Koreans were disturbed with a claim that their country was part of China reportedly stated by U.S President Donald Trump.
During an interview with “The Wall Street Journal”, U.S President Donald Trump made the following statement. The American President was reportedly quoted on the statement when he met Chinese President Xi Jin Ping last April 12th.
“Xi Jin Ping then went into the history of China and Korea. Not North Korea, Korea. And you know, you’re talking about thousands of years and many wars. And Korea actually used to be part of China.”
— U.S President Donald Trump
The wording of Trump’s statement makes it unclear whether the statement was made by Chinese President himself or was a claim of Trump’s own, though most media attributes the statement to President Trump himself.
In an interview with University of Southern California history professor, Kyung Moon Hwang, Quartz ironed out some of the possible reasons Trump may have thought this.
The first is that Korea, during the Han dynasty in the second century B.C., was connected to China via 4 commanderies (administrative districts) that had been established in northern Korea. This did not mean Korea was “part of China” any more than India was a part of England. In other words, the two countries were not unified.
The second possibility is that, during the days of the Mongol Empire, Korea and China fell under Mongol rule. In this instance, Korea was, again, not a part of China but perhaps it could be argued part of the same thing (i.e. Empire) as China.
Nevertheless, Kyung Moon Hwang unequivocally denied the validity of Trump’s statement.
“No respectable historian would make such a claim.”
— Kyung Moon Hwang
Koreans have been reacting to the statement ever since it was reported locally. The historical claim is considered false and Koreans felt disturbed by the public statement made by the American President.