Japanese influence in Taiwan

My name is Daniel. I was an English teacher in Seoul, South Korea, and am now a writer who has
published three books including South Korea: Our Story by Daniel Nardini.
                             There are three things that both Taiwan and South Korea have in common.
Both are democracies. Both have a conflict with one of their neighbors. In the case of South Korea
it is North Korea, and in the case of Taiwan it is Japan. Finally, both actually are neighbors with Japan.
That of course is where the similarities end. While South Korea has a rather antagonistic relationship with
Japan, Taiwan and especially with the Taiwanese people have a particularly close relationship with
Japan and the Japanese people. When I lived in Taiwan, it was common (as it still very much is)
to see Japanese restaurants and Japanese department stores. Taiwanese love to read the latest books
from Japan, and I have seen more Japanese toys in Taiwan than anywhere else in Asia. The Japanese
language is as popular in Taiwan as is English, and the Taiwanese built their high speed rail train after
Japan’s. Interestingly enough, many Japanese admire Taiwan and all things Taiwanese. One Japanese
couple who had lived in Taiwan promoted a Taiwan festival in Miyazaki province, Japan. We have to
remember that Taiwan, like South Korea, was once a colony of Japan with not always a happy history
of being under Japanese rule (you can ask the Taiwan aborigines and the Taiwanese comfort women
about that). indeed, the relationship between Taiwan and Japan is rather complex. However, despite
everything it remains a pretty close one. Yes, they have a territorial dispute with Japan over islands to
the north. Aside from these thing, a very good reason why the relationship is close is because most 
Taiwanese recognize Japan as a fellow democracy. Both being fellow democracies means that they
can have contact both on some official and unofficial government levels as well as people to people
contact.