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[Column]Why President Yoon must wake up from hasty dream of visiting Japan and US : Editorial & Column : hankyoreh japan

U.S. President Joe Biden guides Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to the Oval Office during his visit to the White House on Oct. 13. (Washington/Reuters/Yonhap News)

# In 2010, Japan fell on its knees to China. In February of the same year, China surpassed Japan to become the second largest economy in the world. In September, the Japanese Coast Guard arrested the captain of a Chinese fishing vessel that collided with a patrol vessel in the East China Sea and around the Senkaku Islands (Diaoyu Islands). In retaliation, China arrested four Japanese on espionage charges, canceled the China-Japan summit, and blocked rare earth exports to Japan. Japan, which relied on China for 90% of the rare earths essential for the production of next-generation electronic products, released the Chinese captain within days. In 2012, large-scale anti-Japanese demonstrations and boycotts unfolded every day in China in response to the Japanese government’s plan to nationalize the Senkaku Islands. China’s hardline diplomacy sank the possibility of “diplomacy and an Asian community independent from the United States,” which was aimed at by the DPJ government that led Japan at the time. China has chosen an order based on a “Sinoism” hierarchy rather than equal relations with Asian countries. It has greatly strengthened its military power, demonstrated its power in the South China Sea, East China Sea, and Taiwan Strait, and has begun to gallop toward hegemony in Asia.

# In 2012, Prime Minister Abe returned to Japan, where the road to an “Asian Community” had been cut off. In order to check the expansion of China’s power, it began to build a multi-layered security network that connects Japan with the major countries of the world beyond Asia. “Indo-Pacific Strategy”. In 2015, Japan changed its constitutional interpretation to allow the Self-Defense Forces to conduct military operations with the United States anywhere in the world. Former Prime Minister Abe was assassinated, but the Japanese government last month amended the three Security Treaty Documents, possessing the ability to strike enemy bases preemptively (counterattack capability) if it determines that an attack is imminent. Decided to double the defense budget. It is the re-emergence of Japan as a military power that effectively put the pacifist constitution in oblivion. At the U.S.-Japan summit meeting on the 13th, U.S. President Biden “fully supported” Japan’s strengthening of its military capabilities. Under the circumstances where it would be too much for the United States to hold back China’s challenge on its own, the United States decided to join hands with Japan, a “military power”, and cooperate in all directions in the fields of semiconductors, space, nuclear power, and energy.

Responding to the challenges of China’s pursuit of hegemony, North Korea’s nuclear threat, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Japanese diplomacy steadily secured a strategic victory. The U.S.-Japan alliance raised Japan’s status, created a Japan-led security network with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), India, Australia, and others, and re-established the Anglo-Japanese alliance. In the era when the empire was revived, Japan won the seat of a major “power” in advance. In the process, economic relations with China remained unshakable.

# What was South Korea’s strategy during that time? I went back and forth between the two extremes. President Park Geun-hye went up to the Tiananmen Watchtower alongside Chinese President Xi Jinping, but if China did not cooperate in resolving the North Korean nuclear issue, he would have to deploy THAAD (High Altitude Area Defense). He rushed to reach the comfort women agreement between Korea and Japan. The Moon Jae-in administration attempted to break through the situation by urging US President Donald Trump to strengthen inter-Korean relations, but the North Korea-US summit in Hanoi ended in a “no deal.” . The future of the Korean Peninsula and the past of South Korea and Japan collided with the “Abe line”, and the conflict between South Korea and Japan deepened after Japan’s export restrictions and the termination of the GSOMIA (South Korea-Japan Military Information Security Agreement).

President Yoon Seok-yeol, who has called for a speedy improvement in relations between South Korea and Japan and fortified cooperation between South Korea, the United States, and Japan, will announce a “final draft” of the forced mobilization solution as early as next month. We are promoting a schedule to visit. President Yoon probably wants to demonstrate to his supporters in Tokyo and Washington that he has accomplished the improvement of South Korea-Japan relations that the Moon Jae-in administration was unable to do, and that he has strengthened security through cooperation between South Korea, the United States, and Japan.

With China seeking hegemony in an unprepared state, North Korea taking the US-China confrontation as an opportunity, North Korea stepping up its nuclear threats, and Russia invading Ukraine, the “era without war” has come to an end. closed. Countries are playing a highly selfish national interest game. Under these circumstances, cooperation between South Korea, the United States, and Japan is necessary to improve the security situation without falling prey to nuclear armament. At the same time, there must be a clear strategy of what South Korea will pursue in the long and short term by utilizing this. China must return to its goal of “denuclearizing North Korea” and use it as a lever to prevent the spread of war in the Taiwan Strait. South Korea’s voice must be strengthened. South Korea is a country that holds the key to the security and economy of East Asia. South Korea should demand an equal relationship so as not to become a dependent variable of the US-Japan alliance, and secure its position in rapidly changing high-tech and economic order.

The Yoon Seok-yeol administration seems to be overly impatient, and is running ahead looking only at the United States and Japan. Has President Yoon Seok-yeol strongly demanded South Korea’s position on past issues from the United States and Japan? Did the president make a serious effort to persuade victims of forced labor and public opinion? Since Japan has solidified its position with the United States, it seems that there is no need to make concessions to South Korea, which is in a hurry. Japan still stubbornly refuses to apologize to the victims of forced labor and to participate in the reparations of the perpetrators. Former President Lee Myung-bak promoted the conclusion of GSOMIA with Japan in 2012, but canceled it 50 minutes before the signing due to a deterioration in public opinion. He visited Dokdo Island and demanded an “apology from the emperor,” pushing South Korea-Japan relations to the bottom. On the other hand, he is a teacher that President Yoon should be wary of.

// Hankyoreh Newspaper

Park Min-hee|Editorial Writer (Contact [email protected]) original input: 2023-01-25 02:21
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