Biography in English

Wu Ch'ao-shu (23 May 1887-2 January 1934), known as C. C. Wu, Western-educated official at Peking who went to Canton in 1917 with his father, Wu T'ing-fang, to join the Canton regime of Sun Yat-sen. He later served as minister of foreign affairs at Canton and Nanking. In 1928-30 he was minister to the United States, and in 1929-30 he also represented China at the League of Nations. The only son of Wu T'ing-fang (q.v.), C. C. Wu was born in Tientsin, where his father was serving as director of the China Railway Company. He received his early education in the Chinese classics at Tientsin. In 1897 he went to the United States with his father, who had been appointed Chinese minister to the United States, Spain, and Peru. The young Wu studied at the Force School, the Western High School, and the Atlantic City High School. Upon graduation from the last-named institution in 1904, he returned to China and became a secretary in the Kwangtung provincial board of works at Canton. In 1907 he served as a minor official in the Kwangtung board of agriculture, industry, and commerce. He continued to study throughout this period, and in 1908 he went to England, where he entered the law department of the University of London. He held Inns of Court Students and University scholarships, and he was graduated at the head of his class in 1911.

G. G. Wu returned to China in May 1911. At the time of the republican revolution, he became commissioner for foreign affairs in the Hupeh provincial government. He held that post until September 1912, when he went to Peking as chairman of the foreign ministry's treaty commission. In 1913 he was elected to the National Assembly. After Yuan Shih-k'ai dissolved the Parliament in January 1914, Wu became a member of the Constitutional Conference and of its constitution drafting committee. In May, he was named to the newly created council of state [cheng-shih t'ang], headed by Hsu Shih-ch'ang (q.v.). He also served as chairman of the treaty revision committee. When Wu became aware of Yuan Shih-k'ai's plans to became monarch, he resigned from his posts. Yuan granted Wu three months' leave but insisted that he remain in Peking. Wu thus lived in seclusion in Peking until Yuan's death in June 1916. After Tuan Gh'i-jui (q.v.) became premier at Peking, Wu served as a councillor in the cabinet and as counselor to the ministry of foreign affairs, serving under his father. In the wake of the disagreement between Tuan and Li Yuan-hung (q.v.) and the restoration attempt of Chang Hsün (q.v.), Wu and his father left Peking for Canton and the so-called constitution protection movement of Sun Yat-sen.

When Wu T'ing-fang became a director and foreign minister of the reorganized government at Canton in 1918, C. C. Wu was appointed vice minister of foreign affairs and chief of the general affairs department of the administrative council. Late in 1918 C. C. Wu was made head of the southern section of China's delegation to the Paris Peace Conference. Upon his return to China in mid-1919 he resumed office at Canton even though the government then was in the hands of the Kwangsi militarists. He retained the vice ministership of foreign affairs after Sun Yat-sen regained power at Canton. In 1922 Sun sent him to Mukden for negotiations with Chang Tso-lin (q.v.). At the time of the June 1922 coup at Canton by supporters of Ch'en Chiung-ming, Wu's father died. Wu accompanied Sun Yat-sen to Shanghai and returned with him to Canton after Ch'en was ousted in 1923. He became minster of foreign affairs in Sun's government that March. At the First National Congress of the Kuomintang, held at Canton in January 1924, C. C. Wu was elected to the Central Political Council. Soon afterwards, he became secretary general of the council and head of the merchants department in the Kuomintang central headquarters. He succeeded Sun Fo (q.v.) as mayor of Canton later that year. In October 1924 there occurred at Canton a clash with the Canton Merchants Corps. Conservative British interests in Shameen and Hong Kong were involved in the affair, and although it was brought to a successful conclusion by the Canton government's use of force, it was damaging to the position of C. C. Wu. Sun Yat-sen thought that Wu had played too feeble a role as foreign minister and mayor, and Wu's influence began to be eclipsed by that of the more radical Eugene Ch'en (q.v.), Sun's foreign affairs adviser.

In the general strike and anti-British boycott that hit Hong Kong and Canton after the May Thirtieth Incident of 1925, C. C. Wu again showed himself to be a moderate in his dealings with British and French officials. When the National Government was established at Canton in July 1925, Hu Han-min (q.v.), not Wu, received the post of foreign minister. Wu, however, became a member of the Military Council and chairman of the judicial committee. He also retained office as mayor of Canton. When Hu Han-min resigned from office after the assassination of Liao Chung-k'ai (q.v.), Wu succeeded him as foreign minister in September. In January 1926 Wu was elected to the Central Executive Committee. That spring, he reportedly became involved in activities directed against the leftist-oriented Canton regime, and he was relieved of his government posts in May.

After the first stage of the Northern Expedition and the transfer of the National Government to Wuhan, Chiang Kai-shek established an opposition government at Nanking in April 1 927. The following month, Wu became foreign minister in Chiang's government. With the end of the Kuomintang-Communist alliance and the retirement of Chiang Kai-shek in August, Wu became one of the intermediaries in the effort to reunite the Wuhan, Nanking, and Shanghai factions of the Kuomintang. He retained the foreign ministership when a reorganized National Government was established at Nanking in September. He resigned at the end of December, saying that he did so because he was unable to accomplish anything in a government which could not "compel enforcement of orders within and without." In January 1928 G. G Wu accompanied Hu Han-min and Sun Fo to Europe for the purpose of making political and economic studies. The party stopped at Singapore for receptions given by the local Chinese community. On his way to a reception on 8 February, Wu was the object of an assassination attempt, but he escaped death. It later became evident that the would-be assassins had mistaken Wu for Hu Han-min, who had not gone to that reception. By the time of the Tsinan incident in May 1928 (see Ho Yao-tsu), Wu had reached Paris. Huang Fu (q.v.), then minister of foreign affairs, asked that he go immediately to the United States to seek American mediation if need be and perhaps also to take up the matter of treaty revision.

C. G. Wu reached Washington in late May 1928. Upon arrival, he stated that "the only way to bring the belligerent factions in China together would be for the whole country to accept the Nationalist principles." However, Wu occupied an anomalous position in undertaking his new mission: Peking's incumbent, Sao-ke Alfred Sze (Shih Chao-chi, q.v.) still held the post of Chinese minister to the United States. Wu opened a separate office and established contact with the Department of State, but he was received only in Sze's company. After the Peking government was overthrown in June, Sze continued to serve as minister, and Wu's representations regarding treaty revision continued to be ineffectual. It was Sze who negotiated the new Sino-American treaty of July 1928.

In November 1928 C. C. Wu finally succeeded Sao-ke Alfred Sze as Chinese minister to the United States. He retained that post until 1931 and performed a number of other duties during that period. In February 1929 he acted as Chinese plenipotentiary in negotiations for a new Sino-Turkish treaty of friendship. That September, he represented China at the League of Nations Assembly in Geneva, where he was elected a vice president. With reference to China's plea for the abolition of unequal treaties, he strongly argued the case for applicability of the doctrine of rebus sic stantibus. In March 1930, he attended the Hague Conference for Codification of International Law as China's representative. He argued that China would not be held accountable for damages within its territory to the property or persons of foreigners beyond equality of treatment with Chinese citizens. In June 1930 he negotiated a treaty of arbitration with the United States. That September, he again represented China in the League Assembly.

The illegal arrest of Hu Han-min (q.v.) in March 1931 led to the formation of an opposition government at Canton in May. When the National Government instructed C. G Wu to request arms from the United States for use against the dissidents, he resigned, saying that "I am a Cantonese." He returned to China and joined the Canton government as head of its judicial department and chief justice of its supreme court. After the Japanese attack at Mukden in September and the subsequent release of Hu Han-min at Nanking had paved the way for a reconciliation between the two Kuomintang factions, Wu went to Shanghai as one of the Canton regime's delegates to the peace talks. Agreement was reached on the basis of Chiang Kai-shek's temporary retirement from office and a redistribution of power at Nanking. Wu was appointed president of the Judicial Yuan and a member of the State Council, but he resigned in May 1932 without having assumed the duties of these offices. He then became governor of Kwangtung and Hainan reclamation commissioner. He soon resigned from these posts because of a clash between Ch'en Chi-t'ang (q.v.) and Admiral Chan Chak (Ch'en Tse).

G G. Wu embarked on a tour of China in mid- 1932. In the autumn of 1933 Sun Fo, then president of the Legislative Yuan, invited Wu to serve as an adviser to the constitutional drafting committee. Although Wu refused the post, he took the opportunity to stress again that it was important for China to incorporate the principle of habeas corpus into its judicial system. On 2 January 1934 G C. Wu died suddenly at his Hong Kong residence of a cerebral hemorrhage, at the age of 46. He was survived by his wife, three sons, and five daughters. He was eulogized by a former associate as "a scholar, a writer of English prose, a first-class diplomat who understood revolutionary diplomacy but was prevented by political turmoil from fulfilling his mission to the Chinese people.

Biography in Chinese

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