Here are what the newspaper says are quotes from the union.
The union said, "If schools teach the (Japanese) government`s unilateral opinion that Takeshima is Japanese territory illegally occupied by Korea, it could instill students with emotional nationalism."
"Dokdo is different from the Senkaku Islands (called the Diaoyu Islands in China), over which Japan has a terrestrial dispute, and the Northern Territory (Japanese name for the Kuril Islands), which is effectively governed by Russia."
The union added, "The history and civil ethics textbooks published by Ikuhosha, a right-leaning publisher which carries ultra-rightist opinions without reservation over history and territorial issues, distort history and antagonize the Constitution," adding, "Measures must be beefed up to block them from reaching students."Instead of "denying Japan's claim to Dokdo," the union seems to be saying that it wants to "objectively teach students that Korea and Japan have differing views over Takeshima."
A union source said Friday, "When we teach this part, we will objectively teach students that Korea and Japan have differing views over Takeshima," adding, "We hope to contribute to efforts to find a peaceful resolution."
That's fine, but will they just teach that "Korea and Japan have differing views" or will they also look at the evidence for the two claims? If they just teach that Korea and Japan have differing views on Takeshima, then they are not really teaching anything, are they?
If they were to look at the historical evidence, then they would find that Korea does not really have any to support her claims. Korea has no old maps showing Takeshima (Dokdo), by any name. Korea has no old documents showing that Koreans ever traveled to Takeshima before Japanese started taking them there on Japanese fishing boats in the early 1900s. And the only Korean references to Takeshima before the Japanese incorporated the rocky islets in 1905 are just vague references to a distance, unnamed island being visible from Ulleungdo. The Korean references suggest that Koreans could see the islets, but never traveled to them and even believed them to be Japanese.
Also, did the Tokyo teachers' union really refer to Takeshima as "Dokdo," as is quoted in the Dong-a Ilbo article?
I think Tokyo's teachers' union needs to start doing its job of teaching students the history of Takeshima instead of playing diplomat by ignoring the historical facts just to appease Korea.