Lord Nelson
Lord Nelson – A mere peasant compared to the great Korean Admiral, Yi Sun Shin

It seems that Koreans are appearing in the most unlikely places trying to insert Korean nationalist issues into Wikipedia with Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson being compared unfavorably to the little known Korean naval hero, Yi Sun Shin.

Originally there was no reference to Yi Sun Shin on the Nelson article, but some person (99.99% likely to be Korean or ethnic Korean) made some changes.

Here is what it said originally.

Most military historians believe Nelson’s ability to inspire officers of the highest rank and seamen of the lowest was central to his many victories, as was his unequaled ability to both strategically plan his campaigns and tactically shift his forces in the midst of battle. He may have been the greatest field commander in history. Certainly, he stands as the greatest warrior afloat.

And here is the new Korea Manse 韓國萬歲 version.

Most military historians believe Nelson’s ability to inspire officers of the highest rank and seamen of the lowest was central to his many victories, as was his unequaled ability to both strategically plan his campaigns and tactically shift his forces in the midst of battle. Certainly, he ranks as one of the greatest field commanders in military history. Many consider him to have been the greatest warrior of the seas; others rank him equal with or below the 16th-century Korean admiral Yi Sun-Sin, and comparisons have been made between Trafalgar and the Battle of Noryang.

These “others” ranking Lord Nelson equal or below Yi Sun Shin do not exist outside of Korea, I would say.

I suppose there are millions of other alterations Koreans could make to Wikipedia to conflate their nationalist heros with people and events of historical significance. What are we to do? There is an army of Koreans out there that are treating Wikipedia like a soccer match, the goal being to win and place Korea right at the center of the universe.

Cheers to ‘Yooklid’ for finding the Lord Nelson article, and bringing it to my attention.

Posted by Matt, filed under finger chopping wacky, Racist Industrial Complex, Verus Historia. Date: June 20, 2006, 6:01 pm | 77 Comments »

77 Responses

  1. James Says:

    hahahaha, pathetic. What could be going through the mind of such a person when they write stuff like that. Do they really think they can alter the view of the entire world by throwing the name of some random Korean that nobody has ever heard of into a wikipedia article?

  2. zerosum Says:

    How is Yi Sun Shin a “random Korean that nobody has ever heard of”? Those who have studied naval history would be quick to identify Admiral Yi Sun Shin as a key figure who has shaped naval history in East Asia. He is afterall, the first in the world to introduce an iron clad ship. Also, the “battle of Noryangjin” was indeed a well carried out naval plan that dealt a heavy blow to the Japanese fleet which at the time greatly outnumbered Yi’s fleet.

  3. Gerry-Bevers Says:

    Zerosum,

    Would those who have studied naval history rank Admiral Nelson as “equal with or below” Yi Sun-sin?

  4. KimchiPie Says:

    This reminds me of how koreans always try and pass Kumdo off as older then Kendo.

    They will claim that the hwarang (young boys used as homosexual sextoys for the ruling class) invented Kumdo. They claim that hwrang are the worlds first samuri. Utter nonsence! But Koreans will tell anybody who will listen these lies.

  5. umetaro Says:

    I have often seen Yi Sun Shin compared to Nelson in military history discussions before, especially in the context of Noryang/Trafalgar. It’s all perspective when it comes to who was ranked equal to whom. The “below” kind of rankles if you look at it from a western perspective, but makes perfect sense from a Korean one. Perhaps the edited portion would have been better worded thusly:

    Certainly, he ranks as one of the greatest field commanders in western military history, his counterpart in Asia most likely being the 16th-century Korean admiral Yi Sun-Sin with whom many parallels have been drawn.

    Western history texts have a tendency to make universal declarations much like American sports organizations do.

  6. KimchiPie Says:

    Koreans also claim he was better then Drake.

    All we know about Yi Sun Shin was what his diary tells us. By the way, the translator of the most popular verson used admits openly in the preface that he did not criticaly interpret the book. In other words its a lousy interpretation.

    In his diary he spends 90% of his time screwing around and playing games. He only gets in about 3 real battles in 7 years. And only one was of note, the other two were with 20-30 boats. And in his diary, he only talks about his turtle boats about 3 times.

    By the way, its the japanese that invented the ‘iron siding’ and not the koreans. However, the iron siding was probally limited to just spikes and not actually siding at all. But nevertheless, koreans now claim that the entire boat was iron.

    JK, can koreans tell the truth about anything. Toadface please give JK permission to answer this question.

  7. captain jack Says:

    I don’t know a lot about naval history, but I know enough to say that Nelson’s Asian counterpart is usually considered to be Admiral Togo Heihachiro of Japan for his victory against Russia.

    The wikipedia article on Admiral Yi provides 2 obscure passages by British and Japanese historians in which Nelson is compared with Yi. I wouldn’t be surprised if the person who made the alterations was influenced by this.

  8. James Says:

    Yi Sun Shin is “a random korean nobody has ever heard of” because if you were to ask everyone in the world outside of Korea, or even just people who are college educated, probably less than 0.001% of them would know who is he is. Admiral Nelson, on the other hand, is well known in many countries, at least to the point of people having heard his name before. It is certainly because of a western bias in history teaching, but how did Yi Sun Shin’s actions change the world?

    Admiral Nelson’s naval victories were significant in building English power: the naval supremecy that his victories ensured was a critical factor in England’s later imperial dominance of the world. Admiral Yi’s turtle ships delayed Japan’s conquest of Korea, allowing for 300 extra years in which Korea could pretty much achieve nothing in world affairs. Thus, Nelson is better known by people and historians around the world, while Admiral Yi is only known to people who study Korean history.

  9. sqz Says:

    「李舜臣の英雄化は日本が主導した」

    「李舜臣を『救国の英雄』と表したのは日中戦争以後の総動員体制で、植民地朝鮮と帝国日本の間の内鮮一体と統合を強調する論理として活用された」と主張した。

    To put it briefly, this false legend began with Japanese lip service.

  10. mricbm Says:

    We must launch a Wikipedia counter-offensive immediately and create a post about every embarrassing event of Chosun wackiness.

    With your permission I would like to start with Hyeomillyu and use the wonderfully racial tolerant artwork you scanned.

  11. yooklid Says:

    It was a bit of a shocker to come across it for sure. I mean, it was totally random and its presence there seemed completely pointless.

    Of course, I’d already been made aware of things like this by the glory of Occidentalism (Hallowed be thy name).

  12. JK Says:

    Whoah, Kimchipie! This is my first comment on this thread.

    I think Nelson and Ahn were on par with each other as admirals. However, I felt Ahn’s achievements had more of an impact on saving the Korean nation than Nelson’s did for England.

  13. JK Says:

    Who wrote the caption, “Lord Nelson – A mere peasant compared to the great Korean Admiral, Yi Sun Shin”??? Matt, I doubt it was a Korean. Was it you? Tsk tsk…

  14. Matt Says:

    「李舜臣の英雄化は日本が主導した」

    「李舜臣を『救国の英雄』と表したのは日中戦争以後の総動員体制で、植民地朝鮮と帝国日本の間の内鮮一体と統合を強調する論理として活用された」と主張した。

    To put it briefly, this false legend began with Japanese lip service.

    いずれにしても、韓国人は自国の歴史人物の拡大する事実がありますね。ファン ウ ソク教授は例となります。

    追伸:俺の日本語が変でしょう?上記の文章を見ると自分もおかしいと思います。

  15. sqz Says:

    Matt

    追伸:俺の日本語が変でしょう?上記の文章を見ると自分もおかしいと思います。

    Don’t worry.
    No problem.

    自分はアメリカ海軍基地がある横須賀に住んでいますが、日本語と英語のチャンポンでもなんとかなってます。(^^;
    In Yokosuka (I live in this city. There is US Navy base.), I do communicate somehow in Japanese and English mixed language.

  16. tomato Says:

    I don’t recall the Koreans ever winning any signigficant battle against Hideyoshi’s forces. No notable Japanese commanders were killed in the battle- but Yi was killed by Shimazu (later, samurais from the Shimazu clan will initiate the Meiji renovation). The Japanese left because Hideyoshi died and Korea was not much worth occupying. The Korean campaign did little influence on Japanese history- Hideyoshi was already old and his heir too young, therefore, his line would have been taken over by Tokugawa with or without the Korean campaign. Japan’s dependence on Korea ended 1000 years before the campaign and Japan had other more significant trade partners- the Europeans, from who the Japanese learned to use firearms which was very effective against the Korean forces. Even Yi was killed by the gunshot.

    Oh, not to forget the Chinese- hordes of Chinese soliders came in to the rescue of the Chosen kingdom. Kind of reminds me of the Korean war.

  17. umetaro Says:

    The Koreans did win significant battles against Hideyoshi’s forces, but they were mostly at sea. Thus the emphasis on Yi’s contribution… I’m not sure, but I don’t think he ever lost a naval battle during the imjin war.

  18. Matt Says:

    Umetaro, you are completely missing the point. There is no need at all to inject Korea into an article about Lord Nelson, much less claim that Yi Sun Shin is a more significant leader.

  19. tomato Says:

    Umetaro:

    Check these out!

    http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:%E6%96%87%E7%A6%84%E3%83%BB%E6%85%B6%E9%95%B7%E3%81%AE%E5%BD%B9%E3%81%AE%E6%88%A6%E9%97%98

    Yi’s significance is bloated to the extreme, just as many other incidents in Korean history…if the Koreans want to dream that their history is greater than those of other nations by exaggeration, so be it, but please stay inside the Korean penninsula…

    Also, it is curious that they see that defeating the Japanese with the help of China as some worldly event…

  20. umetaro Says:

    Hey tomato,
    My Japanese (much like my english) isn’t that good. I’m afraid you’ll have to translate for me. I don’t think that Korean history is greater than any other nation’s, but I’d like to think it’s just as important.

    Matt, I agree there’s no need to claim Yi Sun Shin as a more significant leader. I do, though, see value in mentioning other comparable figures in Asian history that most westerners would not be aware of. A small sidenote about any comparable naval commander from ANY asian nation would be a valuable addition in my mind.

  21. empraptor Says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Horatio_Nelson%2C_1st_Viscount_Nelson&diff=59740318&oldid=56370546

    Diff of versions of the Wikipedia entry – the point when reference to Yi-Soon-Shin was added and point at which it was deleted.

    If you want to see it directly on Wikipedia. Not much to look at besides what Matt wrote, though.

  22. bulgasari Says:

    These “others” ranking Lord Nelson equal or below Yi Sun Shin do not exist outside of Korea, I would say.

    Actually, the Meiji Era Japanese had a great deal of respect for Yi Sun-shin:

    Prior to the 1905 battle of Tsushima, “Lieutenant Commander Kawada Isao recalled in his memoirs that ‘naturally we could not help but remind ourselves of Korea’s Yi Sun-sin, the world’s first sea commander, whose superlative personality, strategy, invention, commanding ability, intelligence, and courage were all worthy of our admiration.’”

    Nelson’s Asian counterpart is usually considered to be Admiral Togo Heihachiro of Japan for his victory against Russia.

    You might be interested in what Togo Heihachiro had to say about Yi:

    At a party held in his honor, Togo took exception to one eulogy comparing him to Lord Nelson and Yi Sun-sin. “It may be proper to compare me with Nelson,” said the admiral, “but not with Korea’s Yi Sun-sin. He is too great to be compared to anyone.”*

    By preventing Japanese ships from sailing up Korea’s west coast, Yi Sun-sin stopped Hideyoshi’s forces from being able to supply their troops by ship, which ended his dream of conquering China. If not for Yi, it’s not impossible, despite China’s size, that they could have at least seized Beijing – China was weakening at the time, and the Japanese forces were, in the opinion of the author of the book* which I took the above quotes from, one of the best armies the world had ever seen. Yi didn’t just save Korea from being annexed to Japan, he also may have saved China – making his campaigns during the Imjin War of great significance.

    Matt’s assertion that Koreans are “conflat[ing] their nationalist heros with people and events of historical significance” would suggest that he thinks the Imjin War is of little historical significance. To put things in perspective, during Hideyoshi’s first invasion of Korea in 1592, 140,000 troops were ferried over to Busan – compare that with the 30,000 Spanish troops of the Spanish Armada which tried to invade England only 4 years earlier. That no one knows about the former conflict, one involving 300,000 combatants, says a great deal about the Eurocentric point of view of most western history texts.

    * The Imjin War, by Samuel Hawley. The quotes above are from pg 490.

  23. ponta Says:

    Maybe VANK needs to vandalize this site too?

    Hideyoshi Toyotomi (1537 – 1598), Japan’s most brilliant commander who broke the reign of the Daimyo. By 1590 he had conquered the whole of Japan and he found himself suddenly with a superabundance of professional warriors who knew nothing but warfare. Partly to drain off their excess fighting spirit Hideyoshi decided to conquer the world, which for him meant the conquest of China. In 1592 he invaded Korea, his passage to China. His armies overran almost all of Korea, but were stopped when they met the armies of China, which had come to the aid of its Korean satellite.
    http://www.hyperhistory.com/online_n2/History_n2/a.html
    (history 1500-2005)

    (I guess Vank will attack that site too onece they know its existence)

    By the way what Hideyoshi was doing when Yi Sun-sin counterattacked?

    (While it is true that Togo said “It may be proper to compare me with Nelson,” said the admiral, “but not with Korea’s Yi Sun-sin. He is too great to be compared to anyone” it is not Togo nor Japanese people who called Togo “Japanese Nelson, but then English people who called him “Japanese Nelson”ーーーHis statement was the response to that.And he did not make himself ” big” by saying it “may” be ….but Yin is too great”.It is this attitude that, in my opinion, Japanese are impressed.)

    Korean oriented or Euro-oriented, I don’t have much trust on Wiki though it is a useful tool.

  24. bulgasari Says:

    Yes. Only Koreans would ‘desecrate’ or contesta wikipedia page.

    Maybe VANK needs to vandalize this site too?

    [...] His armies overran almost all of Korea, but were stopped when they met the armies of China, which had come to the aid of its Korean satellite.

    Actually, anyone who understands the basic outline of the conflict would notice that the Japanese were “stopped” by the fact they couldn’t supply their troops all the way up the Korean penninsula by ship – due to Yi’s naval exploits. The Chinese troops just convinced them it would be even more difficult to move on; Hideyoshi’s troops defeated the Chinese when they first met them, which caused the Chinese to allow them to retreat back to Pusan without a challenge (mind you, this was during the first attack in 1592-3; during the 2nd attack in 1597-8, the Chinese forces made more of a difference – but only slightly). Of course, pointing this out would be “vandalism”, wouldn’t it?

    By the way what Hideyoshi was doing when Yi Sun-sin counterattacked?

    Yi counterattacked on several occasions, in 1592-93, and 1597 so it would be hard to describe what he was doing without you making it clear which time. During the first invasion Hideyoshi was doing his best to learn noh theatre classics and perform them for toadying underlings who said he was a master; during the second invasion he would have been doting on his young son. Or did you mean “What were Hideyoshi’s troops doing?” During both invasions (but moreso during the first) they would have been running freely across the penninsula, destroying everything in their way (moreso during the second invasion, which was more of a ‘payback’ mission designed to inflict as much damage as possible), until they were hampered by long supply lines due to the lack of sea-borne supplies further north, which was due to ‘he who must not be compared to Nelson and if he is it must be due to some close-minded Korean daring to say such a thing.’

  25. bulgasari Says:

    Oops – “moreso during the first invasion” referred to “running freely over the penninsula” – the deliberate destruction was “moreso during the second invasion”. Should have made that clearer.

  26. ponta Says:

    Thanks

    during the second invasion he would have been doting on his young son.

    Maybe wiki needs correction on this part too.

    In 1598, Toyotomi Hideyoshi died and the Japanese forces in Korea were effectively destroyed. After Hideyoshi’s death, the Council of Five Regents immediately decided to withdraw the Japanese army. Admiral Yi Sun-shin pursued the retreating Japanese navy, and in the Battle of Noryang Point, more than 550 of 600 Japanese ships were sunk

    wiki

  27. Matt Says:

    Matt’s assertion that Koreans are “conflat[ing] their nationalist heros with people and events of historical significance” would suggest that he thinks the Imjin War is of little historical significance.

    Actually, what I mean is that “there are millions of other alterations Koreans could make to Wikipedia to conflate their nationalist heros with people and events of historical significance”, just as I wrote it. That is what is happening. There is no need to inject Korea where is it not necessary. It is inappropriate. If a Korean or ethnic Korean wants to believe that Yi Sun Shin is as great or greater than Lord Nelson, then fine, but leave it out of the English Wikipedia. If a Korean or ethnic Korean wants to believe that “Although the United Nations Army assisted, it was the fierce resistance of our people and our liberation army that secured our freedom from Japan” (like it says in the Korean government mandated history textbooks), that too is fine, but leave the English Wikipedia alone. I am not even going to debate the relative merits of Yi Sun Shin, but I will say that there is a reason most people have never heard of him.

    That no one knows about the former conflict, one involving 300,000 combatants, says a great deal about the Eurocentric point of view of most western history texts.

    Wikipedia does not exist to fix the ‘problem’ of Eurocentricism, nor does it exist to give affirmative action to little known Korean nationalist heroes.

  28. temuchin Says:

    first of all, if you have a problem with editing on wikipedia, the proper place to address it is on wikipedia itself. anyone can make edits and the point of an open-source encyclopedia is to be a more comprehensive source than traditional sources. if that means koreans or other people who persecute you IRL can add POV that pisses you off, so be it

    in the event that you really do have a point about bias in the article make the specific edits on wiki. you choosing instead to rail about an entire nation of people on your blog makes you seem like a hardcore case of
    white-guy-persecuted-in-asia-
    with-an-axe-to-grind-
    and-seeing-conspiracies-around-every-corner
    -because-no-one-respects-me-in-this-fucking-country

    syndrome

    hmm, this being the internet, you would be generally correct automatically characterizing anyone YOU aren’t familiar as automatically “little known.” (after all what of importance in this world could possibly elude the vast intellect and keen insight of Matt? what worth knowing could exist having escaped him? Matt has a blog dammit)

    in this case, however, you’ve picked a poor target. dont get me wrong, the edit definitely could have been cleaner. perhaps by establishing a historical comparisons section befitting Nelson’s status as one of the premier tactical minds in history. but the content of the edit isn’t from left field if you have an interest in naval history. in fact, perhaps after you read this post you’d like to take the initiative and clean up that article for us with the proper changes. that would be sweet

    the most adamant historical comparisons of Yi to Nelson at Trafalgar have actually come from 20th century japanese naval officers. the Imperial Japanese post meiji held Yi as their offical naval diety, and through their influence Yi has become a popular figure among British and American naval historians. not only for their unparalleled (along with Togo as CJ posted above) command of naval strategy but for their swashbuckling valor in saving their homeland from certain conquest by superior forces and their martyrdome on the seas.

    Togo himself considered Yi the master of naval warfare. it’s documented by his staff that before his battle of Tsushima, Togo completed ancestor rights to Yi as his spirtual mentor to receive his blessing in the upcoming battle. Togo maintained even after the Russian war that he was unworthy to be compared to Yi

    outside of japan, the comparison to nelson is made at the US’s naval college among other places

    yi’s even in video games and shit. basically if you’re a military history geek he’s a top 5 military guy from asia.

    but hey. everyone has the right to shoot off their mouth on the internet whether they do or do not have a clue what they’re talking about. but I do have to give you props for keeping .01% probability open. cuz nothing says “I know what I’m talking about” than a 99.99% guarantee

  29. Matt Says:

    first of all, if you have a problem with editing on wikipedia, the proper place to address it is on wikipedia itself. anyone can make edits and the point of an open-source encyclopedia is to be a more comprehensive source than traditional sources. if that means koreans or other people who persecute you IRL can add POV that pisses you off, so be it.

    in the event that you really do have a point about bias in the article make the specific edits on wiki.

    I have no intention of getting into a wikipedia ‘edit war’ with Koreans. There is no point. They are far more determined than I am to get their point across. All I want to do is identify the problem.

    you choosing instead to rail about an entire nation of people on your blog makes you seem like a hardcore case of
    white-guy-persecuted-in-asia-
    with-an-axe-to-grind-
    and-seeing-conspiracies-around-every-corner
    -because-no-one-respects-me-in-this-fucking-country
    syndrome

    I dont live in Korea, and never have, so you are wrong on that point. I am not an English teacher that you can easily target and look down on, so you can take your arrogant assumption and shove it. I am not seeing any conspiracies – Koreans are a problem on wikipedia. A Korean wikipedia user called ‘wikimachine’ is a representative example of what I am talking about. He states this –

    I main objective in the English version of Wikipedia is to promote Korean history and culture, since I am one myself. I believe that working on Korean version of Wikipedia is not as meaningful as working on the English version because this is the international language and more people will learn about Korea through the English version than they would through the Korean version.

    This is exactly the problem I am talking about. Wikipedia does not exist to promote Korea. As for being a white guy with an axe to grind, I think it is more obvious that you are an ethnic Korean with an axe to grind against ‘white guys’.

    hmm, this being the internet, you would be generally correct automatically characterizing anyone YOU aren’t familiar as automatically “little known.” (after all what of importance in this world could possibly elude the vast intellect and keen insight of Matt? what worth knowing could exist having escaped him? Matt has a blog dammit)

    Actually, I am aware of the existence of Yi Sun Shin. However, most of the rest of the world has never heard of him. Despite your time in the west, it seems you have not mastered the use of sarcasm and irony. Do not worry – most kyopo never master it.

    the most adamant historical comparisons of Yi to Nelson at Trafalgar have actually come from 20th century japanese naval officers. the Imperial Japanese post meiji held Yi as their offical naval diety, and through their influence Yi has become a popular figure among British and American naval historians. not only for their unparalleled (along with Togo as CJ posted above) command of naval strategy but for their swashbuckling valor in saving their homeland from certain conquest by superior forces and their martyrdome on the seas.

    Togo himself considered Yi the master of naval warfare. it’s documented by his staff that before his battle of Tsushima, Togo completed ancestor rights to Yi as his spirtual mentor to receive his blessing in the upcoming battle. Togo maintained even after the Russian war that he was unworthy to be compared to Yi

    Which is why Admiral Togo studied the naval arts in the country of Yi Sun Shin, right? Oh no, he studied in the country of Lord Nelson. Wonder why.

    but hey. everyone has the right to shoot off their mouth on the internet whether they do or do not have a clue what they’re talking about. but I do have to give you props for keeping .01% probability open. cuz nothing says “I know what I’m talking about” than a 99.99% guarantee

    I will keep doing what I am doing. Thanks for your contribution here. From now on, I will redouble my efforts.

  30. fukinoto Says:

    Matt,

    Koreans are devoted to expand their own perspectives to the world.
    That’s their only aim and what they do, although they are generally unable to show some respect for historical facts and no interests in taking care of themselves.

    Let me show you some example;

    Amount of articles in Wiki:
    Japan: 279,673
    South Korea: 28,510

    Wow, 10times….Isn’t Korea famous as her Netizen??
    What are they up to??

    Compare the article of the Blue House, the KOREAN White House in Wiki:
    Japan: 青瓦台
    Korea: 정와대
    Now they’ve got to fix this out ASAP, would they??

    This is not my original, but a japanese Expat in Korea mentioned in his blog.
    I thought I should link him, but in case netizen will bother him,
    I’d rather make this blog anonymous unless I got his permission.

    Anyways, as Matt says Koreans should leave english Wiki and japanese Wiki alone, and concentrate on THEIR Wiki.

  31. pekau Says:

    First of all, I’d like to apologies to Nelson-fans about Koreans over-praising Yi Sunshin. However, it is interesting to debate whether who could have been better. Is that what makes history so thrilling?

    As a Korean, I still vote for Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-shin. He, unlike Nelson, was never funded by government to strengthen their navy. Britain had to throw all their resources to support Royal Navy because Britain’s commercial trades and security of colonies, as well as her own defense, relied on sea supremacy. Britain was threatened by Spain, French Empire, and later Germans. The government was willing to pay huge money earned from commercial trades to keep the Royal Navy invincible.

    Yi Sunshin was different. Korean government was divided and corrupted at that time. (And it still is, to my eternal shame) Intelligent and talented Koreans made other corrupted parties jealous. They feared that these enlightened people will take over, and were disgusted with the fact that they were being disrespectful to elders. (Korea has a tradition that older people have more experience and all the top jobs should be held by elders, not by talent. History will repeat itself…)

    Anyways, Yi Sunshin did not get fund from government to build his navy because many people despised him. Heck, he even had to use his own money to feed his men. He, thanks to Japanese spies, was framed as traitor and despite the fact that he prevented Japan to take over Korea… he was tortured and his rank taken away. The government was determined to kill him, but thanks to Yi Sunshin’s generals… he was allowed to become a common soldier stationed in Northern Korea. Please, any normal people would be disgusted by this. Yi Sunshin did not protest a thing, and he even accepted Korean government’s request to become admiral again because the general who replaced Yi Sunshin failed to defeat Japanese navy. Is that nor beautiful? His loyalty was still Korea despite the fact that he was treated like a dog in his own nation. In fact, Japanese viewed Yi Sunshin a legendary and honorable man and tried to recruit him with highest naval rank. He refused, saying that he will not betray his nation.

    Would Nelson have done that? I don’t know. I am not saying that Nelson could not have done that, but let’s be honest. How many people would maintain loyalty to a government that beaten you, stripped your rank and brand you as traitor even if one was innocent?

    Furthermore, Yi Sunshin did not receive any advanced education. He was a warrior, but advanced tactics were unknown and never taught by military schools. Nelson, at a young age, was a sailor himself and had many experience with ships since he became a caption of ship at such young age.

    Yi Sunshin also lost his son when Japanese tried to beat him by attacking his house. (Remember that Japanese armies were dominating the land warfare in Korea due to the fact that many Japanese invaders were professional armies while Korean armies consisted with militants and few professional armies. Plus, Japanese imported a lot of firearms from Portuguese.

    It is true that Japan invented the ironclad ship first. However, it was Yi Sunshin who used ironclad ships effectively.

    His brilliant tactic, also used by Nelson and other great naval commanders, is explained below. And yes, it’s written by me. I wrote this in another history forum. I love history.

    Many countries, including Grand Empire, Japan under leadership of Hideyoshi and Roman Empire, failed to achieve the great navy due to the fact that they were not familiar with sea battles. France, busy fighting a European conflicts (Balance of Power) and could not prepare a proper sea battles. Japan, confident that they would be victorious over Chosen (Korean) navy, was heavily crushed by Yi Sun-shin’s brilliant modernized navy warfare. Rome, having constant conflict with neighbor powers and barbarians, were not experienced in sea battles until they became powerful enough to wage wars against Carthage.

    This is because such countries named before relied heavily on “Grappling hook” tactic – that is, a strategy in which armed forces on the ships would land on enemy ships and eliminate the enemies. Rome was able to win over Carthage because Romans invented a giant ladder that would be dropped and hook on the enemy ship. Roman soldiers, well-trained in land battle, would travel to enemy ships by the ladder and changing the sea battle to land battle.

    Napoleon, though used the same strategy, failed thanks to Nelson’s tactic quite similar to Yi Sun-shin’s method of destroying the enemy ships by powerful cannons and well-trained anchors to keep the enemy ships away from their ships.

    I am not saying that Nelson wasn’t a great commander either… He was a brilliant man!

    And I suppose that it is hard to compare these two brilliant commanders. European warfare was quite different than battles in Far East. Numerically speaking, Japan at time of Yi Sunshin possessed the greatest number of ships, even dwarfing the Spanish Armada. But Korean and Japanese ships were different from European ships, and the fact that Japan was not familiar with Korea’s geography gave Yi Sunshin more advantage than Nelson because France was, at that time, a center of enlightenment. French people already had good deal of knowledge regarding Britain’s geography.

    But it is also arguable that Nelson had unfair advantage as well. Japanese armies concentrated only on Korea, and Yi Sunshin was vastly outnumbered. Nelson, however, was uncertain of attacking French and Spanish fleet. However, the Austria-Hungary and Prussia combined their forces and attacked Napoleon. Napoleon now had two fronts, and he dragged much of his armies to suppress the Austrian and Prussia forces. Nelson, learning that Napoleon left to fight other nations, surprise attacked and crushed the French and Spanish fleet by preventing enemy ships to get too close and prevent French and Spanish armies to use “Grappling hook” tactic by shelling the approaching ships with cannons. (Heh, shelling is not really a right word… but oh well.)

    I can list more reasons on and on, but I got some Chemistry homework to do… so I will stop here. But as long as one can justify their points with logical and reasonable answer… you are correct. Just because Koreans are not playing fair does not mean you have right to do the same… right? Who cares? Stick to your opinion, but be open to other opinions. In history, no one could be truly right.

    And someone wrote that 0.0001+/-0.001 % people know about Yi Sunshin but many knows about Nelson… GIVE US A BREAK!!! Nelson was a European was was born in more modern world. His name spread more widely since he was not only a military hero in Britain… but also for people fighting against Napoleon. His tactics, which inspired Royal Navy, became legendary… he was fortunate enough to be born in Europe. Understand… winners make history. For all we know, we would all be praising Hitler if he did not foolishly invaded Russia without good tactics. No Europeans are going to care about a Korean admiral died sometime in 16th century. Beside, Korea was weak by the time Europeans came to Far East. Korea was just another Japanese colony back then. For those who said such comment, that is very biased. Please understand and respect the fact that many Asians nations were not as advance as Europeans were, not to mention our constantly corrupted government.

    Anyways, any criticisms are welcome. I debated about this topic many times, so any criticisms are welcome. Remember, I may be wrong as well. No one knows what is true in history. We can only hope that we can try to reason ourselves that we are getting close to the truth. Mathematically speaking, truth is like asymptotes. (I am so nerdy…)

    By the way, I am Korean and I recently immigrated to Canada… so my English still needs improvement. I started to practice my English about 2 and half years ago, but I am still not there yet. And I rushed the typing, so there may be some errors as well. My humble apologies.

    But I assure you that I can read your comments.

    From,
    pekau

    Future IB Revolutionist and eternal fan of Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-sin, the greatest navy admiral in history of mankind.

  32. Matt Says:

    Interesting perspectives, pekau. I can see you put a lot of effort into your comment.

  33. tomato Says:

    Yi sunshin used guerilla tactics and attacked Japanese supply ships. Actually, he died when he fought with Shimazu’s forces. Another example of Koreans overglorifying themselves.

    Korea was spared because Hideyoshi became ill and the Chinese intervened (like the Korean war). NOT becuase of some naval victory. I recall only one Daimyo was killed in battle, and not the major ones like Kato Kiyomasa, Konishi Yukinaga and Shimazu.

  34. ponta Says:

    pekau

    Anyways, any criticisms are welcome. I debated about this topic many times, so any criticisms are welcome.

    I know little about this guy but I think this guy is great, but let me ask you a few questions since you seem to know a lot about him.
    1)Who made Yi Sunshin famous? and about what time did Korean people begin to appreciate this guy as much as Korean people today ?
    2)Weren’t Japanese troops ordered to retreat because Hideyoshi was dead when this guy was successfully attacking Japanese troops?
    3)What rate of Chinese troops were there? Was the winning possible without help of Chinese troops?

  35. GarlicBreath Says:

    Yi Sun Shin wasn’t that impressive.Koreans overglorify him. Koreans make similar claims about Kim Il Sung. Koreans wont do any serous scholorly work on Yi because they dont want to find out the truth.

  36. chul_soo Says:

    hello garlicbreath
    what is the truth about General Yi? and why do u believe that there arent any serious studies done on him? i dont think it make sense to compare dictator Kim to General Yi. also, when u say koreans, please clarify which korean u are talking about. Sk people hate dictator kim. Nk people probably hate him even more but cant express their feeling because it might result in death or torture.
    pekau, u must have spent great amount of minutes for one comment. it was very impressively long. imagine how much time and effort u have to put in to run a blog like occidentalism.

  37. GarlicBreath Says:

    Chul sue,

    You have asked many quesions. I wont answer them all.

    I dont mean to hurt your Korean pride by speaking the truth that Yi.

    I believe that there are no studies on him becuase I have found none. I have read his ‘diary’ and anything else I can find about him and I found it all lacking. If you know of somthing please enlighten me.

    I dont compare Kim and Yi but koreans worship both.

    NK and SK people don’t hate kim, quit fooling yourself.

    The truth about Yi is that he didn’t invent the first ‘iron’ boat. The Japanese did. The turtle boats were not decisive in battle. He was a coward and that is why he was demoted. He spent more time playing go and archery then anything else. He faught one big battle two small ones and the rest of his battles consisted of things like burning abandoned boats on shore, which ranks him as a small potato. He was irrational and arrogant.

    Pekau has been blinded by his blood.

  38. GarlicBreath Says:

    Pekau-

    No offence but comments like this are an anachronism.

    Future IB Revolutionist and eternal fan of Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-sin, the greatest navy admiral in history of mankind.

    Korea has no such office then. In fact there was no distintion between admiral and general. They never called anybody an admiral. To call him the greatest of anything is just nutty.

    I guess you are desperate for someone korean to be great. I too wish Korea had just one…. just one person in all her 5000 years of history to be great. But alas, there are none. None, and Yi is not close. In my opinion the greatest Korean, as history will judge, will probally be Ro Moo Hun.

    I did like that Hwang guy, but then he was forcing his student to give up their eggs so he could be famous. Pretty sad, i know, but what can I say. Good luck in Canada. I always wonder why Koreans are so brainwashed and worship everything Korean jump ship so quickly and move to places like Canada.

  39. chul_soo Says:

    garlicbreath

    i have asked 2 questions and it was too many for u. next time, i will ask one question. u did not hurt my korean pride in any way. but thanks for being polite and considerate. i think u should go to ur local library if u r interested about Yi (but im sure u r not that interested)… u will probably find something there.
    pakau is not blinded by his blood but u r certainly blindly by something… perahps kimchee goong mul?

  40. GarlicBreath Says:

    Thank you chul sue.

    Local library??? lol.

    Again, if you know of any serous scholorly works, please let me know. As I know that there are none, I stand by my comments. You also know that I am correct.

  41. tomato Says:

    For one thing, I would like to know which naval battle was significant to defeat Hideyoshi’s forces.

    The last one Yi participated was actually after Hideyosi’s death, and the Chinese and Korean forces attacked Japanese forces that were trying to pulling out from Korea (the Japanese did not wish to continue the war after their leader had died). And the Japanese did succed in that with minimal loss, while Yi was killed by Shimazu forces. It’s interesting that the so-called “great victory” is not recorded by the Japanese as any great defeat, and major daimyos like Shimazu, Kato and Konishi still went on to be significant players in the post Hideyoshi-era. The Japanese completed its goal of retreating from the Korean penninsula with minimal loss. Maybe the Chinese and the Koreans some how misinterpreted the retreat of the Japansese as their “great victory”.

  42. ponta Says:

    The reason I asked the question (1) above (when did he begin to be appreciated by Korean people as much as he is now? )is because I read the scholar article b Chosun libo. introducing the book written by Korean scholar, Kon Iksun(?).
    It is said that the author claims the reason Yin Sunsin, Kim Okyun, and the Queen Min ,, were brought to life to the Korean public by dramas and novels after the Korean Independence was the desperate attempt to hide the shameful fact that Korea was pro-Japanese, by making them heroes, emphasizing the legitimacy of Korean race.( Here I am roughly summarizing and translating what is written. )

    Come to think of it, as has been discussed on another thread, the Queen Min was considered “an embodiment of all the evils of the decaying dynasty” by Korean historians, but after the rise of ultranationalism in Korea, she is now called the mother of the country. I thought Yi Sunshin might also be the figure who was discovered after the independence with the rise of Korean ultranationalism as this author insinuated.
    (of course I don’t deny that he is great, though I reserve the judgment as to
    how much credit should go to him.)

  43. Errol Says:

    pekau Said:

    November 9, 2006 at 9:00 pm

    (Korea has a tradition that older people have more experience and all the top jobs should be held by elders, not by talent. History will repeat itself…)

    Talking of history repeating itself, Bill Gates the Microsoft Man has never been too proud to learn from non-Americans, though like many Koreans Americans he may not always provide sufficient acknowledgement of his debt to others.

    Sir John Moore returned to England in 1803 to command a brigade at Shorncliffe camp near Folkestone, where he established the innovative training regime that produced Britain’s first permanent light infantry regiments. He had a reputation as an exceptionally humane leader and trainer of men; it is said that when new buildings were being constructed at the camp and the architect asked him where the paths should go, he told him to wait some months and see where the men walked, then put the paths there.

  44. kojibomb Says:

    Ponta and garlicbreath,

    It is said that the author claims the reason Yin Sunsin, Kim Okyun, and the Queen Min ,, were brought to life to the Korean public by dramas and novels after the Korean Independence was the desperate attempt to hide the shameful fact that Korea was pro-Japanese

    I think that’s true. Maybe not to hide the shameful fact blahblahblah but that they were brought to life to the Korean public by dramas and novels.

    you see… during that time… Korea was the underdog. They did not have stronger army or navy like Japan or China so when Japan invaded, everyone just ran away including the king, but Yi Sun sin fought back…. He and many other soldiers who fought during that time were not cowards like the others. I guess Yi sun sin is just getting credit for being brave. (and maybe good tactics??…)

    I guess you are desperate for someone korean to be great. I too wish Korea had just one…. just one person in all her 5000 years of history to be great

    Why do you say that… Korea had some good people. For ex…

    King Sejong who invented the Hangeul… he did that for the lower class people… that’s pretty good.

    Jumong who founded Goguryo…. Goguryo was able to expand its terriory through some parts of China. GwangGeto was great too… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goguryeo shows some amazing establishments by Goguryo before getting coquered by Silla and its ally.

    And Baekjae had considerable influence over Japan like sending the first Buddha images there so… she prob had many great people/scholars too…

    Korea has rich and great 5000 yrs history. You can’t just say just one person in all her 5000 years of history to be great

    and leave impression that Korean history is not as worth much as… say Japanese history.

  45. ponta Says:

    Kojimob
    I believe Korea has many things to be proud of.
    But when Koreans are proud of their country for the wrong reason, non-Koreans are put off.
    here is a recent news by Taiwanese. I don’t understand exactly what she is talking about in Chinese , but from the Chinese characters, I guess she is reporting that some Koreans claim Taiwanese pitcher that Taiwanese are proud of is in reality Korean.

    King Sejong who invented the Hangul… he did that for the lower class people… that’s pretty good.

    It is great that King Sejong invented the Hangul, but the Hangul did not spread until the colonization. It was despised as a letter for women and kids. And still I think Koreans have right to be proud of him.

    Koreans should be more careful because it is no longer hermit nation but everyone is watching it.

  46. ponta Says:

    Kojimob

    when Japan invaded, everyone just ran away including the king

    As a side note, not every one run away. It is said some Koreans people fought on the side of hideyoshi, because domestic politics was so devastating they welcomed the” invader” as a liberator. Some argue that that is why Hideyoshi could so easily invaded Korea.

  47. GarlicBreath Says:

    Koji-

    King Sejong who invented the Hangeul… he did that for the lower class people… that’s pretty good.

    Invented? He copied a lot from Mongolian script Phans Pa.

    http://www.omniglot.com/writing/phagspa.htm

    Sejong Professor of Korean History Gary Leland says Hangul just copied Phangs Pa.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_Ledyard

    By the way, it was the Japanese that forced Korea to use Hangul in the schools.

  48. GarlicBreath Says:

    Koji-

    Korea has rich and great 5000 yrs history. You can’t just say just one person in all her 5000 years of history to be great

    Don’t forget that Korea has four seasons too! Four! Can you belive it FOUR!!

    For more information about Korea’s 5000 years of history and four seasons please go to–> http://prkorea.com/

  49. tomato Says:

    kojibomb,

    Koreans are the only ones who believe Koguryo was a Korean state. By a Korean state I mean a country ran by the Korean race, not any country that happened to have territory within the Korean penninsula. And it is also doubtful that Paekche’s ruling class was Korean…in fact, both Koguryo and Paekhe were likely related to the Japanese.

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/HI16Dg01.html
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/sci;300/5619/597
    (footnote7)

  50. tomato Says:

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/HI16Dg01.html

    An additional twist is added by the little-known fact that the few surviving Koguryo words seemingly demonstrate that its inhabitants did not speak a language ancestral to modern Korean. The language of Silla was proto-Korean indeed, but the known Koguryo words have close analogues in early Japanese, of all languages. It is not incidental that the only research book on the Koguryo language is called Koguryo: The Language of Japan’s Continental Relatives (by Christopher I Beckwith, published in 2004). Not all linguists would agree with this opinion, but it is shared by the majority and still never mentioned by participants of the discussion.

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/sci;300/5619/597

    Around 400 B.C., intensive rice agriculture, new pottery styles, and new tools, all based on Korean models, appeared on the southwestmost Japanese island of Kyushu near Korea and spread northeast up the Japanese archipelago. Genes and skeletons of the modern Japanese suggest that they arose as a hybrid population between arriving Korean rice farmers and a prior Japanese population similar to the modern Ainu and responsible for Japan’s earlier Jomon pottery. Modern southwest-to-northeast gene clines in Japan and DNA extracted from ancient skeletons support this interpretation (59, 60). Japanese origins would thus rival Bantu origins as the most concordant and unequivocal example of an agricultural expansion, were it not for the flagrant discordance of the linguistic evidence. If Korean farmers really did become dominant in Japan as recently as 400 B.C., one might have expected the modern Japanese and Korean languages to be as closely similar as other languages that diverged at such a recent date (e.g., German and Swedish), whereas their relationship is in fact much more distant.
    The likely explanation is language replacement in the Korean homeland. Early Korea consisted of three kingdoms with distinct languages. The modern Korean language is derived from that of the ancient Korean kingdom of Silla, the kingdom that unified Korea. However, the now-extinct language of one of the two ancient Korean kingdoms that Silla defeated, Koguryo, was much more similar to Old Japanese than is Sillan or modern Korean (61). Thus, a Koguryo-like language may have been spoken by the Korean farmers arriving in Japan, may have evolved into modern Japanese, and may have been replaced in Korea itself by Sillan that evolved into modern Korean.

  51. GarlicBreath Says:

    Tomato-

    thanks for the informaion and links. I dont expect Koreans ever to do any real research on Koguro as they dont want to find out the truth.

  52. Errol Says:

    Genes …. of the modern Japanese … a hybrid population between arriving Korean rice farmers and a prior Japanese population. …a Koguryo-like language may have been spoken by the Korean farmers arriving in Japan, may have evolved into modern Japanese, and may have been replaced in Korea itself by Sillan that evolved into modern Korean.

    Fascinating. The genetic case for Anschluss. Pyongyang, Seoul or Tokyo for Neo-Koguryo’s capital? It’s amazing how the cultures of the modern day successors of the three Korean genetic families have diverged.

  53. kojibomb Says:

    tomato,

    wow…. great info

    but… my textbook for an elective course called “the human past” (about World prehistory and development of human societies) according to that basically… it shows greater Korean influence in Japan than vice versa.

    Ex) in the early ages ( no civilization country wtv) many graves in Japan in the western part have very Kimchi flavor to it(comparing to graves in Korea). That can mean anything but… these archaeologists suggest that many Korean people (people who lived in Korean region) prob migrated to Japan. They also say that this is how Japanese people started to domesticate animals and plants from the Korean people.

    about.. language… i dont know much about ancient language.. because Japan and Korean history are not really concentrated (maybe they are not so much important as .. ummm chinese history?)
    the book says

    the second dynasty of Yamato is named after its founder, Ojin, whose reign dates traditionally fall between AD 346 and 395. It was during his rule that Korean tutors brought literacy to Japan

    This book has some info about relationship btw korea and Japan.. i can look it up for you guys.. maybe about Kaya?? is it Japanese or Korean?? kind of thing

  54. kojibomb Says:

    garlicbreath,

    and I think Caucasians, chinese, people from all around the world already done studies in Korean land. But, many of them are controversy… like Kaya

  55. tomato Says:

    Fascinating. The genetic case for Anschluss. Pyongyang, Seoul or Tokyo for Neo-Koguryo’s capital? It’s amazing how the cultures of the modern day successors of the three Korean genetic families have diverged.

    According to the report I posted, the three Korean kingdoms were not genetically related (except maybe for Koguryo and Paekche), and modern day Korea is decended from Silla, which was probably not ethnically related to Japan. Also, you mix up statehood with ethnicity…immigration to Japan predates any state in Korea…just like England is no heir of any German states, Japan (Yamato) is not decended from any of the kingdoms in ancient Korea. And even if there was ethnic relationship, cultures could be very different…like the example I gave…England and Germany. Or even Italy and England, or India, Iran and England (all same Indo-Europeans).

    Anyways, Japan does not endorse the view that being possibly ethnically related to old Korean kingdoms gives at any “glory” or some right of land…so my point was to show that even ancient history is distorted for the sake of Korean pride and territorial ambitions.

  56. tomato Says:

    but… my textbook for an elective course called “the human past” (about World prehistory and development of human societies) according to that basically… it shows greater Korean influence in Japan than vice versa.

    Did I refute that? I pasted documents that basically say that Japan was settled by people from the Korean penninsula. No body denies that in Japan. And noody denies that Japan kept contact with Korean states and imported Chinese culture via Korea.

    But this relationship did end very early, as Japan lost her allies in Korea (Koguryo and Paekche…interesting that these states may be ethnically related to Japan) and Silla and the later Koryo kingdom being essentially Japan’s enemy, Japan had to sail directly to China to learn advanced technologies and cultures of the day (which was very dangerous back in the 7th Centrury). So, the Korean claim on having cultural infulence on Japan is still much exaggerated. They shouldn’t be claiming that…they tried to block Japan from having contact with China, you know…what a contributor to Japanese civilization!

  57. Aki Says:

    Tomato, thank you for the interesting links.

    Similarity between the words in old Koguryo and old Japanese are also described in the following PDF file. It also shows that the words used in Koguryo/Japan were radically different from Korean words.
    http://www.msu.edu/~jk13/Abs.Beckwith.pdf

    ‘three’
    Old Koguryo: mir ; Old Japanese: mi

    ‘five’
    Old Koguryo: ütsi ; Old Japanese: itu

    ‘child’
    Old Koguryo: ku ; Old Japanese: k ú, kwo, ko

    ‘tree, wood’
    Old Koguryo: kir, key ; Old Japanese: kì, ki

    ‘deep’
    Old Koguryo: puk ; Old Japanese: puka- ; Early Middle Korean: kiph u˙n

    ‘level, flat’
    Old Koguryo: piar ; Old Japanese: pira- ; Early Middle Korean: ‘y o˙th o˙/ny o˙th o˙/’yath u˙n

    ‘valley’
    Old Koguryo: tan ; Old Japanese: tani ; Early Middle Korean: kolk o˙i

  58. Errol Says:

    tomato Said:

    November 11, 2006 at 3:17 am

    Anyways, Japan does not endorse the view that being possibly ethnically related to old Korean kingdoms gives at any “glory” or some right of land

    Anschluss means political union not minor land grabs like the Liancourt Rocks.

  59. Errol Says:

    Though in its original sense anschluss means connection.

    May I take this opportunity to once again thank Matt for providing a forum for Korean, Japanese and other peoples to make connections.

  60. tomato Says:

    Errol:

    Yes. .I know what Anschluss means. It’s from the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

    I just don’t get it when Koreans claim that Japan was some offshoot of the old Korean kingdoms (I’ve seen claims that Paekche “begot” old Yamato)…if the linguisitic relationship is really true, then it’s more like brotherly relationship than a parent and offspring one (the latter the Koreans like to claim). And the Koreans are also overlooking the indigeneous influence on the Japanese…the Ainu share many heritage and culture with the Japanese (to be precise, with the Yamato people, as I rather think Ainu are fellow Japanese).

    About the cultural infuluence, Koreans also mix them all up to serve their goal of self-satisification. The very ancient Japanese had similar cultures because they were brother tribes with some tribes in the Korean penninsula. During the three kingdom period, cultural similarities are becuase the Japanese (the Yamato kingdom) imported Chinese-style civilization from the Korean penninsula. And there was another wave of Korean immigrants at this time too, but there is no proof that the immigrants overwhelmed the native population at that time (rather, they were absorbed). When Japan lost her allies Koguryo and Paekche, Japan was cut off from the Korean penninsula and had to cross the storm-infested East China Sea with primitive ships to get direct access. Many people were lost at sea, you know… So, whenever I hear Koreans saying that they taught the barbaric Japanese civilization, I would have to doubt how much they really know…and wonder where the arrogance comes from? Some Chinese risked their lives to give the Japanese enlightenment. The Koreans???

  61. Errol Says:

    I agree with your point about the ethnic connections not preventing nation based enmity. As was seen in WW1 and WW2 between Germany and the UK. Even to the extent of the royal cousins King George V King George V and Kaiser Wilhelm.

    As the Korean military was emasculated by a Confucian caste system that didn’t want a strong military that might provide low-born soldiers an opportunity to overthrow the Korean aristocracy the war between Japan and Korea was less bloody than the wars between Germany and the UK.

    In modern times power is more economic than military and the struggle to keep low-born people (and all women and foreigners are low-born according to Korean males) from positions of power is a major hindrance to Korea’s move from a manufacturing-based economy to a service-based economy.

    It is often claimed that modern Korean men do not believe such things but the wishful dreaming of female soap opera scriptwriters and what happens in real life are completely different.

  62. pekau Says:

    Wow, this is some debate… and frankly, I love it!

    Well, I’d like to point some things out. Yi Sunshin being… coward? Really, who is biased now? Just because he did not have enough troops to fight Japanese invaders one by one does not mean that he is coward!!? Sad reality, but honor and glory is not what makes people great… it is power. No one in the world remember enormous sacrifice made by Soviet Union in World War II. Imagine, over half of troops died in WWII were Russian soldiers. They fought bravely, arguably the most brave army the world has ever seen. Yes, these soldiers were influenced by propaganda… but what kind of bravery would it require for a person with an outdated rifle, assuming that he had one, against professional German heavy fire? But no one in Western world cares! Why? Because Russians, part of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (U.S.S.R.), became an enemy of America… and was defeated. History is made by winners. I repeat, HISTORY IS MADE BY WINNERS. We get seriously shocked at Hitler’s will to exterminate 6 million Jews… and yet, we do not give a damn about millions of Africans dying as we speak. I will be honest, I would be more concern about my future university than saving people in Africa. Cruel? Yes. I will not deny it. But that’s the reality. For those who disagree with me… well, you got a good heart. But then why not pack your bags and decide to become missionary in Africa right now? Allow me to make a fair guess, you are not going to help out. Sure, you could make some donations, and perhaps… you could visit Africa personally and help out a bit… but the fact is clear. You will still want to go back to comfortable civilization. I am not saying you people are all criminals. But, from my opinion, no one should have right to just simply conclude that a person was just crazy and demonic. Would Hitler be so bad if he won WWII? Students will be taught in history classes that Hitler was a greatest leader the world has ever seen. And he just did not hate Jews for fun, folks. He was constantly bullied by German Jews when he was in Jr. High. His mother got breast cancer and thought he doctor tried to operate surgery to prevent cancer… it costed Hitler’s mother a breast. Guess the race of the doctor? A Jew. When he got interested in painting, he applied to attend University of Paris. The person responsible to accept or reject the admission rejected Hitler. Guess who he was? A Jew. And the list goes on…

    Don’t get me wrong. Hitler was a good leader of German people, but as a human being, he was a horrible man. Not only that he persecuted Jews, he ignored all his best generals who helped Hitler to conquer Europe… and attacked Soviet Union for his obsession against Slavic people and Communists.

    Ask any leaders if they want to lose? Yi Sunshin’s main goal was to sink as many Japanese ships as possible. His loyalty to nation as Korean, his duty as soldier of Korea, his responsibility as head of family and his small army was not an easy task. As I have mentioned earlier, he never received any funds to strengthen his fleet.

    I do admit that ironclad turtle ship was not as effective as it was. It was, indeed, an over exaggeration made by Korea. There were very little turtle ships to show their true potential. They were mostly used as psychological warfare.

    Shooting arrows and cannons to merchant ship is coward? Please… do some research before making arguments and wasting my time! In Japan, most of their fleet were merchant ships! Why? As I have mentioned earlier, Japanese infantry was far more superior than Koreans. (Ex. Samurai. Do I need to say more?) Once the Japanese merchant ships surround and allowing Japanese troops to land Korean ships… Korea is doomed! Numerically disadvantaged and overwhelmed by skilled enemy infantry, Koreans used all their advantages that they had to defeat their enemy? If you are still imagining this glory and honor war that are often shown in Lord of the Rings and King Arthur… you are mistaken. Aragorn is considered hero since he won. If he lost, his significance, no matter how great or brave he is, would mean very little.

    And sorry to disappoint you Errol… It was indeed Koreans who were mainly responsible for the development of Japanese society. But I do admit that Korea was not the only influence. There was no distinctive Korean culture back then… it was really Chinese. Korean Buddhists, in the name of Buddha, sailed to Japan and taught advanced skills and culture. Korean influence began to diminish as Korea experienced internal war (Civil war) that lasted thousands of years. Ever since the great struggle of Korea, Japan began to become more independent. It began to shape its unique culture. Buddhism, spreaded by Koreans and Chinese, was soon being competed by Japanese religion: Shinto.

    Of course, I do understand that many Koreans would embarrassed our nation for sake of their pride. Let’s face it. Korea was unique and great nation, but it was never a formidable nation. (With possible exception of Goguryeo, since it repelled enormous Chinese armies many times.)

    To some extent, it is interesting to note some similarities between Italy and Korea. Both are very proud nations. They both had significant cultural and military strength in the beginning. However, they cannot understand that other races are unique and important as well. Many Koreans hate Japan not only because of long history, but due to Japan’s harsh rule in Korea during the Second World War. Though it was not as severe as Jewish holocaust, it was still violent, bloody, and brutal. My great grand father was among the peaceful protesters against Japan’s harsh policy, but many of the protestors were shot to death. My great grandfather was not so lucky. Instead of getting fatal shot, he got shot in the left eye which paralyzed his eyesight as well as face muscle tissues. He was arrested, electrocuted and beating, and died in cell due to lead poisoning. (Back in WWII, the ammunitions were not clean and were often contaminated with harmful substances.

    And about Queen Min… well, mein Gott in himmel… who in the right mind said she should be “mother of Korea”? Ah, such shame. I have done some extensive studies and, frankly, I am embarrassed to say that she was a Korean. She was Marie Antoinette of France and Tsaritsa Alexandra Fyodorovna of Imperial Russia. She welcomed many foreign powers to take over Korea and protect her as Queen of Korea. She was assassinated by Japan’s secret police, for she was welcoming China to interfering Japanese dominance over Korea.

    But hey, remember what I said? Winners make history. As a student who’s passion is science and history, I believe that it is my duty to understand the history from many sources. You have no idea how social textbooks used are so corrupted. Be careful with what other people say. Do not listen to the facts if it makes no logical sense. That’s why I dislike the belief of getting through social by memorization. What? You want to ace in propaganda class?

    As a human being, it is my nature to be biased… though I try to be least biased as possible. As Korean, it is natural for me to protect Korea’s pride. But I will not hide this… Korea is among the most corrupted and inefficient nations in the world. Look at Japan. They were literally barbaric while Korea was an advanced civilization. But look at Japan now. Her economy, military, scientific advancement, and her pride overwhelms Korea’s. Why? Japan knew that they were very disadvantaged, for they were isolated from other major civilization. But they learned from them. They set aside their pride, and treated Korean and Chinese as Gods. They learned their failure against Yi Sunshin, so they reformed their military. General Togo, known as the Nelson of the East for his brilliant victories against Britain in Sino-Japanese War, and demolishing the great Baltic Fleet of Imperial Russia in Port Arthur. Despite his overwhelming achievement, which astounded British (Since they held sea supremacy for long time) General Togo admitted that he could not be compared with Yi Sunshin. Japan may play dirty, and they may not be nice to everyone… but they respect people by skills and talents, not by age and experience as Korea dearly hold on to. Japan took good things and changed for Japan’s benefits. Korea, with her sinful pride, remain stubborn to change. That was the mistake that Imperial Russia, Austria-Hungary and China made.

    I have presented my opinions, my sense of justification and defense to Yi Sunshin, and attempted to be less biased as possible. Here is my sense of justice. I’d be looking forward to deeply thought critics. It is a crime for anyone to judge and influence other people’s opinion about a country with limited knowledge. I tried my best. I hope you would be as well. I hope that Korea’s pride would be respected. I also hope that Koreans would not cross the line and be reasonable in sense of our pride. Remember, many of the true genius are the modest ones.

    From,
    pekau

    Future IB Revolutionist and eternal fan of Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-sin, the greatest navy admiral in history of mankind.

    P.S. I know that the sentence above is biased, but come on. I am Korean. Can’t I have some fun with my title?

    P.S.S. Garlicbreath, stop making generalization. Excuse me speaking frankly… but I have been blinded by my blood? That Koreans worship Yi Sunshin and Kim Jung Il? Please, you already sound like a propapganda minister. If you have a point to make, then give us reasons instead of mocking us. Furthermore, you stated that sources about Yi Sunshin is lacking. Who are you to judge which source is valid for invalid? Reading briefly translated English version of his diary is indeed very limited resource.. and that’s why you find them. It’s hard, for many historians do not care about Korean history as much as European and North American’s… but isn’t that what history is about? Finding out the truth? How long will you limit your knowledge just because Western civilization limit such history in the world you live in? If you simply do not care, than I am sorry to waste yours and my time. But do not limit other people’s knowledge by insisting your beliefs and values. I am NOT SAYING that you are totally wrong, for history is a tricky business..but talk about it. Reason your arguements. Use your logic to see if the source is accurate. I feel that our history should no longer be created by winners. Isn’t it about time for humanity to learn the truth?

    Who’s the blinded one now?

  63. tomato Says:

    pekau

    Future IB Revolutionist and eternal fan of Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-sin, the greatest navy admiral in history of mankind

    Well, that’s the problem…don’t make him a worldly figure!!! Even if Yi Sunshin did a good job, the conflict was regional at best, and Korea didn’t march into “world glory” thereafter. There is absolutely no worldly significance to the war except maybe for the fact that Ming China was weakened by the war efforts and soon was overwhelmed by the Manchus.

    And the question I’ve been aslking, is…did Yi Shunshin ever fight any decisive battle against the Japanese forces in the first place? He did cause trouble along the supply lines (not merchant ships, as you suppose), but the cold fact is, Japan’s leader died during the war, and since the Japanese Daimyos weren’t enthusiastic about his idea of conquering Ming China (by using Korea as a passage way), and left without any great losses (of course, without much achievenments, either). And the Japansese just went on fighting each other again to be ultimately unified by the Tokugawa clan with no recognizable adverse effect from the failure of the Korean invasion. I guess in Korea, they teach you that Japan became poor thereafter because it was cut-off from Korea…and that’s really silly.

    And do you really think Japan was backwards then? I think Koreans need to look into Japanese history more, as Japan was probably more richer and in fact more technologically advanced than Korea at the time. Unlike Korea, Japan had opened herself to European merchants at the time, and was manufacturing tons of firearms…bulding ships to trade with SE Asian countries (there was Japan towns in Thailand)…what was Korea doing at the time?

  64. pekau Says:

    That’s why I said this… that Korea was definitely more advanced than Japan until the Korea became Joseon. Until then, Japan was hardly considered a civilization, according to China and Korea. And you have to understand… Japan was not stupid enough to simply send supply ships… only to be sunk by Koreans. They had warships, for Japan’s number of ships dwarfed the Spanish Armada at that time. The internal struggle of Japan after the death of Hideyoshi… so what? Japan decided to retreat… so what? That does not mean that Japan just left for sake of Koreans. If they lose the will to fight war, they retreat. Is that not, to extent, a victory? Furthermore, someone mentioned that Korea is not worth occupying…

    Really?

    Why do you think Hideyoshi attacked it in the first place? Korea is valuable to Japan due to many reasons. Japan’s population is growing. Like commerical revolution in Europe, more population require more food production. Just look at Japan’s geography. Most of the Japan’s mainland is mountains, unsuitable to farm. Furthermore, Japan was still not unified. The fragile alliance formed by Hideyoshi was unstable… and Hideyoshi knew it. He needed to divert the Japanese attention to something else than internal struggle. What do warriors want? War for glory and honor, not to mention wealth since samurai cannot make a living without war. Lack of war later on in Japan caused some serious class struggle that weakened Japan. For instance, samurai were becoming a class higher than peasant because they were allowed to carry swords. But that was basically the only advantage.

    Korea did not welcome European traders. Japan did, but only for while. Japan was suppose to get the Portugese help, but Japan shut them down before Chirstianity and liberalism could tear Japan apart. Only few Dutch and Chinese trades were allowed in Nagasaki (Not sure which city…) Until American fleet came to force Japan for free trade, Japan was in same position as Korea.

    Japanese infantry, indeed, was a formiddable force in Far East. The basic firearms was one thing… but many of Japanese soldiers had formation of European mdeiveal war. Knights and mass of conscripts folllowing from the back. Samurai knights, considered as among the best infantry found in Far East at that time. Like the Romans, Japanese dominated most of land warfare which nearly destroyed Korea.

    Chinese reinforcement was not too significant. It was Chinese cannons that made a huge difference. Chinese cannons were still more advanced than European cannons at that time, and Koreans began to realize that in terms of artillery, Korea had advantage. Interestingly enough, this is how Prussians defeated French in Franco-Prussian War. French guns had longer range and its reloading speed was shorter than Germans. German, however, had artilleries made of steel. Knowing that Germans could not win with sheer number alone, Germans used superior numbers and greater number of strong artillery to surround the French force and eventually bombard French position until French troops move out… then German infantry numerically overwhelmed the French that ran away from the cover and positions.

    Same concept here. Except the Japanese retreated before such tactic could be fully used.

  65. Two Cents Says:

    Hideyoshi’s invasion of the Korean peninsula in contemporary documents is referred to as “唐入,” meaning “entering China.” He wasn’t interested in Korea. He was interested in becoming the king of the three countries (Japan, China, and India). It was Nobunaga who initially had the aspiration, according to letters sent to the Vatican by a missionary close to Nobunaga.

  66. ponta Says:

    I think Yi Sunshin was a brave guy.
    Likewise Katō Yoshiaki was a brave guy; he fought bravely with Korean troop,
    But I am not brave enough to call Kato a worldly figure.
    The point is why some Koreans want to make Yi Sunshin a world figure.

    My great grandfather was not so lucky. Instead of getting fatal shot, he got shot in the left eye which paralyzed his eyesight as well as face muscle tissues. He was arrested, electrocuted and beating, and died in cell due to lead poisoning. (Back in WWII, the ammunitions were not clean and were often contaminated with harmful substances.

    I am really sorry to hear that. I hope the prosecutor was not one of infamous KoreanProsecution Clerk. who tortured Korean people more cruelly than Japanese boss.

    And about Queen Min… well, mein Gott in himmel… who in the right mind said she should be “mother of Korea”?

    Many young Korean people and Kyopo

    Ah, such shame. I have done some extensive studies and, frankly, I am embarrassed to say that she was a Korean

    You are the first Korean person I’ve ever heard to tell the truth about Min. I am really glad.

  67. tomato Says:

    pekau,

    The internal struggle of Japan after the death of Hideyoshi… so what? Japan decided to retreat… so what? That does not mean that Japan just left for sake of Koreans. If they lose the will to fight war, they retreat. Is that not, to extent, a victory? Furthermore, someone mentioned that Korea is not worth occupying…

    I’m just pointing out your overglorification of Korean history. Hideyoshi’s invasion of Korea was done not by any necessity except that Hideyoshi wanted to prove himself as the strongman in East Aisa. It’s kind of amusing how you try to make sense out of it, but in fact there wasn’t any sense in it at all, like Two Cents puts it out well. The invasion had little impact on Japan, because Japan was strong enough to absorb it (it seems that Korea was not), and of course, the Japanese casualty was minimal at best. Just name any great Daimyos that were lost in the war…Yi Sunshin was killed, but was Shimazu? Kato Kiyomasa? Konishi?. …I don’t see how you don’t get this…I think it’s because you overglorify your so-called great victory.

    You really do seem to lack basic knowledge about Japanese history and development during the ages…you have only the view based on the belief and bias that the Koreans were superior and advanced than Japan until Japan came to administer in 1910. If that’s what you want to believe, that’s OK.

    But it’s true it looks like overglorification, which is usually ridiculous looking from foreigners, all the more when you look at the fact that Korea was never was a worldly power in any respect. Why can’t you guys just be humble? I think it’s OK to brag that Yi Shunshin did a good job, but a worldly renouned general? That’s not true, and you should know it.

  68. pekau Says:

    Heh, I hope that when I used this as title…

    pekau,
    Future IB Revolutionist and eternal fan of Lord High Admiral Yi Sun-sin, the greatest navy admiral in history of mankind

    I was not serious. I know that no man/woman could possibly be considered as the best. There are so many different factors.

    Let me make something clear to you about war, tomato. I like your ideas and your persistence… and I like it! It’s what makes history and debate so fun!

    War is not a chess game. Many leaders do not wish a war, and history already proved that war in long run is disastrous. Look at Napoleon, Hitler, Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan (Check the spelling)… they were brilliant leaders, but they failed. Why? They have to understand that it takes more than grand army to take over the world. That’s why my favorite leaders include people like Bismarck, Nelson, Rommel, etc… and guess who else? Yi Sunshin!

    These leaders were not just conquerors. They knew their strength and their weakness. They knew when to provoke war, and when to prevent it. Bismarck is a perfect example. He struck Austria-Hungary with superior professional Prussian armies which brought overwhelming victory. Right after he got what he wanted, he offered peace with Austria-Hungary. Other great powers did not even had chance to interfere. Bismarck was able to conquer all Germanic areas without risking a costly and hopeless war against Germany’s enemies. Divide and conquer.

    I am not saying Nelson was pathetic and insignificant compared to Yi Sunshin. He was another great leader who knew what he was doing. Instead of having direct attack against Napoleon’s forces, he waited behind the harsh current of English Channel. When Napoleon and much of his invading forces left to suppress Austria-Hungary and Prussia… Nelson struck quickly, and hard. By carefully positioning his ships, distracting the strong spots and advocating weak spots… Nelson broke the central formation of French-Spanish fleet and his famous “Divide and conquer”. Thanks to Britain’s extensive funds and experienced sailors, Britain got stronger, faster and more efficiently working ships. Plus, Britain got better and longer ranged cannons. Though he was killed in the final battle, his brilliance would soon become the pride of emerging British Empire.

    From both of my Western and Eastern sources, it was quite obvious that Japan was not a nation of advancing civilization. Tomato, if I do lack the basic history of Japan… could you give me example and… perhaps reference. Who knows? Maybe all of my references are all wrong. (Highly unlikely, but it’s a possibility”

    Why can’t Koreans be humble about this issue? Simple. Because, as you pointed out tomato, that Korea is not a superpower. We never had great influence over any nation ever since the rise of Sillas… and to be honest, Korea does not have a lot of things that we could be proud of. Our government is still corrupted as ever, and many Koreans are busy surviving. Our educational system is not even funny… (Explains why very few Koreans won Noble Prize) and our passion for foreign goods is destroying our economy. Korea is also experiencing serious language transformation. No brands in Korea are Korean! (If there are some, I never seen it…) Many popular signs and slogans are English, and more people are eager to learn English. Our Korean studies are so basic that our essays and writings are barely above formal essays. The romantism, enlightment, and other Korean value are slowly dying. Korea may have ok standard of living… but Korea is dying. East Sea, which is agreed by UN, Harvard University, and treaties made in WWII clearly agrees that Sea of Japan should be East Sea, which bears Korean sovereignty. But as we all know, over 98% of maps in the world mark East Sea as Sea of Japan. Now, almost everyone acknowledge that Sea of Japan is, according to the name, belongs to Japan.

    But in the early days (From the beginning to the decline of Joseon period) Korea was the bridge of the Far East. Its culture and technology rivaled China, and was beyond compare to Japan. Check when Japan reached Iron Age. Now check Korea’s. I did not say that Japan became more superior in 1910… it was long before that. Our government is corrupted; all the gifted people are in hiding to escape political persecution, and large attention to keep China out… etc.

    Americans can be humble. Canadians can be humble. British can be humble. Well, at least you have enough achievements so that it still looks impressive. Korea has few achievements. How much must we humble? Someone mentioned that the conflict is becoming like a soccer game. Guess what? That’s true. Why do you think Koreans cheer for their soccer team much better than other nations? Koreans see hope that they could become a special nation. Hoping for other nations to say, “Korea? Oh yeah, I know that country. Isn’t that a nation that has good…so on, so on?” When Korea entered the semi-final… you have no idea. Koreans all glued themselves to the TV. I am hard-working student… and yet I missed half of the school in order to watch the Fifa world cup. Yes, it makes more than a headache and annoyance to foreigners, but Koreans see this as patriotism, as nationalism, as a hope of acceptance from other powerful nations, that Korea is a nation that matters, and the fact that Korea belongs to the world.

    Could you understand it? Our cry for the soil that we were born in? Could you really say that we are just simple arrogant Korean bastards? Isn’t fighting for the pride of Korea for more than 5000 years not what we could brag about? Koreans gave everything they got for 5000 years, and it resisted the powerful neighbor’s assimilation. Is that not something worth to talk about? Isn’t that what makes it worth for Koreans to talk about it to foreigners? Isn’t that worth dying for? (Ex. Resistance against Japanese Empire during Second World War)

    But I do agree that Koreans went too far to change whole bunch of facts in wikipedia. That is disgusting.

  69. pekau Says:

    Forgot to say this, since I was bein emotional. War is expensive. Japan would not foolishly declare war against Joseon and China at the same time.

    Check the casualty number again for Japanese. It wasn’t as if Koreans were simple minded apes. We knew how to resist. I am too tired to do that right now. Gotta finish up my Group 4 project…

  70. tomato Says:

    Forgot to say this, since I was bein emotional. War is expensive. Japan would not foolishly declare war against Joseon and China at the same time.

    Well, I think the Japanese historians pretty much agree that Hideyoshi went wacko when he decided to invade Korea. Kind of like Hitler invading Russia for “lebensraum”…plain ol’ crazy. The Japanese warlords went with him because Hideyoshi was too strong to resist or they worshipped him. Curious that Koreans don’t see it as this way (you guys just have to think that the Japanese were somehow desperate for land or something- this “underestimation” of Japan I often see among Koreans seems like a mirror image of the Korean self-overglorification). People do act foolishly. Look how the Japanese Empire collapsed.

    And, pekau, I think if some of you people stop being obsessed with greatness, you will have much better peace of mind and get better sleeps- too much nationalism will poison you, just look at Yugoslavia… When nations start to self-glorify too much, it’s usually a yellow sign… and it does look embarassing when you overdo it, because foreigners quickly realize that it’s plain old bragging…or will be cautious about Nazification.

  71. ponta Says:

    Pekau
    Japan is just an fragile country. And Hidyoshi sucks. Nobunaga sucks!
    Kato sucks! So just forget Japan.

    I think Yi Sun Shin is great, he won when the enemy, realising enormous Chinese reinforcement was coming, was retreating.
    Even when Chinese general agreed to make the truce negotiation with Japan, he kept attacking.
    His tactics is truly praiseworthy.
    Still I am afraid people outside of Korea might not think that he is a worldly figure.

    in the early days (From the beginning to the decline of Joseon period) Korea was the bridge of the Far East. Its culture and technology rivaled China, and was beyond compare to Japan

    Does Korea rival China? Is that why the Chinese and Korean clothes are similar

    Maybe did Chinese people imitate Korea?

  72. tomato Says:

    ponta,

    Reminds me of 夜郎自大.

  73. pekau Says:

    Actually, Yugoslavia did not overglorifty themsleves. The reason was not nationalism that led to the end of Yugoslavia, but the fact that delcine of Yugoslavia was… there was no nationalism. Yugoslavia is made of whole bunch of different people wtih different culture, language and such… that they all wanted independence. Like Austrias-Hungary, it failed because few people wanted Yugoslavia… they wanted their own nation. The Balkan regions is still in chaos due to that.

    And yes. Anything too much or too small is not good. I am merely saying that from Korea’s point of view, You gotta read and understand what I put down before you ask same question over and over again… I did not say that Nelson not good enough to beat Yi Sunshin. It is impossible to see who did better due to so many factors.

    Koreans could argue that Yi Sunshin did better due to the number of ships sank… but that’s not true. Most of the Japanese ships were transporters and supply ships, and while Japanese warships still dwarfed the Korean ships all combined… it may have been different.

    English could say that Nelson’s better because he is well more popular. That’s not true. Accomplishments are often misunderstood as the time passes by. If Nazi Germany won the WWII, I doubt that we would see Hitler as crazy and cruel man. We would view him as liberator, as hero, as the greatest leader the world has ever seen. Winners easily corrupt history, and for this case… it is Western power that won the Cold War.. Western nations are more powerful and influential than Eastern nations. Gotta be careful about opinions.

    Anyways, I know that overglorification (Is that even a word!?) is bad… but doing some would be great for sake of our nation. I did not exaggerate that Yi Sunshin is better by fact. My opinion that Yi Sunshin did more impressive job still stands. This is glorification, not overglorification. At least I reasoned myself with facts on my articles. All you did was argue. Prove it. Don’t manipulate the history to and overglorify Japan just because Japan trades more with Western world than Korea. Now you are not being fair.

    Althougn the factors vary… but look at the ratio! Yi Sunshin’s ship vs. Japanese ship in the last battle only is 13:333. (133 warships, 200 logistical support ships)

    AND WHO WROTE THIS!!?

    “Yi responded powerfully. In October, 1597 (September, according to Chinese Lunar Calendar), Yi lured the Japanese fleet consisting of 333 ships (133 battle ships, 200 logistical support ships) and a crew of 100,000 within the Myongryang Straits and defeated them with only 13 battleships he had. Admiral Yi crushed the Japanese Navy, which lost a staggering amount of at least 120 battleships (31 battleships were completely destroyed and more than 90 were damaged beyond repair). Using his traditional tactics of peppering cannonballs and fire arrows into Japanese ships, Admiral Yi kept the Japanese fleet at a distance giving no chance to board. Thousands of Japanese sailors drowned and many more were killed by Korean arrows. The Japanese general Kurushima Michifusa was inevitably killed by archers who got close enough to his flagship. Admiral Yi’s victory at the Battle of Myeongnyang demonstrated his effectiveness as a strategic commander. Today, the Battle of Myeongnyang is celebrated in Korea as one of Yi’s greatest victories. Legend holds that he used iron chains to hold the Japanese ships back until the tide of the sea turned. He also supposedly used a popular traditional dance on land to distract the Japanese from noticing the iron chain. As the close-packed Japanese got stuck in the narrow straits, the tide eventually turned, sending Japanese ships crashing into one another with no way out. 50 ships did pass the iron chains, but the Japanese commander supposedly said, “What will you do with only 50 ships? The enemy is Yi Sun sin!”

    What the… there was no such thing as battleship at that time!!!?

    And allow me to make this “false knowledge”… many Japanese generals died in the battle. (Especially at sea, for Japan still possessed infantry superiority)

    Firearms were not huge factor. The Portugese sold the outdated firearms that required several minutes to reload. Firearm, like turtle ship, was just a psychological warfare. As many might know, most of the battle formation was to have elites in front, and mass of conscripts behind. Firearms ususally killed many Korean and Chinese elites before actual battle took place… and morals for Korean army scattered. But knowing that Japanese could be defeated (News of Yi Sunshin’s victory in sea was quickly spreaded in Korea) Koreans changed the battle tactic. Elites would be mixed with common soldiers, so that there would be elites to control and maintain positions in close combat.

    And who made this comment that Korea is equal to China? Koreans, how much must you lie to foreigners? China is huge! Korea was a barbaric tribes until China spreaded theri culture. China could have crushed Korea into pieces, and they did often in the late-Joseon period. Don’t mess with China. Even Americans is smart enough to know that.

    Quick note: China did not send a lot of reinforcement. They sent good cannons that was superior to Japanese cannons. China was struggling internal conflicts, and wanted to keep their armies in case if another coup.

  74. PericlesofAthens Says:

    Hi, Eric from the States, college student, history major,

    First off, the bit on Yi Sun-sin in Nelson’s article is somewhat unneccessary and should be minimized (or re-worded). Not because Yi Sun-sin wasn’t a great admiral for his time and nation, but because he doesn’t have much to do with Nelson or even the Napoleonic era (completely different game altogether).

    Second of all, I have to say, I am most impressed with pekau’s extent of knowledge and passion for history. If only there were more men like him in any nation (not just Korea, or Canada now, lol)! I’ve always been a fan of both, Horatio and Sun-sin, but it is quite impressive that Yi lost not one confrontation he was engaged in, despite several circumstances where he was greatly outnumbered. Of course, this had some to do with his tactical genius, and in many circumstances superior cannon-fire range won the day. On the other side, the Japanese relied on close-hand grapple-and-hook, along with close-proximity arquebus rifle fire in mass, which was ineffective when fired out of range.

    One of the most critical points of Yi’s defensive campaign was denying Hideyoshi’s overall forces the essential supply routes for Konishi Yukinaga to advance farther than Pyongyang. Admiral Yi also denied them from establishing secure waterways through the Yellow Sea (eventually to China) with the critical battle of Hansando. In the aftermath of this battle, not only was one of Hideyoshi’s “Seven Spears” Wakizaka Yasuharu forced to retreat (after nearly being killed after being hit by several arrows), but they had lost an estimated 47 out 73 ships, 12 of which were also captured, and had a loss of some 9,000 men (including commanders Wakizaka Sabei, Watanabe Shichi’emon, and Manabe Samanosuke). This was compared to the losses of the Korean side, where reportedly not one ship was lost out of 56 (incredible, but thanks to the crane formation of Yi’s that enveloped and surrounded the Japanese who fell into a trap of a leading ruse), 19 Koreans were dead, and 114 were wounded.

    Although I don’t think Yi belongs in Nelson’s article, people on here have been bashing him a bit unfairly (in my opinion, comparing him to Kim Jong Ill). It doesn’t matter whether he was Korean or not, he should be admired for his brilliance as a commander, much like Nelson.

    My input,
    Eric

  75. “Stop Stealing Our Culture and Calling it Ancient Korean” » Occidentalism Says:

    [...] I would say the most important of the 4 points there is number 3, the one about informing foreigners about the truth of the matter. Koreans are quite aggressive about spreading their point of view everywhere, so if it is not corrected, all these things will come to be popularly thought of as Korean. [...]

  76. pekau Says:

    Wow, it’s been some time since I came back….

    Thanks for comment, Eric. I do wholeheartly agree that we should separate Nelson and Yi-Sunshin issue separately. We are going in circle, people. We are comparing two things that should not be compared. Debating whether Yi-Sunshin is better or Nelson is better is like asking if Spartans were better soldiers than SEAL. These two commanders fought in the different type of battle, in different political background and in different era at that time.

    It pains me to hear that lots of members in Occidentalism are quite biased against Koreans. (I wonder why, really. Maybe I will look into the origin of Occidentalism or something…)There are Muslim extremists in Middle East. There are neo-Nazists in Russia. There are White supremacists in USA. There are Japanese self-glorifying idiots who call themselves historians. Koreans are, just like everyone else, people. We are not designed to be perfect. Instead of arguing pointless argument and blaming who’s responsible, why can’t we just do something about it? Instead of pointing out the errors, find out why people think of this way. Find out why you are right. And when arguing, give the logical reason and apply ref. for those that are in doubt. And for God’s sake, don’t make such generalization to Koreans as a whole!

  77. pekau Says:

    And look at the title of this argument…

    Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson and Koreans in Wikipedia

    You specifically state the British admiral, but the contrast of him is not Yi-Sunshin… it’s the Koreans. This is often found in propaganda, where they find it easy to convince their arguement by displaying two solid difference between good and evil. Why am I not surprised, after reading all the articles?