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Korean campaigns for removal of Japanese flag from French stores

266 Comments

"I am a South Korean exchange student. I surprised to see the (Japanese) rising sun flag in Fnac, which gave me a very unpleasant feeling. I am sending you a photo.

"Did you know this flag was used by the military of the Empire of Japan in the Second World War? It's a symbol of Imperial Japan and among the countries of Asia stirs up feelings to the same degree as a Nazi flag does in the West. Is it possible you could take down this advertisement?"

The above, reports J-cast News (June 18), is how an unnamed South Korean female student in France objected to a poster bearing the Japanese rising sun flag. In response, the chain agreed to remove the posters.

Fnac (an abbreviation of Fédération Nationale d’Achats des Cadres, or National Shopping Federation for Managers) is a major retail chain offering books, DVDs and audio-visual equipment. It operates about 150 outlets in France, Belgium, Brazil, Italy, Morocco, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland.

Japanese became aware of unceremonious lowering of their flag after someone claiming to be a student in France posted remarks on NATE, a community site in South Korea, on June 3, under the title "I got rid of the Japanese war-crime flag that was in a French store." The poster also remarked that after going abroad, she felt her "patriotic feelings had deepened."

"Avant" (before) and "apres" (after) photos on J-cast show a poster with an illustration with Japan's "kyokujitsu-ki" (rising sun flag) together with a manga character brandishing a Japanese sword, attached to the wall above a stack of what appears to be manga, and the same spot with the poster removed.

The store reportedly responded to the woman, saying, "We may have confirmed it in our stores, but as you can see by the attached photo, the poster has been removed. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We apologize for sending this mail before reading your previous message."

The success of the student in France seems to have triggered similar activities by Korean students in the UK, who have reportedly launched a campaign for removal of the Hinomaru national flag from a logo that appears on sushi bento (boxed meals).

A Korean female student was said to have proclaimed, "While this is a small matter, I will exert efforts to change this 'war crime flag' in the future." She called for other students in the UK to join her campaign.

Some Japanese net users have objected to direct comparisons between the Hinomaru and Nazi swastika flag. The red, white and black Nazi party flag served as the exclusive national flag of Germany from September 1935 to May 1945.

The Hinomaru, officially called the Nissho-ki (sun emblem flag), is said to date back to an imperial banner used in 701 AD, making it one of the oldest national flags in the world -- although its status was only made official by an act of the Diet in August 1999.

The flag the student in France had protested, with 16 rays emanating from the circular disc, is a military standard called "Jurokujo-Kyokujitsu-ki" (16-ray rising sun flag) or "Gunkan-ki" (naval flag). It was in use from 1870 until the end of World War 2, but re-adopted in June 1954 and is still in use today by Japan's Ground and Maritime Self-Defense Forces.

The Korean kerfuffle has not deterred Fnac from offering Hinomaru flags for sale. Its online shop lists "Drapeau Japon - 150 x 90 cm" for 9.9 Euros.

© Japan Today

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266 Comments
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cry babies go home and stuck your head in the sand

35 ( +62 / -27 )

To me it sounds like someones got something stuck up their arse..

30 ( +54 / -22 )

Oh I get it above posters. So it's OK if I fly the NAZI flag then obviously.

-35 ( +30 / -65 )

Agh.. Yet another stupid claim from Koreans against Japan.

The Japanese flag of the red circular disc with 16 rays emanating from it has been used since Tokugawa era, 1859, which is originally just worship of sun from ancient times.

http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E6%97%AD%E6%97%A5%E6%97%97#cite_note-Searchina20130416-1

http://news.searchina.ne.jp/disp.cgi?y=2013&d=0416&f=national_0416_026.shtml

You see, it is funny Koreans never mentions German National Anthem to be a problem, although it was USED during Nazi era.

30 ( +54 / -24 )

umbrellaJun. 20, 2013 - 07:01AM JST

Oh I get it above posters. So it's OK if I fly the NAZI flag then obviously.

You obviously find it difficult to get anything. Equating the Hinomaru with the Swastika is guff.

The Swastika was the exclusive symbol of the Nazi party which between 1933-45 implemented some of the most horrific policies known to mankind.

The Hinomaru is the national flag of Japan and the Gunkan Kai is a varient of it. While Japan has had its bad episodes in history, no matter how much the deniers would say otherwise, the Hinomaru is not exclusively the symbol of the Japanese regimes who implemented them.

The Koreans should get over themselves and by their same logic, the South Korean flag should never be displayed in public, outside of South Korea, because of the war crimes their soldiers commited in Vietnam.

I tire of Korea and its constant bitching about something that finished more than 70 years ago.

36 ( +57 / -21 )

Call the Waaaambulance.

29 ( +44 / -13 )

I know that the confederate flag can cause some uneasy feelings with people. So it's understandable that an archaic flag that is reminiscent of Japan's imperialism may cause unpleasantness with koreans. I think we should consider other people, especially in a public place. If it's your house, then that's a different story.

6 ( +25 / -19 )

Article states: "and is still in use today by Japan’s Ground and Maritime Self-Defense Forces."

Are these Korean students plan to protest against the Japan's Ground and Maritime Self-Defense Forces? it's pointless to reason with these students who has a view of extreme prejudice. I just wish that media would not give these students any more coverage than they deserve.

16 ( +30 / -14 )

@sfjp330

More viewership from Japanese Right-Wingers/Patriots = Profit ;) It's all business.

-19 ( +7 / -26 )

This is vigilantism, pure and simple, and taken to its logical extreme, eventually we'll have individuals going around bombarding businesses with every minor thing that annoys them. If she didn't like the flag, the student should have contacted the Korean embassy and requested it to intervene.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

It's a symbol of Imperial Japan and among the countries of Asia stirs up feelings to the same degree as a Nazi flag does in the West.

No, it is not and it does not stir up anything, as of now. I think the Korean student does not have any knowledge of Asian countries outside Korea.

But, as Korean proverb goes, if one tells a lie ten thousand times, it will become reality. I think the Koreans are at it. They have quite a lot of successful experiences of that strategy so far.

19 ( +34 / -14 )

The Korean kerfuffle has not deterred Fnac from offering Hinomaru flags for sale. Its online shop lists “Drapeau Japon - 150 x 90 cm” for 9.9 Euros.

Good.

20 ( +27 / -7 )

As pointed out, comparisons of the Hinomaru with the Swastika are fatuous. I can't stand idiot nationalism from Japanese denying war crimes nor can I stand idiot nationalism in this guise. Two good reasons to study abroad are to study the language and culture of the country and maybe introduce some aspects of your own. . Is that what this Korean woman would like to showpiece to the French - Korean hatred of Japan?

19 ( +25 / -7 )

I am ashamed that this was a Korean who asked this, this should have been done by a french one, this flag has nothing to do on the top of a french store.

-20 ( +7 / -28 )

Just how petty and stupid can you be.

21 ( +30 / -8 )

2 of the worlds advanced countries and people of them behaving like stupid.. IDIOT

0 ( +7 / -7 )

they're just jealous that nobody wants to use the korean flag.

25 ( +40 / -13 )

Obfan, threatening to split someone's head open on a news feed... Very intelligent. Grow up.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Korean nationalists can be so petty.

19 ( +28 / -9 )

So i should go into a Japanese re-enactment shop and tell them to get rid of the Nazi flag because my grandpa had to work in a german work camp? It is in the past! educating, not banning is important!

13 ( +20 / -7 )

The problem is the store removing the image of the flag for a totally spurious reason.

11 ( +18 / -7 )

You can't compare the Confederate Flag with the Japanese Sunburst flag (my name for it, sorry), since the confederate flag was only used by states whose express purpose was to fight a war so they could continue to treat human beings like property. It's offensive NOW on the level that its used almost exclusively by racists to openly express their racism with a "i just love the south" escape hatch.

0 ( +13 / -12 )

That's like saying England shouldn't fly St. George's Cross (the red cross on a white field) because the same symbol was used by the crusaders. It's sad to see people acting this way, but that's how it is, I guess.

11 ( +17 / -6 )

Oh ofcourse the Koreans.... I couldn't care less if Holland had Nazi flags all over the place. A symbol alone doesn't hold any power, only the person behind it does. And how that he's gone it doesn't matter anything what happens to those flags. And setting all that aside, the Swastika isn't a bad sign at all.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

So i should go into a Japanese re-enactment shop and tell them to get rid of the Nazi flag because my grandpa had to work in a german work camp? It is in the past! educating, not banning is important!

Actually@Dennis, displays of Nazi regalia in both Japan and South Korea have been occasionally protested by the Simon Wiesenthal Center. There was even a club in Pusan I believe it was named "Hitler." Might still be there for all I know.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is what happens when children who are brought up in an environment of media and state "encouraged" propaganda. Koreans are instructed from a very young age that "Japanese" are bad and Koreans are the "victims".

This is an ongoing trend from Korea and Koreans, basically "Let's pull down Japan at every opportunity".

• Protest about Japanese flags • Protest the US to change the the naming of the Sea Of Japan to the East Sea. • Korean groups erecting inappropriate "memorials" all over the world. • The list goes on and on.

The only time Korea's profess to "like or love" Japan is when they enter golf tournaments or are selling movies and TV shows or are putting on a concert in Japan.

I think Korean's really need to address that big chip on their shoulder.

17 ( +25 / -8 )

What, is it sadism day here on JT? Seems like logical request by the student. Flags are VERY power symbols. The poster was most likely sent along with some magazines and put up by some 18 yo. The store could have refused.

-16 ( +4 / -20 )

I think she did good. Why have an offensive flag up for any reason. Japan coninually (think Osaka mayor buffoon) denies war atrocities. I never saw flying nazi flag in my life and even as a white american I consider a confederate flag as a symbol of slavery.

-14 ( +7 / -21 )

@ Dog As a man who was born and raised in Central Florida...I know ALL bout what the Confederate flag MEANS, regardless of what flowers you put on it. Anyway, the Japanese flag has a lot more history behind than a bunch of slave owner's rag does, and the comparison is laughable at best.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

I'm not concerned with one student making a fuss about a flag. I'm more concerned about the many who seem to attribute the actions of one student to an entire nation.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

It is in the past<

Past? Just because it happend in the past, does that allow us forget about what happened? If you really want, I can say that 'past' on almost everything. For example, why hold memorials for fallen soldiers when they died in the PAST? Why teach history at all when everything happened in the past? Exactly.

-12 ( +5 / -17 )

So, the French and English should write the Korean students a letter politely asking them to keep their political pettiness to their own shores.

6 ( +14 / -8 )

Shinjuku No YajuJun. 20, 2013 - 11:15AM JST

@ Dog As a man who was born and raised in Central Florida...I know ALL bout what the Confederate flag MEANS, regardless of what flowers you put on it. Anyway, the Japanese flag has a lot more history behind than a bunch of slave owner's rag does, and the comparison is laughable at best.

I think what you are expressing is the emotive issue around this topic.

I'm neither American nor black and I see the symbols and events of that period purely from a historical perspective.

Most writers on here are not Korean and they do likewise with the Hinomaru. Now if you're telling me that you can't see why Koreans might find displaying of the Hinomaru objectionable, but the flying of the Southern Cross is objectionable, your moral judgement is more akin to the noble savage who once replied to the question of 'what is right and what is wrong? by saying, 'stealing from me is wrong, My stealing from others is right.'

The Hinomaru and the Southern Cross have their various shades of grey, perceived differently by all. The Swastika has only one shade of black perceived the same by all sane men and women.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

I know that the confederate flag can cause some uneasy feelings with people. So it's understandable that an archaic flag that is reminiscent of Japan's imperialism may cause unpleasantness with koreans. I think we should consider other people, especially in a public place. If it's your house, then that's a different story.

This.

Also the German imperial flag (which is much older than the swastika as a symbol of the German regime) is also not something that's commonly displayed about the place..

Personally I don't have a problem with the flag, and I wouldn't haven't taken it down if I was the store owner in question, however it's a free country; people can display or remove flags as they wish, and other people can complain or not complain if flags are removed or displayed.

It's not like we are living (or people in France) are living under an imperial regime that would mandate the removal of such flags :D

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

CH3CO:

" But, as Korean proverb goes, if one tells a lie ten thousand times, it will become reality. I think the Koreans are at it. They have quite a lot of successful experiences of that strategy so far. "

Actually, that was Goebbels who said that. But the Korean activists seem to have adopted it, yes.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

that particular flag doesn't represent Japanese Imperialism

2 ( +10 / -8 )

@ Dog I think its all to easy to look back at every side of a conflict as "justified" but the end result of the American Civil War (Beyond the thousands of dead and maimed) was the abolition of slavery. What other state "right" was changed? What other federal power was expanded? You call me uninformed, but trust me, I've heard/read all the rationales but they all crumble under the evidence.

As to the Korean feeling about the Hinomaru, I won't pretend to grasp the emotions elicited by seeing it, but I CAN say that the Hinomaru wasn't brought about simply as a symbol of Japan's war/conquest/occupation of Korea and its not the flag but the country that seems to be the offending thing. And its not healthy to harbor long standing desire to eliminate an entire country (Be in literal or in effigy).

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Every time I see the South Korean flag, I get an uneasy feeling about the Korean War, please ban the flag.

4 ( +13 / -9 )

Quick, everybody mock Korea because that student clearly represents the entire nation and its people!

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Uh oh! Imagine how Jews must feel when they come to Japan and see all the Swastikas on Buddhist shrines. The Hinomaru is a beautiful flag!

0 ( +11 / -10 )

The Korean student faces a Sisyphusean task, as French people adore Japanese culture. Manga is extremely popular, whether translated into French or in the original Japanese. The culture enjoys a gigantic profile, with the Maison du Japon in a prominent spot on the Seine near the Eiffel Tower.

As the 'offending' poster was in FNAC, France's most trusted authority for consumer electronics advice, perhaps our student friend has shares in Samsung?

The issue of hinomaru on UK bento boxes is laughable. London's biggest sushi chain, the affordable and reasonably authentic 'Wasabi', which deploys hiragana 「わさび」on its logo, is Korean owned and largely Korean staffed.

5 ( +14 / -9 )

@dog The Swastika was the exclusive symbol of the Nazi party which between 1933-45 implemented some of the most horrific policies known to mankind.

So you are saying that the policies and the crimes did by the imperial Japan during that time was not horrific to mankind? or what the imperial Japan did during WW2 was not as heavy as NAZIs so it's ok to display their Symbol ?I suggest you to explore more your knowledge about history and stop being biased. I believe that this flag has the same meaning as the swastika so better to just keep it away. This flag was once waved while innocent people were murdered during WW2 , so what's the difference with the Swastika flag?

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

@ GET REAL

The Korean student faces a Sisyphusean task, as French people adore Japanese culture. Manga is extremely popular

Dude, J-Manga and this flag are totally different things, If somebody loves a certain culture , that person would study and know everything about it. I love Japanese culture as well, but I acknowledge the mistakes that was done during WW2 and not only Koreans suffered under the Imperial Japan during WW2 , but also Japanese people .

I love German cutlure too, I love the beer, sausages , great technology etc. I am a big fan, so does it give me the right to hang SWASTIKA flag on my wall too because I want t the people to know that I admire their culture ? hmmmm...

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

This flag was once waved while innocent people were murdered during WW2 , so what's the difference with the Swastika flag?

Best point so far

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

@GetReal

Just to add the differences between J-Manga and The Hinomaru flag

J-Manga - represents Japanese creativity, art and great story telling. Hinomaru - represents OPPRESSION

Yes many of you will say that this flag was used way before WW2 but, the image was stained during WW2, and that stain will never be washed away anymore.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

The Swastika is banned in most circumstances in Germany and other European countries. It is not a symbol of Germany or German culture, it is a symbol of an appalling perversion. Appalling acts were carried out by some under the Hinomaru, as in my own country of birth where the Union Jack was raised in countries brutalized and enslaved by the British and also raised in the UK as a symbol of unity and patriotism in the face of the Nazi onslaught. Nowadays, the Union Jack is waved by royalists when Kate and Wills come to town, skinhead rightwingers on marches and worn on t-shirts by young Japanese tourists. To call a flag with with centuries of history ( not a pathetic, sinister emblem adopted by Nazis ) as emblematic of one admittedly appalling episode in its long history is hardly rational.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I have two of these flags one small, one large awesome flag.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

@CGB Spender

The Flag looks Beautiful to people who doesnt know what it means... same as the young teen agers who put Swastika symbols on their kits or clothing because they looked COOL without knowing what's the history and meaning behind it.... and one more note , The buddhist swastika is different from NAZI's , buddhist Swastika is facing left while the NAZI is an inverted swastika. Just an informartion since you DON'T KNOW.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

I'm still not clear, is the flag in question in this story the Hinomaru or the Kyokujitsuki?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

That young woman is a university student. She has spent more than 12 years in schools learning what? To be offended by all manor of objects and behaviors. To embrace hatred toward a nation for its historical past. To adopt the attitude of a victim in order to claim special treatment.

How will children ever become adults when we encourage them to be petty.

Someone should say to that student: Young lady the world is bigger than South Korea. And your likes and dislikes are yours alone. Learn that simple lesson and you can live your life without being upset by posters and bento box covers, or the existence of people you don't agree with.

4 ( +12 / -8 )

nemurenaijinJun. 20, 2013 - 02:08PM JST

So you are saying that the policies and the crimes did by the imperial Japan during that time was not horrific to mankind? or what the imperial Japan did during WW2 was not as heavy as NAZIs so it's ok to display their Symbol ?I suggest you to explore more your knowledge about history and stop being biased. I believe that this flag has the same meaning as the swastika

Get a grip... By your thinking...

Tricolor should be banned because of French war crimes in Algeria 1954 -62. The most violent war, in percentage of population lost, of the 20th Century.

Union Jack should be banned because the largest trafficker of West African slaves were ships flying under the Union Jack.

Star And Stripes should be banned because the genocide of the American Indians was carried out by soldiers fighting under that flag.

The list could go on... and on... and on.

Again, try and get your intellect around the concept that the Swastika is exclusively concerned with one of the darkest and most evil regimes of the 20th Century. The Hinomaru, like the other flags I've mentioned, have their dark historical episodes, but they are not exclusively associated with evil.

It ain't rocket science.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

nemurenaijin

More like the Koreans really do not know what the 旭日旗means or how Korea was involved in the last war.

More interesting is how the Korean Unification Church had incorporated the rising sun insignia into their own flag.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3a/Unification_Church_symbol.svg

Basically it's ignorance that brings about arrogance.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

If she didn't like the flag, the student should have contacted the Korean embassy and requested it to intervene.

Or better yet, just kept her mouth shut, left the store and taken her business elsewhere. I note that she didn't have the guts to complain in person but rather wrote an email at a later time. Typical.

The poster also remarked that after going abroad, she felt her “patriotic feelings had deepened.”

Showing that the indoctrination she received growing up has indeed been effective. Most normal people feel a lessened sense of patriotism/nationalism after going abroad. They come to learn that "their way" is not necessarily the only or best way. They gain a more tolerant viewpoint and become less rigid in their thinking. I suggest the woman from the article run back quickly to ROK and never leave again. We don't need her kind in the outside world.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

nemurenaijinJun. 20, 2013 - 02:49PM JST

Yes many of you will say that this flag was used way before WW2 but, the image was stained during WW2, and that stain will never be washed away anymore.

Not in my world it isn't... or the Olympics.... or the Soccer world cup....... or international conferences...... or the baseball world cup...... or the Rugby world cup,,,,,, or political meetings of the international heads of states.

To the majority of the world in the 21st Century, the Hinomaru is just the national flag of Japan which is also a quite beautiful flag because of its simplicity.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

@Dog

Those are beautiful sentiments, and might mean more if you didn't seem to ascribe them to every flag regardless of the horrors associated with them. I wonder if you'd say the same of the Nazi flag if it had somehow remained the flag of German in a post WW2 world, or the Confederacy if it had god-forbid won the American Civil War.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Can we see a picture of this flag somehow please? If it is as I think it is, it was probably used to attract attention (with a manga character wielding a sword and all) and definitely not to remind people of any oppression. We're talking about France here, come on!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Good on that Sth Korean student taking a peaceful, mature stance to removing a symbol well-known as one which glorifies war and the unsavoury and regretful war crimes and horrors of Japan's militaristic past.

Whilst some take to the streets in violent and/or annoying displays of right-wing hate-speech, this student simply made a logical and rational case for why this odourous symbol should be removed. Well done that student!

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

This is pathetic... Is this how South Koreans spend their time abroad... looking for items or shops with Japanese flags and bleating on about how offensive they are?

How about we all bleat on about the German Bundewehr and Luftwaffe having black crosses on their vehicles and planes? Hey, they used a squared-off version on their wartime equipment, so why not?

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Shinjuku No YajuJun. 20, 2013 - 03:50PM JST

@Dog Those are beautiful sentiments, and might mean more if you didn't seem to ascribe them to every flag regardless of the horrors associated with them. I wonder if you'd say the same of the Nazi flag if it had somehow remained the flag of German in a post WW2 world

The Swastika is exclusively associated with the Third Reich from 1933-45 and has no German historical legacy before those dates and after those dates.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@dog , so the murder of thousands and thousands of innocent people including women and kids , raping of comfort women, Unit-731 human experimentations, torturing and beheading of surrendered POWs during the bataan deathmarch, the ASIAN HOLOCAUST !? Tell me how are these not exclusively associated with Evil??? I challenge you to enlighten us why are these acts minor than what the nazis ?

-12 ( +3 / -15 )

Readers, please stop bickering. If you are not willing to be tolerant of opposing views, then do not post here.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

nemurenaijinJun. 20, 2013 - 04:01PM JST

@dog , so the murder of thousands and thousands of innocent people including women and kids , raping of comfort women, Unit-731 human experimentations, torturing and beheading of surrendered POWs during the bataan deathmarch, the ASIAN HOLOCAUST !?

The Hinomaru didn't kill anyone,

Most of the world just accepts it as the national flag of Japan which is displayed at international meet-ups. The only ones who seem to have a problem with it are the Koreans, like this dweeb probably wandering around France in culture shock and cacooning herself in her new refound Korean nationalism (which nearly alawys involves an element of anti-Japanese), and sometimes Chinese, when they get together in groups of more than 10.

Don't get me wrong, Japan has it's warts and all, but what that woman did was totally pathetic in 2013.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

@Samuraiblue

You are generalizing all KOREANS brother , its not about what the flag's symbol litteraly means ... Its all about what it represents. Like what ive mentioned above all the murders against humanity done duirng WW2 were represented under this flag, the meaning and intentions when this flag was designed might be good, but where it was used is the question. And there was a period in time that this flag was stained and you will never bring back how it was before after then... Plus please take note it's not only Korea that suffered under this regime, Countries like philippines, China , Taiwan etc... Were also victims

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

@Qamar: Here's the original article in J-cast, you can see a small picture there.

http://www.j-cast.com/2013/06/18177522.html

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yobi, that just shows how pathetic this is - the design is incorporated into a larger piece of artwork, not even a stand-alone flag. What a sad, sad woman that is.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Could you explain how this has anything to do with a Korean making a fuss about a flag?

Delighted to. Thank you for the opportunity, PK. Apologies for a long post.

Let's remember, the context is a handful of students, perhaps with little emotional ties to their host country, kicking up a fuss about the Hinomaru - not the Gunkanki- on sushi bento boxes in the UK, which I learned of today in this thread.

I love Korean food, and would often bring delighted Japanese friends to visit the K towns of New Malden and Oxford Circus in London, as well as Soho's excellent and super-friendly Shilla.

I applaud Wasabi's business model and success, introducing affordable, reasonable quality sushi to the masses. Their innovation of machine wrapping each piece of nigiri sushi and selling them individually was pure genius, and it's a delight to see Somali schoolgirls, Indian couples, southern and eastern Europeans all enjoying sushi for the first time. That's priceless, and displays entrepreneurial savvy frankly too lacking in Japanese people.

As for flags, thin-crust pizzas have the tricolore on them, supermarket hot dogs bear the stars and stripes, and curries carry the Indian flag to identify the cuisine to consumers. We don't see Ethiopians, Vietnamese or Pakistanis getting offended. Why the fuss over the Hinomaru on sushi?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

TV today said that the flags had been removed before the student's letter was read because the campaign was over. I wonder if that is the meaning of the oddly worded phrase quoted in the article.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Nemurenaijin,

The Swastik as misappropriated by the Nazis does not, and never did, represent German culture or the German people. To claim so would be a contemptible slur, brother, and throws a subsequent post's demonisation of the Hinomaru (as opposed to the Gunkaiki) into stark intellectual context.

Yes, the Gunkaiki has dark connotations scarred into many people's psyches. Indeed, Britain's union flag is still referred to by a some as the Butcher's Apron. However the Swastika of the far right remains unequivocally a single function device, and universally abhorrent.

Let's try to better understand what the gunkanki represents to the broader, manga-reading public in France. It's an unmistakeable, exotic and dynamic symbol often used in, and associated with, manga. The context was to highlight the manga section, not to celebrate WWII. That's why FNAC used it.

That the young lady saw fit to beat a triumphalist drum after its removal speaks volumes about tolerance.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

The store's business was not affected by taking down the flag poster, but it might have been had they had to contend with a protest demonstration by hysterical, screaming Koreans. The store also knew it would not have to worry about demonstrations/boycotts by Japanese right wingers, so there was no real down side to going along with her request. Chalk up another victory to political correctness.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yobi00 thank you very much! Then I confirmed what I thought. I know Japan is very much thought to be as the 'country of the rising sun', in a very innocent way, also design is part of a larger poster..

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is correct. Nishoki is a war time flag and does not belong innsociety at large. No one (informed people anyways) would ever think of displaying a nazi flag. Same thing applies to nishoki. FNAC did the correct thing.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

nemurenaijin

where it was used is the question

For your information it's still in use by various companies like the Asahi Shimbun, Asahib Beer and most importantly the Japan Marine Self Defense Force. The Korean public only made this protest very recently which started in the late 2000s so I ask, what have you Koreans been doing the last 70 years?

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Afaik it's been available to purchase for a long time, but just -now- they start complaining about it? oh well, sign of the times. Today everyone is offended by something anyway.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

This is correct. Nishoki is a war time flag and does not belong innsociety at large.

knox@ didn't you read the article? 日章旗 (Nisshoki) or Hinomaru is the national flag with the unadorned red dot in the center. You mean the other flag.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

People in the free-world have the right to at least ask that something offensive flag be taken down, and this French business agreed with her whether you like it or not.

Though you are welcome to voice our opinions.Whether it is offensive to anyone on this board or not is completely irrelevant.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Great tear down the flag of a country that saved a few thousand Jews during the Second World War.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

@CGB Spender.

Uh oh! Imagine how Jews must feel when they come to Japan and see all the Swastikas on Buddhist shrines. The Hinomaru is a beautiful flag!

Actually, I believe the "Swastika" is a combination of two "Ss" whereas the Buddhist temple emblem is the "other way round" (more like two "Zs").

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Asian Swastika(early yin/yang symbol) comes on 2 facings and rests on an arm. German swastika is rotated 45 degrees to rest on a point. Easy to differentiate.G

The Asian swastika was(USA Boy Scouts, etc) and is still used by many groups, etc.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

You can't compare those two flags. The patern present in the rising sun flag existed long before the use it was given to it by the empire of Japan. Just like the symbol in the nazi flag was used long before by Romans. The constant struggle about the second world war proves only that people are as stupid as in the past. That's what happens when you breed hate using the educational system. You don't see the Japanese throwing stones to America because they bombed Nagasaki and Hiroshima, do you?

4 ( +10 / -6 )

an archaic flag that is reminiscent of Japan's imperialism may cause unpleasantness with koreans

OK, but then shouldn't the Union Jack also send shockwaves throughout the world? Or was that Empire OK?

A Korean female student was said to have proclaimed, “While this is a small matter, I will exert efforts to change this ‘war crime flag’ in the future.” She called for other students in the UK to join her campaign.

Then better off not wasting time here and try to fix something that is actually wrong? Just a thought.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

WW2 has been over for for nearly 70 years. Can we stop already with the bickering about it?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@ Janes Blonde

This is what happens when children who are brought up in an environment of media and state "encouraged" propaganda. Koreans are instructed from a very young age that "Japanese" are bad and Koreans are the "victims". This is an ongoing trend from Korea and Koreans, basically "Let's pull down Japan at every opportunity". • Protest about Japanese flags • Protest the US to change the the naming of the Sea Of Japan to the East Sea. • Korean groups erecting inappropriate "memorials" all over the world. • The list goes on and on.The only time Korea's profess to "like or love" Japan is when they enter golf tournaments or are selling movies and TV shows or are putting on a concert in Japan. I think Korean's really need to address that big chip on their shoulder.

I think you summed it up perfectly. Too bad I can only give one thumbs up to this excellent post.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Is this story real ? Where else can we read about it ?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@nemurenaijin Didn't you think I know that the Buddhist Swatika is turned the other way around. It doesn't matter. It's still a swastika. Likewise the Hinomaru can be a beautiful symbol regardless of the history to which it is more or less associated. Koreans need to take cool shower more often!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It is an offensive flag in Asia. Sorry to break it to Japan. It was more than 70 years ago? Reality flash. There are some people that are still living from that terrible point in time.

It hasn't even been a century and suddenly Japan thinks they are above anyone else. Pathetic mindset.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

It hasn't even been a century and suddenly Japan thinks they are above anyone else. Pathetic mindset.

Were any Japanese people responsible for displaying the flag in that store? Did a small minded little girl take it upon herself to decide for everyone shopping there what is or isn't proper display material? I think we know who "thinks they are above anyone else". Pathetic indeed.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

The Buddhist Swatika can "point" either way. Here are some examples.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d5/Japanese_Crest_Hidari_Manji_Hisi.svg

That is the Hidari Manji Bishi crest

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2f/Ura_manji.svg

That is the Itsutsu Wari Migi manji.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b7/Flag_of_Hirosaki%2C_Aomori.svg

Here is the Hirosaki city crest.

@EastAsiaForeigner

Well I haven't heard people complain until recently by the Koreans although it had been used right after the war.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The oddest thing about all of this is that South Korea was not part of the Allies during WW2. In fact, since Japan had annexed South Korea, the South Koreans were Japanese at that time. And they fought along with the Japanese against the Allies. So everyone thinks that the Japanese fought the South Koreans during WW2 and the Japanese killed and tortured the South Koreans at that time? Who was this young lady speaking on behalf of? And what logic made her think that this flag provokes the same reaction as the Swastika would have on the French?

Making a claim in her own country, that is fine. But to go to another country and file a complaint against something that the vast majority of the French population does not have any problems with, would seem extremist. And that she receives cheers from her Korean kin after proudly posting this on the Korean local sites saying that she is a real patriot is the act of a racist bigot.

By the way, there are many Swastikas found on posters and shop signs in Korea. Even a bar called "Hitler".

4 ( +10 / -6 )

By the way, there are many Swastikas found on posters and shop signs in Korea. Even a bar called "Hitler".

I just read online that the owner of the bar decided to change the name from Adolf Hitler to Ddolf Ditler because he couldn't afford to change the whole sign.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There is so much anti-China and Korea sentiment on this board i often wonder if it is being run by Uyoku.

In France and the UK anybody has the right to protest against the public display of something that offends them. This Korean girl (and others) are deeply offended, for what ever reason (it's not our business what), and this French business accepted her protest in good faith.

Stop winning and accept the fact people are entitled to protest, ask for something to be taken down. And quit the anti-Asian and Japanese rationalistic rhetoric.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

@letsberealistic

Based on your own logic I believe it is my right to protest against this incident in which the person in question hasn't an idea about the flag. I also believe that under your logic don't have any right to question nor criticized for what I write.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

It's not the protester that angers me, it's the stores that acquiesce to Korean students who weren't even born during that time. How can they be deeply offended over a flag that already accepted internationally as the national flag of Japan?

0 ( +5 / -5 )

@SamuraiBlue

Based on your own logic I believe it is my right to protest against this incident in which the person in question hasn't an idea about the flag. I also believe that under your logic don't have any right to question nor criticized for what I write.

i think you got your logic a bit mixed up there. Either that or you just contradicted yourself. Yes, you have every right to criticise me, I have every right to criticise me, AND this girl has every right to criticise the flying of the Japanese flag in a French store. The Japanese flag is not offensive to me, but I respect other peoples feelings if it is offensive to them. You and others seem not to.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

<<@letsberealistic, so if a French African or French Caribbean (Black - Anglophone type) decides to raise hell over the French flag during colonization, then do the French have a right to hear him or her whine about it? And will they remove the French flag if it is deeply offending to the poor former subjects of Frances brutal colonial rule for centuries. I know this is off topic, but you need to see my point here.

Countries do not have to acquiesce to everybody's sensibilities. It's immature.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@KUCHIKOMI Jun: "701 AD" --> 701 CE.

Thanks for sticking with this in the future.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

First of all, the rising sun flag was adopted as the Japanese naval ensign in the late 19th century, way before WWII. Traditionally this flag has a positive meaning in Japan. For example for fishers, this flag represents good catch., That"s why they use this flag when when they go for fishing. Comparing this flag with NAzi Swastika is ridiculous as the Swastika was adopted by the Nazi part and it does not represents or symbolizes Germany. In fact the Germans keep using the iron cross, which was also used during WWII, as this symbole was adopted by the Germans way before WWII and it is not associated with Nazi. If this flag should be banned because of the imperial history of Japan, then the flags of all of the countries which invaded or colonized other countries at some point of their history (Such as UK, France, US etc) should also be banned. Maybe the Koreans can show us an example to emulate by banning their own flag which can represent the horrible crimes that they committed in Vietnam during the Vietnam world?

Secondly, Koreans are the last people who can critisize this flag, as they have nothing to do with WWII. Korea was already annexed to Japan in 1910, and they were Japanese citizens since then. Many Korean men volunteered in the Japanese military during WWII fighting against the Americans, Chinese etc. Some of them were even executed as war criminals after the end of the war. The only role that they played during WWII is that of accomplice of Japan. It is odd that while the Americans, British, Philipinos and the Chinese who suffered a great loss by the Japanese military (Ok, I know that Chinese people can find this flag offensive, but at least they don't try to go abroad to lecture other people about this flag), Koreans who have nothing to do with this flag are barking the loudest.

In addition, it is ironic that the Koreans just started crying over this flag recently. It looks like the Koreans always try to find something to bitch about Japan. First, it was the name of "Sea of Japan", and now it is the rising sun flag.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

And the South Koreans will ask for the removal of Japanese royal couples photos or portraits if they seen, the reason is they were the children of emepror Hiroito, a controversial person in history

0 ( +5 / -5 )

@SamuraiBlueJUN. 20, 2013 - 11:17PM JST

You are the one who contradicting, if everyone has the right to criticize everyone else then why start calling labeling people like "Uyoku"?

Yes! Exactly. You have every right to protest my use of "uyoku" if it offends you! Isn't free speech fantastic?! And so go ahead and criticise this Korean girl for making her protest felt. Attack her protest, but don't make it personal by attacking the Korean girl, OR more importantly Koreans as a people.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Sunburst image when used in subcultural context in 1960's to '70's when Japan was reemerging as an economic animal seemed to express a dislocation of values in those days. Economic resurgence somehow reminded us of the fervor of the previous age when we fought with all our might. All the fervor looks kitsch, uncouth and grotesque. Sunburst image was fit to express it. But sometimes I wonder which is more kitsch sunburst image or Koreans.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

There is so much anti-China and Korea sentiment on this board i often wonder if it is being run by Uyoku.

That comment should be scrubbed for being off topic and offensive to all other posters.

In France and the UK anybody has the right to protest against the public display of something that offends them.

Disagree in the strongest terms possible. First of all this girl isn't a citizen of France. It takes a lot of gall to find yourself a temporary guest in a country and start agitating to see things displayed the way you like them in public shops. Second, the shop (since no member of the public is forced to enter) also has a right to refuse the particular requests of anyone who is offended "for whatever reason" by what their shop contains. Businesses cannot be run when companies have to bend over backwards catering to the political and religious foibles of every polly pretentious who is offended "for whatever reason". People need to just shut up and stop complaining about their imaginary god-given right to live a life free from being offended or disrespected in any way.

This Korean girl (and others) are deeply offended, for what ever reason (it's not our business what), and this French business accepted her protest in good faith.

Of course its our business. Well, not mine because I'm not French, but if I was I'd be outraged that this little pipsqueak had the temerity to demand we cater to her ugly little prejudices.

Stop winning and accept the fact people are entitled to protest, ask for something to be taken down. And quit the anti-Asian and Japanese rationalistic rhetoric.

The whining is being done by a Korean exchange student who has since gone on to brag on the internet about her own heightened nationalistic feelings since being abroad . Anyone reading the story would realize that. This girls actions are receiving the condemnation they deserve. And that's no rhetoric.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

France is a free country but why did Fnac have the Japanese flag displayed anyway? Maybe they had a Japan week or a Japan month where they had special offers on all things Japanese and that was the only reason? Did she bother to find out? And why did Fnac not explain why instead of bowing to this student`s demands so quickly? In any case, Fnac have set a precedent for giving into such demands.

CGB spender - I agree that the flag with the rays coming out of the sun is beautiful but I argue with your other point in that Jews know by now that the nazis totally corrupted the buddhist symbol that is the swastika for their own disgusting agenda. Whereas the flag in question has been in use as someone else pointed out for centuries and unfortunately was the chosen flag by a bunch of crazy japanese war criminals which should not otherwise tarnish the reputation of a very fine country (just as the use of the swastika by nazis should not tarnish the reputation of Germans around the world).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

German military still uses the Iron Cross and marches to "Erika", a march tune composed for the Waffen SS in the 1930s. American military still uses Native American names for units and equipment (eg "Blackhawk" helicopter). British still use the Union Jack and Royal Coat of Arms to endorse their products and you don't see Indians shopping in Seoul department stores complaining about it. Unlike the Nazi flag, neither of these Japanese flags were created by a specific Japanese political party for its government regime. Like the above examples, these two flags can be associated with Japan's aggression in Asia in the 1930s,, but not exclusively.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Koreans and Chinese are taught to hate Japan from the day they are born, and the hatred is reinforced by what they are taught in their schools and by the barrage of anti-Japanese propaganda they hear from their governments and media every day. WWII has been over for almost 70 years, but they seem incapable of putting the past behind them and moving on.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

@hidingout

I am 100% behind anyone who stands and takes action against something she believes is insulting to her people. She didn't MAKE the store take done the Japanese flag, she only asked.

Interesting that you should be asking for comments suggesting there are postings on this site suggest members of right-wing groups to be "scrubbed". Reactions like that suggest a sense of guilt.

It is honestly disturbing (and suspicious) that there are so many posts on this comment board which are xenophobic and right-wing in tone supporting a Japanese flag that, don't forget, many Japanese themselves despise as a symbol of Japanese imperialist aggression.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

^^ A Realist

Pretty much sums up Japan as well if you swap your first sentence around.

So Japan, Korea and China hate each. So what. People have hated each other since the start of the time. At the end of the day, this chick tried to guilt trip the store and they fell for it. No need to tar all Koreans or all French stores with the same brush.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

The Japanese were also using that flag during the Russo-Japanese war and as far back as the Satsuma Rebellion.. its not exclusive to ww2 and as I said before, doesn't represent Imperialism.... the flag was in use from 1870 - 1945 and a version of the flag is used by the maritime self defense force today!

the flag fell into disuse after 1945 when the army and navy were disbanded. Why anyone 65 and under would find this flag offensive is beyond me... or is that what the Korean and Chinese education systems tell their students to think?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@malfupete

Why anyone 65 and under would find this flag offensive is beyond me... or is that what the Korean and Chinese education systems tell their students to think?

Tell that to the hundreds of Japanese teachers who refuse to acknowledge the kimigayo during school assemblies.

This undercurrent of anti-Korean sentiment on Japan today's boards is sickening - making me think twice about ever using this site again if it's just a place for xenophobes to vent their bellicose hatred.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

While I know it sounds silly to make a fuss about a flag she may have had a relative killed by the Japanese during there occupation of korea

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

And what logic made her think that this flag provokes the same reaction as the Swastika would have on the French?

Probably in similar logic of "Devoir de mémoire" and if you are a french, you would understand it.

that the vast majority of the French population does not have any problems with

And who are you to talk on behalf of the French population ?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Look at my avatar, the flag in question. The Japanese and Europeans/North Americans are not insulted by the flag because they (other then those who fought in the war) weren't effected by Japan's invasions in Asia with many atrocities, torture, and germ warfare. So be it then. Koreans should have the right to have Nazi bars and flying Confederate flags - those didn't effect Koreans in anyway, and to Koreans, they mean nothing. And Europe should have the right to fly the Japanese Imperial flag because they mean nothing to Europeans.

-10 ( +6 / -16 )

And Europe should have the right to fly the Japanese Imperial flag because they mean nothing to Europeans.

Like if WAR crimes stopped at the borderline of a continent to become acceptable. Nazis war crimes and those made by their allies do not stop at the European border.

Now if you want to understand why this particular flag should not be raised at the FNAC for mercantile reason in France but also why the FNAC decided to remove it without the need of any legal injunction, they just followed the main stream position of historians on the subject which is available also at the wikipedia :

Historians and governments of some countries hold Japanese military forces, namely the Imperial Japanese Army, the Imperial Japanese Navy and the Imperial Japanese family, especially Emperor Hirohito, responsible for killings and other crimes committed against millions of civilians and prisoners of war.[4][5][6][7][8] Some Japanese soldiers have admitted to committing these crimes.[9]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_war_crimes

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

240,000 Koreans served in the Japanese Imperial Military. And these were willingly. Forced recruitment didn't even start until

So why are Koreans bent over this flag? This individual who thinks they did some "patriotic good deed" is the product of the South Korean whitewashing of it's history,
2 ( +12 / -10 )

I guess the hardliner, right-wingers writing above's views are largely irrelevant anyway. The French business certainly accepted this peaceful student's views and removed what is an offensive symbol in many parts of the world. Well done that student, well done that French business.... "how sad, too bad, never mind" to supporters of Japan's brutal (and thankfully, utterly defeated) militaristic past

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

For Koreans, there has been an unwillingness to help the Japanese find ways of reconciling when the Japanese have tried to do so. If you look at the Asian Women’s Fund, which the Korean government did not support and in fact subverted by establishing a separate, rival support system for the former comfort women. Korean leaders have preferred taking a hard line on Japan. This has been especially so when there are divisions in the Korean leadership.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

A RealistJun. 21, 2013 - 12:40AM JST Koreans and Chinese are taught to hate Japan from the day they are born, and the hatred is reinforced by what they are taught in their schools and by the barrage of anti-Japanese propaganda they hear from their governments and media every day. WWII has been over for almost 70 years, but they seem incapable of putting the past behind them and moving on.

Sure, Japan has not been as repentant as Germany that have faced up to the brutal sides of their past. But Japan has been far more repentant than is often credited. PM's have repeatedly offered apologies for their Japan’s past misdeeds. Apologies tend to be given when there is a belief that those apologies will be accepted, at least in part, and that dialogue between the two sides will be advanced. The problem is, in China and South Korea there has been very little readiness to accept Japan’s efforts to promote reconciliation, and as a result, those efforts have tended to founder.

You have to ask China whether they really want or care about reconciliation. With China, the gap in interests as well as perceptions is too big for the pursuit of reconciliation. When Zemin went to Japan in 1998, he blasted Japan about the past in ways that prevented them from offering the kind of written apology that they gave South Korea President that same year. Maybe because Chinese leaders need to strike a nationalistic tone in part because there is greater internal skepticism about one-party rule. Chinese and Korean nationalism is in many ways defined itself against Japan. However, there is a chance for an improved relationship between Japan and South Korea. They both have strong common interests. They share many common values. Both democratic societies.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

The Koreans never seem to give up on bringing up history to complain about. Maybe they should complain about China for a while.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

kringisJun. 21, 2013 - 01:00AM JST

^^ A Realist

Pretty much sums up Japan as well if you swap your first sentence around.

So Japan, Korea and China hate each. So what. People have hated each other since the start of the time. At the end of the day, this chick tried to guilt trip the store and they fell for it. No need to tar all Koreans or all French stores with the same brush"

It's not quite the same. You do not see blatant anti- Korean and anti-Chinese propaganda in all the Japanese media on a daily basis, not do you see any objections or protests in Japan about Koreans or Chinese paying their respects to their war dead and so on. Nor have I every seen any incident of any Japanese person objecting to any Korean or Chinese signs and symbols in any foreign country, some of which are very offensive indeed. I know, I live in a foreign "multicultural" country and have noticed Koreans and Chinese carry their hatreds and grudges on here as well. I have not noticed very much of that with other nationalities, for example Indians and Pakistanis, or Serbs and Croats, who also hate each other.

That a French store would give into that kind of coercion is troubling, because almost everybody has a grievance against something or other. Giving in to blackmail or coercion to please a minority is the act of a coward.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Speaking of flags, Korea flag is more thoughtful, showing the important of balance, which whole world needs. Instead, Japan flag, sun in the middle without anything else, shows arrogancy and ambition and savage. Anyway, as we all know, Sun is not rising from pacific or any island, it was wrong from very beginning.

-19 ( +1 / -20 )

Have these people got nothing better to do? Seriously, it's been 70 odd years, I think it's time to let it go.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

@Dog

Now if you're telling me that you can't see why Koreans might find displaying of the Hinomaru objectionable, but the flying of the Southern Cross is objectionable, your moral judgement is more akin to the noble savage who once replied to the question of 'what is right and what is wrong? by saying, 'stealing from me is wrong, My stealing from others is right.' The Hinomaru and the Southern Cross have their various shades of grey, perceived differently by all. The Swastika has only one shade of black perceived the same by all sane men and women.

As you say the Hinomaru has a very long history while the Swastika was designed as the Nazi symbol. You also mention the "Southern Cross", but to disambiguate I will call it the "Confederate Flag". It can be viewed on [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_flag#Confederate_flag]. As is documented at the same reference, said flag was created during the civil war, and was used by Confederate troops and sympathizers during the civil war.

Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens described the reason for the civil war as follows:

The new Constitution has put at rest forever all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institutions - African slavery as it exists among us - the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization. This was the immediate cause of the late rupture and present revolution. Jefferson, in his forecast, had anticipated this, as the "rock upon which the old Union would split." He was right. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornerstone_Speech]

Hence, the original purpose of the Confederate flag has only one shade of black perceived the same by all sane men and women.

Despite the original purpose of the confederate flag, it was and is not outlawed in the United States. For that matter neither is the Swastika. For that matter neither is the Hi no Maru with sunbeams. It is generally recognized in our free speech society that moving forward towards positive goals is better than the counterproductive and impossible task of "thought controlling" and "censoring" those we disagree with.

Therefore, I find the idea of "censoring" the Hi no Maru sunbeam flag counterproductive.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is what happens when children who are brought up in an environment of media and state "encouraged" propaganda. Koreans are instructed from a very young age that "Japanese" are bad and Koreans are the "victims".

This is an ongoing trend from Korea and Koreans, basically "Let's pull down Japan at every opportunity".

The only time Korea's profess to "like or love" Japan is when they enter golf tournaments or are selling movies and TV shows or are putting on a concert in Japan.

I think Korean's really need to address that big chip on their shoulder.

Chip on their shoulder or perhaps an inferiority complex. Ask a foreign person to name things from Japanese culture and you will get a list of karate, bonsai, manga, sushi, anime, kabuki, hello kitty and so on. Then ask people to name Korean things, and you may get kimchi.

No wonder you then have some Koreans who claim "kumdo" (kendo) originated from Korea or that the Japanese "stole" ramen from them etc. This hinomaru-story is from the same front. It's sad, as most Koreans who I know are moderate types and then individuals like this ultranationalist student girl will make everyone look stupid.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

justicetzJun. 21, 2013 - 06:58AM JST Speaking of flags, Korea flag is more thoughtful, showing the important of balance, which whole world needs. Instead, >Japan flag, sun in the middle without anything else, shows arrogancy and ambition and savage. Anyway, as we all >know, Sun is not rising from pacific or any island, it was wrong from very beginning.

The South Korean flag is Chinese Daoisim symbols. That's because Koreans have no past culture having replied up China and no modern culture having relied on Japan. Even Kimchee wasn't red until Red Pepper was brought from China.

4 ( +14 / -10 )

Many Japanese people have reflected deeply on their nation’s war atrocities, Japanese leaders, sheltered from Asia by the US-Japan security relationship, had little incentive to reflect deeply on the nation’s wartime record in China or elsewhere. This is why there were 168 Japanese goverment officials still visiting Yasukuni praying for memories of 14 Class A and 2 million dead soldiers. The visit by these goverment officials does not help relations with neighboring countries. Remember over 15 million civilians died in China during occupation by Japan.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

That flag has been used in Japan for a long time. Before any war Korean is talking about. When people wanted to celebrate something long long time ago, they were often shown. Yes, the navy has adapted it after, and still our defense force (Maritime SDF) today uses. This is completely different from Nazi symbolic flag. It was represented their Nazism idea during a specific period of history and deigned for that reason.

I even feel sorry for this kind of Koran mentality. Over 10 years ago, for a very practical reason, I recommended to set Shoji Screen to divide a space, my Korean friend said it reminds Japan to my family. Don't I remind you Japan to you? He said yes, I have no problem who you are except your nationality. That was the end of conversation. I lost my words to say. I really feel sorry for this, but it is your problem now. Other wise, Korea should not have signed (signed by the father of today's president of Korea) the basic treaty to detach every historical issue for ever completely. That was 1965. May be your government uses the historical issues for some political advantage. Korean feel the way this article says is a victim of it. Wake up Koreans. Look at the future.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Japanese leaders, sheltered from Asia by the US-Japan security relationship, had little incentive to reflect deeply on the nation’s wartime record in China or elsewhere. This is why there were 168 Japanese goverment officials still visiting Yasukuni praying for memories of 14 Class A and 2 million dead soldiers. The visit by these goverment officials does not help relations with neighboring countries. Remember over 15 million civilians died in China during occupation by Japan

The fact that the shrine symbolically enshrines the memories of commanders who have been classified as war criminals should not mean that the Japanese - politicians or ordinary people - would not have a right to pay their respects to all the fallen. It is a symbolic gesture to remember the horrors of war not to applause their military conquests. Vast majority of those 2 million soldiers were just conscripts who were sent to their absurd deaths, I think they deserve a bow and a ring of a bell once a year. Every nation, including Korea and China, has their leaders visit the memorial for the unknown soldier during a remembrance day.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Craig, well thought out and articulated, but lacking any emotional observation, respectively. It's sad but true, flags are powerful symbols. I thought a Vietnam vet was going to sock me cuz we disagreed whether burning the US flag in protest was a right. As well, the pulse of the white Americans boils when Mexican flags are flown during parades and protests. Gee, I wonder why the MSM shows footage of protesters burning, stepping on and spitting on a flag? They represent a people and a nation. Maybe this woman was looking for her 15 minutes of fame, or maybe she has "history", who knows.

Here's another one. Replace the Japanese flag and cartoon poster with a German heavy metal band and a swastika, and hang it in Book One. Oh the gaijin would be going crazy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

sfjp330 This is why there were 168 Japanese government officials still visiting Yasukuni praying for memories of 14 Class A and 2 million dead soldiers. The visit by these government officials does not help relations with neighboring countries.

What is wrong to pay their respect? I know quit many people go there to show respect their family members to pray peace and ease. To determine again to not make these history is not going to be repeated. Also these MP are not necessary agreeing and giving an approval for them but simply to pray. What is Class A? Is that the reason no one should visit there? If Class A are removed? We may visit?Yes ot No? I do not understand your logic. Let us know your idea. Your kind of idea does not help relations with neighboring countries. Remember over 15 million civilians died in China during occupation by Japan. There many MITAMA at Yasukuni not just men in uniform but many civilians not just Japaneses civilians also Chinese, Koreans, Taiwanese,,,,many more.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

''It was in use from 1870''

Technically it is wrong information.

Among the Buke family, in Kyushu area, that has been used as Kamon (Family symbol) since much older days.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all others because you we're born in it.

George Bernard Shaw

0 ( +2 / -2 )

*

letsberealistic

many Japanese themselves despise as a symbol of Japanese imperialist aggression.*

Because they are ignorant. No offend is intended. Simply they have wrong information. It is no symbolized that. It has been in Japan before the war time for happy occasion. The sun is a symbol of Japan as the country of rising Sun.

Tell that to the hundreds of Japanese teachers who refuse to acknowledge the kimigayo during school assemblies.

Are these teachers saying above? They pushed me a wrong idea since I was 6. I could not sing my national anthem Kimigayo till the age of 53.I needed to see some specialist for therapy to remove some level of brain washed condition. I was a victim of their wrong education in late 50s to 60s. I know many people with the same experience especially went to public school during the Vietnam war, the teachers then told us not the fact in the history but what they though then. I needed to hear so many times during social class why and how the Russian revolution succeed in 1917. Later I learned my self that this means losing a war. The last 68 years, Japan was lost in many ways. Any way, I recommend you speak other group of Japanese people as well. Japan is free country, I respect they have their opinion even though I disagree with those teachers. But you say many people, are minority for sure. I do not know how long I live from now, but I want to feel that I am happy to be born in my country. I am some level still fighting with after war suppressed education. My uncle was a navy solder but still I can not visit Yasukuni comfortably.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

"Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; Nationalism, when hate for people other than your own comes first."

Charles de Gaulle.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

oh, the flag thing again. yaaawn.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

oogesa..

1 ( +4 / -3 )

“Did you know this flag was used by the military of the Empire of Japan in the Second World War?

Yes. It was also used when Korea, due to its government's incompetence, failed to organize itself and wound up being annexed by Japan. But perhaps that part was too humiliating to admit.

It’s a symbol of Imperial Japan

While most people don't think of it in such terms, technically, we are still in Imperial Japan, so this must be true...

and among the countries of Asia stirs up feelings to the same degree as a Nazi flag does in the West.

Speak for yourself, Korea.

Certainly, one has the freedom of speech, and certainly a "thesis" asking to remove the flag is just fine. However, as a university student representing your country aboard, surely a more general, objective and even-handed analysis is expected. The proper thing to do as a university student is to write a one-page letter, with 4/5th being a summary of the history of the kyokujitsu-ki, and, if she doesn't feel too silly by the time she finishes, use the remaining 1/5th to ask them to remove the flag on the basis of a few years she finds objectionable.

If this represents the intellectual capacity and objectivity of the average Korean university student, I'll be sorely disappointed. If it is not, she is being a disgrace to her nation. Let's not think about the scenario that she is the best Korea has to offer...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

hey pushed me a wrong idea since I was 6. I could not sing my national anthem Kimigayo till the age of 53.I needed to see some specialist for therapy to remove some level of brain washed condition. I was a victim of their wrong education in late 50s to 60s

Are you Abe? :O

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Go home, crybabies. You guys are pathetic.

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

@dog

The Hinomaru didn't kill anyone,

Yup indeed, but like what I've posted above, The Flag maybe designed with clear intentions, but many crimes were done under this flag. and you didn't answer my question, why those war crimes I've mentioned above are not exclusively associated with Evil?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Yes. It was also used when Korea, due to its government's incompetence, failed to organize itself and wound up being annexed by Japan. But perhaps that part was too humiliating to admit.

That's a pretty self-serving reason for invading a neighbor! By the same logic, what's to keep Canada from using that as a pretext to annex the disorganized and incompetent USA?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@sfjp30...

the Asian women fund is a red herring. By accepting the fund they would have ruled themselves out of future fair reparations for the heinous crimes committed against them. It speaks volumes that you don't get this.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@Get Real

The Swastik as misappropriated by the Nazis does not, and never did, represent German culture or the German people

Today yes! but during WW2 it was representing Germany, Nazi was Germany during WW2. and if the NAZIs won the war this will be Germany's flag now. Yes for Japan this old flag means something else, but during the war this represented The oppressors to the countries that they've invaded . the oppressors who committed crimes against humanity, oppressors who destroyed countries, towns and took so many lives . Yes for the Japanese people this means something else, but for the victims this symbolizes the OLD Japan that once committed crimes against humanity like what the Nazis did.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

There is a place in Kyoto misnamed Mimizuka (mound of ears) where is buried the salt pickled noses of 38,700 Koreans and Chinese from the Japanese invasion of Korea in 1598. They were shipped back to Japan by the barrels and eventually buried there. We never hear mention of this. Lets hope there is a good chance we wont have to hear about the former either in another 500 years.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@ CGB SPENDER Didn't you think I know that the Buddhist Swatika is turned the other way around. It doesn't matter. It's still a swastika. Likewise the Hinomaru can be a beautiful symbol regardless of the history to which it is more or less associated. Koreans need to take cool shower more often!

you are generalizing koreans making your points biased. So you are not against hanging Nazi flags then? because yeah like what you are pointing out it's still a "swastika" it doesnt matter if it's the Nazi swastika and for some people swastika looks cool regardless of the history behind it? same thing, Hinomaru can be a beautiful flag and symbolizes good things about Japan However it also represents the war crimes did by the old Empire of Japan. It could be beautiful indeed but now it was already stained.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Plus please take note it's not only Korea that suffered under this regime, Countries like philippines, China , Taiwan etc... Were also victims

True, but we do not hear other countries except South Korea and China make petty comments and "cry" about their victimhood all the time. Some nations have moved on and others still like to never let go of the past.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

@JaneM So you are implying that the people who ask to take away Nazi signs haven't moved on too?

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

I don't see what the big deal is. The Japanese navy still uses practically the same flag as their standard.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

It's fine for you all to have an opinion on this matter and honestly it really doesn't matter what we all think and write here. At the end of the day, the French store agreed with the student and took it down. If you fell strongly against that, you should email the company too to do something about it. I admire the student for taking action to change something she felt was wrong and I would praise anyone, regardless of nationality, for trying to make a difference.

For those arguing that the hinomaru and swastika cannot be directly compared due to historical use of the hinomaru before the 20th century, point well taken and thanks for the info. However, the word 'negro' was also widely used and even at some points in time preferred over 'colored' or 'black' to describe people of African origin. Don't think you'll find anyone using it these days though. What's important is not the dictionary definition, but context and emotional impact.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

No, nemirenai. I am not implying anything about the Nazi singes and people who would want them removed. That is how you choose to interpret my post which makes my point - at the end of the day it is not what object you see but how you choose (or have been conditioned) to think about it. Many foreigners in Japan who have been here for some time are tired of hearing such stories about SK and their constant bashing of Japan. As I wrote, it is true that the Imperial army did terrible things but the modern Japanese have nothing to do with those crimes and have paid billions and billions of dollars (or trillions of yen if you prefer) to support the economic development of these two countries. Yet, all the good Japan has done after the WW2 has been ignored or conveniently forgotten and every so often we get to read stories like the one above.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

That's a pretty self-serving reason for invading a neighbor! By the same logic, what's to keep Canada from using that as a pretext to annex the disorganized and incompetent USA?

You seem to have confused reason with justification. I did not say it is a justification. I did say it is the primary reason. The simple thing is, Korea had more or less the same opportunity as Japan to get its act together upon contact with the West. She did not. That was the primary reason she was annexed - if she has used the chance to arm and modernize itself, it would have been impossible for Japan to subjugate her, at least not so completely. But she didn't, and that was that.

the Asian women fund is a red herring. By accepting the fund they would have ruled themselves out of future fair reparations for the einous crimes committed against them. It speaks volumes that you don't get this.

Actually, the Korean government agreed to settle for a set amount of loans and grants in 1965. At that point, they already have no legal justification for getting money out of Japan. So the Asia Women Fund is really an ex gratia payment and the best they can realistically accept.

As for why no money flowed into their pockets? 1) They didn't speak up, in which case they only have themselves to blame and/or 2) a woman really was worth about that little back then.

If Japan accepts Korea's demand, it accepts the concept that any other nation can change their agreements with Japan in their favor unilaterally. Obviously, this is just not on.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

You seem to have confused reason with justification. I did not say it is a justification. I did say it is the primary reason.

Huh? I did not say it is a justification either. In fact you quoted me and I used the word "reason." Then you said "primary reason." We used the same word. What part of "same" don't you understand?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

So many comments... for a story that looks like another kuchikomi legend. Any of you has a link to the real event ? There is nothing anywhere. No photos of the window of the Fnac, nada. Looks like an invention to fuel some battles of nationalist netizens. There are books published with that flag, movies using it, and idem with swatiska, and in such a context, they could appear in a bookstore window.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Cos@did you try searching for the story in Japanese? Maybe you should try before you make uninformed remarks like "nothing anywhere."

http://www.j-cast.com/2013/06/18177522.html

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The French business certainly accepted this peaceful student's views and removed what is an offensive symbol in many parts of the world. Well done that student, well done that French business.... "how sad, too bad, never mind" to supporters of Japan's brutal (and thankfully, utterly defeated) militaristic past

righteously good comment Jmann... as always

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

@JaneM

She is not bashing Japan , she just asked the shop to remove a symbol that she finds offensive. And that flag like the Nazi swastika reminds their victims of the past. I live in Japan too , I dont think the flag represents the whole Japanese culture, however it represents that period of time when Japanese Empire committed these war crimes, So as the Swastika, It represents a dark past of Germany that others might still find offensive until now , but it doesnt really represent the German culture and German people. I live in Japan too I never hear Koreans and Chinese here crying over WW2, I see Noisy Right wingers bashing foreigners waving this flag and drive around the city though.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

I think the US occupation authorities did a poor job. They should have vetted the postwar government of hardcore imperialists, nationalists or apologists from the start. They should have included denunciation of Japan's wartime past in the constitution and banned nationalist symbols. Free speech is not hate speech and hate speech has no place a modern democracy. They should have bulldozed Yasukuni and built a memorial to Japan's victims.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

@Budgie - Well said!

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

I dont think the flag represents the whole Japanese culture, however it represents that period of time when Japanese Empire committed these war crimes, So as the Swastika, It represents a dark past of Germany that others might still find offensive

Then how about the Union flag of the UK which flew proudly over Ireland as hundreds of thousands starved, and over India and East Africa where unspeakable atrocities occurred in the name of empire. Do you think that ought to be removed from public view too?

I'm not trolling; it's a serious question....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Korean student would be within her rights to object if she had a solid knowledge of what it is she is protesting. The problem is, it's incorrect to say a Japanese military flag still in current use can be equated with display of Nazi symbols that are illegal in Germany and Austria. Essentially, she is saying "As a Korean I don't like Japan and when I come to your store the sight of anything Japanese is going to remind me of Korean's pain and suffering." It's like a Jew ranting to management over bratwurst on a restaurant menu in Chicago.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Interesting discussion but I have to ask, is there any truth to this story?

The main two things that have my BS detector flashing are that the French aren't known for being politicaly correct and that all google can offer us that might be pertinent - even searcing in French - is JT's article, and the link to buy the flag on the FNAC site!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

she is not bashing Japan

She is not but I fail to understand why she, a student who was born several generations after the WW2 when the terrible things she stated as a reason for being offended happened, got so emotional as to ask the removal of a flag used in an advertising campaign. This was no political campaign, and it was carried out in and by a third side country.

Such reactions are obviously a product of an educational system which teaches students to not let go of the past, to say the least.

So how did she personally suffer from the actions of Japan? If anything, I would rather think that she and her parents benefited from the infrastructure built with the financial assistance from Japan... and from the economic growth which was also partly ( if not mostly) achieved thanks to the investments Japanese companies made in Korea.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

ENVY CAN PRODUCE HATRED

1 ( +3 / -2 )

nemurenaijin

I dont think the flag represents the whole Japanese culture, however it represents that period of time when Japanese Empire committed these war crimes,

There is obviously a leap in logic in yours as well as hers. First your statement has very little basis and is completely subjective. YOU think it represents that period therefore you are reacting in which I find it to be irrational.

Second in a earlier post of yours you wrote that the flag insults her nation Republic of Korea but ROK was not even born during WW2 since the Korean peninsula was part of Japan which I guess many Koreans hates to be reminded of but that is the fact. Many believe that most Koreans at that time had despised the idea of their kingdom being annexed by Japan but that cannot be true since less than 10% of the entire population were able to read and not had any proper education of any kind. I can firmly say that they didn't understand the concept of annexation due to this simple fact.

Last and most important see demanded that the image of the flag to be removed as if she a represents the entire feeling of the "the countries of Asia" which made her "patriotic feelings had deepened" but if you really think about it the first really doesn't connect with the second unless her "patriotic duties" were to denounce past Japanese acts in which has nothing to do with her own nation.

At the end as many had posted it all boils down to indoctrination of hate towards Japan with a load of inferiority complex since patriotism is about promoting your own nation not denouncing others.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Huh? I did not say it is a justification either. In fact you quoted me and I used the word "reason." Then you said "primary reason." We used the same word. What part of "same" don't you understand?

Yes, you used "reason", but "reason" is a word with some arc, and based on the other words in your sentence, such as "self-serving", I interpreted that you are using "reason" in the same way you will use "justification", while to me I'm using "reason" without the justification part.

Justification, to me, incorporates a value judgment, as in "Korea is weak, so Japan is right in grabbing her." Reason is not necessarily judgmental, as in "Korea is weak, which allowed Japan to grab her."

She is not bashing Japan , she just asked the shop to remove a symbol that she finds offensive. And that flag like the Nazi swastika reminds their victims of the past. I live in Japan too , I dont think the flag represents the whole Japanese culture, however it represents that period of time when Japanese Empire committed these war crimes,

And there's your mistake, because the flag does represent the "whole Japan" (only next to the Hinomaru), and this student mis-represents it to only represent WWII Imperial Japan.

By this logic, you can say that the name Japan can be found offensive and call it not Japan-bashing because while you don't think the name "Japan" represents the whole Japanese culture, it represents a certain period of time. Wait, the Koreans are doing it already - remember the Sea of Japan dispute?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

sfjp330Jun. 21, 2013 - 08:10AM JST Many Japanese people have reflected deeply on their nation’s war atrocities, Japanese leaders, sheltered from Asia >by the US-Japan security relationship, had little incentive to reflect deeply on the nation’s wartime record in China or >elsewhere. This is why there were 168 Japanese goverment officials still visiting Yasukuni praying for memories of 14 >Class A and 2 million dead soldiers. The visit by these goverment officials does not help relations with neighboring >countries. Remember over 15 million civilians died in China during occupation by Japan.

And Korea was part of Japan, Koreans and in the Imperial; Japanese military doing all those bad things to the Chinese and other Asians. When is South Korea going to "reflect deeply" on their true role in WWII instead of pretending to be nothing but a victim?

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

A few years ago I went to visit my relatives in Europe with my Japanese wife and children.

As my pre-teen children were playing, I was discussing our life in Japan with my uncle. His wife stood up and suddenly left the room, saying she could not endure hearing the Japanese language.

She later explained to me that she, as a child in World war 2 ,had been an inmate in an internment camp in Java, and had witnessed her best friend 's mother beaten to death with wooden clubs by camp guards for accepting a gift of bread through the camp fence.

The camp guards spoke Japanese. Many of them were Koreans. Their commander was Japanese.

Her parents had worked for a colonial regime with had it's own record of inhumanities.

Her distress was real. She did not want to hurt my children's feelings, nor mine or my wife's, and she overcame her feelings and shared dinner with us. I later explained to my children as much as I understood of her feelings and experience .

I hope the experience helped them to become better people, not ashamed to be Japanese but also not too proud, aware that non-Japanese are people too, do good and bad things at times and have feelings too. Just like Japanese.

The crimes and suffering of the past perhaps can serve as lessons to prepare a better future if we neither deny the past nor use it to create hate in the present but rather to show the real consequences of actions that lead to violence..

7 ( +9 / -2 )

did you try searching for the story in Japanese?

Yes, nada. Your link is this article, precisely. As I said, only the photo of the flag on the cover of a book (that seems to tell a Japanese war time story). It's obvious this flag is presents in historic book, no ? Where the photo of the "Japanese flag in French stores" ? I want to read what the Fnac said in French, if they said something.

try before you make uninformed remarks like "nothing anywhere."

Try what ? You tell there exist some nameless Korean weirdo that goes to my country and claims we are not allowed to display books about history. That's plausible, But you tell me my compatriots obeyed to the order of that person ? Sorry, I really doubt it.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

...Imagine there's no countries It isn't hard to do Nothing to kill or die for...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Chinese, Koreans and the Hinomaru go way back. The sun banner was first encountered by the Chinese and Koreans in battle when they attempted to invade Japan in the 13th-century. And the battle continues...

0 ( +4 / -4 )

The Korean student would be within her rights to object if she had a solid knowledge of what it is she is protesting.

Really? You think a person on a temporary student visa is well within her rights to ask a major department stores to alter their displays in order to accommodate her particular cultural prejudices? Rather than just leaving the store and shopping elsewhere she chose to exercise her special right to have that particular offensive item removed from her highness' sight. And you agree with that? I'm so sick of people feeling "insulted", "disrespected" over trifling matters and assuming that everyone else in the room should just shelve their own preferences in order to see that they get to feel as special as they think they are. It goes way beyond just one lunatic Korean nationalist. There are people who feel "insulted" by Christmas these days ffs. Since when did it become expected that we could all go through life being treated like some sort of dignitary - even when we go out to buy a comic book. Its a sickening disease of ego run amok and its already spread to most of the civilized world.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

The Korean student would be within her rights to object if she had a solid knowledge of what it is she is protesting.

Based on many posts above, it's quite obvious that she doesn't have the "solid knowledge" as many Koreans who are protesting the said issue in other countries.

I see no problem of "banning" the flag within Korea based on their own distorted view of history but I suggest they don't bring their "baggage" to other countries.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Cos@I can't help you with a search in French (I did find the Korean web site NATE, but can't read it). It seems like Koreans were doing something very similar in New York earlier this year. That suggests the store encounter in France was not an isolated incident.

http://www.koreaherald.com/common_prog/newsprint.php?ud=20130218000659&dt=2

Korean Americans run in N.Y. to ban Rising Sun Flag 2013-02-18 19:27 Korean-Americans ran a 48-kilometer route through New York and Jersey City, Sunday, in the hope of banning the Rising Sun Flag.

All runners wore uniforms with the slogan, "Ban War Criminal Flag in all Olympic Games," written to convey the message that what they call an "Asian Nazi banner" should never be used again.

The Rising Sun Flag was used as the war flag of the Imperial Japanese Army and the ensign of the Imperial Japanese Navy until the end of World War II.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sorry to cut in. Sumburst image actually reminds us of the prewar and wartime era. But the image motif adopted by artists nowadays does not glorify the war but in most cases caricatures the pathos of those times which can be projected onto the present day by analogy. So the image together with other kitsch like Mishima Yukio in fundoshi holding a Japanese sword, a figure of beckoning cat in white porcelain, teeth braces seen between grinning lips or a steam locomotive puffing under magenta-colored cherry blossoms, though of bad taste, was appreciated as component of J-pop culture, not glamorization of the past. Even Koreans appreciate it and recognize that the Rising Sun symbolizes Japan and the rays emanating from it don't seem to bother them particularly. http://www.zeroonecenter.com/site/exhibition/current_ex/yokoo_exhibition/introduction.htm

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@JaneMJUN. 21, 2013 - 06:45PM JST

she is not bashing Japan

She is not but I fail to understand why she, a student who was born several generations after the WW2 when the terrible things she stated as a reason for being offended happened, got so emotional as to ask the removal of a flag used in an advertising campaign. This was no political campaign, and it was carried out in and by a third side country.

Such reactions are obviously a product of an educational system which teaches students to not let go of the past, to say the least.

So how did she personally suffer from the actions of Japan? If anything, I would rather think that she and her parents benefited from the infrastructure built with the financial assistance from Japan... and from the economic growth which was

also partly ( if not mostly) achieved thanks to the investments Japanese companies made in Korea.

You being short sighted in your thinking; ever consider that her grandmother and grandfather suffered under Japanese aggressions during the war? Perhaps her grandmother was a "comfort women" maybe her grandfather was tortured?

End of the day people, we have no right to condemn this girl as stupid, or brain-washed or any of the other hateful assumptions you have been making.

Hold your fire until she has been interviewed, or you have met her yourself and vent your xenophobic urges somewhere else.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Sorry, the URL is not shown correctly. Pls put an underscore between current and ex. Also between yokoo and exhibition.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Virtuoso, for the French there is no incident. I have no problem at researching, the French web ignores the story, and why not ? I don't doubt that instead of putting them in lunatic asylums, the South-Koreans let their loonies be full time national activists. In any place with lots of crowd passing in major Korean cities, they are there year-round, them and the cult people. Their presence on internet is similar. That's like Japan's black trucks, Brain dead. the disk is turning on the same ray eternally. That's not news, that's the landscape.

The Rising Sun Flag was used as the war flag of the Imperial Japanese Army and the ensign of the Imperial Japanese Navy until the end of World War II.

As other said, it is the current flag of the non-Imperial Japanese navy currently, but for domestic use only (as you know J-army doesn't go much overseas, and when they do it's as UN mission and they have another flag). You may think they should change it. I do, if you ask me. But that's Japan's problem and surely that's very low on the list of priorities. Outside the country, I don't think the flag is seen out of the context of depicting historic time (by sane people) and of being burnt publicly by protesters (by insane activists that just lower the level of debate by doing it). So I can go to a bookstore/videostore in Seoul and take a photo of this :

http://c.ask.nate.com/imgs/qrsi.php/9183800/12540441/0/1/A/2009-07-10%2009;45;53.jpg

It's the poster of that movie about Yasukuni by a Chinese director, but that I cannot guess what it is, I am an ignorant tourist that doesn't read Korean. OK, it's obvious without reading, but I'm really not smart and of bad faith. I will ask the flag to be removed as my terribly shocked. You think the Korean bookstore will answer to my delirium in English ? And why don't South-Korean busy-bodies start by asking the ban the infamous taegukgi flag, you know the one used during the Jeju slaughters ?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Jaymann Jun. 21, 2013 - 11:28AM JST @sfjp30...the Asian women fund is a red herring. By accepting the fund they would have ruled themselves out of future fair reparations for the heinous crimes committed against them. It speaks volumes that you don't get this.

In 1965 the issue was settled for $500 million that was paid out to Korea. The Japan goverment asked Korea goverment to show the concrete number of conscripted workers and soldiers, dead and injured and how much unpaid wages were. They asked to "show the evidences and they would pay". Korea agreed and investigated them. What I want to clarify here is that Korea didn't claim the compensation for the war time prostitutes. Why didn't they? It's because there was no abducted prostitute. Nobody said at the time in Korea, those prostitutes were abducted. Everyone knew there were many women who were so poor that they sold themselves to live and the Japan army didn't have to abduct Korean women. There were many Korean volunteers for Japan army at the time. Therefore Koreans didn't claim it at that time. It's the Korea goverment's problem if they did not disclose the comfort women issue at the time. What did South Korean goverment do with the $500 million that Japan paid already?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Regardless of your opinion, it is undeniable that the Japanese Sunburst ensign is the most stunning and beautiful design ever to grace a banner.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

LOL. I love the expat contingency so readily siding with a fascist symbol with zero understanding on context or history. The Nazi's also claimed historical lineage for the swatika and the confederate flag is met with indignation in racist US South even to this day. You DO NOT hear otherwise normal people siding with white supremists or KKK member sporting confederate flags and swatikas. Get a clue people and learn to exercise some decency.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Wouldn't it be more sensitive and polite for Japanese map makers to stop using that inverted swaztika symbol for temples in Japan, and substitute a new cleansed symbol instead, like perhaps, a smiley face?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Cos@You can believe what you want, but it seems Koreans also made a similar protest in Italy last month. (Sorry. but the article's in Japanese.)

http://www.j-cast.com/2013/05/10174859.html?p=all

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Many people seem puzzled by the apparent anti-Japan sentiments in Korea, saying why can't they get over the Japanese occupation which was over 70 years ago. But less seem to be aware that Japan has been invading Korea for hundreds of years, and there are historical records that go back to the 1500s regarding this issue. Not saying it's justified, but I see too many people demonising an entire nation without understanding the historical context.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

@Mitch

Mitch CohenJUN. 22, 2013 - 10:43AM JST Many people seem puzzled by the apparent anti-Japan sentiments in Korea, saying why can't they get over the Japanese occupation which was over 70 years ago. But less seem to be aware that Japan has been invading Korea for hundreds of years, and there are historical records that go back to the 1500s regarding this issue. Not saying it's justified, but I see too many people demonising an entire nation without understanding the historical context.

As I see it, here's the main difference; many Koreans hate Japanese because of what they did; most Japanese who hate Koreans are simply racist.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

To Mitch,

There are many countries that have been invaded for centuries, but they don't behave like Koreans. In addition, China has invaded Korea countless times. Do not also forget that China is the main reason of the division of Korean peninsula. Why don't Koreans critisize China and ask for apology and compensation? Is that because Korea, which was a tributary state of China for 1000 years, regards China as their master? Anyway, crying over and exagerating something that happened long time ago is pathetic. And let's not change the subject which is about a Korean student living in France forcing a French department store to remove the Japanese naval ensign, something that has nothing to do with Korea as Korea was not in war with Japan, due to her ignorance and brainwash that she received from her country's media.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Many people seem puzzled by the apparent anti-Japan sentiments in Korea, saying why can't they get over the Japanese occupation which was over 70 years ago. But less seem to be aware that Japan has been invading Korea for hundreds of years, and there are historical records that go back to the 1500s regarding this issue. Not saying it's justified, but I see too many people demonising an entire nation without understanding the historical context.

This post shows what is troublesome here: yes the Japanese did invade Korea already 500 years ago. Yes they did occupy the country 70 years ago, too. But we are in 21st century now, and none of the Japanese who I personally know today ever invaded Korea or any other country. Leave them alone.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

And why did Koreans start this negative campeign against the rising sun flag so recently? Don't you find this odd?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Nobody in their right mind accuses the current generation of Japanese citizens of the wrongdoings of their forefathers. However it's the denials of past crimes that riles up their 2 closest neighbours. It's not just the minority nutjobs in black vans, but the current Japanese prime minister who openly denies many of their past war crimes. You think this is a biased view? Then I would refer you to the NY Times editorial "Another attempt to deny Japan's history" published earlier this year.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

melonbarmonster , I cannot agree more...

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Sad! SAD! SAD! When Education Can't Help Such Ignorance. Some supposedly good minds are going to waste. SAD! They are stuck in a false past breading an internal mental cancer that is only going to hurt them more than anyone else, eating them from the inside. It's sad when your mind is your enemy. Free your mind to do more to fly like the birds to achieve more. Sad to always rewind the same sad music, you never get the time to listen to something new,to experience the joy that the new sound can bring. PLEASE try to BLESS the WORLD with Peace, The sad past is over! Lets's enjoy the now! Free your minds from the mental cancer, no one can do it for you.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@letsberealistic

As I see it, here's the main difference; many Koreans hate Japanese because of what they did; most Japanese who hate Koreans are simply racist.

I'll disagree somewhat and argue that Koreans, unable to find anything in the present about Japan to complain about, complain about World War II without even acknowledging they were part of Japan at the time. And if anything, their real legitimate grievance is their annexation by Japan in 1910 but they don't seem to mention it as much.

Japanese Korea-bashers complain about Korea's present actions, be it the continued illegal occupation of Takeshima, the present and ever increasing special rights of Zainichi, or their never-ending whining about the past. You can debate the merits of each claim, but they all concern Korea/Koreans' present actions.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

letsberealisticJun. 22, 2013 - 10:55AM JST As I see it, here's the main difference; many Koreans hate Japanese because of what they did; most Japanese who >hate Koreans are simply racist.

If Koreans hate the actual individuals who were alive during the 1910-1945 occupation then yes. If Koreans hate today's Japanese who had nothing to do with it, then it's completely racist. Those people are simply using their version of history as an excuse to justify their racism.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

I am the son of a US War Vet that fought the Japanese in 8 major land battles during the Second World War. My Father while he was alive felt that it is time to move on. I believe it is time to move on. The Koreans need to move on. The Koreans need to stop acting like babies. What happened in the past cannot be changed. Accept this and work towards a better world.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

And why did Koreans start this negative campeign against the rising sun flag so recently? Don't you find this odd?

True. Didn't have a problem during the World Baseball Classic in 2009 where there were many ensign flags during the finals against Korea (see the back stop crowd when Darvish recorded the last out).

http://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/x1konno/GALLERY/show_image.html?id=37387853&no=8

Like I said in a similar somewhat related article, the Koreans will almost always come up with something because such nonsense are never criticized as much in their own country but are applauded for doing so.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

This is ridiculous. Flags don't hurt people. My sisters bought me a shirt with the Japanese wartime flag in Spain, and I had no idea that it was a "wartime flag". I didn't even know that there is such a thing as wartime flag.

Comparing this flag to the Nazi flag is an exaggeration. The Nazi were exterminating millions of helpless people in the name of pure hate. After the failure of Warsaw uprising in 1944, Polish capital was nearly burned to the ground, which was a personal revenge of Hitler, who said "Warsaw has to be pacified, that is, razed to the ground." Every single building in the city, every living person was supposed to be destroyed. If you want to imagine yourself the scale of the terror, there is a short clip called "City of ruins" which is a simulation of a plane flight over the destroyed city). The poems of Jan Bugaj who took part in the 1944 uprising move me to tears. I don't think the Japanese were as cruel in their acts.

But more importantly, Japan never really had an open fight with European countries. Even when Poland declared war on Japan (which was quite silly), it was refused and no actions were taken. And people from Europe don't really associate the sunrise flag with WW2. It is not offensive to us.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Most of these are arguments that are identical to those of the Zaitokukai. Japanese can and should understand that the fear and threat felt by Koreans and Chinese are continually reinforced not merely by political deployments within their own countries, but by numerous actions - nationalist street demonstrations and constant zig zagging, backpedaling and truly ridiculous apologia for war atrocities proposed by Japanese officials and educators - that belie all the gestures of reconciliation and reawaken the horrors of memory; and not 500 year old incidents either, but immense suffering in the lifetimes of parents and grandparents. The great German philosophical, historical and critical writer, Walter Benjamin, said, "It is not dreams of liberated grandchildren that drive men and women to rebel, but memories of enslaved ancestors." You can praise imperialism for bringing the world together, but the victims whose families were slaughtered and denigrated should not be expected to think of it that way. She asked; the store complied - most likely because there was a level of agreement between them about the past, and about how it is being remembered today. A near-century of militarism and occupation, ending with digging bloody, anonymous graves for millions of "others" will not be forgotten, regardless of whether you wish it to be. The immaturity here is all on those who think the recent past is irrelevant, or gone, because you'd like not to be reminded of it.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

They should have included denunciation of Japan's wartime past in the constitution and banned nationalist symbols

Do you not believe in free speech?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wow.........I would not feel "Offended" by something so small as such. I am Korean and I think this "Korean Female Student" was an idiot for feeling so offensive to something so small.

Sooo there is an "Japanese Flag" hanging in the halls of a "College Building" want them to take it down to cause it offends you? <_<....BAKA KOREAN! (no offense to others).

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Does Racism exist in Japan? Sure does. But it's NOTHING compared to South Korea or China.

The 16 ray flag is not the equivalent of the Nazi swastika flag. It is the Japanese naval ensign currently in use by the JDSF and quite familiar to USN personnel. For Koreans to be complaining about that flag is hypocritical Young Koreans don't know that Koreans fought the allies serving under that flag.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

Enough

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Strange, I've always considered the Rising Sun flag to be closer to the Iron Cross in symbolism than the Swastika (the latter being a twisted version of something once good). Background: The Iron Cross was used in various roles during Nazi Germany, but it dates back to the 12th /13th century (depending on one's interpretation) and is still used by the modern German military.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

mz001Jun. 23, 2013 - 08:12AM JST Strange, I've always considered the Rising Sun flag to be closer to the Iron Cross in symbolism than the Swastika (the >latter being a twisted version of something once good). Background: The Iron Cross was used in various roles during >Nazi Germany, but it dates back to the 12th /13th century (depending on one's interpretation) and is still used by the >modern German military.

Very good comparison.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Japan may have a glorious history but not WWII. The Japanese military flag was a symbol of aggression and relentless killing of innocent civilians of Ear Eastern nations. Koreans, Chinese ...... including Australians. See: http://i.imgur.com/hpCA8.jpg

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I agree that the attack on the flag might have been little bit overboard, but not by much. If you look at the action itself outside the current context, yes, it was overboard. But look... the majority of Japanese are in denial about the past crimes of Japan. They don't want to admit that there were tens of thousand of comfort women that Japanese soldiers used as sex-slaves. They refuse to teach correct history about the past in their school textbooks. Then there's their totally unreasonable claims about "Dokdo" islands. Finally the outrageous actions and statements by the politician in recent times all contribute to the Asian (Chinese, Korean, and many other) resentment about Japanese symbols. Given this context, I don't think the action by the Koreans are too outrageous in comparison.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

qksand

Grouping Koreans with Chinese and Australians is misleading.

The Korean peninsula was part of Japan at the time.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Have to admit I am surprised that so few(must to a young crowd) know that the flag with the 16sun rays is very much indeed a very strong symbol of Japans actions in 1930-40s.

Its not quite up there with the swastika but its not far behind. Back in the day when you saw that flag you knew that death, destruction & brutal savagery was on its way!

And one only has to glance at right wingers in Japan to see their love of this symbol, again surprised so few here comprehend what that flag really means & represents, shoganai I suppose

1 ( +5 / -4 )

What a sad world.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Yes it is a sad world when we can sport fascist emblems in this day and age without a thought and care to the victim nations who are double victimized by denials and whitewashing of WWII atrocities. Nowhere else in the modern civilized world do you find such bold faced denials wrongs done to others by offending nations in the scale that it occurred by Japan. You don't find otherwise normal Americans sporting N-word bc of its historical origins or the Germans sporing swatstikas or denying their own war atrocities. Japan should follow suit.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

The Japanese flag of the red circular disc with 16 rays emanating from it has been used since Tokugawa era, 1859, which is originally just worship of sun from ancient times.

Why not forget something that neither of us did? its a beautiful flag

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Its all about individual's idea.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The rising sun flag is being used for long time, the Swastica was used for long time too, but not with the modification. Still... the rising sun flag is almost the same as the Japanese flag. Its a very cool flag indeed. Its not like swastica showing white supremacy and anihilation of the non perfect race.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

KMukai

It is indeed an old design BUT the way it was used in the 1930-40s has LONG changed whatever it was, now it ABSOLUTELY is a symbol of Japans savage aggression prior & during WWII.

To this day when I see old WWII footage of it or see right wing nut jobs parading it around it sends shivers down my spine! It is a scary symbol, Japan would be best served ditching it, history is a bitch aint it!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They will never let this go because every 10 or 15 years a new generation of people in countries like Korea come to the realization that they can demand money from Japan over past deeds and Japan always pays up and apologizes... when the sharks smell blood they attack....

0 ( +3 / -3 )

GW

it sends shivers down my spine! It is a scary symbol

That is another good reason that we should keep it as our naval ensign. The flag does not symbolize fascism. It just symbolizes Navy and Army of Japan.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Perhaps the Koreans should remember that many of their grandfathers fought under the Japanese flag, and were just as quick to commit war crimes as their Japanese masters. Ask any POW in a Japanese prisoner camp how many allied POWs were beaten or killed by Korean guards, snd how many more Chinese prisoners shared the same treatment.

By bringing attention to the "war crimes flag", Koreans should remembet that those who live in glass houses should not throw stones.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

She is not but I fail to understand why she, a student who was born several generations after the WW2 when the terrible things she stated as a reason for being offended happened, got so emotional as to ask the removal of a flag used in an advertising campaign. This was no political campaign, and it was carried out in and by a third side country.

That is the point of HISTORY , We should not forget so it won't happen again. She is against the sign , not the Japanese culture and Japanese people. Like what I kept on saying over and over again, so many lives were taken under this sign and so many unsolved crimes against humanity under the blessing of that flag. Maybe she knows some people or relatives who suffered under the Japanese empire, or she is speaking in behalf of the victims. it's foolish to say that what Japanese Empire did was minor compare to what Nazi's , whoever says that doesn't know the history. The whole world were focused on Europe during world war 2 because the countries involved there are more famous than the asian nations. So many untold stories .Yes Japan maybe paid millions of money to the Korean government, So you think Money is the solution to fix the problems or damages left by war? It doesnt mean that Japan paid millions so we should just forget the past and move on, NO we should not forget. That's the baggage that Japan has to take for starting the war before wether we like it or not, And for your information thousands of people are still seeking justice who suffered under that Sign.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

nemurenaijin

Maybe she knows some people or relatives who suffered under the Japanese empire, or she is speaking in behalf of the victims.

Don't think so, at least not according to what she had wrote later as you can see in the article. She wrote "patriotic feelings had deepened." and nothing what you dreamed up.

You had been trying to spin your own opinion as if they are fact. The flag had been use after right after the war like the logo of Asahi Shimbun and yet as many had posted it had been quite recently that the Koreans and ONLY the Koreans that had started to complain.

http://www.geocities.jp/kazetaro2002/6064.jpg

Get over it.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

OssanAmerica Jun. 22, 2013 - 10:37PM JST If Koreans hate the actual individuals who were alive during the 1910-1945 occupation then yes. If Koreans hate today's Japanese who had nothing to do with it, then it's completely racist.

Anytime we venture into politics it's nearly impossible for Japanese person to acknowledge anything bad that Japan may have done. Or he/she will just insists that Japan has apologized several times, and there's no more they can do. Yes, the Japanese did some really bad things during war to neighboring countries. The men who did those awful things are mostly dead now, and their grandkids mostly couldn't even tell you when the atomic bombs were dropped. Modern day Japanese people mostly are clueless in regards to what personally went on during war, and who or why participated in the mass killing. The Japanese just do not share these things with their descendants and they don't talk about this sort of stuff with each other. I just don't think asking their children and grandchildren over it is going to help much, considering they know very little or next to nothing about it.

Most Japanese families never talked about the war or what happened. Japanese people will tell you they were taught about some stuff regarding WWII in school, even the bad things Japan did. I do wonder to what extent they discuss it and if there is any significant bias on the teacher's part, because most Japanese rejects suggestions that the Japanese did terrible things and look at themselves as victims of war.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

It doesn't matter when this flag was made, what matter is how it was used and this flag with the red rising sun with bands of expanding rays across the white canvas was used exclusively by Imperial Soldiers as there symbol of domination and power and to the people invaded by Japan it was a symbol of destruction and hostility, hence has a similar effects if not the same as the swastika. Unfortunately or not this flag is forever linked to brutal atrocities committed by Japan all over Asia. Obviously to many Japanese this flag is still part of their proud heritage and tradition but must understand and respect it had and continues to have totally different meaning to people outside of Japan.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

what matter is how it was used and this flag with the red rising sun with bands of expanding rays across the white canvas was used exclusively by Imperial Soldiers as there symbol of domination and power

As many have expressed before, this is a historically inaccurate statement.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

fds

they're just jealous that nobody wants to use the korean flag.

I second that.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

sfjp330Jun. 25, 2013 - 04:04AM JST "OssanAmerica Jun. 22, 2013 - 10:37PM JST If Koreans hate the actual individuals who were alive during the 1910-1945 occupation then yes. If Koreans hate today's Japanese who had nothing to do with it, then it's completely racist.

Anytime we venture into politics it's nearly impossible for Japanese person to acknowledge anything bad that Japan may have done. Or he/she will just insists that Japan has apologized several times, and there's no more they can do. Yes, the Japanese did some really bad things during war to neighboring countries. The men who did those awful things are mostly dead now, and their grandkids mostly couldn't even tell you when the atomic bombs were dropped. Modern day Japanese people mostly are clueless in regards to what personally went on during war, and who or why participated in the mass killing. The Japanese just do not share these things with their descendants and they don't talk about this sort of stuff with each other. I just don't think asking their children and grandchildren over it is going to help much, considering they know very little or next to nothing about it.

Most Japanese families never talked about the war or what happened. Japanese people will tell you they were taught about some stuff regarding WWII in school, even the bad things Japan did. I do wonder to what extent they discuss it and if there is any significant bias on the teacher's part, because most Japanese rejects suggestions that the Japanese did terrible things and look at themselves as victims of war.

I hate to break this to you but that's pretty much the way it is over most the world. The Japanese civilians indeed were victims, as were all civilians in all countries. What the Japanese military were doing in WWII was occurring overseas outside of Japan, and all news was heavily censored by a fascist military government. The Japanese people did not even know that Japan was losing the war after 1942 and were shocked when US planes started flying over their cities. Sorry but my statement stands, hating those who perpetrated crimes and suffering is one thing. But to blame their descendants who had nothing to do with it is racist. Your long post attempting to justify Korean racism not withstanding.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The thread that never dies.

I remember going to a symposium held by some Chinese citizens in the States around 97-98. They were also peddling two books "Rape of Nanking" and another one about a German priest, I believe, who witnessed the horror. I bought both. Showed the pics to my wife after coming here, she had no idea.

When Japan finally decides to come clean, and teach this in their history books, then these passions/anger may be left to history. Until then, expect more of the same.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

OssanAmerica Jun. 25, 2013 - 08:17AM JST I hate to break this to you but that's pretty much the way it is over most the world.

Does neighbors of German still demand apologies from German and keep on stirring up past memories? Does neighbors of Japan still demand apologies from Japan and keep on stirring up past memories? It doesn't take genius to figure out who did a better job and why is that?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Who has the courage or wherewithal to unilateraly begin de-escalation? Whoever does is the winner in my book. It requires not insisting on a tat for every tit. It requires not judging oneself by number of petty battles won, but by the ability to negotiate and be a leader.

Past history cannot be changed, but the future is open to any possibilities.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It doesn't take genius to figure out who did a better job and why is that?

Ian Buruma's excellent book "The Wages of Guilt" does a good job of comparing how Germany and Japan have dealt with the issues of war responsibility. A lot of countries are in denial for various aspects of their past. Unfortunately the Cold War made it easy for Japan to rehabilitate a lot of sleazy right-wing figures like the current prime minister's grandfather (Nobusuke Kishi) who should have been consigned to history's ash heap.

But this whole situation is never going to end without a comprehensive agreement by which Japan will address its past wrongs unequivocally and as a quid pro quo China and Korea will agree to reduce the anti-Japanese tone of their education. I remember a few years ago when a subway station in Seoul featured an exhibition of anti-Japanese posters drawn by 3rd graders. You can't have an education system with government-sponsored hate in the curriculum and ever expect things to get better.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@SamuraiBlue Second in a earlier post of yours you wrote that the flag insults her nation Republic of Korea Please review my posts again, I never said this

Why would you guys think that this flag is never different from NAZI's ? because it was made before WW2? it's not about when it was made but what it represented and what it did. Yes for Japanese people it means something else, but for their victims during the War it symbolized oppression and war crimes. It's pathetic to say that what Japan did during the war was minor compare to what Nazi did. The Historians are unfair most of the time, during WW2 everybody is focused on Europe and Russia, because the countries involved there are bigger, FRANCE, UK, ITALY , RUSSIA ETC.... the media is more focused on that region. If you compare it to boxing, Europe is the Main fight and asia was undercard. Terrible. Media only focused on Asia after Germany surrendered and during Pearl Harbour. The countries like Phil. Korea, Taiwan and China have more shocking stories to tell that until now it's still untold since it was not in the attention of the Western Historians . The point is What the empire of Japan did, was the same as what Nazi did. The red swastika flag represented the Nazi Germany and This flag represented the old Empire of Japan.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

nemurenaijin

Explain to me the difference the insignia below and the Kyokujitsuki.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/62/Bundeswehr_Kreuz_Black.svg/400px-Bundeswehr_Kreuz_Black.svg.png

The Iron Cross had been in use by the Germans and is still in use today as same as the Kyokujituki as many poster had explained above. You just don't read what they are posting because your mind is set based on the what you had been indoctrinated. I suggest you go through a deprogramming session.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

SamuraiBlue

@Samuraibllue

*Don't think so, at least not according to what she had wrote later as you can see in the article. She wrote "patriotic feelings had deepened." and nothing what you dreamed up.I

Well how well do you know this girl ? or you are just assuming things about her by these articles? do you know her back story? Ok maybe this girl doesn't have a relative who were victims of the war, but is it a hindrance to voice out an opinion? so if you don;'t have a relative who was a victim of the war means you are not entitled to voice out what you think can offend others? Ok let's say she doesn't have relatives or friends who suffered under the Japanese empire, but let's talk about the victims of the war, War crimes were committed under the blessing of this flag, so you are now implying that The Empire of Japan was innocent of these acts? yes Asahi Shinbun used it, because it is in Japan, obviously the Japanese point of view for this flag is different from the countries they colonized. so you are bashing her for writing "patriotic feelings had deepened."? how about the anti Korean rallies in Okubo and these noisy right wingers driving around the city bashing foreigners WAVING and using this FLAG?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

SamuriBlue

The big difference between the Iron Cross and the Kyokujitsuki is in what these flags symbolize in "today." Germany has sincerely and convincingly been repentant of their wrong doings to such an extent that they would today never think of denying (or whitewashing) their past war crimes. They have had the moral courage to face up to their moral failings and are collectively determined to never let such crimes of humanity never occur on their soil ever again. Japan, on the other hand, continues to deny and minimize their wrongdoings. They continue to misrepresent history in their textbooks. They continue to minimize, if not completely deny, their involvement with sexual slavery. Their politicians continue to make outrageous statements. Yes, they have apologized, many times- but their apologies are not sincere. Anyone could verbalize an apology. What matters is whether these apologies are offered in sincerity, true regret, and determined to never let such crimes occur again. But any objective observer could readily see this is not the case. Please don't forget that flags are "living symbols." They symbolize the Japanese people in the present. And the Japanese people are not repentant of the past crimes but outright defiant. The German people are the opposite. That's where the big difference lies between what the Iron Cross and Kyokujitsuki today. These symbols point to the two diametrically different attitudes that characterizes the two nations toward their past war crimes.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@SamuraiBlue

I dont need deprogramming, you need to accept the true lessons of history and accept the fact the old Japanese Empire ( symbolized by this flag) was an "Ally"of Hitler's NAZI , therefore to say that the WW2 old Japan Empire was not as bad as the NAZI is foolish. Many of you are saying that koreans should get over the past, but in this report this girl is against the old japanese empire flag and not the whole and present Japan , but many of you assumed already that she is bashing Japan and started to bring out comments about Koreans etc .that has nothing to do about this article ? Now who is barrying hatred and haven't move on then?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

@Grandfield

The big difference between the Iron Cross and the Kyokujitsuki is in what these flags symbolize in "today." Germany has sincerely and convincingly been repentant of their wrong doings to such an extent that they would today never think of denying (or whitewashing) their past war crimes. They have had the moral courage to face up to their moral failings and are collectively determined to never let such crimes of humanity never occur on their soil ever again. Japan, on the other hand, continues to deny and minimize their wrongdoings. They continue to misrepresent history in their textbooks. They continue to minimize, if not completely deny, their involvement with sexual slavery. Their politicians continue to make outrageous statements. Yes, they have apologized, many times- but their apologies are not sincere. Anyone could verbalize an apology. What matters is whether these apologies are offered in sincerity, true regret, and determined to never let such crimes occur again. But any objective observer could readily see this is not the case. Please don't forget that flags are "living symbols." They symbolize the Japanese people in the present. And the Japanese people are not repentant of the past crimes but outright defiant. The German people are the opposite. That's where the big difference lies between what the Iron Cross and Kyokujitsuki today. These symbols point to the two diametrically different attitudes that characterizes the two nations toward their past war crimes.

While I don't think anybody will deny that Germany put its head a lot closer to the ground than Japan ...

1) The logic followed by the supporters of the girl here is that even if a symbol represents much more than a particular "bad" period, if it has been used in a "bad enough" period, looking at it causes sufficient reasonable trauma (as opposed to irrational paranoia) to its victims (which apparently include the grandsons/daughters of said victims...) that they have a valid claim for asking it to be removed.

If we accept this logic, then the presence or absence of apologies, or their perceived sincerity, doesn't change whether it is used in a "bad enough" period. In this sense, the Iron Cross will be equivalent to the Kyokujitsuki.

2) Without being too much of a Japanese apologist, I will point out that Germany is a real oddball. The denial / omission / minimization / interpretation-in-the-most-positive-light of atrocities is hardly a monopoly of Japan. All countries try to present their history to their children in the most positive light they can get away with. For the most part, this is not challenged, and everyone more or less less understands the "rules of the road". If that's so, the thing most unique about Japan is not how unapologetic it is, but how intolerant certain other countries, and how Japan actually kind of indulges them.

3) Japan is not Germany. But Korea and China (and to a much lesser extent other Asian powers) are not Europe either. Germany had a lot of implied reassurance that apology will not lead to harm (mostly the Cold War meaning they need Germany and its land forces as a bulwark against the Warsaw Pact). K and C basically wait to exploit any apology as an reason for money and other concessions. K, in particular, wants to overturn an entire treaty.

Ultimately, government's act for their nation's best interest.

1) If calculations recommend best interest = head to the floor dogeza and they don't do it (for reason of pride, probably), they are treasonous.

2) On the other hand, if calculations recommend minimal apology or even defiance, a government that does a dogeza out of the "goodness of their heart" or "conscience" or any other such BS is equally unfit to be governing.

Westerners, IMO, consider and analyze Possibility 1 very much, and Possibility 2 too little.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

nemurenaijin

this girl is against the old japanese empire flag

You really do not understand it after all the discussion. The flag of Empire of Japan is the same flag as the national flag of Japan today, and is called Hinomaru. The Rising Sun Flag is the naval ensign of Imperial Navy of Japan as well as the Maritime Self Defense Force of Japan today. I am afraid your argument is baseless.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@CHECHO

Japan's official flag now that the world recognize is the plain white with red circle in the middle. what the Navy is using is a totally different from the IMPERIAL JAPANESE ARMY FLAG, the Navy is Sun disc with 16 rays on a white field, with the disc skewed to the left side. However the flag of Imperial Army of Japan used from 1870 - 1945 has a Centered sun disc with 16 rays on a white field. It looks the same but different. You should understand that flag designs are very very specific even the colors.You should do more research about the Japanese flag.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

What's being protested is the design that is featured in both the imperial japanese army flag and the current naval flag being sported in full ignorance of the cultural and historical considerations. To plaster that on t-shirts for commercial sale in grossly ignorant and offensive.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

sfjp330Jun. 25, 2013 - 09:09AM JST "OssanAmerica Jun. 25, 2013 - 08:17AM JST I hate to break this to you but that's pretty much the way it is over most the world. Does neighbors of German still demand apologies from German and keep on stirring up past memories? Does >neighbors of Japan still demand apologies from Japan and keep on stirring up past memories? It doesn't take genius >to figure out who did a better job and why is that?

If Germany had neighbors who taught Anti-Germany sentiment in their schools and made it a part of their diplomatic and political policies, then yes, they would be demanding apologies, rejecting them and claiming Germany apologized. It doesn't take a genius to figure this out.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

OssanAmerica Jun. 28, 2013 - 06:30AM JST If Germany had neighbors who taught Anti-Germany sentiment in their schools and made it a part of their diplomatic and political policies, then yes, they would be demanding apologies, rejecting them and claiming Germany apologized. It doesn't take a genius to figure this out.

Wonder why neigbors of Germany stays calm. Well, do you see German Chancellor and 168 representatives of German goverment go and pray for the remains of Class A Nazi's and their millions of German soldiers? You can't say the same for Japan. Japan is a different story of being the victim. Why did Abe visited Yasukuni shrine last year and 168 representives of Japan goverment went to pray for 14 Class A and 2 million Imperial Soldiers? Every year, and for many decades, visit by top Japanese goverment officials to Yasukuni has not changed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

She wrote "patriotic feelings had deepened."

Patriotic and Nationalism are totally different and 180 degree opposed, everybody should be PATRIOT to honor your country and citizenship but NATIONALISM is the worst thing you can bring to your country : "Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; Nationalism, when hate for people other than your own comes first."

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Flags are overrated

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A product of korean goverment brainwash. I got tired of the koreans bringing up bad memories just damaging established friendly relashionships. Quit the pessimistic mindset already. If this is the habbit of koreans, then theres no wonder why North and south keeps fighting, duh.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

sveinyves Quit the pessimistic mindset already. If this is the habbit of koreans, then theres no wonder why North and south keeps fighting, duh

Will you say the same thing to Jews when they asked to stop hanging or using Nazi's SWASTIKA signs on anything?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@nemurenaijin SWASTIKA : Symbol of Nazis adopted by Nazis. Rising Sun : Symbol of Sun. Being used since 1870.

It's not a symbol of imperialism and fascism. Thus I think it doesn't have to be removed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@zomafumi It's not a symbol of imperialism and fascism It's not about the Literal symbol of the flag that matters , but the crimes did of what it represented. So you are implying that the crimes did by the old Empire of Japan was not as terrible as the Nazi's? The Empire of Japan was not Imperialist for you? come on. This flag supported the swastika no matter what or how pure the design is , what it represented to all the victims are the same. So many human beings were killed and murdered under the belssing of this flag,For the victims of war it symbolizes War Crimes of the Imperial Japan , so people need to consider the victims and Japan has to deal with the baggage of what happened from the past wether they like it or not. Why is it so hard and big deal to just not hang it or post it around? Japan has new flag anyway. Why just use the official Flag that the world recognize so it's safe from criticism? people should consider both parties.

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@nemurenaijin

So do you think that the scale of war crime is measure of removing a flag? If that logic would be valid, then it's unfair discrimination against Japan not to accuse the military flag of other nations that have committed war crime during the war.

Swastika was banned because it's the symbol of Nazis which is the extreme right political party. It's far different from Rising Sun that has been used since 1870.

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@nemurenaijin Will you say the same thing to Jews when they asked to stop hanging or using Nazi's SWASTIKA signs on anything?

There is no way that Koreans were in the same situation as the Jews. Korea was part of Japan and Koreans were treated as Japanese citizens. There was no plan to exterminate Koreans, like Germany did with the Jewish people. The Korean population doubled under the Japanese rule. In addition many Koreans volunteerd in the Japanese military. Some of them were even executed as war-criminals. So stop victimizing yourself and face the fact. Koreans were more comparable with Austrians who were seen as collaborators of Nazi Germany, and with the Italians for being side-switchers.

On top of that this flag has nothing to do with Korea, as Korea was not in war with Japan.

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Please people like black_jack & others, don't write here w/ stupidities. Wasting columns here.

TO those sympathizers of : "You see, it is funny Koreans never mentions German National Anthem to be a problem, although it was USED during Nazi era." .......

Japanese never apologized for anything. Never admit their fault. Only blames the others or the victims. Germans have apologized. Germans didn't exactly do what Japanese did to Asia, to Koreans. So do not compare.

I'm surprised not to hear any repents from these commentators. It's all that guiltiness, that dislike hearing about Korean mentioning Japaneses' past sins that were never apologized for.

No matter how long these comments may be, the fact remains. Truth remains. Your Karma is here. Repent a little. Like the rest of us. Apologizing for huge sins/errors is not a Japanese thing to do??? Learn from Germans a little. Teach your children with correct history, publish truthful text books.....etc..etc, Stop being so jealous of everyone who's a bit better than you Japanese, when neighbors do a little better at times.

PS: Of course not every Japanese is like the ones writing here. Thank God. The point is to improve civilization for the future, for future of your children & paying back the Karma would not hurt anyone. It's recommended.

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if you want to refute me at least try to argue based on facts not based on your wmotion. @EDFANTASY11

I was saying that Koreans were not in the same situation as the Jews. Why is this comment stupid? Explain to me based on FACTS not your emotions!

Did Japan try to exterminate Koreans from earth like the germans tried to do with the Jewish people?

The answer is "No". If you don't agree with this, you should present a fact supporting your argument.

Whether you like or not, Korea was the right arm of the Japanese empire. Many Korean soldiers in the Japanese imperial army comitted war crimes in China and tortured British POWs. It is a well known fact. That's why there were many Koreans who were executed as war criminals after the end of WWII, and they are enshrined in the Yasukuni shrine. So stop behaving as victims and face the reality. Korea was the Austria of asia, the collaborator of the Japanese Empire.

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black_jack Jun. 29, 2013 - 05:35AM JST Did Japan try to exterminate Koreans from earth like the germans tried to do with the Jewish people? The answer is "No". If you don't agree with this, you should present a fact supporting your argument.

Japanese military were just as bad as Germans during the war. Did Japan try to exterminate the Chinese? Japanese Military tried and succeeded in killing 15 million Chinese civilians. What Japan did was horrific mass killing in their neighboring countries during wartime. The fact these so-called Japanese right wing does not see wrong in what they did. These Japanese think "we only stopped abusing and killing Koreans because we lost at war". Is it really difficult to understand that the Asian countries get so upset at these?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

To sfjp330

It looks like you have difficulty in understanding my argument. I am not saying that Japan did not committed war crimes in China. I am pointing out the role of Koreans in the WWII as the collaborator of the Japanese empire, and the irony that koreans are barking the loudest against the rising sun flag of Japan as if they suffered from the Japanese military when in reality they were invading China along with their Japanese masters and committing war crimes there.

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black_jack black_jackJun. 29, 2013 - 06:07AM JST I am pointing out the role of Koreans in the WWII as the collaborator of the Japanese empire, and the irony that koreans are barking the loudest against the rising sun flag of Japan as if they suffered from the Japanese military when in reality they were invading China along with their Japanese masters and committing war crimes there.

Korea was Japan's colony from 1910 to 1945. If you wanted to survive, Korean people had no choice but to follow the Japan military leaders words. You can call it voluntary, but if any Koreans spoke against Japan or not follow instructions, your gone. What choice did Koreans have at that time? Not much different than the Jews. This was 35 years of abuse and brutal killings. Why do you think anger at Japan still runs deep in Korea? The abuses by Japan during its colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula is well documented of atrocities including mass killings of Korean civilians and human experimentation.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Then how do you explain that there were many Koreans who volunteered in the Japanese army during the early years of Sino-Japanese war and Pacific war when joining military was not forced yet.

Even if Koreans were forced to join the japanese military, does this give them the right to kill innocent Chinese civilians and torture POWs?

The reason why Koreans hate Japan is the fruit of anti-Japanese education conducted by the Korean government to unite people and distract their attention from the internal problems. This anti-Japanese feeling is also being stirred and used by the polititians to gain votes and distract people's attention from corruption in their politics.

Another reason why Koreans hate Japan so much is because of their insecurity and inferiority complex against Japan.

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black_jackJun. 29, 2013 - 06:44AM JST Then how do you explain that there were many Koreans who volunteered in the Japanese army during the early years of Sino-Japanese war and Pacific war when joining military was not forced yet.

In 1940, the population on the Korea Peninsula was 23,500,000. Out of that, the estimated 250,000 Koreans, which is LESS THAN ONE PERCENT of the population were forced or volunteered to Japanese military. I doubt majority of these Korean men had much choice. You can see from the history how brutal Japanese military leaders were at that time. What if you were a Korean men and decided not to serve, what do you think is the end results of refusal? Kill your family?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Sfjp330

The Korean applicants exceeded the quota as much as 60 times in some years. Hence, your imagined scenario does not make sense.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

All readers back on topic please. Posts that do not focus on the story will be removed.

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nigelboy Jun. 29, 2013 - 07:06AM JST The Korean applicants exceeded the quota as much as 60 times in some years. Hence, your imagined scenario does not make sense.

Your dreaming, 60 times in some years? I think you need to do some research and look at the peak point in 1943, and it's substantially lower than your imaginary figures. I already know what the figure is.

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62.4 times in 1942. The point that black jack is making is that Koreans at that time were participants and therefore, don't get to jump the fence on the other side. The student is a typical byproduct of the warped education in Korea.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Ok, let's go back to the topic as suggested by the moderator.

Koreans just started negative campaign against the rising flag recently, especially after London Olympics when a Korean soccer player was about to lose medal for showing a political message saying "Dokdo is Korean territory" after victory against Japan. Then the Korean olympic committee pointed out that the design of the Japanese gymnastic uniform was based on the rising sun flag which is offensive accoriding to them. They used this tactic to distract the attention of IOC from the incidence. Since then, Koreans start sending spam e-mails to many companies and organizations in the world who were using the design of the rising sun flag in their products. Their negative campaign was encouraged by their media and accelerated to the extent that they started accusing every advertisement or design that includes radial rays or anything similar even if they did not look like the rising sun flag. Before the London Olympic, Koreans had no problem with this flag. The Japanese soccer and baseball fans always used this flag in international competition even in Korea to cheer their teams. Koreans didn't have any problem with that. Korean navy conducted many military training with the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force which uses this flag on their ships. Koreans did not have problem with that. To me it looks like Koreans just came up with a stupid excuse to bash Japan and to satisfy their inferirity complex against Japan, just like the stupid argument of the name of "Sea of Japan / East Sea". The best thing that we can do is to ignore them and not create a precedence by succumbing to their requests. Otherwise, they will start to complain about the national flag of Japan by saying, for example, "Japanese flag is the symbol of imperialism and colonialism, and hence should be banned just like Nazi Swastika blah, blah", or anything that symbolizes Japan. Koreans should realize that they look very immature and insecure bunch to outsiders by trying to find whatever they can come up with to critisize Japan, and should better start using their percistence behavior to improve their economy, politics and promotes the unification process.
2 ( +3 / -1 )

Nigelboy, Even if the Korean conceded all the items you pointed out, he is still left with: forced labor, Comfort Women, Unit 731, Kanto Massacre, and general torture and massacre of independence movement organizers. And as the Korean pointed out in Part IV of the series, Japan has not done a particularly good job apologizing for them.

When a anti-Japanese rallies took place in Korea in 1919, a declaration of independence was read in Seoul. It is estimated that 2 million people took part in these rallies. The Japanese violently suppressed the protests and close to 50,000 were arrested, 7,500 killed and 16,000 wounded. After the suppression of the uprising, some of the aspects of Japanese rule considered most objectionable to Koreans were removed.

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*To me it looks like Koreans just came up with a stupid excuse to bash Japan and to satisfy their inferirity complex against Japan,... The best thing that we can do is to ignore them.... Koreans should realize that they look very immature and insecure bunch to outsiders by trying to find whatever they can come up with to critisize Japan.

Black_Jack, Judging from the reactions of the Japanese to this flag incident, the impression that I get, as an American, is not that the Koreans are acting out of an inferiority complex or that they look immature and insecure. It's exactly the opposite. It's the Japanese reaction that seem insecure and immature. The reason that Japanese people cannot simply "ignore" this incident as you suggest, is precisely because they feel threatened by their own decline (economically, politically, and culturally) and feeling so insecure about other Asian countries (like China and Korea) gaining greater influence. That's what seems to be triggering these ultra right-wing reactions. To the outsider, it doesn't look pretty. It looks immature.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The main problem here, as JanesBlonde and others have already pointed out, is the anti-Japanese education Koreans receive from school courtesy of the Korean government. Normally people who go and study overseas away from their home country and culture expand and broaden their world vision as they experience cultures different from their own. However, the brainwashing and hate Koreans receive at an early age become so deeply imprinted that they carry it on to their adult years. So it's not surprising this student acted the way she did.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZHy2NDU9R8

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The main problem here, as JanesBlonde and others have already pointed out, is the anti-Japanese education Koreans receive from school courtesy of the Korean government. Normally people who go and study overseas away from their home country and culture expand and broaden their world vision as they experience cultures different from their own. However, the brainwashing and hate Koreans receive at an early age become so deeply imprinted that they carry it on to their adult years. So it's not surprising this student acted the way she did.

Genjuro,

If there is any "brainwashing" here, it's not the Koreans but the Japanese. For clearly, the facts of history are on the side of Koreans and the world community that have already acknowledged the Japanese war crimes. Only the Japanese are in denial. Notice it's not simply the Koreans who are reacting negatively to how Japanese politicians and the ultra right-wingers have been acting childishly in recent times, it's China, Korea, rest of Asia, and, yes, the commonly held world wide opinion. To blame this on Korean education is to forget the fact that it is Japan that is whitewashing their war crimes and distorting it in their educational system and textbooks.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The reason why Koreans hate Japan is the fruit of anti-Japanese education conducted by the Korean government to unite people and distract their attention from the internal problems. This anti-Japanese feeling is also being stirred and used by the polititians to gain votes and distract people's attention from corruption in their politics.

Another reason why Koreans hate Japan so much is because of their insecurity and inferiority complex against Japan.

@black_jack I agree. The second reason you stated is also telling. There are other Asian countries who also suffered under the Japanese during the war such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, etc. Yet these countries don't have anti-Japanese education in elementary schools like Korea does and their younger generation are more inclined to move on from the past than to dwell in it obsessively like the Koreans do. This speaks volumes about Korea and Koreans; it's no wonder nobody takes them seriously.

2 ( +4 / -3 )

@black_jack I agree. The second reason you stated is also telling. There are other Asian countries who also suffered under the Japanese during the war such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, etc. Yet these countries don't have anti-Japanese education in elementary schools like Korea does and their younger generation are more inclined to move on from the past than to dwell in it obsessively like the Koreans do. This speaks volumes about Korea and Koreans; it's no wonder nobody takes them seriously.

Genuro, There is a simple reason why the Koreans are taking the lead in this flag controversy . Please remember that while Philippines, Vietnam, and Indonesia were occupied for few years in the 1940's Korea was forcibly annexed (under false legal pretext) for 36 years. In comparison, Vietnam was occupied during 1940-1945, Philippines (1942-1945), Indonesia (1942-1945). Korea, more than any other of these Asian countries, experienced full and systematic brutalities and atrocities under the Japanese government (followed by China). Therefore, they are in the best position to criticize Japanese war crimes with complete legitimacy. The worldwide community looks to them to take the lead in this matter and we are grateful for their voice. Please take time to study your own imperialist history and war crimes.

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To Grandfield,

Again and again you Korean-sympethizers are so desperately trying to talk as if there was a war between Japan and Korea or as if Korea was fighting against Japan. I am going to repeat and emphasize here again that there was no war between Japan and Korea and thus there is no war-crime issue between the two nations. So stop including Korea among the countries that were fighting against the Japanese empire. When it comes to war crimes in WWII, Koreans are also one of those who committed them (in China and against POWs captured by Japanese military). So Korea is in no position to talk about war crimes of WII. They are one of those who need to apologize. And if you say that the reason of Philippines, Vietnam etc. for being less anti-Japanese than Koreans is due to the short periof of time of Japanese occupation, then how do you explain that Taiwan which experienced a longer period of Japanese occupation than Korea does not hold such grudge? How do you explain that those south-east asian countries that were european colonies for a few centuries do not hate their former colonial power even without receiving any kind of apology or compensation? It's all because of anti-Japanese education or brainwash that Koreans receive from early ages. Korean government needs japan as a skapegoat to distract the attention of the people from their internal problems.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

black_jack,

Your reaction to the flag controversy is deficient in these four ways: 1) Have you heard of the Korean Independence Movement? Have you heard of the March 1st Movement of 1919? Have you heard of the Korean government in exile (KPG)? And have you heard of the Korean Liberation Army? Do you not know that Japan-Korea Annexation Treaty, 1910, as well as previous treaties were declared void after the war because they were obtained under threat of force and without the legal consent of the Korean emperor? Japanese government officially acknowledged this point in the Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and Republic of Korea (1965). This is a historical fact. 2) Once you recognize the above point, the rest of of your claims make minimal sense. Yes, there were Korean soldiers that participated in the Japanese war crimes. But their participation were as individuals not as representatives of the Korean government. Rather, they acted on behalf of the Japanese army and government. Some of them were tried an killed as war criminals, and rightly so. However, they were condemned as part of the Japanese army and government. To imply that Korea, as a state, must apologize for these individuals who acted on behalf of the Japanese government is completely irrational and ridiculous. 3) As far as Taiwan is concerned, it has a significantly different history from Korea. While Korea had a long history of sovereign existence, Taiwan was a colonized island beginning with Dutch(1622-1662) and Spanish Formosa (1626-1642), to Kingdom of Tungning (1662-1683), and the Qing rule (1683-1895). Fifty years of Japanese colonization was simply another stage in their colonized history. Coupled with this, it is the immediate failure of the Kuomindang that perpetuated this colonial legacies after WWII that has led to the relative antipathy of the Japanese rule compared to other Asian countries. 4) As I mentioned in a former posts, to blame the Korean educational system or the government for their legitimate concerns concerning Japan's distortions of history, white-washing of their crimes against "comfort women" (sexual-slavery), outrageous statements made by politicians, and their refusal to teach correct history in their textbooks (in other words "brainwashing" their children), and their ultra right-wing reactions that is ostracized by the world-wide community, all point to their general moral deficiencies and immaturity. Before you go ahead and blame the Koreans, it will serve you well to re-examine your own checkered history and it's relation to the present flag controversy.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

genjuro & anti-Koreans here :

Better go home & study a little. Or meditate too. The fact that you sound so angry is that because you are so guilty about the truth that you cannot mention and digest.

Asians or Westerners or Americans or any other nationalities do not like evil acts on this earth. Japan is the only Asian country that tried to attack so many other countries including USA in this history. For your info. In case you don't want to admit.

NO ONE wants to be any COLLABO w/ anyone, Japanese in this case, on this earth. Unless forced.

The rest of us, we are trying to be civil to Japanese inspite of the past. So be like Germans a little & apologize ...... anti-Koreans here. Repent & apologize a little like the rest of us. Japanese are so special that you cannot apologize at all ???

Just reminding in case you lost your senses w/ all that anger.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Maybe store was not selling the flag? Not profitable?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well, I'm glad some ranting & raving has subsided.

I love German perfectionism, love my German friends and for their attributes that are positively excellent. I love sushi and the beautiful aspects of Japanese & culture, like rest of other civilizations that has to offer.

As Jewish generations can vividly remember of the recent past, so do others Chinese & Koreans. It's just too humongous to 'move on' just like that for anyone. Jewish people also won't forget it for long long time. It can never be easily forgotten. Certainly not yet. It may take a long long time to forget. Moving on would certainly not be easy for Koreans when Koreans could read such comments here that are very demeaning & sinister. Some may be able to forgive fast but certainly not easily forgotten. At least not yet.

To this day, continuously, Germans are trying to make up for the past in various ways. For their future generations to come. Germans are repectable in these senses. That is the right attitude, right approach. Recommend it to all.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Koreans were among the Imperial Japan army who massacred Chinese therefore Koreans are still called Gaoli Bangzi by Chinese. (Please check Gaoli Bangzi on Wikipedia) Koreans were not victims but collaborators.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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