Page images

item of interest to the members of the American Society of International Law, of which Mr. Moore was one of the founders, and to the readers of the JOURNAL, of which Mr. Moore is an editor, and a source of congratulation to the public at large, both at home and abroad, as he is without question not only the very head and front of American publicists, but one of the most distinguished authorities and writers on international law in this large and important field of human knowledge.

Professor Moore is qualified for this, or indeed for any, position in the Department of State, both by practical experience and by theoretical study. Born in Delaware in 1860, he entered the Department of State in 1885, was Third Assistant Secretary of State from 1886 to 1891, and Assistant Secretary of State during the trying period of the war with Spain, from April to September, 1898, and was secretary and counsel of the Spanish-American Peace Commission at Paris in 1898. He was secretary to the Fisheries Conference, 1887-1888, and to the Conference on Samoan affairs in 1887. He was agent of the United States before the United States and Dominican arbitral tribunal in 1904, delegate of the United States to the Fourth International American Conference at Buenos Aires in 1910, delegate of the United States to the Congress of Jurists for the codification of international law, held at Rio de Janeiro in July, 1912, and was recently appointed member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague.

His theoretical qualifications for the position are evidenced by the fact that he has been professor of international law and diplomacy at Columbia University from 1891, when he resigned the position of Third Assistant Secretary of State to accept this chair, which he still holds, and by a long list of contributions to those phases of international law in which he is particularly interested. Of a technical nature may be mentioned his Report on Extra-territorial Crime (1887), his Report on Extradition (1890), his Treatise on Extradition and Interstate Rendition, 2 volumes (1891), and the American Notes to Dicey's Treatise on the Conflict of Laws (1896). His elaborate History and Digest of International Arbitrations, 6 volumes (1898), is the standard work on this subject which has hitherto appeared in English and will be only replaced by a more elaborate work on all known instances of arbitration, which he has undertaken to prepare for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. His monumental Digest of International Law, 8 volumes (1906) is, like his History and Digest of International Arbitrations, an official publication of the government. It is the only work of its kind, is a

storehouse of information and precedent, and, notwithstanding its title "Digest," it is in reality an elaborate and authoritative treatise on international law.

Professor Moore has from time to time delivered valuable addresses which have appeared in pamphlet form, and has published two works of modest proportions which appeal to the general reader: American Diplomacy, its Spirit and Achievements (1905) and Four Phases of American Development (1912).

In addition to this imposing list of publications, Professor Moore has edited the works of James Buchanan, 12 volumes (1908). Professor Moore's various contributions to international law cannot be too highly praised. As Professor Nys, the distinguished Belgian publicist, has himself said: "On ne saurait dire trop de bien de toutes les œuvres du savant jurisconsulte."

President Wilson and Secretary Bryan are to be congratulated for persuading him to quit his professorship at Columbia to assume the duties of Counselor in the Department of State, for his mere presence in the Department will be a guarantee that the best traditions of the United States are to govern our international relations, and that the newer problems as they arise will be decided according to precedent and in a way to enhance the international prestige of the United States, of which we are justly so proud.


The last two numbers of this JOURNAL contained articles on the International Opium Conference held at The Hague during the winter of 1911-12. The first article outlined the actions which had been taken since the adjournment of the International Opium Commission by the several governments party to that commission to put into force effective national laws for the suppression of the abuses connected with the overproduction and traffic in opium; while the second article was descriptive of the International Opium Conference and analytical of the convention signed by the delegates thereto.

The international movement for the suppression of the opium traffic initiated by the United States in the interest of China has developed from a consultation with four or five of the larger western Powers having territorial relations with that country to a movement which now em

braces the entire civilized world. During this development the original object sought by the United States- namely, to assist China to bring her opium evil to an end- has grown somewhat obscure to the public mind. It should be recalled, therefore, that in the spring of 1908, when the executive called the attention of the Congress to the diplomatic action of the United States Government to bring about conjoint action for the suppression of the opium evil, it was stated that the action thus inaugurated was in conformity with the established policy of our government, expressed in the treaty with China concluded November 17, 1880, by which the Governments of China and the United States mutually agreed that "Citizens of the United States shall not be permitted to import opium into any of the open ports of China, to transport it from one open port to any other open port, or to buy and sell opium in any of the open ports of China"; and that this treaty was followed by the Act of Congress of February 23, 1887, prohibiting citizens of the United States from engaging in the opium trade with China under heavy penalties.

The diplomatic intervention of the United States for the suppression of the Far Eastern opium traffic was based on a consistent policy which had been followed from the earliest contact of its citizens with Far Eastern countries. The United States was almost alone in agreement with those countries that the opium traffic should be suppressed. The attitude of this government, however, had little effect except to restrain American citizens, for up to 1906 the opium evil in China had grown to an enormous extent. This may be best illustrated by quoting from a high authority:

I shall not yield to the temptation to describe the effects of opium in China. The leaders of the Chinese people look upon it as a dangerous fee to our very existence as a nation. Every instinct of self-preservation cries out against it. The past few years have brought some strange and notable apologists for opium some strange and notable apologists for China as an opium-using country. Would that we Chinese, who are best in position to know the facts, could follow them with conviction! Would that we could dispel the sternness of the facts with this softness of speech!

But go with me, gentlemen of this Commission, over that broad and once fair stretch of Western China, where the ravages of the curse have been most evident — the provinces of Szechwan, Yünnan, Kweichow, Kansu, and Shensi - an area comprising a large proportion of the eighteen provinces. Visit the dismal and wretched hovels, which, were it not for opium, would be happy homes; see the emaciated, depraved multitude of victims to this vice; observe the abject poverty - and notice for the cause of it all the wide fields once covered with waving gold of ripening grain now given over to the cultivation of the poppy. Read what Lieutenant-Colonel

Bruce says on Kansu: "One blot, and that no small one, lies on the people of Western Kansu. It is that men and women are, to a fearful extent, habitual and confirmed smokers." Monseigneur Otto, Catholic Bishop of Kansu, who has spent thirty years of his life in China, reckons six men out of every eight of the population as confirmed in the habit.

The economic burden imposed upon China by the use of opium has now become almost unbearable. As is shown in our report, a conservative estimate of the annual production of native opium for 1906 is 584,800 piculs; this we may value at Tls. 220,000,000. To this must be added for imported opium Tls. 30,000,000, taking the value of the importation for 1905; this gives us a total expenditure in cash on the part of the Chinese for opium of Tls. 250,000,000. The land now given over to the production of opium, were it planted with wheat or other more useful crops, would yield an annual return of, let us say, at least Tls. 150,000,000. This sum, added to the loss of Tls. 250,000,000 mentioned above, means that the cultivation of opium costs the nation Tls. 400,000,000 a year. To estimate the loss to the country in the earning capacity of the victims of the opium habit is more difficult. Our investigations have convinced us that there are 25 million men in China addicted to the use of opium. This number, unfortunately, includes many from among the more highly productive classes; but if we suppose their average earning capacity, were they not addicted to the habit of opium, to be one-fifth a tael a day, and that this is reduced one-quarter by their use of opium, we have here a daily loss to the nation of Tls. 1,250,000, or an annual loss of Tls. 456,250,000. If there is added to this the items which I have mentioned above, we have a total annual loss to China of Tls. 856,250,000. It is needless for me to call your attention to how ill-prepared we are as a people at the present stage of our industrial development to bear such a burden as this. No account is here taken of the capital loss involved.

This economic loss affects not only China but all of the leading nations of the world. We live in the era of improved transportation, which means an era of increased foreign trade. Within the past 28 years the world's foreign trade has grown from Gold $2 1-2 per capita to Gold $14. While China's trade has been backward, she has not failed to feel the impulse of this world movement. In 1867 when the Chinese customs statistics assumed their present shape and furnished the first data for comparison with the present, the value of China's imports was less than 69 1-3 million taels; in 1905 it was over 447,000,000 taels, an increase of more than sixfold; and yet the foreign trade of China is still lamentably small. The imports of China per capita are about 2s. 5d., while those of Japan are 15s. 10d.—nearly seven times as much, and of the United States about 30 times as much per capita. There is no part of the world in which there is a field for such an enormous extension of foreign trade as is presented to-day in China. In fact, who can estimate the influence upon the trade of the world when China comes to her own commercially and industrially? If the world sold to each Chinese as much as it does to each Japanese, it would receive 3 billion taels annually from China.

The facts just stated are no exaggeration. The opium evil had not only permeated the hovel, but every government yamen in China, and the representatives of foreign governments continually found it difficult

to come to an agreement with Chinese officials on economic, social and diplomatic questions, or, where such agreements were arrived at on these questions, to secure their fulfillment. Dislike of the foreigner was almost universal, largely because of the "black poison" which the average Chinaman felt had been forced upon his country from outside sources. This outstanding difference between China and the western world is about to be obliterated. In a word, the Indo-Chinese opium traffic is at an end. To-day, China, encouraged by the diplomatic intervention of the United States and as a result of agreements made with the British Government, is at least seventy-five per cent free of her opium evil. The present situation is as follows:

As the result of the Chinese interpretation of the terms of the agreement between China and Great Britain of May 8, 1911, China has practically forbidden the importation of Indian opium, all the governors of the provinces having instituted such regulations in regard to the retail trade in the drug that the market for Indian as well as native opium is practically closed. It has resulted that some seventy million dollars worth of Indian opium is now in storage at Hongkong and Shanghai, on which the various foreign banks have advanced about fifty million dollars. Storage and insurance charges are heaping up. Therefore, the Indo-Chinese opium traffic has arrived at the critical point where it must be discontinued and the stocks of opium cleared off by some method. The first step to this end was the suspension by the Indian Government of all sales of opium for the China market, and the cutting down by one-third of the sales of opium to other Far Eastern countries, including the British Crown Colonies. There remains only the question of the disposition of the opium stocks at Shanghai and Hongkong. The difficulty in regard to this matter may be realized when it is understood that the International Opium Convention signed at The Hague last year practically closes the doors of every nation in the world to this low-grade opium. The opium merchants and bankers are threatened by ruin. The banks have made several efforts to open the China market to this opium by indirect pressure on Peking. These efforts have not been successful, and the American Government, in view of its treaty relations with China and its diplomatic position in regard to the opium trade, has instructed its diplomatic and consular officers in China to have nothing to do with the attempt of the bankers. Serious proposals are now being made that the Indian Government, which during the last five years has received a windfall of nearly seventy-five million

« PreviousContinue »