Korea Herald Editorial: China, Japan and Korea

From The Korea Herald: A South Korean Newspaper’s statement on the rising anti-Japanese sentiment in China and Korea:

Now is the time when close cooperation is needed for the three powers of Northeast Asia – China, Japan and South Korea – to achieve regional security and economic co-prosperity. So it is most regrettable the three countries are embroiled in a triangular dispute largely over their different sensitivities about past history. The largely psychological conflicts threaten to undermine economic ties among the three, and shake the structure of security cooperation such as the current multilateral process to resolve the North Korean nuclear standoff.

Korea and China are not without problems. Goguryeo (4 B.C.-A.D. 668) moved on to Goryeo, from which the name Korea originated. The ancient dynasty that prospered over most of Manchuria and the northern part of the peninsula is Korea itself, but China now tries to annex it on history books.

As the dispute flares, international observers tend to interpret it developing from a latent contest for regional hegemony between China and Japan who both have found themselves in elevated economic and political status in the international community in the 21st century. Some Western media commentators, unable to see the true nature of the problem, support Tokyo’s bid for a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council, pointing to China’s egotism to keep its prestige as the only Asian permanent member.

Korea and China should continue to appeal to the conscience of the world for a rightful judgment of Japan, while they should avoid creating international public opinion that the former victims are overly obsessed with the past. Japan’s application for UNSC permanent membership is an opportunity to have world public opinion assess the past and present of Japan, as well as recognize how justified we are to condemn the shamelessness of this neighbor.

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