Over the past year the relationship between South Korea and Japan has come under stress as the two countries have exchanged barbs on trade, history and the relationship at large. But the historical ties were once good, or in the very least good in relative terms. However, there have been several South Korean lawmakers who had used harsh language about the Japanese Emperor as he relates to the Japanese view of history from 1910 to 1945. Japan has apologized for the aggressive stance and treatment of the Korean people but more recently, the South Koreans have elevated the issue – again.
Donald Trump has a strong relationship with both leaders, the South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. “I like both leaders,” Trump said. “I like President Moon. And you know how I feel about Prime Minister Abe. He is very special guy.” President Moon spoke to Trump for diplomatic support.
Our View: There has been a troubled history between Japan and Korea, with relations improving in the past 20 years. However we are now seen a cold period on diplomatic relations and perhaps President Trump can tigger action that brings these two Asian powers together. In South Korea, 7 in 10 people have a negative view on Japan, we hope that the 2020 Olympics can change the tone between these close neighbors.