When the Catholics were massacred by Taewon-gun, one of Korea’s prominent leaders, the incident gave France a good excuse to put up aggression against Korea whose forces, however, resisted the French invaders. The latter pulled out in failure in October of 1866.
Japan started its plans to have control over Korea in 1868 and was impliedly encouraged by the Americans and, in 1871, the United States government gave orders for its Asian naval war chests to occupy the island of Kanghwado in an attempt to compel Korea to open its ports. Despite their might, the American soldiers did not succeed in gaining entry and withdrew from Korean territory.
Japan finally got control of Kanghwado with full combat equipment on January 16, 1876. Under intimidation and vitiated consent, the Koreans were coerced to enter into a very one-sided treaty consisting of twelve articles all advantageous to the Japanese while onerous against the islanders. The pact gave what appeared to be a legal basis for Japan to win some more concessions in its favor. Gradually, Japan established further prominence and influence in Korea in 1881 when its Wonsan and Inch’on harbors were opened. As Japanese presence and supremacy became apparently burdensome, the Korean people started to differ in their inclinations. Some were against the corrupt foreign intervention while others were for reforms in the domestic landscape.
Koreans who were advocates of the theories and principles of Confucius despised the entry of foreigners including European capitalists. These idealists considered the intrusions disturbing and destructive. In the process, the Confucian creed followers initiated alliance with other ethics with whom they can work toward restoring Korean preeminence. At this point, there were already deprivations in spiritual, political and financial aspects. As a matter of fact, many local schools with Taewon-gun orientations were closed. The characteristics of this