Korea. It is a country that went through many wars and conflicts in the past and survived through it all to become the country that it is today. We must always remember the ones who sacrificed their lives to protect Korea. When Korea was invaded and taken over by Japan in 1910, everything changed and no one knew what would come for the next 35 years.
In 1910, Japan invaded Korea and attempted to colonize the country. Japan ruled directly through its military for the first ten years. Any Korean who stood up against Japan was suppressed and treated with harsh brutality. Koreans were forced to follow Japanese culture and read and write in Japanese. After the March 1st Movement of 1919, which was a movement against Japanese rule, Japan became a bit less violent and Koreans were able to enjoy a little more freedom than before.
A disturbing fact is how there were Comfort Women. These women were many young Korean women who were forced into sexual slavery for the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. This is one of the many disagreements that Korea and Japan have to this day. Many Koreans were also forced to work in Japanese factories and treated harshly. The people in Korea under Japanese rule were oppressed and felt that they were losing their country.
Finally, after 35 years on August 15 1945, Japan surrendered after World War II and Korea was finally granted its freedom once again. A lot has changed in Korea while Korea was under Japanese rule and many Koreans felt that liberation gave them their long lost country back. It was truly a historical day for Korea and further reminds Koreans to honor the deaths of the ones who have sacrificed their lives for Korea.
Today there are now two Koreas: North Korea and South Korea. Not much is known about North Korea due to their isolation, but South Korea is a highly industrialized country today. South Korea has a booming economy and that boasts the world’s fastest wifi speed. In comparison, South Korea is definitely a much better country than it was many years ago.
Emory University student Justin Kim has stated, “Korea has been through a lot in the past, but it survived through all the hardships to become the country that it is today which makes me proud to be Korean.” We can only hope for the best of Korea as it continues to strive forward and change the world.
Jennie Kim, Grade 11
Immaculate Heart High School