‘Cherry Blossoms Are Korean’, Claims Blog On Korean Media

Now that spring is in the process of springing its way through the Japanese archipelago, the focus turns once again to sakura, or cherry blossoms, which have come to symbolize Japanese tradition and culture.

But an article from Searchina, a Japanese language site which features topics on Korea, has garnered over five-thousand comments on Yahoo! Japan for its outlandish — through possibly scientifically accurate — claims that the not-so-humble Japanese cherry blossom is, in fact, Korean. The article comes after Korean media outlets apparently reported on the topic throughout March, as the blossoms began to bloom in the peninsula.

Yahoo! Japan didn’t disappoint: its sakura-loving nationalists were in full bloom.

From Yahoo! Japan via Searchina:

Korean Media: Cherry Blossoms Originate From Korea! The World Recognizes Them As “The Flower Of Japan”…We Need Efforts To Correct That

As Korea awaits the opening of its cherry blossoms, this year too has seen its fair share of articles that extol the origins of the cherry blossom. On March 9, the Halla Ilbo, which is published by Korea’s Jeju Special Autonomous Province reported that although the cherry blossoms that bloom in Washington were sent there from Japan, in fact, the cherry blossom is native to Jeju Island.

The article explained that the cherry blossoms alongside the Potomac River “had been confirmed as being the same as the Jeju king cherry through a DNA analysis by Korean researchers”.

According to the article, in November last year in Bergen Country, New Jersey, a Korean-style garden was created, and Korean cherry blossoms were planted there; however, this was apparently to correct the fact that the cherry blossoms which famously line the Potomac River are mistaken for Japanese trees. Finally, the article claims that efforts are needed to convey to the world that the cherry blossom actually originates from Korea.

In an article dated March 20, the Korean media outlet NEWSIS touched on the subject of cherry blossoms being native to Korea. The article introduced famous spring tourism spots in Japan, but had no hesitation in explaining that regarding the blossoms that “it is accepted by the scholarly world that they are not indigenous to Japan, but are descended from Jeju Island’s king cherry.

The Seoul Kyongje newspaper reported in an article related to the cherry blossom festival that “the most typical mistake that people make about the cherry blossom festival is that it is part of Japanese culture”.

The article explained that “Japan’s cherry blossoms are not indigenous flowers, they were imported from outside the country. However, after many years of cross-fertilization, it is pretty meaningless to try to distinguish whether a blossom is native to Japan or Korea”. The article insisted that although the cherry blossom festival conjures up images of Japan, cherry blossoms were native to Jeju Island. (Editor: Shin Kang-yu)

Comments from Yahoo! Japan:

kon*****:

And? So what? What is this article trying to say?

kok*****:

Ah, so it’s that season already, huh?
This year has really flown by…( ´Д`)y━・~~

yaw*****:

“Sakura of the same year” is the name of an old military song from WWII, wonder if they’re OK with that?

rjh*****:

They didn’t take exception to the fact that the cherry blossom used to be the symbol of the Japanese Empire?

yose*****:

They trot out the same thing every year when it’s cherry blossom season.

kzch狩り:

Isn’t it better to change this from being an article on the origins of the sakura to the origins of the psycho-ra? [note: The netizen plays on the fact that in Japanese cherry blossom is “sakura” but “sakuran” means “deranged” or “confused”.]

sak*****:

Bit early for an April Fool, mate.

SKNAT95773:

So what?

xhx*****:

Who even cares.

yuk*****:

I don’t think it really matters where in the world they have the culture of doing hanami?
There are plenty of examples where in different countries things have happened at the same time.

熱湯代:

They keep going on about origins, but I reckon that it’s just painful for Korea because they don’t have a culture that’s based around the cherry blossom at all.

kka*****:

Sure, sure w They really want anything that’s good about Japan for themselves ~
Thanks for making me laugh again today, Korea.
In the future, just keep doin’ what you do (笑)

kzch狩り:

I say, might I interject?
The cherry blossom is, ummm, used for the rank insignia of both the old Imperial Japanese Army and the modern Self-Defense Forces…?

mimi:

When spring comes, out come the crazies. That’s the level of this article.

猫端会議:

The point is that they’re just not satisfied unless they deny every single one of Japan’s good points.
If they don’t stop being like that, they’ll just be hated.

hir*****:

It’s just nonsense to think that the cherry blossom is only native to Jeju Island.
Blossoms used to flower all over the continent.
Is Jeju Island part of the Galapagos Islands now, or something?….what a load of bull.

red*****:

DNA analysis has shown that the Yoshino cherry and the King cherry are different species, plus it has also pretty much been confirmed that the Yoshino cherry is a hybrid between the double-weeping rosebud cherry and the Oshima cherry.
And anyway, Yoshino cherry is not the only type of blossom….

keel(FA3.6):

This theory shouldn’t really have any basis.
If they discover some new fact, then it’s only reasonable that they should say where they got it from first.

kxg*****

I suppose that cherry blossoms do have something in common with Korea, in the sense that they will die and fall away.
But that’s not where the beauty is.
But, to look at that and they enjoy a good drink probably comes from the same place.

こもれ:

There are more important things for Korean to do than kicking up a fuss about cherry blossom trees and the like.

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  • Butsu

    Shitstorm in 3 2 1

    • Boris

      You got a mix of don’t care and those that do. I am actually quite surprised that all the comments were not having a pop at Korea.

      • tomoe723

        just don’t care anymore.. -_-;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

    • fr hy

      i met some wan wans who insist that Cherry blossoms were invented in Taiwan!!!!

  • 1

    Hahaha

  • Gyopowarrior

    Just spent the last 16 hours screaming at my computer screen as I cut and paste 2-chan comments into google translate….will skip all my classes for today so I can defend Koreas honor on various message boards. I’ve already had to scream and throw tantrums at several netuyo and weeaboo commentators who have dared to express the hate crime of not seeing Korea as the greatest country in the world.

    • Guest

      Sad little Japanese troll, it’s actually the other way around. That’s what makes the irony of your comment so hilarious. South Koreans and Chinese simply don’t care about the Japanese. Yet the Japanese nationalist trolls make 5,000 comments about some irrelevant blog’s comments just to bash South Korea, commit arson on a SK cultural center in Tokyo, demonstrate about killing Koreans including children, and spam Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook endlessly with comments about Koreans and Chinese being terrorist countries. Look at this laughable Japanese Twitter account for example: https://twitter.com/hirochii0

      • Gyopowarrior

        Well done my noble Corean brother! Good job on finding that twitter account, see if you can find some more. I will stalk some other message boards, social media accounts and blogs for the next 10 hours trying to find more hate crimes against the most oppressed people of all time, the Korean male. You too should get on the move I think a good 12 hour shift on yahoo Japan finding stuff to scream and cry about. Its a good job we are both single.

        Those Japanese sure are obsessed with us!

        • Guest

          I’m a Japanese nationalist netouyu. I hate South Koreans and Chinese, so I spend all my time digging up information about what South Koreans, Chinese, Korean Americans, and Chinese Americans did wrong and spam Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook to tell the world about these evil people. Everyday, because I am a hikikimori with mental problems living with my parents, I go digging for articles about South Koreans and Chinese that make them look bad, repost them on 2ch and Yahoo Japan, and bait my fellow nationalists to make 5,000+ comments bashing evil terrorist nations South Korea and China. Everytime a Korean or Chinese does something wrong, I will exploit the situation to make broad generalizations about that country because they are terrorists. Isis may have beheaded Japanese, but they are not the enemy. The real enemy are actually those evil Korean children who are taking jobs and social welfare benefits, and that is why it is important for Nippon patriots to engage in those demonstrations calling for their genocide and calling them cockroaches. Bravo to the brave Japanese patriot who attempted arson on the South Korean cultural center. All members of Yakuza are actually Koreans and Chinese. Nippon is #1 and my country has never done anything wrong. There is no such a thing as the Rape of Nanking, it is 100% made up in the imagination of Chinese. Iris Chang’s book is all falsehood. We were victims of American aggression in World War 2, therefore they are to blame for everything that happened.
          Texas Daddy/Propaganda Buster on Youtube speaks the truth, I cite him as evidence for everything I say, and he is an honorary Japanese citizen as he defends the honor of the honorable Japanese nation.

          • Forest2014

            I am just back from enjoying runs through Cherry Blossom streets, which are splendid and incredible. Spring has came here in Tokyo finally. advise you all that this week would be the best and peak for Hanami. Cheers!

      • Hlynb93

        Both you and @Gyopowarrior:disqus seem like two really sad people to me.
        You both care about Japan and Korea more than the inhabitants of the two countries care about each other, it’s just sad.

  • Liberal arts major.

    Believe it or not there is some speculation that the trees origins are in the Himalayas. The tree then spread to China and obviously Korea, Japan and throughout temperate climates. Neither Korea and Japan like to mention that so much of their culture is rooted in China or in this case the Himalayas via China. The facts won’t stop the two countries from squabbling, they’re just too stunted to stop.

    • James

      Yeah but china originated from korea so youre wrong

      • OMG I Can’t Take it

        Jokes! This makes Koreans look pretty small and petty! This is ours! That’s mine! Hold up! NOthing on this green planet belongs to ANYBODY! We’re all passing through and met this shit here when we got here. No one walking on planet earth has a right to claim anything. Just ridiculous! I actually side with the early posters on this one. Who Cares! If the Japanese have been ceremoniously prided these blossoms for centuries.. it is apart of their culture and tradition! Get your life Korea!

      • Sum Ting Wong

        lmao. in your wet dreams.

      • prin12

        sounds like a troll

        • Sillian

          As obvious as grey hair on a black shirt

    • Guest

      And now its china thats copying japan and south korea. A never ending cycle.

      • takasar1

        long way to go. cultural and technological debts need to be repaid

  • Aoi Komori

    All Somei-yoshino are clones.
    They aren’t increased by their seeds because it’s a hybrid.
    They are increased by grafting(接ぎ木).
    Self-sown Somei-yoshino is impossible.
    Most Korean doesn’t know the fact.

    • besudesu

      That’s really interesting. Glad we have an expert here!

    • Forest2014

      Ms. Sakura Expert。Then does that mean what koreans claim below is false?

      http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20150327-00000043-xinhua-cn

      Interesting.

      Oops Sorry. They seem messing up King Cherry with SomeiYoshino

      Pls Forget

      • Xman2014

        Not many people in Korea care where it comes from. Who cares if it came from Japan or Korea. It’s no different from Japanese not caring about where “kimuchi” (Japanese version of kimchi) comes from. Why is Japanese media all of a sudden making this into a huge issue, is frankly puzzling.

        • Forest2014

          Is Japanese media making that huge issue? or your ilks making this an issue? lol I was just interested how come korean professional botanist make such an simple error. Anyway, it seems one refering to King Cherry and other to SomeiYoshino and seems I am answered already. Thats all. see not an issue here.

  • guest

    Another lame attempt from Search China writing exaggerations (and sometimes outright fabrications), a typical pattern for netoyu’s…. what else do we expect from that Japanese source, disguised as Chinese? This is really getting old.

    • besudesu

      Yeah it’s quite funny how they seem to constantly bait netouyo…but it’s also interesting how people almost always fall for it. The reason this article was chosen for translation was because it rapidly accrued over 5,000 comments, and became the most commented-on article of the day…

      • Guest

        So you are saying Searchina or Focus Asia spewing just lies?

        • besudesu

          Where did I imply that?

  • wrle

    The easiest way to get something popular in japan, whether an article or a book is to write something stupid about south korea.

  • Cysorzowa

    Blasphemy 🙂

  • JapaneseKamikazeWarrior

    How dare these filthy Chosenjins try to steal our sacred and unique culture of Japan that has been handed down to us from our heavenly Japanese forefathers for ten thousand years! Korea stop stealing Japan’s culture! Cherry blossoms are unique sacred Japanese property, how dare you steal this precious tree from us! If you dare to trespass against our Japan, just be sure that we will defend it with our lives!

    • Gyopowarrior

      You see, this is typical of the hatred we oppressed Korean males from the bay area have to put up with everyday. We surely are the eternal victims.

      But no more! I have formed a club. It is called Korean Loyalists Oppressed by Weeaboo Nerds or KLOWN for short.

      KLOWNs job is to monitor anti Korean hate crimes from our parents basement and defend Korea one message board at a time.

      Yesterday was the first KLOWN cyber meeting. Charlie Park from Vancouver reported that he had read on the internet that 127 million people led by the emperor himself took part in an anti Korean march in Tokyo yesterday, sadly he has no evidence for this because he was crying and screaming at the computer so much his mom yelled at him to stop and he spilled sunny D all over his keyboard and couldn’t remember the link to the report (Charlie at 35 is our youngest member so we must forgive his boo boos!)

      Next Kenny Kim from Auckland reported that he suspects his sister of being a traitor to the Korean people as she has recently bought a Honda. Pah gyopo women with their “social lives” and “careers” and “friends” what do they know of defending the motherland? Kenny’s legs started shaking when he went to confront her so he retired to the basement to throw a tantrum. A true patriot.

      As for me, I reported what my noble brothers on Japan crush have been saying, especially “guests” report on an arson attack on a SK cultural center. The sinister Japanese cabal responsible for my lack of employment, girlfriend and my obesity must have covered up this story as there’s been no reports of an arson attack. I know it happened because the minjok are genetically incapable of ever telling a lie!

      All hail KLOWN!!

      • ZAITOKUKAI

        SHUT UP GOOK LOVER. GO SUCK ON ROTTEN KIMCHI. YOU GOOK FACE. DIE COCKROACHES. GET OUT OF JAPAN!

        • David

          Wow, a foul mouth, a racist brain, no sense of humor AND a small penis. Some people have all the bad luck.

          • guest

            Ironic, all the things you said actually describes you. You have a foul mouth, a racist brain, no sense of humor, AND a small penis. He’s a troll and the fact that you fell for the trap shows that you have no sense of humor. Also, only racist cunts are the ones who believes in the whole “Asians have a small penis” stereotype.

          • David

            Says the person who is so ashamed of their comments that they don’t even sign in with a name. Hard to take anything you say serious when you don’t even identify yourself (among all the other reasons for not taking anything you say seriously).

          • guest

            I don’t care if you don’t take my comments seriously. If you think that taking people seriously on the internet is important, then I’m sorry, but you fail at life

          • David

            ouch an unknown teenager has told me I fail at life.

          • sonical9

            Why are you getting trolled so easily…….

      • IDHotmail

        You must Taiwanese pretending to be Korean. Like that fucking guy from Youtube ( Bart Fart and Joe Blow). Two fucking taiwanese- viet acting like Korean. Giving all Koreans bad names.

        • Lansdow

          He’s pretty funny though. The truth hurts, aye?

          • Guest

            It’s not the truth though. When the trolls target ONE ethnicity constantly with their distorted version of reality, it becomes clear they have an agenda.

      • Guest

        Are you calling me a liar, Japanese pretending to be Korean (as they do all the time on social media)?
        http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2015/03/27/national/crime-legal/south-korean-embassy-tokyo-hit-suspected-arson/#.VR8QKTpFCcy

  • ImInLoveWithTakoyaki

    smh. Something like this making it to the Yahoo front page. Cherry Blossom didn’t even originate from either Korea or Japan.

  • Forest2014

    Another day goes by here in JC. never change

  • commander

    Cherry blossoms are a symbol of a lively and sentimental spring, evoking romantic nostaliga from those gazing at flower flakes spiraling down to the ground in the breeze.

    Given the universial affection for this light pink-colored flower tree, it is futile to have a squabble over its origin.

    Let’s set aside unwarranted arguments, just enjoy the flourishing cherry blossoms.

    • Xman2014

      I don’t see any squabble at all. It’s mostly just big media noise out of Japan over nothing.

      • commander

        I couldn’t tell whether all of this is all about a sensational report stoking nationalism.

        But what should be noted here is that “just big media nosie of Japan over nothing” has some resonance with some Japanese, and that may explain in party why the media will continue to put out this kind of report.

      • jgs

        Honestly, this is not even covered in major media in Korea unlike Japan.
        Most Koreans still think Cherry Blossom trees are Japanese.
        And don’t really care about the origin.

        • diodram

          Nobody cares in Japan too.

          • jgs

            Nobody cares in Japan, yet this is one of the most viewed news in Japan? smh…

          • Guest

            You are NOT correct, diodram, as there are 5,000 comments about this topic. The Japanese have a history of digging up dirt on the Koreans and bashing them? Why are they so obsessed with the South Koreans, and to a lesser degree, the Chinese, and making them look bad? Nobody cares in South Korea or China. Also, why do the Japanese like you deny something like this that is clearly true? What is it about the truth that people from your country cannot accept?

          • FF

            What ever you say, the majority of Korean thinks ” Japan stealing Korean culture” Japanese starting to get sick and tired of South Koreans

  • UserID01

    Most people’s opinions on this in a nutshell:

    • James

      Your mom

  • IDHotmail

    Japan Island were connected too Korean Peninsula. Last time I checked Korean DNA O2b 99.9 percent Japanese carry within there DNA. Plus anyone or anybody get over excited on this topic. 99.9 percent of Koreans do not even care Cherry blossom originated from Korea, Tibet, China , or Japan.

    • guest

      Most Japanese have Korean genetics but Koreans hate them. North Koreans are Koreans but South Koreans hate them and vice versa. My point is this…..Koreans hate each other

      • KamenTeacher

        How can you hate genetics. Did Japanese fall from the sky?? Like it or not. It was Koreans invaded island called Japan. Koreans invaders interbred with Ainu settlers. Japanese Ethnic race was born to be called Japanese. No such thing as North or South Koreans. We call Koreans they live in Korean Peninsula. In island called Japan 99.9 percent carry Korean DNA ( 02b). If they have so much hate then they should kill themselves. That is not Korean people faults.

        • Yorgos

          That’s an over-simplification if I ever heard one. 02b is at most like 32% of the male population of Japan. And it’s not specifically Korean. It’s found also in Vietnamese and Cambodians and all over Asia. And Koreans have more O3 from Han Chinese. And that’s just paternal line.

          • KamenTeacher

            O2B is 90 percent of Koreans. 03 derived from South East Asian migration to Korea during Koryo Dynasty that would be 10 percent.

          • Yorgos

            Korea is not that homogeneous in YDNA. Take another look. Also O3 is a lot more than 10%( not to mention female lines from southeast and China ) . Anyways, these haplogroups formed before either Japanese or Korean ethnnogenesis took place.

          • KamenTeacher

            03 is not Chinese or China Genes. 03 originated from South East Asia not China. Koreans have Mongolian/ Manchurian racial DNA. Japanese have Korean and Ainu DNA. All four Altaic Ethnic groups have O2B genes originated from Korean Peninsula and Manchuria.

          • Yorgos

            Not ” Chinese” but it arrived with Chinese speakers.

          • Eidolon

            Mongolians have very little O2B and it’s simply wrong to call it “Korean DNA.” No respected genetic expert calls it that in the literature. Stop spreading Korean nationalism.

          • Eidolon

            Have the courtesy to perform *basic* fact checking. O2b reaches ~30% in Koreans, ~32% in Japanese. O3 reaches ~40% in Koreans, ~20% in Japanese, and ~53% in Chinese.

            And I love how you designate O2b the “Korean DNA” even though Koreans have less of it than Japanese, but then turn around and call O3 “Southeast Asian” even though Chinese have an equal/greater amount of it than Southeast Asians.

            FYI, these haplogroups emerged 10,000+ years ago, before Koreans, Japanese, and Chinese even came into existence. Trying to equate them with your ethnic group is a form of gross bigotry.

          • KamenTeacher

            03- South East Asian Origin ( Does not reach 40 %). 02b Korean Peninsula/ Manchuria origin it has far reaching effect than what Wikipedia suggest.

          • Eidolon

            I’m afraid it does, and it isn’t South East Asian origin. Wikipedia isn’t the best source but it QUOTES its references, which is what makes it accurate:

            Kim 2011, 44%: http://www.investigativegenetics.com/content/2/1/10

            Kim 2007, 43%:
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1766463/

            Wells 2001, 35.6%:
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC56946/

            The first article has the largest sample n=506. The last article only has n=45. The big studies, esp. those around Seoul, show again and again ~40%.

            Sorry, but DNA studies don’t help you here.

          • KamenTeacher

            02b is Korean or Korean-Manchurian. Chinese call it Sino-Korean DNA. No such thing as Sino-Korean DNA. China build Great Wall for a reason. Manchuria or Sino-Korean DNA was never part of China/ Chinese DNA.

      • Shameful

        Agreed!! If they weren’t hating, they wouldn’t be Koreans!

        • hi from Korea

          i always say this.

          at the same time, thats sad, but…meh

      • Seou1Korea1

        If you cannot write with logic. Refrain yourself.

  • Balkan

    “…had been confirmed as being the same as the Jeju king cherry through a DNA analysis by Korean researchers”. Of course – when Korean researchers confirm that cherry blossoms are Korean, they’re being completely objective. Oh, wait…

    So far Koreans have claimed that Confucius was Korean, that Dragon Boat Festival was Korean and now this. This trend in Korea related to claiming many elements of Chinese and Japanese cultures being actually Korean is nationalistic, ridiculous and annoying.

    • Sillian

      So far Koreans have claimed that Confucius was Korean, that Dragon Boat Festival was Korean and now this.

      Nope.

      http://www.chinahush.com/2010/06/25/national-sentiment-controlled-by-rumors/

      • Eidolon
        • Chucky3176

          Eidolon. I always knew you were a phony, whenever pleading neutrality and non-bias. But this shows your true nature. And this is all you got? From a little known publication that nobody even heard of called “Sky Daily”? He’s a no name expert who’s most people never even heard of, who says that Koreans are underestimating its own history. Yeah right, Eidolon, this is all you got for your agenda. right? Give us one mainstream Korean source that claims Confucius was Korean? Give us one evidence that these are being taught in Korean school classes. Give us one evidence that this is what majority of Koreans believe. You can’t, because you got none.

          Yet, you’ll be the first one to come to the defence of the Japanese revisionists. You’ll be the first one to defend Japan for hate marches, saying they don’t represent the majority of Japanese. Ha ha.. yeah right. Phony hypocrite.

          • Eidolon

            Coming from you, that’s rich. You are a *moderator* on a forum which defends Hwanppa writers, whose admin outright believes in the Hwandan Gogi, and whose members regularly talk about how Chinese and Japanese civilization and rulers all come from Gojoseon, and which demands that Korea “reclaim” all territory from Beijing to Primorsky.

            I, on the other hand, was asked to provide a source for “Koreans have claimed that Confucius was Korean” and did so directly. Oh, he’s not mainstream, you say? Well, no shit, Sherlock, because mainstream Korean historians don’t associate themselves with KKKoreansentry and talk shit about Japan & China at every opportunity, 24/7.

            But you do, and you’re proud of it, even. So being called a “phony hypocrite” by you is all sorts of irony, the bulk of which, I imagine, flies right over your head.

        • Chucky3176

          One of the comments in that article says this:

          “개소리 좀 집어치워라. 미친 환빠새끼들”

          Translation: “Stop this bull shit story, you crazy Hwanpa bastards”.

          “Hwanpa” refers to followers of Korea’s “Hwandan Gogi” movement – a small fringe group of historic nationalists who nobody in Korea takes seriously, who are often ridiculed and treated as lunatics by most Koreans.

          You might as well link to group of crazy people who believe in the UFO, Eidolon, and claim that’s what most Americans believe.

        • Sillian

          Do you see he’s essentially complaining that his view is not taken seriously by the mainstream in Korea? He’s not even historian, either. Who even reads ‘skyedaily’? The fact that you even managed to dig up this random opinion piece is a bit creepy. Who cares about this type of guy’s random and irrelevant claim? Certain Asian nationalist netizens who always seek for reasons to bash Koreans. The way they sniff around every corner of Korean footprints days and nights is truly beyond belief if you can actually observe it first-hand. There is a remarkably huge network of anti-Korean websites in Japan for example. I’m not gonna refrain myself about this. They are truly creepy giant stalkers. I can’t put it any other way. Sure, you can go ahead and highlight the fact that there exists this guy in Korea if that makes your day bright. The problem begins when that turns into “(average or mainstream) Koreans claim or believe this or that!”, which has been the popular propaganda method. In fact, I’m sure you know the drill.

          • Eidolon

            First off, that’s not the only article I’m able to cite with regards to this claim, Sillian.

            Second, I don’t see any equivalence between the statement “Koreans have claimed …” and “most Koreans believe …”

            Third, you quoted an article that argues that these accusations against Koreans are *fabricated rumors*. I am showing you, through the link, that they are *not*.

            Rather, they are *exaggerations*. There are actual Koreans who propagate these claims, and they get quoted by Korean online news sources, which are then picked up by Japanese/Chinese netizens, who then *exaggerate* the claim by irresponsible generalization, ie instead of “이을형 claims Confucius was Korean” they say “Koreans claim Confucius was Korean.”

            But so what? “Koreans have claimed Confucius was Korean” is a factual statement. “Most Koreans believe Confucius was Korean” is not. The best you’re able to do is argue that Korean claims get exaggerated and generalized disproportionately by Japanese and Chinese netizens, but I’d argue that this happens because Korean ultra-nationalists are simply louder and receive greater attention from Korean news sites.

            And it’s not limited to Koreans in Korea. Check out this guy: http://www.amazon.com/Asian-Millenarianism-Interdisciplinary-Taiping-Rebellions/dp/1934043427, who makes a career out of making noises about his great Hwanppa cult and the fact that all East Asian cultures and religions come from Korea.

          • Sillian

            Second, I don’t see any equivalence between the statement “Koreans have claimed …” and “most Koreans believe …”

            When you say “Koreans have claimed….”, does that not sound general to you as in “Koreans eat Kimchi”? It certainly sounds very different from “There are some Koreans who have claimed…” Let’s not play around. You know exactly what I’m talking about, seeing as how you have access to the ‘stalk Koreans’ database.

            Third, you quoted an article that argues that these accusations against Koreans are *fabricated rumors*. I am showing you, through the link, that they are *not*.

            Do you see that the link I posted shows you how they went as far as to even create imaginary Korean figures or journals? Isn’t that outright fabrication? Why do you think they even did that? When it comes to fringe ridiculous claims, I don’t know about China but Japan has had a fair share of them.

            http://homepage3.nifty.com/boumurou/tondemo/gishi/gishi.html

            What gets blown out of proportion depends on what agenda-driven people, especially those who have access to the media, focus on and how much effort they consistently put in to influence people’s perception.

          • Eidolon

            When you say “Koreans have claimed….”, does that not sound general to you as in “Koreans eat Kimchi”?

            I’m sorry, but when does the population of an entire country ever make claims as an unit? Your interpretation is absurd. When Koreans complain about Japanese, Chinese, Westerners, etc. claiming this and that, they are not referring to the entire population of Japan, China, and the West making a claim, are they? Why is this any different?

            Do you see that the link I posted shows you how they went as far as to even create imaginary Korean figures or journals? Isn’t that outright fabrication? Why do you think they even did that? When it comes to fringe ridiculous claims, I don’t know about China but Japan has had a fair share of them.

            The existence of false rumors with respect to outrageous Korean claims does not thereby indicate that all such rumors are false. I actually did my homework with respect to a solid dozen of those claims, and have found that many, even most, of them are based on actual Korean claims. The persons and institutions named are not necessarily correct but given how inaccessible the meat of the Korean internet is to people without Korean SSNs and how few Chinese and Japanese read hangul, it is understandable that fact checking is limited.

            But again, just because they were wrong on X does not indicate they were wrong on Y. That is the logical fallacy hidden in the “rumors” article, which tried to paint all rumors against Koreans as false.

            What gets blown out of proportion depends on what agenda-driven people, especially those who have access to the media, focus on and how much effort they consistently put in to influence people’s perception.

            Obviously, but the constant whining that Koreans are the eternal victims of dastardly Japanese and Chinese nationalists needs to stop.

            Koreans have gained a reputation for making outrageous claims in recent times, such that “Koreans invented the universe” has become a running joke in East Asia and among expats. This reputation is not merely the result of a nefarious cabal of Japanese and Chinese agent provocateurs, but is – to an even greater degree – the product of a very loud group of Korean fringe scholars/writers who are able to find voice through both the Korean media and internet circles.

            From declarations of Korean being the most scientific/superior language in the world: http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/2011/12/korean-is-worlds-most-superior-language.html to the statement that Korea ruled Beijing: http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2015/04/180_164607.html, not to mention the KBS programs about Korea colonizing eastern China, Japan, and even the Philippines, there is a constant litany of sensational stories coming out of Korea exaggerating/distorting/overplaying themselves/their own achievements. But it isn’t just limited to what comes out of Korea. Jon Norris, an expat writer, calls it a trope of the Korean experience: http://jonnorris.work/korea-mother-of-invention/, and indicates that the ultimate source is within Korea itself, whereby such obviously not Korean items as sandwiches and bicycles are claimed to be Korean due to simple ignorance.

            It is also not to say that Japanese and Chinese don’t suffer from the same ignorance within their population, but they don’t publicize it to the same degree, especially not on a per capita basis. For example, I know for a fact that there are Japanese who believe that Genghis Khan was Japanese. But when was the last time you heard about this claim in international media?

            The bottom line is that Koreans have a reputation for the sort of activity that led to this sensationalized “cherry blossoms” article in the first place, and rather than blaming Japanese and Chinese for spreading rumors, the productive response is to look at why, exactly, segments of Korean society get off on promoting how great Korea is constantly to the outside world.

          • Sillian

            I’m sorry, but when does the population of an entire country ever make claims as an unit?

            Why don’t you ask those Asians why they took it that way then? The annoyance comes from the fact that the discourse did not just stay on the level of “This specific blah blah guy said blah blah”. Let’s say you stop a random Korean on a street and ask him, “This guy said Confucius was Korean for some reason. What do you think?” Then what would be the average response? “Confucius? Wasn’t he Chinese? Random.” They would shrug and move on because it is probably one of the last things they care about in life. Irrelevant. However, just how much generalized crap talking about Koreans has been generated from that? Now keep stopping more Koreans on the street and yell at them. “Why do you guys claim Confucius is Korean!?” Who’s supposed to be mad here? I’m being nitpicky about certain expressions because absurd generalizations have been precisely the source of annoyance.

            The persons and institutions named are not necessarily correct but given how inaccessible the meat of the Korean internet is to people without Korean SSNs and how few Chinese and Japanese read hangul, it is understandable that fact checking is limited.

            I’m not sure about China again but Japanese internet has no shortage of netizens who monitor every corner of the Korean internet and news sources, and it seems other Asians who can read Japanese get to take a peep at their ‘database’. Many Taiwanese learn Japanese, don’t they? Then they may look at Korea through the Japanese eyes. Don’t worry about their ‘inaccessibility’. The network of passionate Japanese nationalists is enormous. I keep hearing about KoreanSentry here and there. Sure, they are a bunch of weirdos but the website is not even something that can be remotely compared in size except that it is in English so they are visible. Also, SSNs are not required if you just want to read the vast majority of high-traffic Korean websites.

            But again, just because they were wrong on X does not indicate they were wrong on Y. That is the logical fallacy hidden in the “rumors” article, which tried to paint all rumors against Koreans as false.

            I realize that not every report was out of nowhere, but it does seem a considerable portion of such reports included fabrications or exaggerations to a degree. When I say fabrications, I don’t mean spelling mistakes. I mean imaginative creation of names and such. Let’s just say they were lazy with fact-checking and just copied random blog posts.

            Obviously, but the constant whining that Koreans are the eternal victims of dastardly Japanese and Chinese nationalists needs to stop.

            No, it doesn’t need to ‘stop’ because it is the plain truth. And it is not one way, of course. The general populace of any country are ‘victims’ of hateful nationalists that target them with an agenda. They do not deserve such harassment. Simple as that.

            such that “Koreans invented the universe” has become a running joke in East Asia and among expats.

            Among expats? What makes you think expats even care about something petty like that between Asians? The odd ball Jon Norris blog? I can definitely see he has spent time reading a lot of blogs here and there and collected those things to put under the theme of the day for his blog entry. When I first skimmed through his blog post, I thought he was joking. The Jesus drawing he included doesn’t even mean Jesus was Korean. I don’t even know whether he was serious. The pizza video was obviously in jest, but, see how it was abused by….those Asians. Also, the Chinese culture article he put is the one countered by the link I posted. And then the All Your Culture Are Belong To Us video was uploaded by a Japanese netizen, as predictably. What do these have in common? The things Asians have used against Koreans and the expat picked them up from the Asia-related blog sphere probably at face value because he doesn’t have much awareness about the unnecessarily complicated inter-Asian ball game. The only thing from his own experience is the sandwich anecdote and it seems to be about general ignorance or communication error. There is absolutely no underlying context for why the first sandwich ever made on earth must have been from Korea. There is nothing special about sandwiches. That is one strange and interesting anecdote if his reconstruction of it is all true. I bet you can find similar anecdotes about weird ignorance in China, too. And then he does more blog scavenging for a few articles. The only thing I found relevant is the airplane article because the title is indeed eye-catching. But the article is basically plain like “according to old record blah blah, flying cart blah blah”. The writer could’ve used a better level-headed title, but it isn’t a crime to introduce the fact that usage of some sort of flying device was recorded. The article does mention that research about the flying cart is in infancy. All in all, the blogger Jon recycled what has been recycled to death.

            It is also not to say that Japanese and Chinese don’t suffer from the same ignorance within their population, but they don’t publicize it to the same degree, especially not on a per capita basis. For example, I know for a fact that there are Japanese who believe that Genghis Khan was Japanese. But when was the last time you heard about this claim in international media?

            Who knows really after all? Japan has their share of nationalist or pseudo historians. One famous controversy revolved around the theory that a Japanese kingdom ruled the southern Korean peninsula between 4th and 6th century. It was abandoned by mainstream Japanese historians decades ago because it didn’t make sense in overall circumstances but the nationalist historians couldn’t let go of it and it is included in a few Japanese textbooks as a legitimate theory, too. So what? Let historians keep arguing. Not all of them make strong claims. The mainstream will judge what claim has the strongest basis. It’s their job. Those who made weak claims undermine their own credit.

            With Korean pseudo historians, I have noticed two things. After China’s Northeast project became a hot topic in Korea a decade ago, their voice got louder. “Throw any jab against Chinese history.” Another thing is that there still remains some stigma against Japanese cultural elements in Korea so they have been stingy about giving full credit to certain Japanese things.

            So what am I trying to say after all? If you have a problem with this or that person who claims this or that, argue with them. Stop dragging the vast majority of people who couldn’t care less about all that obscure stuff into it.

          • Eidolon

            Why don’t you ask those Asians why they took it that way then? The annoyance comes from the fact that the discourse did not just stay on the level of “This specific blah blah guy said blah blah”. Let’s say you stop a random Korean on a street and ask him, “This guy said Confucius was Korean for some reason. What do you think?” Then what would be the average response? “Confucius? Wasn’t he Chinese? Random.” They would shrug and move on because it is probably one of the last things they care about in life. Irrelevant. However, just how much generalized crap talking about Koreans has been generated from that? Now keep stopping more Koreans on the street and yell at them. “Why do you guys claim Confucius is Korean!?” Who’s supposed to be mad here? I’m being nitpicky about certain expressions because absurd generalizations have been precisely the source of annoyance.

            This isn’t unique to Asians. Ask any American, and they’d tell you they get crap for what other Americans do. It’s simply human nature, and is besides the argument, because the argument isn’t that “every Korean believes X” but “Koreans claimed X.” You tried to tell me that “Koreans never claimed X” so I corrected you. Had you said “yeah there are Koreans who claim X but most Koreans don’t believe it,” I’d not have responded.

            I’m not sure about China again but Japanese internet has no shortage of netizens who monitor every corner of the Korean internet and news sources, and it seems other Asians who can read Japanese get to take a peep at their ‘database’. Many Taiwanese learn Japanese, don’t they? Then they may look at Korea through the Japanese eyes. Don’t worry about their ‘inaccessibility’. The network of passionate Japanese nationalists is enormous. I keep hearing about KoreanSentry here and there. Sure, they are a bunch of weirdos but the website is not even something that can be remotely compared in size except that it is in English so they are visible. Also, SSNs are not required if you just want to read the vast majority of high-traffic Korean websites.

            The Japanese may stalk Koreans but I assure you that you do not need to go very deep to find these claims. They are all over the place, get picked up by online news sources in Korea, and are not hidden in private corners of the web. On the other hand, verifying the details is tricky because that does require you to access certain institutional websites, scholarly papers, etc. which are behind paywalls/SSN walls, and to know Korean, because while the claims frequently get translated to English, Japanese, Chinese, etc. and are pasted to youtube, 2chan, baidu, etc., the details are not.

            Among expats? What makes you think expats even care about something petty like that between Asians? The odd ball Jon Norris blog? I can definitely see he has spent time reading a lot of blogs here and there and collected those things to put under the theme of the day for his blog entry. When I first skimmed through his blog post, I thought he was joking. The Jesus drawing he included doesn’t even mean Jesus was Korean. I don’t even know whether he was serious. The pizza video was obviously in jest, but, see how it was abused by….those Asians. Also, the Chinese culture article he put is the one countered by the link I posted. And then the All Your Culture Are Belong To Us video was uploaded by a Japanese netizen, as predictably. What do these have in common? The things Asians have used against Koreans and the expat picked them up from the Asia-related blog sphere probably at face value because he doesn’t have much awareness about the unnecessarily complicated inter-Asian ball game. The only thing from his own experience is the sandwich anecdote and it seems to be about general ignorance or communication error. There is absolutely no underlying context for why the first sandwich ever made on earth must have been from Korea. There is nothing special about sandwiches. That is one strange and interesting anecdote if his reconstruction of it is all true. I bet you can find similar anecdotes about weird ignorance in China, too. And then he does more blog scavenging for a few articles. The only thing I found relevant is the airplane article because the title is indeed eye-catching. But the article is basically plain like “according to old record blah blah, flying cart blah blah”. The writer could’ve used a better level-headed title, but it isn’t a crime to introduce the fact that usage of some sort of flying device was recorded. The article does mention that research about the flying cart is in infancy. All in all, the blogger Jon recycled what has been recycled to death.

            Expats don’t go around looking for these experiences. It happens to them, and then they report it with the same wide-eyed incredulity that Jon surely had when he was pulled aside by a Korean teacher who tried to explain to him that sandwiches were invented in Korea. Jon certainly isn’t the only expat I know who’ve had experiences of this sort in Korea. Between Korean tourist guides telling their charges that hundreds of ancient technologies – the bulk of which were not invented in Korea – were invented in Korea to everyday ignorance of the form Jon experienced, it’s becoming a stereotype.

            Who knows really after all? Japan has their share of nationalist or pseudo historians. One famous controversy revolved around the theory that a Japanese kingdom ruled the southern Korean peninsula between 4th and 6th century. It was abandoned by mainstream Japanese historians decades ago because it didn’t make sense in overall circumstances but the nationalist historians couldn’t let go of it and it is included in a few Japanese textbooks as a legitimate theory, too. So what? Let historians keep arguing. Not all of them make strong claims. The mainstream will judge what claim has the strongest basis. It’s their job. Those who made weak claims undermine their own credit.

            With Korean pseudo historians, I have noticed two things. After China’s Northeast project became a hot topic in Korea a decade ago, their voice got louder. “Throw any jab against Chinese history.” Another thing is that there still remains some stigma against Japanese cultural elements in Korea so they have been stingy about giving full credit to certain Japanese things.

            There are certainly nationalist revisionists in China and Japan. They’ve simply been less visible in recent years when it comes to the ancient history & culture subjects. On the other hand, Japanese WW 2 revisionism is making a comeback under Abe and is stirring a lot of tension throughout East Asia. So it’s simply a case of different priorities for revisionists.

            So what am I trying to say after all? If you have a problem with this or that person who claims this or that, argue with them. Stop dragging the vast majority of people who couldn’t care less about all that obscure stuff into it.

            That’s what I try to do. But it doesn’t help when you come in with a blanket article arguing that all the Korean pseudo-history claims are fabrications by Chinese and Japanese netizens. That just shifts the blame to other ‘broad swaths of people who couldn’t care less about all that obscure stuff.’

          • Sillian

            This isn’t unique to Asians. Ask any American, and they’d tell you they get crap for what other Americans do. It’s simply human nature,

            Americans get crap for what influential American political leaders do for example because they are supposed to indirectly represent the American public, but do they get blanket crap for some weird stuff like scientology?

            and is besides the argument, because the argument isn’t that “every Korean believes X” but “Koreans claimed X.” You tried to tell me that “Koreans never claimed X” so I corrected you. Had you said “yeah there are Koreans who claim X but most Koreans don’t believe it,” I’d not have responded.

            Many Asian netizens have gone the way of broadly generalizing Koreans using a few random individuals’ claims but sure, you are not one of them. Fair enough.

            The Japanese may stalk Koreans but I assure you that you do not need to go very deep to find these claims. They are all over the place, get picked up by online news sources in Korea, and are not hidden in private corners of the web. On the other hand, verifying the details is tricky because that does require you to access certain institutional websites, scholarly papers, etc. which are behind paywalls/SSN walls, and to know Korean, because while the claims frequently get translated to English, Japanese, Chinese, etc. and are pasted to youtube, 2chan, baidu, etc., the details are not.

            I learned the existence of ‘skyedaily’ from you. What does this tell you? There are literally thousands of Korean online news outlets. In May 2013, there were 4,222 registered internet news sites in Korea. Most of them have extremely small numbers of readers. How did you even manage to find the article from skyedaily in the first place? From some Korea-related blog? It means there are people who specifically target and fish for such posts rather than randomly coming across it by luck because it’s just ‘all over the place’.

            Expats don’t go around looking for these experiences. It happens to them, and then they report it with the same wide-eyed incredulity that Jon surely had when he was pulled aside by a Korean teacher who tried to explain to him that sandwiches were invented in Korea. Jon certainly isn’t the only expat I know who’ve had experiences of this sort in Korea. Between Korean tourist guides telling their charges that hundreds of ancient technologies – the bulk of which were not invented in Korea – were invented in Korea to everyday ignorance of the form Jon experienced, it’s becoming a stereotype.

            Expats are relatively worldly people. The amount of general ignorance in the populace is always surprising to people like you and me because we usually know much better than the average and sometimes assume that other people would know just as much. Having said that, who normally goes around asking people or talking about where this or that originally came from? I’m saying it is one of the least relevant things that concern your average expat’s mind in Korea. Of course, if you specifically try to dig it up and search for it with good keywords, you will find a few anecdotes on the internet. In Jon’s post, you can see that he uncritically put together anything from the internet he’s read before that seems to reinforce this view. My impression is that he was already influenced by what he read on the internet before because of the way he put those ridiculous things in his post as I assume he did it seriously. I think the only ‘origin confusion’ that is at least remotely relevant and consistent in everyday life context in Korea comes from the things that were popularized during the Japanese occupation period. As I said, there seems to be some sort of stigma attached to them. It seems this upset Japanese nationalists and they went on stalking mode in this direction. It was found that 2ch Japanese netizens discussed in details about how to divert Chinese netizens’ attention to Korea in 2005 when there were anti-Japanese riots in China. That was already 10 years ago.

          • Eidolon

            Americans get crap for what influential American political leaders do for example because they are supposed to indirectly represent the American public, but do they get blanket crap for some weird stuff like scientology?

            Ever wonder why Yankee carries derogatory undertones? To a lot of Europeans, especially, Americans are practically identical to “rednecks,” though actual rednecks make up a small % of the American population. Scientology hasn’t caught on primarily because of how weird it is, rather than because people never generalize across Americans.

            I learned the existence of ‘skyedaily’ from you. What does this tell you? There are literally thousands of Korean online news outlets. In May 2013, there were 4,222 registered internet news sites in Korea. Most of them have extremely small numbers of readers. How did you even manage to find the article from skyedaily in the first place? From some Korea-related blog? It means there are people who specifically target and fish for such posts rather than randomly coming across it by luck because it’s just ‘all over the place’.

            You fixate on the skyedaily article, but I’ve given you several others. Further, the skyedaily article isn’t a site op ed. It quotes a former ROK politician. And just to make it blunt that his case isn’t isolated, I give you this:

            http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/culture/2014/04/135_154714.html

            “The ministry’s latest move, however, reaches a new level in absurdity. Meeting with a group of historians last month, Education Minister Seo Nam-soo said that the ministry is considering requiring textbook publishers to rewrite their chapters on ancient Korean history to incorporate “non-mainstream” views.

            Such views may include arguments from the few but feverish defenders of “Hwandan Gogi,” a collection of texts on ancient history that is widely considered modern forgery, according to people close to the discussions.”

            Whether this is a storm in a tea cup, when you have the ministry of education in the ROK involved in spreading awareness of fringe history, it’s very easy to be seen. The article mentions that the defenders of Hwandan Gogi are few and feverish, yet here they are making headlines.

            Isn’t it awfully too easy to dismiss the negative reputation Koreans have gained as the outcome of Japanese agent provocateurs when the Korean media puts such stories in the spotlight themselves, without any provocation/digging?

            Again, while you may take issue with Jon’s article for being one of a few isolated cases, the fact of the matter is that the Korean media and internet nationalists are making it rather easy. Japanese netizens certainly had a hand in getting the ball rolling, but I myself have seen a fair enough share of Korean nationalists spreading the same views on popular English language websites – including old usenet groups – to know that the Japanese aren’t the only ones involved.

    • Korean

      Chinese still believe this shit? Still????

    • Guest

      China now claims that the cherry blossoms are Chinese!

      http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/blooming-row-over-cherry-blossoms-splits-china-s-korea-japan

      Chinese claim everything is from China, so don’t anyone touch the sacred Chinese culture.

  • YourSupremeCommander

    Koreans invented the brick, therefore the Great Wall of China should be Korean.

    • Sum Ting Wong

      Human beings originated in Africa, so you are African.

  • Cerise

    I’m a little disappointed ‘sakuran’ was translated as ‘whacko-ra’ and not ‘psycho-ra’.

    • besudesu

      Hahaha. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that. You’re a genius.

      I will amend the translation — yours is better!

  • Guest

    Of course, Korean created the universe, I can’t believe there’s even argument about this.

  • bumfromkorea
  • bumfromkorea

    Also, cherry blossoms cross so frequently to the point where some are questioning whether it’s even meaningful to make distinctions between the two species. Most likely, any significant difference between the cherry blossoms in the two countries are purely geographic. One thing’s for sure – the Korean variant was NOT the “origin” of the Japanese variant. Whether the *old* Korean variant (again, remember the “promiscuity” of cherry blossoms) *contributed* to the *modern* Japanese variant is still up in the air… and frankly irrelevant.

    What we do know for a fact is that the culture of enjoying cherry blossoms as it exists in Korea today do stem from Japan. There’s a reason why the nationalists cut down most of the cherry blossoms in the Changgyeong palace.

    • Xman2014

      Also, the Japanese media seems to suggest that this is what most Koreans believe, based on couple of some theoretical articles in Korean in which most Koreans have never even heard of. So it’s interesting how the media can dig up such little known articles in Korea and make a big issue out of it as if that’s what’s the majority believes. But like I said before, most Koreans don’t care, nor do they think Korea is the origin of Japanese cherry trees. If anything, this Korean article says that the origin of cherry trees of Korea and Japan comes from the Himalaya

      https://mirror.enha.kr/wiki/%EB%B2%9A%EA%BD%83

  • Dave Park

    It must have been a slow news day… South Korea has more important issues to concern themselves with than the origins of a cherry blossom tree.

    • hi from Korea

      strange enough, they never do…..

  • Seou1Korea1

    99.9 percent Koreans do not care. Another case of Taiwan Twat Network brown nosing Japan!!!!!!!

  • Brain1Science1

    Cherry blossoms are not sacred. In reality, it is very superficial tree.

    • guest

      99.9 percent Japanese don’t think that cherry blossoms are sacred. Just beautiful to see.

      • Brain1Science1

        for few days.

  • I agree with the netizens…It’s fine if it originated in Korea, that doesn’t mean it’s any less culturally significant to Japan.

  • Roger Dat

    What a delightful site to take a stroll around Tokyo as the cherry trees are in full bloom. http://favy-jp.com/topics/13

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