Below is a translation of The 8th column “Seeking Truth Based Solely on Facts(実事求是)” by Prof. Shimojo Masao
"The Historical Facts”
The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a pamphlet "10 Issues of Takeshima" in February, 2008. Yonhap News Agency in South Korea reported, "Takeshima is a Japanese territory in new Japan-South Korea relations" on the eighth of April, a day before the general election for Korean new president, and many South Korean media followed this.
Mr. Park Byeong-seop(朴炳渉), a permanent Korean resident in Japan, who works for Dokdo research center in South Korea as a consultative committee member and the distributor of "Half-moon's newsletter", objected against this pamphlet.
Mr. Pak claimed that Dajokan's order(太政官指令) in 1877, "Takeshima and another island, Japan has nothing to do with them.(竹島外一島本邦関係之無し)" is the most notable among all, despite this, there were no mention of Dajokan order in it, which was disappointing." He speculate the reason of this as "It must be inconvenient documents and planned not to be open to public, or they didn't reach the conclusion how to make the fact disclosed in and out?".
Mr. Pak assert that this is "Achilles' heel" for Japanese MOFA who claimes that Takeshima is clearly an inherent territory of Japan, because there is a description "This other island is thought to have been the present-day Takeshima." in the 161st Takeshima feature of 'Photo Stripes of Shimane(フォトしまね) ".
However, "the Dajokan Order" in 1877 is not "Achilles' heel" at all as Mr. Pak understand, because Shimane Prefecture actually avoided to conclude, but only "assumed" that it "thought" to have been present-day Takeshima. As a matter of fact, Matsushima as "another island" in Dajoukan order turned out to be today's Ulleundo three years later (1880), and "Takeshima" in the order was identified as today's Jukdo which locates 2km east of Ulleundo until 1881. Besides, though "A Rough Sketch of Isotakeshima(磯竹島略図)", which is a shrinked copy of Ohya clan's map in Kyoho era by Shimane prefecture, in "Kobunroku", which is a compilation of related documents, depict Ulleundo as Isotakeshima and today's Takeshima as Matsushima, the maps in 1870's usually depicted non-exisitant Takeshima(Argonaut) along with Matsushima=Ulleundo(Daglet). The locations and names of the islands were complicated back then.
It was 1881 when such a caotic complication was disentangled and the "another island" was confirmed to be Ulleundo by the book "A Study of Historical Evidence of Takeshima (竹島考証)" and "Consideration about the dominium of Takeshima(竹島版図所属考)" by Kitazawa Masanari (北沢正誠) who was ordered to investigate the issue by MOFA's oreder. In that documents, Kitazawa concluded that Matsushima is Ulleundo, which is "historically outside of Japanese territory" and Takeshima is Jukdo which locates about 2km east of Ulleundo, and stated "There is a small island off the northern shore that someone said was called "Takeshima(竹島)", though it was not much bigger than a rock. In one morning, long-held suspicions and arguments were cleared up(北方小島竹島ト称スル者アレ共一個ノ巌石ニ過サル旨ヲ知リ、多年ノ疑義一朝氷解セリ)."
This Japanese geographical rcognition in 1881 was followed by Lee Gyu-won's "The map of outside Ulleundo (欝陵島外図)", who invetigated on Ulleundo in 1882. The small island, which was labelled as "so-called Usando" in "the map of Ulleundo" by the clean-up commander, Pak Chang-seok (朴錫昌) in 1711 was labelled as "竹島(Jukdo in Korean, 竹嶼 in Japanese)" and is still called as it is.
How does Mr.Pak explain this historical facts? Contrary to his belief, Dajokan order is not "Achilles' heel" at all in the Takeshima/Dokdo debate. The misdirected criticism, which ignores the historical process and the transition of the historical fact after ages, is the real "Achilles' heel"ish behaviour. " It would not deserve to be the called as "historical research" at all, if the researcher keeps selective attitude towards historical documents and deductive interpretation of them which were arbitrary selected.
This kind of phenominun is also seen in the four books which Northeast Asia History Foundation recently published. Those books were written on the presupposition of the "Japanese Invasion."
However, the historical fact is, it is actually Korea, who has any historical grounds for claiming sovereignty over Takeshima/Dokdo, who had illegally invaded and occupied Japanese Takeshima and never stops fabricating groundless history so that they can keep deceiving international society.
“実事求是 〜日韓のトゲ、竹島問題を考える〜 第8回 歴史の事実" 下條正男
Courtesy 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)."