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Home / World / Why a military spear between Japan and South Korea could fall into crisis

Why a military spear between Japan and South Korea could fall into crisis



The spade began on December 20 after a meeting between a Japanese plane that Tokyo said it was gathering information and a South Korean destroyer that Seoul said was on a humanitarian mission.

Both sides disagree on what would happen next – The Japanese said the South Koreans attacked their planes with a missile defense radar, while the South Koreans said that the Japanese plane was flying dangerously low and that the radar was "not intended was to pursue a plane controlled by Japan ".

The disagreement has taken place rapidly escalating, bringing historical conflicts to the fore and thus threatening the stability of the region.

"East Asian geopolitics has been shaken and is now unexplained," said the former Van Jackson Defense Department officer specializing in the Asia-Pacific region.

"China tries to oust the US, North Korea has taken a Jiujitsu step by using summit diplomacy to consolidate its nuclear status. Although the alleged purpose is to denuclearize Pyongyang, the future of the US is in less safe in the region today than it has been since the 1970s.

"In the midst of this turmoil, oppressed hostilities erupted through stability in the region.

A Marriage of Purpose

South Korea and Japan are historical opponents trapped in a marriage of expediency, resulting in a complex partnership, and their relationship is still strong through the legacy of Imperial Japanese occupation and colonization

This revived tension comes at a dreadful time for the United States – the Trump government is currently preparing for the second summit with North Korea, while approaching an important deadline for Trade talks with China.

Shortly after the first incident, Japan and South Korea held working meetings to try to solve the problem behind closed doors.

It does not seem to have worked – and neither side buys the explanation of the others.

Japan released a video of the incident on December 28th his perspective. South Korea released its own video on January 4th. Everyone accuses the other of misleading the public and distorting the facts.

Japan made three more flyovers over South Korean ships this month – one last week, one on Tuesday and one Wednesday. Seoul publicly condemned the recent one as a "clearly provocative act" against a "partner country".

  The South Korean Ministry of Defense released this radar picture showing a 7.5 km Japanese patrol plane from South Korean naval destroyer Dae Joyeong.

But South Korea was a military dictatorship at the time, and many Koreans held the deal for unfair – and still fight against him today.

The two countries are still in a heated debate about statues of "comfort women" – Korean women needing to provide sexual services to Japanese soldiers – and recent Supreme Court decisions of South Korea allowing citizens to seek compensation from Japanese companies to sue, imprisoned forced labor.

Japan claims that both problems were regulated by the treaty.

In addition, for more than 50 years, they have been in a heated argument about owning an archipelago called Dokdo in Korean and Takeshima in Japanese.

Despite all this, military-military relations between Japan and South Korea have often been largely unaffected by political and political disagreements, said Miller, an analyst with the Japan Institute for International Affairs.

"That was the one area that had somehow been quarantined or immunized," he said. "It was not always perfect … but both agreed it was for the better."

Maintenance of the Alliance

Foreign Ministers of Japan and South Korea met on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on Wednesday to discuss the issue, but the meeting ended with explanations that apparently did not solve anything.

Not with them in Davos was the common ally, the United States, who would normally support the dispute. President Donald Trump canceled his trip to Davos to deal with the closure of the US government.

Some have accused the White House of not giving enough importance to coordinating and managing the Alliance. Former Defense Secretary James Mattis pointed out that in his letter of resignation, this is a crucial disagreement between himself and the president.

"Our strength as a nation is inextricably linked to the strength of our unique and comprehensive system of alliances and partnerships," Mattis wrote.

"While the US remains the indispensable nation in the free world, we can not effectively protect our interests or effectively serve that role without maintaining strong alliances and showing respect for these allies."

Analysts like Jackson, the department's former defense remarks, fear that the current spit is a manifestation of a dwindling US leadership and will play into the hands of North Korea and China – two countries that have in the past attempted to defeat the US Reducing Influence in the Region by Causing Splits Between Washington and Its Allies

"What we have seen lately is, in a sense, a return to history – the two countries have never fully reconciled as they did In 19 normalized 65, and in the name of cooperation with the US many conflicts of interest on the abyss, "said Jackson.

"If something does not change, unfortunately I expect that someday a kind of serious crisis will break out."


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