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Missile system 'hits' TV shows

Updated: 2016-08-05 07:25
(China Daily)

Missile system 'hits' TV shows

A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptor is launched during a successful intercept test, in this undated handout photo provided by the US Department of Defense, Missile Defense Agency. [Photo/Agencies]

After the Republic of Korea announced it had agreed to the United States deploying the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense anti-missile system in its territory, which will break the regional strategic balance, reports show some ROK TV programs have encountered obstacles trying to enter the Chinese market.

Some foreign media outlets, especially those in the ROK, even said the Chinese government intervened in the process.

It is natural for ROK program producers to be so sensitive because China is the biggest overseas market for ROK programs. People in that country should have anticipated such consequences when their government insisted on deploying the THAAD system.

Actually, if the ROK deploys the system as agreed, the Chinese market for ROK TV shows will definitely shrink. Not because of any action by the Chinese government; but because Chinese audiences will boycott ROK programs of their own accord.

ROK cultural products have been popular in China for the past decade, but many people forget the political friendliness between the two countries behind the trade boom. Japanese cultural products used to be popular in China in the 1980s and 1990s, but their popularity declined when bilateral political relations cooled.

That's a lesson that the ROK should learn.

By allowing the US to deploy THAAD in its territory, the ROK is ruining its relationship with China and its entertainment industry is paying the price for that wrong decision.

The root cause of the problem, of course, lies in the remnants of the Cold War that still exists in East Asia. That's more than rivalry between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea on one side and the ROK and the US on the other; it also leads to the strategic tension between China and the US.

It is time for the US and its allies to get rid of their Cold War mindset for the benefit of all.

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