Japan Announces Disputed Islands Are Theirs, China Opposes

Japan Announces Disputed Islands Are Theirs, China Opposes

China has rejected Japan’s ownership claim over a controversial set of uninhabited islands in the East China Sea. Japan announced on September 11 that they have now already “nationalized” the Diaoyu Islands for three years, with Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga saying that he felt regret over China continuing to enter Japanese territory. In response, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Hong Lei said that the islands were inherently part of China, and this would be defended. One netizen said, “Taiwan is China’s, the Diayu islands are China’s, and in the future Japan will also be China’s!”

Source: Netease

Help us maintain a vibrant and dynamic discussion section that is accessible and enjoyable to the majority of our readers. Please review our Comment Policy »
  • Vance

    Pie slice the damn things and be done with it. Each claimant gets a third of the bed where the oil is. China is bigger in area than the US, they ought to have some more oil somewhere and not need to obsess over those rocks.

    • mr.wiener

      Doesn’t matter how much oil is there…it is all about dick measuring now…

      • vonskippy

        Asian dick measuring, the new frontier in micro-management.

        • Alex Dương

          Should I interpret that as an anti-Japanese or anti-Korean bash?

          • Jahar

            I interpret it as a joke.

          • Alex Dương

            How convenient.

          • Jahar

            how convenient? That I see a joke as a joke? and you don’t, right? how convenient.

          • Alex Dương

            Well, if you need it to be spelled out, so be it. A few months ago, I asked vonskippy to cut back on his casual anti-Chinese racism. He quite petulantly protested that he was being unfairly singled out because cS tolerates Korean and Japanese bashing. Of course he provided no examples at the time, but he has provided one himself now.

            You defended him then and agreed with his protest: he was only being singled out because he cracked an anti-Chinese remark. You didn’t say he was joking, although you could have. Now, he’s making a remark that applies to Koreans and Japanese too. What do you say? He’s joking.

            Yeah, I’d say that’s pretty convenient.

          • Jahar

            I thought he was joking at that time as well.

          • Alex Dương

            But that is not how you defended him. You didn’t say “I interpret it as a joke.” You said “I perceive any complimentary comments given about any specific group as racism/prejudice against all other groups, so can we also call out anyone making pro-chinese comments?” You were seriously trying to defend what he said not as a joke.

          • Jahar

            I didn’t say I said it was a joke. And that was me arguing the situation, not my opinion of whether or not it was a joke.

          • Alex Dương

            Exactly. You didn’t say that. Hence, the convenience.

          • Jahar

            you said me saying the recent comment was convenient, not the previous comment.

          • Alex Dương

            No, in context, I said that the combination of your comments is rather convenient. You could have said both statements were jokes, but you didn’t.

          • Jahar

            I see what you meant. You didn’t say it in your original statement, but in the one to clarify. For the previous statement, there was no discussion as to how I actually interpret it. the comment you quoted, as I’m sure you realized, was me being facetious.

          • Alex Dương

            As I stated before, we accept criticism of unfair treatment. We try to treat everyone fairly. If you, vonskippy, or anyone else thinks we can do better, we’ll try. But from my POV, it’s annoying for him to complain that we accept Korean and Japanese bashing, provide zero evidence, and then make a comment like this. Was he joking? Probably. It’s still hypocritical, though.

          • Jahar

            He didn’t provide any, but that doesn’t mean it’s not there. I’ve seen some pretty racist comments directed at the Japanese and western people here. Worse than what he said. And you do tend to defend China and Chinese people more than other groups.

          • Alex Dương

            If you see such comments, please flag them. I tend to miss comments that are made while I’m asleep. Regarding your last point, to take you as an example, you hardly ever criticize Japanese, Koreans, etc. here. (Now, obviously, this is chinaSMACK; it shouldn’t be a surprise that China is the primary focus here and not Japan, Korea, etc.) I can’t “defend” Japan or Korea if you aren’t making any negative remarks about them. Honestly, the worst comment I can recall anyone making about Japan in the recent past is wghUK arguing that Japanese cars suck.

          • Jahar

            Well, I’m actually not really bothered by that type of comment, and I don’t believe we need to censor it. I just think it should be even. So flagging them would go against one line of thinking to support another.

            I live here, so of course I’m more critical of this place. And, yeah, it’s generally the topic of discussion. I had plenty of criticism for Canada and South Korea in the past. And still do, but it’s rarely the time or the place to bring it up.

        • Teacher in China

          The last thing we need around here is another Harry Hogfart. Take that shit to Shanghaiist, man.

      • Vance

        They lose face if they lose the islands? Have you used Google Earth or something and taken a look at the sat view of those things? The largest one is about 3km long by 1 km wide maybe. Most of them are really just rocks.

        • Alex Dương

          They lose face if they lose the islands?

          Yes, but it’s more than that. Losing Diaoyu / Senkaku in essence means they’re never, ever getting the Kurils back from Russia or Dokdo / Takeshima back from Korea.

          • Amused

            I don’t think(correct me if I’m wrong bro) Vance has lived in Asia man. Without soaking up the culture over here awhile its hard to see why otherwise sane people are bickering over a couple of pieces of gravel in the middle of nowhere to the point of rocking the needle toward WW3.

            Of course I’m sure some of our western conflicts look quite strange thru Asian eyes as well….

          • Alex Dương

            Being familiar with the cultures always helps. But in this case, I think Japan’s position is easy to understand even without reference to cultural differences. Japan has island disputes with all of its neighbors, and Diaoyu / Senkaku is the only disputed island it controls. Any country in this position – Western or Eastern – would behave knowing that losing control of the islands means losing all the disputed islands.

          • Amused

            Yeah. And its an unholy mess all left behind from the aftermath and division of spoils of WW2. I guess we should be glad they didn’t do as shitty a job dividing up Japan’s “acquisitions” as the English and French did when they busted up the Ottomans after WW1, but its hard to be happy with the current situation.

          • Vance

            The Japanese cannot use those islands. The national government has prevented the municipality under whose jurisdiction the Senkaku Islands fall from developing them. I would think this is to avoid more serious confrontations with the other contestants. If they all just divided them up, then each could use their part of them. Right now, no one can use them at all. Maybe we just can’t understand. Remember, America had control over a slightly larger group of islands just to the east of those rocks for 50 years. We won that control legitimately through war and the resulting peace treaty from Spain. Then we granted them their independence because they wanted it and it was the right thing to do. We consider ourselves to have gained a valuable ally in the region. We don’t lament the loss of a huge amount of territory. So it is interesting that the common citizens take such a personal interest in the Diaoyu / Senkaku islands.

          • Alex Dương

            I don’t agree that it’s unfathomable for non-Asians. Japan has island disputes with Russia and Korea as well. That’s the key here: losing Diaoyu / Senkaku means the Japanese aren’t ever getting the Kurils or Dokdo / Takeshima back.

          • Vance

            I’ve been in the Philippines a few times, They have been somewhat westernized, but still have quite a bit of “Asianess” about them. They are one if the contestants for the Spratley Islands, along with China and a few other Asian nations, but the Filipinos I know NEVER talk about those. The government is doing what it can for their claims, but the average citizen does not make this a part of their lives. I learned of the Spratleys from American news sources.

          • Amused

            Well bro, every little country over here has a list of grievances over little islands with generally ALL of their neighbors.

            Its just nastier between China and Japan because of the constant anti-Jap propaganda. Try to imagine what Hitler would have used as programming to get folks ready to geek the neighbors pre-WW2 if the tv instead of the radio had been the major media outlet in his day.

            There’s literally not one hour of the day I can turn on tv and NOT see some horseshit show about how China bravely slaughtered the evil Jappos in their millions. Not saying they should forget it all, but this stuff has an effect on the entire populace’s outlook on things; imagine of America was still grinding out WW2 era propaganda and how we’d feel toward the “enemy” of 80 years ago.

          • Jahar

            I’ve recently had students tell me they were taught that the US was on Japan’s side in ww2.

          • Vance

            Why would that be? Apparent weakness from losing them? The Russians and Koreans would not feel the need to talk with the Chinese who would be too weak to hold on to some rocks? Mind you, I understand that no country wants to have territory taken from it that it deems a right to, but what surprised me about these islands is that the everyday ordinary Chinese netizen seems to take it so PERSONALLY. Also, there are huge swaths of disputed territory in the Himalayas that I rarely hear the netizens mention.

          • Jahar

            Because it’s japan, and because of the education system. They often connect all things China the way we connect family. I’ve called hotpot rubbish before and some people take it as a personal affront, as if i said they were.

          • Vance

            They like their hotpot and tiny rocks in the ocean.

          • Alex Dương

            Vance, how would you compare what you perceive as the Chinese netizens’ reactions to these rocks with your perception of certain Americans’ reactions to Kim Davis?

          • Vance

            An interesting exercise. The difference I would think is that the outcome of the situation with Kim Davis might affect the personal lives of common American citizens as we ask and seek answers to the question: What to do when our line of work brings us into conflict with personal beliefs, and do citizens have the right to refuse to perform a duty that is part of their job description in order to avoid this conflict with personal beliefs? Do elected public officials have this same right? These issues could potentially affect the common citizen, so it makes some sense that the everyday Joe would be talking about it. Whereas it does not seem that the situation with the islands personally affects each citizen of the Asian countries involved. While no one wants to see their country lose territory, and disappointment in that prospect is expected of citizens, it surprised me of the personal meaning that common citizens seem to put on it.

          • Alex Dương

            Thanks for your answer. Where I was coming from is my own perception that some protesters are taking the situation very personally and viewing it as an attack on their religious freedom or even as an attack on the moral fabric of America.

          • Vance

            They do. For those that have a religious belief against something, they do not feel they can submit to it. If society decides that it is appropriate to put people in jail for a religious based stance, that causes a real fear among people that is personal. When Kim Davis started her position, it was not a part of her job description to approve gay marriages, so we can’t say she took the job knowing that she would have to test her convictions. I suppose that Kim Davis could have resigned, but they also could have started impeachment procedures. Putting someone in jail for 5 days for not handing two men a paper saying they were married does seem a bit over the top. No one else could have handed the men the paper?

          • Alex Dương

            To clarify, I am not saying this is an exact parallel with Chinese netizens and Diaoyu / Senkaku. For one, it isn’t a “one country vs. another” thing; some view it as a “country vs. itself” thing. But it illustrates that we can take things very personally too depending on what the thing is.

            In this case, the Supreme Court recently ruled that same-sex marriage is legal. So while that wasn’t true when Davis started her job, it is true now. My issue is that she seems to have been given a religious accommodation, but it is not enough for her. Basically, she doesn’t have to issue any licenses to same-sex couples; she just can’t stop her deputies from doing so. She wants no one in her office to issue such licenses.

            Regarding your last question, it’s my understanding that before she was jailed, Davis ordered that the entire county clerk’s office refuse to hand anyone, straight or gay, a marriage license. During her time in jail, 5 of the 6 deputies handed out licenses, the lone exception being her son. This satisfied the judge, hence the release from jail.

          • Vance

            I had not read an extensive article about it so I hadn’t been aware of that angle. It is good news to me because her religious convictions have been accommodated. Her infraction was to prevent her office from functioning in it’s legal duty. I can see the contempt of court there. This is one of those slogan rich issues that do impassion people. “Gay pride!” “Religious rights!” Etc. I guess you could call the islands controversy a similar slogan rich issue. “Infringement of our national sovereignty!”

          • Alex Dương

            Why would that be? Apparent weakness from losing them? The Russians and Koreans would not feel the need to talk with the Chinese Japanese who would be too weak to hold on to some rocks?

            Pretty much.

          • Teacher in China

            Anti-Japanese sentiment still runs really high here, especially in Dongbei. When this island dispute got really hot a few years back, I was living in a small farming town and shit came close to getting serious. People strongly remember what Japan did to their country (thanks, as Amused said, to all the propaganda) and there’s no way the common person is going to let Japan take anything from them. What the value of the rocks is or how important they are in and of themselves is beside the point – it’s only because it’s Japan that people feel so strongly.

  • Alessio Pinna

    Land claims are always in reserve should the “comunist” (lol) regime need a distraction for its masses. Riots starting? They would immediately send some troops to occupy the island, starting an international quarrell that would distract and unify the population. We saw it already happens lots of time, mostly in south america.

  • ThatGuy

    These islands were claimed by Japan in the aftermath of the 1895 Sino Japanese war.

    Japan must not be allowed to keep any land from their empire building days from the late 1800s to 1945.

    On the other hand, China’s claims in the South China Sea is ridiculous.

  • Amused

    Meh. America should have just kept everything we yanked from the Japs. A lot less bullshit and drama that way.

    • Zack Snyder

      All things considered, this is actually not such a bad plan….

  • WghUk

    This is getting boring. Just fight and end the dispute once and forever!

  • lacompacida

    Vladivostok was also stolen from China. What’s more important: Senkaku or Vladivostok ? Now, go get it.

    • James

      we will, one day, you scum

      • mr.wiener

        Dial down the attitude please.

Personals @ chinaSMACK - Meet people, make friends, find lovers? Don't be so serious!»