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Japanese-South Korean relations under American occupation, 1945-1952: The politics of anti-Japanese sentiment in Korea and the failure of diplomacy

Posted on:1989-08-24Degree:Ph.DType:Dissertation
University:The University of IowaCandidate:Cheong, Sung-HwaFull Text:PDF
GTID:1476390017455641Subject:Asian history
The dissertation analyzes Japanese-South Korean relations from 1945 to 1952 and the reasons for the failure of these two anti-Communist countries to normalize diplomatic relations at a time when the United States exercised a strong influence in both countries. It argues that as an autonomous force popular anti-Japanese sentiment in Korea did not play a major role in preventing normalization of relations between the two nations. Rather, the main reason for the diplomatic deadlock between Japan and the ROK was the political posturing of President Rhee who manipulated popular anti-Japanese feelings in order to stabilize his regime. It addresses how such diplomatic issues as the fishery dispute, financial claims, the territorial dispute, and the legal status of Korean residents in Japan emerged as political weapons in Korea which political groups manipulated to their own advantages.;The dissertation evaluates the extent to which the U.S. tried to assist the normalization of relations between Japan and the ROK as part of a Cold War strategy in the Far East. It also examines the American, Japanese and Korean views toward the San Francisco Peace Treaty and the first conference of normalization of diplomatic relations between Japan and the ROK. It argues that at least at this juncture the American interest was disengagement from Korea rather than actively forging an anti-Communist alliance between Japan and the ROK. By the end of 1952, such major issues as the war reparations and the peace line, which Rhee himself had created, penetrated the public minds to such an extent that it was no longer possible for the Rhee government to abandon these positions. Thus, the dissertation concludes that public antagonism towards Japan only became an obstacle to the normalization of diplomatic relations between Japan and the ROK after Rhee deliberately drummed up anti-Japanese sentiment as part of a calculated policy which originated in his own political insecurity.
Keywords/Search Tags:Japan, Relations, Korea, American, Rhee, Political
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