Questions And Answers From A Troubled Peace Essay
US-East Asia relations (2016 Spring)
Dong il, KIM
1. What are the reasons of the U.S.’s agreement with Japan’s occupation of Korea in the 1900s?
→ First, the U.S. had no vital military and diplomatic interests in Korea at that time. Even in the aspect of economics and commerce, Korea was not important compare to China and Japan. (p.15)
Second, the U.S. disappointed with the deterioration situation in Korea, such as corrupt and incompetent bureaucrats, and even believed Koreans could not govern themselves. The U.S. hoped that Japan would remove corruption and guarantee order in Korea. (p. 15)
Also, the U.S. wanted to pursue its security interest in East Asia and Korea was one of the means of negotiation. For example, in the Taft-Katsura agreement in 1905, a confidential memorandum between the U.S. and Japan, the U.S. accepted Japan’s dominant influence over Korea in return for Japan’s acknowledgement of America’s similar influence over the Philippines. (p.16) In addition, the U.S. President Roosevelt intended to use Japan to counterbalance Russia in East Asia. (p. 16) In this case, Korea would be a buffer zone to prevent the Russia’s expansion.
In my opinion, another reasons is the U.S.’s pro-Japanese view. This view was from Japan’s emergence as a world power after the victory from China(1895) and Russia(1905). As a student of the U.S., Japan successfully achieved the modernization after the Meiji Transformation. The U.S.…