893.5045/60: Telegram

The Consul General at Shanghai (Cunningham) to the Secretary of State

Summarizing events since my telegram of May 31, 2 p.m., after several hours’ deliberation on May 31, 7 p.m., general strike resolutions were passed by students and street associations to become effective June 1st and demands were made and wild resolutions passed on all conceivable questions. June 1st Chinese business houses in the International Settlement were closed in obedience to strike resolutions. [Page 649] Students have massed repeatedly on Nanking Road and twice have been repulsed by the police with casualties.

The chairman of the Chinese general Chamber of Commerce joined in some of the resolutions adopted but thereafter he assured the chairman of the Municipal Council that the chairman was not in sympathy with what had been done and that he gave his assent under compulsion. The same sentiment has been conveyed to officials during the night and it is hoped that the Chamber of Commerce is not in sympathy with the resolutions and will use its influence to restore law and order. It is believed that subsequent events have placed the Chamber of Commerce as officially supporting the above-named strike although leading members are unquestionably silently endeavoring to secure an adjustment so that normalcy may be restored.

Also on June 1st the bankers’ association after several hours’ deliberation decided to present demands to the Shanghai Municipal Council to punish police officers and demand compensation for the killed and wounded. This is regarded as most significantly serious.

June 1st chairman of the Municipal Council requested the consular body to secure naval force adequate to insure an aggregate landing party of two thousand men to guard public utilities and also to convince antistrike party of the ability of foreigners to protect those willing to continue work. The request was transmitted to the Legations by the interested consuls.

On June 1st Municipal Council proclaimed a state of emergency and the Shanghai volunteer corps was fully mobilized.

Second telegram will follow.