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Roh slams Koizumi on Yasukuni


17 Jan 2004
Been a month since a post on Japan-Korea relations, so here's an interesting read:

SEOUL (Kyodo) South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun on Monday condemned as "reckless" efforts by Japanese leaders to "drum up" public support at the expense of other countries' feelings, the Yonhap news agency reported.
Roh did not name Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi directly during a speech commemorating a Korean uprising against Japanese colonial rule 85 years ago. Yet his barbs appeared to be aimed at Koizumi's repeated visits to Yasukuni Shrine, which honors convicted Japanese war criminals as well as the nation's war dead.

Japan Times
Roh Wants to Visit Japanese War Shrine
Roh said he wants to tour Yushukan, a war museum inside the Yasukuni Shrine, which displays war mementos and weapons that date back to the Sino-Japanese War.
Although he might feel like holding a press conference or two blaming Japanese militalist inclination after inspecting display items in the Memorial Museum, the evil former prime minister Taro Katsura is not enshrined in Yasukuni unfortunately.
Note that Japan did not start a war against Korea at that time either.

The museum is located in the Yasukuni premise. It means that Roh will have to walk through the main torii gate to get in. Is he still determined to do so knowing what it means.

Koizumi Says Roh Welcome to Visit Yasukuni's War Museum

An interesting article on a remark by Roh:

A Shameful Speech on Memorial Day
A Memorial Day ceremony is supposed to remember, thank and honor those who sacrificed themselves for the country, but the president had nothing but a few formulaic phrases for them. Instead, he derides the history they built and defended at the National Cemetery where 54,460 of them, including two former presidents of the Republic, are buried, and in front of some 5,000 surviving relatives, students and others. The president has, to be sure, described our history as one where "justice was defeated and opportunism prevailed" since his inauguration. But does he have to do it on Memorial Day?
That is how South Korean soldiers who died in action are treated there. As startling as the US president commenting "Vietnam war was wrongful therefore deaths of GIs there were meaningless" at Arlington.
No wonder Roh feels nothing wrong about claiming that Japanese prime minister should not visit Yasukuni to pray for dead soldiers.

Opinions like the newspaper editorial are not the majority there, after all South Koreans democratically elected their president.

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