From the New York Times: putting the knee jerk to rest?
The right to know is the bedrock of every democracy. The Japanese public deserves to know the other side of the story. It is the politicians who flame public sentiments under the name of national interests who pose the greatest risk, not the islands themselves. Han-yi Shaw
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The Inconvenient Truth Behind the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands
Comment by Nicholas Kristof
Article By Han-yi Shaw
Source – New York Times, published September 19, 2012
Source – Han-yi Shaw 2012
Diaoyu Island is recorded under Kavalan, Taiwan in Revised Gazetteer of Fujian Province (1871).
I’ve had a longstanding interest in the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands, the subject of a dangerous territorial dispute between Japan and China. The United States claims to be neutral but in effect is siding with Japan, and we could be drawn in if a war ever arose. Let me clear that I deplore the violence in the recent anti-Japan protests in China: the violence is reprehensible and makes China look like an irrational bully. China’s government should reign in this volatile nationalism rather than feed it. This is a dispute that both sides should refer to the International Court of Justice, rather than allow to boil over in the streets. That said, when I look at the underlying question of who has the best claim, I’m sympathetic to China’s position. I don’t think it is 100 percent clear, partly because China seemed to acquiesce to Japanese sovereignty between 1945 and 1970, but on balance I find the evidence for Chinese sovereignty quite compelling. The most interesting evidence is emerging from old Japanese government documents and suggests that Japan in effect stole the islands from China in 1895 as booty of war. This article by Han-Yi Shaw, a scholar from Taiwan, explores those documents. I invite any Japanese scholars to make the contrary legal case. Nicholas Kristof Read the rest of this entry »
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