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South Korea suffers from its alternating approach toward Japan

Minor left-leaning groups, not wartime laborers, whip up anti-Japan sentiment

Japan-South Korea ties have been subjected to South Korea's political flip-flops   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Japan is again falling victim to South Korean politics, most recently in relation to the decades-old wrangling over the wartime "comfort women" issue, which itself reflects a long-running power struggle in the country.

In South Korea, presidents wield so much power they are often likened to an emperor. As a result, the inauguration of a new president can dynamically alter society as a whole -- and foreign policy can be turned on its head.

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