politics

U.N. chief urges Japan, China, S Korea to reconcile

42 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

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42 Comments
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They are all as bad as each other. One the one hand you have Japan downplaying and denying historical facts and on the other you have Korea and China exaggerating them. - A leopard can't change its spots!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Thanks UN Chief, we all forgot how so easy it really is.

One of the few times I actually agree with Disillusioned :)

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Abe, speaking after Ban, did not directly respond to the secretary general’s request.

says it all....!

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Can't they all just get along? Toyota, Samsung and Daiso demand it!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

“We must lay the ground for genuine reconciliation, harmony, peace and prosperity. In this context, I would urge the leaders in the region to be future-oriented, remembering the past,”

Don't see how any reasonable person can disagree with this. I guess the first big test will be when Abe releases his much-anticipated statement that his committee is working on. One can only hope that the members of this committee, as well as Abe himself, feel the same way Ban does.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

"...to develop forward-looking relations, while remembering the past."

Interesting comment. I don't know exactly how he referred to Japan in the rest of his speech, but this comment seems aimed at China and North Korea. Anyone agree?

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

but this comment seems aimed at China and North Korea. Anyone agree?

Actually, I disagree completely. I think it is aimed at all three equally.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

No doubt, Mr. Secretary General, they will get right on that, since obviously everyone listens to what you say.

Words, words, words. It is amazing that all of these diplomat types get paid so much money to spout meaningless words. I mean, who cares in the end what they say, really?!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Abe's hawkish right wing DNA is endangering Japan. China and South Korea's tenacious verbal attacks against Japan are helping Abe's stance and provoking Japanese people's antipathy. Not only Chinese and Korean people but also Japanese people were victims of the pre-war Japan's militarism. Most of the Japanese people today don't know about the miseries of our past and seems following Abe who try to change the peace constitituion citing it was not written by us but was forced upon us by the occupation forces. That is not true. The draft Japan proposed was not very much democratic and it was rejected by GHQ. Only the occupation force could make such a radical reform and could change Japan to a democratic country. We have to be humble to our neighbours despite their unreasonable provocations.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

china and s korea would talk less about ww2 if japan would like germany properly educate its population. japan is the one who has to make the first move here.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

@AlexNoaburg

japan is the one who has to make the first move here.

It's 2015. Weren't you surprised when you woke up and saw things like mobile phones and microwave ovens?

We've been to the Moon too apparently.

Anyway, to get you up to speed, ask somebody to help you "go online" and start reading this. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portal:History

Good luck.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

We should all be "Yoki Rinjin" to our neighbors.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Abe could have addressed the historical and territorial issues with neighbors more, expressing his remorse and intention to reconcile. This meeting seems to have been a great opportunity to show Japan's attitude as a peace-inclined nation.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

He had to mention all three of them because they are involved in the current contretempts, however this is obviously directed and not very subtly towards Japan in general and Prime Minister Abe in particular.

South Korea has not been altering history so how can this be directed at them?

China I am not so sure about, they do have a history of exaggeration when it suits them.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Feelings of revenge, shame and denial are so ingrained in confucian cultures that no-one will be forgiving and forgetting in our lifetimes. The revised textbooks will be rolling off the printing presses long after we are all dead.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Jim McBrideMar. 17, 2015 - 09:22AM JST

South Korea has not been altering history so how can this be directed at them?

They do a lot. It seems I cannot comment on that for some "technical reasons".

2 ( +7 / -5 )

How can these three countries to reconcile? I dont want to talk about the history, that is boring! China has lean out an olive branch to propose founding a new monetary policy system know as the " Asia Infrastructure Investment bank " to eye on the future and building a a better tomorrow .....etc. Japan just refused to take a look and snubing with a despise manner. South Korea is similar just they behave a little bit better manner than Japan. Now New Zealand, The United Kingdom has joined the AIIB... they were European countries but willing to come forward to do what is "REAL"! Asia countries the big three : China,RoK,Japan they just cant working together and of course the Abe administration , is a love confronting person who never live with his words. You xant blame China for rejecting the reconciliation with a neighbour like this person !

2 ( +5 / -3 )

elephant200Mar. 17, 2015 - 10:19AM JST

Japan just refused to take a look and snubing with a despise manner. South Korea is similar just they behave a little bit better manner than Japan. Now New Zealand, The United Kingdom has joined the AIIB... they were European countries but willing to come forward to do what is "REAL"!

If China did not have long records of environmental destruction due to its disrespect to human rights of people living near the development areas, Japan would have joined.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

"...but this comment seems aimed at China and North Korea. Anyone agree?"

Actually, I disagree completely. I think it is aimed at all three equally

I don't see it this way. My thinking is this: The comment by Ban reminds me of a saying the Jewish people often use: "Forgive but never forget." So to me this relates more to South Korea and China than Japan.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Japan could have done a lot more, and can still do a lot more in their attitudes to WW2. On the other hand, Korea and China need to learn that you can't keep ordering people to apologise, and no matter how badly done by you have been, there comes a time when people tire of hearing about another's suffering.

So, yeah, I agree. All three countries could do a lot more.

On the other hand, let's remember that Jewish organisations never stopped hunting down Nazi war criminals. WW2 is like yesterday for a lot of people.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Lot of people assuming China and South Korea really want to move on.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

They can be reconciled if Japan sincerely atones for its WW2 actions. From the perspective of China and South Korea, Japan invaded their countries, massacred their citizens, sexually enslaved their women - and in the case of Korea - became a colony for 35 years. Now a lot of time has passed, but until Japan follows the example of Germany - the wounds will never heal

-2 ( +5 / -8 )

UN=Useless Nations

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

This intervention will be about as useful as the UN usually is - not much.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Now a lot of time has passed, but until Japan follows the example of Germany - the wounds will never heal

I'm not sure the popular comparisons with Germany are always valuable. They tend to ignore culture. Modern Germans don't believe that the guilt of their their ancestors somehow passes down through the generations in perpetuity. Therefore they have much less incentive to rewrite history or deny the truth. Likewise, the French don't believe that the humiliation suffered by their ancestors has resulted in a multi-generational loss of face that can only be repaired with revenge. Different cultures have produced very different results.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Reconcile? For what? This is much more fun to the people.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Abe, speaking after Ban, did not directly respond to the secretary general’s request. Abe reiterated that Japan is built on “deep regret over the past war,” without making clear if the regret refers to damage it caused other Asian countries

Well looks like abe is setting the tone this year as I predicted, too stubborn to do right, continues to do wrong, Japans grave just got deeper, way to go, NOT!

As others have said all 3 are to blame for all this non-sense, BUT Japan is the only one that can easily end this, its easy just admit what Japan did, THEN China & Korea(s) cant say squat & if they do then Japan & everyone can heap SCORN on them!

Japan has always had the ability to end all this, I predicted abe would dig in & continue down the low road, seems abe is perfectly content make life for everyone in Japan a little worse each day............. what a WASTE!

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Forget the reconciliation, if that exists it has been done for long time ago. The China /Japan/Korean wars has presisted many centuries. Japan goto get their F35 and China hurry to get their Su35 fighters. This is really mean to their business.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Here is something the UN should seriously look at, if Japan wants a seat on the Security Council let them show that they can negotiate and make peace and not come across as thinking that money alone will get them what they want.

Right now to me it seems that Abe is just pointing to the monetary support it gives the UN for the basis of deserving a seat on the Council.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

I'm not sure the popular comparisons with Germany are always valuable. Why not? Both nations committed acts of aggression. Germany educates her people on what happened - and moreover Germany regularly makes statements of remorse - which aren't contradicted. Japan does none of this. Most Japanese know nothing of their history either

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Christopher GlenMar. 17, 2015 - 01:50PM JST

Most Japanese know nothing of their history either.

Yeah, that is what Korean government brainwash its people to believe in. Because of this false belief, Koreans' hate against Japan will not go away, no matter what.

I think the only solution is that Korean government tells its people the truth.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Good try for Ban but what about disputed territories and how to reconcile when all sides disagree on the issue.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Good try for Ban but what about disputed territories and how to reconcile when all sides disagree on the issue.

Make it a military free zone and develop it jointly 50/50.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Japan should give a billion dollars comp to both of 'em and run full page apologies in Korean & Chinese newspapers. If Japan can show concrete proof of remorse to the rest of the world then any further Chinese & Korean complaints will be discredited and shown up for what they really are, i.e. political tools.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Japan should give a billion dollars comp to both of 'em

I'd prefer the money spent in the country to help the people who live here.

If it's going to be spent overseas, at least give to somebody who will appreciate it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Yeah, that is what Korean government brainwash its people to believe in

Nope. It's what Japan is doing.

Because of this false belief, Koreans' hate against Japan will not go away, no matter what

Because of Japan's lack of repentance and remorse, the ill will of Koreans and Chinese for that matter - won't go away. Abe has a great opportunity to reconcile by making a big apologetic speech on August 15th

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

@ReformedBasher, I agree, there are better ways to spend the money, but 2 billion (or whatever it takes) to put this whole episode to bed would be the best money that anyone has ever spent. Sadly I can't see this ever ending, the whole issue has become so much more than just an apology for all sides.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

ClippetyClopMar. 17, 2015 - 03:42PM JST

@ReformedBasher, I agree, there are better ways to spend the money, but 2 billion (or whatever it takes) to put this whole episode to bed

Yes, that was done in 1965 when Korea Japan Basic Treaty was concluded and ratified by Korean Congress and Japanese Parliament. http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Agreement_Between_Japan_and_the_Republic_of_Korea_Concerning_the_Settlement_of_Problems_in_Regard_to_Property_and_Claims_and_Economic_Cooperation

Article II

1 The High Contracting Parties confirm that the problems concerning property, rights, and interests of the two High Contracting Parties and their peoples (including juridical persons) and the claims between the High Contracting Parties and between their peoples, including those stipulated in Article IV(a) of the Peace Treaty with Japan signed at the city of San Francisco on September 8, 1951, have been settled completely and finally.

It is 50th anniversary of the Basic Treaty. Still, Korean Government will not put the issue to bed.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

$20billion I am sure some of it has been put to good use, certainly been good at keeping refugees OUT OF JAPAN!

As for buying influence.............not so much value for money there now is there!

As for the 1965 treaty with Korea, that's all well & good & clearly the Korean govt should have given at least some of the $$ to its people.

As for Japan things would have been better if it hadn't then gone on to white wash, lie & try to ignore history hoping no one would notice, not very sincere & again like the UN buying people or organizations off aint working very well for Japan now is it!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

No country since 1945 has a better record of peace, respect for the rights, technological innovation, and economic growth than Japan. The Americans deserve a lot of credit for this by imposing a constitution that gave more rights than ever and which took away any pretext for war by the Japanese.

But by denying that "the post-war regime" was a huge factor in being a foundation for Japan's stellar post-1945 record and by "restoring Japan's honor" for its aggression, colonization, and imperialism, Abe Shinzo and his 日本会議 rightist allies are undermining the power of the post- war record. By squaring facing history, Abe Shinzo can irrevocably claim the moral high ground, and the arguments by Chinese and Koreans would not have weight because the Japanese would have taken the sting out of them by admitting the facts.

Blowing the post-1945 record by insisting on revising and denying the pre-1945 record is anti-statesmanship. Ban's message is directed at all three countries, but he is also showing Japan the path to coming out on top the right and moral way.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It is 50th anniversary of the Basic Treaty. Still, Korean Government will not put the issue to bed.

Hmm, maybe because of Japan's hostorical revisionism, and provocative visits by PMs to Yasukuni shrine. I wouldn't let the matter rest, if I was in their position

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

In above photo, UN Secretary General is bowing deeper and Abe is looking on the back head of UN SG Abe could be computing how much money this guy want from Japan and No, no matter how much we donate, we are never included in Security Council member. So Abe followed Japanese rule of bowing. (Ogasahara ryu rei-hou)

But if no string is attached, (money) the suggestion is a good advise. USA might not like when 3 countries get friendly to ignore USA.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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