Fight Over Rocky Islets Opens Old Wounds Between South Korea and Japan

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October 9, 2012 by Water Wisdom

By CHOE SANG-HUN October 09, 2012
今年已有15万名韩国人登上独岛

CHOE SANG-HUN 报道 2012年10月09日

DOKDO/TAKESHIMA — As they do on any fine-weather day, ferries on Thursday disgorged hundreds of South Korean tourists at these desolate islets. Some charged onto a wharf, waving the national flag and shouting “Daehanminguk manse!” — “Long live the Republic of Korea!” Others unfurled a “Dokdo is our territory” banner and snapped group photographs.

独岛/竹岛——上周四,像在任何一个晴好的日子里那样,几百名韩国游客从一艘艘渡船上涌出,登上这些荒凉的小岛 。一些人冲上码头,挥动国旗,呼喊着,“大韩民国万岁!”另外一些人展开“独岛是我们的国土”的横幅,集体合影。

The visitors were part of the flood of tourists who have visited this year — 153,000 and counting — amid a flare-up of long-simmering tensions over the islets, which are administered bySouth Korea but also claimed by Japan.

伴随着岛权争议的激化,今年已经有15.3万名韩国人登上这些小岛,而且登岛的人数还在增加。这些岛屿由韩国控制,但日本也声称拥有主权。

There is little for tourists to do here except express their sentiments. The islets are treeless volcanic outcroppings where the wind sometimes blows so strongly that the few residents fortify their windows with duct tape and spend their time dodging bird droppings during the spring migration of gulls. The outcroppings would, in fact, probably be an afterthought if not for the territorial dispute, which centers as much on Japan and South Korea’s fraught history as it does on claims of the rich fisheries nearby.

在岛上,游客们除了表达情绪之外,没什么可做的。这些小岛是火山喷发形成的。岛上没有树木,居民寥寥无几。有时风力强劲,岛民得用宽胶带加固窗子,每年春季海鸥迁徙的时候,鸟粪纷纷落下,令居民避之不及。其实,若不是事关领土纠纷,这些火山岛可能并不容易被人们想起来。这一领土纠纷,不仅关系到两国对岛屿附近丰富渔业资源的争夺,其核心也关系到日本与韩国的历史冲突。

The territorial debate over the islets, known as Dokdo in South Korea and Takeshima in Japan, is one of several simmering in Asia that some analysts fear could lead to hostilities, many of them tied to China’s rise and its increasingly assertive claims to territory in the South China Sea. But experts say the increasingly shrill disputes between Japan and its East Asian neighbors, including China and South Korea, are potentially more explosive because the animosity is rooted in good part in anger over Japan’s brutal dominance of both countries decades ago rather than solely in a fight for natural resources.

韩国称这些小岛为独岛,日本称之为竹岛。独岛/竹岛之争,是亚洲酝酿中的一些领土争端之一。有些分析者担心,这些争端将会引发敌对状况的发生。其中许多争端与中国崛起,及其对南海主权的日益坚定的态度有关。但专家称,日本与中、韩等东亚邻国之间愈演愈烈的尖锐矛盾,之所以具有触发危机的可能,更因为仇恨不仅仅只扎根于对自然资源的争夺之中,而是出于对日本几十年前野蛮侵略的仇恨。

On Dokdo/Takeshima, such anger is palpable.

在独岛/竹岛上,这种仇恨情绪显而易见。

Kim Seong-do, one of only two South Koreans who live here but do not work for the government — the other is his wife — is perhaps more animated than most on the subject, but strong feelings over the islets are widespread.

金相道(Kim Seong-do)及其妻子是岛上仅有的不为政府工作的两名韩国居民。提到这个话题,金相道可能比大多数人都更加激动。但人们对这些小岛的强烈感情是很普遍的。

“If the Japanese come to take this place by force,” said Mr. Kim, 73, “I say ‘Give me a rifle.’ ”

73岁的金相道说,“如果日本人来强占这里,我会说,‘给我一把步枪。’”

South Korea’s leaders have generally tried to keep quiet about the islets, assuming that any discussion would play into Japan’s hands. But in recent years, the government has been more aggressive in staking its claim.

韩国领导人一直试图对这些小岛保持沉默。他们认为,一讨论这个话题,就会给日本可乘之机。但是近年来,韩国政府在对其宣布主权时,更加坚定有力。

In August, President Lee Myung-bak became the first South Korean president to visit. That trip — and his subsequent suggestion that the Japanese emperor did not need to travel to South Korea unless he apologized unequivocally for Japan’s colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula — set off an unusually strong reaction in Japan, where a weak government has been pushed by a small but vocal group of nationalists to take a stronger stand on territorial disputes.

8月,韩国总统李明博(Lee Myung-bak)登岛。他是第一个登岛的韩国总统。他随后暗示道,除非日本天皇就日本对朝鲜半岛的殖民统治明确道歉,否则天皇不必访问韩国。李明博此次登岛及其随后的暗示,在日本引起了不同寻常的强烈反应。日本一群人数不多但声势浩大的民族主义者不断推动弱势的政府,要求政府在领土争端问题上采取更强硬立场。

Last month, the South Korean government opened a small Dokdo museum in Seoul that displays documents and ancient maps that the government says uphold its claims to the islets.

上月,韩国政府在首尔开放了一家小型独岛博物馆,展出政府认为能够支持其对该群岛主权文献及古地图。

The South Korean government continued its public relations campaign on Thursday, agreeing to fly reporters for Western publications to the islets and allowing rare access to the armed police officers who guard against intrusions by Japan.

周四,韩国政府继续其公关活动,同意用飞机运载西方媒体记者前往这些小岛,并且罕见地允许他们接触武装守卫人员。守卫人员保护岛屿不被日方闯入。

The government PowerPoint presentation included a well-known song in South Korea that says in part, “Hi, Dokdo, did you sleep well last night?”

政府的幻灯片演示中有一首在韩国非常有名的歌曲,其中的一句是这么唱的,“嗨,独岛,你昨晚可曾安眠?”

The nationalistic sniping between two of Washington’s crucial allies over these specks of land serves as a reminder of the trouble that the United States faces as it tries to “pivot” back to Asia. The standoff contributed to South Korea’s decision to back out of an agreement, supported by the United States, to share military intelligence with Japan.

这两个对美国至关重要的盟友之间围绕这一小片群岛产生的民族主义唇枪舌战是一种提醒,提醒着美国在试图“重返”亚洲时面临的困难。这一僵局促使韩国决定退出了一项同日本共享军事情报的协议,该协议曾得到美国的支持。

Some historians and security analysts say Washington is partly responsible for the troubles.

一些历史学家和安全分析人士表示,美国应为这些麻烦负部分责任。

Japan says it reconfirmed its sovereignty over the islets in 1905 when it incorporated them into one of its prefectures. But South Korea sees that move as part of Japan’s forced annexation of the Korean Peninsula, which was completed in 1910.

日本表示,在1905年就再次确认了对这些小岛的主权,当时日本将这些小岛划归其治下的一个县管辖。然而,韩国将此举视作是日本武力吞并朝鲜半岛的一部分。1910年,日本完成了对朝鲜半岛的吞并。

While leading the negotiations to redefine Japan’s territory afterWorld War II, Washington did not clarify who owned the islets. After the so-called San Francisco Treaty, which set the terms of Japan’s surrender, went into force in 1952, South Korea declared the islets as its own, and since 1954 it has kept a police contingent there.

二战后,华盛顿方面尽管领导了重新界定日本领土的谈判,却没有阐明这些小岛的归属。所谓的《旧金山和约》(San Francisco Treaty)于1952年生效,该合约规定了日本投降的条件。之后,韩国宣称这些小岛为韩国领土,且自1954年后便在那里派驻了警察部队。

The redistribution of the Japanese Empire after its defeat was “part and parcel of today’s problem,” said Alexis Dudden, a history professor at the University of Connecticut.

康涅狄格大学(University of Connecticut)历史学教授亚力克西斯·杜登(Alexis Dudden)表示,日本战败后对日本帝国疆域的重新分配是“今天问题的主要原因”。

The cold war tamped down the disputes. But now, Ms. Dudden said, the region’s territorial fights have become “perfect for competing narratives about the war, which is precisely why increasingly younger generations with no wartime or colonial experience themselves are able to use them for the purposes of stories they wish to tell.”

冷战压抑了领土纠纷。然而,杜登表示,当前该地区的领土争端已经成了“对战争做不同的表述的绝佳话题。这也正是为什么一代又一代越来越年轻的人能够利用这些争端去实现自己想要的对历史的讲述,尽管他们自身并没有经历过战争和殖民统治”。

Over the years, South Korea has responded to Japan’s recurring claim by adding a wharf, a helipad, a generator, solar-energy panels and a tank that transforms the sea into drinking water. The government also gave street names to the steep stairways zigzagging the cliffs, and so far over 2,100 South Koreans have registered as Dokdo residents though they do not live here.

多年来,面对日本反复声称对该区域拥有主权,韩国在独岛增设了一个码头、一座直升机升降场、一家发电厂、太阳能电池板以及一个将海水转化称饮用水的水槽,以此作为回应。政府还给沿着悬崖盘旋的陡峭阶梯命起了街道名。迄今为止,已经有2100多名韩国人登记为独岛居民,尽管他们并不住在这里。

On Thursday, the Taepyeongyang No. 7, a 4,000-ton police patrol boat, prowled the waters around the islets, keeping watch for a Japanese Coast Guard ship that circles once every four days or so, sailing in international waters.

周四,4000吨级的警方巡逻艇“太平洋七号”(Taepyeongyang No. 7)在小岛附近的水域巡逻,监视着一艘日本海上保安厅(Japanese Coast Guard)的船。日本的这艘船在国际水域行驶,每四天左右会进行一次环岛航行。

“It’s not supposed to come within 12 miles of Dokdo,” said the Taepyeongyang’s captain, Superintendent Chung Myong-ho. “If it does, we will warn it and then ram it, or worse. But so far nothing like that has happened.”

“它不能进入独岛周围19.3公里的范围,”“太平洋七号”巡逻艇的船长郑明浩(Chung Myong-ho)警长说,“如果它进入了这个范围,我们会发出警告然后对其实施驱逐,或者采取更厉害的措施。不过截至目前,还没发生过类似的事情。”

Despite the many hardships of living here, it has become a sacred duty among many young South Koreans to defend the islets from what Senior Inspector Lee Kwang-sup, commander of the police contingent, calls a “mean, vulgar and unrepentant nation” across the sea. Twenty to thirty times more police recruits than the government-set quota volunteer to serve here.

尽管在这里生活面临着诸多艰辛,但在许多年轻人中间,捍卫这些小岛不受与其隔海相望的日本的侵犯已经成了一项神圣的职责。 高级督查、驻扎在独岛的警队指挥官李光习(Lee Kwang-sup)称,日本是一个“卑鄙、粗俗、顽固不化的国家”。自愿前往独岛工作的新警员的人数比政府设定的名额多出20至30倍。

Kwon Se-hyon, 19, is one of those who secured the posting. Mr. Kwon is a college student who grew up loving Japanese comic strips and animated cartoons and believing that Koreans have a lot to learn from Japan. Still, in April, he joined 150 police recruits competing for seven open slots on Dokdo, where 45 officers are stationed.

19岁的权世炫(Kwon Se-hyon)便是一名获准前往独岛工作的新警察。作为大学生的他,从小喜爱日本的连环漫画和动画片,而且相信韩国人有很多地方需要向日本学习。但他还是在4月同新招募的另外150名警察竞争设置在独岛的七个公开岗位。现在有45名警察被派驻在独岛。

“I didn’t want to miss this very special opportunity for a Korean man,” he said.

“我不想错过这个对韩国人来说非常特殊的机会,”他说。

翻译:梁英、陈亭

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