NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN (ALMOST)
24th August, 1910 : The threat of street rioting hangs over Seoul today following the anouncement that within a week Japan intends to carry out the formal annexation of Korea. Japan is already in control of every aspect of Korean public life, but the decision to annex the territory is bound to lead to fresh troubles. Ever since the “Hermit Kingdom” became a protectorate as a result of the Russo-Japanese war, Koreans have demonstrated fierce hatred of their new masters. Rebellions have been suppressed by the Japanese with an iron hand. There is a long history of Japanese interference in the affairs of the Korean Peninsula which has resulted in rivalry and conflict with the Russians because they, too, have been expanding their interests in Korea from the territory they control in southern Manchuria. That culminated in the Russo-Japanese war in which Russia was heavily defeated. The ensuing peace treaty in 1905 sanctioned Japanese domination of Korea.