Talk:Kuril Islands dispute

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Map of Kurils[edit]

Anyone have a better map of the disputed islands? Magellan has a good one and a few other websites have a decent map. Can we use those? 01:20, 6 December 2005 (UTC)D

Japan, as well as the United States, later claimed that the Yalta agreement did not apply to the Northern Territories since the Northern Territories were technically not a part of the Kuril Islands which is an obvious and easlily refutable lie.In fact ALL Japanese pre-war and first year'post-war maps show that Southern Curil islands were technically part of the administrative area different from Xokkaido district.Japan's enormous appetites are very well known by the countrie of Asia,say Okinawa is curently occupied illegally by Japan.Xokkaido island as well as many other 'japanese' territories originally belonged to now nearly exterminated Ainu peoples. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:21, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Ainu claims[edit]

Whoever added this line: However, the claims of the indigenous Ainu people to the islands have gone largely ignored by the Powers. - Is this verifiable? Can you quote any source on Ainu "claims"? Or on the fact that these (alleged, I presume) claims have gone "largely" (huh?) unnoticed by "the Powers"?:apoivre 15:41, 17 March 2006 (UTC)

Well I removed that line a while ago since the writer was being too vague, and the lack of informativeness gave it little value for keeping it. —Tokek 11:35, 18 December 2006 (UTC)
I'm not sure where that person actually got it from... but I have seen it mentioned many times in Ainu-related documents, noting how ironic it is that Japan and Russia are arguing over lands that "are historically and traditionally part of Ainu Mosir and thus belong rightfully to their stewards, the Ainu people". Ironically, the claims of the Ainu to that land could be said to give more credence to the Japanese claim. --Node 19:34, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Ironically, the claims of the Ainu to that land could be said to give more credence to the Japanese claim. - Ironically enough, as of the 2002 census, nobody in Kamchatka Oblast (which includes the Kurils) identified themselves as Ainu. Shall we take it as a sign that the Ainu claims in question must necessarily come from the Japanese side? --apoivre 01:41, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Ainus are classified as Kamchadals in the Russian census, so it would be impossible for someone to self identify as Ainu in Kamchatka. (talk) 09:00, 21 August 2013 (UTC)

Language problem[edit]

This article seems to suffer from a perpetual influx of bad English contributions. Naturally, people who are interested in this subject tend to be of Russian or Japanese descent and tend to be non-native speakers of English. Maybe we should do extra work to keep track of these contributions and correct bad English when we can make sense of it, and/or we could just block anonymous IPs to discourage people who aren't serious about contributing to the English Wikipedia (e.g. non-native speakers) from editing it.—Tokek 11:35, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

While it's technically correct to say a Japanese national to be of Japanese descent and a Russian national to be of Russian descent, this kind of expression suggests these people have emigrated out of their countries and are settled elsewhere (implicitly the US). That's already a grating assumption. Now, it's one thing for you to complain about putting up with the bad English of non-native speakers, but I also don't appreciate the idea of putting up with a crappy article that's speculative or pilfered from tertiary English translated sources.-- 09:10, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Disputed islands claimed by Japan[edit]

Template:Disputed islands claimed by Japan (renamed Template:Territorial disputes involving Japan) has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. --Endroit 16:17, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Major rewrite?[edit]

I'm tempted to rewrite the article a bit but would like to discuss a few things here first to prevent an edit war. The article as it is now seems pretty biased towards Japan - both in its choice which facts to include and which to omit and in the sequence the facts are introduced. The way it goes now is:

1. Ambiguity over the Treaty of San Francisco and the treaty of Shimoda (so far so good)

2. "Since the Soviet Union era, the occupation has been taught there that "the punishment to Japan" to rationalize the war trophy" (true?) - followed by a statement that "'there was practically no hostile activity between the USSR and Japan before the USSR renounced the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact and declared war on Japan (Operation August Storm) on August 8, 1945." (mostly true; mostly - as the article on the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact states that the USSR didn't violate the pact as it expired by then - see note 1). (Pretty convenient that the 1941 Neutrality pact is chosen here as a starting date and not the Japanese attacks of 1938 (Battle of Lake Khasan) or the clashes in 1939 (Soviet-Japanese Border War (1939)). As it is now, the reader is led to deduce that it's all about evil Russians clinging to old Soviet propaganda while the innocent Japan is... well, innocent)

3. Fast forward to 2005 - the European Parliament officially recommends Russia returns the islands (is it their business? should it rather be a footnote?). Evil Russia protests (of course)

4. As of 2006 (?): Evil Russia currently offers to return 6% of the disputed area if Japan reounces all the other claims. Almost as a sidenote, the 1956 declaration is mentioned

5. 2006: Evil Russia finds a Japanese vessel fishing near the disputed islands (read : in what should be Japan's territorial waters). The vessel "allegedly defied several orders to stop" so evil Russian killed a Japanese fisherman. The first fatality in 50 years. Minimal diplomatic fallout.

6. Ainu claims are introduced and dealt with in a single sentence that doesn't cite any sources. (Who exactly are those Ainus making the claims? What are the claims?)

All in all, nice spin

Now, what do we do with this?

Plan A: make it linear/chronologic - that is, the 1957 declaration should go after point 1 and be elaborated upon, including all the about-faces and the American interference as recalled by a Japanese diplomat (cited in this fascinating article [1] from The Japan Times), with Dulles threatening the US will annex Okinawa if the deal over Iturup and Kunashir is reached and so on?

Plan B: make it symmmetrical, with a series of subsections on Russian claims/Japanese claims, Russian propaganda/Japanese propaganda, official Japanese position/official Russian position, views within Russian/Japanese societies and so on?

Any thoughts? --apoivre 02:22, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Your points are well taken; but let's see what can be done about them in the present structure before you rewrite. Primarily this would mean including the 1930 incidents, which we should.
If we must rewrite, let's have a resume of Russo-Hapanese relations, I suppose since 1855, followed by claims and counter-claims I doubt the recent events are included to frame Russia; WP articles tend to pick up current news as it happens. A subsection on recent events might work. . Septentrionalis PMAnderson 03:03, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm not really sure the 1930s events are all that relevant - I only mentioned them to show how the article would look different depending on which starting point you choose (Japan attacked the USSR several times in the 30s, then the USSR waited till their neutrality pact expired and attacked Japan true to its obligations to the US vs innocent Japan didn't do anything bad till the evel Russkies backstabbed them in '45). Now any of these two POVs might be used to rationalize one or the other claim to the islands - but is Wikipedia a place to rationalize claims. What we should probably do is dwell more on legal basis, i.e., the 1957 declaration. Just my two cents: --apoivre 13:48, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
From the way you write it, it sounds like the 1930s events were very relevant. If so, I am all pro adding those events in the article. USSR renounced the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact and invaded Japan. This is a very crucial event in history that explains how it is now under Russian administration and not Japan's. Japanese people who argue for the return of these islands cite this event as the key reason why they believe Russian occupation is unjustified. Since this article is about the dispute, it seems like an important portion to keep.
  • Re 2 "punishment to Japan" bit: I don't know about the veracity of this claim. It could be true, or it could be false. If found to be true, though, I don't think it should be removed.
  • Re 3: I think people are interested in what the European Parliament has to say.
  • Re 4-5: What's was the problem with these sections? "Disputed" is a fairly standard NPOV word choice, too.
  • Re 6: IIRC I removed this portion before as it made no sense (Who made what claim? When? No explanation or link given). It had the citation needed tag appended to it for awhile, but since it seemed unlikely whoever added the sentence would come back and fix it, I removed it.
Tokek 02:36, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
  • Re1: So did the USSR renounce the pact or did they let it expire as stated elsewhere on Wikipedia (see my comment above)? Or is it all irrelevant and the article should dwell on purely legal matters?
"Re2: If it is true - add a link/quote a source, whatever. (I grew up in the Soviet Union and I don't remember ever hearing that line of reasoning. I believe the party line was "we control these islands because they are ours", not "because we took them from Japan to punish them").
  • Re 3-5: I'm not trying to prove whether these facts are true or not. It's all about presentation. See my original comment above. --apoivre 17:05, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
  • Re 1: I don't see anything in the five year pact that expired at the time USSR denounced it on the third year.
  • Re 2: I agree with your view on this one. —Tokek 12:19, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
  • What's the status on the decision to rewrite the page? I notice that not much has happened since April. I'm interested in seeing the content updated. I generally see the same points listed by apoivre -- at the moment, the historical scope of the article is too narrow to depict the dispute accurately. Additionally, I think a section describing why each country considers the islands to be theirs is also needed to clearly explain the nature of the dispute. Lastly, any other motives for retaining the islands also need to be mentioned, for example, in the case of Russia, maintaining the enclosure of the Okhotsk Sea. Official positions of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of both countries need to be noted. Apoivre, are you still up for the re-write? If not, I can pitch in. Penkov 10:29, 26 September 2007 (UTC)
  • Re 2 (the pact): actually, it is irrelevant, though often misunderstood. The treaty was to be prolonged after 5 years if neither party repudaiated after four. The Soviet Union repudiated (which actually meant that the treaty still stood for another year) but also announced that the treaty had lost its sense, since Japan as an ally of Germany was helping the German war effort. So they accused Japan of having violated the treaty. However, all that does not weigh up against the simple fact that the treaty was a passive neutrality treaty only. It meant that neither of the parties should join an attack by a third power on the other party. So, basically, it did mean that according to the treaty, Japan could not join the German attack on the Soviet Union, but nothing stopped the Soviet Union from joining the war between Japan and the Anglosaxon powers on the American-British side bacause Japan was the aggressor ibn that war (Article two: Should one of the Contracting Parties become the object of hostilities on the part of one or several third powers, the other Contracting Party will observe neutrality throughout the duration of the conflict.)
  • Re 3: this is just one of those European parliament resolutions that does not mean anything. Unfortunately, I cannot find out how the vote went on that one. There are examples of resolutions being adopted by eight votes to one - there is no quorum needed on these things. Of course, these things are sent to the EU commissioner on foreign relations who usually cannot do anything about or with it, because foreign relations is a matter for the states individually. Note that the EU parliament voted a similar resolution on Tibet somewhere in 1993. It is fun, it is silly and it is free of diplomatic consequences. How useful European parlaiment resolutions are, may be best illustrated by the European Parliament resolution on Gladio.
  • Re 6:[2]. The first sentence is clear enough, I suppose? Someone seems to try to use the Ainu to prove that the islands (and not only these islands) are rightfully Japanese, because the rightful owners were driven away by the Russians to Japan. At the same time, I've read a few times that the Ainu language has only recently died out on Sakhalin - a contradiction there. --Paul Pieniezny 14:08, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
I support the rewrite, it's pretty bias -Kain Nihil 00:50, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Occupation date[edit]

Recently, the article was edited in two places to stress September 1945 as the date when the occupation began. The problem is that sources differ - our article on the Kuril Islands says different: "In August 18–31, Soviet forces invaded the North and South Kurils". The suspicion is created that the Soviet Army occupied a major part of, but not all the islands. The Russian article on the Kuril islands even says explicitly "а в августе-сентябре оккупировал Южные Курилы".

It would be interesting to know, where that exact date of 20 September comes from. It is even in contradiction with what the Japanese association of inhabitants of the islands claims itself! [3]. "Thus since August 18 1945, three days after Japan's unconditional surrender, the Four Islands have been under the illegal occupation of the Soviet Union."

This is NOT fumbling over details. It does not take too much googling to find texts on the internet, which claim the Soviet Union occupied these islands "although they never fought Japan during World War II." There was fighting on the islands - according to our source on August Storm, there were ... 80,000 Japanese soldiers on the islands [4]. As for the Japanese surrender, the same American source gives 19 August (one day after the invasion of the Kurils began) as the starting date of cease-fire talks between Japan and the Soviet Union: "Concrete cease-fire negotiations with the Soviets opened on 19 August, only after the Imperial High Command had settled the issue of personal oaths." In fact, in this war, Japanese troops continued to fight until August 30th. And the Japanese Instrument of Surrender is of course from September 2nd. Our article about Surrender of Japan: "Japan's forces were still at war against the Soviets and Chinese, so managing their cease-fire and surrender was difficult. The Soviet Union continued to fight until early September, taking the Kuril Islands." It may have become customary in the West and in Japan to quote August 15th as the end of World War II, but apart from being culturally biased, in an article on a dispute we cannot use such arbitrary boundaries.

I have some other problems with the article, as it does not mention the Soviet Union's repudiation of Portsmouth nor the 1956 talks are mentioned: this actually means that the American intervention stopping Japan from accepting two islands (documented both in pro-Japanese and Russian sources: [[5]] [[6]] is not mentioned either. --Paul Pieniezny (talk) 13:30, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

sourcing and structure[edit]

This article suffers from a general lack of sourcing when various historic facts and dates are cited. I hope that editors who worked on the article in the past, or maybe new ones with the relevant knowledge, will provide such sourcing. In particular, I think that more sources need to be cited in the "Background" section, e.g. to places where one can read texts of various treaties mentioned and possibly some news accounts.

I also found the structure of the "Background" section to be a bit perplexing, with its essentially reverse chronological order. Why start in 1951? Shouldn't that be preceded by a paragraph or two related to earlier history: which country and when owned/controlled which parts of the Kuril islands. In particular, it is unclear from the current text if during any period prior to 1945 Russia/USSR ever had control over the four disputed islands.

Otherwise it is rather hard for a non-expert reading the article for the first time to understand what the story is. Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 11:23, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

signatory to the San Francisco treaty[edit]

I see that Wilderr has changed the sentence regarding the Soviet Union not being a signatory to the San Francisco treaty to read: "However, the Soviet Union choose not to be a signatory to the San Francisco Treaty, inasmuch as the Treaty do not define belonging of Kuril Islands and Sakhalin."

Wilderr, could you please comment on your edit here? As far as I understand, the Soviet Union was not a signatory to the San Francisco Treaty, period. Do you mean to say that the Soviet Union signed some other portion of that Treaty but not the Kuril Island/Sakhalin portion? Or do you mean to say that the Soviet Union did not sign the San Francisco Treaty because of the Kuril Island/Sakhalin provisions of the treaty? Either way, this sentence needs to be clarified, and also cleaned up for English (in its currrent form it is grammatically incorrect). Thanks, Nsk92 (talk) 15:31, 20 March 2008 (UTC)

inasmuch as = because, so my phrase in "light version" equal this:
"USSR not signed the Treaty because the Treaty not defined the rightful owner of the Kuril Islands and Sakhalin"
//Wilderr (talk) 12:36, 24 March 2008 (UTC)
OK, now the meaning is clear. I would certainly be in favor of adding something like: "USSR not signed the Treaty because the Treaty did not not define the rightful owner of the Kuril Islands and Sakhalin", but this only if a reliable source is provided to document this statement. (In fact, if verifiable, such info would also have to be added to the Treaty of San Francisco article itself). Could you give any references to news-articles, books, etc, which say that the Kuril Islands/Sakhalin issue was the reason why the Soviet Union did not sign the Treaty of San Francisco? Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 13:11, 24 March 2008 (UTC)

OK, I did some digging and looked up the archival editions of NYT from October 1951, when the San Francisco peace conference was taking place. There is quite a bit of coverage of the USSR's opposition to the treaty, before and after it was signed, but Kuril Islands and Sakhalin are barely mentioned. There was a lengthy official statement by Andrei Gromyko (who was the head of the Soviet delegation at the conference), made on Sept 8, 1951, detailing the Soviet Union's objections to the treaty. (The statement was published by the NYT on October 9, 1951, see the NYT electronic archive [7]; unfortunately, the access is not free and one has to pay $3.50 to access the NYT article electronically). Gromyko's statement is very lengthy (3483 words, according to the NYT count), and only a small portion of it deals with the Sakhalin/Kuril Islands issue. Most objections, particularly the main objections listed first in the statement, have to do with the USSR's assertions that the treaty does not prevent the rise of the Japanese militarism and contains no guarantees that it will not happen; that the Communist China was not invited to the confrence; that the Treaty is in effect a separate peace treaty not involving all main the powers that were at war with Japan; that the provisions of the previous international agreements such as the Pottsdam declaration are not followed; that the treaty sets up Japan as an American military base and draws Japan into an American-Japanese military coalition directed against the Soviet Union; that the Soviet Union was not properly consulted when the text of the treaty was being prepared; that other Asian countries, apart from China, that suffered in the war with Japan, such as India and Burma, were not participants in the peace conference; that the Treaty violates the rights of China to Taiwan; that several Japanese islands are ceded by the treaty to the United States; and other objections.

There statement does mention the Sakhalin/Kuril issue: "The Soviet delegation has already drawn the attention of the conference to the inadmissibility of the situation under which the draft peace treaty with Japan fails to state that Japan should recognize the sovereignty of the Soviet Union over the southern part of Sakhalin and the Kurile Islands. The draft is in flagrant contradiction with the obligations assumed by the United States and great Britain with regard to these territories under the Yalta Agreement".

Given how small a portion of the entire statement this passage is, and given that it occurs at the very end of a long list of reasons justifying the Soviet opposition to the treaty, it is not possible (at least not based on the text of Gromyko's statement) to say that the Sakhalin/Kuril issue was "the reason" or "the main reason" why the Soviet Union did not sign the treaty or that the soviet Union did not sign the treaty "because of" this issue.

It is justified, based on Gromyko's statement, to say that the Sakhalin/Kuril issue "was among the many reasons" why the Soviet Union did not sign the treaty. Of course, it is possible that something else was going on behind the scenes and that the Sakhalin/Kuril was a more important part of the Soviet opposition to the treaty than Gromyko's statement indicates. But one would have to find some historical evidence for these, perhaps discussed in books and articles by various historians, etc.

Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 16:00, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

Thanx for big job! I havn't practice in english, so writing for me its sloooow work.
Yes, was few prominent reasons and some petty but not "the many", because the part of a small reasons was arised from a big reasons. Most importants is Islands ownership, China's absence, Okinawa's naval base. But here is article about Islands and we need not go into details. I think it possible to say here just this: "One of the USSR's refusals to append signature - the Treaty did not define the rightful owner of the Kuril Islands and Sakhalin". And put the reference what other reasons enumerated in "the Treaty 1951" and "the Treaty 1956" articles. Do you agree with this formula?
I have some sources about this subject (Russian-Japanese relationship), but... all of them on Russian :))) Nevertheless I know all points of view and would like to see this article without biassed one-sided positions. Just and only facts. // Wilderr (talk) 23:34, 27 March 2008 (UTC)
Could you please give some links to the Russian sources you mentioned? I am from Russia myself, so it would not be a problem for me to read them, even we cannot cite them directly in the article. Regarding your suggestion, I'd like to do a bit more research and to get more information before adding a sentence of the type you propose to the article. There is some mystery and an apparent contradiction here that I would like to resolve or at least to understand better. On on hand, Gromyko's statement says that one of the reasons USSR opposed the draft version of the treaty was that that draft version did not include explicit recognition by Japan " of the sovereignty of the Soviet Union over the southern part of Sakhalin and the Kurile Islands". On the other hand, when I look at the text of the treaty as it was actually signed, Article 2(c) says[8]: "Japan renounces all right, title and claim to the Kurile Islands, and to that portion of Sakhalin and the islands adjacent to it over which Japan acquired sovereignty as a consequence of the Treaty of Portsmouth of 5 September 1905".
So, unless I am missing something, it appears that the final text of the treaty did address the concern about the status of Kurils/Sakhalin raised in Gromyko's statement exactly in the way the USSR wanted. It sounds to me like the preliminary draft version of the treaty that Gromyko was talking about was changed to accomodate some of the Soviet concerns, the Kuril/Sakhalin issue in particular. I am not sure if that is exactly what happened but that is what it looks like. If that is the case, it would not be correct to say that the Kuril/Sakhalin issue was among the reasons why the USSR did not sign the treaty (since the final text of the treaty does appear to address this issue exactly in the way the USSR wanted).
But, as I said, I may be missing something and I would like to find out more and to understand better what exactly happened. I do think that the article Treaty of San Francisco needs to include a section discussing the Soviet opposition to the treaty. Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 00:16, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
I did a bit more digging and it seems that I was incorrect. The USSR's objection in relation to the Kuril/Sakhalin issues seems to have been regarding the specific language used in the San Francisco Treaty. While article 2(c) of the treaty does say that "Japan renounces all right, title and claim to the Kurile Islands, and to that portion of Sakhalin and the islands adjacent to it over which Japan acquired sovereignty as a consequence of the Treaty of Portsmouth of 5 September 1905", the treaty does not explicitly say that Japan renounces these rights in favor of the Soviet Union and that Japan recognizes the sovereignty of the Soviet Union over these islands. This looks like a language quabble to me. (In whose else's favor would Japan be renouncing its claim over these territories?). Nevertheless, it appears that it was the absence of an explicit mention of the Soviet sovereignty over the islands in the text of the San Francisco treaty that the Soviet Union was objecting to. This interpretation is supported by anothe New York Times article, from its September 4, 1951 issue, " Text of Dulles Reply to the Soviet Charges Against Japanese Peace Treaty; THE PRESIDENT ARRIVING TO OPEN PEACE CONFERENCE"[9]. The article contains point-by-point replies by Dulles to the Soviet objections to the draft treaty. The article is quite long (2042 words), but it does have several paragraphs dealing with the Kuril/Sakhalin issue. Here is an exact quote:
"Charge: [...] Likewise, the Treaty States that Southern Sakhalin and the Kurile Islands are to be detached from Japan but does not state, as previously promised by the United States, that these territories should be handed over to the Soviet Union.
Reply: [...] As regards South Sakhalin and the Kurile Islands, the treaty carries out the provisions of the Potsdam surrender terms, the only agreement by which Japan and the Allied powers as a whole are bound. So long as other governments have rights under the Yalta Agreement which the Soviet Union has not fulfilled, there is at least question as to whether the Soviet Union can, "with clean hands", demand the fulfillment of the parts of that agreement it likes".
This makes the nature of the USSR's objection in relation to the Kuril/Sakhalin provisions of the treaty more clear. I believe that some mention of this should be included in the article, but I would have to think about precise wording to be used.
The NYT article elucidates another interesting point. Apparently there was a slight difference in language used in the Potsdam agreement and in the Yalta agreement regarding Sakhalin/Kurils. Apparently the Yalta text explicitly said that the territories were to be handed over to the Soviet Union, while the Potsdam text used more implicit language and only said that Japan will renounce all rights to these territories. It appears that the U.S. decided to use the less explicit language of the Potsdam text in the San Francisco treaty and that is what the Soviet Union was objecting to. Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 01:52, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
  • 1. "In whose else's favor would Japan be renouncing its claim over these territories?"
After WW2 USA asked USSR to cede one of Kuril Islands at the middle of range to USA's property. It was almost ultimatum. But Stalin override the claim and USA do not recall the claim. I think it was around 1948 - I don't remember exactly.
  • 2. "...the Yalta Agreement which the Soviet Union has not fulfilled"
What does it mean? Exactly. Which part of the Yalta Agreement was not fulfilled?
  • 3. "In accordance with Declaration the state of war was ceased and was re-established diplomatics and consulars relations."
I insist onto this formula because its diplomatic language.
PS please, don't write so much. this place is not a forum. if you need you can use my page // Wilderr (talk) 03:59, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

Regarding "...the Yalta Agreement which the Soviet Union has not fulfilled", this was a direct quote from Dulles' statement. I don't know exactly what he meant.

Regarding your proposed formulation "In accordance with Declaration the state of war was ceased and was re-established diplomatics and consulars relations.", unfortunately, the second part of it is really bad English and is grammatically incorrect.

"In accordance with the Declaration the state of war between the Soviet Union and Japan was ceased and normal diplomatic and consulars relations were re-established" would at least be correct English, but not quite sufficient since it needs to be clear that we are talking about ending the state of war that existed since World War II.

Regarding my writing too much, you may have a point, but this is a complicated historical matter and I am not writing to express my views but rather to try to ascertain the facts. After reading [10], I see that the matter was much more complicated than I thought. I think that the entire article Kuril Islands dispute needs a fairly comprehensive rewrite, to include more detailed history of the dispute, including more detailed info about Yalta and Potsdam agreements. Nsk92 (talk) 08:46, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

Major rewrite[edit]

I just did a fairly major rewrite of the article.

I substantially extended the historical background section, divided it into several subsections arranged the material largely in chronological order.

I also added material regarding the dispute as to whether or not the Northern Territories are a part of the Kuril Islands, since this is a crucial part of the Kuril Island dispute that was not reflected in the prior version of the article. I think that more sources regarding this issue should be added, especially since there is also a dispute about when exactly Japan first put forward the claim that Etorofu and Kunashiri islands are not a part of the Kurils and are thus not covered by the Treaty of San Francisco.

Regards, Nsk92 (talk) 02:18, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Reorganization and simplification[edit]

I propose merging the History and Modern Dispute sections into one and putting titles at each major portion of it as necessary. I also propose adding two new sections Japan's view and Russia's view to simply define the main points of dispute and to clarify both countries' positions. Yaki-gaijin (talk) 11:50, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

I don't particularly like the idea of merging the history/background section with the Modern Dispute section. The latter is already long enough and complicated enough as it is and the division into pre- and post-WWII parts of the dispute seems logical to me. On the other hand, I do like the suggestion about adding a section summarizing the main points of the dispute and current positions of the two countries. That would indeed be helpful for the readers. Nsk92 (talk) 12:00, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

It's still really rough, and I couldn't decide at what point to put the sections in the article, but I made a start to the "Japan's view" and the "Russia's view" sections. Yaki-gaijin (talk) 05:59, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Japan's view and Russia's view sections[edit]

In general, having such sections is certainly a good idea, but I do think that they need to be more directly sourced to make sure that the positions stated there actually reflect reasonably current positions (say of the last 10 years or so) of the two respective governments. The arguments presented by both countries over the 60+ years after 1945 changed somewhat and their positions changed somewhat as well. So reasonably up-to-date references for these sections are desirable. Nsk92 (talk) 11:52, 26 July 2008 (UTC)

Recent Developments[edit]

In the section with the same heading in the article, it seems to be implied that the liquefied natural gas plant Taro Aso visited on 18 February 2009 is on Sakhalin. If this is so, it needs to be clarified in the article. Q43 (talk) 15:46, 27 February 2009 (UTC)


Usually it's called "Kuril Islands dispute" in the media. I haven't seen "Southern Kuril Islands dispute" being used anywhere. I think we should use the former name. Offliner (talk) 15:14, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

The current title is somewhat misleading, since the dispute concerns only the southern islands, not the whole chain. A book search shows
Wikipedia's naming convention for events states names should be composed of where and what. --Martintg (talk) 21:21, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Kuril Islands dispute is the name used in media. [11][12] Offliner (talk) 21:33, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

"Norther Territories dispute" 4480 hits Let's check other searches:

On Google Books

On Google Scholar

There seems to be a solid case to rename this article to Northern Territories dispute. I thought Southern Kurils dispute was a good compromise but I was wrong. --Martintg (talk) 22:52, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

"Northern Territories dispute" is biased, as "Northern Territories" is the name only Japan uses for the Islands. Wikipedia is not here to represent Japanese POV. Please use WP:RM instead of moving the article unilaterally. Offliner (talk) 23:03, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Biased according to who? The majority of books and scholarly papers use the term "Northern Territories dispute". --Martintg (talk) 23:05, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree with MartinG. If "Northern Territories Dispute" is the most used phrase to refer to this dispute, then we can use that. Yaki-gaijin (talk) 01:35, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

Requested move 2009[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was returned to previous name

Northern Territories disputeKuril Islands dispute — Disruptive editor User:Martintg unilaterally moved the page from "Kuril Islands dispute" to "Northern Territories dispute" without discussion. I think it should be moved back to the original name, for 2 reasons: 1) Kuril Islands dispute is the name widely used in world news media. Google gives 3040 hits for "kuril islands dispute" and 2130 hits for "northern territories dispute". This and this are examples of "Kuril Islands dispute" being used in major media sources. 2) The name Northern Territories dispute is biased, because "Northern Territories" is the name only Japan uses for the islands. The rest of the world doesn't use that name. No one in Russia, for example, would call this "Northern Territories dispute." When you hear the name "North Territories dispute", how many of you will know that it involves the Kuril Islands? Offliner (talk) 23:20, 12 July 2009 (UTC)


  • Support there are several different Northern territories disputes across the globe. (talk) 08:04, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
It's moot now as it has been moved back. Your claim that there are several different Northern territories disputes across the globe is not supported by various Google searches that return hits related to the Russo-Japanese dispute:
--Martintg (talk) 12:13, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
    • What are you, an idiot? All your searches include Russia and Japan. You didn't even bother to look for anything else. (talk) 05:43, 14 July 2009 (UTC)


  • I originally thought Southern Kurils dispute was a better title since the dispute only concerns the southern islands, not the whole chain. Searches reveal this name is reasonably common: Google Web 2670 hits and Google News 346 hits
However subsequent searches reveal "Northern Territories dispute" is more common with 4480 hits and this is confirmed with:
Google Books
On Google Scholar
There seems to be a solid case to rename this article to Northern Territories dispute. However Southern Kurils dispute is a good compromise, particularly when Wikipedia:Naming conventions (events) suggests that when there is no standout common name, the approach to adopt is to base a name on where (Southern Kurils), when (optional) and what (dispute), hence "Southern Kurils dispute" --Martintg (talk) 23:29, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

No one in Russia, for example, would call this "Northern Territories dispute". – Wrong. I seem to remember that in the early 1990s, when the issue was discussed in the Russian press more widely than now, it was often called Northern Territories dispute. Maybe the name was confusing, but it was used nevertheless. Still, who cares? Wikibickering for the sake of wikibickering? Colchicum (talk) 23:40, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

"Russian claims to these islands are not recognised"[edit]

The lead says: "Russian claims to these islands are not recognised since the Soviet Union was not a signatory to the San Francisco Peace Treaty.[2]"

This doesn't seem to be what the given source says. Could you please provide a direct quote of the point you are referring to? Offliner (talk) 02:35, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

See page 496: "An agreement between the United States and Great Britain specified that territorial rights would not be granted to nations that did not sign the San Francisco Peace Treaty. Therefore, the Kurils were not formally recognized as Soviet territory". Therefore I've changed the passage to "Soviet claims to these islands were not recognised since the Soviet Union was not a signatory to the San Francisco Peace Treaty.[2]". --Martintg (talk) 03:06, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
What is the context? Who is saying this? Could you provide a longer quote? Offliner (talk) 03:07, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
The context is the San Francisco Peace Treaty, the section is pretty long and I can't cut and paste it because it is an image. The section states that the tentative terms of the peace treaty were outlined before the conference where Washington acknowledged neither Soviet nor Japanese claims, but Washington officially recognises that Habomai and Shikotan islands were not part of the Kuril chain. John Foster Dulles suggested that recognition of Soviet claims over the islands would be conditional on the Soviet participating in the peace conference, however he Soviet Union withdrew from the conference and refuse to sign the treaty, Britain and the USA declare that those countries that don't sign the treaty will not have any territorial right granted over the islands. Do you know why the Soviet Union refused to sign the treaty? --Martintg (talk) 03:31, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Because the "Cold War" was in full flight by this time, and the USA/NATO was not signing treaties with USSR/Warsaw Pact countries.HammerFilmFan (talk)HammerFilmFan —Preceding undated comment added 02:01, 3 November 2010 (UTC).

Interesting, so the US and UK can now represent the whole world now? thats nonsense, I see the US is a powerful country but not powerful enough to the degree that every single country on earth need the US to recognize their "territory". thanks. on this particular issue, I think there are enough country and population in the world recognize the rights of russians, no further discussions are needed, if the Japanese ever want the islands back, then they can start another war of invasion, good luck to them! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:10, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Achived talk[edit]

I've moved some of the old content to the archive Talk:Northern_Territories_dispute/Archive_1. These discussions are 4 years old and are really obsolete now. --Martintg (talk) 05:04, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

The arguments are still quite valid. Note that it isn't you who decides what is obsolete and what not, and reverting someone who restores relevant content is quite disruptive. Offliner (talk) 05:23, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
The old arguments can be seen at Talk:Northern_Territories_dispute/Archive_1. --Martintg (talk) 05:35, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

"Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized"[edit]

This line was inserted into the lead "Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized following agreements at the end of the second world war". Please provide a secondary source (not a Russian media source) that makes this claim. The books I have read claim that formal recognition was never given. You claim it was given then withdrawn. --Martintg (talk) 05:13, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

Russia Today is a reliable source [13]. The islands were indeed formally given to Russia in the Yalta agreement, but some countries later disputed the argeement. Offliner (talk) 05:21, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
No, that is a media outlet, I want a published book that discusses this, not some simplistic media report. There are plenty of books written on the topic. Scholarly sources are preferred over news stories. Media outlets tend to misrepresent facts, leaving out crucial details and making statements out of context. See Wikipedia:RS#News_organizations. You would object if someone inserted something in the lead as fact using a Japanese media source, yet you insert something in the lead from a Russian media source. --Martintg (talk) 05:27, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Regardless of what you want, this media outlet (i.e. "news sources") is considered reliable, so it's perfectly acceptable to use it in the article. If you want academic sources used as well, feel free to find and use them. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 02:22, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay, so you are saying that item "Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized following agreements at the end of the second world war" published by this Russian media outlet should be can be stated as unattributed fact within the lead, because it is considered reliable, not withstanding that there is no evidence that the Soviet Union was ever granted de jure recognition of sovereignty over these territories. If that is the case you have no objection to inserting something like "Kuril Islands are Japanese territory illegitimately occupied by the Soviet Union" as unattributed fact with in the lead, as long as is was published in a reliable source, right? --Martintg (talk) 06:20, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
If a Russian media outlet is publishing the claim, then yes, you can include it here and attribute the claim to the article by the Russian media outlet. Nowhere in anything I wrote did I state that you (or anyone else, for that matter) were welcome to include unsupported claims. If a media outlet is reporting a claim, you attribute it to that media outlet; that's what the various {{cite}} templates are for, after all. Wikipedia reports what has already been reported, and if a Russian media outlet is reporting something, and the outlet is considered reliable, then it can be used to source claims in an article here. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 06:26, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay, so how do you reconcile the claim by a single Russian media outlet that makes an uncited claim that the "Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized" with multiple scholarly sources such as Bruce A. Elleman, Michael R. Nichols and Matthew J. Ouimet's paper A Historical Reevaluation of America's Role in the Kuril Islands Dispute, Pacific Affairs, Vol. 71, No. 4 (Winter, 1998-1999), pp. 489-504, that claims, with supporting citations, that no such recognition was ever granted? --Martintg (talk) 06:36, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
You report both claims. The media outlet is the source for the claim (very few news articles will list their sources). It's not our job to reconcile the claims, but to report both (or all) of them, and cite the sources showing where those claims were reported. It's really quite simple. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 17:28, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Could you check out the updated lead, --Martintg (talk) 21:27, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Looks good. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 21:39, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Moving page[edit]

Please do not move the page again without a consensus to do so. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 08:14, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

Yep, no worries. I was attempting to be bold, but obviously the initial move has been opposed and now consensus must be formed. I actually only realised after my move that a similar move was discussed some 4 years ago. Oddly enough there were no Google searches done then, "Northern Territories dispute" actually gets more hits across web, book and scholar searches than "Kuril Islands dispute". Shrug. --Martintg (talk) 12:01, 13 July 2009 (UTC)

US view in lead[edit]

Regarding this: why do we include US' view, that the Islands do not belong to Russia in the lead, but not the US' view that they don't belong to Japan? This is unbalanced, and in violation of WP:NPOV. Why is the second view determined as "undue weight" and "duplication", but the first not? Offliner (talk) 13:47, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

It's not a violation of NPOV, though I do agree it really shouldn't be in the lead. It should be elsewhere, though, perhaps in a section about views expressed by other countries, or official views of the dispute. It's common for international disputees to seek the opinions of other countries, and that has happened here. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:09, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
It was your suggestion to report both claims in the lead in Talk:Kuril_Islands_dispute#.22Soviet_Union.27s_sovereignty_over_the_islands_was_recognized.22. The lead is suppose to be a summary of the article, and the US position is very significant to the dispute, being a party to the original Postdam and Yalta agreements as well as the San Francisco Peace treaty mentioned in the lead, and a player in the 1956 negotiations between Russia and Japan. It also balances the claim in the lead that "Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognised" when clearly that is not the case. Otherwise we need to remove "News agency RIA Novosti claims the San Francisco Peace Treaty between the Allied Powers and Japan from 1951 states that Japan must give up all claims to the Kuril islands, while Russia Today claims Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized following agreements at the end of the second world war." from the lead as it is misleading without reference to the US (and Japan's) view. --Martintg (talk) 00:30, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
Did you guys read my question properly? I asked: "why do we include US' view, that the Islands do not belong to Russia in the lead, but not the US' view that they don't belong to Japan?" You have not provided an argument why the US view about Japan's claim should not be there. Now, Martintg has again removed it (this time from the whole article), in which can only be described as a blatant violation of WP:NPOV, without providing no argumentation whatsoever. Offliner (talk) 08:14, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
I completely agree. What is the reason for not mentioning both in the lead, if one is to be mentioned? PasswordUsername (talk) 08:32, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
I've removed the US view now on 3 occasions. This dispute is between Russia and Japan, not Russia, Japan, US and EU. Martintg insists on inserting this into the lead, and if he continues, it should be reported, as it is obviously a contentious issue, and if continued one can make the argument to insert the views of those countries who back Russia in the dispute into the lead, and sure, let's make this article into another f'ing battleground, not!! --Russavia Dialogue 09:11, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
The issue was having the view of the USA in the lead, which you removed twice, but now you removed it from the body too. The view of the USA is significant and should remain since the USA was a participant of the Yalta and Potsdam conferences as well as the San Francisco Peace Treaty, and it is these conferences/treaty upon which the Soviet Union based it's claim upon. Because of this and involvement of the USA as the principal occupying power in Japan, it simply cannot be compared to views of other random countries that may back either Japan or Russia. But you are indeed right in that much of the material is duplicated in the "Modern dispute" section and so I moved some of the material into this section. --Martintg (talk) 10:59, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

I don't understand, if the Soviet union didn't sign the treaty of San Francisco, then it means the Soviet Union do not agree with the term of the treaty and therefore the treaty itself carries no legal obligation to the Soviet. this is the basic knowledge of law, the contract became validated only if all the party involved agreed the term and thus sighed it! so in my opinion this treaty should not be included in this article as it is a one-sided treaty and the Yalta agreement, precedent to the treaty and had terms agreed by both side should be the ultimate source. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:30, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Exclusively Russian POV in the lead[edit]

Unfortunately Offliner, who is an Russian national, has reverted my last change and thus unbalanced the lead which now exclusively has Russian POV [14], while at the same time he opposes the POV of the USA or Japan to balance it. He also removed sourced text from the section on the USA's view about the US Senate ratification law that explicitly mentions the non recognition of Russian claims and reinserted text duplicated from the section regarding the 1956 negotiations. I explained my reasons for my last change in the section above, but apparently he didn't hear it. As a consequence I have placed a POV tag on the article. --Martintg (talk) 10:07, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

I suggest you start focusing on content and stop making personal attacks. I would like to ask you to take back your words. PasswordUsername (talk) 08:36, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree that Japan's view should be there, but I object to including the US view. The dispute is between Russian and Japan - all other views are only marginally relevant (and I'm not sure why this article thinks US & Britain view is important but every other country's view is not). If everyone insist that the US view must be there, then it should be worded as something like "According to the United States, the San Francisco Peace Treaty "did not determine the sovereignty of the territories renounced by Japan"" because that is what they are saying, and we should keep it short. But it would be best not to include the world police view in the lead at all. Also Martintg, please remember WP:OUTING. Offliner (talk) 09:08, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
WP:OUTING? Come now, it is common knowledge in the more usual haunts that you are a Russian national who tries to bring in more Russian POV, even your compatriot User:HistoricWarrior007 acknowledges this on Talk:2008 South Ossetia war: "There is very little Russian perspective here. Certainly FeelSunny, Ingy and Offliner try, but three people, all of whom are much more liberal then most Russians, cannot bring in the Russian perspective. I started editing this article because I wanted to help out. Now two of Offliner's close allies, User:Russavia (who made two blind reverts to the article without any talkpage comment [15],[16]) and User:PasswordUsername (having never edited this article before) have arrived here. I think there is a danger that proper development of this article may be impeded by multiple editors working in tandem.
Now back to the content. You think it is important to mention the San Francisco Peace Treaty in the lead, yet object to mention of the USA and Britain who were signatories to the treaty (and which the Soviet Union was not a signatory). You want to mention that the Soviet Union's sovereignty over the islands was recognized, but object to placing text the balances that claim with mention that the other participants of Yalta and signatories of the San Francisco Peace Treaty have not given any such recognition. The lead is still highly POV, and I still believe that this version of the lead is the most neutral. --Martintg (talk) 12:38, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Martintg, I have not edited this article. You should take back your words on the basis of WP:CIV. PasswordUsername (talk) 15:03, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

Gregory Clark[edit]

The link to "Gregory Clark" in the article is NOT to the "Gregory Clark" who wrote the articles cited.

The "Gregory Clark" who wrote the articles cited in the text is a semi-retired former Australian diplomat and journalist living in Japan. He is NOT an historian. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:12, 1 November 2010 (UTC)

Corrected. Oda Mari (talk) 05:53, 3 November 2010 (UTC)

Public attitudes[edit]

How come that there are poll data for Russia and no such data for Japan but something about activist group instead? I think somebody with understanding of Japaneese should extract this data from somewhere here RlyechDweller (talk) 08:14, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

South Korean view[edit]

Phoenix7777 and Oda Mari have been objecting to the addition of sourced South Korean views on this dispute, with various rationales. Addressing the one with the most merit, can one of these users point out which statements in the text are allegedly not supported by the sources, because it's not apparent to me. Quigley (talk) 10:47, 28 July 2011 (UTC)

Quigley, thank you for bringing this to this talk page. I think you did not read the sources provided by Hangyun. Please provide relevant parts supporting the following claims:
"In South Korea, Korean people generally support Russia on Kuril Islands dispute, as a response against Japan on Japanese claim of sovereignty over Liancourt Rocks, the island that is currently administered by South Korea. [50][51] On May 2011, 3 members of the National Assembly of South Korea visited Kuril Islands, by obtaining Russian visa from the embassy thus entering Russian port, not through Japanese port.[52][53] Such action by the members of the National Assembly gained support from both South Korean and Russian government. [54] The Japanese government disapproved of the move, fearing a possible Russian support on South Korea on Liancourt Rocks dispute"
  • "In South Korea, Korean people generally support Russia on Kuril Islands dispute, as a response against Japan on Japanese claim of sovereignty over Liancourt Rocks"
  • "thus entering Russian port, not through Japanese port"
  • "Such action by the members of the National Assembly gained support from both South Korean and Russian government"
  • "fearing a possible Russian support on South Korea on Liancourt Rocks dispute"
―― Phoenix7777 (talk) 11:04, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
I couldn't find direct support for the disputed statements in the English-language sources; however, there are still four Korean-language sources[17][18][19][20] which may provide support for them. I have asked Hangyun to provide translations of the supporting passages here. Quigley (talk) 11:19, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
Did you revert the edit without knowing the content of the sources? You should explain by yourself. ―― Phoenix7777 (talk) 11:29, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
My only edit on this page was a response to the "WP:NOTNEWS" rationale for deletion, not your "WP:OR" rationale. I already explained my objection to the former, and I am willing to assume good faith of Hangyun on the latter. Quigley (talk) 11:35, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
(ec*2)Earlier today I was searching for a ko-N editor; I asked User:Historiographer to take a look at the sources. However, I only asked xem to verify that the sources meet WP:RS (the especially looked like a non-news source to me). If the Korean sources verify the claims, that is sufficient for it to stay in the article, I think, although some of it is questionable (I modified some of the more extreme phrasing after first seeing it). Hopefully someone can tell us what the Korean sources say.
@Phoenix: aren't we usually supposed to AGF that the person included information that matched the sources? That's at least why I left the information in pending further review. I do note that Hangyun is at 3RR, and thus needs to stop reverting, though. I'll go mention it to xem. Qwyrxian (talk) 11:41, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
Quigley, please be honest. Your edit above refers to my edit indicating my user name. If you cannot respond to my question, please self-revert your edit. ―― Phoenix7777 (talk) 11:47, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
Are you implying that I am dishonest? Cease the personal attacks. There's no pressing need to remove this information while the sources and Hangyun's interpretation of them (as opposed to yours) are momentarily clarified. Quigley (talk) 11:54, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
You clearly named my user name above however you explained you only reverted the edit by Oda Mari objecting WP:NOTNEWS. Is this really a honest explanation? ―― Phoenix7777 (talk) 12:37, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
I'm not going to be baited into saying something uncivil, sorry. Quigley (talk) 12:46, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
Qwyrxian, I read the sources provided by Hangyun and reverted as WP:OR. There are no such claims in the sources as explained above. ―― Phoenix7777 (talk) 11:51, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
Apologies, Phoenx7777, I didn't now that you can read Korean. If so, and you say the info isn't in the articles, then the section should come out. Is there anything useful in the articles, though, that would be of worth here? If Hangyun should claim that the articles say something different...we'll have to get some sort of neutral third party translator, I guess...hopefully it won't come to that. Qwyrxian (talk) 12:10, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
The visit took place in May. But that has not changed anything the situation of the dispute so far. That was why I thought it was not significant enough for inclusion and WP is not a news story. I thought not every news report related the islands should be included in the article. Was I wrong? Maybe I should have said WP:UNDUE. Basically South Korea has nothing to do with this dispute. I think what they did was an insinuation, a harassing act, or a stunt. Korean sources say they visited and stayed Kunashiri only 50 minutes a hour and 50 minutes, they did not meet any Russian official, and it was a private visit. Japanese protest was just an act of diplomacy MOFA had to do. As Phoenix7777 pointed out, there are factual errors in the addition. I'd like to know why the information should be needed in the article. It's a trivia to me. Oda Mari (talk) 14:59, 28 July 2011 (UTC)
If we can verify it, I can live with a single sentence (maybe two) verifying Korea's stance on the overall issue or some major Korean "uproar". Maybe. The visit itself is, you are probably correct, trivial. And if it was a private visit, then even more so. But if the Korean government has taken an explicit stance, then that might be worth reporting. It sounds more and more, though, that this doesn't belong. Qwyrxian (talk) 02:13, 29 July 2011 (UTC)
This says "The South Korean government has denied any involvement with the visit" and "The position of the lawmakers does not represent that of the government technically and it will be difficult for Japan to lodge a protest directly with the South Korean government, he added". This one says "Park reportedly replied, 'The lawmakers visited the Kuril Islands in a private capacity and this has nothing to do with the Korean government.'” See this too. The original page is here. Oda Mari (talk) 05:47, 29 July 2011 (UTC)

Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact end date[edit]

This text states "The Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact was signed in Moscow on April 13, 1941,and the treaty did remain in force till April 1946." However the article on this pact shows the USSR denounced the pact in April 1945. Is there a reason why the article states the pact was in force upto 1946? If not, it should be changed to April 1945. (Kbentbeu (talk) 10:58, 10 May 2013 (UTC))

The text is correct as there was no provision in the treaty for unilateral abrogation, thus the USSR's abrogation of the treaty was illegal. This is Japan's position and the treaty was still in force from their point of view when the USSR invaded illegally in August 1945. ludahai 魯大海 (talk) 09:51, 4 September 2013 (UTC)

"russians poorly organised", or "russians suffered a military disaster"[edit]

The casualties of the Russo-Japanese war: 34,000 Russians versus 58,000 Japanese is counter proof to the above claims. We can not use such language to describe the Russian defeat. Such language would imply that Russian forces performed poorly, which is not true. Also keep in mind this is a surprise attack and gives a natural advantage to Japanese. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:02, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

While the initial attack was a surprise attack, the Russian response did not fair well. The Battle of Tsushima, for example, was incredibly lopsided in favor of the Japanese, which cannot be blamed on "surprise." It was a Russian response with a fleet moved halfway around the globe, only to get there and get largely destroyed. Your numbers on casualties are also misleading, as it does not distinguish between deaths from war wounds and deaths from disease. 34,000 - 52,000 Russians died in battle or from war wounds, compared with 11,000 Japanese dying of war wounds. That means between 3-5 times more Russians died of battle related wounds than Japanese, very different than your numbers. Further tens of thousands on both sides died of disease, but that cannot be as easily counted towards a military defeat. --OuroborosCobra (talk) 17:28, 27 October 2013 (UTC)