Thursday, August 31, 2006

Cheng Man-ch'ing: New Method, Ku Wei-chun's Introduction

Wellington Ku, 1921
Photographed in his Chinese Diplomatic Uniform of navy blue cloth, embroidered with corn sheaves in gold with gilt buttons, engraved with the letters RC (Republique Chinoise) in the centre, surrounded by the Chinese motif symbolizing five blessings.Star and sash of The Precious Brilliant Golden Grain (Republic of China); Star of The Golden Grain (Republic of China); Star of The Order of George I (Greece).

The first Introduction that appears in Cheng Man-ch'ing New Method is by Ku Wei-chun, known in the West as Wellington Ku.

Wellington Koo 顧 維鈞 (1887-1985) is best remembered today as a Kuomingtang Chinese diplomat and a representative to the Paris Peace Conference of 1919.
Born in Shanghai, China, he travelled to the United States in 1904 to study Western culture.Koo returned to China to attend Saint John’s University in Shanghai, and then went on to study at Columbia College. Where, in 1912 he received his PhD in international law and diplomacy. He returned to China to serve as the President's English Secretary. In 1915 Koo was made Chinese Minister to the United States.
In 1919 he was one of the Chinese delegates to the Paris Peace Conference. The Chinese delegation at the Paris Peace Conference was the only nation that did not sign the Treaty of Versailles, demanding that Japan return Shandong to China. He continually engaged Western countries to end all imperialist institutions such as extraterritoriality, tariff controls, legation guards, and lease holds.

Koo also was involved in the formation of the League of Nations as China's first representative to that body. He was acting president of China from 1926-1927 during a period of chaos in Beijing. He later served as Foreign Minister under Zhang Zuolin, and represented China at the League of Nations to protest the Japanese invasion of Manchuria. He served as the Chinese Ambassador to France from 1936-1940 until France was occupied by Germany. Afterwards he was the Chinese Ambassador to the United Kingdom until 1946. In 1945 Koo was one of the founding members of the United Nations. Afterwards he was the Ambassador to the United States trying to maintain the alliance between the Republic of China and the United States as the Kuomintang began losing to the Chinese Communists and had to retreat to Taiwan.

Ku in later years, wearing a fine wing-tip collar white shirt and black judicial robes posing in front of what apears to be a transparent window (unknown construction)

Koo retired from the Chinese diplomatic service in 1956 after 44 years and two world wars. He was China's most experienced and respected diplomat. In 1956 Koo became the Vice-president and judge in the International Court of Justice at The Hague. In 1967 he retired and moved to New York City where he spent the rest of his life with family and friends until his death in 1985 at the age of 98.


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