Asian history plays big role in air-defense dispute

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013 - 10:10 am

Re "President Obama must finally do his Asia 'pivot'" (Editorials, Nov. 30): China and Japan’s dispute over control of the eight uninhabited islands in the East China Sea is based on history, not oil. The islands were part of China until they were ceded to Japan after the first Sino-Japanese war, along with Taiwan. The reason neither China nor Taiwan said anything before 1971 was probably because the islands had been under U.S. control. It was natural for both Taiwan and China to claim the islands when the United States decided to turn administration control, not sovereignty, to Japan.

-- Guy M. Wong, Sacramento

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