politics

Hotel in Seoul refuses to hold party by Japanese embassy for SDF

78 Comments

In the latest sign of tension between South Korea and Japan, the luxury Lotte Hotel in Seoul has refused to hold a reception by the Japanese embassy to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Japan Self-Defense Forces.

Hotel officials said the party, which was scheduled for Friday night and which is usually held each year at the Lotte, was canceled Thursday in the interest of public safety, the Sankei Shimbun reported. It quoted a hotel spokesperson as saying they had received threats and protests for agreeing to host the party, and were concerned about demonstrations. The reception will now be held at the Japanese embassy.

On Thursday, an editorial in the Dong-a Ilbo newspaper was critical of the reception. Editorial writer Han Ki-heung said: "The Self-Defense Forces use the Rising Sun flag. Red rays stretch out from a red circle representing the sun. The military flag, which was used under Japanese militarism, was waved at the forefront of invasion. It is natural that the Asian countries invaded by Japan are sensitive to the flag. Japan`s Maritime Self-Defense Forces still use the naval flag of the Japanese empire and the Ground Self-Defense Forces use the flag with eight rays, a slight variation from the old flag with 16 rays."

Han went on to say: "The Japanese Embassy to Korea holds the 60th anniversary of the Self-Defense Forces at Lotte Hotel, Seoul. It sent invitations to some 500 people including Korean dignitaries from different sectors and foreign diplomats, but few Koreans are likely to attend the event due to the strained relationship between Korea and Japan. Is Japan holding such an event in the middle of Seoul because it does not know what is going on or does not care about it at all?"

In Tokyo, Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida told a news conference Friday that the Lotte Hotel's decision to cancel the reception at short notice was deplorable, Sankei Shimbun reported. He said that the embassy, which often uses the Lotte for various events, has made an official protest to the hotel.

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Doesn't that contravene the Korean Constitution? That's discriminatory, right?

10 ( +17 / -7 )

Park's campaign of hostility towards Japan is going come and eat her one day.

10 ( +18 / -8 )

This event has already been paid for by the Japanese Embassy. What makes you think Lotte is losing profit by cancelling?

Generally the venue provides a complete refund if they cancel for anything other than catastrophic weather or actual rioting. I can't see lotte not losing money on this - they will also be on the hook for event staff, catering, and paying anyone they've contracted out (unless they can fill a 500 seat hall on short notice)

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Lotte is a fabulously wealthy Korean company that made most of their money in Japan.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

China’s overtures to South Korea — including the Seoul visit — play into its larger ambitions to build a China-centered network of alliances that sidesteps the U.S. and Japan

From another article on this site http://www.japantoday.com/category/opinions/view/expedience-pragmatism-shape-new-asian-alliances

From that perspective, you will start seeing more and more of these little signs of "divergence" between South Korea and Japan and the CCP's troll army drumming up how "nasty" Japan was 70 years ago. Of course they have to make the South Koreans forget China is responsible for the existence of a North Korea in the first place.

As far as I'm concerned, I'll start to avoid Lotte products like the plague and tell my friends!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Caving to the nutcases. Sad.

8 ( +16 / -8 )

Typical petty bickering by Korea. Anything to try and breathe more life into the long-dead ghosts of the past.

7 ( +16 / -9 )

I don`t know why Japan saw the need to have a 60th Anniversary Party for the JSDF in Seoul. Do they have one planned for Beijing also?

7 ( +13 / -7 )

lol, it was cancelled because some politicians wanted to show the public how anti-Japanese they are on the verge of elections of 30.7

That's all folks!

7 ( +12 / -5 )

BertieWooster

Hasn't Abe, in his infinite wisdom (sarcasm) altered the constitution so that Japan can come to the rescue of its allies (the only one being the USA)?

No, he hasn't.

He directed cabinet to make a policy change regarding the interpretation of the constitution.

Every government on Japan for the last 60 years has done this with regard to the constitution in general and article 9 in particular. Every government in the world with a constitution and a parliamentary system routinely does this when they make law.

At this point, it means absolutely NOTHING beyond a statement of intent. This is the beginning of the process - there are at least a dozen pieces of legislation that need to be proposed, amended, debated and eventually passed for the changes to become more than just an idea.

If you're going to live in Japan, please take 30 minutes and educate yourself on how the government works.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

So childish. The woman president is not helping matters, either. If Lotte hated the Japanese so much, why did they take their reservation in the first place? Good idea to boycott Lotte products. Sometimes, the Koreans get so emotional, and not think ahead of how this childish act is going to affect their businesses in Japan.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

jerseyboyJul. 11, 2014 - 11:47PM JST Ossan...what the heck does this have to do with the subject at hand? The fact that the U.S. is allies with both SK and >Japan is not relevant here. This is an SK - Japan issue, and your statement about SK becoming a "Chinese Tributory >State" is simply ludicrous hyperbole

Wrong jerseyboy, it is not just a South Korea-Japan issue because both countries are allied with the United States with the collective goal of maintain peace on the Korean Peninsula, ie; protecting South Korea. When South Korea openly supports China in it's anti-Japan agenda, it is damaging US strategic policy. This is not "hyperbole" it's a known headache for the State Department. Korea relies almost 100% on trade with China and is not in a position to stand up to it as Japan can. Hence it has the US protecting them while they coddle up to China which is the only reason that North Korea exists today. The hotel is righto cancel for safety and security reasons, the fault lies with the current South Korean government and Park who by advocating an official anti-Japan policy legitimizes Korean anti-Japan sentiment, forcing Korean business' to suffer. And YES South Korea IS damaging US policy. Note that the US doesn't care if Abe or anyone else go visits a shrine that honors dead people. The only objection the USD has made is that a visit would "upset" the crybabys. Note alsoi that the United States WELCOMES Japan's move to collective defense because it is an ally and only helps the United States. If Koreans could think straight they would realize that Japan's collective defense is only to their benefit, But instead they criticize it as their Chinese masters tell them to.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Papi2013Jul. 12, 2014 - 09:17PM JST Then why do they use the same Imperial Japanese flag? Koreans object to seeing that flag, especially at this time >when Japan is turning more to the right.

When Koreans object to the 16 rayed rising sun flag they are exposing their lack of education, That flag is not the "Imperial Japanese flag". It is the Japanese naval ensign flown by the Japanese Navy since inception in the 1800s. The flags origins are much older going back centuries, Japanese naval ships flew this flag when they guarded Austraian troops in the Mediterranean in WWI as a member of the Allies. The flag was not used after 1945 but was reinstated as the Naval ensign of the JMSDF in 1968, It has nothing to do with representing Imperialism. The US Navy trains together with the JMSDF and the Japanese naval ensign flies alongside the Stars and Stripes, Don't they have google in South Korea? Japan isn't "turning more to the right" when you consider how far from the right the country has been since 1945. South Korea and China are far more "nationalist" than Japan could ever be.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I doubt it was much about concern for safety, but whatever.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

the party, which was scheduled for Friday night and which is usually held each year at the Lotte

Huh?!! The Japanese embassy in Seoul holds a party every year to celebrate the founding of the JSDF?... Where else is this happening?

Thank you Lotte hotel in Seoul for bringing this to the Japanese taxpayer's attention.

5 ( +20 / -15 )

What's the Korean word for "omotenashi"? Oh, that's right, there isn't one.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

@elbuda - your rant is strange. Do you know that one purpose of an embassy is to host events and functions related to the home country? As for 'money wasting' what do you expect, thats what all governments do best. Regarding lotte hotel , I once stayed there. As 'first class' hotels go, it was crap. I wouldnt hold any event that actually mattered at such a facility.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

South Koreans mentality has no difference with their ally arrogant, shameless low life Commie China regime.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

The Self Defense Force is not the Imperial Army nor Navy. I served in the SDF and comparing them with the old Imperials is insulting. The old Japan is gone though there are a few fruits flakes and nuts that want it to return. However the constant rubbing Japans nose in the Imperials crime is too much to take. Most people will agree they did some very bad things but that was them and not us. I just do not see how Japan can maintain good relations with a country that bashes them. The Republic of Korea needs to make the choice of being a friend with the Peoples Republic of China or Japan. I have been to Korea and they hate Japanese. So my guess is the hotel waited to the last minute to make it impossible for the event to be relocated. Maybe they were bribed to do this evil deed.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Wait a second... Didn't a hotel in Yokohama, I think, cancel a teachers meeting because of a flag related issue? All I am saying is that businesses cancel things for a variety of reasons.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

It quoted a hotel spokesperson as saying they had received threats and protests for agreeing to host the party, and were concerned about demonstrations. The reception will now be held at the Japanese embassy.

With the level of hate that the Nationalist have against Japan this was a good move. Who know what would have happened if the hotel did hold this event!

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Lotte is a fabulously wealthy Korean company that made most of their money in Japan.

Exactly. I used to live in Niigata. I still have friends there. Going to Asia and Europe, instead of going to Narita, we went to Seoul as connecting gateway. Several people I knew who still live in Niigata are doing that.

But I will convince them to use Haneda as soon as possible. That has to be changed. To the best we can, no matter how little it is, we should not give money to SK anymore.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Here come fresh alarming statistics: Yesterday a joint survey released by Japan’s think tank, Genron NPO, and S.K’s think tank- EAI. In which, 46.3% of South Koreans surveyed believe that a military threat would come from Japan although 83.4 of them point their fingers to N.K and 39.6% to China respectively.

What I find MORE alarming is that 16.6% of South Koreans apparently don't think that North Korea is a military threat. Of the three countries mentioned, which one has actually attacked South Korea with military hardware in the last five years?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

It is called "collective defense" and it is a bad ideal. The Republic of Korea wants Japan as an enemy and I say lets destroy relations. It is time to downgrade relations with Seoul and stop all military cooperation. Next tell the Americans they can not use their bases to support the southern faction of Korea in the case of conflict. Japan needs to be neutral in any Korean conflict.

Good relations with the southern faction is impossible. Their politicians each try and outdo each other with Japanese hatred. Lets give them the wages for their hatred!

4 ( +7 / -3 )

->jerseyboy

Indeed, it is an opinion piece from the chief of the AP Pyongyang office so I'd like to believe it carries more weight and insight than at least my own opinion. That said, I don't think it's very hard to concur with it and we're all entitled to our own opinions...because we don't live in a totalitarian regime that suppresses Freedom of Speech like Communist China.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I see some folks attempting to justify South Korea's official anti-Japan position. Japan's role in the US-South Korea defense is undeniable. This equates to protecting South Korea and South Korean lives. Somehow the Park regime and many South Korean nationalists seem to think that Japanese politicians making comments or visiting a shrine where nobody is getting hurt, are more important issues than the defense of South Korea. Japan has not denounced the 1965 treaty with South Korea, even though South Korea has completely breached all of it's terms. In other words, Japan's official position towards South Korea has not changed.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Koreans object to seeing that flag

Too bad for them. We can"t adjust our lives to fit in with every little thing the ROK "objects to" ... and Lord knows that's a lot of things.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Remove all Korean Drama in Japanese CATV and Over-the-air Broadcast.

Make good hotel and expand Haneda and Tamachi/Shinagawa districts so that Korean economy will gradually diluted.

Instead of buying Galaxy, buy xPeria Z2.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Huh?!! The Japanese embassy in Seoul holds a party every year to celebrate the founding of the JSDF?... Where else is this happening?

Look at a map of ANY country, pick ANY embassy, and you'll have your answer. Embassies hold parties to promote some aspect of their home country. Those parties are paid for by funds from their home country. They always have and always will. The JSDF was considered a major improvement over what it replaced, and so it was considered a valid organization to fete in countries that had to deal with the IJA and IJN before and during WWII. With the new law that just was passed that allows the JSDF to venture back out, however, I think this party lost its main reason for being. The JSDF is now a lot more like the old IJN and IJA than it was when this party was planned. I could see a party celebrating 60 years of service back in Japan, but in light of the recent change to the JSDF's status I can't really see how continuing to celebrate the JSDF's service in a former colony would be considered a "good" thing.

The hotel certainly has a right to deny service to customers, but the tensions between Japan and South Korea didn't just start yesterday. If the hotel was concerned about safety they should have cancelled their part in the party much sooner.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

No matter what Japan will do, even all Japanese leaders and Japanese people walk down by KNEELING through the vast plain full of stones, gravel and thorns, hatred in the heart of Koreans will never heal. Just rise up Japan, build more economically and militarily. Give back what they wish for Japan. Kick-out the Galaxy series and LG products in Japan and so with Lotte products.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

“The Self-Defense Forces use the Rising Sun flag. Red rays stretch out from a red circle representing the sun. The military flag, which was used under Japanese militarism"

This is the same flag used by the Imperial Navy when they defeated China in 1895 and Korea was released from a "Chinese Tributary Status" for the first time. Post WWII we gave them democracy, protected them from becoming party of North Korea and their thanks is to go back to being a Chinese Tributary State and damaging U.S. region strategic interests. We should pull our 30,000 troops out of South Korea and let them ask the Chinese PLA to be stationed there. With no need to protect South Korea, our burden in Japan can be reduced as well.

DisillusionedJul. 11, 2014 - 09:26PM JST Japan should not be holding a celebration for their military in Korea. That's is just ludicrous!

Why? South Korea is not China. Japan's military is going to be playing a support role if South Korea ever gets attacked by North Korea again. Is WWII still stuck in the throat? President Park's father was an officer in the IJA.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Hasn't Abe, in his infinite wisdom (sarcasm) altered the constitution so that Japan can come to the rescue of its allies (the only one being the USA)?

Short form: "No." Long form: A single person, whether the Prime Minister, the Emperor, or a local street sweeper, cannot change the Constitution all by themself. It requires a lot of people to agree to a change in the Constitution. You already know this, but I guess it doesn't help your rhetoric to acknowledge that fact so you pretend the fact doesn't exist.

What Abe's cabinet was working on was a reinterpretation of the EXISTING constitution that allowed the JSDF to operate in a combat zone - but in a logistical capability only. This re-interpretation received a lot of protest, so on July 6 it was announced that the new interpretation was no longer going to be pursued.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wasnt the Japanese SDF part of the recent overall rescue effort in the Korean ferry disaster?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Refusing service to customers is the hotel's business, so whatevs. However, assuming this party is something of a large event where preparations are made way advance and the number of guests expected to be in the hundreds, only to be canceled the day before...terrible. If you don't want to rent your facilities out to certain groups (a totally different argument in of itself), don't do it from the beginning.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Post WWII we gave them democracy, protected them from becoming party of North Korea

South Korea until recently, was a very long series of military dictatorships, all supported by America. It was the Korean people themselves who had suffered so much under those dictatorships demanded democracy and mostly got it. A democratic South Korea is still a very young country and there are still too many laws on the books from the era of the military dictatorships.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

That's it, I'm not buying any Lotte products.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

Is Lotte the same Lotte that was in Shinjuku on rubbles after War was over? Candy company? Didn't it start in Japan?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

These Japanese embassy people wine and dine all the time. You are invited if you are president of Japanese company, public servant, ambassador, doctor, journalist, etc. free of charge. Dress up and enjoy for about two hours. I remember some embassy was reprimanded for hoarding too many expensive wine bottles.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It quoted a hotel spokesperson as saying they had received threats and protests for agreeing to host the party, and were concerned about demonstrations.

To be fair to the Lotte Hotel, they aren't in the business of promoting or protecting free speech. Sadly, that's the job of the South Korean government, which seems all to eager to, at the very minimum, stand aside and feign ignorance as these threats are made. I can't find fault with the hotel for this.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@HowardAtwen: Japanese Embassy does not pay all before events. Just contract fees and then on the day of events they pay balance. Just like hokkaidoguy explained, cancellation by hotels, they get refund of what they paid. You can check Gaimu-shi in Japan. You will receive the leaflets of how to do business with Gaimu-sho agencies.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japan should not be holding a celebration for their military in Korea. That's is just ludicrous!

0 ( +10 / -10 )

“Hotel in Seoul refuses to hold party by Japanese embassy for SDF”

No surprise at all, in part, Pain and suffering from the war-time past run deep in S.K. On top of that, Japanese current nationalistic admin’s alienating polices and warmongering attitude may also fuel the distrust further in this latest tension between two neighbors.

Here come fresh alarming statistics: Yesterday a joint survey released by Japan’s think tank, Genron NPO, and S.K’s think tank- EAI. In which, 46.3% of South Koreans surveyed believe that a military threat would come from Japan although 83.4 of them point their fingers to N.K and 39.6% to China respectively.

To improve the strained relation, both Japan and S.K have lots of work to do ahead, this is for sure.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Lotte is a huge company. The founder is 91 and still going strong. He is Korean-Japanese and started his business selling chewing gum right after WWII. One of his sons runs Lotte Korea and another son Lotte Japan. So I guess they can afford to cancel the event.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Which brings us to the question, is Japan a credible threat to South Korea?

pffftt you decide

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You guys who are bellowing for swift retribution against South Korea here do realize that any threats that were made against the Lotte Hotel, a private business, it should be noted, were likely made by a few isolated nuts, right?

And you do realize that the decision to decline hosting the event was made by the hotel, again, a private business, and not the South Korea government? Seriously, you all do realize this, right?

How a private business's decision to err on the side of caution and decline to hold the event translates into, "Boycott all South Korea products! Let's allow relations to deteriorate! Let the U.S. troops pull out! Let the PLA protect South Korea from the DPRK!" is unfathomable.

The foaming at the mouth that goes on here isn't much different from the midset necessary to, oh, let's say, phone in threats of violence to a hotel hosting a guest you don't particularly like.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Fadamor

What I find MORE alarming is that 16.6% of South Koreans apparently don't think that North Korea is a military threat. Of the three countries mentioned, which one has actually attacked South Korea with military hardware in the last five years?

The Nth Korean Govt might come across as foolish, but they're not stupid enough to seriously attack a country which hosts USA soldiers within a stone's throw of the border. The Kims have it good there but even they know their days would end if they ever sent troops South

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm also shocked to hear that our tax money is being used for such annual parties.

For a hotel to cancel at the last minute for purely political reasons is shocking. I would never book anything with them and could not in good conscience recommend them for events.

I will also not recommend or use the Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa in Tokyo

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

toshiko, Lotte has headquarters in both Japan and Korea. They have retail and management presence in both countries.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The only foaming at the mouth hate is coming from South Korea, from the Park regime down to nationalist losers. The proof is this article, a Korean business cancels something they've done for years for fear of the hate mongers. If the Park regime did not put a priority on appeasing China and took the "hate" out of it's diplomatic relations with Japan the public would follow and this Korean hotel wouldn't have to yield to hate filled public sentiment.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Japanese Flag - origin:

In early Japanese history, the Hinomaru motif was used on flags of daimyos and samurai. The ancient history Shoku Nihongi says that Emperor Mommu used a flag representing the sun in his court in 701, and this is the first recorded use of a sun-motif flag in Japan. The oldest existing flag is preserved in Unpoo-ji temple, Kooshuu Yamanashi, which is older than the 16th century, and an ancient legend says that the flag was given to the temple by Emperor Go-Reizei in the 11th century. During the Meiji Restoration, both the sun disc and the Rising Sun Ensign of the Imperial Japanese Navy became major symbols in the emerging Japanese empire. Propaganda posters, textbooks, and films depicted the flag as a source of pride and patriotism. In Japanese homes, citizens were required to display the flag during national holidays, celebrations and other occasions as decreed by the government. Different tokens of devotion to Japan and its emperor featuring the Hinomaru motif became popular during the Second Sino-Japanese War and other conflicts. These tokens ranged from slogans written on the flag to clothing items and dishes that resembled the flag.

The Law Regarding the National Flag and National Anthem was passed in 1999, choosing both the Hinomaru and Kimigayo as Japan's national symbols. The passage of the law stemmed from a suicide of the principal of Sera High School in Sera, Hiroshima, Ishikawa Toshihiro, who could not resolve a dispute between his school board and his teachers over the use of the Hinomaru and Kimigayo. The Act is one of the most controversial laws passed by the Diet since the 1992 "Law Concerning Cooperation for United Nations Peacekeeping Operations and Other Operations", also known as the "International Peace Cooperation Law".

It is still very controversial among Japanese people yet.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Presumably Lotte, as a large Korean-Japanese company producing food among other things, does a significant amount of business with the SDF.

The owner/founder is Korean-Japanese, 91 years old, born in Ulsan, founded Lotte in 1948, two years after graduating from a Tokyo high school. He lives "in South Korea for odd months and in Japan for even months". So we would expect him to be friendly to both sides, probably a prominent member of both the Japanese-Korean Friendship Society and Korean-Japanese Friendship Society.

These flareups are like forest fires. There is always going to be some fuel lying around, waiting for a little heat to be applied to start a new fire. Possibly the only reason we have been seeing these flareups in the last few years is the newness of the Internet as a much easier venue to complain on, to worldwide effect. Even though most people are tired of hearing these arguments, such flareups will continue. Reporters and politicians and bureaucrats all looking to climb over their competitors and opponents all need jobs, after all. About the best you can hope for is they don't lead to riots, such as happened in China. Given the background of the Lotte company, likely they did not cancel the event without embarrassment and regret. Possibly even the company founder had planned to attend.

Going to university with international students, traveling around the world, meeting new friends and relatives, you find they are not the bugaboos you'd expect; after all your prior exposure to their home countries consists of school history books on WWII, the Cultural Revolution and Great Famine, etc. I remember once going to Germany, by train from Paris to Stuttgart. Surprised to see on arrival that Germany wasn't filled with purple thunderclouds, lightning, blackened fields, dour people grimacing at the foreigners, armed castles! It was sunshiney and full of little shops, with people in shorts shopping at them!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shin_Kyuk-Ho

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Maybe Japan should now cancel Korean government party in Tokyo, that celebrates the liberation of Korea from Japan. Or the Korean celebration at the Japanese hotel in Tokyo, that honors the comfort women victims.

Oops, oh yes, Koreans don't do those in Japan, so it's moot. Nevermind.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

@Rap2013, @ serendi: Thank you for info. about Lotte. So, it is the same Lotte I remember. We used to have Lotte sweets in our mouth when teachers were facing blackboards. Hotels and many business. Is';t there one Lotte Hotel in n Korea that glitters like Las Vegas? /success came from their innovative business habits, I'd bet.

I still believe Lotte choose safety than one time profit.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Lotte chose safety of hotel property and guests before profit.

This event has already been paid for by the Japanese Embassy. What makes you think Lotte is losing profit by cancelling?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

It is sad but Japanese hotel or other business sometime cancel event due to violence threat. Shoganai

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Caving to the nutcases. Sad.

To be fair to the Lotte Hotel, they aren't in the business of promoting or protecting free speech. Sadly, that's the job of the South Korean government,

WillB and LFRAgain...really? So what does that make the cinemas in Japan that cancelled showings of the movie about Nanjing a few years back, because they received threats of violence from right-wing groups? And they used the same excuse about "concern for public safety". And the Japanese government did nothing. Sorry, but IMO, Kisihda's calling this "deplorable" is the height of hypocricy.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Not only the Rising Sun flags, but the JAPANESE LANGUAGE was used during the occupation, perpetuated by JAPANESE PEOPLE. It's only reasonable that anything Japanese should be purged from Korea because they bear as reminders to the occupation.

But what's with the sole obsession on the Rising Sun flags Korean Nationalists, are you afraid you might be labeled as crazy if you went further?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Good on them!

-4 ( +12 / -16 )

No worries, the Lotte Hotel will get other paying guests to have a party to replace the SDF reception, and they won't lose the money. Or maybe not...

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Great decision by the Hotel and obviously South Korean's government supported the decision.

Safety is a right to for the public sector. Japan's Embassy is an excellent place to hold their party / ceremony.

I for one would consider it pretty rude and insulting if my enemy was allowed to come into my house, hold a party and leave things in a mess.

Not all money is good money.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

@bongbong: That's it, I'm not buying any Lotte products.

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

What are products by Lotte Hotel in Korea?

Lotte chose safety of hotel property and guests before profit. It knows Korean people's threats are not just lip service.

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

ABE said his re-armament program was solely for defense purpose and it is impossible for SDF to be deployed abroad...this resonated an identical tone to HITLER's excuse for his re-armament of the Nazi Regime...next move he made was to invade Czechoslovakia and Poland. Once the seal is broken ABE or any of his cronies can initiate war as long as they have an excuse. After half a century of brutal colonial rule by Imperial Japan, many Koreans are nervous about Mr. Abe indifferent attitude toward and his Nationalistic ideals and who can blame them.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Abe wanted to re-interpret constitution (because amending Article 9 movement had been failed). With clever Kitaoka's help, collective defense came out. This means Japan can send Japanese SDF to oversea to help friendly country (meaning USA and/or UN Forces - Not S. Korea, not N Korea yet). Of cause S. Korean Govt is nervous. It knows Japan does not consider S Korea as a friendly nation. Kitaoka is clever. He created new way. He is not copying antiquated Nazi or Imperial Japanese Forces. Re-interpret ... Did Hitler and Nazi use such word to fool Germany people?

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

The most righteous thing to do!!!

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

This is the same flag used by the Imperial Navy when they defeated China in 1895 and Korea was released from a "Chinese Tributary Status" for the first time. Post WWII we gave them democracy, protected them from becoming party of North Korea and their thanks is to go back to being a Chinese Tributary State and damaging U.S. region strategic interests. We should pull our 30,000 troops out of South Korea and let them ask the Chinese PLA to be stationed there. With no need to protect South Korea, our burden in Japan can be reduced as well.

Ossan...what the heck does this have to do with the subject at hand? The fact that the U.S. is allies with both SK and Japan is not relevant here. This is an SK - Japan issue, and your statement about SK becoming a "Chinese Tributory State" is simply ludicrous hyperbole. And they are not "damaging U.S. region (sic) strategic interests" any more than Abe and his LDP cohorts are every time they visit Yasakuni.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

LeChat -- what you point to is an opinion piece, not an article. It is no more valid that your opinion or mine. Sure there are rifts appearing in the SK - Japan relationship, and, no doubt, China would love to take advantage of that. But Lotte is no more to blame for that than the Cabinet members who insist on visiting Yasakuni, or "examining" the comfort women apology. Both Japan and SK need to grow up from a dilplomatic standpoint.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

“Is Japan holding such an event in the middle of Seoul because it does not know what is going on or does not care about it at all?” The answer is it doesn’t care and of course it knows what is going on. The Embassy must have known all about the threats and protests before hand, and already prepared to hold the reception at the Embassy otherwise how can it set up the party for 500 people in one day. Think about the publicity that J officials trying to get and the negative image created for Korea. I wonder whether every J embassy in the world is having a reception or just in Korea. Something is smelly in the closet.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

If the article is to be believed, the event is in rather bad taste. When did someone think that holding a party to celebrate the formation of Japanese military units on Korean soil would be a good idea? The normalization treaty of 1965 aside, the reality is that Koreans and Japanese, from the governmental level on down, dispute what happened during the Japanese occupation. Why would anyone, especially the military, poke this open sore?

Tinawatanabe is right, this is probably more about wining and dining than basic cultural sensitivity.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

I served in the SDF and comparing them with the old Imperials is insulting.

Then why do they use the same Imperial Japanese flag? Koreans object to seeing that flag, especially at this time when Japan is turning more to the right.

Most people will agree they did some very bad things but that was them and not us.

Good point, but look at it this way, there are plenty of you guys in your ranks who defend them and their actions in WWII. Can you not understand why they would mistake you guys for the same guys?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

They should change the design of the flag to something else.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

I always shop at Lotte supermarket in Beijing. I don't know if they are related. No matter what, I will shop more at Lotte from henceforth! Fancy holding a 60th anniversary of JSDF in Korea at this moment. What audacity and lack of diplomacy! Hopefully, fair thinking Japanese will take up this issue. Good for Lotte!

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

It was accepted because the SDF was previously a self-defence force. Now it has projectile military capabilities. This SDF could now invade Korea. So it's meaning has changed.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

Why are they still calling it SDF?

Hasn't Abe, in his infinite wisdom (sarcasm) altered the constitution so that Japan can come to the rescue of its allies (the only one being the USA)?

In which case, it's hardly Self Defense, is it?

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

Hotel officials said the party, which was scheduled for Friday night and which is usually held each year at the Lotte, was canceled

Usually held each year.

The question is: "Has Japan changed, or has Korea changed?" I think the answer is pretty evident. The Koreans have been welcoming hosts for many years -- and now that Japan is revealing a bit more of its ugly side towards Korea and making overtures to change its six-decade philosophy about its own military, the management of the hotel is rightfully concerned for the security of its guests.

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

South Korea has been allowing this Japanese military celebration for years with no problems. But something changed since last year, for South Korea to pull the welcome mat. And that is Abe government's right wing shift that included horrible comments from his party members, clear cut backing away from WW2 denouncements, and the redefining of the Article 9.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

I am angry the Japanese Embassy in Seoul Korea is pulling this kind of BS! And with OUR TAXES!! It is insulting to the KOREAN PEOPLE and to us, here in Japan, etc..who are PAYING FOR these corrupt Japanese bastards to be living it up there in Korea and with OUR TAXES, this should be the real outrage, and why the hell should the JSDF have to have any kind of celebration?? They should worry about protecting the Senkaku islands etc..rather than be getting drunk in Korean and getting the best prostitutes your Japanese Yen can buy, thanks to OUR TAXES!!

-13 ( +5 / -18 )

Good. Now the Japanese know what it is like to be a gaijin. More importantly, this celebration at this time when Abe is violating Article 9 this "celebration" would be a militarist orgy and salt poured into Korea's still open WWII wound.

-14 ( +5 / -19 )

Good the event was cancelled. Rising Sun flag = Nazi flag.

-15 ( +1 / -16 )

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