28 AUGUST 1875, Page 1


THERE may be serious danger ahead in China. It is stated in a telegram from China to Bombay that Mr. Wade's endeavours to obtain an inquiry into the murder of Mr. Margary have been thwarted in a manner so insolent, that he has telegraphed home to advise the despatch of troops to protect Europeans ; and according to a Reuter's telegram from Shanghai, the European squadrons are concentrating at Chefoo ; while a correspondent of the Manchester Guardian, often well-informed, asserts that Mr. Wade has been treated in a manner which induces him to believe an attack on Englishmen not impossible. It should be remem- bered that the Chinese are very well content with the Burmese King, who has acknowledged his vassalage, that the party in power at Pekin is supposed to be supported by Li, of all Chinese states- men the most hostile to foreigners, and that China has for months past been arming herself. It is quite possible that the war party has gained an ascendancy, and quite in accordance with Chinese tactics to begin war with massacre. The fleets can, we imagine, protect the ports, and Lord Northbrook could have ten thousand men afloat in a fortnight ; but the next Chinese war will be a serious business, the Chinese having greatly improved their artillery. If it comes, it ought not to end without the acquisition of a place, preferentially Formosa, whence we can act in safety against the coast, or without a close alliance with Japan. Ten thousand Europeans and thirty thousand Japanese ought to be able to secure their own terms at Pekin.