From the beginning, Mongol feudal princess opposed Empress Zixi’s new program, the “New Administration Policy”. Although Mongolia had rid itself from more than two hundred years of subjugation and taxes levied by the Qing, the policies did affect the princes rights and privileges. In addition, the law banning the resettlement of Chinese subject in Mongolia was not only abolished, but the Chinese vigorously resettled Mongolia with the objective of tilling the pastoral lands.
The “New administration Policy” Takes Hold
With the New Government Policy, Chinese nationals flooded into Mongolia in an organized manner and tilled sixty to seventy thousand desyatins of lands. (A Russian desyatin or “tenth” was equal to 2.7 acres). According to the explorer Isayev, the land was taken away from the Mongolians at that time for forming reached 4,905,000 desyatins, and the number of immigrants reached 350,000. Most of the settlers made their homes near the source of the Hoh River, while some moved further north, settling in the fertile lands of the Orhon and Selenge River basins.
With the increase in the number of Chinese, business dealings became exploitative. The Chinese Da Xin Hu company alone, in repayment for the loans it had made, took from the Mongols 70,000 horses and 500,000 sheep every year, which were driven into China. The debt of every banner amounted to an average of 100,000 lan of shiver, which averaged 540 lan of silver for each household in the banner (one lan of silver or Chinese tael was 30 grams). At this time, the ebt owed by the banners of Outer Mongolia to Chinese firms amounted to approximately eleven million lan of silver, and the population of Mongolia was less than 700,000.
Because they strongly opposed the New Administration Policy, Mongols became much more organized.
In the winter of 1910 Sanduo has appointed the Manchu amban (governor) in Huree. Born in 1876 of Mongolia origin, Sanduo had been educated in China. Before coming to Mongolia, he had worked as the Deputy Lieutenant Governor in Hohhot, in Inner Mongolia. He was highly educated and had broad interests, including archeology. He was, however, tactless in interpersonal relations. Immediately after arriving in Huree, he increased the taxes due to him and even conscripted monks to the military to suppress the rebellion. Not long after his arrival, a serious conflict flared up between the Chinese traders and Mongolian lamas. Sanduo himself tried to intervene and restore order but a mob of several hundred lamas stoned him and drove him away. This strained relations with the heads of the Ih Shav (which oversaw the lamas), who sued and urged Sanduo to resign. The Bogd Javzandamba sent a request to the Qing ruler passed a decree in November 1910 removing Shanzav Badamdorj from office and promoting Sanduo to the post of Viceroy. The rift between the Mongolians and the Chinese became wider, further aggravating the hostility between the Beijing envoys and the Halh nobles.
The Mongols, irritated by the New Administration Policy, looked primarily to Huree, and specifically to the Bogd Javzandamba. Harchin Van Haisan and Almas-Ochir from Inner Mongolia had undertaken a secret mission to Huree and had returned home in 1898 after consulting with the Halhs about reviving Mongolia’s independence. When Count Haisan came to Huree, he also met and befriended Da Lama Tserenchimid. Tserenchimid who came from a lay family was well-educated and was promoted, not as a lama but for his educational background, to become one of the key ministers in the Ih Shav. Handdorj and Tserendorj drew closer to the Bogd Javzandamba and began to look for ways to bring about Mongolia’s independence. Handdorj was summoned to Huree by the Bogd in 1910, and there he settled down. The widespread discontent with the New Administration Policy and the weakened status of the Qing Dynasty strengthen the hand of the pro-independence fighters.
Aid From the Russians
Soon after, the Javzandamba Hutagt passed a decree in which he proclaimed his opposition to the New Administration. In the summer of 1911, therefore, under the pretext of giving offerings to the Bogd, the Halh nobles converged on Huree for their secret meeting. They met in the forests of the Niiht pass in the Bogd mountains, where they devised a plan of seeking aid from Russia and overthrowing the Manchu Qing rule. The Javzandamba Hutagt was their moral leader, and the Russian Consul General in Huree, Miller, was their secret supporter. They appointed a delegation to go to Russia for assistance. The Bogd approved the delegation and Miller granted permission for the delegation to cross the Mongolian-Russian border. Carrying a letter addressed by the Bogd to the Russian Tsar, Handdorj, Tserenchimid, and Haisan secretly left Huree one by one on July 29, 1911, and arrived together in St.Petersburg on August 15.
At this time, the father of twentieth-century Russian reform, P.Stolypin, was the Russian Prime Minister. He met with the Mongol delegation the day after their arrival and they presented to him a clear proposal suggesting that Russia render assistance in reviving Mongolia’s independence and so sign a treaty recognizing this independence. Not wanting to alienate China, the Russians could not grant this request.
But the Russian government called a special conference on August 17, 1911. The Russians decided to “step forward as a mediator and, through diplomacy, support the aspiration of the Mongols to preserve their suzerain, the Emperor of the Da Qing Dynasty. “Russia was not interested in seeing Mongolia become independent, but on the other hand, Russia still lacked the necessary support of the local nobles and princes in Russia to make Mongolia a sphere of its own special interest. When Russia realized that the most conservative Mongol nobles were extremely unhappy with the Qing Dynasty’s New Administration Policy, Russia promised to persuade Beijing to revoke it. Russia indeed passed the message to the Beijing leaders, who replied that “these measures were designed to promote the cultural and economic development of Mongolia and they had neither political implications not were they directed against Russian interests”. Although the Mongols were unhappy with the New Administration, their ultimate goal was to revive their independence.
Beijing Makes a Deal
Meanwhile, news of the secret departure of the Mongol nobles to Russia reached the Manchu amban Sanduo in Huree. When Sanduo ordered the Bogd to recall the mission led by Handdorj, the Bogd agreed but demanded that the new administration in Mongolia be revoked and all members of the delegation are given amnesty. Beijing, sensing the discontent among the Mongols, agreed and in October, through its charge d’affaires in St.Petersburg, informed the Russian Foreign Ministry that it had “suspended its military and political reform policy in Mongolia”.
- 1904: A revolt started in Tumed banner of Zostyn chuulgan in Inne Mongolia.
- 1905: A revolt started in Dzungar banner of Ih Zuu. The Ard Ayush rebellion began in Zasagt Han aimag.
- 1906: A popular revolt began in Gorlos banner of Jiremiin Cguulga under the leadership of in IH Huree.
- 1907: Haisan and Almas-Ochir came to Ih Huree.
- 1910: A rebellion of lay people and monks began in Ih Huree.