Asian editorial excerpts.TOKYO, Sept. 15 Kyodo
Selected editorial excerpts from the Asia-Pacific press:
CAUGHT OFF GUARD (Korea Times, Seoul)
Is Seoul ready for drawn-out battle over Dokdo?
The Japanese government's advertisement in local newspapers claiming sovereignty over Dokdo signifies the diplomatic battle over the rocky islets has entered round two.
Tokyo's move, which came just two days after President Lee Myung-bak
Lee Myung-bak (Korean: 이명박, Hanja: 李明博, born December 19, 1941 in Hirano, Osaka, Osaka, Japan) is a former mayor of Seoul, the Republic of Korea and and Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda exchanged a handshake of truce in Russia, seems to have caught Seoul off guard. If so, however, Lee and his aides know neither Japan nor what this issue means to that country. There is nothing surprising about such an act except that it came earlier than expected.
Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan says although Korea will cooperate with Japan on most matters of mutual concern, it wouldn't budge an inch on historical and territorial issues. His Japanese counterpart will say so, too, if he hasn't already. Tokyo's next step will be to bring this case to the International Court of Justice despite opposition from Seoul.
This is a battle that Seoul has to fight -- wisely. Minister Kim said Seoul would also carry its own ads in Japanese papers. But this will just be a waste of money. He only has to imagine how Koreans would respond if the Japanese government publishes its assertions in Korean papers.
The money will have been far better spent if it is aimed at awakening Japan's intellectuals and conscientious citizens into how their regressive political leaders isolate the island country from the rest of Asia, as their militarist ancestors did 75 years ago. Such a job can be done far more effectively through private group meetings than through a nationwide PR blitz, which will only provoke radicals and instigate To incite, stimulate, or induce into action; goad into an unlawful or bad action, such as a crime.
The term instigate is used synonymously with abet, which is the intentional encouragement or aid of another individual in committing a crime. the general public. It is important to persuade the majority of Japanese to drop this issue out of cool-headed judgment than to try to win them over.
Korean officials say, correctly, there will be no ICJ ICJ
International Court of Justice hearings as long as Seoul refuses to be a party. But Tokyo will talk to the international community it is because Seoul has no confidence to win, because, as their ads say, Korea has only vague references in literature but no hard evidence. That will leave a terrible PR effect on Korea. Seoul must prove it won't - not can't - go to ICJ, by securing sufficient and decisive historical materials and evidence.
A far better way is to shift the nature of dispute from a territorial to historical one, which it actually is, like most other East Asian disputes. Most objective historians agree that Japan annexed Dokdo amid the Russo-Japanese war in 1905 as a preliminary step to colonize col·o·nize
v. col·o·nized, col·o·niz·ing, col·o·niz·es
1. To form or establish a colony or colonies in.
2. To migrate to and settle in; occupy as a colony.
3. the entire Korean Peninsula, invade China and later Southeast Asia. The tiny outcroppings are symbolic of where Japanese Imperialism revealed its true character in earnest. Hence their desperate struggle not to admit Korea's sovereignty.
Nor will it be of much help for Seoul, or private Korean groups, to set up Dokdo ad screens abroad to win the sympathy of foreigners, which can even backfire by leading them to suspect Korea's lack of confidence about its sovereignty.
Rather, Seoul needs to remind global villagers of how the messy post-WW II readjustment of East Asia East Asia
A region of Asia coextensive with the Far East.
East Asian adj. & n. by the Cold War-conscious U.S. victors has left a barrage of territorial disputes in this part of the world, as Great Britain did to the Middle East. Given such an element of "original sin," it is all the more difficult for Koreans to understand America's double-standards in Northeast Asia: Washington takes the side of Japan over China in the dispute over the Senkaku islands presumably pre·sum·a·ble
That can be presumed or taken for granted; reasonable as a supposition: presumable causes of the disaster. under the pretext of Tokyo's effective control, but does not do the same for Korea in the Dokdo issue.
The U.S. has long regarded and used Japan as its East Asian beachhead beach·head
1. A position on an enemy shoreline captured by troops in advance of an invading force.
2. A first achievement that opens the way for further developments; a foothold: to contain Russia or China. But any of the three countries have been and will be a potential threat to the U.S. The only country that is large enough to serve as an effective buffer but not enough to pose a threat to America will be a reunified Korea. We hope the next President will have precisely this long-term diplomatic vision.