoc was impressive. In Fukien there was no general massacre anywhere, so far as I learned, nor was there in Kwantung, adjoining, but the Communist methods were such in torturing persons suspected of possessing money and in killing outright those evidently prosperous enough to be regarded as "capitalistic" that the populace usually fled before them, with a good deal of starvation resulting. It is something to get used to, in China, to reckon with catastrophes in terms of millions of lives. In any serious flood or famine year the victims' drowned or starved will run into the millions. In the one campaign of modern times in China where there was persisting vehemence in fighting - the Taiping Rebellion - twenty million persons perished. That total is approved by reliable foreigners who viewed the havoc. It ranks as the most stupendous slaughter in all history, exceeding in direct deaths the losses from the WorId War. Today in a few parts of China the population has not recovered its density, after two generations, from the Taiping massacres, and the land seized by surviving peasants is held in a sort of feudal manorial manner, with the holders hiring coolie labor from other areas to tend it. But during the present century, and through most of their past, the Chinese have not followed initial victories in the Taiping manner. Losses from exposure and starvation in the constant strife, however, may be believed to exceed in China in the last fifteen years the total killed in the World War.

It is rare in present Chinese strife for a victorious army to pursue a defeated foe vigorously. Advancing into conquered territory both the officers and the troops tend to eat and rape their way into a lazy lassitude. And then there seems to operate a really characteristic instinct against pushing anything to termination. Chinese dread finality. They prefer to keep matters dangling, with definitive action eternally postponed. The strategy of settling things by striking while the iron is hot, so to speak, never seems to enter into their military calculations. Hence it is common for an army to set out against another with all sorts of ballyhoo about intended annihilation, yet when the two armies clash along the skirmish line, both will lapse into a torpid poise, and remain face to face for months with nothing happening. The soldiers of each army will fraternize with the other, with many desertions across the lines both ways.

I remember that a great deal of publicity attended the arrival in Fukien of the Nineteenth Route Army, which had given a surprisingly good account of itself at Chapei against the Japanese. Tsai Ting-Kai, the commander, was going to exterminate the Communists. The Communists heard he was coming, or for some other reason retreated. Tsai waited for a while, evidently ascertaining that the Communists had really evacuated, and then showed up. The Communists had retired before Tsai finally arrived with his troops. In the Chinese press, and also in America, he was given great credit for "routing" the Red Army. I know personally the falseness of this, because I was in Amoy at the time the Communists were making their drive toward it, advancing to within about ten miles of the city. Two American gunboats and half a dozen or so other foreign gunboats were there to protect the International Settlement, and, if anything, this foreign show of force kept the Communists back, well before Tsai Ting-Kai was on the job. But a welljustified supposition was that the Communists had merely made a raid on a nearby town that was a concentration depot for opium, and having reached this had planned to retire in any case. Tsai made no attempt, it appears, to follow them. He stayed near Amoy to "consolidate his position." Later it was reported that he had cleared the province of the Reds, utterly incorrrect, as during the present summer, more than a year after, the Communists in Fukien have advanced steadily, and hold more territory than ever. Tsai himself stayed at Amoy, in the southern part of the province. But during the summer seven thousand of his men came to Foochow allegedly to attack the Communists from that angle. The Communists were about a hundred and fifty miles inland from Foochow at the time. Between them and the newly arrived Nineteenth Route, "Defenders of Chapei," was a semiindependent army under a fellow called Liu Ho-ting. General Liu refused to let the troops of Tsai Ting-Kai travel across his territory to attack the Communists or anybody else. The territory was his own, it was his livelihood, and he wanted no poachers. He threatened the Nineteenth Route boys and they set about digging trenches near the west gate of Foochow to meet his advances. But as usual, only a few soldiers were killed in skirmishes, and the two armies remained in their habitual suspended animation for months. Meanwhile, the press reported the fierce onslaughts of the two cooperating forces of patriots against the Reds. The Reds, having raided the lower country and got all they could, were far back in their mountain retreat in western Fukien not worried about either. Of course, Nanking knew very well that Tsai Ting-Kai's "loyal" troops would be denied passage through the stamping ground of Liu Ho-ting's "loyal" troops. Liu Ho-ting knew that if the Nineteenth Route Army ever got into his terrain they would contrive some trick to oust him and use the territory as their own looting ground, forgetting about Communists. Sending Tsai-Ting-kai and his Nineteenth Route Army to Amoy and Foochow was accepted by everybody concerned, even the Chinese acquaintances of foreigners on the spot, as nothing more than the strategy of Chiang Kai-chek to get rid of a rising rival by banishing him to a province from which no passable highways provided ready escape, five hundred miles from a railroad and hemmed in all around by mountains.

And a word regarding the defense of Chapei is illuminating. This bit of fighting was hailed all over the world as an evidence of finally achieved Chinese unity and "national spirit." I was in Shanghai during that fighting, and reliable information gathered on all sides was very much in contrast to the heroic accounts in the cabled news. Chiang Kai-chek had been at outs with the Nineteenth Route leader, Tsai Ting-Kai, for a long time. The battle of Chapei was to a considerable extent the result of a maneuver which enabled Chiang Kai-chek to have the Japanese defeat his rival for him, saving himself both risk and money. Chiang would not support the Nineteenth Route Army after the four weeks' battle began. Not only did he not support it - there is evidence that he actually menaced or fought the Nineteenth Route Army in the rear while the Japanese were pounding it in front. Positive statements to this effect were given me by a careful investigator for one of the foreign governments, himself an official whose name appeared often in international news, and whose reliability in the matter is scarcely open to question. It was understood at the time that some of the American war correspondents then staying at the Cathay Hotel in Shanghai and cabling "human interest" stories were perfectly familiar with this warfare within the Chinese ranks, but let the news alone because news appetites in America were geared to a high pitch of sentimental admiration for the heroic Chinese, and to upset that would introduce too jarring a note. Anyway, whether Chiang's men actually menaced the Nineteenth in the rear or not, certainly no other Chinese generals came forward to assist Tsai Ting-Kai in his unwanted five weeks' struggle against the Japanese. And after he made a stand that impressed the country and the rest of the world, Tsai was sent into practical exile down in Fukien, from which he could not readily get out to threaten Chiang or anybody else.

George Sokolski is the only writer in whose comments I have seen any hint of this absurdity of "unity" among the Chinese at Chapei. "Chiang waited while Tsai fought," he said in an article in July, 1932, in the New York Times magazine. Foreigners in China often express the wish that Sokolski, whose command of facts is of foremost excellence, would relate more of the attendant circumstances in mentioning occurrences. The private methods of Chinese leaders are often more illuminating as to conditions than the bare historical facts of what they do as expressed in their open letters, treaties, victories and losses. But this exposure of significant details is the most difficult thing to get out of China. Nearly everybody who knows them is too tied up with one allegiance or another to speak out. If George Sokolski had torn off the brakes and set out to expose Chinese politics and military affairs in terms of personalities as he knows them, his book would have gone far toward smashing the vast superstructure of American sentimentality, built upon information incorrect and incomplete, that endangers our whole Far East relations.

As for Tsai Ting-Kai, now hailed by the world as China's foremost patriot, I am ready to bet that within twelve months he will be opposing the central government at Nanking. Keep the point in mind and check it if you believe there is an honest Chinese general. And speaking of the "inadequate training" alleged regarding Chinese leaders, one of the subordinate Chinese generals at Chapei was a graduate of West Point. His record? During the battle he walked unattended over into the Japanese area with a brief case full of military plans. The Japanese took the plans away from him. The general in question reported back at his lines that he was "looking for the American Consulate" to pay us a courtesy call!

But turning back for a moment to the Nineteenth Route Army in Foochow, a coincident errand of theirs in the locality, it was noisily announced in Nanking, would be a determined effort at the eradication of bandits. The bandits dominated most of the country on the south side of town, across the river. Unable to head west against the Communists, the Nineteenth had a good opportunity to do anti-bandit work. But 7,000 of them idled in the city for week after week without ever crossing the river to the south bank, where a gang of a hundred or so bandits was terrorizing a wide area with looting, kidnapping and murder. Delegation after delegation of village elders came to appeal for assistance against the bandits, all without results. By climbing a little ridge back of my house I could look over across the water into the bandit lair, where the hundred cut-throats ruled unchallenged. In the other direction I could look down upon the headquarters of the famous 7,000 bandit eradicators, not one of whom could be induced to cross the stream, while the pillaging and burning continued week after week. The 7,000 fanned themselves, looked torpid and hookwormy, played mah jong, and made their peace with what the day offered. That is China.

And from the same ridge mentioned I could look across a city landscape where a score or so of foreign educational enterprises reared their steeples and turrets and immense dormitories above the sea of sway-backed slate roofs about them - where for seventy-five years ever-increasing mission programs of science, civics, sociology and ethics had carried into higher social enlightenment thousands and thousands of "earnest and promising" Chinese. All around, thousands of these admirable graduates lived, between the steeples topped with crosses and the sunny white pagodas, and fanned themselves, and read John Dewey and Bertrand Russell (if they had continued to read at all), and like the soldiers, played mah jong and fanned themselves, and drank tea, and like them did nothing. That, too, is China.

It is a lamentable but true observation that about the only people doing anything in China are those doing harm. This does not deny that there are Chinese in China who are sincere in deploring the present condition of the country. But they are talkers and not men of action. Proof of their uselessness as a class is found in the fact that there is not under way a single significant movement toward practical improvement. They talk chiefly to others of the same mind, where their talk is unneeded. The educated Chinese are prone to professional diagnosis, and occupy themselves with scholarly discourses calculated to show to people equally scholarly and already in agreement with them that improvement would be a good thing. Convincing one another of what none would dispute is the principal avocation of the group called patriotic.

As for the small shopkeepers on the scene who can read and write, the clerical employees of the big tongs, the more prosperous independent farmers and the artisans, they never appear to take into account in their comment the likelihood or even the possibility that matters will improve during their lifetime. Better conditions, of course, they would like to have, but centuries of frustrated hopes to make life more tolerable dictate acceptance rather than a probably futile resistance to conditions as they are. The Chinese show no impatience, because so far as they are concerned its uselessness has been demonstrated. This view of their present plight, characterizing as it does the very class of Chinese who might by collective effort improve the present state of affairs, provides some explanation of the continuing chaos and why this chaos is likely to last a long time. Potentially the so-called "educated group" may be important, but there is a very heavy underscoring of the potential needed, and such a consideration shifts speculation far into the future. In China, from Chinese, you hear among the educated that "conditions may change," and this is heard so regularly that finally the fact dawns that the speakers do not expect anybody to change the conditions, but that sometime the conditions may change of themselves. And that is the way Chinese regard about everything, except making money. They know money does not make itself, and so each puts ample personal energy into making all he can. In that objective they are the world's champions of industriousness. Their day and night endurance in tasks where profits are good and assured, especially after they emigrate to a peaceful country, is past belief. A Chinese will still be going strong when an emigrant Jew or lunch-counter Greek is panting with his tongue out.

If there are any patriotic, enlightened, practical and ambitious Chinese who really see what ought to be done, they must be miserable, because intelligence of that degree will reveal to them the futility of attempting it. No one with a good and workable plan in China could be convinced that his fellows would support him in any collective effort. Even less could he believe that if the plan were to achieve initial success, his fellow-participants could resist the opportunity to turn the power so gained into advantages of personal enrichment and oppression of the masses, repeating the past all over again. Few in China today would readily believe that a self-proclaimed patriot who ousted the incumbent would himself be an improvement.

Chinese history, especially since 1911, suggests quite the contrary. The number of men who have climbed into the political saddle on high principles to stay there by low practices makes a melancholy roster. If there have been exceptions, they were men of such faint force that they left little mark of their presence upon the course of events in the country - which is a way of saying that China's microscopically few good men are too weak to be felt. All the immediately foregoing facts are rather generally appreciated among China's so-called "leading educated group," and their innocuousness is not astonishing. Actually they do not form a "leading" group. They are not leading anything. Tactically they are in conspicuous retreat when they are not rendered actually invisible by their inertness. Of those who make themselves heard, those who have anything hostile to say about Canton are commonly prudent enough to say it in Hong Kong or Shanghai or Nanking, and those who have unkind words for the moguls around Nanking are usually careful to begin by buying a ticket south.

But there really appears to be very little opposition to any military leader or faction in China except what comes from rivals anxious for the same privileges. Opposition in the sense of public spirit is confined mainly to student or returned student groups. Those who make themselves heard are commonly termed "radicals," and correctly so, for what they clamor for is usually patently preposterous. For example, thousands of them paraded and pamphleted for immediate declaration of war against Japan when the Japanese began taking over Manchuria. The Soong group and the rest of the Nanking group handled the Manchurian matter about as well as circumstances permitted. Certainly their method of giving in reluctantly against overwhelming strength was better than a useless war and a prompt defeat. Furthermore, no sort of cooperation could have been expected, even from the noisy patriots, had war been declared. Patriots in China, generally speaking, are those who have not been favored with the opportunity to be anything else. The Japanese have usually been able to buy what they want from any Chinese. With a general war in progress against an enemy with money, vast numbers of these erstwhile patriots could be expected to sell out as Chinese "patriots" have been selling out to Japan for decades.

Enthusiasms for a cause disappear quickly at the sight of ready money, and that fact has written much of Chinese history in the last forty years. I have heard in China indignant abuse of the Japanese for thus buying out various public men on the Celestial side. To us that seems a strangely misplaced criticism. It seems to take for granted that almost any public man in China will sell out if offered adequate cash, a fact that has been proved. Scholarship in China is emphatically separated from the stern and daring spirit that belongs to command. A son selected to be educated is by tradition exempt from labor in the home. The Chinese dislike physical exertion, and hence what they do not get by economic compulsion they do not get at all. The calling of a soldier is considered one of the lowest. In the eyes of the self-respecting Chinese of the old school, whose outlook still dominates, no commendable motives were ever associated with the profession of arms, and rightly so, when we recall the objectives and behavior of Chinese armies.

These considerations have a direct bearing upon what at first seems the incomprehensible impotence of the right-thinking Chinese to make any headway against their opponents and oppressors. To compare the physical frailty and torpor of the average student reformer with the muscular vigor and sturdier bearing of the mountaineer bandit-soldier is to compare more than two physical types. One is a timidly protesting spectator talking to an apathetic and skeptical audience about high-sounding changes. The other is a positive force with a fixed purpose, however unfortunate that purpose may be for his fellows. The reformer has no recompense except risk, perhaps a few dollars now and then for a repetitious article in a newspaper, and the satisfaction that his utterances coincide with the thinking of Confucius, Sun Yat-sen, Jean Jacques Rousseau and Woodrow Wilson. The bandit or soldier has his promise of ten dollars Mexican a month - more if he can loot it - a rifle with which to forage among his own people for food, and the prospect of opium and plunder. From these direct objectives and his rougher nature the bandit or soldier derives his superior positiveness. To the Chinese masses, the rifle and the fierce savagery of the soldier type are impressive realities. The talk and elaborate reasoning of the tortoise-shell-spectacled, consumptive-looking student seem in comparison a hollow lot of nothing. Furthermore, recalling the debauchery of the language mentioned in connection with missionary difficulties, the high-sounding words of the student reformer are not very unlike those used by the military moguls and bandits. All parties proceed under announcements of lofty aims in China. But what does a military chief with a record of success offer? He announces that if the city now held by General Ping Pong can be taken, it will be turned over to the army to loot, and all the girls therein turned over to the army's disposal for any Romeo and Juliett notions they may harbor, Chinese style. And pending this achievement, the recruit owns a rifle as a meal ticket and is now and then, tardily, given a few dollars to keep him from deserting to General Ping's side. And more likely than not, the general about to attack General Ping Pong will have caught on to the pious slogan business himself, and avow purposes indistinguishable, so far as language goes, from those employed by the reformers. For many years now every kind of devilment has been perpetrated by leaders utilizing exactly the high-sounding language the coolie hears from the reformers. But the finality is that the leader in the field, known rascal that he is, assures the coolie of something immediate, and the frail city reformer, himself afraid to show his face outside the boundaries of a foreign settlement, offers nothing tangible at any time.

Heedless toward the vague and disconnected appeals of small reform groups for collective action, 395 million Chinese - out of a possible population of 400 million - constitute the most easily intimidated people in the world. Day after day advantage is taken of this submissiveness by bandits, war lords, pirates, wholesale extortion gangs, and duly accredited provincial and central government officials, on a scale probably never before paralleled in the world's history. The magnitude of the looting and the intensity of the cruelty appall even persons well prepared by previous knowledge of Chinese conditions. The powerful independent military chiefs, with their own staked-out territory held by their own mercenary armies, manufacturing their own munitions, and retaining in many cases their private foreign military advisers - Russian or German veterans of the World War - are dominant nearly everywhere. The nooks and crannies their looters do not cover are infested by droves of villagers turned bandit.

In very few parts of China is travel safe for a peasant ten miles from where he lives. At home he has perhaps placated the familiar gang of extortioners or bandits recurrently preying upon him by paying over most of what he earns. But at a little distance he may encounter a new gang of robbers, unwilling to recognize previous payments. Among these he is as likely as not bayoneted out of mere irritation that he has nothing. When one gang of bandits extends its territory and drives out the "home" gang, renewed payments are demanded, irrespective of the fact that the old gang has picked the territory as clean as a whistle. For this reason, Chinese peasants are always in dread of an invasion from without, even when it is an invasion of government troops. The newcomers will make new demands. And as the country becomes steadily poorer, the bandits and government armies and independent armies make fiercer and fiercer demands in order to maintain their revenues, while the peasant and village tradesman has less and less with which to meet them. There are no peasants in China not preyed upon either by armies or bandits. At least ninety per cent are preyed upon by both.

The Consulates in China gather all the news they can of local conditions. Inquiries are made of persons who have just come down river, of foreign merchants who sell goods to native dealers who pack it over the mountains by coolie, of persons requested to interview refugees from devastated areas, of missionaries who risk travel outside the protected ports, of boat captains surviving piracy, all to learn of developments within the consular district. Reports are exchanged among the various consulates, and periodically copies of reports from all the consulates in China - we have a score - are sent to the ministry at Peiping. These reports, the most accurate day to day moving picture of Chinese affairs, make a staggering presentation of what is going on. The total is past belief, and its melancholy vastness is not less impressive because it is uncovered in the staid, archaic language of diplomatic conservatism. "I have the honor to report -- ," and there follows with the matter-of-factness of a census book a summary of recent conditions. The somber magnitude of such an immensity of grief is of dimensions beyond good and evil. It is simply a stupendous chaos of despair and agony. To blame those who perpetuate it for what they do is only to blame them for being Chinese. Those who suffer within it but suffer from the momentum of aims, good and bad, proceeding from unseeing ancestors whose attempts at wisdom could not envisage the catastrophe of their ultimate failure. For forty centuries they clung with intense determination to the values they saw. Now we see those aims of forty centuries of the world's oldest civilization reap nothing but agony in the success of their persistence. Looking upon it all, seeing today millions of Chinese crushed down by a ponderous glacier of things cherished in the past from which now they do not know how to escape, in the building of which they had no part, we feel a mood of Oriental detachment easing our first impulses of vehement censure. In the light of their past the Chinese are so much a distillation of all that has gone before, that a spirit of accusation seems as aimless as to kick the bush that tears our trousers. So we push on to review them critically, impersonally, as one of the world's most absorbing and significant phenomena, human it is true, but toward whom we feel no more personal rancor than Noguchi or Erlich felt toward the streptococci and trypanosomes they watched under illuminating microscopes. This attitude is itself somewhat Oriental, since we are forced to accept that what we look upon is an assigned destiny, ordered by forces unknown, which we cannot change.

The spectacle in China is one of immense differences between theory and practice, because the Chinese have always professed, more ardently than any other people, a profound veneration for learning and a resolution to be guided by the beacons of philosophy. In the Chinese language "teacher" is a title of honor, and is applied irrespective of any tutorial relationship. The economic and social order of the country never permitted any considerable number of persons to be educated, even in better days, but those it did permit were honored in a manner exceeding that accorded in other countries to any class except royalty, and the tradition still persists. The daily speech of the people is filled with proverbs extolling learning, with admonitions to be guided by the words of wise men. But now, as often in the past, words in China compare very feebly with the efforts of those who tackle issues with bayonets. And as mentioned before, the looting gangs are heavily stocked with men who have attained a high level of Chinese classical scholarship and others who have been educated in leading European and American universities.

I asked a university graduate who had just returned to China after ten years of advanced work in sociology, government, and what not, at Syracuse and other American universities, why he proposed to identify himself with the racketeer element instead of the reform group. He answered that he did so because under present conditions there was no other career open in China in which he could expect to make a living, and that he was merely doing what others similarly situated felt obliged to do.

Strangely, the Chinese seem to remain unbelievably credulous in spite of living in the midst of continuous treachery. Generals and bandit chiefs are constantly being lured to the enemy's camp on the pretext of a compromise. Once there, in the midst of a feast of reconciliation, they are suddenly set upon and murdered. I knew personally of two such occurrences within a few weeks of one another in one city, and I heard from time to time of others. The larger cities in China have something called police, of course, as even in the most short-lived tyranny a show of authority must be maintained to keep things going. But the police are next to useless for anything more than parting two ricksha coolies snarling the traffic with their quarrel. A Chinese employed in a foreign firm I knew was prevailed upon by his foreign employers - somewhat against his will, as Chinese dread going to the police - to notify the authorities when he was threatened by a gang of extortioners. The police consented to guard his house, and did so for a few nights. Then, very decently I thought, they told him one day that they had private information that he was to be attacked at home that night, and as he would appreciate, if there was going to be any trouble around, they didn't want to be mixed up in it. The man took the hint.

The police must play safe in such cases, aside from their desire to stay out of danger. In any issue that results in court action, extortion by the officials will be brought to play in a manner to get all possible out of both sides. Effective bribery therefore might discredit the testimony of a policeman, and by way of face-saving he would be dismissed or even hauled up for judgment and extortion attempted upon himself. The Chinese motto is, make no official enemies and run no risk of making any.

As night guards, however, the police are of some use in stopping suspicious persons - petty thieves or burglars of no standing. Certainly without them, poor as they are, foreigners would be much worse off in China than they are. Most of the time persons on the streets late at night will be stopped. Martial law, with a curfew hour, prevails much of the time, too, and the police are useful in enforcing this among the riff-raff. Their authority is dreaded by the average city sneak or burglar who lacks the money to get out if he ever gets into jail. The small thief knows that the penalties are terrible if he is caught. Execution without trial is extremely common. The police, to give themselves a show of zeal, naturally deal with severity toward those who have no money.

When our chief clerk at Foochow was threatened by a gang of extortioners last New Year's, the police would do nothing, even when our clerk knew by name and address the persons threatening him. He was extremely reluctant to ask the police protection at all. A few days later the gang tackled him on an open crowded street and beat him badly. Still the authorities would make no arrest, nor assure protection, though the extortioners continued to live at their usual abode and made no secret of their threats.

In their exemption of privileged gangsters from attention, the police in China are considerably worse than those in certain American cities. The Chinese courts, naturally, are incomparably worse than anything in American cities, acknowledging the full revelations of the Seabury report and everything else that has come to light. They are worse than anything the average American can imagine. Our courts let off powerfully financed racketeers and fraudulent bankers rather commonly, but in the main our failures of justice fall down more from mushy sentimentality, credence in quack alienists, dumb juries, and public soft-heartedness than from actual malfeasance of officials. The same causes do not assist criminals in China - certainly not sentimentality. There bribery is present in practically every case in native Chinese courts, except to some extent in Shanghai, Peiping and Tientsin, where it is still wholesale, though not as bad as elsewhere. Bribery is a polite term. Judgments are bought and sold like beans or flour. And, of course, the Chinese police are open to wholesale bribery, whereas in civilized lands, bad as conditions are in some places, a considerable number of the police are incorruptible, while public opinion operates to make them all wary of too flagrant graft. In most respects there is no comparison at all between law enforcement in America and China. Anywhere in America the police will answer a call for help in cases of robbery or assault. They will not in China.

Perhaps the most generally oppressive practice in China is that of farming out the tax collection privileges to the highest bidders. This is done in "government" territory. The tax collection privileges are sold by districts and hsiens - a hsien is a small division something on the order of a township. The successful bidder is required to turn in a specified amount. But he can collect as much in excess of this amount as he pleases and keep it himself. He can hire his own soldiers, too, to coerce objectors. The result is what would be expected. The tax collector's tenure of office may be brief, so he squeezes all he can out of an already poverty-stricken and many-timeslooted population. He needs a retirement fund in the event that politics change - a practical certainty.

Methods are accordingly cruel. Outrageous levies are loaded on in a spirit of simple plundering. Persons appealing for mercy are punished or shot down. Levies often amount to confiscation of all a family possesses. At times families are subjected to abominable cruelties merely because a previous tax collector has entirely cleaned them out and they have nothing with which to meet new demands. No sentiment of indulgence mitigates the lot of those oppressed in this fashion. A Chinese not dealing with his own family or with a close ally is a thoroughgoing fiend unhampered by scruples of any sort.

The following is a tax proclamation of which I saved a copy:

a) Poppy cultivation tax, total allotted.............. $800,000
b) Anti-Communist levy, total allotted............. . 400,000
c) New house levy, divided into following allotted totals: (1) first class, $2,000 (2) second class, 1,500 (3) third class, 1,000 (4) fourth class, 300 d) Bridge levy for construction of bridge at South Gate of City, total allotment decided on ....................$3,000,000
e) Superstition levy, temple processions, consulting of spirits on behalf of the sick, prayers, services by priests at funerals, etc., from $1.50 to $50. f) Recruits levy. For example, the country within four li of the town should furnish 200 men, levy in lieu thereof, $6,000 per month. So many recruits should be furnished by each section according to its size.
g) Levy for destruction of city wall................. $200,000
h) Levy for construction of magistrate's court house - (amount unknown).
i) Public sale of opium (Public Sale of Opium Bureau established and each village compelled to purchase greater or less amount of opium according to its size).
j) Bamboo and timber levy, ad valorem - figures illegible.
k) Potato cultivation tax - 10 cents for each 100 plants. l) Young pig levy - 40 cents for each pig of weight about 15-20 lbs.
m) Cooking stove levy - 50 cents each month for every stove. n) Opium lamp levy - monthly license for unlawful smoking, from $20 to $50.
[a list of thirty-two additional taxes follows]

These taxes fixed by Chen Kuo-hui, brigade commander at Chaunchow.

The translator of this, incidentally, was Ivan Harding, now British Consul General in Tsinan-fu, who is one of the best Chinese scholars in the British service, along with being a most entertaining raconteur of odd anecdotes after a lifelong career all over China, from Kashgar on the Turkestan frontier, to misty posts on the Yellow Sea. Massacres, famines, endless civil wars, wholesale butcheries and civil oppressions such men long ago came to take for granted.

They have no illusions about China. When Harding dropped in at my house at tea time one day to say good-by, before he left for Tsian-fu, there happened to be on the table a book I had just ordered from Shanghai, "Twenty Years of the Chinese Republic: Two Decades of Progress," written by a visiting Ph.D. who had made the rounds of a few missions to hear their ebullient accounts of advancement. Appreciating his attitude after thirty years of service in a land steadily crumbling to pieces knee-deep in blood, I handed the book over to Harding and asked if he would like to read it. "Progress!" he shouted. "Progress! [he called it proe-gress]. In China? My God, take it away!"

The title of the same book, "Chinese Republic," struck everybody who saw it as highly amusing. Of course, there is no republic in China. The thing we call a government is a sort of rickety dictatorship, with nothing remotely resembling an election responsible for the present positions of the leaders. It will be observed from the tax proclamation that the poppy cultivation tax and the opium tax are merely measures enforcing the planting of opium and the compulsory purchase of such opium as the local dictator elected to assign - at his own sale price. The other taxes are simply the regular devices of extortion. The funds were naturally never applied or intended to be applied according to the categories listed. This fellow Chen Kuo-hui was one of the innumerable small semi-independents in Fukien. His territory was perhaps thirty miles across. After watching his collections by such methods over many months, the head moguls at Foochow, to whom Chen Kuo-hui was vaguely subsidiary, summoned him to Foochow to talk "politics." Like most Chinese, he was very gullible, and responded by zooming into town in an airplane. He was promptly seized and held secretly in prison, being tortured, so Chinese informed us, to make him reveal the hiding place of his immense loot. The idea of rectifying the administration certainly did not enter into the case, for those who seized Chen Kuo-hui were perpetrating the same kind of tyranny themselves, and also supporting other tyrants like him in the business in different parts of the territory. The common people get nothing in return for these levies - no school system, no law protection, no improvements, no anything except more oppression. The high-sounding purposes announced in the proclamations amount to nothing after the head looter has collected the cash, stayed as long as he could, and then absconded to a new territory, leaving the country picked clean for his successor. Chen Kuo-hui was said to have been executed after several weeks of torture. I never heard whether or not he revealed the hiding place of his cash collections. There are hundreds of Chen Kuo-huis operating all over China. A picture of the set-up in Fukien, which I came to know best from a longer period of residence there than elsewhere in China, may serve to typify Chinese conditions generally. I may justly employ the word typify, because seeing copies of reports from other districts in China I judge that elsewhere conditions were equally bad, and in some places worse. Here is Fukien: A sub-tropical area very roughly as large as Virginia, mostly mountainous, no railways, no through roads; transportation by river full of rapids to some 250 miles inland, taking ten days or two weeks. Two ports on the Straits of Formosa, Foochow and Amoy, Foochow forty miles up a river from the sea. The western third, more or less, of the province has been held for years by Communists, who now and then make a raid into the lowlands, usually during the spring or summer when the opium harvest has provided money to go after. Every time the Communists advance, which is every year, the missionaries at the inland stations hurry down river to Foochow or down the creeks to Amoy and stay until they have gone. The middle northern part of the province is held by an independent general, Liu Ho-ting, who works vaguely in alliance with the so-called provincial government, which in turn is independent but theoretically allied alternately to Nanking or Canton, the two rival cities claiming "central" governments. Amoy is held by a Cantonese Army, the one that resisted the Japanese at Chapei. Now and then Cantonese troops come to Foochow, but they cannot penetrate the country up the river, as they are defied by Liu Ho-ting. The northeast part of the province is, or was when I left last spring, held by the marines as their private preserve for loot, uncontested recently by any other army. The so-called governor of the province last year played along strategically with both Liu Ho-ting and the marines to force the planting of opium on a colossal scale, the soldiers distributing the seed to the farmers with coercion to plant them, and the profits at harvest being split all around. This year it is said that the Cantonese Army around Amoy has discouraged poppy cultivation. The governor of Fukien, after the opium money was all in, resigned last year and a new one took his place. The Chinese Navy was allowed its share of the opium money by the privilege of establishing an "inspectorate" in the river just below Foochow, where incoming junks and sampans, bringing cargoes of opium, were searched. Carriers were "fined" for every pound found aboard, then with a stamp on the opium showing that the "fine" had been paid, the opium was brought on to Foochow to be marketed.

There are half a dozen or more dialects, practically different languages, spoken in the province. Natives at Foochow cannot understand natives from areas twenty-five miles away. (Variation of language in South China is more marked than in the north. In North China, Mandarin, the language of official intercourse for the whole country, is understood nearly everywhere by the common people.)

Slavery in Fukien is fairly widespread, though no figures, or even acceptable estimates, are available. This applies to most of China. Slaves - other Chinese - are not held by individual owners in large numbers. They are men and women and children sold, usually, under duress of poverty. As well as I could gather, slavery is hereditary, and the child of a slave is a slave in the family where the parent is owned. There are possibly as many slaves in China now as there were in America before the Civil War. Any estimate, however, is a guess. Evidently the hereditary feature is commonly invalidated by the practice of taking women slaves as concubines. In any event, there is no distinct class of slaves, seemingly, long perpetuated from generation to generation.

Despite the almost complete chaos in Fukien, a few improvements were being made, requiring a tiny fraction of the immense revenues collected by oppression. In Amoy and Foochow, the waterfronts were being renewed with stones. At Foochow a dirt road was being laid across the rice fields to a mountain about five miles away, to which the officials liked to go in summer to cool off. A street was being widened in the city. Inland from Amoy some road-building was under way, presumably to enable army trucks to take munitions to strategic places. The explanation of these improvements, in a country where next to no law prevails, is complicated. It may be said briefly that a number of educated Chinese engineers, many foreign trained, obtain employment in one way or another, generally by family influence, in the so-called government. These men are interested in construction work, and get small appropriations now and then. Of course, no reimbursement is made to the farmers and villages whose property is destroyed or damaged by these few public works. A streetwidening operation cut away a good part of our chief messenger's house, for example, and thus destroyed much of his life savings. No provision, even in theory, exists for compensating such owners. Public works in China are the dread of the natives where they are contemplated. But fortunately this menace is slight. In Foochow, the government told the natives that the imperialistic foreigners were forcing the construction, and that under the circumstances, subjugated as China was, they could do nothing. This explanation added to the mass resentment against foreigners. One explanation of the road building is that most of the officials - all the wealthy ones - now have automobiles, and need roads to use them. Ordinary Chinese streets are impassable by automobile. Around Foochow there were no roads, with only narrow foot bridges over the creeks and canals. It may be said that, upon the whole, next to nothing is shown in return for the ruinous levies upon the population. The improvements under way in all Fukien, with its 30,000,000 or so population, would probably total less than those going on in a normally prosperous American town of 25,000 people.

I should mention, for the picture of Fukien, that heavy tolls were demanded by the various military outfits upon freight shipped up or down river. Every few miles, at times, there was a military post where toll was collected - usually it was called a "bandit protection" fee. In between the bandit protection stations along the route there were in many places, much or most of the time, bandit toll stations which required a percentage to let the cargo pass! The soldiers manned the stations in the towns and the bandits manned those between the towns. The two did not often molest each other. By this custom, the cost of goods often doubled or trebled by the time they reached an inland destination, where there were further exactions to be met from the local tyrant in command. Foreigners sold at Foochow to native dealers who arranged their own transportation, except for the Socony Vacuum Company which had its own boat for traveling up and down the waterways making deliveries, not proceeding into the more hazardous zones, and arranging its own guard of a score or so of soldiers for each trip. At that the Socony-Vacuum was repeatedly pirated, or its cargoes stolen on arrival. In one instance the official of a small town seized a cargo and sold it on the spot to the inhabitants. The Consulate "protested" these outrages, but nothing could be done under existing American policy toward the Nanking group. The local faction could have stopped the lootings or obtained redress at any time with a little pressure, had our State Department put such pressure on Nanking that Nanking would have demanded action of the gang in Foochow. As mentioned, the Foochow politicians draw an income from Nanking, and are reachable by that route, though ordinarily independent. "I'd subsidize any American who would tell the public at home the truth and help us get a little protection for legitimate business," declared one American business man angrily in connection with the outrages mentioned. I am afraid my own remarks will go unsubsidized, however. I mention that speech of indignation, rather characteristic of the business attitude among Americans in China, to illustrate the point that, whereas uninformed writers in America often suppose that our corporations "exploit" the Chinese, the sad reality is that American concerns do business in China under more severe encumbrances than anywhere else, with enormous losses because they have not the privileges of simple civic rights and police protection. Losses from piracy, looting, and the expenses of private guards have bankrupted dozens of American firms in China. They lose, too, from absconding employees and defrauding dealers, as they would not in a country where legal recourse was possible in apprehending culprits. Conditions have been steadily paralyzing trade and the situation is growing worse.

People ask, how is any trade possible in such a country? The answer is that the coast ports and some of the Yangtze cities have sufficient foreign protection to make warehouses and trading offices halfway secure. From these, goods are sold to Chinese on the spot. They reach remote points by the methods of toll mentioned, and by smugglers who can evade these. Goods are brought from inland in the same manner. So as long as the port cities are kept reasonably safe, trade can be kept up half-heartedly.

These port cities with some foreign protection are growing very rapidly in population, because of the attraction they hold for Chinese who wish to escape from the vastly worse conditions everywhere inland. A Chinese with money finds it wise to live in a port city. This causes a certain amount of local prosperity, expansion in new building to house the newcomers, and the erection of shops to take care of the wants of those who have been abroad and have acquired a taste for foreign luxuries. The profiteers from the looting, opium traffic, and the like add to the spending, so that with the interior being steadily drained of resources, and kept washed in blood, fictitious signs of prosperity are seen in the shopping streets of a few cities. This deceives many foreigners who make brief visits to the country, and who conclude from seeing plate glass windows being installed and new moving picture houses going up that China is making swift strides. But for every plate glass window a thousand peasants perish, and every bloated official's automobile means countless families destitute - back there, over the hills and up the rivers, where live the 395 out of the 400 million.

Between and within the territories of the marines, the provincial independents, the Cantonese Nineteenth Army and the Communists in Fukien, countless bandit gangs occupy mountain valleys as their own or live high up among the rocky crags here and there to descend upon lowland villages as opportunity dictates. I have already mentioned that on the south side of Foochow a bandit gang ruled supreme over an area perhaps fifteen miles wide. With their characteristic apathy, none of the larger forces was especially interested in clearing out bandits upon its borders or even in its midst, unless they gouged too deeply into the loot, and trespassed by going after some of the big stakes like opium.

All the forces were active in getting what they could out of the people. The bandit leaders seemed to last the longest - not uncommonly for several years. The military leaders with some pretense of government seemed to last the next longest. The civil politicians in league with the latter - the governor and so on - changed most often. Some of these changed every few weeks. I use the term "governor" because that is the nearest approximation in American politics. Actually there is no governor. The position is one of gubernatorial functions, theoretically, but is best translated in the strict sense of the word as "chairman." Positions lower down are similar to cabinet positions. Sometimes there will be one or two subordinates of relatively good records serving under constantly changing chairmen of the racketeer type. Presumably they need the money their salaries bring, and then even the "good" Chinese politicians maintain a variety of private graft, not necessarily tyrannical and oppressive, and not regarded as unbecoming in China. One of the men in the Fukien Provincial Government was looked upon as one of these moderates. He was a man of impressive dignity, a Hanlin some twenty years ago, the revenue going in part to repay the loan. Our Hanlin scholar, however, was finally ousted.

*scholar - one of the highest and rarest of old-time Chinese scholarships - and was a shade more agreeable to deal with than the rest. About the worst reported of this fellow was that he was a big salt smuggler, salt being a government tax monopoly, supervised by foreigners for a loan made

*Han-lin is translated as "forest of pencils," a figurative title typical of Chinese taste for imagery in names.

We met now and then, at Chinese feasts or foreign official receptions, the contact men of the local Chinese official roster, and on such occasions the conversation was necessarily in the plane of high compliments, innumerable gambeis, and a complete ignoring of all the indignation, irritations and accusations which would resume again the next day. The party and government they represented was antiforeign, but their speeches were of the flowery kind usual in diplomatic intercourse, further elaborated by traditions of Chinese etiquette. Foreign responses were in the same key, lauding the greatness of China, and referring to long-standing international friendships. Nobody believed anybody else - less still did anybody believe himself. We knew their trickiness and incompetence, and they resented us for our more smooth-working organization and unmatchable instinct of cooperation.

Such were the features of political and military affairs in Fukien, and of our official connections with those who by title and theory dominated those affairs. Fukien has a population of possibly twenty million as a low estimate. Multiply the population by twenty and reduplicate the scene as many times, with changes of geography, and you have a rough approximation of China.

Over the embroidered tablecloths, set with flowers, upon the inner terrace of some serenely wealthy Chinese, over feasts of ducks' tongues, pigeon eggs, sharks' fins and birds' nests, amid the gambeis and relays of ready servants, there was no hint of the plight of China. We would get that next day, and every day, in the accounts of missionaries down from up-river, in seeing the swarms of refugees nearly naked in the streets, in the droves of soldiers idling everywhere, in the tales of frightened house servants, in the lepers and other beggars who lie along the paths to the temples, in reports of this or that person killed or kidnapped, in the angry complaints of pirated shippers - ad infinitum. All were and are the flesh and blood of China, still rolling along as it rolled four thousand years ago, with but a few altered chips and varied eddies upon the surface of that ponderous yellow current.

"Kindness and_love are also a part of China's high morality....In the practical expression of the fine qualities of kindness and love, it does not seem as though China were far behind other countries....Faithfulness and Justice - Ancient China always spoke of faithfulness in dealing with neighboring countries and in intercourse with friends...the quality of faithfulness is better practised by Chinese than by foreigners" - thus writes the late Dr. Sun Yat-sen, who after several attempts to assassinate him, and after he had been tricked out of all he had worked for, has for the lack of anyone better become accepted as the prophet and saint of the modern Chinese. And as mentioned, his San Min Chu I, from which the above is quoted, is their bible. So much stuff similar to that quoted above has been written by Chinese authors, while dodging the bullets of other Chinese and being looted out of house and home, that foreigners reading it have come to accept such grand spirituality as the guiding force of China. Repeatedly Sun Yat-sen has had to flee to Japan. Once when he was in exile in England he was caught by an abducting squad under orders from the Chinese Government to seize him for execution. He was at great risk rescued by a British friend - a happy circumstance which prolonged Dr. Sun's life long enough to permit him time for a written diatribe on what a contemptible race the British are. Once again in China a British resident saved his life and gave him refuge from his own people, fortuitously enabling Sun to continue his vehement propaganda against the British there. I have never encountered in any of his writings any acknowledgment to individuals or principles for these trifling and perhaps embarrassing services.

To the Occidental observer, it is an illogical inference that the Chinese love peace purely upon the evidence that they are invariably beaten in war. And yet we have no other evidence. Left to their own devices, as soon as the first signs of relaxed authority appear, they go at one another's throats like cats and dogs. Searching their history, we find that this was always so. "And then for three centuries anarchy prevailed..." - thus runs a sentence from one of the standard works of history dealing with China, referring to one of the innumerable long sessions of chaos in their past - a past which Chinese writers without the slightest regard for truth allude to as one of beautifully tranquil simplicity. And even in times of governmental authority, Chinese domestic strife seems to us to exceed that of any other race, with suicide the spiteful expedient on a vast scale of wives driven to distraction by the tyranny of husbands against whom they have no recourse at law, and with clans ever squabbling with clans, to all of which traditionally corrupt mandarins rarely offered any solace of justice. Chinese life, civic and domestic, is, in actuality found to have been a thoroughly gory and turbulent affair by any scholar who cares to pore over the mass of journals, court gazettes and chronicles of their past.

Flowers of beautiful words from a subsoil character of muck and inertia - what contrasts! In a land where the stricken and injured are passed unassisted by thousands along the streets, where a boat is not halted to rescue a man drowning, where every native organization and activity is permeated with a spirit of suspected and confirmed treachery, where suicides for spite are the wholesale recourse of a people having no redress at law, where a humble peddler bringing you a few dollars' worth of lacquer ware must be attended along the streets by a bodyguard of six, where officials hold for ransom serum intended for the poor, where your servants are afraid to go out of the house unless you accompany them, where old peasant women are seized and used as pack animals by lazy soldiers under foreigneducated officers - there the educated men, safe in foreign settlements or as refugees abroad, write essays and poetry upon the inspiring love and kindness of the Celestial Soul. Perhaps some of our bright Freudians can figure all this out according to the failure of attainment and the dream world of escape. In any event Chinese writers are either intellectually insensible or woefully dishonest in acknowledging what is wrong - the first step in imaginable recovery. Most foreign observers lean to the dishonesty conclusion.

To a traveler or former resident returned from China, no question is more often asked than, "When and how is it all going to end?" The answer is that the informed observer on the spot sees no evidence that the Chinese chaos is moving toward any conclusion any time soon. And to one accustomed to Chinese temperament and Chinese ways, it is a very Occidental suggestion that anything disagreeable must have an end. That is our philosophy, and it has generally worked with us. But it worked because of forces in our inner nature - forces of cooperation, sacrifice for ideas, and a conquering courage among accepted leaders. None of these forces exists in Chinese character in amounts to be looked upon as significant.

In China things distressing are not ipso facto things certain to pass away. Through the centuries of their racial experience billions of Chinese have lived and suffered and died without seeing substantial mitigation of the many ills preying upon them, and it would be an absurdity of optimism of which few present-day Chinese are guilty to suppose that in this generation these ills will pass, or that they will ever pass. Personally, I have never seen any signs of impatience about the matter among average Chinese. For so long, apparently, have they thought of life in terms of survival that the luxury of its being comfortable is omitted from consideration.

Thus it is practically certain that the masses cannot be roused from this apathy to any assertion of resentment against their oppressors. We find that the average Chinese have little or no conception of fundamental rights, according to the theory developed in the West during the seventeenth century and expressed in mass movements in the eighteenth - the theory that every individual is entitled by the fact of birth to certain privileges, to restrict which is unlawful tyranny in another. The Chinese masses look upon what we should call justice, if they get it, more as something fortunate than as something to which they are entitled. Oppressions, conversely, are more misfortunes than injustices. Being looted is about like suffering from a hurricane or other force of nature. So here, among the masses, we have the inertness of ignorance. Among the educated, the great majority of them, we have the inertness of indifference, each looking out for himself, but unconcerned with the whole.

That brings us back again to the recurrent observation - that about the only people doing anything in China are those doing harm. They pursue direct personal ends, vigorously, and their personal ends maintain the chaos in China. Opposition to them is negligible. We have noted already the factors pointing to futility in any opposition.

Where would the opposition recruit its strength, granting the miracle that several Chinese patriots could carry through a campaign without assassinating one another? The student radicals definitely will not fight. Nobody ever heard of one enlisting in any army. Coolies can be recruited galore, but they want to fight for money and loot, not for an idea. Furthermore, a "righteous" army, with loot and plunder forbidden, would be distasteful in itself.

And then each semi-independent province, dominated by a military leader who can live like a king on his spoils, would be a nest of bitter opposition against the introduction of a new regime whereby this leader would be demoted and have to take his place sacrificially with the common herd. We see the opposition to any improvement in the general structure relatively powerful, with the forces in favor of any improvement tragically weak. Educate them to a better conception, say the missionaries. That has been tried and it has failed.

The one practical solution offered is one that is least likely to be adopted. This is that an impartial foreign constabulary, composed of units from neutral nations - small unconcerned countries like Denmark, Sweden and the like, if necessary - be assigned under a Hague or Geneva compact to help restore order in China. With this international nonpartisan police force there should be some sort of nonpartisan judiciary to handle the incidentals of civic justice. Equally essential would be an international nonpartisan board of revenue to supervise tax collections and disbursements to such public projects as require them.

In such an enterprise, with foreign cooperation, direction and equipment, recalcitrant tyrants here and there could be routed in short order, for where force is known, Chinese temperamentally are not disposed to test it personally, but flee or compromise before it - just as 200,000 Chinese soldiers fled from Manchuria with scarcely a show of a struggle at the news that 10,000 Japanese were coming.

By such means, within two years or less, most of the worst could be eliminated in China. Chinese are not difficult people to govern - where authority is definite they are among the least troublesome of races, and if not peace-loving, they are under competent administration significantly peaceobserving. The idea in this proposal is that for a fixed period, five years or ten years, the international constabulary would do patrol work and maintain supervisory administration in China, then relinquish the business into Chinese hands. It is safe to say that eighty per cent or more of China's population would welcome the innovation. The overwhelming majority have no impractical notions of self-reliance. They are willing to work, and all they want is tranquility in which to eat what they earn. They do not care who is boss, just so they are let alone. They do not care what flag they are under, nor whether they are under a republic or monarchy.

The improbability that anything as intelligent will ever come about needs no discussion. I mention it as the one suggestion of those advanced which is worth discussion as a hypothesis of improvement. Obviously the Western world would not seriously propose such an expedient, however useful it would be in a humane way to hundreds of millions of human beings now perishing from outrageous oppression. We have traveled far in sentiment since a quarter of a century ago, when an international commission was clamored for to stop reported wholesale atrocities in the Belgian Congo. The business of being a brother's keeper is very much out of fashion now, and there is a reluctance to interfere, though we see in progress, over the fence, all kinds of bloody woe visited upon members of the human family who are not responsible.

If the handful of sincere Chinese patriots were intelligent in a practical way, probably they would request this kind of assistance, in the manner that medieval kings often called upon one another to lend a hand in affairs at home. But we do not expect that. We do not, in fact, crave very passionately to mix in the business at all. With sad results in Cuba, the Philippines, and Europe, we are just now in a mood to stay in our own yard. Our voice is forceful in Far East affairs. Without American support the project of an international constabulary, a sort of League of Nations nonpartisan army, could not be adopted. Hence it will not be. The four hundred million in China will continue to bleed in the hideous chaos maintained by a few thousand of their own number.

Conditions in China may fairly be called an equilibrium of chaos for the reason that such forces as are visible are pulling against one another in a manner to limit and neutralize the power of each. The positive forces, as emphasized, are all substantially bad. Yet if even one of these deplorable factions could rise to a strength of complete ascendancy, it might provide something definite upon which to direct hopes and efforts for improvement. But no faction shows signs of achieving this supremacy. Elsewhere I have used the analogy that the contending factions are like a tug of war with a dozen ropes fastened at a common center, upon which each pulls with his single radial strand against all others.

Underfoot, trampled upon by these tyrants, are the mass of the people. Collectively they are vastly stronger than their oppressors. But they are innocuously inert. They have no will, no cooperation, no loyalty. And when by chance one among them does rise up, he too becomes a trampler, a tyrant, and seizes his strand to pull against the rest, forgetful of whence he came and of those who still endure what he himself so recently suffered. It is indeed an equilibrium of chaos, with four hundred million in distress, and no end in sight.

Chinese opium addicts
Chinese opium addicts. Chinese invented the method of vaporization necessary to smoke opium


RELIGION is the opium of the people, say the Soviets. By way of maintaining their uniqueness, the Chinese have no religion, but they have plenty of opium. A review of this regrettable circumstance in all its ramifications is important in any presentation of the Chinese at this time. In April of this year there was ratified at Geneva a narcotics limitation convention. This convention had been drafted in July, 1931, and had been hard fought pro and con up to the very month of its ratification. It provided for strict supervision of manufacture and sale in all ratifying countries. The aim was to keep large European drug manufacturers from selling enormous quantities to the smugglers who operate secret carrier systems and get the drugs by such methods into countries where manufacturing is under strict government surveillance. . Anyone who takes literally to heart the supposition that contending parties at Geneva are all earnestly doing their honest best, but merely fail to "understand" one another will find the minutes of this narcotics contest enlightening. Well known chemical combines of continental Europe fought the attempt to restrict narcotics to legitimate channels as vigorously as they could, by methods underhand and overhand, and to a disgraceful extent their governments backed them in efforts to maintain their profits in the face of universally obvious injury to society. The United States was a pioneer in the restriction movement, having long exercised control over vicious drug manufacture here, and the movement was finally carried principally through American diplomatic efforts. World budgeting and international checking of manufacture and distribution are soon to become a reality, by all evidence, and this achievement is one of considerably more significance than brief press mention at the time of the ratification indicated. So much for manufactured drugs, which will be mentioned later in this chapter.

China's drug problem is not primarily one of laboratory-prepared drugs. It is a problem of raw opium, an agricultural product easy for the Chinese farmer to grow. The Chinese peasant is out of reach of anything or anybody in Geneva. In most of China he is out of reach of his own central government. He is subservient only to the local political racketeer, bandit chief or military mogul who is temporarily in tyrannical authority over him. And whether the temporary tyrant is specifically of the political, bandit or military breed, or a combination of all three, it is a good bet that he is on the lookout for cash to hold his armed followers together, and a little extra for an eventual retirement fund.

Better than anything else available, opium provides reliable ready cash in China. It can be secreted easily if need be, or transported simply even in a country where camels and ponies and coolies furnish the main transportation. And a greedy market, built up through the years of a plentiful supply which has created millions of addicts, is always waiting. Chinese like their opium in pipes, and smoking is general in nearly every part of China. Even in the highly foreignized Shanghai, if you walk about at any hour of the day or night you may catch, here or there in the narrow native streets, a whiff of the peculiarly acrid, almost spicy smell of an opium pipe. It is unmistakable after it is once identified.

No figures show how many opium addicts there are in China. From the prevalence of smoking among all classes, and from the colossal acreage planted annually in poppies in every part of the country, the number must run far into the millions. In areas I have known, the general estimate among foreigners, including the veteran missionaries who live close to the people, was that approximately three-fourths of the men of the coolie class smoke opium. In some parts of China the estimate is lower, in some higher. Of this total a large fraction, perhaps a third, show the marked ashiness of skin, the poor muscular flexibility, the abnormal emaciation and the strained, staring eyes of the advanced addict.

In areas where opium is grown in large quantities the price is low enough to make smoking extremely prevalent, and the practice is correspondingly less general in areas distant from the poppy fields. From all evidence, surveying the whole of China, the number of chronic opium users ranges somewhere between 30,000,000 and 50,000,000.

Fukien last year yielded an unusually heavy crop of opium, bringing prices relatively low. A single pipe in the coolie class dens, with the use of a bench on which to lie while the pipe is smoked, costs between one and two cents in American money. Even these low prices are sufficient to make a serious hole in the family budget of an addict. A ricksha or burden coolie does well, throughout most of China, to make ten cents a day. Hence two or three pipes a day, perhaps a fair average for a regular smoker who is not at the "fiend" stage, make an expensive item.

Thirty or fifty million opium addicts in China may seem at first a staggering estimate in relation to a total population - one out of perhaps twelve or eight. Yet over large areas the number of smokers is higher than one out of eight. And as most of the immense annual crop must be consumed in China, some approximation of the number mentioned would be necessary to dispose of it. In Fukien province, the opium poppies made up last year a more or less continuous field throughout the lowland country over an area some one hundred and fifty miles long. More land was devoted to opium than to food crops in some districts.

The testimony of missionaries indicates that the situation is, if anything, worse in some provinces than in the southwestern territory. Missionaries from remote parts of Szechwan, which is a province of 70,000,000 population on the upper Yangtze, told me of constant caravans passing their stations carrying opium to market, with from fifteen to twenty ponies in a caravan. In Yunnan, a high and remote province on the far inland border of French Indo-China, opium is produced on a large scale, as it is also in Kweichow, next to Yunnan, and in Shensi, in central China. Reports from Kansu indicate that every available acre has been given over to opium in the northern part of the province. Information from Hupeh, Honan, Hunan, Shansi, Chekiang and Anwhei suggests that opium cultivation is less extensive in these provinces, but by no means absent. The climate is somewhat less favorable in Manchukuo, but large

Ways That Are Dark 263 amounts have been grown there in recent years. The effects of Japanese occupation on production remains a matter of conjecture. We may expect a decided limitation. In Formosa the Japanese have a government restriction and license system.

After reading China's affectedly earnest commitments in various international conferences to the effect that all possible steps have been and are being taken to eradicate the opium evil, amazement is often expressed by persons in this country when they are first acquainted with the wholesale scale of Chinese opium production and consumption. The Chinese bitterly opposed an international inquiry into their opium situation two years ago and succeeded in preventing it. With the valleys of China white with opium poppies every spring, Chinese delegates abroad have blandly denied the obvious facts.

The following appeared last June in the Chinese papers all over China: "Strict and faithful enforcement of the various laws and ordinances promulgated by the government regarding the suppression of the opium evil is called for by a mandate issued by the national government June 18. The mandate threatens severe punishment to officials who are negligent in the enforcement of these laws and ordinances....They must not regard such as dead laws, to be treated only as pro forma and ignored de facto....Should any official be found guilty of negligence in the enforcement of such laws, thereby affecting the welfare of the people, he will be prosecuted and punished severely in strict accordance with law."

That is rather typical. At the time of this edict the opium crop harvested in the spring was moving to market all over China. In Foochow, where I was at the time, the Chinese navy was operating an "inspectorate" station in the mouth of the harbor, searching incoming junks and sampans for contraband. But far from confiscating any opium found aboard, the navy merely "fined" the carrier for each pound of it and allowed him to proceed with his cargo.

A detail more significant, perhaps, was that the poppy planting all over the province had been ordered by the provincial governor, as he would be called in an American state, a Mr. Fang Shun-tao. Fang ordered his soldiers to distribute the seed all up and down the lowland country where the crop grows well. Farmers were informed that land not planted in opium would be severely taxed, and the methods generally employed amounted to compulsion. By this grim tyranny an enormous acreage was diverted from needed food crops. At large, public opinion among the villagers was against planting opium poppies. They knew only too well the strife and hardship that opium production invites. But of course the military under Fang triumphed and there was a bumper crop.

A favorite device of the military in China who enforce poppy cultivation is to invoke a previously disregarded law which declares that opium is illegal and extort money from the farmers on this pretext when the crop comes along as a "fine."

This method was followed by Fang and his henchmen to whom he had farmed out the tax and fine collection privileges. Farmers who had planted under compulsion, by provincial orders, suddenly had invoked against them the dead letter orders from the Nanking central government, whereby poppy cultivation is illegal.

In one case a group of farmers came to ask the provincial government for mercy. They complained that even if they sold all of their possessions, including their wives and children, they could not meet the tax demands of Fang's agents. The answer they received was an order to the soldiers to open fire on them - and the confiscation of their poppy crop.

Shortly after the crop was harvested Mr. Fang was able to retire from his provincial governorship and fade into prosperous obscurity, joining the scores of Chinese officials who make an exit in this fashion every year. Resident foreigners report compulsory poppy planting over most of China. In parts of Shensi eight out of every ten acres of the irrigated land were reported planted in opium by compulsory measures there in 1931. Average opium dens in China are not the affairs of Oriental splendor arranged by imaginative motion picture directors. They are commonly nothing more than dirty and nearly bare rooms, dark and hideously dingy and smelly, without so much as a single cushion or pillow. Inside are bare wood benches, and by the benches little tables to hold the lamps and tea. Among coolies doing hard manual labor, like carrying freight on a march, the effects of opium appear to be at first more stimulating than otherwise. Those accustomed to smoking opium will halt abruptly at intervals, seemingly fagged out, and demand time off for a smoke. The smoke over, they jump up as lively as ever, ready to resume work.

After a few months or years, depending upon how much they can afford, a gray, ashy pallor creeps over them. Smokers then lose their appetite for food and seem to find nourishment only in more opium.

While China's drug problem is preponderantly one of raw opium, manufactured drugs are known to be increasingly filtering into the country. From time to time heavy consignments of cocaine, heroin and morphine are seized in the International Settlement at Shanghai. The sale of any narcotics except for medical use is forbidden in the Settlement and in the French Concession adjoining it, but vast amounts are bootlegged in to supply the local Chinese demand and for attempts to smuggle the drugs out to other countries. But as an apology for the drug-ridden plight of China as a whole, such claims are ridiculous in view of the vast acreage of opium poppies either sanctioned or made compulsory every year by Chinese officials. Drugs smuggled into China are but an infinitesimal quantity compared to the opium produced there. Said the Chinese Minister for Foreign Affairs before the opening of the Geneva conference in 1931:

"During the last two years China has exerted great efforts in the suppression of the traffic in opium and other dangerous drugs. Up to date many new regulations have been promulgated....The effect of these regulations is most encouraging."

In the matter of the many new regulations promulgated, the minister was strictly correct. But the object of these, like many Chinese "laws," is to deceive the world. Enforcement of them is not intended.

No progress can be expected from China in the near future so far as suppression of the opium evil is concerned. Yet a sincere and coordinated effort undoubtedly would accomplish much. This was proved in 1906, when, under the monarchy, a plan was instituted to decrease production by onetenth every year for ten years, with warnings to addicts to begin breaking themselves of the habit. Marked improvement was reported. China's widely talked about road-building program is largely designed for the transport of opium. Opium explains much of the recent activities of General Tang Yu-lin, Jehol's chief, of news cable fame. He strenuously attempted to play off China against Manchukuo in order to preserve Jehol, which under his regime has been pretty much a private opium garden, from control by either nation. The Communist drive toward Amoy last year was unanimously conceded to be a drive for the opium loot just after the spring harvest. It stopped at Chuanchow, the main opium concentration point in that area.

China may be said to be wide open in the matter of opium sale, except in the foreignized cities, with conditions varying from open licensed shops in most places to speakeasy joints, in others, connived at by the local racketeering officials. The Chinese are a long way from the system of government license and strict supervision that appears to be working satisfactorily in Malaysia, the Dutch East Indies and India, where opium has been for long a vexation, if not a major problem of economics and government.

In the way of unofficial efforts to mitigate the menace in China, several organizations distribute posters warning persons not to contract the opium habit. In the foreign-built Y.M.C.A.'s for the Chinese, for example, there are posters of the series type, showing the happy home and then the wreck of the family after the father takes to opium.

But with the anarchy that has settled over most of China, it is futile to hope for any immediate solution, or even any prompt improvement in the problem. At large, reports from observers all over China indicate that opium production is increasing. As long as the present chaos demands cash for China's 3,000,000 - odd personal soldiers, it is certain to remain huge, and subtract a tremendous total annually from needed food acreage.

The magnitude of the opium traffic in China is incredible to persons who have not seen at first hand its far-reaching grip upon the population of the country. Shortly after my return to the United States a New York editor desired an article on opium. From careful checking of all available figures, which my own observation and inquiries into China tended to confirm, I wrote that the number of addicts there would run between thirty and fifty million. The surprised editor asked if I minded his checking this seemingly high estimate against the opinions of other persons familiar with the problem. The editor forthwith telephoned a man who had spent half his life in China, and who had served with one of the commissions of inquiry into the Chinese opium problem a few years ago. His reply was that my own figures were decidedly conservative.

In areas he had visited, he said, not only the men and women smoked opium, but very often the children did also. Whole villages were given over to its mischievous influences. Such wholesale addiction naturally depends upon a low price. But where the extortions of the government officials and independent military chiefs do not amount to virtual confiscation, the price remains within the purse range of the humblest families. And once the habit is contracted, all possessions are disposed of if need be to gratify the craving for more opium, with all thought of the future recklessly dismissed.

By all that I can gather, prices have been a little higher in the last two or three years - since the time the man mentioned made investigations on the scene. His work, incidentally, took him into nearly every cranny of China, into places impossible for a foreigner to penetrate today. Of course, human life is plentiful there, and even without opium no incentive exists for the great majority to live lives of worth and self-respect. Where the family ancestors lived in a state of abasing poverty, and the traditions of the land require no more of the individual than that he imitate his ancestors, there is naturally little of the force we call self-respect to check impulses leading to misery and ruin. But death by the opium route is painful. Among the very poor, almost inevitably the addict reaches the end of his meager financial resources while he is still alive. He sponges on any relatives that are better off if he has such, but even this expedient is in time exhausted, only to leave him with ruined health and an overpowering passion for more opium which he is unable to satisfy. The hysterical distress in this stage is said to be extreme past description. The end comes with starvation, death from exposure, or suicide.

But intermediately the addict will endeavor to join a bandit gang or get into an army, either of which over most of China will offer fair opportunities for a sufficient amount of opium. Soldiers are paid directly in opium in some armies, as mentioned previously, and where they are not paid in opium the privileges of looting it are usually good. Opium finances at least threefourths of the fighting in China. The opium problem is hence a serious contributory cause in the persisting chaos of the country. Obviously not all the opium addicts reach stages of frenzy; it affects different individuals differently. And then lack of money keeps a good number from ever reaching the state of chronic craving, though they arrive at the point of needing a few smokes a day to keep on with their daily routine. But reliable observation from many sources confirms the view that hundreds of thousands of men are driven annually into predatory pursuits by opium, in addition to those who take up banditry or soldiering from other motives. The last investigation into the opium situation in China with published findings was undertaken by the Shanghai Evening Post and Mercury in 1931. But in 1932 I conducted an investigation by questionnaire into the same problem myself. A list of questions was mailed to a selected list of thoroughly reliable persons over various parts of the territory under review. The answers, in many cases admirably explicit and illuminating, made remarkable reading. These, however, were strictly for office records, and are thus not available for specific reference or quotation here. The fact is men- tioned to emphasize that very careful official inquiry served merely to confirm in particulars what was generally evident and conspicuous to everybody. No one would need an official questionnaire to ascertain the main details of the opium situation in China, nor any other outstanding phase of the Chinese muddle, though the daily official routine serves to corroborate what is recognized by all thinking foreigners close to the realities.

Mr. H. G. W. Woodhead, annual editor of the China Year Book, and one of the foremost authorities on contemporary China, if not the foremost, managed the survey for the newspaper named above. In the introduction to his published findings we are treated to a very interesting historical review of the opium traffic in the Flowery Kingdom. In this we are reminded that difficulties first arose over opium importations into China early in the eighteenth century. In 1729, when the trade was largely in the hands of the Portuguese, the first anti-opium decree was published by the Chinese. The Portuguese monopoly was then supplanted by the Dutch. In 1773 British merchants in Calcutta became actively interested. By 1781 the East India Company had taken over the trade. In 1790 the British (The East India Company, we infer) shipped 4,000 chests of opium to China. In 1800 an anti-opium decree was issued and the East India Company, which was at that period a semi-governmental organization, withdrew from the opium trade. After that it was mainly in the hands of private British traders. Mr. Woodhead states that while the Indian opium was carried exclusively in British vessels, opium was being brought in from Turkey in American ships.

Opium remained a bootlegged commodity smuggled into China from abroad until 1858, when pressure from Western countries occasioned legalization of it in the interests of law and order - terms which have a familiar ring upon American ears at the present time. The American envoy Reed urged legalization with the plea that the powers of the West could not consider "our work done without some attempt to induce or compel an adjustment of this pernicious difficulty." This speech followed the argument that since the Chinese authorities were unable to suppress the traffic in opium, the next step was regulation by legalization. But in actuality the Chinese Government was about as incompetent to regulate opium as to suppress it. Opium smoking is a vice peculiarly appealing to the Chinese temperament, which likes indulgences of an effortless kind. Records leave the inference that the imperial dynasty at Peking through all this period was sincere in recognizing the evils of opium and sincere in aims to suppress it. But that cannot be said of the local mandarins at the ports of South China where the traffic centered. These gentry, then as now, were out for their heavy graft. Their policy was one of secret encouragement, with intermittent displays of suppression evidently calculated to assuage the anxieties of the central government. The result was that British traders could not count on anything. Every promise was sure to be violated. Trade in other merchandise was subjected to the hazards of this vacillating policy, with anti-foreign outbreaks recurrent.

Foreign nations are open to considerable blame for their handling of affairs over this period. Public sentiment was not the same as now, of course - it was a day when traffic even in slaves was commonplace. The idea of commerce was that if anybody wanted anything the trader was warranted in efforts to supply it. Nevertheless, expressions of opinion in the American and British press and pulpit at the time made the fact clear enough that the opium trade was recognized as demoralizing. China was known to be backward and illiterate. It is an indictment that no Western country distinguished itself through this period by forbidding its nationals to engage in the China opium trade or taking measures to see that no opium entered China under the flags of more enlightened countries.

All this being scarcely open to dispute, it is pushing things too far to suppose that China would have remained free of opium if foreign governments had restrained their own traders. With commerce of any sort being carried on, and Chinese beginning to travel in and out of the country, the opium habit would sooner or later have been imported during the nineteenth century, and with it an early spread of poppy cultivation in China. Chinese take to opium like a kitten to catnip, and with the mandarins able to do much as they pleased in areas distant from the capital, we cannot conceive of their resistance to opium production when its profits loomed so large.

Opium was bound to come in China, British or no British. The regret is that foreign nations failed to keep their record clean by doing what they might to keep it out as far as their efforts could reach. Theories of governmental intercession to save individuals from themselves were not the same a hundred years ago as they are today. The protective function of government was then limited almost exclusively to the saving of individuals from one another, without much effort to save individuals from themselves.

There was a swing to the side of liberality through the early part of the nineteenth century as a recession from the moral dictatorship assumed by Christian governments in preceding periods, and a laissez-faire of rugged individuality was on the boom. The opium war and the foreign trading in opium leading up to it occurred but a few decades after the Whisky Rebellion in America, when embattled Pennsylvania farmers rose in insurrection against the "interference" of government in their favored means of livelihood. Many other historical testimonials of the times suggest the theories of free will, especially in commerce, that prevailed at the beginning and through the early part of the last century. With these symptoms in mind we do not find astonishing the fact that neither Great Britain nor America took vigorous steps to see that no opium was carried to China in British or American bottoms. People were a long jump, in those days, from twentiethcentury international commissions on slavery, narcotics, seal fisheries, bird protection and such. The opium trade was but one of the many condoned evils of the times, accepted according to the standards of thought then current. China, without internal organization sufficient to enforce progressive measures, and possessing a population given over by temperament to welcome any sort of vice, especially one as slothful as opium-smoking, was the outstanding sufferer. Opium was eagerly welcomed there and gained a grip on the people that it had evidently never held on any other population, even where it had been known for centuries.

We must believe that traditions and racial temperament govern the susceptibilities of peoples in opium addiction. Opium was evidently known to the Greeks of classic days, and centuries ago it was known to most or all of the countries around the Mediterranean, yet never gained any great hold comparable to what it immediately achieved upon the Chinese. Their relish for it appears greatly to exceed that of their neighbors the Japanese, or even others nearer the barbaric state than the Chinese themselves, for example the Malays. To say that the Chinese, their tastes being what they are, would be free of opium but for the transportation of opium to China in foreign ships a hundred years ago is equivalent to the proposition that prohibition in the United States would have succeeded but for Canadian and Mexican smugglers.

In a lecture before the Massachusetts Historical Society in December of 1841, John Quincy Adams declared that opium was "a mere incident in the dispute, but no more the cause of the war than the throwing overboard of the tea in Boston harbor was the cause of the North American Revolution. ' The cause of the war is the 'kowtow.' " Harsh words those are, but in that reference to the kowtow, particularly, a great deal of astute insight into all problems with the Chinese is revealed. The kowtow, and all that it implies, is as important today as it was ninety-two years ago in our relations with China. By way of information, the kowtow is the obeisance a Chinese demands of those he considers below him - and secretly the Chinese maintain a superiority theory by which they are arrogantly above all foreigners.

Before the Chinese were soundly beaten several times during the nineteenth century, they felt privileged to treat foreigners as "running dogs," as they called them, unworthy of respect in trade agreements or anything else. In the earlier treaties and other official correspondence the Chinese used a character for the foreigner which in Chinese is a contemptuous term for barbarian, a character pronounced ee in the official Mandarin dialect. In informal references, Americans and Europeans were termed ouai go co, meaning "foreign dog." Dogs in China, as over most of the Orient from time immemorial, are regarded as the final extremity of all that is filthy and opprobrious. They wander as starving scavengers around city and village streets, just as they did in Bible lands at the time of Lazarus. With such an arrogant official attitude, it is not astonishing that the common people were encouraged to exercise to the fullest their native talents for chicanery and insult in dealing with foreigners, and all kinds of outrages were current accordingly. Thus, in respect to the trade with China up to the time of the "opium war" in which Great Britain asserted herself, we find a paradoxical situation. The trade was highly profitable both to local officials and local Chinese merchants around Canton, and in many ways they encouraged it all they could. At the same time their innate contempt for foreigners and their unshakable ego as the Chosen of heaven caused them to treat the foreigners engaged in the opium trade and all other trade as creatures beneath consideration in the matter of rights and privileges. All diplomatic overtures by foreigners to meet the situation in a spirit of dignity and equity were disdainfully repulsed - the ee were treated as impudent supplicants daring to address the Son of Heaven.

The full details of the so-called opium war are lengthy, and cannot be included here. The bound volumes of the various related treaties and military incidents obtainable in any large public library make very informing reading in connection with the popular conceptions of the affair as engendered by illinformed teachers of history in most high schools and colleges. Not only in reference to opium, but as revelations of a Chinese attitude that has occasioned much mischief, the historical particulars of the trade war between Britain and China in 1842 are highly informing.

Even today this lofty arrogance of the Chinese, officials and civilians alike, is everywhere noticed. It is a compulsory rite for officials to affect politeness in their homes or offices, though they may inwardly froth with hatred. Their arrogance comes out in what they do - their contemptuous disregard of inquiring letters, their subtle insults which escape all but an initiated veteran familiar with their customs, and their quick change of front as soon as they have a strong momentary advantage. And even the most bedraggled ricksha coolie nurses this inner conviction of his superiority to any foreigner, which he does not always take pains to conceal after the fare and the tip are in his hands. To all Chinese it is a circumstance for immense contempt that the foreigner cannot speak Chinese with the exact intonation of the native. He may know all the leading languages of Europe, but if he misses the right pitch in the complex tonal dialects of Chinese he remains an ee - provided he fares no worse and is listed with most of us as a ouai go co. But not only do we find the Chinese attitude of contempt for foreigners influencing the history of opium in China - we find in the matter of opium the same traits of incompetence, mingled with evasion and misrepresentation in the face of conspicuous evidence, that distinguishes them in all other dealings. First, last, and all the time, the Chinese are themselves, whatever the time or the problem.

Said the Chinese representative at Geneva in 1931:

"The facts really are that considerable improvement was achieved in the suppression of poppy cultivation and opium smoking during 1929 in many provinces of China, except in a few restricted areas or in Foreign Concessions and Leased Territories."

The representative had the usual complacency to make this statement at a time when opium-growing was compulsory over most of the areas where it would grow, and compulsory by officials of the so-called government. Outside thousands of towns and villages foreigners could see the fields of opium poppies waving in the breeze, while abroad Chinese diplomats whined that the Chinese were doing their noble best to suppress the despicable trade, but of course could not be expected to do anything in the few acres of the country under foreign flags.

As a matter of fact, opium is obtainable in the bootleg manner in all the foreign territory in China. But it must be said that these bits of foreign territory are the only places where sincere efforts are made to combat vicious drugs. There are hundreds of places in the International Settlement in Shanghai where opium may be bought, but the officials there do as much as could be expected, among a population with a taste for opium, to keep the trade down. It is significant, too, that they are resisted by the Chinese authorities in this effort. As mentioned, the customs in China are supervised by foreigners. Foreign customs inspectors have been resisted by the Chinese soldier escorts for opium cargoes in trying to make inspections of suspicious vessels. In the French Concession at Shanghai efforts appear to have been less sincere. In 1931-32 suspicion attached rather pointedly to several of the highest French officials. Some mysterious deaths followed the scandal of the exposure, with strong inferences of bribery and graft. But even with such a scandal, conditions were vastly better than in territory definitely Chinese, where opium cultivation was compulsory, and where officials assigned pro rata lots to towns and villages, with orders to purchase such lots or pay the price anyway. They were better than in Fukien, for example, where Fang Shun-tao, the governor, had the poppy seed distributed all over the lowlands by soldiers for obligatory planting. The foreign customs inspectors are upon the whole a superior body of men, the majority of them having a good background of education. They are vastly better paid than consular or diplomatic representatives in China. The Chinese Maritime Customs Service attracts a high class of young Americans and British, mostly university men, and it is next to unknown for any hint of laxity or official irregularity to be leveled against one of them. The head of this service is always a man of eminence, commonly an English nobleman. These customs officers have the rating of governmental dignitaries, and a newly-arrived foreign official must leave cards with the local customs representative as scrupulously as upon all foreign consular officials and native dignitaries. The customs men's wives rank high in the social scene because they can dress better with their extra money and spend more on entertaining. But the work of this body does not involve the searching of coastal junks and sampans, in which the opium is mainly carried.

In 1906, following many international parleys, the British Indian Government made arrangements to stop all exports of opium to China on condition that the Chinese would eradicate poppy cultivation in China. The idea was that as long as the trade was legal - it had been legalized in China in 1858 - the British Indian growers were entitled to a market for their product, but that if the Chinese authorities would give evidence of a sincere desire to stop it, the British would gladly cooperate. Realization of this aim was undertaken intelligently. An abrupt cessation of opium would have brought hardship to the Indian peasants cultivating poppies, and would have introduced also a severe problem in the number of addicts in China suddenly deprived of their drug. So a ten-year reduction plan was inaugurated, by which the Chinese were to warn all smokers to begin tapering off in their consumption, and by which the Indian growers could have time to prepare for some other kind of crop. Both poppy cultivation and opium consumption were to be at an end in China in 1917, ten years from the date of the agreements going into effect.

Sure enough, the Chinese set about the reduction of smoking and the reduction of poppy acreage. The plan went through on schedule, and in 1917, so a reliable foreigner who took part in the foreign investigation informed me, and so the investigators jointly reported, not an acre of poppies could be found in all China in that year.

At this news, the British prohibited all further exports of opium to China. Here typical Chinese trickery appears: the Chinese moguls had wished above everything else to stop the competition of Indian opium, which is preferred because of its taste to that of the native crop. Thus, in 1917, having stopped their own production, they could say in substance, "Now we've stopped opium at home - cease your exports to us." But after the British had passed legislation permanently prohibiting exports of opium to China, what did the Chinese do but resume opium production on a vast scale, happily free from British competition!

The Chinese might contend that disorders in the country introduced changes beyond their control, and that the Revolution of 1911, abolishing the monarchy, had brought about disorders making [265] further control of opium impossible. But the significant fact is that for six years after that revolution, from 1911 to 1917, despite disorders, the Chinese were able to carry out the plan that would end British competition and give them the opium market to themselves. It is significant, too, that immediately the agreement period expired, opium production was resumed on such a wide scale.

The awkward feature of dealing with the Chinese in this and in other matters is that foreign nations by international courtesy treat with Chinese leaders as a sovereign government, while knowing that they lack the moral self-respect to make any of their agreements worth the paper they are written on.

It is small wonder, knowing one another as they do, that well-to-do Chinese insist upon having foreigners for their bodyguards. Chiang Kaichek, either from a show of "patriotism" or individual imprudence, employed a Chinese bodyguard, and nearly paid for the error with his life when he escaped their plot to assassinate him one night.

Examples of Chinese wordiness and capacity to say what sounds best at the moment, irrespective of the facts, may be found in nearly everything the Chinese have to say publicly on the opium situation. At the Geneva conference in 1931 their representative declared:

"The National Anti-Opium Association of Shanghai, with branches in all parts of the country, has been very active in conducting publicity upon infractions of the regulations; and the Customs authorities have always been alert in detection of contraband smuggling....The amount of narcotics to be imported will be determined each year by a meeting of the State Council."

Note that use of the word infractions a term denoting very minor flaws in the Celestials' passion for perfect control. That struck people, in China, used to looking out their windows at vast fields of Chinese opium, grown by officials whom the central Chinese government chose to call loyal, as rather funny. Note, too, that the delegate refers to the amount of narcotics to be imported, as if no opium grew in China, but had to be obtained from somewhere in the territory of the foreign devils.

Furthermore, the amiable envoy might have been more explicit in telling the honored assembly what is meant by "detection of smuggling." True, the Chinese Navy, Chinese Army and Chinese police do a lot of detecting, and their record of detections looks very well on any statistics the Chinese authorities care to show. What they don't mention is that after the opium is "detected," it is handed back to the party possessing it with a "fine" which amounts to nothing more than a regular Chinese official squeeze. The opium then goes on to market in the usual way. Reference to the tax proclamation of Chen Kuo-hui, quoted in the previous chapter headed "Equilibrium of Chaos" will show the typical system of "fining" persons for opium possession while compelling pro rata purchases of opium by towns and villages all in the same manifesto.

Once in a while a "seizure" is made, not in the interest of opium prohibition, but because somebody failed to pay up. And such "seized" opium is sold and the proceeds pocketed by the forces of law and order. Of course foreign governments are not deceived by this Chinese subterfuge. The American delegates and British delegates are well equipped with data supplied by their respective consulates in China. This I know for a fact, because in such matters of mutually interesting information, there is a great deal of courtesy exchanged among the foreign consulates in China, with one consul commonly comparing notes with another consul of a different country; and I have seen copies of the reports that various foreign consuls have submitted to their governments in the matter of opium. But the amenities of international conferences preclude the well-informed American or British delegates from rising in their seats and calling the Chinese spokesmen outright liars. Thus the general public is deceived, and that, be it remarked, is the complacent aim and eternal reliance of the Chinese at all times in all things. And if the deferential delegates suggest by diplomatic innuendo that the distinguished Celestial is incorrect the reading public takes little notice, and assumes that where an issue is debatable, there must be right and wrong on both sides, with a mere "misunderstanding" to be cleared up. And a fundamental principle of international dealing, well recognized by all, is that for purposes of gaining public "moral support" a vigorous lie is more convincing than a timidly advanced truth. Chinese abroad have often had the temerity to declare blatantly that no consequential amounts of opium were produced in the country, when thousands of foreigners on the scene could pass through fields of it all around their places of residence, and when batches of fresh photographs of the fields were being steadily remitted by alert consuls.

In the Malay country and in the Dutch East Indies various systems of governmental regulation prevail. These areas have a considerable immigrant population of Chinese, and it is thought better to legalize the sale of opium than to risk the American prohibition system and introduce the bootlegging evils which could be expected among a population determined to have opium at any cost. In the Dutch East Indies I was told that opium could be purchased only by Chinese, with sale to any others forbidden under heavy penalties. Such a notion would horrify most. Americans, with cherished theories of non-discrimination between races, but it has a practicality about it that is worth more than a ton of mushy sentiment. It simply takes into account that all people are not in their inherited physical constitution and moral outlook the same.

Chinese opium den in Singapore
A Chinese opium den in Singapore

In Singapore, which has a seventy per cent Chinese population, I dropped into half a dozen or so of the opium smoking places to see what they looked like. They were about like what could be seen in China - the usual dirty hovels with half naked coolies sprawled around, some still smoking, with a litter of scummy ash and tinfoil wrappers on the benches by them, and some in a grinning stupor with just life enough to stare without moving, others lying dead to the world in sound slumber. The sight was not very unlike what could be seen in the old style sawdust-floored back rooms of the American saloon fifteen years ago in the United States. Government control does not prevent opium smoking, but as an intermediate step, it is visibly better than what goes on in China, where encouragement, not discouragement, is the official attitude.

Opium can be controlled more easily than liquor, for the reason that there is only one way to make it, and that is from open fields of growing poppies. These cannot be concealed, naturally, so wherever authority sincerely desires to do so, cultivation can be limited to the precise acre required for medicinal purposes. Government prohibition of opium would be a farce in Singapore or any part of the South Seas where there are many Chinese, so long as there remain immense areas upon the same shipping routes where poppy cultivation was extensive. The bulk of opium is slight, and it is therefore one of the most profitable of contraband commodities. The solution to the opium problem in Asia and Oceania and the Dutch Indies is hence directly dependent upon abolition of opium production in China. Abolition of opium production in China would likewise assist in drug control in the United States, for in one way or another a considerable quantity is smuggled in from China. The dope problem, with increasing addiction reported in America and other Occidental countries, is one of considerable gravity for well-wishers of civilization.

That the Chinese could prevent poppy-growing if they really wished to do so is borne out by a variety of evidence. It has been mentioned that Chinese are very amenable to authority when it is stern and definite, and attention has been called to the fact that between 1907 and 1917 opium practically disappeared as a Chinese product. We learn, too, that in earlier times one of the Chinese emperors decided that his people were drinking too much wine, and ordered forthwith that every grapevine in the country should be pulled up, all grape seed and rootings destroyed, and none thenceforth possessed or planted on pain of death. That gesture of prohibition, we learn, worked perfectly, with grapes actually disappearing from the country. To this day you see no grapevines over many parts of China. That was the Chinese idea of a law with teeth in it, and it worked; and as the people have changed little if at all, temperamentally, since that time, we may infer that definite and simple measures for opium control would work effectually today. Our elaborate Western concepts of justice, with flexible gradations of punishment, admissions of doubt, appeals, presumptions of innocence in absence of proved guilt and the like, seem unsuited to the management of a people as evasive as the Chinese, among whom moral standards are too low to make any testimony reliable, and whose talents for concealment are so distinct. What works with them is something simple and stern. The minds of the Chinese masses cannot grasp intricate hairlines of procedure, but they can grasp simple "do's" and "don'ts" where the penalty is clear and sufficiently formidable.

This brings up possibilities of improvement in the opium situation of China. At the present time there are no signs of improvement. And under present conditions, with hundreds of thousands of government officials and soldiers, semi-governmental military chieftains, and hordes of bandits relying upon opium as their main income, naturally the chief emphasis in China is for all the production possible. True, there are societies, headed by Chinese, recognizing the damage being done, and these carry on convincingly sincere campaigns of anti-opium publicity. But, practically, they are absolutely innocuous. At the same time, there is more opposition to opium among the ignorant peasantry than would be supposed. They realize the ruin it brings to families, and many of them have the sad duty, by law of tradition, of supporting one or more wastrels of the clan who are too far gone in opium addiction to be of any account at work, while spending money in painful amounts to keep up their supply of the drug. Their woe from the extortions of the tax gatherers seems to be worse, too, when they plant opium. Upon the whole, it might be truthfully said that public opinion in China is against opium. The evil is perpetuated and aggravated by the greedy vultures who dominate, and who are anxious to see their respective territories yield the last possible copper at whatever costs of social destruction.

The solution will come when some individual or party gains sufficient ascendancy in China to drive out the present crop of predatory overlords. This presumes, of course, that such an individual or party would be a shade better than the present crop. But both the emergence of such a party and the possibility that it would use its power for the general welfare are mere conjectures. Solution of the opium problem therefore invokes the same array of dubious ifs as the settlement of the rest of China's predicaments, all of which in one way or another, like opium, involve America and other nations.


THE label above is not put there haphazardly. Its warrant lies in the fact that upon the continent of Asia the voice and force of Japan are in impressive singleness and unity, while in contrast we note among the Chinese neither unity of voice nor of force. The Chinese deal with an opposing nation. The Japanese deal with a varyingly opposing people. There is no greater error in American public thought than the confusion of the Chinese and the Japanese. They are "all Orientals," we hear, as if that geographical propinquity established identical characteristics. It would be as intelligent to say we are "all North Americans," with the inclusion of Mexicans and Canadians as of supposedly similar characteristics. Certainly the Japanese and Chinese are as unlike as Mexicans and Americans, or Eskimos and French Canadians.

The Japanese and Chinese bear a distinct physical resemblance, and that is about the only similarity we can truthfully list. In character they are as far apart as the poles. And to be exact, the Japanese and Chinese do not really look alike. There are Chinese who could pass for Japanese, and there are Japanese who could pass for Chinese. But a crowd of the one will be distinctly recognizable compared with a crowd of the other. The difference is not easy to describe, but in the Far East it is soon learned.

Evidently the root stock of the two was nearly the same. Both are mongoloid. But the immigrants to Japan mixed with the aboriginal tribes of the islands. These aborigines of the Japanese archipelago were presumably a white-skinned group, coming from we do not exactly know where, but possibly related to the white-skinned group or groups which later populated Russia, Finland and other areas of the Baltic country. The average Japanese man is more hairy than the average Chinese. Japanese women, of the classes not tanned brown by work in the fields or fishing, often have pink and white complexions that scarcely suggest the mongoloid at all. Chinese women of the same class are not yellow-skinned, by any means, but their skin is of a different hue, with more ruddiness. There is an ashy tint, a sort of grayness, in the pigment of the skin upon the average Japanese men that we do not observe among average Chinese. There is a different bone structure, too, but this is difficult to describe. Japanese have very short legs in comparison with the rest of the body, which may be as large that of an American several inches taller.

More conspicuous differences exist in outward manner. The Chinese are garrulous in crowds, as talkative as Italians. A sampan full of coolie Chinese enjoying themselves is a pandemonium of shrill jabber. Japanese are much more sedate. A foreigner traveling on a boat or train in China, or stopping to look at something along the street, will find the nearest Chinese accosting him in ready conversation if the Chinese speaks any English at all. This is not equally true in Japan; in fact the opposite tendency, one of silent, staring scrutiny may be expected among the lower classes. Among the upper classes restraints of good manners forbid this, and curiosity is more guarded. One difference immediately strikes even a casual tourist. In China, politeness is an imposed rite, reserved for guests or others upon a footing by which in theory they merit it. In Japan it seems really an instinct with the people, something in which they delight to indulge upon any occasion. One dropping a bundle in the streets is almost smothered with effusive assistance in picking it up. In China such little incidents are more in the American Bowery manner, with everybody going about with his tongue cocked for ready accusations. Two rickshas bumping in China release the trigger of explosive abuse from the two coolies simultaneously. The same incident in Japan is likely to be a lesson in politeness from which ninety per cent of American motorists could profit.

Yet on casual acquaintance with both races, strange to say, the majority of Americans like the Chinese better. The Chinese are vastly more light-spirited. By contrast the Japanese, except in their homes and among intimate friends, are an aloof, silent lot. A table of Japanese business men in a hotel looks like a group of tired-out Ph.D.'s. In their shops both Chinese and Japanese are attentively polite. To many Americans, the taciturn Japanese character suggests something sinister, and they are uneasy in the presence of it. Also, Japanese are poor linguists, while Chinese are very good. In brief experience the touring American encounters many Chinese who will flatter him in his own language. The Japanese, who inherits different traditions regarding the use of words, is not likely to flatter him in any language, or open conversation with him at all beyond what is incidental to business.

Upper class Japanese seem influenced by the Samurai tradition of "one word men." The Samurai were an aristocracy of warriors, mighty touchy about their honor, with a fanatical reverence for exactitude in the spoken word - that is the tradition, anyway. They had one answer to questions - yes or no. A Samurai was supposed to tell the truth, and be quick to lay his two-handed sword across anybody who said he didn't. With their reckless, religious devotion to loyalties, marked among Japanese even today, we may well believe that the old Samurai were in general a caste intensely zealous in their adherence to definite principles.

This tradition is precisely the opposite of anything we find in the same field in China, where flexibility of meanings in language is past belief, and where at no time in their history, so far as anyone has discovered, was there ever any sense of insult at being called a "teller of falsehoods" - it being remembered that the Chinese have no word for lie or for liar. In personal habits, the Japanese are very cleanly, and this distinguishes them at once. Even the Japanese working people bathe fastidiously. They take off their shoes at the door. They are fiends for scrubbing things. In abhorrence of dirt, they are the absolute opposite of the Chinese, with whom dirt is a spiritual affinity.

Americans of long experience in both Japan and China vastly prefer the Japanese. They are slow in offices and shops, compared to ourselves, but they are reliable to a degree unknown in China, and are regarded socially as much more sincere. This is the verdict I have from a great many Americans competent to speak. I never heard of a contrary view on the scene, though all agree upon certain annoying characteristics of life in Japan, one of which is the spy mania. Perhaps one reason for the American preference for the Chinese after casual experience is that the Chinese represent a country in a predicament to elicit sympathy. We seldom, as a nation, feel much affection for people we cannot be sorry for. Perhaps another reason is that the Japanese are commonly regarded as a threat to our security.

When I was first out of school I spent two years in San Francisco, and there became fairly familiar with the prevailing sentiment in California toward Chinese and Japanese. It was overwhelmingly pro-Chinese. Or putting the matter more accurately, it was overwhelmingly anti-Japanese, with indifference to the Chinese among many, repugnance among a few, and actual liking among a still smaller group. Almost nobody in California liked the Japanese. Among the reasons, possibly first of all should be mentioned the less affable manner of the Japanese. Next in order, I believe, uneasiness at Japanese ambitions in the Pacific inspired distrust. This latter factor was and is fanned as vigorously as possible by California business men and chambers of commerce who want the United States Government to increase navy yards and army bases on the California coast. The idea is that construction work will boom local business, and additionally that sailors and soldiers quartered in the area will spend their wages and improve business to that extent. A good deal of estimating goes on as to the amount men earning so much would spend per month, etc., but the reasons advanced in the newspapers have to do with safety for Pacific Coast residents. The California legislators cannot expect to make much headway in Congress by appeals for more enlisted men to spend money in the sun-kissed territory, so the "adequate defense" drum is the one thumped. This line of talk is not analyzed in its particulars by the illiterate in the state, and they are thus driven to a state of alarm whereby they look under the bed for a Jap every night before retiring. Scarehead news rumors about Japanese landing secret forces in Mexico are always good for a shiver down the spines of the orange pickers, and the good old editors have a weakness for circulation totals.

In simple prudence we do need substantial arrangements for emergency defenses on the Pacific Coast. But the excessive ballyhoo about the matter in respect to Japan, pursued in the manner we know, and often for motives not declared, has done needless harm.

Perhaps the Californian's present horror of the Japanese originates partly in the fact that Japanese immigration to California continued until within the present century, whereas immigration of Chinese was stopped about fifty years ago. Twenty-five years back the Californians feared that the Japanese would overrun the country, and to score their reasonable point of reduced Japanese immigration, they resorted to propaganda that was outside that issue altogether. The effects of this have doubtless remained as one of the contributing causes of the anti-Japanese attitude. Importantly, too, we must recognize instinctive racial antipathies, not the less just because they proceed from sensitivities that are indefinable within our natures. Not all of us have the same sensitivities of instinctive dislike toward the same races, but that does not mean that such instinctive resentment is not real to those experiencing it. To expect people to like a race vaguely repellent to true inner instincts is futile, and to ask them to pretend that they do is hypocritical. Both Chinese and Japanese give some Americans the "creeps" as they commonly express it. Racial antipathies may be stirred artificially by misinformation, but where they are instinctive, as they certainly are in numerous individuals, they cannot be altogether banished by trying to intellectualize scientifically what belongs in the realm of emotional responses.

Probably with the dread of Japanese supremacy removed, and the uneasiness at Japanese low-wage economic competition likewise relieved, there would be little difference between the attitude in California toward Chinese and Japanese. There would be some difference, because the Chinese is more effusively amiable, and that appeals more to us than the demeanor of studious silence distinguishing the Japanese. The Japanese are more proud, too, more conscious of their position in the world, than the Chinese, and at times evidences of this strike Californians as arrogance. But after considerable familiarity with Japanese and Chinese labor and business competition on the Pacific Coast, it seems to me a fair statement that both races conduct themselves very commendably there. In talking to persons of bitter resentment toward one or the other or both, I found justifying personal experiences among them very scarce - everybody seemed to gain his opinion from its abundance in the air rather than in personal experience. In this observation there is no intention of criticizing Californians for their hostility toward Asiatics - if they feel it they may as well say so, with no discredit attached. The intended point is that in support of a feeling that proceeds from instinctive racial differences, the Californians have dragged in a great deal of scary propaganda that has confused the rest of the United States.

There are grounds to believe that the Californians, in order to make out a strong case against the Japanese, have unconsciously held up the Chinese as paragons of virtue to a very misrepresentative degree. If the relative positions of the Chinese and Japanese in the Pacific were reversed, with a strong China the alleged menace, I suspect that the people of California would soon discover all sorts of things wrong with the Chinese.

It is worth recalling, in considering the California influence in the current American estimate of the Chinese and Japanese, that the Chinese came to this country in large numbers between seventy-five and fifty years ago, during the great mining and railroad-building era of the West. In the West seventy-five years ago a Chinese was but a bare notch above a coyote in the social scale. The Chinese got their start there at a time when there was no "race conflict." Those who conflicted were promptly extinguished by men accustomed to dispatching Indians and rattlesnakes. Such a social chasm minimized the chances of racial antagonism.

The Japanese arrived as immigrants at a later period, after our democracy had undergone considerable remodeling. They stepped into theories of equality that were broad national theories, but which were individually not accepted by many people. These latter objected to the Japanese school children attending the same schools in California, and to many other things in personal experience which they extolled as principles at large. Hence racial conflict became a reality with the Japanese, where it had not been with the Chinese.

The greater pride of the Japanese aggravated this problem in California. A Chinese coolie abroad is willing to recognize himself as one of a subject people, and feel no misery in the position. A Japanese is sensitive to the hint of his being inferior.

Such sociological retrospect, taking into account the anti-Japanese outbreaks in California a quarter of a century ago, seem sufficiently important to be summarized in a review of our Pacific problems today. Our judgment of affairs between China and Japan in Asia has been more influenced than generally realized by our history in America respecting Chinese and Japanese immigrants.

There is no point in entering into the full lengthy details of Japan's doings in Manchuria during 1931 and 1932. They have been well presented, so far as the historical incidents and treaties and investigating committee reports go. Everybody interested in the Far East has read that on September 18, 1931, at 10:30 P.M., a Japanese railway bridge was blown up just outside Mukden, Manchuria, and that within four hours that same night the Japanese were in military possession of the city and its environs.

The blowing up of the bridge was not the cause of anything much in itself. It was like the sinking of the Maine in Havana harbor, the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand at Sarajevo in 1914, and the burning of the Reichstag in Berlin last February - incidents historical only because they acted as a percussion cap to complexly opposing forces.

It is not the purpose here to retell history, but only to relay to those who have read it, in the matter of Japanese relations with China, such accumulations of first-hand comment as may offer further enlightenment. Familiar historical data will be related only sufficiently to preserve the connection.

According to estimates, the Chinese population in Manchuria had increased from about 5,000,000 in 1900 to around 30,000,000 in 1931 - over five hundred per cent. The reasons for this are various.

There was an increased world demand for soya bean products and other things among the resources of Manchuria. Railways put through by the Russians and Japanese at the dawn of the present century speeded development. Then the restrictions that had in earlier times tended to keep down immigation of Chinese were removed with changing political conditions. Manchuria was held as a private preserve by the Imperial Manchu dynasty as territory distinct politically from China. When the Manchus first conquered China 300 years ago they deserted their home territory en masse to flock southward into a warmer climate. For a while Manchuria was almost depopulated, as Chinese were forbidden to enter it. In 1907, to block Russian expansion, Chinese settlers were definitely encouraged to emigrate there. At the same time, political changes were made bringing Manchuria into the fold as a part of China.

Turmoil increased all over China in the years following the revolution, and Manchuria had its share. The Japanese were more and more obliged to increase their soldier guards, allowed under the railway treaties, to keep the railways and adjoining Japanese property protected.

Zhang Zuolin
張作霖 Zhang1 Zuo4lin2, warlord of Manchuria from 1916 to 1928. It was said he killed a wounded bandit on horseback when he was out hunting, stole the wounded man's horse and became a "redbeard" himself, becoming the chieftain of the Honghuzi. He invaded China proper in 1924/10, taking Beijing and the government in 1926/4. Manchuria's collapsed in the winter of 1927-1928 under Zhang's aventurism and excesses. He lost to Chiang Kai-shek in 1928/5 and was killed by a bomb planted by a Japanese Kwantung Army officer on June fourth. Zhang had been an incompetent Japanese proxy

After a few years a Chinese general named Chang Tsao-lin rose to dominance in Manchuria and administered it as separate from China proper, and much of the time acted independently of the Chinese central government. He undertook military preparations on a vast scale to keep out rival Chinese armies. In this enterprise Chang Tsao-lin utilized modern methods more than might be supposed by people who think of Chinese armies as ill-equipped. By 1923 he had established a $500,000,000 (Chinese currency) arsenal at Mukden, designed by Danish engineers with later assistance by German, French, British and Japanese consultants. This amount of money goes a long way in China, and the arsenal was a formidable affair. Between 1924 and 1927 some 20,000 men were regularly employed. As late as 1931, we learn, about a thousand foreigners were employed in the superior positions. Japanese figures state that the arsenal at one time produced 4,500 shells a day, 40,000 cartridges a day, and 12 cannon per month. In view of its size and the number of men employed, this seems plausible. (A large number of arsenals, not as huge as this one but still huge, may be seen all over China today.) Chang maintained a personal army of between 200,000 and 300,000 men.

Then Chang Tsao-lin was mysteriously killed in June, 1928, and the immense heritage fell to his dissipated and incompetent son, the wellremembered Chang Hsueh-liang. Chang Tsao-lin had preserved an attitude of cautious self-sufficiency. He probably had no affection for Japan, but he avoided taking an outright offensive attitude. Under his regime the usual number of disturbances to be expected in a poorly governed country occurred to harass the Japanese, but there was little if anything in the way of a direct Japan-baiting campaign.

Wang Jingwei
汪兆銘 Wang1 Zhao4ming2, commonly known by his pen name 汪精衛 Wang1 Jing1wei4, 1883-1944, president Republic of China 1940-1944, collaborated with Japanese Empire, Italian and German Fascists (also met Hitler personally), was clean, intellectual, and had a very loyal wife, here in a toast (probably with plain water), with National Socialists

The young heir Chang Hsueh-liang changed all this. He promptly began intrigues with Chiang Kai-chek, over on the China side, and commenced dabbling in Chinese politics. He formed an alliance with Chiang Kai-chek, the most successful of the opportunists playing around Nanking, and Chang and Chiang together routed a temporary "central government" headed by a certain Wang Ching-wei.

Chang Hsueh-liang marched his army into China, made Peking his capital, and kept for himself all the local taxes he could collect. He was strong enough to push into the still persisting "central government" of China at Nanking a number of enemies of the regime there. Meanwhile he launched an anti-Japan campaign. The propaganda machines were called the Foreign Affairs Association and the Northeastern Cultural Association. Chang's officials, acting in the spirit of the new policy, put forth a variety of demands upon the Japanese. Return of the Japanese leased territory at Dairen and Port Arthur was demanded. Treaties were disregarded and attempts were made to collect taxes in these Japanese leased territories. Chang Hsueh-liang also drove out or assassinated the favorite officials of his father who were suspected of being indisposed to join in the new anti- Japanese jubilee. Those who had even studied in Japan were driven out or slain - two of his father's leading officers were murdered at a mah jong party to which Chang Hsueh-liang invited them.

Under this policy, renewed violence against the Japanese was manifested all over Manchuria. What Chang Hsueh-liang expected to gain by this cannot be imagined. Evidently, through his intrigues in China, proper, he had become a subscriber to the anti-foreign policy of the Nationalists, who had come into power in 1927. In the end - which was not long in coming - this cost Chang Hsueh-liang his power and made him an exile. Had he continued the more conservative rascality of his father, instead of waging a foredoomed contest of covert violence against the Japanese, he would probably be in Manchuria yet, and Manchuria would be Manchuria and not Manchukuo.

The anti-Japanese policy of the Chinese, culminating in the seizure of Manchuria by the Nippon forces, did not astonish veteran foreign observers in the Far East. They had seen it threatening for years. While the anti-British drive of the Chinese was at its worst, from 1925 to 1927, foreign journalists remarked, "The British now - then the Japanese." The Chinese maintain an anti-foreign policy toward all nationalists collectively all the time, but single out successively one nation at a time for special acts of violence. When some advantage is to be gained, such as a loan or sentimental support, this sniping and baiting is relaxed toward one and intensified toward another. In the early part of the present century, America was singled out, and American goods suffered from a boycott, together with other hostilities against our citizens resident in China. The anti-American activities were dropped, not because the Chinese came to repent and like us better, but because we were thought "soft," and more useful as a source of loans and sentimental support for them against other nations than as a target by which to distract mob attention from their own official incompetence and corruption.

With this background of Chinese' characteristics in mind, it is worth while to turn to developments in Japan. By foreign intrigue, the Japanese were deprived of much that they won in their war against China in 1894. The judgment of the powers was that international morality could not permit the Japanese taking over certain spoils. The other nations had done so after wars in the past, it was admitted, but times had changed, and a loftier morality had supervened. The Japanese gave in, but were angered to see immediately afterwards that what had been denied them on grounds of international ethics had all along been saved for Russia, toward whom the new morality did not seem to apply. So the Japanese saw the Russians genially taking over what they felt they had won themselves.

The arrogant encroachments of the Russians occasioned bitter resentment in Japan. After the usual preliminaries of "incidents" that become significant when two nations are antagonistic, war began. In America Japan was a high favorite. The Japanese won easily in a few months, and this time they were determined to establish on a firm basis their rights obtained by the treaties with China ten years before. But no - again the pious chorus of world powers was heard, and the Japanese were informed that international amity could not permit realization of such aims as those put forth by Japan. Strange to say, the Japanese took this verdict, as expressed by the Treaty of Portsmouth (New Hampshire), 1905, without a great deal of complaint from their plenipotentiaries. The latter, however, had to be protected from mob assaults when they landed in Japan, so great was the indignation of the home folks.

In 1915, when the rest of the world was occupied with the great war, the Japanese thought the time propitious to square matters on the Asiatic mainland. They drew up a bill of twenty-one particulars and presented these to the representatives of China. This was called "The Twenty-one Demands," and demands they probably were. The exact nature of some of them was not made public. The most important demand, allegedly, was that the Japanese railway lease, to expire in 1923, should be extended. A great outcry arose in America, and world hostility was so strong that the Japanese rather backed down in the matter. One of the Japanese diplomats who participated in the famous Twenty-one Demands negotiations with China told me that the Chinese representatives, well before the negotiations became public, consented amiably enough to signing the agreement. They confided, however, that their signing would "look better" if Japan allowed the commitments to be announced as "demands," which the Chinese delegates would appear to sign under duress. The Japanese accordingly made a secret bargain to that effect, going through the show of "demanding" concessions from China; and the Chinese delegates "unwillingly" affixed their names. The inference was that a fair amount of money had been handed around to make the ink flow smoothly, an expedient that the Japanese have more than once found very reliable in dealings with Chinese officials.

But the Japanese miscalculated. The hocus-pocus of the duress part of the business was intended strictly for local appreciation in China. Instead it aroused America to a lofty idealism of sympathy for the poor Chinese patriots thus obliged to meet the demands of a fierce and ruthless foe. At this period - 1915 - be it remembered, American international thinking had divided the world strictly into two classes of countries - the exaltedly moral and perfect, yearning for freedom and liberty, and the despicably oppressive and mean, as symbolized by Germany et aliae, with immediate inclusion of Japan upon the news of China's plight.

As to the pre-arranged show of Chinese "submission," I have been unable to find any first-hand historical discussion of it.* From the habits of Chinese officials at all times, with their instinct for deviousness and covering their tracks in intrigues, the account related is one acceptable to any experienced American or British official in China as plausible and likely.

Four times balked, the Japanese faced the campaign of obstruction and hectoring by the Chinese from 1928 to 1931 with increasing anger. Their precious railroad in Manchuria was not only suffering reduced earnings by the absence of law in the country, but was increasingly menaced by a policy of anti-Japanese hostility which threatened serious destruction of railway property. In 1929 and 1930, the Japanese listed outrages from the Chinese as follows:

Obstruction to railway operation................171
cases Robbery during operation of trains...........189 cases
* George Bronson Rea, Far East journalist, states in a pro-Japanese pamphlet that the circumstances of this affair as stated were known to foreign correspondents at the time.
Robbery of railway equipment.......................92
cases Robbery of telegraph lines...................26 cases

The Chinese answer to this - that the Japanese should withdraw their guards and let the Chinese protect the railway - was ridiculous. The Chinese do not protect even their own railways. The chance of a foreign railway receiving protection would be too slim to consider. Chang Hsueh-liang was taking it upon himself to undo personally the treaties by which the Japanese held leases upon port territory and a railway right of way. But in Japan there was in power a highly conservative, even benevolent statesman, part of the time Minister of Foreign Affairs, the famous Baron Shidehara. "Indulgence and patience are called for in regard to the existing state of things in China," he declared.

But while Baron Shidehara was appealing for "indulgence and patience," the Chinese, as always, seized upon this display of conciliation to redouble their anti-Japanese activities. The Japanese army and navy pointed to these increasingly numerous instances of Chinese outrages as evidence that the Shidehara policy of loving-kindness simply failed to work with the Chinese. This was, of course, nothing new - every single foreign country that has had dealings with China has suffered for its leniency.

But the story goes on. In 1929 the American stock crash damaged the market for Japanese silk. World trade slumped, and the pinch was felt acutely by millions of Japanese factory workers and their families. Times became worse all over Japan. In such a plight, the people were more easily irritated by the anti-Japanese activities of the Nationalist government in China and by the more exasperating and serious anti-Japanese activities of Chang Hsueh-liang in Manchuria. The Chinese had not only defaulted on large loans dating back to earlier periods, obtained from Japan, but by pronouncement of the dominant party in China they actually repudiated these loans. The "deal-firmly-with-China" sentiment steadily gained strength.

When the Chinese want to be nasty - as they always do toward somebody - they have a talent for exasperation exceeding anything else in human shape. The favorite policy, toward Americans and other nationalities, is to encourage secretly all kinds of obstruction tactics, from looting to murder, and then disclaim responsibility, and plead as an excuse the general disorder of the country. But while some disorders would naturally occur to cause loss or injury to foreigners in a country in a chaos of anarchy, the provincial moguls and central government officials, with their tyrannical authority, can when they wish prevent the majority of excesses. But as in all countries where the people are manifestly incapable of self-government, those in power fall back upon the hackneyed business of blaming one or another foreign faction for domestic hardships. But certainly it is a farce for Chinese authorities to plead lack of responsibility for anti-foreign outbreaks when they are busy seven days a week turning out posters and pamphlets urging the local populace to resist by all methods the "imperialistic foreigners" who "rob" them of their daily bread.

Chang Hsueh-liang openly placarded Manchuria with anti-Japanese literature, then claimed his innocence of the results that followed in the natural course of events. Whether he issued specific instructions in every case of murder or anti-Japanese rioting cannot be known. But what is known, and was seen at the time by impartial foreign observers, attaches to him blame for such developments. It is significant that his father, Chang Tsao-lin, was able to keep down disorders of similar magnitude.

The Chinese Nationalist Government kept up a steady circulation of anti- Japanese literature from 1927 to 1931, openly renouncing the obligation to repay loans, inserting in school texts anti-Japanese propaganda, and in many places having the school children sing "hate Japan" songs as a daily exercise. After all that, the Nationalist delegates to world conferences in 1931 and 1932 could whine, "We have done the best we could to treat honorably with all peoples, as the Chinese have done at all times. But our ruthless foe has leaped upon us in our helplessness and blamelessness."

The Japanese are correct in their citations of propaganda against them in the schools and among all sorts of radical organizations.

Translations of such literature have been made by American and British officers, and may be found filed in the consulates of each all over China. Here is one of the songs cited by the Japanese as a sample of Chang Hsueh-liang's campaign against them in Manchuria: We will knock you down and leave you powerless We will cast your rifles away We will hurl down your cannon We will trample on your ferocious hegemony We will brace our spirits in firm unity, etc. (more in same vein) "We will cancel your credits We will break your banks Overthrow! Overthrow! Your economic power is already useless."

And curiously, an inflated ego appears to have been instilled into the two hundred-odd thousand soldiers of Chang Hsueh-liang's private army, perhaps at the time the strongest in China. The country's wealth was greater in relation to its population than in the rest of China, leaving more ample funds for military endeavors. And in equipment, as mentioned, they were not madly off. What they lacked was spirit and character, and that more than two hundred thousand of them fled in a frenzied rout before less than eleven thousand invaders is nothing to stir astonishment.

The blow fell, as described, on September 18, 1931. The Japanese war party had come into dominance in Japan - the indulgent wait-and-see and loving-kindness policy of the venerable old Shidehara had given way before the rising national indignation at Chinese tactics. Comment among business and government Americans in China was rather prevalently, "The Chinese have picked on the wrong baby this time. They got away with all sorts of cussedness on Americans and British for years, but trying the same business on the Japanese was a poor guess. They're tough hombres, those Japanese, but the Chinese have got it coming to them. The Jap- anese are doing what most of us have said for years the Chinese needed." But that was not what Minister Nelson T. Johnson reported to Washington. A minister's report is supposed to include a relay of "informed opinion." One nicety of informed opinion, much more brief and expressive than anything that ever went into a legation report, was the common one exchanged by long-suffering businessmen who had submitted in silent anger to years of what the Japanese had finally revolted against. This was the earnest reflection, "I hope the Japs beat hell out of 'em."

The Chinese maintain, with a great array of evidence, that the Japanese attack on Mukden on September 18, 1931, was carefully premeditated, and was not the spontaneous answer to the blowing up of one of their bridges. The strong inference is that the attack actually was premeditated. The military party was in complete control, and indignation was high among the Japanese soldiers. Offenses on the part of the Chinese had become increasingly numerous, and the military of Japan were no longer restrained by a conservative policy in Tokyo. Presumably they said to themselves, "Well, boys, this thing has gone far enough. The next time we suffer an outrage we'll up and at 'em. Be sure it's a fair case, so we can have public opinion behind us. But be ready to go at the word - and go as far as you can."

Chinese contentions that the Japanese blew up their own bridge to supply themselves with a pretext are not well supported by inferential data. In the first place, such would not be necessary. The Chinese were causing new disturbances from week to week, and at any time that year the Japanese would have had to wait only a few days or so before some new Chinese offense would provide any needed provocation for an attack. Exactly how or by whom the bridge in question was blown up nobody has as yet satisfactorily established for the public. It blew up, that is all we know, and the Japanese forces guarding the railway zone thereupon charged forward and drove off all Chinese soldiers in sight.

Once in possession of Mukden, the opportunity for the conquest of Manchuria was brilliant. To Japanese thinking, the Chinese had forfeited all privileges of further dilly-dallying. The Japanese had built the railroad according to treaty provisions, and had just reason to feel that they had kept their side of the bargain. The railway was to be in Japanese hands for a period of years, then was to be turned over to the Chinese with agreed terms of reimbursement. Successive anarchists, military opportunists, antiforeign officials and radical student secret societies, all with a passion for inciting mob action against anything that would distract attention from themselves, had exhausted Japanese endurance. The prospect of opening up a new empire under the Japanese flag was a powerful lure, too. Probably there were many among the military leaders of Japan who did not weep at the task, once the accumulation of provocations had brought it before them. On the other hand, we may believe that if the Japanese loans and Japanese property rights in Chinese territory had been respected, with a Chinese official attitude of protecting foreign property instead of covertly inciting destruction of it, the Japanese would never have invaded the country. The Japanese position might be phrased, "I shouldn't do this if you didn't force me to, but since you do, just observe, please, that I am not losing anything on the deal."

In private conversation, few Americans or British, or any other foreigners in China - excluding missionaries - voiced much sympathy for the Chinese over events in Manchuria. "They had it coming to them," was the usual remark. And it would have been remarkable indeed if American businessmen, their goods looted and pirated for years without signs in most cases of official opposition to such doings, had shown profuse sympathy. The Kuomintang, voice of the recognized Nationalist Government, had lambasted us for years as greedy imperialists, sucking China's life blood, though as a matter of fact we had been engaged in nothing more than the buying and selling regarded as fair and legitimate over most of the rest of the world. American government officials, particularly the consuls outside Shanghai and Tientsin, were too weary of Chinese trickery and anti- American baiting to shed any tears at the sight of the Japanese doing what many foreigners had declared a thousand times that the Chinese needed having done to them.

The missionaries, on the other hand, ever anxious to ingratiate themselves with the Chinese, made fools of themselves generally. Despite the impropriety of third party foreigners making public utterances upon an issue upon which they should remain outwardly neutral, the missionaries were publicly abusive of the Japanese. One missionary I knew wrote to the local Japanese consul a letter of protest. The Japanese consul indignantly turned it over to the American consul, who sent for the missionary and asked him to apologize to the Japanese official for his breach of international etiquette. This stand of the American missionaries in China is interesting, because the missionaries have been the worst sufferers from the long campaign of officially inspired Chinese atrocities. That same missionary who felt so keenly the assailed honor of dear old China can look out of his window this very day and see the remaining cinders where some of the buildings of the school he teaches in were burned by a group of trusted Chinese teachers and Chinese students a few years ago. And if that missionary will cast his eyes at the gate of one of the school properties he will see the spot where that same season one gang of lovable Chinese mowed another gang down two or three deep with a hidden machine gun, after inviting them to a feast or some sort of rally, and if in imagination he can look over the ridge west of his house, he can see where two elderly spinsters, lifelong missionaries, were tortured to death three years ago for being "imperialists." All around him are the graves of Americans and British tortured to death or massacred. In one cemetery there are the graves of nine slain in one night. Nearly all the missionaries in that compound, I believe, have had to flee for their lives at different times in fear of their treacherous hopefuls.

Once as a guest at that particular missionary's house, as he was presenting his views, I asked how he held the Chinese exempt from all the laws by which he passed judgment upon others guilty of offenses not a tenth as heinous. "It is their way of fighting," he said, "as natural to them as our way with us. The Chinese are finding themselves."

A strange paradox appeared among the ranks of those into whose ears God whispers authentic verdicts direct, giving them assurance beyond what is possible for common men. For while the American missionaries in China were praying for the smiting wrath of Jehovah to manifest itself upon the invading Japanese, their brethren across the channel under the flag of the spangled sun were joyful in knowing that God's wisdom was effecting a triumph of righteousness for Nippon.

In America public opinion, which is a way of saying amplified opinion from American missionaries in China, because we have only a very few in Japan, decided that the Japanese had run amuck. The forebodings of the California contingent in Congress seemed borne out. Secretary of State Henry L. Stimson, known jovially in press circles as "Wrong Horse Harry," started writing sharp notes to the Japanese as they spread over Manchuria from Mukden. According to the Nine-Power Pact, the latest of the repetitious documents having to do with the Open Door in China, he was perhaps warranted in doing this. But what he did not take into account was that the Japanese might not jump at his words in the way people jumped at them around the corridors of the big gray building at Seventeenth Street and Pennsylvania Avenue. In effect, every time Mr. Stimson wrote a sharp note of command saying, "Don't under any circumstances go any farther," the cheerful Japanese declared themselves honored by his views, and answered in substance, "Please address next communication to town hundred miles farther on." And this kept up through the autumn and early winter of 1931, while respectful assistants of the State Department began to relieve their swivel chair solemnity a little by unrepressed washroom snickers. Secretary Stimson impressed every one in Washington as a man devoutly sincere and conscientious. It is hard to say what he should have done during the developments in Manchuria of autumn, 1931. It is surprising, serving under Hoover as he was, that he did not dodge the mess altogether by saying nothing and appointing a commission. By the time the commission's report would have come in the situation would have been happily past protesting. Stimson paid for his courage with ridicule for his innocuousness. In the position he was in his threats to Japan were as ineffectual as a dog's barking at the moon. Consciously or unconsciously he made the woeful diplomatic blunder of uttering threats he could not back up. And if irreverent underlings snickered around the washrooms of the State Department in Washington, the mirth rose to outright guffaws in all the capitals of the world. In the Far East America lost face.

In the press of the United States, each editor appeared to have nominated himself an international Sherlock Holmes, and thereby arrived at the astounding conclusion that the Japanese harbored territorial designs on the continent of Asia. "It is patent -- " began some of them. "Unfortunately the evidence leaves but the one inference - " concluded others. To people living in the Far East, all this was a circumstance for further humor. Of course, the Japanese hankered after land in Manchuria if fate tossed opportunities in their way, and no Sherlock Holmes induction was needed to see as much. To go through elaborate arguments to establish what was so obvious was about like setting up a Medical Center laboratory to prove that a cat likes canary birds.

American public opinion was censorious, to the degree that it was, chiefly because the antecedent circumstances leading up to the Japanese conquest of Manchuria were not of a kind to get into the cable dispatches. The Japanese capture of Mukden and subsequent Japanese aggressions made the front pages instantly. Thus it appeared to average newspaper readers that the cunning Japanese, like a jaguar from the shadows, had leaped suddenly upon a helpless and wholly unoffending people. The months and years of bandit attacks winked at by Chinese officials, the official propaganda urging the people to obstruct the Japanese in every way possible, manifesting itself in everything from putting rocks on the railway tracks to snipings at and murders of Japanese residents - all this was unknown by the public at large in America.

As our international understandings go, there is nothing reprehensible in one country either financing or operating' enterprises in another country, and the existence of enterprises so financed and operated may well redound to the credit and profit of both parties. American industry was heavily capitalized by London financiers during the nineteenth century. Had our politicians been as contentious and spiteful as those of the Chinese, we should have first eagerly sought this capital, then started a campaign of sabotage and repudiation against the "foul imperialists" who supplied it. At the present time, a heavy percentage of the investment capital of Canadian industries is American-owned. With the Chinese point of view, the Canadians would be busy wrecking our automobile plants in Windsor and throwing brickbats at our consuls. It is a commentary on the state of intelligence among the tens of thousands of university-trained Chinese, the so-called educated group, that among them an official who has negotiated a foreign loan is momentarily hailed as a patriot of public service, and then as soon as the investment takes substance in China, they all join in the chorus of "down with the greedy imperialists" who dare to choke China in their financial stranglehold.

This attitude has been, off and on, characteristic of a good many backward countries, but nowhere else so relentlessly and so stupidly as in China. British capital has built the railroads and street car systems and other projects of public worth in many parts of South America. They were not exactly loved for it, but certainly hostility of a destructive sort has not been apparent to anything like the extent that it has in China in respect to all foreign investments.

The preceding considerations deserve an entry in any presentation of Sino-Japanese relations between September 18, 1931, and January 28, 1932. It was on the latter date that the battle of Chapei began. And it was then, too, that the American public awoke in full force. Airplane, artillery and about everything except gas were suddenly loosed in the thick of one of the world's largest cities, with a determined army of less than a thousand men resisted by an army of fifty or sixty thousand men who traditionally had fled at the first signs of danger, but who now made an unexpected stand in an intricate system of stone and barbwire barricades amid crooked streets of stone and brick houses. The story of that fight was amply told in its spectacular features by newspaper men in Shanghai at the time. It really was worth looking at. By going to the top floors and roofs of high buildings on the north side of the International Settlement, it was possible to look across Soochow Creek down upon the fighting in Chapei. By day the steady rain of air bombs continued, so close that the glitter of each falling missile could be followed with the eye all the way from the plane to the shower of dust and tiles where it struck. After emptying their bomb racks, the planes would go behind the Japanese lines to get more, return to drop those, and so on hour by hour.

And incidentally, people who shudder in alarm at Arthur Brisbane's bedtime reminders about a bomb or two destroying us all would have been reassured in watching the effects at Chapei. Of course, with flocks of TNT bombs raining down in a congested area, somebody was likely to be hurt. Yet in Chapei thousands of bombs were dropped, and. these were augmented by intermittent shelling with three- five- and eight-inch guns, but after five weeks of such activity, with Chapei shattered to the ground, most of the population were still alive. The American Civil War axiom that it takes a man's weight in lead and iron to kill him in warfare seems equally true today. And despite the fact that the Chinese failed to use anti-aircraft guns - permitting the Japanese planes to fly within five hundred feet of the ground at times-large numbers of bombs hit nothing valuable, but merely exploded in streets or courtyards and kicked up a cloud of stones and dirt. I was puzzled at the time by the attitude of Chinese soldiers in their indifference to Japanese airplanes within rifle shot overhead. More than once I was among Chinese soldiers back of the trenches when a Japanese plane dived close overhead, seemingly fearless of their possible rifle fire, while the Chinese soldiers did nothing more than stand in the open in plain view and stare up at it, their rifle butts on the ground. The only guess is that the Chinese hesitated to draw machine gun replies or direct bomb aim at themselves.

Most of the shelling was at night, so that the foreigners who were trying to sleep anywhere around that side of town had a hard job. The eight-inch shells shook the windows a mile away, and going to the roofs to see how affairs were getting on, we could get a good view almost every night of the burning buildings being torn to pieces by the high explosive shells, the flaming beams tossed high into the air. From the promptness with which fires followed the falling of the shells, incendiary charges were evidently used abundantly. The roar of the many machine guns was continuous for long periods, and along with the popping of grenades and trench mortars, the whole business made a firstclass battle. Everybody conceded that the Nineteenth Route Army under Tsai Ting-Kai was doing very well. The Chinese civilians in the Settlement were jubilant. That was the first time in modern history that a Chinese army had shown ability to stand up against anything, let alone this ferocious battering.

When the Japanese found the Chinese positions could not be taken by frontal assault, without wasteful loss of man power, they summoned reserves, more artillery, and set about shelling the Chinese out. They shelled the civilian area of Chapei back of the Chinese trenches, and this slaughter of perhaps fifteen thousand Chinse non-combatants stirred public opinion abroad. From the point of view of military expediency, this was the best way to dislodge the Chinese - to level the buildings sheltering their supply lines. What finally won for the Japanese was an encircling movement from the north, via Kiangwan village, threatening the Chinese rear. Everybody wondered why they didn't do this sooner.

At Kiangwan, five or six miles from Shanghai, the Chinese dead were lying thick in the trenches several days after the armistice. Most of them seemed very young boys - frail youths of sixteen or so, their wrists looking hardly strong enough to manage a service rifle. The soldiers I saw in Chapei during the fighting looked much more mature and sturdier. Walking about the ruins of either Chapei or Kiangwan was dangerous after the battle, for the Chinese soldiers, before retreating, had planted a good many bombs in the dust and weeds, with trigger wires across the paths. Several visitors were killed and many narrowly escaped death. A considerable number of Japanese shells, unexploded, lay around, suggesting that they ought to improve their ammunition.

One aspect of this battle has not been satisfactorily explained. That is the reason for the mysterious concentration, before hostilities began, of a large Chinese army along the edge of that part of the International Settlement occupied by the Japanese. It was this concentration that alarmed the Japanese, and caused them to demand a withdrawal. The substance of the Chinese answer, before the tension reached a climax, was that the territory where they were was their own and they could quarter troops where they pleased. That was legally true, but from the standpoint of common sense there was no imaginable motive in the concentration right under the Japanese kitchen windows, so to speak, except as a gesture of hostility. The Settlement line is marked by immense iron gates and grilled fences on each street opening from the Settlement into Chapei. The area at the time hostilities were brewing was densely crowded with dwellings all around and upon the boundary line, occupied by middle class Chinese for the most part, with some slums. It was an odd place for an army of peaceful intentions to start digging in, and the Japanese over on the other side of the line had just cause for alarm.

The Chinese stalled at first in the matter of withdrawing the troops. The mayor of the Chinese part of Shanghai, including Chapei, evidently saw the Japanese meant business, and sent a note to the effect that he could arrange matters satisfactorily. Meanwhile, before the mayor could make good this promise, granting that he intended to, the Japanese started moving a force of several hundred bluejackets toward the threatened part of their section of the Settlement. Suddenly people in that part of Shanghai were startled by the popping of rifle and machine gun fire. The five weeks' battle was on. Japanese said they were fired upon as they advanced to take up a defensive position. That is a point for historians to hash over in years to come. It seemed likely to foreigners who know the Chinese that the Japanese were correct, for Chinese soldiers under cover with rifles in their hands are not notoriously reluctant in shooting them off, either at anything or nothing.

Americans who venture about much in China, anywhere near where soldiers are, are fired upon frequently with no provocation at all, and other foreigners fare no better. Keeping in mind the vigorous anti- Japanese campaign that the government had sponsored, and the character of the hoodlum Chinese soldiery, it is not a great tax upon credulity to suppose that snipers opened up on the advancing Japanese.

The fact that they had been given "no chance" to withdraw the menacing army was much capitalized by the Chinese. In that particular it is evident that the Japanese had the worse side in the judgment of persons abroad. The Japanese, however, wanted to know what the army was doing there in the first place, and contended that the Chinese were too treacherous to trust in negotiations and promises alone, and that they felt obliged to move troops forward as a protective measure, exercising the same right to concentrate troops on their side of the line as the Chinese maintained in concentrating troops originally in a position threatening the Japanese civilians. American army officers in Shanghai generally expressed belief in the report that Japanese troops were fired upon by Chinese without provocation, but added that knowing the Chinese irresponsibility in such a case, the Japanese commanders had purposely ordered their men forward along a route clearly visible to Chinese snipers. The Japanese leaders expected to draw Chinese fire, and thus have an opportunity to attack a despised enemy that had been baiting Japanese in Shanghai for months past. There may be a good deal of truth in such reasoning. There is a streak of Prussianism in the Japanese military machine, and its officers are not averse to trying out their smoothly mechanized companies.

The Japanese made a great mistake in not publicizing their grievances more to the world before they struck, both in Manchuria and in Shanghai. If they had protested repeatedly to the League about Chinese atrocities through the summer of 1931, and gone through the futile conventionalities of calling for League admonishments to China, they would gradually have built up a fair case for themselves, because factually they really had a much better case than the world appreciated. The array of atrocities they had suffered, stirred up by Chinese factional leaders purely to make a show of patriotism to hide their own depredations, stood as an immense total.

In previous political periods in China the Japanese had been able to buy anything they wanted. But in time the factional leaders became too numerous, and changed too often, for the Japanese to obtain any sort of tranquility in their enterprises by cash handouts. Instead of having two or three blackmailers on the Chinese side to deal with, the Japanese now had half a dozen, with these being steadily supplanted by others. And the authority of these was commonly more limited than in previous times, when settling with one general or high government official might reasonably insure noninterference over a wide territory, or even the whole of China, until that high dignitary was ousted. It has already been mentioned that the Japanese later had to make a half dozen or so separate "peace" arrangements with the various Chinese "loyal" generals fighting against them up to the summer of 1933. Each one had to be settled with separately, and the bid of each was in proportion to the strength of his army. And significantly, as an aside, each of these Chinese generals promptly turned against the Chinese central government (for which he had allegedly been fighting) after getting a settlement from Japan, and demanded another heavy settlement from his own country to cease operations against Chiang Kai-chek and the Soong gang. It is small wonder that the Japanese at Shanghai, dealing with a bunch of that color, put more faith in front line troops than in promises that had never meant anything in the history of modern China.

The Chapei episode almost occurred at Foochow. I was not in Foochow at the time, for until April, 1932, I was serving in Shanghai. But the affair was fresh in the minds of everybody there when I arrived, and the minutes of it, of course, were available. What had happened was that in Foochow, as all over China, student secret societies, organized mainly for extortion purposes but doing a little Japanese baiting now and then, had threatened to kill a local Japanese school teacher and his wife. No offense was alleged against the school teacher. He merely happened to be selected as the most accessible, because he lived in a house not ideally pro- tected and next to a neighborhood mostly Chinese. His work was teaching the Japanese children of the city, and he had no contacts with the Chinese to cause provocation. Anyway, true to the absurd international courtesy which extends to China recognition as a sovereign nation, the Japanese Consul General placed the case before the local Chinese provincial authorities and local police and demanded protection of the school teacher's house. The Japanese Consul General could have assigned Japanese guards, but that would be an offense under international usages in a country recognized as sovereign.

The Chinese officials stationed Chinese soldiers in front of the teacher's house. These remained several days and nights, changing in relays. Then suddenly one night, without notice, the Chinese guard was not there. With no explanation at all, it had vanished. Before the teacher and his wife could remedy this they were set upon and murdered in their home. It was the old story of Chinese police and military treachery. If the Chinese officials had not actually connived with the secret society to murder the teacher and his wife, at least they were evidently tacit partners in having the guard conveniently absent when it was to be done.

Japanese feeling ran high. Consul General Tamura called for the Chinese officials, said he accused them of nothing, but in as much as they had failed to guard the house as agreed, for their negligence they must indemnify the family of the teacher with $50,000. The Chinese officials tried to stall. "You have heard what I have to say, Gentlemen," said Tamura. "You have your choice. I have wirelessed for gunboats and they are on the way. I strongly advise your earnest consideration of my terms." More than once the Chinese officials, afraid of being shelled out of their jobs, tried to come back and argue. Tamura refused to see them until they brought the money. After an all night parley the Chinese officials arrived about dawn with the cash. Shortly afterward the Japanese gunboats steamed in, their commanders probably disappointed that the case was all over. This was a month before the Shanghai battle.

Tactics of that kind work well with the Chinese. Tamura was polite and courteous to them, as he invariably was on many occasions afterward when I saw him with them. He was firm and he was fair. He handled every case with the Chinese in that same manner. But interesting to relate, after that experience the Chinese officials acquired a miraculous ability to prevent a recurrence of murders or any other kind of villainy against the Japanese in Foochow. Japanese became at once the best-treated and most respected foreigners in the port. While the American consulate, with our sentimental policy, was jammed with cases of outrages against Americans, and the British consulate, slightly sterner, had a fair number of cases, the Japanese consulate, protecting ten times as many persons as all the rest of the foreign consulates put together, had not a single serious case after Tamura's able handling of the murder incident and his show of readiness to summon gunboats at any hour. And day after day, passing the Japanese consulate on the way to lunch, I saw Chinese coolies lined up trying to get visas to go over into Formosa - Japanese territory - where they could work without being plundered by their own officials.

What happened in Foochow has been duplicated all over China.

Firmness, backed by a realistic government policy, saves trouble in the end. It is understood in China, and it is the only thing Chinese respect. I saw the proof of that when Tamura was leaving Foochow to serve as Consul General in Singapore. The Chinese officials, because they respected him, liked him. They honored him on his departure as few foreign officials have ever been honored there. The Chinese at large in the city spoke of him with actual affection. Not a single other foreign consul in the city was a tenth as popular. And decidedly to the point: The three thousand Japanese subjects in Foochow were unharmed and their property unmolested after he showed his hand firmly just once. The Chinese can prevent atrocities, to the Japanese or anybody else, when they want to.

"But that's just fear," commented the missionaries upon the phenomenon described. "It is much more worthy to gain the affection and love of a people, and have them treat us well from a true spirit of fraternity in kindness."

But returning to the Chapei incident, everyone remembers the storm it loosed in America. A group of Harvard professors solemnly outlawed Japan. A Washington, D. C., editor I heard of received two waste baskets full of indignant letters demanding a declaration of war upon "the mad dog of Asia." Women's clubs wanted a boycott, congenially willing to spoil our best Far East customer, one taking twice as much of our goods every year as China, over an issue upon which they were almost wholly uninformed, in favor of a group recurrently massacring our citizens for years and repudiating foreign obligations.

American businessmen and government officers on the scene, both groups circumstantially muzzled so they could say not a word, nearly foamed with disgust every time they picked up an American newspaper. "My God," was the comment, "have they all gone completely crazy back there? I wish a few of them could be here and deal with these bloody cutthroats and pirates just about ten minutes. They'd be reaching for guns to join the Japanese instead of yapping about a boycott against them." Conservative, reflective comment conceded that the Japanese were wrong in taking over Manchuria, according to the treaties, pacts, protocols and the rest. It was interposed, however, that to a considerable degree the Japanese were justified on other grounds. The treaties had not been able to prevent Chinese obstruction that rendered the Japanese holdings precarious. After years of Chinese evasion, secret sabotage and extortion, the Japanese could well conclude that they could never protect their property while all the territory adjoining it remained a retreat for Chinese whose chief sport it was to visit atrocities upon the "enemy." All this had been suffered in time of peace. When the Japanese answered, the world called it war. Therein arose intense bitterness in the chrysanthemum islands. "You read only of what we have just done," lamented Japanese writers. "You do not go into what we have endured for years and years with patience."

Other Japanese comment might be paraphrased thus: "We are bitterly in want. World economic conditions have reduced millions of our people to acute distress. Our investments in Manchuria are vital to us. Shall we see them slowly destroyed because, by a technical pretext, what the Chinese are doing to us is not called war? They kill our citizens, they destroy our property, they propagandize unceasingly to urge the ignorant to ruin our investments. Shall we stand by, strong as we are, our army timidly aloof, while our enemies escape to continue their destruction under cover of world sentiment, cherished by parlor theorists who have nothing to lose?"

And to thousands of Americans and British in the Far East, used as they were to just such tactics as those by which the Japanese suffered, the Japanese side was convincing. I should say that the great majority of businessmen were quietly pro-Japanese, and most of the American consuls pro-Japanese who had been in China for any significant period.

The anti-Japanese boycott enlisted the sincere support of Chinese who were ready to forego purchasing Japanese goods in order to injure an enemy, even at sacrifice to themselves. But general observation, aside from reports from all over the country compiled by investigators, established that the Chinese who voluntarily supported it were very few in number, and but a microscopic fraction of the total population. However the boycott may have been initiated against Japan in 1931, it at once became, like everything else in China, an atrocious racket. The groups enforcing the boycott were in nine cases out of ten opportunistic hoodlums, absolutely lacking themselves in the patriotism which they claimed for their activities.

In typical Chinese fashion, the Chinese were ready to cut off their own noses to spite the Japanese, after driving the Japanese to answering with violence the violence that had been practiced upon them. Incompetent to conduct military resistance, though possessed of some of the ablest German military advisers, millions of soldiers and numerous trained chemists and engineers, the Chinese answered with the boycott.

This was sponsored by the Kuomintang, the alternate name of the Nanking central government. But even opponents of the Nanking central government belong to the Kuomintang. It is a political party, in theory a heritage of Sun Yat-sen. Its tenets are anti-foreignism, anti- Christianity, repudiation of debts, cancellation of foreign treaty rights in China, reverence for Sun Yat-sen, and a few other things. Meeting as members and leaders of the Kuomintang, officials of the central government decide what the central shall do openly and officially. If a part of the program is too risky and offensive for them to announce openly, as official, it is advanced as Kuomintang policy. The same men govern in each case. In many cases no names are signed to Kuomintang edicts. This is true when they are especially offensive and sinister. Every one knows, though, that the duly constituted government leaders stand behind them, because in other instances the party leadership is made clear. The Kuomintang operates as a society in many places where little or no respect or allegiance prevails toward the government. That is, Chiang Kai-chek can reach a much wider audience if he speaks as a Kuomintang man than if he speaks as a central government man. He is both. His Kuomintang policies may be supported where his government policies are not. This is a complicated business that would take a long explanation. But it is just the sort of arrangement appealing to Chinese temperament. The Kuomintang rallying point is the picture of Sun Yat-sen, which hangs wherever the Kuomintang meets, and hangs in all Chinese schools. The party adherents make a kowtow to it once a week. Chinese will respect somebody dead where they will have no loyalty to anybody living, outside their own families. The Kuomintang explains how the Chinese, having no unity in government, can attain at times a unity in anti-foreign activities. It is as if everybody in the United States were a Ku Kluxer, and would support Ku Klux Klan policies where he would be a dissenter in open political measures. The Kuomintang in China is a combination of the Elks, the Masons, the Ku Klux Klan, the Black Hand, and the Al Capone gang all rolled into one.

Thus, when the Kuomintang called for a boycott, most of the people of any influence in China could be enlisted. Each welcomed anything providing a wide range of undercover activity, with profits in the offing. In practice, swarms of students, too shiftless to work themselves, with desperate hoodlums of the same resolution, set about becoming self-appointed boycott "inspectors." Thousands of Chinese merchants, caught unexpectedly with stocks of Japanese goods, had their goods looted or were obliged to pay heavy blackmail demands. Any gang, anywhere, could set itself up as a "boycott inspection" squad. With extortion one of the most widely practiced arts and industries in China at all times, the activities in this new golden opportunity hardly need description. The "inspectors" not only helped themselves to goods, along with chopping off an ear or a head here and there, but they held open auctions in the streets, after dragging out some poor merchant's sale stock which had contained, allegedly, goods of Japanese origin - and walked off with the money in their pockets. One of my dealers was thus ruined. He had borrowed money to pay for the goods. Humiliated, knowing he could never raise the few hundred dollars in his lifetime, he took the loss with self-control, invited his friends to a dinner the next night, handed each a note saying good-by, and next morning climbed the mountain to a Buddhist monastery, never to look upon the face of a familiar acquaintance again. Other dealers in the locality were slain outright.

Then the hoodlums ran out of dealers with Japanese goods, and to keep up the profits started picking on dealers carrying no Japanese goods at all, against whom they trumped up charges. Both British and American goods, imported straight from England and America, were confiscated as Japanese. The boycott gangs provided, too, a reprisal system against merchants who had offended other merchants. It was simply necessary to accuse one of handling enemy goods, pay the "inspectors" a small fee, and they would wreck the rival's establishment.

One of our official protests regarding seizure of American goods on the trumped up twaddle that they were Japanese brought the reply from the Chinese authorities that the protest should be addressed to the anti-boycott association. That was typically Chinese. Officially, the Chinese government was able to deny to the world that it was behind the anti-Japanese boycott. The boycott, it main- tained, was the spontaneous will of the people. Yet in actual correspondence a Chinese government official could refer an official letter to an unofficial body, whose authority it disavowed, for a reply.

In the same way that they managed the boycott, the Chinese arrange all other anti-foreign activities. They set up an organization manned by government men who act for that particular purpose as party men, not as officials. Then when the trouble starts, the sponsors blandly reply, "The incident is deeply regretted. It was the work of irresponsible parties, unknown to the authorities. Unfortunately, such an act could not be anticipated or prevented."

China has no national economics in the sense that other nations have, and could thus perpetrate a boycott which ruined thousands of individual Chinese without appreciably suffering nationally. Chinese economics are within the family unit, and the boycott ruined an untold number of Chinese families. But they ruin one another on one pretext or another all the time: the boycott was just one more thing to bear for the people at large. Millions being ruined in some fashion all the time and millions more being born and growing up to the same fate - that is China.

As to Japanese occupation of Manchukuo (Manchu - pure people, kuo, country), it is clearly a blessing to the thirty million or so Chinese living there, whatever the laments may be over the fact that the tenets of a piece of paper, designed to protect humanity's best interests, were violated. In cold pragmatism, it does not seem that that piece of paper - the so-called Nine Power Pact - ever during the length of its observance did a single person on the entire planet one mite of good. Yet oddly, as a moral paradox, its lamented violation seems imminently to achieve a stability and well-being for millions who without such violation would have been doomed to struggle on in the misery of a beautiful theory.

Extenuation of any breach in a solemn pact is dangerous doctrine, and carried far, would clearly undo a great deal that is worth-while. But where it is now fait accompli, there is satisfaction in the evidence that results better rather than worse may be expected.

The average Chinese does not care what flag flies over him, just so he can work and go his way unoppressed. He has no allegiances except his purse and his family. From their record in Formosa and Chosen and Dairen, we can expect of the Japanese a commendable regime in Manchukuo. And even if they do less ably there than elsewhere, they will assuredly do better than the outrageous tyrants they expel. Never in history have the Chinese met conquerors who were not kinder to them than their masters of their own race. Thus as a proposition in broad human welfare, above the inapplicable sentimentalities of colored cloth, we can ask who is injured, as against the millions benefited?


To a considerable degree the problem we face in the Far East today is but our own share of the perplexity confronting civilization in the modern world. Our Far East problem propounds the question of how an advanced nation, competent to meet its obligations to others, shall deal with a country whose inhabitants have demonstrated their incompetence to fulfill the same responsibility.

This is a problem difficult to solve, but at the same time one nearly impossible to evade. World conditions press us into relations with all countries, whether we desire such relations or not. The question heard now and then, "Why can't we let the Chinese entirely alone?" does not reflect a background of mature consideration. Even if the whole civilized world arrived jointly at such a resolution, which, of course, could not be expected under conditions of interlocking international trade, our perplexity would not be altogether ended. Ocean navigation requires the maintenance of lighthouses along every coast, occasional shipwrecks enforce contacts, and there are four world powers - France, Great Britain, Japan and Russia - who have territory fronting upon Chinese soil. The question of leaving the Chinese alone is answered for us by world conditions into which all of us, including the Chinese, are born.

Furthermore, a sudden decision to leave the Chinese alone would not accomplish anything favorable to the Chinese themselves. Tens of millions of them now live by what they can produce and sell to the rest of the world. Foreign capital, much of it invited by the Chinese, has investments in China too large to be lightly dismissed. According to the United States Department of Commerce, American investments in China, exclusive of missionary holdings, totaled $255,768,000, American money, in 1931. Missionary investments are estimated at $80,000,000. Great Britain and Japan are said to have investments of $1,250,000,000 each in China, while Soviet Russia, which owns the leg of the Trans-Siberian Railway reaching through what is now Manchukuo, is estimated to have an investment of $300,000,000 in China and Manchukuo together.

These investments evidently include in each case holdings of Chinese bonds for various governmental and public service loans. China has defaulted on interest or principal to the extent of more than $100,000,000. Most of these investments originated years ago, when the world had more confidence in Chinese ability to progress than now. Several years back, when disturbances in India became acute, there was much talk of a movement of British capital from India to China. But as matters have turned out, China seems no safer place for investments than India, and in fact decidedly less so. But the point of these figures is that the total of foreign capital in China provides an enormous payroll for Chinese employees, and at the same time constitutes an enormous obstacle to any lessened intimacy of relations between any world power and China. No corporation cares to withdraw without compensation, and the Chinese are not prepared to render compensation.

This financial aspect of our relations with China is about as cheerful as talk of canceling the World War debts. It is the old story of ready assurances for ready money, paper guarantees alertly offered by the Chinese and alertly accepted by foreign financiers seeing lively profits ahead; then, grumbling and recriminations when the time for settlement comes, plus supervening conditions of chaos which limit or destroy the earning power of the investments.

Our own investments in China, aside from securities, include such things as warehouses, docks, oil depots for selling kerosene and gasoline, bank buildings, steamship offices and locally operated river boats. Early in the present century, according to magazine articles of the time, J. P. Morgan & Company undertook to build a railroad between Hankow and Canton, but after several years quit in disgust at the obstacles put in their way. The road was started finally with British capital, but this company too was obstructed at every turn by the Chinese, and the incompleted portion of the line is now rusting to pieces after a quarter of a century of dilly-dallying and tied-up capital. So it has been with innumerable ventures of money in the Flowery Kingdom, where unsuspected thorns surround every luring blossom. The figures quoted on standing investments in China now show that many companies, American and otherwise, were not as fortunate or as far-sighted as J. P. Morgan & Company in getting out in time. Stockholders or bondholders of those concerns remaining there will not consent to any withdrawal without reimbursement, and by all principles of equity there is no reason to expect them to do so. The investments were satisfactory to all parties and bona fide at the time. The commitments of the Chinese government were accepted as coming from a body recognized as sovereign by the Chinese themselves and accepted as such by other nations. Meanwhile, the dog-in-the-manger deadlock for many foreign investments continues, with the Chinese unwilling to cooperate in making them pay and the foreigners unwilling to quit and abandon their property.

The answer to what we should have done in the past is easier to answer than what we should do now. For better or worse, we are the heirs of a serious world problem in the Far East. And yet the answer to what we should do now, while complex, need not entail the dangers of international conflict that are so ominously sounded on all sides.

Our record of international dealings during the present century manifests a clear desire to be fair to all. There is in it the suggestion that at times our liberality has overstretched its mark, leaving us unfair to ourselves. Specifically in the case of China, we have been extremely indulgent. We have permitted our citizens there to suffer abuses directly the result of an overlenient policy. If this leniency accomplished anything worth while for the Chinese, it might have some justification. But we cannot see that it has. No fair-minded and thinking person among us would advocate a policy of ruthless penalties upon a people so backward and incompetent. We are obliged to observe, however, that the Chinese have shown themselves ably alert to take advantage of our condoning attitude, and penalize us heavily at every sign of greater laxity. That the happy medium-stern insistence upon our rights without cruel abuse of our strength-should be our aim is the conviction of every levelheaded American on the scene.

The attainment of this happy medium will be impossible as long as public ignorance in America remains as deplorably great as it is at present in regard to conditions in China. This ignorance is largely due to the fact that our Department of State is not governed by reports from our consulates in China nearly as much as it is governed by the clipping bureau in the big gray stone building at Seventeenth Street and Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington.

Every morning the scissors squad there synopsizes what seems to be the prevailing opinion among the hundreds of newspapers received from all parts of the United States. The views of the prominent editors, which is to say the prominent publishers, receive most consideration. But the aggregate of opinion in the smaller newspapers is a powerful force. The Department of State, like all of our government branches, believes that the small city and small town sentiment is the voice of the nation at large. The summary of national newspaper opinion at home is heeded as the master's voice. For in foreign affairs, ordinarily, our Government has been a following government, not a leading government. It endeavors to carry out the wishes of the people instead of acting strictly according to the policies that confidential information from abroad might dictate. Often what the people have wanted, basing their desires upon incomplete facts, has been contrary to our best interests as established by subsequent developments. For years the American public has clamored for leniency toward China. Our Government has obeyed that request.

Thus we have in Washington the odd spectacle of a Department of State equipped with hundreds of lifelong specialists in particular fields, having access to information beyond that in reach of the public, relying upon the public for guidance instead of on its confidential information from specialists. The Department of State keeps its eyes glued upon eight-point type to determine what the people want done, while the Department's investigators abroad wonder why our national policy often runs counter to advices from the field. This condition is not so true in regard to Europe, which most Americans now know fairly well. But it is strikingly true in regard to the Far East, which few Americans know at all. Knowing nothing about it, however, is not recognized as an impediment to violent convictions by many Americans in the matter of our policy there. The immediate point of these remarks is to point out that no amount of competence in our Foreign Service corps in China can altogether overcome the force of misinformation at home in the United States, for the simple reason that our Department of State is almost invariably guided by opinion at home in dealing with the Chinese. This national opinion may be relied upon as sound only as soon as reliable information begins to filter through as a guide. To date, with all avenues of truth substantially blocked, national opinion has merely followed the misinformation supplied, and our Far East relations have suffered accordingly.

Most of the time our arrangement of a "following" Department of State has worked fairly well. It has many advantages of safety over the organization in many other countries, where closeted diplomats decide on secret treaties and entangling alliances which the populations concerned cannot know about until they bear catastrophes as fruit. Our own foreign affairs organization is not of a kind to facilitate secret intrigue. Nobody can go very far in that direction at Washington without the American public's getting wind of things.

But if the public, with special attention to preachers, editors, student forum leaders, women's club presidents, professors and the others who write resolutions, is to direct our course in the Far East, then by all means there is a need of more reliable information among them. To date only the sentimentalist side has been heard, and we know that this side has flagrantly omitted a great deal essential for a balanced judgment. The grimly realistic dispatches from officers on the terrain, gathering every scrap of illuminating data, have been overruled altogether.

The next question is, allowing that public acquaintance with the facts might dictate a sterner policy toward the Chinese, how could such a policy achieve results without armed conflict?

There is a variety of ways known to the Division of Far Eastern Affairs in the Department of State. In many cases simply strong expression of disapproval from Washington will accomplish a great deal. China, like some of the Latin American countries, relies heavily upon our diplomatic support. Many thinkers on the scene in China feel that we might be more discriminating in our diplomatic support of the Chinese, and restrict such support to occasions when the Chinese properly deserve it. Another reliance is the sanction or nonsanction of loans. Our loan of $50,000,000 to China in June of this year, it is believed by informed persons, could have achieved a great deal in exactions of better protection for American property and lives in China had our Government decided to make such exactions a condition of the loan. Instead the loan was blithely handed over as if nobody in Washington could think of a better use for fifty million dollars than offering it to a government which has openly repudiated past obligations, is now in default to the extent of some hundred million dollars, and spends much of its energies manufacturing propaganda against us along with sponsoring or winking at atrocities against American lives and property.* If the Chinese can get all they want out of us without according any faint degree of respect in return, they are not likely to feel any compunctions of conscience in doing so.

For more than a generation America and Great Britain have supported China diplomatically against the demands of other countries. It is significant that during this period America and Great Britain have been the worst sufferers from Chinese disregard of foreign rights, not counting the recent Japanese losses in times of actual strife. Scarcely any comment is heard oftener in China than that the Chinese have nothing in their temperament or tradition inspiring them to reciprocate indulgent consideration with respect. Instead they have invariably met indulgence with effrontery and redoubled

* Just as this book is going to press cable dispatches state that the American cotton sold to the Chinese at discount rates under the loan agreement has been offered by Chinese bankers to Japan at a handsome profit for the Chinese. This is much like the history of some of our flood relief supplies seized by Chinese officials and sold at famine prices to victims for whom they were intended as charity.

outrages. Just as the individual coolie affects fury and screams accusations if overpaid, in the same fashion the Chinese leaders make a target of the foreign nationals whose government shows signs of what is to them incomprehensible softness. Consideration for the less fortunate is naturally not understood in a country where a man may drown within ten feet of a boat or lie injured in the streets without attracting a helping hand from anybody among the spectators. So far as our relations with China go, none of us would advocate meeting the Chinese on their own terms, with their own revolting hard-heartedness toward distress. At the same time, there is no need of briefing indulgent in a manner to increase disrespect. If we are going to be generous, it would be good policy to insist that the Chinese make some show of fairness in return.

We cannot expect the Chinese central government to control isolated bandit mobs and all the packs of incendiary radical students. We have a right to expect, however, that the Chinese central government, dominated by the Kuomintang, shall encourage and wherever possible compel its subsidiary officials to respect American property. It definitely is not encouraging them to that end now, but instead, to gain face with the anti-foreign student radicals, it encourages the looting of American property. In a great many instances of which I had first hand familiarity, subordinate officials who were guilty of commandeering or stealing American property were not in any way reprimanded by Nanking. The number of such cases, if the experience of all our consular officers now in China were checked, would run into the thousands since the present Nationalist government took charge in 1927. Civilians who burn American buildings or openly steal American goods are directly shielded by the officials in such a manner that such activites are really encouraged. At the present time, all over China, a considerable percentage of American-owned buildings are being permanently occupied by the hordes of Chinese soldiers who have simply moved in and driven the Americans or the Chinese employees out. At the time I left China, early this year, the Chinese central government was not making any move to have the soldiers it listed as "loyal" evacuate these properties. So far as I can learn, no move has since been made to evacuate them. The soldiers prefer foreign buildings to the dwellings of their own people. For one reason, the foreign buildings have thicker walls, and thus afford a better barricade in case of attack. In addition, the foreign buildings do not ordinarily leak, and they have raised dry floors instead of the damp mud floors of Chinese houses.

Consular requests for evacuation of churches, schools and hospitals are commonly ignored. In the summer of 1932 the American Legation at Peiping asked all the American consulates for a monthly list from their districts of occupied property. Presumably the aim was to take up the matter with the Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs direct. But so far as any of us heard, nothing ever came of this.

And when an American-owned building is finally abandoned after extended occupancy by Chinese troops, it would not be used by a selfrespecting New England farmer for his horse. The Chinese, in many instances, keep adding layers of their human filth under them, covering it anew with straw each day, until in time the floors of a once tidy building are more revolting than a pig pen. No compensation is possible under our present policy for such damage.

In Fukien Province, in obedience to the Minister's instructions, we sent out a questionnaire each month requesting information from our missionary population of two hundred as to which buildings were currently occupied. Some of the missionaries would supply information readily. Others would supply it only upon repeated urging. Others were unwilling to supply any information derogatory to the Chinese, though their own buildings were being occupied and they themselves ousted. Our most cooperative missionaries in Foochow were the Dominican Fathers, who had property scattered about in various parts of the province. Most of the missionaries felt that their usefulness to the Chinese could best be served by keeping silent about small indignities suffered, an attitude which the Chinese have turned very handily to their advantage. Some of the American mission buildings in China have been occupied now for several years consecutively. When the Chinese were bidding for American friendship after Chapei there was a faint stir among some of the armies to find themselves other quarters, and in several places in Fukien we actually cleared churches and schools of them entirely.

As has been mentioned before, a marked improvement toward Americans was noted all over China after Chapei. This confirmed what veterans on the scene had maintained all along - that the Chinese could mend their ways toward us any time they cared to. The diplomatic history of the Chinese shows that in international affairs they are what they are in individual affairs. Their pressure against us never relaxes. When we give way they advance. If we push hard in return, they recede.

The foremost impression of an Anglo-Saxon in contact with the Chinese of all classes in China is the eternal pressure of the people. It is not a robust, lusty assault upon our consciousness. It is more like the steady seeping upon us of quicksand, or the infiltration into everything about us of an infinitely numerous army of termites, not openly bold but eternally watching and relentless. A counter-vigilance is the price of survival, whether the responsibility is a government office or a commercial concern. Any matter not checked up daily will go wrong. And in what they want of us, the average of the Chinese do not understand the Occidental "no." An applicant who is told he cannot enter a school, or a Chinese wanting a visa, will come back day after day, week after week, sitting and waiting and blinking, hearing the same verdict over again a hundred times and pretending each time he does not quite understand. They have an enormous advantage over us in their absence of impatience. Either in pursuing what they wish, or in evading what they prefer not to do, they have no sense of finality. Peculiarly, a Chinese is about the most difficult thing alive against which to maintain a consistent anger. You may know that a particular individual is a thorough rascal; he will disgust you with his supplications at one time, at another he will infuriate you through and through with his insolence. But - he is the most talented being in creation in soothing wrath that has become too hot for comfort. Those who have had experience with foreigners are fairly skilled in judging just what a foreigner (or a foreign government) will stand for. Being gamblers, however, they invariably, in the course of their history with every country, become too presuming, and receive the force of a long accumulated indignation.

Yet even in defeat the Chinese generally get off lightly. Both Great Britain and France were driven to trounce them soundly during the last century, well before there was any Nine-Power Pact to prevent seizing large areas of territory. The combined armies of the powers scattered them in every direction at the raising of the Peking siege in 1900. But a Chinese in defeat can look more pitiful than anything else alive. In none of the instances of conquest cited above did the Chinese lose anything like the territory that a European country might have lost under similar conditions of defeat. The Chinese lost next to nothing. The foreign takings from China proper were measured in acres here and there, for use as bases, instead of whole provinces. Only with the Japanese did the Chinese encounter a hard unyielding sternness against which their talents were useless. The Japanese took Korea and Formosa in 1895.

This talent for mollifying superior strength in an emergency must be a very ancient gift with the Chinese. In the thirteenth century Jenghis Khan, who spared few of those who resisted him, spared the Chinese. It is said that in a blast of fury he first resolved to exterminate the last man, woman and child of the country and make of China a vast pasture for his army's horses, then relented and set about the extermination of other empires. His descendants fell into Chinese ideas of luxury; and within a hundred years the posterity of the famous Genghis had been largely absorbed by the Chinese, who went on puddling their rice fields as if nothing had happened. An approximate repetition of this took place after the Manchus came out of the forests of Manchuria and conquered the Chinese in 1644, though the Manchus staved off dissolution by forbidding intermarriage of Manchus with Chinese and by taking other precautions.

Proper appreciation of this Chinese ability in gaining sympathy is essential to intelligent diplomatic dealings with them. Yet it is nearly impossible for people without residence in China to appreciate the extent to which tears, plaints, and all sorts of sympathy-winning actions can be simulated by Chinese in the most cold-blooded spirit of gaining an end. For every Chinese, from highest to lowest, all the acts of life are concentrated upon extracting, from those who mean nothing to him, what he can for the benefit of himself and his clan. Just as all creatures wage the battle of life with the best weapons given them by nature, the Chinese wage theirs with their foremost weapon - acting. They have no talent for warfare. They are not inventive. They cannot compete in industrial organization. They are at heart seemingly immune to the loyalties by which national unity might be achieved to give them greater strength. Thus about all that is left to them protectively is their remarkable ability to detect the emotional susceptibilities of opponents, and to attack these with the display best calculated to achieve the desired results. The display may be designed to induce sympathy, to mollify anger, to inspire generosity, or to flatter conceit. But the Chinese are adept at deciding what method is best, and before this talent many a sturdy diplomat has given way against the accusations of his rational self in the manner that Samson melted in the arms of the cooing Delilah.

It is as natural for a Chinese to employ the words, looks, and gestures that will win his point - usually sympathy - from another in an emergency as it is for a 'possum to feign death. Against such inherent talents, of affected emotion, perfected by practice in almost every act of a Chinese's life from infancy on, our American traditions provide no adequate defense. If they tamed Genghis Kahn, the toughest opponent mankind has seen since the dawn of history, the simple-hearted average American obviously has a poor chance.

And when it comes to money we should recognize that the Chinese are as hard as rocks. The gracious manner that Americans associate with generosity is often conspicuous in the Chinese, and as hosts they are generous in their hospitality. But as for generosity of attitude toward money in the sense of subordinating it to anything else, the Chinese are out of our ken altogether. The evidences of this are abundant. For example, at a Chinese wedding there is always a bookkeeper at the door to take presents. He enters in a book the amount of the guest's present, if it is cash, or an exact itemization and appraisal of it if it is in goods. A "spotter," something like those employed in certain American quick lunch restaurants, roams nearby to make note of anybody who squeezes in without giving anything, in case the throng is too great for the bookkeeper to do the spotting. This system is intended to measure the exact degree of obligation incurred by the family toward all comers. Should one of the guests later have a wedding in his own house, he will get a present of exactly the same value as he gave, not a penny more. To an American it sounds jarring to hear "Five dollars" or "Ten dollars" called aloud as his envelope of red tissue paper is torn open and the amount swiftly counted as he passes inside to accept the hospitality tendered in phrases of elaborate humility upon the invitation he has received. This system is a very sinuous, graceful Chinese way of "facing" the guest into giving a fair sum. It is a first-rate device particularly with the Chinese, who are keenly sensitive to public criticism. No one wants to hear a miserably small sum called after his name within hearing of all the other guests.

President Theodore Roosevelt employed at times the phrase "Chinafication of the United States." He referred, evidently, to the easy molding of American public opinion to a marked sympathy for the Chinese, with absorption by us of a variety of notions that the Chinese would like us to have. He used the terms as a corollary of the "Americanization of China." A quarter of a century has proved him a fair prophet in the matter. The American public has perhaps accepted more sentimental twaddle about China as gospel truth than the Chinese on their side of the Pacific have accepted of so-called American ideas.

The proper emphasis in every phase of our Far Eastern relations is that we are dealing with racial groups, not with treaties and other documents, which may but faintly suggest the real problems and do nothing to solve them. A treaty sounds very much the same, regardless of to whom it applies. But we may expect vast differences in the degree and manner of its observance when we face populations of varying ethical traditions and economic trends. We cannot expect to settle many of our difficulties with the Chinese by the treaty route. Our only chance for improved conditions for American lives and property in China is to maintain a fixed policy, made clear to the people there, of what we shall stand for and what we shall not tolerate. This cannot be set down fully on paper. It will be more than anything else a national attitude, expressed through diplomatic action whenever provocations arise. And as mentioned, it is possible for us to be much more assertive than we have been in recent years without inviting clashes with the Chinese, or evidencing a readiness to bully them in any way. The cardinal principle would be that our general willingness to be considerate and our immense contributions of philanthropy are not to be taken as symptoms that we are willing to submit to atrocities which the Chinese dare not visit upon nationalities other than American.

One danger in our Far Eastern situation which is not well appreciated by Americans at home is that of acting as a backer of the Chinese in their difficulties with other countries. In the years immediately ahead we may expect a recurrence of difficulties between the Chinese and Russia and perhaps between the Chinese and Japan. Because of the immense missionary support of sentiment, infecting the American public here, the Chinese have come to look upon the United States as an ally in whatever trouble they get into. In vulgar parlance, the Chinese always expect America to pull their chestnuts out of the fire. Mindful of the Chinese talent for getting into rows with neighbors, the role of chestnut-puller is one we shall be called upon uncomfortably often to assume if we adhere to it. And if we adhere to it, we shall receive no thanks for our efforts (we have not in the past), nor shall we gain anything in a material way comparable to the needless risks shouldered. Popular opinion here greatly exaggerates the value to us of our China trade. Actually, our exports to China in a good business year total less than one fiftieth - two per cent - of our total export volume. We average to China less than $100,000,000 per year in exports. Our imports from China are slightly less. Canada takes four times as much from us. Mexico takes more in many years, and Cuba's average of purchases is higher. And a pertinent consideration in respect to the exaggerated value of our China trade is that the paper profit is not clear profit, so far as America as a whole is concerned, for the reason that we are put to great expense protecting such commerce as we carry on with China. We are obliged to maintain a fleet of destroyers on the Yangtze and up and down the China coast, to be within hailing distance in case of piracy, which is common all over and all around China. This expense is borne by American taxpayers. Exact figures upon the cost of our protection to American trade in China are lacking, but it may be estimated as several million dollars a year - an expense we should not incur if China were an ordered country, able to offer its own protection.

Our total trade, imports and exports, with all Asia and Oceania in 1929 was $1,336,837,000 - or nearly eight times the value of our combined imports and exports turnover ($164,500,000) with China in the same year. Our trade with Japan in that year was about three times as great as with China. Hence from an economic standpoint, we jeopardize much for little in any business of backing the Chinese to the extent of inviting a clash with other nations in the Pacific. Our sentimental backing of China during the past two years has drawn upon us the problem of increased naval armament. The Japanese became alarmed at Secretary Stimson's tone to the extent of feeling their national security threatened by American intervention in Asia. This fear inspired them to start putting their last yen into a stronger fleet. News of this move on the part of Japan has been mainly responsible for immense increases in the American naval budget. This increase in our fleet alone will probably cost us more than the annual aggregate of our China trade. If we estimate the profits on our exports to China at ten per cent for the sake of the inference, our fight for the alleged Open Door in China (by the methods we pursue) costs us many times each year what our China trade is worth to us.

The Japanese are necessarily in a much more desperate situation in the matter of their economics upon the Asiatic mainland. Our stake there is but a chip compared to our whole world trade and national resources, whereas to Japan her Asiatic mainland holdings mean salvation itself. With these considerations in mind we can appreciate the bitter resentment of the Japanese at our sentimental advice, as they regard it, which is to us a mere parlor theory, while to them it is something touching upon economic survival for the population of the empire.

Their precarious situation, without adequate internal resources and with a rapidly increasing population, has made the Japanese touchy and nervous in a way that we cannot understand without a full review of all the underlying causes. The Japanese have next to nothing to go upon in event of a long war. Their only hope of success in a campaign would be by means of a quick and devastating blow. Hence with their limited capital they have done their best to develop a military machine of utmost efficiency. We do not know how good it really is. It has never been tried out against a first-class opponent under normal conditions. But we should make no mistake in one fact: the Japanese have a pride that exalts patriotism to the height of a fanatical religion, and they will fight, even with the odds against them, at any intolerable affront.

During the last two years there has been much talk in the American press about the Japanese closing the "Open Door." The Open Door policy was vaguely agreed upon by the powers about the middle of the last century. Toward the close of that century John Hay, the American diplomat, enunciated the policy more clearly, and from time to time since many conferences have taken place in regard to it. Briefly stated, it means the maintenance of equal participation by all countries in the trade of China, with territorial aggression by none. Great Britain and America have been the powers principally responsible for such success as the policy has achieved. Without Great Britain and America, China would have been partitioned among the powers several decades ago. But in spite of this slight favor to them - in the diplomatic if not economic and political sense - the Chinese have accused all the powers of gouging from China everything possible. Their apparent conviction is that only their sturdy resistance and unity of spirit have enabled them to fight off such aggregations of military might! Anyway, the Open Door theory is to the fore again with Japan's activities of 1931 and 1932. There is not much room for argument over the point that the Japanese have violated specific understandings in regard to the Open Door. Manchuria may have been independent of China for some years prior to 1931, but in racial tradition and historical background it was definitely affiliated with China, to which it belonged for 287 years up to 1931. The Japanese argument was that while the world attempted to exact of her strict adherence to the Open Door agreement, no effort was made to exact of the Chinese a behavior which would make such adherence on the part of Japan endurable. And there is abundant evidence, as mentioned in the preceding chapter, to indicate that the Chinese presumed too far upon the immunities they held under the support by America and Great Britain of the Open Door policy.

The connection here is with regard to American trade in areas now taken over by Japan. Statements have been made to the effect that American trade would be shut out wherever the Japanese flag has been hoisted. Scrutiny of our exports to China and Japan does not bear out this supposition. In most of the leading items we sell to Japan the same things we sell to China. This means that Japan is not economically prepared to supply these in Manchukuo - at least not without first buying them from the United States for re-export by her own dealers. We sell petroleum products, machinery, tobacco, and cotton in considerable volume to China, for example. Japan is not in a position to meet this demand adequately from her own resources. In several fields, such as the market for electrical goods, small hardware and novelties, we may expect the Japanese to oust American competition. But Japan was steadily winning by price cutting the Chinese market for these articles for several years prior to 1931. Upon the whole, we may reasonably believe that losses sustained by our trade in certain lines will be compensated by gains accruing with the increased demands in other lines that will follow Japanese development of the area. In the trade sense, the Chinese themselves have held the so-called Open Door closed for years past with their anti-foreign obstructive policy plus the chaos of anarchy prevailing over all the country except the main ocean ports and the cities along the Yangtze. And in any event, with our trade to China less than two per cent of our total world volume, that of Japanese controlled Manchukuo stands as a very small fraction indeed. The estimated population of Manchukuo is around thirty million, or less than a thirteenth the estimated population of all China.

These considerations apply directly as an answer to the American alarm that a supreme economic catastrophe to us is impending with the Japanese aggression in Asia. The primary thought of every American interested in our Far Eastern affairs is voiced in the question, "Must we be drawn into war there?"

The foregoing review of outstanding issues is intended to present the reasoning of resident Americans in the Far East, familiar with economic facts as well as racial tendencies, to the conclusion that the actual menace to us has been greatly exaggerated. Neither upon ethical grounds, in support of the Chinese, nor upon economic grounds, in defense of our trade, do they feel that we should be justified in opposing the Japanese to an extent that might invite an armed clash.

Strange to say, the menace to us in our Far Eastern relations is not in the Far East at all, but in the ill-considered actions and expressions of uninformed people in the United States. It is true, with emphasis upon this aspect, that grave danger may lie ahead. When women's clubs all over the United States can propose a boycott of Japanese goods because of events seven thousand miles away that affect none of us directly, and when editors of leading American dailies can measure their letters demanding war on Japan by the bushel, then we cannot rest assured that we are out of danger. We might do well to remember that strife in the modern world seldom occurs with the right and wrong of the affair completely on opposite sides. Persons of extended experience with the Japanese, while unani- mous in the conviction that they will fight readily, are almost equally unanimous in the conviction that the Japanese are unlikely to attack us without provocation. They would have nothing to gain and everything to lose by so doing. And to give them credit, they are much more cautious and studious of possibilities than we commonly suppose. Their government is one of the best in the world for utilizing in continuous service at the top men of fine outstanding ability. The Japanese Government has shown more careful consistency, probably, in its foreign policy during the last thirty years than the government of any other world power. This makes for reliability in the sense that in dealing with them we know where we stand, though we recognize that whoever comes and goes in the Japanese cabinet they remain sensitive, even readily combustile. We know, too, that they are likely to remain absurdly alarmed at the sight of a camera in the hands of a tourist, and ready to jump out of their kimonos at the thought of a spy. Yet none of these traits need inspire in us the notion that we are to be leaped upon and murdered in our beds, as some of our alarmists imply. The behavior of the Japanese is more the result of a fear that we shall jump upon them unawares. We are fortunate that Japanese ambitions face westward. They may collide with the Chinese again upon the Asiatic mainland, or they may clash with Russia. But neither eventuality, allowed the most moderate amount of competent leadership and intelligent public opinion in the United States, need involve us in the conflict. With Russia in the Far East we have never had much concern. With the Chinese we have displayed upon the whole too much. If any of the three or all the three want to fight, we may justly regret it, but in common prudence our emotions need not reach the heat of driving us in as a participant.

This leaves us, in conclusion, with the immediate problem of the backward Chinese as our only legitimate problem in Asia. That is a problem, but in the judgment of Americans who make their homes in China, it need not be a burdening anxiety. Our desired aim in China is nothing more than simply to hold our own.

In this aim, our maintenance of extra-territoriality is important - in fact, absolutely essential - until such a time as the Chinese show ability to render protection to American citizens by their own administration of law. Their laws are good enough as it is. They have been drafted by able foreigntrained Chinese in accordance with the best standards of Western jurisprudence. But they are good only on paper. In practice they do not operate for the Chinese themselves, not to mention the catastrophes that would befall foreigners were any reliance to be placed upon them. By extra-territoriality, in the parlance of international law, is meant the arrangement whereby one country allows the resident subjects of another country to remain subject to their own courts and laws, instead of being subject to the courts and laws of the country where they are residing. This arrangement has been found advisable in countries where the administration of the laws, or maladministration of them, is so wholly antagonistic to a more advanced sense of justice that foreigners would be exposed to numerous hardships and perils. We have extra-territorial rights for Americans in China now, because we cannot consent to our citizens being subjected to the chaotic and corrupt courts of the Chinese. For petty cases the American consuls in China act as judges and magistrates, with power to render binding legal decisions. An American citizen in China cannot be taken before a Chinese judge for any criminal offense. If he is acting in a fashion that necessitates his immediate arrest and detention, the Chinese authorities arresting him must, under the treaties, take him at once to the nearest American consul. This applies regardless of whether the American citizen arrested has committed an offense against another foreigner or against a Chinese.

In civil actions - actions for redress of wrongs not of a criminal character, or actions for compensation of any kind for damages suffered - court cases in China are tried in the court of the defendant's nationality. Thus if an American sues a Chinese, the case is heard in a Chinese court; but if a Chinese sues an American, the case is heard in an American court. This arrangement, obviously, is calculated to guard against any chances of court prejudice in behalf of a plaintiff of the same nationality of the judge presiding. In actual operation, it pretty well shuts the door of justice to American firms in China, for the reason that they consider their chances of justice before a Chinese court so slim that they prefer to take their loss in most instances rather than attempt a legal recovery where a Chinese has defrauded them. A Chinese committing an offense against an American, an offense of criminal nature, is outside the jurisdiction of the American consul, who will in such a case merely make demands upon the Chinese legal authorities to punish the offender. Where an American commits some offense of criminal nature injuring a Chinese, the American is tried by the consul or by the United States Court for China just as if the offense had been committed against another American, with the penalties to be invoked upon judgment of guilt the same.

Mr. H. G. W. Woodhead, a writer for the Shanghai Evening Post and Mercury, made a trip up the Yangtze in the summer of 1931 to see how the foreign communities were faring, and to review the results of incessant turmoil and the machinations of the rival leaders and the Kuomintang upon both the foreigners and the Chinese. His book, "The Yangtze and Its Problems," appears a fair appraisal of conditions, and a willingness is shown wherever possible to accord to the Chinese full credit for any signs of progress.

Mr. Woodhead says toward the conclusion of his narrative: "Throughout my tour I did not meet a single foreigner who considered it possible to obtain elementary justice in a Chinese tribunal. I was given numerous cases where it had been denied. And I found the general opinion among foreigners of all nationalities to be that if one were unlucky enough to have dealings with a defaulting or embezzling agent, or a merchant who made deliveries that were not up to standard, it was cheaper to bear the resultant loss than to have recourse to law."

Dr. Kuo, speaking before the Conference on Relations with China, at Johns Hopkins University, in September of 1925, said:

"We do not mean to say that our laws are perfect. They are far from that. But it is safe to say that no nation can yet boast of perfect laws. There is always room for improvement."

This is an excerpt from his speech demanding abolition of extraterritoriality. The substance is typically Chinese - making a statement so obviously true that no one could offer disagreement, and yet with no practical connection with the subject. By stating what is true in general, he has by no means set forth what is true in respect to China.

Much in this tone, an American missionary who had been evacuated from a certain port in an American warship to guard her life from a slaughtering horde of Chinese, and who had lived through years of outrages and perils among them, when heads hung thick on the bridge through the city and Chinese died by the hundred, at the whim of whoever was in power, remarked to me, defensively, "But, of course, there is injustice and abuse of rights in America, too. A person is likely to be prejudiced in favor of his own country. There is no perfection of justice anywhere in the world." Said Dr. Kuo in another speech at the same conference in Baltimore in September of 1925:

"The standard of general enlightenment in China is now considerably higher than in former days. The educated people today cherish with no less fervor than the people of the West the fundamental principles of liberty, equality, and self-determination, as well as other ideas of modern democracy....During this period China has made great progress in the reform of her judicial system and has succeeded in bringing it into accord with that of the Western nations."

At the Baltimore conference an able answer was given to Dr. Kuo's demand for the abolition of extra-territoriality by Mr. E. Stanley Glines, of Lem, Glines & Company, China. His remarks quoted here were in answer to the Chinese contention regarding the loss to China from the large number of Chinese who make their homes in the Foreign Settlements, and whose taxes are not paid in to the use of the Chinese government authorities. Said Mr. Glines:

"Some of you believe that such leased areas as Shanghai should be turned over to the Chinese and that extra-territoriality should be abolished. You point to the large amount of fixed capital investment escaping foreign taxation which you say properly belongs to the Government. You also point to the fact that within these leased areas resides a large Chinese population who have no say in the Government.

"Why are these Chinese in this area? Simply to escape the rapaciousness of their countrymen. When these Chinese, as a protest to the foreign control of these leased areas, move out of these leased areas and put themselves at the mercy of the military, then I shall believe them to be sincere. "Do you honestly believe that in the event of the Chinese being placed in a position where they can tax these foreign holdings, the money will go to the Government? There is certainly nothing in the present situation to warrant such confidence."

One of the exactions to which Americans would be increasingly exposed in China if extra-territorial protection were abolished is the demand for contributions to war loans. All over China the military leaders send their agents to men suspected of having money and demand a "voluntary subscription" to the military mogul's war chest. In return the "voluntary subscriber" is given a piece of worthless paper; called a bond, theoretically paying interest and eventually redeemable. Naturally the leader is gone within a few months, and even if he remained, no one is foolish enough to expect any payment. Persons who hesitate to subscribe in this fashion may be shot, tortured, or have their property confiscated. Chinese usually meet such demands by paying the agent half of the amount of the subscription demanded, upon private assurances that no further demands will be made. This one half is called a "gift" to the general's cause. The idea is that the donor would rather give five thousand dollars outright than buy a bond at ten thousand. Germans in China, having no extra-territorial rights, are pestered from time to time by this form of extortion. The Chinese are of course victimized all the time. This is but one of many common Chinese military rackets. The menaces to which we should be exposed if our extra-territoriality were relinquished would be sufficient, in the opinion of practically all veteran business men in China, to drive our citizens out of China except in the few foreign concessions.

There is an insistent demand among the Chinese for return of the Shanghai International Settlement and other foreign bits of territory in China. The argument is that these sites were obtained under unfair conditions long ago. In this argument, the Chinese neither offer reimbursement for the improvements that have been made nor evidence that this foreign property would be protected. In practical fact we know that it would not be protected. Research into the history of the foreign settlements further discloses that at the time they were obtained the Chinese regarded the sites as practically worthless, and considered that they had played a splendid trick upon the gullible foreigners. Now that they are covered with expensive improvements and skyscrapers, however, the Chinese are fond of computing their value and announcing the totals as "thefts" of the foreigners from them. The Chinese propaganda in this connection has been continuous, and to uninformed persons convincing. One foreign journalist, an American, is regularly employed by the Nanking regime in writing articles and books clamoring, "as an American interested in fair dealing," for the return of the concessions and abolition of extraterritoriality. His affiliation with Nanking does not appear upon the jackets of his books, though it is known as a fact by practically every foreigner in China. A few Americans honestly believed ten years or so ago that the Chinese were ready for the abolition of extraterritoriality. In recent years, however, it appears that this group has lapsed into silence.

Here a word might be said regarding the alleged foreign exploitation of the Chinese. We often hear the term, but never do we receive specific instances. As a matter of fact, American business in China has fewer privileges than it has in an advanced country. Our business men are prevented by treaty agreements from owning land outside specified ports. They pay higher wages and provide better working conditions than do native employers. Foreign business as a whole is of such slight volume in the country, compared to native business, that nothing approaching a "capitalistic grip" upon Chinese industry could be even hinted at with any remote kinship to truth. The preference of Chinese for foreign employers is evidenced in the way they stampede to obtain work under foreign management wherever there is a choice. Aside from the foreign-built railways in Manchuria, there has never been anything approaching a foreign monopoly upon any kind of Chinese business in any locality.

To all that we hear from Chinese diplomats and other Chinese spokesmen at the present time we may well add the few grains of salt provided by our knowledge of the Kuomintang anti-foreign policy, plus that derived from our knowledge of the Chinese disposition to make themselves objects of sympathy. And we may well remember the character of the Nationalist government which we recognize as sovereign.

The missionaries hailed this government as their lasting friend in 1926. Here is how the missionaries fared under this same government as soon as its first army conquered Nanking a few months later:

STATEMENT REGARDING THE Nanking OUTRAGE In order that the American public may know the facts regarding the Nanking outrage, we, the undersigned American citizens and residents of Nanking who were present when the outrages against foreign lives and property were committed in that city on March 24th, desire to make a public statement. Out of our own first hand experience and observation we unequivocably affirm that these outrages were committed by armed Nationalist soldiers in uniform who acted with the knowledge and approval of their superior officers. These outrages consisted not only in the looting of foreign homes, consular offices, schools, hospitals and places of business, but also in the burning of foreign homes and schools; in deliberate murder; in twice shooting and seriously wounding a young American woman; in shooting at and attempting to kill foreign men, women and children; in the attempted rape of American women; and in other shocking indignities to foreign women too indecent to be published. To many of such we can bear the sworn testimony of eyewitnesses; and numerous other cases have been proven beyond the least shadow of doubt. From the statements of many of the Nationalist soldiers made to us and from the testimony of Chinese friends, it is an established fact that they entered Nanking with definite license, if not instructions, to rob and kill foreigners. From the actions of the troops it was evident that their plan was to loot foreign buildings, force the occupants to disclose the location of their valuables, strip them of their clothing, and maltreat them at will. Some of us were told both by these soldiers themselves and also by Chinese friends who helped us to find places of concealment, that we should surely be killed. It is our conviction that the firing from the naval vessels prevented the murder of many foreigners who were caught in the city. It was immediately after the shelling was begun by American and British ships that bugles were sounded and the soldiers ceased their systematic work of destruction, thus demonstrating that they were under the control of higher military officers. These are all incontrovertible facts. It now seems well established, in the opinion of both Chinese and foreigners, that those responsible for these outrages are of the Communist wing of the Nationalist Government which is dominated and directed by Russian Bolshevist advisers. They are the enemies not only of foreign interests in China but also of China's truest welfare, and it is our belief that unless checked they will make impossible the realization of an orderly and unified Government. We have always been in deepest sympathy with genuine Chinese national aims, and in spite of the fearful experience through which we have passed, we maintain this sympathy. For this reason we are appalled as we think of the inevitable consequences to China and to the world, if the destructive influences which are now determining the policy of the Nationalist Government are not restrained.

(Signed) A. J. BOWEN, LL.D., Methodist Episcopal Mission, and President of Nanking University. P. F. PRICE, D.D., Southern Presbyterian Mission. DONALD W. RICHARDSON, Southern Presbyterian Mission. [330] W. R. WILLIAMS, Friends Mission. C. A. MATTI, Friends Mission. JOHN H. REISNER, Northern Presbyterian Mission. J. C. THOMSON, Northern Presbyterian Mission. C. STANLEY SMITH, Northern Presbyterian Mission. HARRY CLEMONS, Northern Presbyterian Mission. G. W. LOOS, JR., Northern Presbyterian Mission. L. J. OWEN, Treasurer of University of Nanking. EDWIN MARX, Disciples of Christ Mission. L. B. RIDGELY, D.D., American Episcopal Mission. W. P. ROBERTS, American Episcopal Mission. J. G. MAGEE, American Episcopal Mission. C. L. PICKENS, JR., American Episcopal Mission. N. D. GIFFORD, JR., American Episcopal Mission.

Various other missionary statements drawn up at the time acknowledged that while always having repudiated the use of force, they had owed their lives to its timely arrival at Nanking.

Pearl Buck and her husband escaped from that atrocity and fled to Japan. From there they wrote how good it felt to be where things were peaceful. Last year, Mrs. Buck published an article in the Yale Review in which she expressed admiration for the Chinese because, she said, when she got back to her home at Nanking after the murdering and looting, she found no bawdy scribblings on the walls. This article struck some of the foreigners in China as worth reflection. It did not seem strange to them that an army given over to wholesale raping of the native women, with murders of foreigners and wholesale looting going on, should neglect to take time out for drawing vulgar pictures. Mrs. Buck said further in her article that such cleanmindedness "would hardly have been true if Western soldiers had occupied it" [her home]. "I like the Chinese as they really are," she wrote. "The glory and the strength of the Chinese are in their humanity." She did not relate how the British Consul at Nanking was upon that occasion shot down in his own yard by jeering troops, how an American was likewise slain for no provocation, and how fifty foreigners huddled under a rain of bullets in the home of Mrs. Alice Tisdale Hobart until rescued by a landing squad which was covered by a barrage from the foreign ships.

That is the government we deal with in China now. Its degree of responsibility, and the competence of the Chinese as a whole to assume the duties of a modern state, may be judged from the considerations that have been presented. The facts may be verified, and vastly amplified, by any persons possessed of the spirit of inquiry.

Thus in looking at China, summarizing everything, we are obliged to acknowledge that traditional policies have failed in results. We have lent them money and they have misused it and defaulted. We have built schools and hospitals and they have burned them down. Our missionaries, spending their lives in self-sacrifice among them, are, by the instigation of the "educated" ones they have helped, tortured and slain. Our diplomatic support and general leniency have been seized upon as encouragement to atrocities with exemption from punishment.

The thought uppermost in the minds of Americans now is world peace. And as to our policy in the Far East toward this end, for the best interests of all, it is the view of thoughtful persons on the scene that our best course toward other powers would be to mind our own affairs, and toward the Chinese, by methods of consideration but firmness, to insist upon our elementary rights.

*****The KBH*****

KBH original Articles:

External Links:

Uncle Jeebers:
Against MGM
Porn Propaganda Debunked