picture of the day

Symbol of sex slaves

25 Comments

A South Korean police officer looks at the statue of a girl representing victims of Japanese sexual slavery in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, on Tuesday.

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

25 Comments
Login to comment

Maybe the Japanese government should consider moving the embassy to another location. Sometimes the best course of action is to just move on.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Maybe the Japanese government should consider moving the embassy to another location. Sometimes the best >course of action is to just move on.

And you don't think the people who put it there in the first place are going to move the statue to the new location too?

Maybe Japan can face up to its past squarely, like Germany did, so it won't get constantly haunted by the ghosts of years gone by?

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Oh, this is just too much.,

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Maybe the Japanese government should consider moving the embassy to another location

The statue no doubt would move to another location, too.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Yes, the statue can be moved but that does not mean that the South Korean government would allow it in front of the relocated embassy. Further, why move the statue unless the purpose is to antagonize the Japanese government? The statue is beautiful and sad at the same time. The statue has become a global symbol of the reality of sexual slavery during warfare. The statue is seen by many around the world as a symbol of courage, and it would be sad if it is used as a medium to divide moving forward.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The statue probably won't be going anywhere following legal battles. The statue is technically under the jurisdiction of the Mayor of Seoul, not the central government, and the mayor is a hardcore left winger. The organization that put the statue already refused to move, and the government's legal case for a relocation lawsuit is weak since it does not harm public interests.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The statue is not moving according to legal experts.

The statue was fully permitted and is under the jurisdiction of the City of Seoul. The Mayor of Seoul has no intention of moving it. The organization that put the statue there vowed to never move it and will fight all attempts in court. A couple of high ranking judges commenting on the possible legal case affirmed there is no legal basis for moving the statue because it does not harm public interests.

The only way it could be moved is if the central government persuades the organization that put it there to move it voluntarily, but that organization already confirmed they were never going to move it.

So the statue will be sitting in front of the Japanese embassy for a long long time.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

this isn't about the statue. If the Japanese government was serious about no longer representing the Imperial past, even as their own Emperor has suggested, they would embrace it instead to show and accept understanding. Not sweeping everything under the rug of history. They can keep paying but buying sincerity isn't going to work.

Invite Korean and Chinese leaders to all the anniversaries, not just Hiroshima/Nagasaki, and they likewise to Japanese leaders. Share in the horror and stupidity of the wars. Mark how they occurred and how "we won't be fooled again".

Their only role is to acknowledge the attrocities and accept that they occurred and not back down ever in accepting it. Every year on an anniversary to celebrate the end of the Imperial era and its horrific history, to embrace peace and acknowledge in its future success and its neighbours.

The Japanese government needs to say that they were victims of the past as well (they'd like that), and at the same time it would dilute all the right wingers in Japan, Korea, and China.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

this isn't about the statue. If the Japanese government was serious about no longer representing the Imperial past, even as their own Emperor has suggested, they would embrace it instead to show and accept understanding. Not sweeping everything under the rug of history.

Great comment here. I agree with sf2k.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

sf2k,

BINGO, sadly the J-govt is not smart enough to comprehend that or the right moral things to do, only shell out some ca$h & try to buy silence & meanwhile visit yasukuni, deny history, pretend to be a victim

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Where's the statue to the Koran middlemen who, in 100% of cases, would have been recruiting these girls, or kidnapping, or buying from their impoverished parents? Korea's ability to revise its own history so that they are the the only victims ever is simply amazing. They literally arrest you if you don't agree with their version of events, or wreck your career, as happened with the Dokdo-or-Takeshima blogger.

Shame on Japan for doing the bad things they did, but shame on Korea for not having the strength of character to face your own negative history as well.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@Peter Payne

I'm sure there's a lot of side issues but it cannot take away from the main ones. When one of the trio can deny it's easy for another to as well. If China Korea and Japan can forge a friendship not just on economic terms but on recognition and social responsibility, working together to never again accept right wing dogma that threatens them all, then everyone in the trio can help the other move forward. The potential for real peace is possible, but sharing that responsibility is the key.

The statue is great. She's waiting for change and can wait forever if necessary. Who does she wait for now? Japan sure, but it doesn't just have to be Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

sf2kDec. 30, 2015 - 01:37PM JST

@Peter Payne

I'm sure there's a lot of side issues but it cannot take away from the main ones. When one of the trio can deny it's easy for another to as well. If China Korea and Japan can forge a friendship not just on economic terms but on recognition and social responsibility, working together to never again accept right wing dogma that threatens them all."

How about the "left-wing dogma" we hear from China? Is that somehow better than "right-wing dogma"? As for China and Korea becoming "friends" with Japan, forget that fantasy; it will never happen. China and Korea have absolutely no interest in becoming friends with Japan; it better suits them to have Japan for an enemy.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@A Realist

A lifelong negative perspective must come to an end. Give peace a chance

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"Where's the statue to the Koran middlemen who, in 100% of cases, would have been recruiting these girls"

Those "middlemen" were subjects of the Japanese empire and working on behalf of the Japanese govt, and clearly not in their own people's interests.

Put another way, if it weren't for Japan's colonial adventure, those middlemen would have never existed. Japan, which deliberately brought such a state of affairs into existence, is the one responsible .

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Peter Payne: "Korea's ability to revise its own history so that they are the the only victims ever is simply amazing."

Excuse me?? As opposed to whom, pres tel? Why do you think this statue was put where it was put? As a REMINDER of what Japan has until now glossed over (and which many want it to continue doing).

2 ( +4 / -2 )

smithinjapan DEC. 30, 2015 - 04:04PM JST Excuse me?? As opposed to whom, pres tel? Why do you think this statue was put where it was put? As a REMINDER of what Japan has until now glossed over (and which many want it to continue doing).

But why this was not a issue for South Korea for almost three decades from 1966 to early 1990's when most of these survivors were still alive? If the issue of comfort women was so important to them, don't you think the South Korean government would've acted much sooner and brought attention to Japan? Point is, South Korean government couldn't care less about these women for a long time, as long as Japanese government paid their millions. The fault also lies on the South Korean government, and Park should acknowledge this.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Everyone knew WWII was brutal for every one. Either forgot everything from WWII or wait for WWIII to settle all your previous score.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I think that moving the statue is been a bit petty, what difference does it make weather its moved 3 meters away or 30 kilometres away to the next town, it will be still on display for every one to see, and tell every one what it symbolises/represents. I think it should remain firmly where it is. and if japan does not like it TOUGH! get over it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

sfjp330: "But why this was not a issue for South Korea for almost three decades from 1966 to early 1990's when most of these survivors were still alive?"

Utter BS, and you should be ashamed of yourself if you honestly believe that. When a lot of old people who were former soldiers, as an example, are in their dying dies, they often come forward and confess what they've done, or finally come forward and talk about the horrors they experienced and suffered, because they want people to know, and/or they don't want to die without telling others. In many cases, ESPECIALLY with victims, they often don't come forward straight away due to fear. You're telling me it was NOT AN ISSUE with these women until recently?? That they're suffering up to now has not been real? Shame on you! Seriously!

"The fault also lies on the South Korean government, and Park should acknowledge this."

Yeah, because Japan did nothing, right? SOME of the fault with not making the issue more of an issue in the period you mentioned, but the FAULT for what happened lies SOLELY with Japan, and if that continues to be acknowledged, then great. But let's take what you have said and apply it to today, and the future.

Imagine if tomorrow Abe visits Yasukuni, like his wife did yesterday, and starts telling "Ganbare Nippon" and other rightist groups that it was not an apology, and not compensation, but just an attempt to get things moving. Imagine that he refuses to acknowledge anything ever happened, condones language by other politicians and wingers saying as much, and yet continues to demand statues be removed and no references made about 'comfort women' anymore because "Japan gave South Korea money". Likewise, imagine if South Korea, in the interest of making progress between the two nations, tolerates Japan not standing up to the apologies and right-wing rhetoric and denial. Then some years down the road, if Japan denies there were ever any comfort women and goes back to the "they were paid whores" line, South Korea gets angry and demands further apologies and a change in tone. Are you then going to say, "What happened to the years between 2015 and now? Why was it not an issue then? Why suddenly?" and not admit it's because Japan has not stuck to their side of things? OR, if South Korea sees Abe and politicians doing what I said above and IMMEDIATELY backs out of the agreement and says Japan is not sincere, will you say, "Well, Japan's not being sincere so indeed South Korea is right to maintain it is an ongoing issue," or are you going to say, "Typical South Korea -- Japan apologized and South Korea wants more!".

I'm quite sure you would say the latter. And if they waited in the interests of progress between the two nations, you'd again start saying, "Why did they not say it's an issue until now??"

Always blaming the victim, you guys. Yeah, sfjp330, the forced sexual slavery of women across Asia and from Europe is anything but Japan's fault, I guess. Japan's the victim here.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Smithinjapan DEC. 30, 2015 - 06:54PM JST Utter BS, and you should be ashamed of yourself if you honestly believe that. but the FAULT for what happened lies SOLELY with Japan,

If I were you, I would refrain from name calling. Be respectful with people with different opinions. The comfort women issue was not raised by South Korea for individuals who suffered under Japanese colonization as it negotiated a treaty with Japan in 1965. In 1992, Korean Prof. Ahn Byeong-jik of Seoul University talks about Japanese comfort station system. An investigation conducted in South Korea by Professor on 40 survivors resulted in all testimonies not being credible. He also concluded that half of comfort station owners were Korean. The fact that half of comfort stations were run by Koreans maybe surprising to you. The brutality of some segments of the Imperial Japanese military is well known and have been tried at the Tokyo trials. Problem is that surviving Korean comfort women tells different version each time they recount their experiences. The South Koreans started attacking even the good will of former PM Murayama who spent working for the surviving comfort women as a head of AWF. Based on the testimonies that they gave, many are now questioning the stories behind it. If this is a court of law, one needs to prove their allegations and it's really not up to Japan to disprove them.

After the 1965 settlement, majority of these conscripted workers never received anything from their own government. Even if the 1965 settlement included the comfort women, what makes you think that Korean government would've disbursed the compensation money to these victims? Their government didn't care about their own people. The South Korean government needs to be forthright about the fact it spent the $800 million in compensation money and take some responsibility itself, instead of blustering that Japan “hasn’t apologized nor compensated enough.” If the South Korean government had done it’s part back in the 1960′s and disbursed compensation efficiently to those Koreans conscripted by the Japanese during WWII, much of the problems wouldn’t exist today. Why did Korean government hid and deny until 2005 (40 years later) to release a secret file to their own citizens of the $800 millions that Japan to Korea in 1965? Rather than deny, Park should say that Korean government used up the money designed for individual compensation. The problem is, there has been very little readiness to accept Japan’s efforts to promote reconciliation, and as a result, those efforts have tended to founder.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Since the Japanese and South Korean govt agree to finally settle the "comfort women" issue, the purpose of the statue is no longer needed. Although I would take it that they would want to keep it as a victory for the victims. But Japan should also have a say in it. If Japan embassy moves to a different location, and if the organization also moves along with them, then would that be pushing it? antagonizing or a form of harrassment. can't they be sued and stop.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@JeffLee

Put another way, if it weren't for Japan's colonial adventure, those middlemen would have never existed. Japan, which deliberately brought such a state of affairs into existence, is the one responsible .

Pleasedonot take it personal. but you are absolutely wrong

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Put another way, if it weren't for Japan's colonial adventure, those middlemen would have never existed. Japan, which deliberately brought such a state of affairs into existence, is the one responsible .

Please take it personal - you are absolutely right.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Uh I see. You are just arguing for arguing in vain.

"Serve them" is not appropriate description. They did for their own sakes, profiteer. It's all business.

Show me the proof that IJA paying them, ordering them to decieve, coerce, kidnapp to collect headcounts. There were opposite evidences IJA dispathed instructions on recruiting process.

They independently existed on their own. Their evil acts independently existed on it's own.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites