"Trostfrauen", Wiedergutmachung und Menschenrechte
2018: Remarks by a Japanese Consul
"Trostfrauen", "Comfort Women"
Source: The Asia-Pacific Journal | Japan Focus Volume 16 | Issue 4 | Number 2 | Feb 10, 2018
“The Comfort Women were Prostitutes”:
Repercussions of remarks by the Japanese Consul General in Atlanta
Shirana Masakazu and Ando Kyoko, Tokyo Shimbun, June 29, 2017
Translation and introduction by Kyung Hee Ha
“I want Japan to ask for forgiveness.” (https://apjjf.org/#_edn1) Ching-lin Yuen, testimony at the Women’s International War Crimes Tribunal on Japan’s Military Sexual Slavery, 2000
Yuen was among 64 women from 8 countries who came to Tokyo to testify about their experiences as former “comfort women.” The judges in this citizens’ tribunal found Emperor Hirohito guilty of responsibility for sexually enslaving women and girls in the Asia Pacific, and recognized direct government and military responsibility for the “comfort women” system, one of the largest and cruelest cases of sex trafficking in the 20th century.
Based not only on sympathy and responsibility, but also on trauma and memory passed down from immigrant family members who experienced Japanese colonization and invasion first-hand, members of Asian and Pacific Islander communities in the United States have stood in solidarity with the former comfort women. Years of grassroots activism resulted in the passing of U.S. Congressional Resolution 121 of 2007 calling on the Japanese government to formally apologize to the victims, and in the erection of more than 10 memorials in the United States, in locations including Palisades Park (NJ), Glendale (CA), and more recently, Brookhaven (GA) and San Francisco (CA). These memorials and statues seek to educate the public about these horrific war crimes and honor the suffering and courage of the victims.