- 2014.03.22 Saturday
Open Letter to The New York Times
But before he gets to Japan’s postwar culture, he also whitewashes the history of the war. He and other nationalists still claim that the Nanjing massacre by Japanese troops in 1937 never happened. His government on Friday said that it would re-examine an apology to Korean women who were forced into sexual servitude by Japanese troops. And he insists that visiting the Yasukuni Shrine, which honors Japan’s war dead including convicted war criminals, merely shows respect for those who sacrificed their lives for their country. Despite clear signals from Washington to refrain from visiting the shrine, he went in December.
The New York Times, by Editorial Board, March 2, 2014
I would like to congratulate The New York Times for nearly completing the destruction of its own journalistic standing and reputation. As a reward for your efforts, The New York Times, I would like to grant a history lesson that may give you a perspective.
Although Mr. Abe succumbed to the pressure from the interventionist Obama administration not to re-examine the Japanese government's conventional position regarding the alleged "Japanese army's criminal enslavement of women (mostly from Korea)" to our dismay, the fact is there that this allegation is a complete fabrication.
Since the 1st "sex slave" named Kim Hak-sun filed a lawsuit in 1993 in Tokyo with false charges (she claimed she had been abducted by Japanese military, whereas she had said in prior testimony in Korea that she had been sold by her parents), so called former sex slaves continued to come out to take advantage of the situation.
Since then, the allegation has been disseminated with fabricated "evidences" by South Korean government, left wing operatives and their cohorts in a lot of different countries, including sadly the United States.
Thanks, however, to the efforts by a lot of individuals and groups, the allegation has been proven to be a total lie. Here, I would like to pick a historic record - a record by the United States Army back in 1944 in Burma where battle was still ongoing. The American troops defeated the Japanese army in Myitkyina in August 1944, and the record was made from the interviews conducted by the American army officers to the Korean women found there after the battle.
This record is uncovered by an American individual, Mr. Tony Marano, who contacted National Archives to get a copy of the original document. The whole document is available on his great website Propaganda Buster.
Some interesting excerpts;
This report is based on the information obtained from the interrogation of twenty Korean "comfort girls" and two Japanese civilians captured around the tenth of August, 1944 in the mopping up operations after the fall of Myitkyin a in Burma.
A "comfort girl" is nothing more than a prostitute or "professional camp follower" attached to the Japanese Army for the benefit of the soldiers.
They lived in near-luxury in Burma in comparison to other places. This was especially true of their second year in Burma. They lived well because their food and material was not heavily rationed and they had plenty of money with which to purchase desired articles. They were able to buy cloth, shoes, cigarettes, and cosmetics to supplement the many gifts given to them by soldiers who had received "comfort bags" from home.
While in Burma they amused themselves by participating in sports events with both officers and men, and attended picnics, entertainments, and social dinners. They had a phonograph and in the towns they were allowed to go shopping.
Soldiers would come to the house, pay the price and get tickets of cardboard about two inches square with the prior on the left side and the name of the house on the other side. Each soldier's identity or rank was then established after which he "took his turn in line". The girls were allowed the prerogative of refusing a customer. This was often done if the person were too drunk.
The "house master" received fifty to sixty per cent of the girls' gross earnings depending on how much of a debt each girl had incurred when she signed her contract. This meant that in an average month a girl would gross about fifteen hundred yen. She turned over seven hundred and fifty to the "master".
The interrogations further show that the health of these girls was good. They were well supplied with all types of contraceptives, and often soldiers would bring their own which had been supplied by the army. They were well trained in looking after both themselves and customers in the matter of hygiene. A regular Japanese Army doctor visited the houses once a week and any girl found diseased was given treatment, secluded, and eventually sent to a hospital.
The average Japanese soldier is embarrassed about being seen in a "comfort house" according to one of the girls who said, "when the place is packed he is apt to be ashamed if he has to wait in line for his turn". However there were numerous instances of proposals of marriage and in certain cases marriages actually took place.
This is a record accessible to all US citizens at National Archive. This is not a record concocted by "right-wing ultra imperialistic nationalist" in Japan.
Those so called "sex slaves" were not slaves at all. They were professionals. They were well paid and treated fairly. The average monthly wage they were receiving, YEN 1,500 was much more than the salary received by General Hideki Tojo (YEN 800).
And yes, our military was involved. The involvement was mostly for the protection of our soldiers and women from the diseases and various harms of being in the battlefield.
Violent coercion by the military? Enslavement by the military? Please tell me... where could you find a slave who can go shopping and picnics with slave masters and get paid?
There were those who were coerced or deceived into it "by the agent" who ran the prostitution business or the impoverished "parents of the women" who wanted to sell them for money. That was absolutely nothing to do with our military.
There were those individual cases where women were mistreated. If mistreatment of any kind is the indictment, we have cases after cases where our citizens are mistreated by the US military personnel in Japan where US military bases are located, which we deal with individually instead of making them a huge national issue.
Before the lawsuit, there was not a single Korean who made an official complaint on this issue.
Until now, not a single official document that implies "forced enslavement" of women by the Japanese military.
Until now, there has not been a single person who saw the abduction of the women by the Japanese military.
If the existence of the "prostitution" was the indictment… I would like to recommend The New York Times to make a research on "Recreation and Amusement Association (RAA)". RAA was created in the post war Japan by Japanese government "for the United States soldiers" in 1945 August for the purpose of "reducing" raping of our women by the US soldiers.
And, don't worry - these women were enlisted voluntarily.
US soldiers at a brothel run by RAA.
Unlike you, The New York Times, we Japanese don't condemn the United States soldiers for using the service provided by our women and the arrangement coordinated by our government at the time.
God bless you and have a nice day. Enjoy the remaining days until the value of your paper goes lower than the recycled toilet paper.