April 24, 2024

The NK News Study Guide Part 2: The Colonial Period

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This week, the NK News Study Guide goes to the root of the Korean question, taking a look at the years of Japanese colonial rule (1905-1945). For centuries, before North and South were divided, Korea had been a unified and mostly independent country, until the late of the 1800s, when Japanese navy forced the hermit kingdom to open its ports to international trade. This was the first step towards the establishing of a protectorate over Korea in 1905 and then a full annexation in 1910, which would drastically alter the fate of Korea, hijacking its journey into modern times. The importance of forty yeas of Japanese rule, between two world wars and the rapid development of new technologies, can hardly be overestimated, as it is essential to understand what North Korea is today and why it behaves the way it does on the international scene.

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