Below is a translation of The 12th column “Seeking Truth Based Solely on Facts(実事求是)” by Prof. Shimojo Masao
" Northeast Asian History Foundation and Dokdo Research Center's Misunderstanding”
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs published pamphlet "10 Issues of Takeshima", and pointed out the fact that there is no historical proof for South Korea to be able to insist on the sovereignty over Dokdo/Takeshima in February, 2008. Although South Korean authority such as "Northeast Asian History Foundation" and "Dokdo Research Center under the Korea Maritime Institute(韓国海洋水産開発院)" did rebutted against it, they didn't succeed in refuting the opinion of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs afterall. There is an important meaning in this. It did succeed in proving the fact the current situation that South Korea is occupying the island illegally, contrary to their intention.
South Korea has been claimed the island have been Korean territory since 6th century, on the basis of the annotation of "Dongguk Munheon Bigo Yojigo(東国文献備考・與地考)"(1770) which says "Yojiji says that Ulleun and Usan are all Usanguk. Usan is so-called Japanese Matsushima （輿地志云 鬱陵 于山 皆于山國地 于山則倭所謂松島也).
However, the phamphｌet mentioned that the annotation was the fabrication after ages and debunked the South Korea's historical basis for their territorial claim. Korean should have had rebutted the annotation of with supporting evidences thorough philological study. On the contrary, Korean side avoided this important point of issue and made their own unrelated point, calling it a rebuttal, even their own basis for territorial claim was refuted.
Northeast Asian History Foundation claims that Dokdo/Takeshima is Korean territory since it can be seen from Ulleungdo. However, that is an arbitrary interpretation of the sentence "The two islands of Usan (于山) and Muleung (武陵) are in the sea due east of this hyeon. The distance between the two islands is close enough that they can be seen on a clear day when the wind is blowing. (于山武陵二島 在縣正東海中 二島相去不遠 風日清明 則可望見)" from "geography section of the Annals of King Sejong(世宗実録地理志 蔚珍県条）". They simply misread the sentence that Dokdo/Takeshima can be seen from Ulleungdo. In fact, it can be confirmed in "Sinjeung Donggukyeojiseungnam(新増東国輿地勝覧)", which described the corresponding part of "Geography section of the Annals of King Sejong(世宗実録地理志)" in detail. In "Sinjeung Donggukyeojiseungnam(新増東国輿地勝覧)", it is clearly written that it is Ulleungdo's trees on the peaks of the mountains and the sand at their feet which can be seen from Uljin(蔚珍), which administrates Ulleungdo. The interpretation is consistent with "輿地図書" in mid 18th century and 金正浩's "大東地志", etc. What is the point for Northeast Asian History Foundation to intentionally misinterpretate the sentence as it is Dokdo/Takeshima which can be seen from Ulleungdo? Despite the scholars in Choson dynasty interpreted the sentence that it is Ullgungdo which can be seen from Uljin. The rebuttal by Foundation is nothing but just a political propaganda which is went far off the normal course of historical study.
Dokdo Research Center is this kind in the point of misinterpretation of historical documents. In case of the Dokdo Center, they interprete the documents on the basis of the sentence of "Dongguk Munheon Bigo Yojigo(東国文献備考・與地考)", on the assumption that Usando is Dokdo/Takeshima. However, they need to prove that Usando was today's Dokdo/Takeshima empirically in the first place, otherwise, their counterargument is nothing but just a thoughtless words(妄言).
Interestingly, the opinion of Korean "Tokto Protection Morale(独島守護士気)", which is shown on the net reveals this fact point-blank. It introduces the Japanese claim and says that "Dongguk Munheon Bigo Yojigo(東国文献備考・與地考)", which Korean had used as a basis of their claim, is written based on 申景濬's "彊界誌", and "彊界誌" itself was plagiarized from 李孟休's "春官志". Besides, 柳馨遠's "東国輿地志", which was quoted in the annotation of "Dongguk Munheon Bigo Yojigo(東国文献備考・與地考)" actually says that "It is said that Usan and Ulleung were originally one island (一説干山 鬱陵 本一島)", but it doesn't say that "Usan is so-called Japanese Matsushima (于山則倭所謂松島也). It is apparent that 申景濬, the writer of "東国文献備考" fabricated the annotation in the process of compiling the document.
Sadly, however, it looks like that Korean, who only has historical recognition that "Dokdo/Takeshima is Korean territory", doesn't understand how important it is to read the documents like 申景濬's "彊界誌" and 李孟休's "春官志" critically. The reason Japan keep insisting it's sovereignty over their inherent part of territory, Takeshima is because of Korean illegal occupation over Takeshima without the reasonable historical evidence whatsoever.
“実事求是 〜日韓のトゲ、竹島問題を考える〜 第12回 「東北アジア歴史財団」と「韓国海洋水産開発院」の誤解 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)."