Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Like a good neighbor...

Reuters has an article on some South Koreans thinking twice about their financial outpouring of support for Japan after Tokyo pushed its claim to Tokto (Takeshima in Japan) yet again:
At first, Korean pop singer Kim Jang-hoon, dubbed "the angel of donation" for his habit of donating many of his concert proceeds to the poor and campaigns to promote his country, asked his fans to put aside their decades-old animosity toward Japan over Dokdo in the wake of the 9.0 March 11 disaster that has left nearly 28,000 dead or missing.

Many ordinary South Koreans responded generously, and a dozen K-pop stars donated more than $5 million.

But the mood soon darkened after a Japanese education panel authorised the publication of school textbooks that assert Japan's claims to the islets, which act as a stark reminder of Japan's brutal colonial rule over Korea from 1910-1945.

For many, this meant all donations were off.
Yeah, I agree that Tokyo really should have just let it go, at least this once, but I think that when it comes to responses like this...
A Seoul district office that raised about $10,000 for Japanese disaster relief changed its mind and sent most of the funds to a civic group promoting Korea's claims to the islets, which are also a symbol of South Korea standing up to its neighbour.

"I asked myself, why did Japan do this at this tragic moment. We had to discuss what to do next with this fund," said Ra Tae-sung, an official at the office in southwestern Seoul.
... I'd like to point out to whatever ku office that was, that the people in Japan who are suffering and in need of help from South Korea and other countries are entirely different from the right-wing politicians who feel obliged to keep bringing up Tokyo's historically questionable and currently unenforceable claim to the Tokto Islets and the seas surrounding them.


  1. Tenderness behind their back are ugly
    It is only South Korean that changes the pretext of the collected donation in the world.
    enen chinese never think of that...


  2. Yeah, well, hoihoi, this is only one fraction of the group overall. Lots of Koreans donated money, lots saw a need for South Korea to send help in the form of rescuers, goods, food, and money, and lots saw this as a chance for Japan and Korea to move forward.

    And while I think the reaction described above is obnoxious, I think the thing they are reacting to on the official Japanese side is also obnoxious.


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