By Seung-young Kim
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Extra resources for American Diplomacy and Strategy toward Korea and Northeast Asia, 1882 - 1950 and After: Perception of Polarity and US Commitment to a Periphery
70 Seung-young Kim 24 AMERICAN DIPLOMACY & STRATEGY TOWARD KOREA & NORTHEAST ASIA Another weakness of Korea had to do with the extremely frequent replacement of cabinet ministers. 71 Later, George Kennan, a journalist and close friend of Theodore Roosevelt, wrote in Outlook in 1905, “What are you going to do with a government which . . 74 Allen reported his frank and pessimistic assessment of the Korean situation to the State Department and his friends in 1902. ”76 He also pointed out the sale of offices as evidence of corruption and reported that the main sources of such corruption traced back to the Emperor himself.
32 After an initial Japanese victory, Britain also inquired whether the United States would join Britain, Russia, Germany, and France in an intervention on behalf of Korean independence. 33 In fact, the US stance during the war was as good as pro-Japan neutrality, though Washington announced strict neutrality throughout the war. In the early stages of the war, Japan could launch an attack on Chinese forces after being assured that the United States would not join a joint intervention by Western powers.
But with the rise of adventurous hardliners in the court, Russia did not carry out the second phase of its withdrawal in April 1903. Instead, it occupied Yongampo, a spot on the Korean bank of the Yalu River, and the entire region along the mouth of the river, in May 1903. The pretext was timber development, based on a concession that a Russian merchant had secured from the Korean government in 1898. But Russia sent forty former Russian soldiers along with Chinese bandits and Korean laborers into Yongampo and quickly fortified the area.