8 Korean Celebrities Labeled “Anti-Japanese” for Their Position on Dokdo
Dokdo, or Takeshima in Japanese, is a small group of rocky islets that lie in between South Korea and Japan. Although South Korea has been deploying its own Coast Guard members to the islets since 1952, and now stations its national police detachment, administrative personnel, and lighthouse staff to the islets, Japan has continuously claimed sovereignty over Dokdo.
It has long been the subject of a territorial dispute between the two countries, and any official comment regarding the islets from either country would easily raise tension in the whole region. However, some of the top Korean celebrities have recently stood up for their country regarding Dokdo, voicing their opinion on this highly-sensitive topic.
In doing so, they put their popularity in Japan at risk, which is one of the largest K-Pop markets in the world. In fact, Japanese local press even labeled these stars “anti-Japanese,” and some have even been banned from entering the country.
Here we put together a list of how some of the top Korean celebrities responded to the whole Dokdo/Takeshima controversy. Some of them didn’t necessarily happen recently, but they should give you a better idea of where they stand on this long-standing territorial dispute.
(Scroll through the list by clicking the arrow at the bottom right!)
Super Junior’s Siwon
This past weekend, Siwon tweeted, “Dokdo is our land.” It was a follow up to his August 10 retweet of the Blue House’s message which said, ““Dokdo is our true territory and it is a place of value that must be protected with our lives. Let’s protect it with pride – at Dokdo.”
Song Il Gook
Song Il Gook joined a relay swimming event to Dokdo on August 15, the Korean Independence Day, in a way to show his support for South Korea’s sovereignty over Dokdo. His drama in Japan was immediately suspended and the Japanese government banned him from entering the country.
Girls’ Generation sang “Dokdo is Our Land,” a popular Korean song with lyrics that say Dokdo is South Korean territory, during the rehearsal of 2008 “Dream Concert.”
Kim Tae Hee
Kim Tae Hee was appointed the official PR ambassador for the Dokdo Loving Campaign in 2005. She even showed up at an official event wearing a shirt that read, “Dokdo is Our Land.”
BEAST is reported to have said “Dokdo is Korean territory” at an event in Los Angles in 2010. They were listed as one of the top 10 “Anti-Japanese Korean celebs” by Japanese media.
Kim Jang Hoon
Kim Jang Hoon also took part in the relay swimming event to Dokdo on August 15. He’s the main person behind all the “Dokdo is Korean Territory” ads that show up in Times Square.
Song Joong Ki
Song Joong Ki is reported to have told a Japanese server while his stay in Japan that Dokdo is Korean territory, and that Kimchi is pronounced “Kimchi,” not “Kimuchi (Japanese way of saying it).”
In 2011, U-Kiss apparently left a message on Twitter, claiming Dokdo as South Korean territory.