South Korean netizens are apparently up in arms over their president’s choice of shoes that she wore when throwing the opening pitch of the third game of the Korean Series baseball tournament in Seoul on October 27. Her fashion crime? President Park Guen Hye had the “audacity” to show up wearing a Japanese brand of sneakers!
Released earlier this month, the latest iteration of Apple’s operating system for mobile devices, iOS 7, boasts a sleek, vivid interface that is certainly quite a departure from previous iPhone software. Although the majority of Apple’s customers will likely be more than satisfied with both the OS’s stylistic and functional changes, some Korean citizens have taken issue with iOS 7’s Maps application, which refers to the islets located between Japan and Korea – over which there has been much debate – by the Japanese name of Takeshima.
All around the world, young and middle-aged adults have fond childhood memories of giant robot cartoons. I can remember watching Autobots brawl with Decepticons over their endless hunt for energon cubes. Meanwhile, South Koreans were enjoying Robot Taekwon V.
Robot Taekwon V was such a hit that even today the Korean government uses its robot protagonist’s likeness to promote the nation’s claim to ownership of the Liancourt Rocks (Dokdo in Korea, Takeshima in Japan), a disputed island that has recently renewed some tensions between Korea and Japan. However, a recent plan to erect a statue of Taekwon V has been met with strong resistance from South Korean net users who feel that instead of being intimidating, the statue would cause Japanese citizens to laugh.
Ultra-rightist movements in Japan are visible through men who cover their faces with black bandannas, sun glasses and helmets. They drive around in what is as close to an armored van as a Japanese civilian can get and spew military music and political rhetoric from loudhailers fixed to the top of the vehicle. You can hear them coming from miles away and are reminded that the nationalism that led Japan into World War II is still alive to some extent, albeit among a small minority of people.
It is hard to believe, quite shocking in fact, that young Japanese women who don’t appear to have a provocative thought in their head are becoming politically active on the rightist’s side. Read More
Japan and Korea have not been on the best of terms recently, thanks mostly to a territorial dispute over literally a couple of rocks known as Takeshima to the Japanese and the Dokdo islands to Koreans.
As so, now may not be the most welcoming time to visit Korea if you’re Japanese, and vice versa.
To cite an extreme, in Korea there is even one net cafe that has gone so far as to post a sign outside reading: “No Japs Allowed.”
But if you read the fine print, you’ll notice that the management isn’t being completely unreasonable with the ban.