Occidentalism
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Washington sends message to South Korea

September 14th, 2006 . by Matt

Bush Roh
Fundamental disagreement

The New York Times has an article about the visit of President Roh to Washington. I think the article is designed to send a message to the South Korean establishment.

U.S. to Roll Out Tepid Welcome for President of South Korea

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 — As President Roh Moo-hyun of South Korea prepares to visit President Bush on Thursday morning, the two men have rarely been further apart on the central issue that long ago turned their relationship so frosty.

Mr. Bush is determined to squeeze North Korea with every financial sanction possible until it gives up its nuclear capacity and other illicit activities, or, some believe, until it collapses. Mr. Roh insists the only course is to coax the country out of its isolation.

In the weeks leading to the visit here, Mr. Bush’s aides have been using a new United Nations Security Council resolution, passed after North Korea’s missile tests in July, to prepare a list of banks it can press to cut ties with North Korea.

Mr. Roh has been playing down the missile launching as a meaningless, attention-grabbing temper tantrum by the North Koreans, and he has resumed South Korean aid and investment to the country, in hopes of preventing what his country fears would turn into collapse or confrontation.

This is very plain talking from the New York Times. I am no foreign policy analyst, but this has to be considered an unofficial message to the South Koreans, along with a message to the American people about a possible foreign policy change in regards to South Korea. But what comes next is the sharpest part of the message.

In past meetings, Mr. Bush has done his best to paper over the differences. But his aides acknowledge that the gap has grown so much in recent months — “as wide as the Sea of Japan” one senior official said Wednesday — that it will be almost impossible to hide.

The official quoted by the New York Times surely knows about South Korea’s policy concerning the naming of the Sea of Japan. Using the ‘Sea of Japan’ analogy is a rather blunt way of expressing Washington’s displeasure about President Roh, his government’s policies, and anti-Americanism in South Korea. The ‘Sea of Japan’ barb is followed by a negative comparison to Japan and Prime Minister Koizumi.

Mr. Roh will receive treatment that contrasts sharply with the warm embrace extended in June to Japan’s prime minister, Junichiro Koizumi. Mr. Koizumi got long meetings, a glittering dinner and a trip to Graceland; Mr. Roh, leader of the other major United States ally in Asia, is getting an hour in the Oval Office and a quick lunch.

Foreign policy analysts in South Korea will be spending time today trying to interpret the meaning of this article, but to me the meaning of this message from the American establishment to the South Korean establishment is clear. South Korea must choose sides.


62 Responses to “Washington sends message to South Korea”

  1. comment number 1 by: YoungRocco

    Matt:

    You’ve insulted me deeply.

    I thought you would do me the pleasure of backing up your claims, but instead, you choose to waste my time and energy by coming at me with pathetically weak arguments.

    Nevertheless, they must be addressed.

    Take this nonsense for example:

    Japan fought a war in which Korea gained full independence from China

    Matt, after the Treaty of Shimonoseki, Korea became a protectorate of Japan. A country that is a protectorate is not a fully independent nation.

    Protectorate: 1. the relation of a strong state toward a weaker state or territory that it protects and partly controls.

    So Korea did not gain full independence from Japan after the Sino-Japanese war.

    (Shakes head) Let’s continue.

    At first Korea has sided with China but after Japanese troops came, Korea had sided with Japan (or was ‘forced’ to – Korea could have declared war on Japan if they had desired, but did not

    Matt, this is why I said you have a gift for spin. What is this “forced” nonsense you claim? Japanese troops(2,800 of them) came into Korea(without approval by Queen Min, I might add), came into Seoul, disbanded the government and installed a new pro-japanese government into Korea, surrounded Gyeongbokgung, and, literally at gunpoint, forced the emperor to allow Japan to fight China. Matt, this is not known as “force” but is known as force.

    (Note:And did you know that coerced/forced treaties are considered illegal according to international law?)

    Matt, the only major change in policy you can cite as pro-japanese is one done at gunpoint…(shakes head)

    So you see, Matt. Even the facts you claim are completely disingenuous

    Elements in the Korean government (Queen Min and King Kojong) tried to form alliances with Russia, setting up the stage for the Russo-Japanese war in 1904

    This is what I’m talking about, Matt. You fail to specify any of these alleged “alliances.” What “alliances” are you speaking of? Military alliances? Trade alliances? Matt, for Korea to trade with Russia, China and Japan does not mean that Korea is shifting allegiances. Matt, I went over this with you in my last post. You talk about “shifting alliances” when Queen Min’s foreign policy was consistent as a whole: She wanted to expel Japanese influence from Korea.

    I’ve backup my claims with facts and references.

    You attempt to back yours with rhetorical devices.

    YoungRocco

    P.S. Matt, next time you make a historical argument, please supply references. References tend to firm up your argument.

    Matt:

    I do not think I will.

    I thought as much.

    I notice how when you are wrong you simply stop talking about it and move on to the next issue as if nothing happened, so I feel my replies to you are essentially wasted.

    Sure. More empty rhetoric.

    Have a fantastic day.

  2. comment number 2 by: pacifist

    YoungRocco,

    Your understanding of Shimonoseki treaty is very poor.

    Do you know about 迎恩門 that was erected to welcome Chinese envoys? Korean kings had to keep their head low before the gate when the envoys came to Korea.
    http://f48.aaa.livedoor.jp/~adsawada/siryou/060/resi045.html

    Do you know when this gate was destroyed?
    It was after the Shimonoseki treaty. People of Korea were liberated after hundreds of Chinese domination after the treaty.

    Japanese government wanted Korea to be independent then but, as Matt already mentioned, there were various factions in the Korea and they were not united, some seeked help from China while some asked help from Russia…if they strongly wanted to be independent, they should have learned how to govern their own country.

    But unfortunately they had no idea to run their own country, only to ask help from big powers. So Japan had to block super powers, because if Russia or China took over Korea and Japan had to face them at Busan it would be a nightmere to Japan.

    Think it over again, YoungRocco, if Japan hadn’t defeat China Korea was still a tributary to China and 迎恩門 was still be there. Do you think it was better?

  3. comment number 3 by: Matt

    Matt, after the Treaty of Shimonoseki, Korea became a protectorate of Japan. A country that is a protectorate is not a fully independent nation.

    False. I like you YoungRocco, so I am going to spend some time educating you.

    The treaty of Shimonoseki was 10 years before Korea became a protectorate (protectorate is 1905, the treaty of Shimonoseki is 1895), and is nothing to do with Korea becoming a protectorate. The result was that China was forced to recognise Korea as an independent state, and give up its status as Korea’s suzerain state. Korea became an independent state for the first time in more than 1000 years.

    Matt, this is why I said you have a gift for spin. What is this “forced” nonsense you claim? Japanese troops(2,800 of them) came into Korea(without approval by Queen Min, I might add), came into Seoul, disbanded the government and installed a new pro-japanese government into Korea, surrounded Gyeongbokgung, and, literally at gunpoint, forced the emperor to allow Japan to fight China. Matt, this is not known as “force” but is known as force.

    YoungRocco, YoungRocco, this is so wrong I wonder where I should start. Have you ever heard of a declaration of war? How can you blame the Japanese for Korea not having the courage to declare it? The small number of Japanese soldiers were hardly enough to occupy Korea. Also, the Korea was a vassal state of China, and Japan was at war with China. Why on earth should the Japanese not try to change the regime of the vassal state of the country they are at war with? The Korean court could have fled Seoul, declared war on the Japanese, and fought on the side of the Chinese if they had wanted to. Instead they remained in Seoul and decided to deal with the Japanese, and be disloyal to their Chinese masters. Korea had a lot of options, and it made its choice.

    (Note:And did you know that coerced/forced treaties are considered illegal according to international law?)

    Incorrect. A treaty signed with a gun to the head of an ambassador is invalid, not state to state coercion. Many treatys and agreements are signed with the threat of some consequence, inlcuding all instruments of surrender.

    Glad I have been able to clear up some of your erroneous beliefs. No need to thank me. Have a great night!

  4. comment number 4 by: pacifist

    correction (sorry) :

    People of Korea were liberated after hundreds of Chinese domination after the treaty.

    SHOULD BE:

    People of Korea were liberated after hundreds of years of Chinese domination after the treaty.

  5. comment number 5 by: YoungRocco

    Pacifist:

    Thanks for your post.

    Let’s get to work.

    Pacifist:

    Do you know when this gate was destroyed?
    It was after the Shimonoseki treaty. People of Korea were liberated after hundreds of Chinese domination after the treaty.

    Look at it this way, if Korea was fully independent, why could the Japanese kill Queen Min and get away with it?

    Korean people were liberated on paper only. After the first Sino-Japanese War, Japan stationed troops in Seoul, and filled the Korean legislative body with its own supporters. In addition, soldiers were regularly stationed around the King’s palace. The Japanese were so belligerent that the King felt compelled to take up residence at the Russian embassy.

    Revise your argument.

  6. comment number 6 by: tomato

    Young Rocco

    Revise your argument

    Why don’t you revise yours? Korea was a vassal state of China and there can be no doubt about it. Don’t overwhelm yourself with Korean pride and change interpretation of history as it best suits you.

    You should stop your rudeness, unless you want to prove that your people act like you do.

  7. comment number 7 by: YoungRocco

    Matt:

    Thanks for your post.

    And now, let’s get to the truth.

    The treaty of Shimonoseki was 10 years before Korea became a protectorate (protectorate is 1905, the treaty of Shimonoseki is 1895)

    1.Alas, my history was a little off. As soon as I typed my response to you I thought, wait a minute…oh no! So yes, protectorate status officially came 10 years after the treaty of Shimonoseki.

    However, you are again being disingenuous when you say that Korea became fully independent after the Sino-Japanese War.

    Matt, you’re not fooling anyone here. Do you really expect people to believe that Japan fought a war just to be nice to Korea?

    Koreans were liberated on paper only. Even before the first Sino-Japanese War, Japan stationed troops in Seoul, and filled the Korean legislative body with its own supporters. In addition, Japanese soldiers were regularly stationed around the King’s palace. The Japanese were so belligerent that the King felt compelled to take up residence at the Russian embassy. Japan essentially controlled Korean affairs after the expulsion China.

    Matt, you need to brush up on your historical texts.

    2.Albert Einstein once said that it is important to never stop questioning. You’ve obviously taken that phrase to heart. In your second paragraph you ask three questions. I am glad that you have, in this post, asked me so many questions and I will answer them presently. However, Matt, simply asking questions is no suitable substitute for research and or references.

    If you claim that Queen Min switched sides, you must validate your claim by citing instances in which she switched sides. You must then connect the instances in which she switched sides with a consequence that resulted in a gain in Japanese influence in Korea. You, unfortunately, fail to do follow either one of these procedures.

    Instead, you choose to ask a series of subtle, but nonetheless disingenuous questions…

    For example, If I claimed that Korea has always been an independent state, the best way to prove that is to cite a source–primary or secondary–that supports my idea. If someone disagrees with that idea it would be childish and absurd for me to ask, “Well, If Korea was not independent, how come it had its own King?”

    Similarly, If I claim that North Korea is a democracy, I would be obliged to first define democracy and then to show what traits North Korea has that satisfy the definition of democracy. If someone disagrees, it would, again, be foolish to then ask, “Well, if it isn’t a democracy, How come its official name is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea?

    To a person ignorant of history and politics, the above questions would seem a valid way to dispute a claim. However, to anyone who knows about politics and history, the above questions immediately stand out as red herrings; having a king is not the sole factor deciding whether a country is independent or not. Just as being labelled Democratic, does not make a country democratic.

    In relation, to your question, Matt. I’ll simply answer with a logical rebuttal: Declaring war is not the only means of resisting foreign transgression. Forming alliances, sabotage and diplomacy in the international arena are also common ways of resisting foreign intrusion.

    Now, Matt, I shall address your questions…

    YoungRocco, YoungRocco, this is so wrong I wonder where I should start. Have you ever heard of a declaration of war?

    Yes, I have heard of a declaration of war, Matt.

    The small number of Japanese soldiers were hardly enough to occupy Korea

    Yes, but 2800 enemy soldiers is more than enough to occupy Seoul, Matt. . See, Matt, this is where a knowledge of history is crucial to making an argument. Now, allow me to do you the favor of providing you with historical knowledge:

    1. In 1885 Japan and China signed the treaty of Tientsin. This treaty required that China and Japan should:

    1. pull their expeditionary forces out of Korea simultaneously;
    2. not send military instructors for the training of the Korean army; and
    3. notify the other side beforehand should one decide to send troops to
    Korea.

    2. At the outbreak of the 1895 Tonghak rebellion, Korea’s monarch called on the Chinese emperor to quell the rebellion. China agreed and, as per the articles of the Tientsin treaty, notified the Japanese that they would send troops into Korea.

    3. Japan, fearful that it would lose its rapidly diminishing foothold in Korea, sends and expeditionary force into Korea, supposedly on the pretext of also helping to suppress the rebellion. Instead of heading to suppress the rebellion, the Japanese head to Seoul and capture the city. Whilst in the city, the Japanese expel the Queen Min supporters and instead fill the Korean government with Japanese sympathizers.

    (This is where your judgment regarding Queen Min switching sides again becomes faulty. Japan had to expel her supporters from Korea’s government before they could even hope to control it. As I’ve clearly demonstrated, Matt, Queen Min wanted to steadily diminish Japanese influence in Korea’s affairs.)

    4. China declares the Japanese appointed Korean government as invalid.

    5. Sino-Japanese War begins.

    (Now, Matt, this is where your question regarding why Korea did not declare war against China is demonstrated as disingenuous. When Japan first sent troops into Korea, it was not immediately clear that they would declare war on China. Also, it was hoped for and expected that China would defeat the Japanese in the event of war.)

    Incorrect. A treaty signed with a gun to the head of an ambassador is invalid, not state to state coercion.

    Matt, just where do you get your ideas? Let me give you a couple references that will clear up the many misconceptions under which you seem to be laboring:

    Articles 46-53 of the Vienna Convention set out the only ways that treaties can be invalidated–considered unenforceable and void under international law. A treaty will be invalidated due to either the circumstances by which a state party joined the treaty, or due to the content of the treaty itself. Invalidation is separate from withdrawal, suspension, or termination (addressed below), which all involve an alteration in the consent of the parties of a previously valid treaty rather than the invalidation of that consent in the first place.

    A state’s consent may be invalidated if there was an erroneous understanding of a fact or situation at the time of conclusion, which formed the “essential basis” of the state’s consent. Consent will not be invalidated if the misunderstanding was due to the state’s own conduct, or if the truth should have been evident.

    Consent will also be invalidated if it was induced by the fraudulent conduct of another party, or by the direct or indirect “corruption” of its representative by another party to the treaty. Coercion of either a representative, or the state itself through the threat or use of force, if used to obtain the consent of that state to a treaty, will invalidate that consent.

    Now, Matt, look at articles 51 and 52 of the treaty itself:

    Article 51
    Coercion of a representative of a State

    The expression of a State’s consent to be bound by a treaty which has been procured by the coercion of its representative through acts or threats directed against him shall be without any legal effect.

    Article 52
    Coercion of a State by the threat or use of force

    A treaty is void if its conclusion has been procured by the threat or use of force in violation of the principles of international law embodied in the Charter of the United Nations.

    See, Matt. This is why some people back their claims with evidence and references. As you can see, not only is coercion of a representative defined as violating international law(article 51), but so is coercion of the state itself.(Article 52)

    Matt, I like the fact that you ask me for more information, but simply asking me questions is not enough. Back up your claims with logical arguments and facts. Present an idea. Demonstrate a trend.

    Matt, I really like you.

    But you have a lot of homework to do.

    But don’t worry. I’ll be here to help you every step of the way.

  8. comment number 8 by: ponta

    Youngrocco.
    Well an interesting discussion.
    But first let me point out your habit: you tend to focus on things other than than the main topic. Remeber the topic of the thread?
    Anyway

    Matt,Do you really expect people to believe that Japan fought a war just to be nice to Korea?

    Who said that Japan fought to be nice to Korea? Don’t change the focus. Japan fought the war, as a result, Korea won the independence from China.

    Article 1

    China recognises definitively the full and complete independence and autonomy of Korea, and, in consequence, the payment of tribute and the performance of ceremonies and formalities by Korea to China, in derogation of such independence and autonomy, shall wholly cease for the future./Shimonoseki treaty

    Youngrocco wrote

    Koreans were liberated on paper only.

    I agree in the sense that Korea could not stand on its own. and many people and representative of nations in those days seems to agree.

    But Korea itself was helpless to enforce the treaty, and it was out of the question to suppose that any other nation, with no interests of its own at stake, would do for the Koreans what they were utterly unable to do for themselves .. .Korea has shown its utter inability to stand by itself.(Roosevelt)

    St. Petersburg and Tokyo reached a number of compromises, agreeing that Korea was “incapable of being independent” and establishing a “joint co-protectorate over Korea.”—St. Petersburg(Russia)

    Failed states, corrupt and plagued by domestic violence as they are, become a threat to everyone,

    “Left to themselves the Koreans would rot, which would affect not Korea alone but the whole world…No nation, however insignificant, however mean its contribution to mankind, can be allowed to fall into neglect and decay.” (Drake 148)Drake, H. B. 1930. Korea of the Japanese. London, New York,, John Lane; Dodd Mead and company

    Youngrocco wrote

    The Japanese were so belligerent that the King felt compelled to take up residence at the Russian embassy.

    Yes, and Korean people were angry, weren’t they? :Why the hell our leader is doing hiding at the Russian legation? And that is why King finally went out of the lagation. Am I correct?

    If you claim that Queen Min switched sides, you must validate your claim by citing instances in which she switched sides

    Matt wrote

    .At first Korea has sided with China but after Japanese troops came, Korea had sided with Japan (or was ‘forced’ to – Korea could have declared war on Japan if they had desired, but did not). Elements in the Korean government (Queen Min and King Kojong) tried to form alliances with Russia, setting up the stage for the Russo-Japanese war in 1904

    I think this is sufficient, but for your reference, I copied the following from the book.( .Unfortunately I have no OCR soft If you have any doubt, please check it in the library nearby.

    On July 23, 1882, the rioter went on a rampage, killing all Japanese in their path and unsuccessfully trying to murder their icon fro corruption, Queen Min…….Queen Min was thought to be dead and Grand Prince hungson relished the funeral preparation….Among Grand Prince Hungson’s first act was a petition to China seeking its sanction for the change in regime……Grand Prince Hungson’s coup detat posed three problem for the Chinese. It had overthrown the pro Chinese MIn….Once Chinese troops entered Seoul , Wu, Man and Ding invited Grand Prince Hungson to call on them. When he did they read him the riot act, Ma accused him of action against Chinese emperor by unseating an duly invested king. “You sin is unpardonable….Li hongzhang later wrote. “Our country regarded Korea as part of the empire and dispatched troops, We arrested the evil ringleader, the Taewongun[Grand Prince Hungson] and detained him…..The Korean masses were awed. Now the entire world knows that Korean is our dependency……The incarceration of Grand Prince Hungson in China allowed the Min clan to become more firmly entrenched in power than ever….The Min clan became effusively pro-Chinese. In 1882, Korea signed a commercial treaty granting China exclusive economic privileges that would enable it to dominate Korean trade..page 54)

    The Min clan promptly reclaimed power, Queen Min rapidly eliminated Japanese sympathizers from the government and , Just as Pak had been doing, sought Russian intercession. page316

    YoungRocco if this is not sufficient instance, then you should show us the examples citing MIn had been consistent in policy.

    Youngrocco wrote

    2. At the outbreak of the 1895 Tonghak rebellion, Korea’s monarch called on the Chinese emperor to quell the rebellion. China agreed and, as per the articles of the Tientsin treaty, notified the Japanese that they would send troops into Korea.

    The Tientsin treaty is an agreement between China and Japan to the effect that the both nation notify each other when the troop were sent to Seoul.

    1885年、清国と日本が結んだ条約

    甲申事変後の1885年4月に清と日本の間に結ばれた条約。この条約によって、日清両国の漢城(ソウル)からの即時撤退、将来朝鮮に出兵する場合の相互通知等が約された。wiki

    ,
    Japan notified its intention to send troops to Seoul to protect its legation, consulates and residents. Li responded by repeating the Qing government’s advice; Japan should send only a small number of troops, keep them out of the interior and take precautions to avoid incidents between Chinese and Japanese troops. At Minister Mutsu’s direction, Komura Jutaro gave written notice to the president and members of the Zongli Yamen in Beijing.

    BTW

    In 1894, the Second Tonghak War erupted and King Kojong asked Japan and China for troops to quell the peasant rebels. The Japanese came in force and put down the rebellion, but they stayed on. Japan backed Daewongun and other pro-Japanese Koreans. Min countered the Japanese move by empowering Russians and pro-Russian KoreaA Brief History of the US-Korea Relations Prior to 1945

    Youngrocco wrote

    Now, Matt, look at articles 51 and 52 of the treaty itself:

    Article 51
    Coercion of a representative of a State

    The expression of a State’s consent to be bound by a treaty which has been procured by the coercion of its representative through acts or threats directed against him shall be without any legal effect.

    Read it carefully, it is about coercion of a representative of a State.
    As far as I know there is no evidence the king was coerced. Can you cite the
    document that he was coerced?

    I know there are a lot of debates about it, but considering the cases of other colonized nations, at least a case can be made that it was valid.

    By the way,Kimsoft confirms,

    For example, King Kojong donned Russian, German, Japanese, and American military uniforms seeking protection from Russian Tzars, German Keisers, Japanese Emperors, and American Presidents, he went from one protector to another like a chameleon changing its color with the prevailing wind.

    Kimsoft’s argument is that Korea donned this or that country and failed, but
    interestingly the conclusion is that Roh is correct , in that he stands firm…..firm against USA.
    The reader might have a impression youngrocco’s conclusion is close to Kimsoft’s.

    .

  9. comment number 9 by: YoungRocco

    Ponta:

    Wow, thanks for the links and book citations!

  10. comment number 10 by: tomato

    Wow, thanks for the links and book citations!

    Homework:

    Just read them.

  11. comment number 11 by: YoungRocco

    Ponta:

    Thanks for your posts.

    And now, for a reposte:

    Ponta:

    Remeber the topic of the thread?

    Yes, I most certainly do, Ponta.

    Who said that Japan fought to be nice to Korea? Don’t change the focus. Japan fought the war, as a result, Korea won the independence from China.

    Your use of the term “independence” is misleading. Korea was not a colony of China.

    China had influence over Korea’s foreign affairs, but if you contrast Korea under Chinese with Korea under Japanese influence, you’ll find that by and large Japanese influence was far worse. Moreover, whereas China did not regularly station troops in Korea, Japan did.

    The simple fact of the matter is that Korea did not become “independent.” after the Sino-Japanese War. Japanese troops overstayed their invitation, murdered Korea’s Queen and used coercion and force to alter Korea’s government.

    Ponta:

    But Korea itself was helpless to enforce the treaty, and it was out of the question to suppose that any other nation, with no interests of its own at stake, would do for the Koreans what they were utterly unable to do for themselves .. .Korea has shown its utter inability to stand by itself.(Roosevelt

    The treaty you cite here is the infamous Taft-Katsura agreement. A secret memorandum which essentially traded non-interference in spheres of influence: Japan could do as it pleased in Korea and the U.S. could do as it pleased in the Phillipines.

    You wound your own argument in citing this treaty, Ponta. First, the parties involved are not impartial. The agreement is essentially a geopolitical business deal not an academic study. Second, the agreement was kept secret. Why? Simple, because the Taft-Katsura agreement violated the spirit of the treaty of Chemulpo between Korea and the United States.

    The document you cite, is in fact, a classic example of the United States “switching sides.”

    St. Petersburg and Tokyo reached a number of compromises, agreeing that Korea was “incapable of being independent” and establishing a “joint co-protectorate over Korea.”—St. Petersburg(Russia)

    The quote has the same problems as the one above. The parties discussed in this quote are not so much interested in Korean independence, so much as they are interested in gaining colonies.

    Ponta:

    Failed states, corrupt and plagued by domestic violence as they are, become a threat to everyone,

    “Left to themselves the Koreans would rot, which would affect not Korea alone but the whole world…No nation, however insignificant, however mean its contribution to mankind, can be allowed to fall into neglect and decay.” (Drake 148)Drake, H. B. 1930. Korea of the Japanese. London, New York,, John Lane; Dodd Mead and company

    Well, we can look at the history books to determine who was a greater threat to the world, Korea or Japan. Japan went to war with Brittain, the U.S., China, and Russia, and allied itself with Hitler.

    I think its obvious which country was the greater threat.

    As to your second quote, you have to keep in mind that Korea was modernizing extremely rapidly in the 19th century. Under Queen Min’s control, Korea sent scholars to Europe and America, underwent military reforms, brought electricity to parts of Seoul and had railroad constructed. Korea was not as backward as those who like to rationalize Japanese agression will claim.

    YoungRocco if this is not sufficient instance, then you should show us the examples citing MIn had been consistent in policy.

    I’ve already done so. In my posts to Matt I had stated that one of Queen Min’s major policy goals was driving out Japanese influence. In order to more effectively do so, she made relationships with other regional powers.

    Given Joseon’s relationship with the Qin dynasty, it was natural for her to work with China first to limit Japanese influence. After the Sino-Japanese War reduced Chinese influence in Korea, she worked with Russia to limit Japanese influence in Korea. When resisting an enemy, it is common to gain as many close friends as possible. This is simply politics, Ponta.

    Young Rocco:

    [Under the treaty of Ganghwa] Various ports were forced open to Japanese trade, with the rights for the Japanese to buy land within designated areas. Min realized that relations must be developed with other powerful nations to counter the Japanese.

    Young Rocco:

    The Japanese, Emperor Meiji in particular, viewed her as an obstacle. However, efforts to neutralize her or to remove her from Korea’s government continuously failed due to Emperor Gojong’s devotion. The Japanese resorted to sending ambassadors to Korea’s royal court, but such efforts were eventually repelled, again by Empress Myeoung-Song

    The consistency is quite clear. Queen Min had to expel the Japanese from Korea, and given what happened during the colonial era, it’s pretty clear that Queen Min was on to something.

    The take home points are:

    1. Queen Min’s policies were aimed at limiting Japanese influence in
    Korea.
    2. In order to limit Japan’s influence, she advocated closer ties between
    Korea, Russia, China and the United States.
    2b. Forging closer ties with these powers is not “swithcing sides” any more
    so than the coalition of the willing in Iraq means that the U.S. switching
    sides.

    Let’s continue this riveting discussion:

    In 1894, the Second Tonghak War erupted and King Kojong asked Japan and China for troops to quell the peasant rebels. The Japanese came in force and put down the rebellion, but they stayed on. Japan backed Daewongun and other pro-Japanese Koreans. Min countered the Japanese move by empowering Russians and pro-Russian KoreaA Brief History of the US-Korea Relations Prior to 1945

    The key term here is, “but they stayed on.” Indeed, they did stay on-fifty years past their term.

    Japan notified its intention to send troops to Seoul to protect its legation, consulates and residents

    And the road to a very bad place is paved with intentions isn’t it? This notification was a falsehood. Japan said its aim was to protect its legation, consulate and residents, when in actuality its aim was to engage in war with China and force changes in the Korean government.

    Read it carefully, it is about coercion of a representative of a State

    Ponta, I Included article 52 in my previous post to you. Article 52 mentions coerction of the state itself.

    As far as I know there is no evidence the king was coerced

    Well, Ponta with a few hundred Japanese soldiers surrounding Gyeonbokgung, I think its pretty easy to see that the King was coerced.

    More over, when Japan came into Seoul they dissolved the government and instituted pro-japanese sympathizers:

    The Japanese force subsequently seized the emperor, occupied the Royal Palace in Seoul by 8 June 1894, and replaced the existing government with the members from the pro-Japanese faction. The new Korean government then granted Japan the right to expel the Chinese troops. The legitimacy of the new government was rejected by China, and the stage was thus set for conflict.

    There you have it, Ponta. Coercion.

    Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Sino-Japanese_War

    By the way,Kimsoft confirms

    Kimsoft uses such lofty academic terms as “Korean Uncle Toms” and refers to modern Japanese polticians as “crafty samurais.” Kimsoft is an opinion editorial website, Ponta. You can’t rely on it as a reference.

    I look forward to your next post, Ponta.

  12. comment number 12 by: ponta

    YoungRocco
    Thanks
    YoungRocco wrote

    Remember the topic of the thread?

    Yes, I most certainly do, Ponta.

    Matt wrote

    The last time I looked, Korea was controlled by Japan for 36 years, and was given independence by the United States. Korea ended up in that position because it kept on changing allegiances under the rule of King Kojong and Queen min.

    YoungRocco wrote

    In order to more effectively do so, she made relationships with other regional powers.

    Given Joseon’s relationship with the Qin dynasty, it was natural for her to work with China first to limit Japanese influence. After the Sino-Japanese War reduced Chinese influence in Korea, she worked with Russia to limit Japanese influence in Korea. When resisting an enemy, it is common to gain as many close friends as possible.

    . In order to limit Japan’s influence, she advocated closer ties between
    Korea, Russia, China and the United States

    As a result, as Matt said, Korea ended up in the position where she was controlled by Japan. So, youngRocco ends up agreeing with Matt finally unless he does not approve Korea ended up in the position where she was controlled by Japan.
    But YoungRocco wrote

    China had influence over Korea’s foreign affairs, but if you contrast Korea under Chinese with Korea under Japanese influence, you’ll find that by and large Japanese influence was far worse

    So YoungRocco admits Korea was controlled by Japan.
    Hence, changing opinion from this to that, YoungRocco finally agreed with Matt.
    Period.

    ……………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Your use of the term “independence” is misleading.

    It is not misleading at all, it was the word used in the treaty.

    you’ll find that by and large Japanese influence was far worse

    I guess It really depends on how you look at it.
    Korea’s population did not increase under China’s control.
    Its population was doubled under Japanese rule.
    And you saw the citation in which Chinese boss treated Korean father of the
    King. Do you prefer Korea King kowtowing Chinese to being treated as royalty?Do you like to see Korean woman sent to Chinese as a slave ?

    The simple fact of the matter is that Korea did not become “independent.”

    As I told you I agree. Korea could not stand on its own. Japan wished she could because as a buffer state.that would be much cheaper for Japan

    Ponta. First, the parties involved are not impartial. The agreement is essentially a geopolitical business deal not an academic study. Second, the agreement was kept secret. Why? Simple, because the Taft-Katsura agreement violated the spirit of the treaty of Chemulpo between Korea and the United States.

    Still, the fact remains that other nations looked at Korea as incapable of independence. Even Korean revolutionary forces look at it that way, that is why they asked Japan to annex.

    you have to keep in mind that Korea was modernizing extremely rapidly in the 19th century.

    It seems to be only Korean scholar that believe it.

    The author (of Offspring of Empire argues, that Japanese “(c)olonialism…for better or worse…was the catalyst and cradle of industrial development in Korea…”. Using the example of two brothers, Kim Songsu and Kim Yonsu, Eckart reveals a rough portrait of middle-class life in pre-and-Occupation-era Korea. Wading through economic statistics, newspaper clippings, boardroom minutes, and interviews, the author also contends against nationalistic, whether South Korean (“sprouts theory”) or North Korean, theories of Korean development

    ( offspring of the empire)
    YoungRocco wrote

    Under Queen Min’s control, Korea sent scholars to Europe and America, underwent military reforms, brought electricity to parts of Seoul and had railroad constructed. Korea was not as backward as those who like to rationalize Japanese agression will claim.

    Bruce coming has a different perspective..

    here was, for Angus Hamilton, no question of the superiority of Korean living conditions, both urban and rural, to those of China, if not Japan. “Seoul,” he wrote, “was the first city in East Asia to have electricity, trolley cars, water, telephone, and telegraph systems all at the same time.” Most of these systems were installed and run by Americans. The Seoul Electric Light Company, the Seoul Electric Trolley Company, the Seoul Fresh Spring Water Company, were all American firms. At the turn of the century Korean imports from the U.S. included Standard Oil Company kerosene, Richmond Gem cigarettes, California fruit and wine, Eagle Brand milk, Armour canned meats, Crosse and Blackwell canned foods, and so on. Hamilton concluded that the period since the opening of the country in the 1870s had afforded Koreans countless opportunities to select for themselves such institutions as may be calculated to promote their own welfare. This is powerful evidence supporting the Korean claim that their route to modernity was not facilitated by Japan, but derailed and hijacked. Still, note the indexes that the American Hamilton chooses to highlight: electricity, telephones, trolleys, schools, consumption of American exports, and cleanliness. If we find that Japan brought similar facilities to Seoul and Taipei, do we place them on the ledger of colonialism or modernization? The Korean answer is colonialism; the Japanese and Taiwanese answer is modernization. Bruce Cumings

    I think its pretty easy to see that the King was coerced.

    It is not pretty easy at all. With a strong US base in Korea, Korea president still has a free will.

    Kimsoft uses such lofty academic terms as “Korean Uncle Toms” and refers to modern Japanese polticians as “crafty samurais.” Kimsoft is an opinion editorial website, Ponta. You can’t rely on it as a reference.

    Kimsoft argues with evidence though I disagree with the conclusion. but unreliable or not, its conclusion is similar to yours.

    Anyway I am glad you agreed with Matt