The Minister in China (MacMurray) to the Consul General at Tientsin (Gauss)42

Sir: I beg leave to acknowledge the receipt of your despatch of May 3, 1928,43 concerning protection for the Pao Cheng Cotton Mill at Tientsin. In the third paragraph of the despatch under acknowledgment you quote a letter received from Messrs. Andersen Meyer and Company, Limited, with reference to the financial situation of this mill, in which the following appears:

“Under present conditions, with practically all of the godowns in Tientsin occupied by foreign troops, it is almost an impossibility for us to bring the yarn, cotton and supplies into the concession for storage.”

As you point out in the despatch under acknowledgment, it has been emphasized that the various American forces in China have been sent here for the protection of American life; and our Government’s policy is that its forces are to be employed for the protection of property only in so far as such protection may be incident to the carrying out of their primary mission. It would therefore not be appropriate to request the American forces at Tientsin to extend protection to this property if, as is understood, its protection would have no relation to the protection of lives.

I am [etc.]

J. V. A. MacMurray
  1. Copy transmitted, without covering despatch, to the Department by the Minister in China; received June 27.
  2. Not printed.