The Minister in China (MacMurray) to the Secretary of State

No. 1511

Sir: In my radiogram No. 330, of May 10, 1 a.m., I had the honor to forward a translation of a circular telegram to the country at large from Generalissimo Chang Tso-lin adroitly appealing for peace and indicating that the main object of the Peking regime in engaging in hostilities was the extermination of bolshevism.

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I now have the honor to enclose, for the information of the Department, a copy of a confidential letter addressed to me on May 12, 1928, by Mr. Telly Koo, of the Peking Ministry of Foreign Affairs,43 in which my mediation is requested in the endeavor to persuade the Southern authorities to respond to the appeal of the Generalissimo. There is likewise enclosed a copy of the Legation’s reply indicating my inability to act upon this request.

Mr. Koo, who is a translator attached to the staff of the Generalissimo as well as to the Foreign Office, sent a similar communication to the Senior (Netherlands) Minister and to the British Minister, and took the matter up orally with the Japanese Minister, in each case giving the impression that each of the foreign representatives concerned was being approached first. Treating the matter as not being serious (as it obviously is not), my Netherlands colleague made no reply. The British reply, which was signed by the Second Secretary of the Legation, was of the same tenor as the one I caused to be made.

I have [etc.]

J. V. A. MacMurray

The American Second Secretary of Legation (Chapman) to a Secretary of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Telly Koo)

My Dear Mr. Koo: The Minister directs me to acknowledge to you the personal letter of May 12th in which you confidentially conveyed in behalf of Vice-Minister Ou Tsing an expression of the hope that it might be possible for the American Minister to get the South to respond to the Generalissimo’s appeal for peace.

Mr. MacMurray appreciates the confidence implied in this suggestion, and is happy to feel that Mr. Ou is aware, as your letter states, of the delicacy of the position of a diplomatic representative charged with the responsibility for his national interests during a period of civil conflict in the country to which he is accredited.

He therefore feels sure that Mr. Ou will understand that, warmly as the Minister (in common with other friends of China) would welcome the termination of such conflicts, he could not well espouse under the circumstances the particular proposals to that end offered by one of the parties involved, without at least the appearance of partisanship.

Yours sincerely,

F. J. Chapman, III.
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