From ancient times, the Korean people regarded the evergreen pine tree as a symbol of the nation as it represents the resourcefulness and strong spirit.
So, the pine tree became dearer to the hearts of people.
During their military occupation of Korea (1905-1945), the Japanese imperialists cut down the pines at random in a bid to exterminate the tree symbolic of the Korean nation and made desperate efforts to obliterate the pine-related culture.
They felled a large number of pines under the cloak of making the raw materials for foodstuffs and pine oil.
They forced the Korean farmers to deliver pine branches, cones, roots, resinous part, etc. After 1942, they produced 3 million tons of pine oil every year by forcibly drafting even women and children to the felling of pines.
They made no scruple of cutting down the pines in historical sites.
There was no exception to the pine in the Royal Palace of the feudal Joson dynasty which was considered to be a holy tree by the Koreans.
The publication of pine-related literary works was banned by the Japanese imperialists.
They pressed the Koreans to plant hundreds of thousands of Japanese cherry trees, while plundering the pine trees in Korea.
Due to their indiscriminate felling of pine trees, the natural landscape of Korea was severely devastated and many pine forests disappeared.
After Korea’s liberation (August 15, 1945), a campaign for planting pine trees and spreading them was conducted proactively as part of afforestation, with the result that pine forests have been created in many parts of the country, recovering the appearance of mountains.