Chemulpo(Inchon) 1904

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Peter H
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Chemulpo(Inchon) 1904

Post by Peter H » 01 Mar 2007 12:47

http://populargusts.blogspot.com/2006/1 ... on-of.html
The best known of the early battles, Japan's surprise attack on the Russian fleet at Port Arthur (just after midnight on Febrary 9), was actually preceded by a smaller, mid-afternoon engagement on Febrary 8 near the Korean port of Chemulpo (present day Incheon), when the Russian gunboat Korietz exchanged fire with the Japanese squadron which had approached the harbour. The Korietz quickly retreated back to harbour, and, along with the larger cruiser Variag, had no choice but to watch as the Japanese began landing troops nearby just after 6pm.

The Japanese took no further notice of the Russian ships until the disembarkation of their troops had been carried out, a process which was commenced immediately and was carried out through the night with great celerity and in the most perfect order. [...] This force belonged to the 12th Infantry Division under General Inouye, and consisted of 2,500 men.

By four o'clock on the morning of the 9th the process of disembarkation had been successfully completed, and the-soldiers had all found their pre-arranged billets on shore. The Japanese squadron then put out to sea once more, and waited for daylight before taking any action. At seven o'clock, however, the captain of the Varyag was served with an ultimatum from Admiral Uriu declaring that hostilities had broken out between Russia and Japan, and summoning him to leave the harbor by midday. Should he refuse to do so, then the Japanese fleet would be compelled to attack the Varyag and the Korietz within the harbor. A correspondent of a London paper who was present on the spot states that the commanders of the other warships stationed at Chemulpo namely, the British cruiser Talbot, the Italian Elba and the French Pascal, held a meeting and drew up a strong protest addressed to the Japanese Admiral against his proposal to attack the Russian vessels in a neutral port.

In the end, the Russian cruiser and gunboat decided to sail out to engage the Japanese, even though they were hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned, facing as they were "two battleships, six cruisers, and twelve torpedo craft." The battle began at 11:30 am, and within an hour a crippled Variag limped back to port. The Variag was set on fire, and, as the Japanese admiral had threatened to attack at 4:00 pm, it was decided to scuttle the gunboat Korietz as well, as Colliers reported:

At precisely four o'clock, two deafening explosions came from the "Korietz" and a cloud of thick gray and black smoke billowed upward. As the smoke cleared on the hissing, boiling water, where the "Korietz" had been, only bits of wreckage and about four feet of her after funnel could be seen.

The 12th Division lands at Inchon:

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MacArthur followed in these steps 46 years later.

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Post by Peter H » 01 Mar 2007 13:48

From: http://international.loc.gov/cgi-bin/qu ... ext:@field(DOCID+@lit(mtfgc0010))
THE RUSSIAN GUNBOAT "KORIETZ" BLOWING UP IN CHEMULPO HARBOR

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Post by Kim Sung » 01 Mar 2007 14:01

The photo of 24 wounded Russian POWs cared by the Japanese doctors and nurses after the naval battle in Inchon.

* Image Source : 'The History of Port Inchon' (인천 개항사)
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Post by Kim Sung » 01 Mar 2007 14:18

Japanese navy's surprise attack on the Russian fleet in Chemulpo

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Koriets fighting against Japanese battleships

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Sinking of Koriets (Кореец) and Varyag (Варяг)

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Post by Kim Sung » 01 Mar 2007 14:28

A Russian naval officer in Chemulpo just before the Russo-Japanese War

* Image Source : 'Les Heros de Chemulpo' (제물포의 영웅들)

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 02:13

Two years later.

Photos of Korea,circa 1906.

http://freekorea.us/?p=5528


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Seoul,with Kwanghwamun Palace in background.

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 02 Mar 2007 02:32

Peter H wrote:Seoul,with Kwanghwamun Palace in background.
Kyungbok Palace is a correct name. Kwanghwamun is just the name of the main gate in Kyungbok Palace. I'm in Kwanghwamun now.

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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 05:45

The Japanese "destroyed" the Palace?

http://www.gkn-la.net/history_resources ... mskang.htm
In the first years of the colonial era, all but ten or so buildings of Gyungbok Palace were torn down, the entire southern wall was destroyed, and Ganghwa Gate was removed stone by stone to the eastern wall. In 1912, a German architect by the name of Georg de Lalande, who was residing in Tokyo, was hired to design the Japanese Government-General Building in Korea. The construction of the massive five-story, neo-Renaissance style granite structure began in June 1916 and was completed in October 1926. The complex was erected on the front part of the palace grounds, completely eclipsing what remained of the place.

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Post by Kim Sung » 02 Mar 2007 06:27

Here is my current location.

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Post by Kim Sung » 02 Mar 2007 06:34

Peter H wrote:The Japanese "destroyed" the Palace?
Yes, the Japanese tore down some parts of the Palace and moved Kwanghwamun about 10m backwards.

The red arrow indicates the current location of Kwanghwamun. Seoul municipal government is conducting a project to move back Kwanghwamun to its original location.

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Post by Kim Sung » 02 Mar 2007 09:09

Back to the topic, new Koriets and Varyag visited Inchon in February 2004 to pay a tribute to their predecessors who were sunk 100 years ago. In total, 770 Russian

Comeback after 100 Years


On their visit, they faced a strong protest from Korean civic organizations which insisted that Russia should apologize to the Korean people for the Russo-Japanese War because Russia also fought to colonize Korea, not to protect Korea.

Korean protest against Russians' establishing their memorial for their fallen seamen of Varyag and Koriets

In my opinion, Russia was also a colonial power just as almost all western powers had been. But it's still not evident how much malicious intentions Russia had toward Korea.

My former professor Han Sung-Jo (한승조) wrote in a Japanese right wing magazine that Japanese colonial rule was a blessing for the Koreans because it prevented Russian colonial rule that would have been much harsher than that of Japan and that might have been led to Sovietization of Korea. For that controversial behavior he had to quit his job in my university and was completely ostracized from the Korean society.

On the interview with a Korean reporter on their visit to the memorial for Varyag and Koriets, the Russian ambassador to South Korea said "The Varyag made an effort to protect sovereignty of Korea at that time."

It is a moot point whether his remark is true or not.

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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 13:26

Han Sung-Jo may be right but think of the implications of a Russian victory in 1905 on Korea.

Much like Mongolia it becomes a Soviet satellite in 1918.

Japanese expansion is blocked into Manchuria,and perhaps then China.This limits a Pacific War as well.

Another Soviet-Japanese war starts in the 1940s.

No Korean War.One unified Korea.

No Stalinist North Korea state one assumes.

The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 means the communist state of Korea throws off its shackles and evolves into a free market democratic state as many of the former Warsaw Pact became.

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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 13:36

Further findings:

http://www.uhpress.hawaii.edu/journals/ ... 0p246.html

By the turn of the century, Japan emerged as the strongest power in Korea, according to Duus. When Katsura Tarò became prime minister in 1901, one of his goals was to establish a protectorate in Korea. A major obstacle, however, was Russia, whose presence in Manchuria was growing after 1900. Duus sees three options for Japan at this time: the partition of Korea, the neutralization of Korea, and the so-called exchange of Manchuria for Korea. When Japan approached Russia with the third option, the latter added conditions that included the demilitarization of Korea in the exchange. Since Japan "saw Korea as a keystone of national defense" , the negotiations hit a snag, and animosity between Russia and Japan heightened. In May 1903, when Russian troops occupied Yongamp’o, Japan decided on war against Russia in order to settle the Korea problem once and for all. The Russo-Japanese War allowed Japan to gain significant inroads on the peninsula. After landing its troops there, Japan forced the Korean government to sign a protocol in February 1904 whereby Japan obtained the right to occupy strategic areas for the war against Russia in return for the Japanese pledge to "guarantee the independence and territorial integrity" of Korea.

Then, in May 1904, the Japanese government adopted a blueprint that embodied the consensus of both moderates and advocates of a more aggressive policy. On the premise that "the fate of Korea so directly affected the security of the Japanese empire that no other country could be allowed to swallow it up," the blueprint aimed "to acquire full rights for a protectorate over Korea and to acquire key economic rights as well" The adoption of this blueprint was a momentous decision. "For the first time since the decision to open Korea in 1876," writes Duus, "the Japanese leadership had committed unequivocally to assuming direct political control over Korea" He insists that not until May 1904 did the Japanese leadership reach consensus on extending direct political control over Korea, that until that time the Japanese policy had been tentative. Once the decision was made, Japan proceeded to establish a de facto protectorate at all levels of the Korean government, even before signing a treaty to that effect. In April 1905, when victory in the war against Russia became clear, Japan decided to go through the process of signing a formal protectorate treaty, and sent Itò Hirobumi to Korea for that purpose. Here, Duus gives a balanced description and analysis of the signing of the treaty, including the recent assertion made by Professor Lee Tai-jin (Yi T’aejin) that the original document of the treaty discovered in the Seoul National University Library lacked the authentic signature of the Korean emperor and his official seal.

....Duus concludes with a thought-provoking discussion of Japanese imperialism toward Korea. He argues that Japanese imperialism in Korea was "an act of mimesis" , whereby Japan practiced what it had learned from the Western powers while itself remaining a victim of the predatory powers. On the controversial issue of whether the Meiji leaders intended from the beginning to annex Korea, Duus observes much "tentativeness" in the earlier policy, leading him to conclude that not until May 1904 did the Meiji leaders reach a consensus on complete domination. While mimicking Western practices, Japan nevertheless developed its own characteristic style of imperialism. First, Duus asserts that Japanese imperialism was defensive in nature. The perception of Japan’s military "backwardness" led the Meiji leaders to develop "a ‘paranoid’ vision of the international order," and to justify the annexation of Korea "as a means of protecting their country" . Second, because of the relative "backwardness" of the Japanese economy, large capitalists in Japan were in general indifferent to colonial development; instead, "the shock troops of Japanese imperialism in Korea were," according to Duus, "not powerful metropolitan business interests but restless, ambitious, frugal elements from the middle and lower strata of Japanese society" . Finally, Japan’s own experience of overcoming "backwardness" in the immediate past led the Japanese to claim that they could introduce the Korean people to "civilization" better than any one else, and thus they insisted that "Japan was helping the Koreans to improve themselves" , not exploiting them, just as family members help each other....

....Western scholars have also frequently asserted that the Japanese decision to annex Korea arose out of concern for its own security needs. Duus follows a similar line: "The debate over the future of Korea revolved around how best it could serve Japan’s national defense needs" In fact, one of the main arguments Duus presents is that the constant anxiety over Japan’s security led the Meiji leaders to annex Korea in order to preempt other powers from taking control of their neighbor. Implied in this argument is that the Japanese annexation of Korea was a defensive move rather than an act of aggression. If Japan was indeed acting in its own security interest, there was really no need to annex Korea at the time it did in 1910. There was no international power in Korea that posed even a remote threat to Japan after 1905. Having defeated China and Russia militarily in 1895 and 1905, respectively, Japan made a successful diplomatic move to gain a completely free hand in Korea with the full support of both Great Britain and the United States. By 1905, all of the four powers that may have had some interest in the matter had already conceded Korea to Japan. Thus, security could not have been the real reason for Japan’s annexation. Rather, the security concern was an excuse it used to justify its act of aggression.

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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 13:41

Home-Coming of the Chemulpo Crews
GENERAL BARON KAULBARS ADDRESSING THE SURVIVORS OF THE " VARIAG " AND "KORIETZ" UPON THEIR ARRIVAL IN ODESSA
For weeks Odessa prepared for the reception to the Chemulpo survivors. Arches, banners, and Venetian masts made the streets brilliant and the arrival of the steamship bearing the survivors was greeted with salvo after salvo of great guns. As a special mark of favor, Minister de Plehve, who has since been assassinated, raised the prohibition against patriotic demonstrations
SAILORS OF THE "VARIAG'' AND "KORIETZ" CROSSING THE RIVER TO THE WINTER PALACE AT ST. PETERSBURG
THE HOME-COMING OF THE CHEMULPO CREWS
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http://international.loc.gov/service/gc ... 070108.gif


The Russians were released by the Japanese?

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Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2007 13:44

Home-Coming of the Chemulpo Crews
CHEMULPO SAILORS MARCHING THROUGH THE STREETS OF ST. PETERSBURG
Wherever the Chemulpo survivors appeared the Russian crowds followed them with intense enthusiasm. At Odessa the crowds swept through the police lines and bearded men kissed the bronzed cheeks of the sailors as though they were their sons. Hundreds fought to touch the hands of the men who had been through the baptism of fire at Chemulpo. At Sebastopol the reception was of a more military character, but no less impressive. Vice-Admiral Skrydloff himself addressed the survivors. At Moscow the enthusiasm was the same
CHEMULPO JACKIES AT THE WINTER PALACE, ST. PETERSBURG
These men have just received their gifts from the Emperor, who granted an audience to the officers and men who had survived Chemulpo. Their war medals are pinned to their blouses and other gifts which they received are wrapped in napkins which each sailor is holding in his hand. Gifts of money, jewels, and clothing were showered upon the survivors by all classes of Russian people. All St. Petersburg was decorated and the welcome could not have been greater had the survivors come as victors instead of as the vanquished
HONORING THE SAILORS WHO FOUGHT AT CHEMULPO
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http://international.loc.gov/service/gc ... 090110.gif

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