"S. Korean Lawmakers to Visit Washington Over Dokdo Issue"

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!

A November 20, Yonhap News article entitled, "S. Korean Lawmakers to Visit Washington Over Dokdo Issue," says that a bipartisan group of South Korean legislators are going to Washington to "make sure that the incoming Barack Obama administration clearly acknowledges Dokdo as South Korea's land."

With all the economic problems facing Korea, the US, and the rest of the world, why would a group of Korean politicians be wasting time and money to go to the US to talk about a small group of desolate rocks in the the middle of the Sea of Japan instead of more important, pressing issues?

Korea already knows that the United States does not want to get involved in the Dokdo/Takeshima dispute. Also, why would Korea want to refocus world attention on Dokdo, given that Korea's historical claims to the islets are just a bunch of lies?

Besides getting a free vacation to the United States, the only other possible explanation I can think of for these politicians going to Washington to talk about Dokdo is that they are mentally challenged.


  1. "Korea already knows that the United States does not want to get involved in the Dokdo/Takeshima dispute. Also, why would Korea want to refocus world attention on Dokdo, given that Korea's historical claims to the islets are just a bunch of lies?"

    More to the point, why would they go to Washington when the official position of the Korean government is that the Liancourt Rocks are not under dispute?

  2. Is there any possibility that they received special order from upper north? Or maybe they are secretly working for Japan? Jokes aside, conspiracy theory is always fun.

    I think they should invite Americans to Korea instead going themselves. Then they can save much U.S. dollars they are desperately trying to borrow from Japan.

    Is everything alright in Korea, Gerry? We are worried about you.

  3. >why would they go to Washington when the official position of the Korean government is that the Liancourt Rocks are not under dispute?

    It's a good point.


    President Lee Myonbak said that Dokdo Issue is not a problem between Korea and U.S. but a problem between Korea and Japan when President Bush visited South Korea and met Lee Myonbak,August 6of this year.

    The members of the bipartisan group do not know President Ree's remark?

  4. Hi Kaneganese,

    I have been sick for the past week or so, and was pretty busy before that. I saw a doctor yesterday and got some antibiotics for an infection in my throat and ear that has been driving me crazy for a week. I already feel a little better.

    I kept putting off going to the doctor because I didn't really have any time and because I thought my body could fight it off, but my body was not as strong as I thought it was.

    Here are some recent comments about Dokdo from Japanese, North Korean, and South Korean representatives at the United Nations:

    Japanese Representative:

    The representative of Japan spoke in exercise of the right of reply, regarding statements made yesterday by the representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Japan firmly believed that the qualifications of a country for permanent Security Council membership should be based on that country’s contributions to the maintenance of peace and security. Since the beginning, Japan had worked hard to promote disarmament, and had supported the United Nations’ undertakings through peacekeeping operations and contributing to world prosperity.

    He regretted that the representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea had referred to the abduction issue, and his delegation could not accept such a reference. That was a humanitarian issue and it must be resolved. Japan had faced up to its past since World War II, and had maintained that it would resolve all issues, including abductions, through consultations. Japan had publicly stated, in the General Assembly and other bodies, its position, and stood ready to contribute actively and constructively to peace and security at any time.

    South Korean Representative:

    The representative of the Republic of Korea, referring to the Dokdo islands, reiterated his country’s position, which had been articulated several times, and was supported by both international law and fact.

    North Korean Representative:

    The representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, commenting on Japan’s statement, said that when opportunities were provided, Japan pretended that past crimes were groundless. That was hypocritical. It was well known that Japan had not reflected on its crimes against humanity or made honest reparations. It had forcibly drafted Koreans, and forced women and girls into sexual slavery. After its defeat in the War, Japan had destroyed documents related to its crimes, and doing that would not be sufficient to delete its “crime-woven traces”.

    He said Japan claimed to have apologized, but that was only a “tricky move” to divert international opinion. It was Japan’s customary practice to say that it had repented when it was at a political impasse. High-level Japanese officials had asserted there were no documents regarding “comfort women”. Such was the authentic nature of Japan’s position on its blood-stained history, and today, many of those people lived in pain from such slavery.

    Moreover, the facts about Japan’s past crimes had been removed from textbooks, and those responsible for human slaughtering were today honoured as heroes, he said. Japan denied settlement of the issue and would surely repeat the same path of committing crimes against humanity. That was why the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea took seriously Japan’s moves against his country, notably through moves to grab Tok Islet, and the organized repression of Korean residents in Japan. If a permanent Security Council seat was given to Japan, that would be the same as instigating Japan’s ambition, which was a dangerous risk.

    Japanese representative:

    The representative of Japan said, regarding the statement made by the representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Japan had a consistent policy on the Tok Islet and would not repeat it today. Both countries had their own position. Both countries had to work together towards a mature partnership.

    Regarding the statement of the representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, he said Japan had already explained its position and would not repeat it. Still, he had to mention that Japan had conducted talks regarding the unfortunate past in normalizing relations. The allegation that Japan had refused to settle the issue did not reflect the facts, and he reminded the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea that it must take concrete steps to initiate talks and normalize relations.

    North Korean Representative:

    The representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea said he had an obligation to reiterate the issue of Japan’s crimes since the Japanese delegation had not understood the issue. Japan’s crimes were not just an issue of the past, but an issue of the present, such as the recent “rash act” to grab Dokdo Island. Its violations of human rights and acts of repression were typical. Its crimes could not be covered up, no matter how much it tried.

    Japan had no right to become a permanent member of the Security Council and charged with protecting international peace and security. Japan’s insincerity had reached the extreme. He urged it to follow the example of other countries in resolving the issues of the past. Dokdo was a full sovereign territory of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and there was no room for talks. Dokdo Islet was a Korean territory. Japan was causing instability in the North Eastern Asian region and trying to evade its responsibility

    South Korean Representative:

    The Representative of the Republic of Korea, exercising its second right of reply and responding to the delegate of Japan, said that the Republic of Korea Government was firm stating that the Dokdo islet was not a territorial issue.

  5. Gerry,

    I don't know if you read this article?


    what do you think of the claim that Jukdo can be seen in the day without climbing to the top, and that a record saying that one has to climb to the top of Ulleungdo to be able to see Usando?

  6. Hi, Thomas

    The newspaper you linked doesn't show the part of the document they are talking about. Why do you think they don't? Because the page include more lines. See the page in concern here. You can read whole pags from hanmaumy's site.


    The line in concern says "天將曉發船以來日纔晡已到寧海地面云蓋二島去此不甚遠一颿風可至于山島勢卑不因海氣極淸朗不登最高頂則不可見鬱陵稍峻風浪息則尋常可見". It means two island(Usando and Ulleungdo) are not far from here (此=寧海) , and since Usando is tiny, you need to climb the top of the mountain to see on fine day, but Ulleungdo's trees are tall then it can always be seen on windy day.

    Usando in 朴世堂's are confused with Ulleungdo. Korean were not perfectly sure if there were one island or two. They did knew there were one small island(Jukdo) next to Ulleungdo, so the confusion got worse. It was early 1700s when Jukdo was determined as Usando. But from late 1800s and the early 1900s, Korean lost Usando again and Usando started to fly around somewhere. Korean now claim this Usando was today's Dokdo, but it is not true. I think they are still confused or intentionally playing as confused.

    Actually, Prof. Shimojo already refuted Dr. Yu's distortion here

    Here is the English translation by pacifist. I've totally forgot to post it.

    “Seeking the Truth Based Solely on Facts”
    The 1st column: “Ulleungdo” by 朴世堂
    第1回 朴世堂の『鬱陵島』 

    The Chosun Ilbo (朝鮮日報) reported “Usando was Dokdo as expected” on December 4th 2007 based on the “Ulleungdo” by 朴世堂. The article was made with a view by Dr. 柳美林 of Korean Ocean Products Development Office (韓国海洋水産開発院) who examined the “Ulleungdo”.
    But the “Ulleungdo” by 朴世堂 was a document which an eyewitness account of a priest who was captured during the Imjin wae-ran (the war of Bunroku in Japanese) was added on the article of "Dongguk Yoji Seungram (東国輿地勝覧)", and it didn’t say that Usando was Dokdo. The priest was sent back home to Chosun by a Japanese ship via Ulleungdo, it reached寧海 of慶尚道 in half a day (from Ulleungdo).
    朴世堂 paid attention to the time required to sail from Ulleungdo to寧海. In those days they believed in Chosun that it would take two days from the peninsula to Ulleungdo. However, the priest told “We started Ulleungdo at dawn and reached寧海 already just before the nightfall”, which meant he sailed for half a day.
    So 朴世堂 added an old story from the priest on the basis of the article from “Dongguk Yoji Seungram (東国輿地勝覧)” and composed the document “Ulleungdo” in about 800 words. The important thing in the “Ulleungdo” is that 朴世堂 corrected the phrase in the “世宗実録地理志”, “two islands (Usando and Ulleungdo) are not so far from each other” and changed it to “the distance of the two islands from here is not so far” which means he meant that Usando and Ulleungdo were not so far from寧海.
    Korea and Japan have disputed over the interpretation of the phrase “two islands are not so far”. Korea interpreted it as one can see Takeshima (Dokdo) from Ulleungdo because there is a sentence after the phrase “one can view it (or one can view them)”. They claimed that the visibility of Takeshima (Dokdo) from Ulleungdo is one of the grounds to say that it is Korean territory.
    However, in the “Ulleungdo” 朴世堂 wrote “two islands are not so far from寧海” and he interpreted the phrase “one can view it (or one can view them)” as visibility of both Usando and Ulleungdo from寧海.
    Nevertheless, Dr. 柳美林 took the phrase “two islands are not far from this place (此)” erroneously as “two islands are not so far from each other”. Dr. 柳美林 ignored the fact that “此(this place)” meant寧海 and repeated the old theory. This was an error due to his/her inability to read Chinese texts rather than intentional one.
    朴世堂 depicted Ulleungdo as “usually visible when winds and waves subside” and wrote in details that “a herd of yellow sparrow fly from Ulleungdo to竹邊串(蔚珍県). Such information in details was gathered while 朴世堂 went to歙谷 when he was 20 years old with his brother 朴世堅 who was dispatched to the place as a chief of the district (歙谷県令). The district (歙谷県) belonged to Gangwondo (江原道) to which蔚珍県 belonged and the latter reigned Ulleungdo. Both of the districts faced sea.
    In the article of Chosun Ilbo, professor Shin (慎)Yong-ha of梨花女子大 commented as “This is a very important document to make it clear that Dokdo is our territory” but in reality the “Ulleungdo” by 朴世堂 was a very important document to prove that Takeshima (Dokdo) was not Korean territory.
    The reason why Takeshima (Dokdo) issue has not been resolved is that Japan kept silent while Korea insisted in various ways. Those who can’t read old documents have claimed laying emphasis on Japan’s invasion. But their actual condition is poor. It is a time for Japan to clarify the facts and insist in her own natural right.

    Please remember this, Thomas.

    When you read Korean articles, even even if they are written by academic scholars', you always required to check the original documents. Or you don't know the truth.

  7. President Lee Myonbak was unfamiliar with the place of Dokdo.

    벽면의 지도에 독도(竹島)는 그려져 있지
    양대통령과 텔레비전의 기자는, 울릉도를 독도(竹島)와 착각 하고 있습니다.

    (50초 경과시)

  8. 上のトーマスさんの文の翻訳。


  9. Thomas 님,

    なぜ「錯覚」なのでしょうか? 当時の人々は、竹島(竹嶼chukdo)を于山島だと考えていました。それを「錯覚」だと整理するのは現代人の視点に過ぎません。現代人の視点で過去の人々の認識を歪曲してはいけません。

    왜「착각」일까요? 당시 사람들이 죽도를 우산도로 생각하고 있었습니다. 그것을 「착각」이라고 정리하는 것은 현대인의 시점에 지나지 않습니다. 현대인의 시점에서 과거의 사람들의 인식을 왜곡 해서는 안됩니다.

    皇城新聞황성신문 (1899.9.23)
    ”蔚珍之東海에 一島가 有하니 曰鬱陵이라 其附屬한 小六島中에 最著者는 于山島竹島이니.”

    “우산도와 죽도가 다른 섬임을 기록했다”?

    아니에요, 그것은 于山島 또는 竹島chukdo로 불리는 하나의 섬입니다.

  10. 本文の続報


  11. Kaneganese様

    Your English translation “Ulleungdo's trees are tall then it can always be seen on windy day” of 「鬱陵稍峻風浪息則尋常可見」 is incorrect. The Chinese character 「稍」 is not “tree”, but “a little, somewhat, fairly or rather”. You mistook 「稍」 for 「梢」 meaning “treetop or twig”.

    「風浪息則尋常可見」 should be translated as “if wind and wave cease, then Ulleung can be seen ordinarily”. It means “Ulleung cannot be seen on a windy and wavy day”.

    Sorry for shameless correction.


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