Below is a translation of The 4th column: “Seeking Truth Based Solely on Facts (実事求是),” by Prof. Shimojo Masao
"Errors in Educational Video Produced by the Northeast Asian History Foundation (東北アジア歴史財団)."
The Northeast Asian History Foundation of Korea has produced an educational video that was made public on January 18, 2008. The video deals with the Takeshima (Dokdo) issue, and includes interviews with three specialists: Hong (洪) Song-kun, Naito Seichu(内藤正中) and Kim Byeong-yeol (金柄烈). The problem with the video is that no evidence was shown to prove that Takeshima (Dokdo) was Korean territory, and their arguments include errors.
The first speaker, Hong (洪) Song-kun, mentioned a Japanese document entitled, “元禄九丙子年朝鮮舟着岸一巻之覚書 (Memorandum on the visit of a Korean ship in the 9th year of Genroku)" and claimed that it was proof that Takeshima (Dokdo) was Korean territory. He claimed it was a report on the investigation on Ahn Yong-bok and said, “It clearly said that Dokdo belonged to Gangwondo (江原道).” However, if you read the “元禄九丙子年朝鮮舟着岸一巻之覚書,” you realize that it was not a report on the investigation, but only a transcript of Ahn Yong-bok's testimony, where Ahn said, “Japan's Matsushima is Jasando (子山嶋) and is part of Ganwon Province (江原道). Japan did not admit Takeshima (Dokdo) was Korean territory. In fact, the Tottori clan did not take him seriously and deported him from Karo-nada (Sea of Karo). In the light of these facts, it is clear that Hong’s theory was wrong.
The reason Koreans today applause Ahn Yong-bok’s activities is because the testimony Ahn gave to Korean officials was recorded in the “Annals of King Sukjong (粛宗)”. However, testimony written in both the “Annals of King Sukjong (粛宗)” and in the “漂人領来謄録” is considered unreliable since the testimony Ahn gave to the Japanese and the testimony he gave to the Koreans do not match in certain parts. In other words, Ahn perjured himself.
Hong (洪) also said that Usando was clearly written as Japan’s so-called Matsushima (Dokdo) in the "Mangi Yoram 萬機要覽," which was a Korean text published in 1808; however, it seems Mr. Hong did not read the original text. The article that Mr. Hong based his claim begins with, “According to the 文献備考”, which was requotation of the “東国文献備考” (1770), and the article in the “東国文献備考” was fabricated by Sin Gyong-jun (申景濬) when he compiled the "Yojigo (輿地考)." He changed the text in the “輿地志” to “Usando is Japan’s so-called Matsushima (Dokdo),” based on his book, "Ganggyego 彊界考." Therefore, the statement that Mr. Hong said was proof that Usando was Dokdo was a requotation from a fabricated document.
The same goes for Naito Seichu, who said that making a voyage to Ulleungdo during the time of Korea’s empty island policy was like going into someone's empty house, and he called it a "thief mentality." However, the Edo Shogunate regarded Ulleungdo as Japan’s territory when the chief fishermen of the Oya family clan in Yonago, Tottori brought Ahn Yong-bok and Park O-dun (朴於屯) back to Japan. However, as the Tsushima clan negotiated with Korea on orders from the Shogunate, opinions inside the clans split into two parties. One party thought that Ulleungdo was Japan’s territory, and the other thought it was Korean. The former party made their argument based on the fact that Japan effectively controlled the island for over 80 years. In the end, it was the Tsushima clan who proposed stopping the negotiations and conceded that Ulleungdo was Korean territory because of the evidence in Korea's "Dongguk Yoji Seungram (東国輿地勝覧)." Therefore, Naito Seichu was wrong to say Japan had a "thief mentality."
The last speaker was Kim Byeong-yeol (金柄烈). He called the incorporation of Takeshima (Dokdo) into Shimane prefecture "an invasion." He also said, “You could incorporate it if it were ownerless land, but Takeshima (Dokdo) was Korean territory.” He mentioned the activity of Ahn Yong-bok as grounds of his claim and say that "Seokdo" in the 1900 "Ordinance #41" was Dokdo. However, there is no historical evidence to support Ahn Yong-bok's claims. For example, Takeshima (Dokdo) was not drawn in such Korean maps such as the "Ulleungdo Dohyeong (欝陵島図形),” the "Ulleungdo Woido (欝陵島外図)," or the Daehan Jeondo (大韓全図)." Takeshima (Dokdo) was outside Korean territory and was certainly “terra nullius." Japan incorporated ownerless land, and it was acceptable under international law, as Kim pointed out.
They put the educational video up for viewing on January 18th, the very same day that Korea invaded Takeshima (Dokdo) after drawing the “Rhee Syngman Line” on the open sea. The problem is that there was no historical grounds for Rhee Syngman to draw the line. As Mr. Naito expressed in the Northeast Asian History Foundation's educational video, Rhee's action was based on "thief mentality."
Translated by PacifistCourtesy of Web Takeshima Research Center.
Other Column of the Series:
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4
The 21st column " Refutation against "Analysis of Shimojo Masao's Editorials" by Mr. Park Byeong-seop(朴炳渉)”
The 8th column “The Historical Facts" The 6th column “Onshu-shicho-goki (隠州視聴合記)" and the "Nihon Yochi Totei Zenzu (日本輿地路程全図)" by Nagakubo Sekisui(長久保赤水)"
The 5th column “South Korea’s erroneous interpretation of the document 'Takeshima and Another Island are Unrelated to Japan"
The 4th column “Errors in Educational Video Produced by the Northeast Asian History Foundation (東北アジア歴史財団)."