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First, don't listen to all these people complaining about racism; if they say it is, they obviously do not know what real racism is. This is, actually, a good question. The thing is, in some circumstances, they can look the same. However, in some cases, they differ by a significant amount.
Southeastern Asians such as Cambodians, have very dark skin. They almost look like Native Americans. As well as most Thais. Also, when it comes to the lighter shade of skin, it can be a little confusing.
Northern Chinese and southern Chinese are said to vary in subtle ways. I believe northern Chinese people are rather bigger, and generally have an epicanthal fold, as where the southern Chinese do not. Pale Korean skin is some of the most beautiful skin on this earth -- as well as my people's.
However, I will say that my friend and I went into a Chinese restaurant and placed an order. An Asian man walked in and was picking his order up. The Chinese man behind the counter started speaking to him in Chinese, just to have the guy say, "I'm sorry; I'm Japanese."
My friend looks over to the man behind the counter and says, "Hah! I knew it! You can't tell the difference, either!" Everyone laughed.
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- Excellent answer...thanks man