For those who haven’t heard, South Korea has signed a defense pact with Japan:
The two countries began discussing the agreements last year. The deals don’t mean that South Korea and Japan will fight for each other in a war. But they represent one of the last important steps forward in a bilateral relationship that, for several decades now, has flourished in economic and political terms.
A spokesman for the South Korean military said the pacts will cover humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and the exchange of military information. Media accounts in both Japan and South Korea said they also cover acquisitions and logistics (except for weapons) and peacekeeping operations.
Both countries are military allies of the U.S., which has been eager for several years to see some sort of formal relationship develop between the South Korean and Japanese militaries. In one sign of that, the U.S. welcomed Japanese observers to a joint naval exercise between the U.S. and South Korea in 2010, several months after North Korea’s attack on the South Korean warship Cheonan.
This is the first time since being liberated from Japanese annexation in
What will North Korea have to say about this, and will that affect the way it interacts with the South? Does China have any input on this? Or does this just further China’s pre-existing notions about Koreans as “棒子” (“Clubmen” if you will, from the idea that Koreans carried out a lot of the dirty work of Japanese military and agents during World War II).