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THE CHINA LEAGUE. The China League, an association recently formed under the chairmanship of Mr. R. A. Yerburgh, M.P., and comprising in its organising committee several members of Parliament, the presidents of the Liverpool, Leeds, Halifax, and Blackburn Chambers of Commerce, and other gentlemen of authority in Chinese affairs, is cir- culating the following manifesto — The indifference, not to say apathy, shewn by the House of Commons as a whole, in regard to the Far Eastern question and to the vital issues now pending at Pekin may be considered as re- flecting the general attitude of the electorate of Great Britain. Under these circumstances, the China League desires to place those issues before the British public briefly, in a form which may serve to indicate and emphasise their importance. 1. Any and every increase in the population of Great Britain must depend for its very existence upon the maintenance and development of the country's manufactures and its export and carry- ing trade. Under existing conditions the pros- perity of the nation is absolutely dependent on that of its foreign trade in the future this de- pendence must be accentuated in direct propor- tion with the increased population. 2. It is to the East, to the vast territories of China, where a third of the human race now lives under conditions of restricted development, that we must look for the most important expansion of commerce. The China of to-day, commercially- speaking. lies fallow; its possibilities are almost unrealised, its potential wealth immense. It should, therefore, be the first aim and object of the British Government and people to preserve intact our trading rights throughout the length and breadth of Chinese territory. It is then obvious that the interests of China and of phe British Empire alike imperatively demand the preservation of the territorial integrity of fhe Chinese Empire and of the open door" for trade. 3. Looked at from this standpoint the loss of the three Manchurian provinces is a matter of vital importance to the future trade of Great Britain. Beside this loss the advantages accruing to the Empire from the success of our arms in South Africa sink into insignificance. Manchuria, absorbed by Russia, as there seems every likeli- hood will be the case, must inevitably become closed to our commerce. The British people wit- nesses its annexation with indifference; nor are there any signs of awakening interest or activity to safeguard our present and future position and to maintain our treaty rights. 4. At a time when the future of China nangs in the balance, when the maintenance of our posi- tion and trade in that Empire (that is to say, the welfare of Great Britain in years to come) de- pends on the immediate policy of her Majesty's Government and the action of the British repre- sentative in the Concert of the Powers at Pekin at such a time the Imperial Parliament, its atten- tion apparently concentrated on personal explana- tions of unimportant matters, enunciates no policy on the Far Eastern question statesmen on both sides of the House, and publicists of all shades of opinion, remain silent in regard to the crisis, offering no solution calculated to protect British interests. A debate on the China question attracts less attention than a minor question of parochial government. 5. That this is so is obviously due to the foot that the country and its legislators have failed to realise the vast issues at stake. It is for the- people of Great Britain justly to appreciate the value, present and future, of our trade with China and the importance of preserving in their integrity our political and commercial interests from Kirin to Canton, from Shanghai to the borders of Tibet. When the nation realises these things, legis- lators must perforce interest themselves in the Far Eastern question.