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Professional ability in the U. S. diplomatic service won, last week, another victory: the President decided to appoint John Van Antwerp MacMurray to be Minister to China.* Chinese bands, long silent, are beginning to play the tunes of nationalism; the new minister must have a delicate ear, must be a sympathetic critic. Two tunes, in particular, are rising to a crescendo of protest against “foreign domination.”

Extraterritorial rights. During the 19th Century, a series of treaties exempted nearly all non-Chinese residents in China from the control of Chinese law courts. Accused foreigners have their cases tried either in special international courts or in their local consulates. This was made necessary by the malconformation of Chinese law as compared with the beauty of Roman and Teutonic law, regarded by white men as their inalienable inheritance. Nationalistic China now resents the concession of extra-territorality, demands the abrogation of the treaties. The most important speech of U. S. Minister Schurman – recently promoted to be Ambassador at Berlin (TIME, Mar. 30)-was made two months ago on this subject. He tactfully suggested gradual changes.

Maritime Customs. Most of the import duties of China are collected and administered by foreigners, chiefly British. Since these revenues are needed to pay the interest on China’s foreign loans, it was thought unwise to abandon them to the graft-ridden officialdom of the old Em- pire. Pseudo-Republican China resents this stricture on its sover- eignty.

Probably no man understands these and other delicate matters better than Mr. MacMurray. Since graduation from Princeton, he has filled diplomatic posts in Siam, Russia, China, Japan. In 1919, he became Chief of the Far Eastern Division of the State Department, last year was elevated to an assistant Secretaryship of State. As soon as Minister Schurman accepted the Berlin post, Mr. MacMurray was put forward as the ideal candidate for Peking. Would politics interfere? Could Senator Curtis persuade the President to appoint his fellow-Kan- san, William S. Culbertson? Could some other Senator win the post for some one else? In a word, no.

Mr. MacMurray was succeeded as Assistant Secretary of State by Hugh R. Wilson, a diplomatic servant since 1911.

— Other men elevated in the service for merit: Henry Prather Fletcher, Ambassador at Rome, has served in the diplomatic corps since 1902; William Phillips, Ambassador to Belgium, in the service since 1905; Hugh Gibson, Minister to Switzerland, in the service since 1908; Peter Augustus Jay, Ambassador to Argentina, in the service since 1902,

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