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Osaka cuts sister city ties with San Francisco over 'comfort women' statue

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so be it.

23 ( +30 / -7 )

Reply from San Francisco to Osaka:

Shoganai.

14 ( +26 / -12 )

Woohoo! Watch them bridges burn!

7 ( +12 / -5 )

No biggie. If you cant see eye to eye stop staring at each other.

18 ( +22 / -4 )

Interesting..... now normally the Japanese sweep their problems under the tatami mat... so to speak. At least that is what they do when the problem is mainly domestic and few outside of Japan are aware of it. This being a Internationally Visible one.... they tend to fight back more in order to protect the beautiful glossy veneer which projects Japan as a really cool, clean and honest place. Which it is.... mostly. That all said... I think they should go with plan A.... treat it as a domestic issue, put head in sand, and pretend it does not exist. I do not see anything positive coming from revoking San Fran's sister city status over this.

3 ( +22 / -19 )

What absurd is if we didn't cut ties with them. What kind of friend would build a statue in front you that proclaim loudly to the world what kind of crimes your people committed 7 decades ago. Yes,it was awful back then and we had been paying it forever since then,but doesn't mean our generation has to be reminded day by rubbing that statue into our faces.

How would it feel if we build statues of US dropping bomb on us in every nations and happily proclaim it was for friendship and peace? San Fransisco is just trying to get closer to Korea and China and flattering them. Guess our six-decade meant nothing to them.

2 ( +46 / -44 )

Well, that's just petty.

5 ( +22 / -17 )

I do not see such a thing in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I am proud of it as a Japanese. It is not the right way to make a protest.

-3 ( +23 / -26 )

A Free Japan would commiserate with SF on the statue as it would give it an opportunity to indicate the wrongness of those times and how communities that grow out of hatred are not to be feared and have grown up and out of those perspectives towards a more meaningful future for all.

The only group that would be offended by this statue is if they were still part of the old IJA Japan, are stuck in the past, and have no future.

1 ( +22 / -21 )

Finally dispute about WW2 between Korea and Japan take toll from another party.

Japan, no sign of make things better, like every years heir officials go to Yasukuni and recently they use rising sun flag during joint naval exercise, even Korean has objection for that. Of course I understand it’s official Japan’s naval ensign.

No wonder Korea now try to push more and more for memorial to remind what happened during WW2.

-2 ( +21 / -23 )

The former mayor (who passed away in December, weeks after allowing this statue) was of Chinese descent.

His father fought the Korean War.

It looks like he had an agenda.

6 ( +27 / -21 )

The truth can be a bitter pill to swallow.

14 ( +31 / -17 )

After a gradual pullback from the apology, Japan's government now denies that the women, called "comfort women" in Japanese, were forced into sexual slavery, citing a lack of official documentary proof, and says the statue in San Francisco and similar statues built in various countries wrongfully blame Japan.

GraduaL pullback and then denial. The MO of historical revisionists the world over.

The lack of documentary evidence couldn't be because Japan burned it all when it finally accepted it was going to be utterly defeated, could it?

12 ( +32 / -20 )

Here we go again... the world knows the truth even if you decide to ignore it, Japan

10 ( +33 / -23 )

No biggie.

Easier to run from the truth than face it.

5 ( +26 / -21 )

While the entire thing is something I think everyone wished did not happen, Japan has repeatedly said sorry and the 2015 according with South Korea (with payment) closed it forever. I am not saying we should forget but people need to move on and stop making a living from being a victim.

16 ( +33 / -17 )

While the entire thing is something I think everyone wished did not happen, Japan has repeatedly said sorry and the 2015 according with South Korea (with payment) closed it forever. I am not saying we should forget but people need to move on and stop making a living from being a victim.

My response:

After a gradual pullback from the apology, Japan's government now denies that the women, called "comfort women" in Japanese, were forced into sexual slavery, citing a lack of official documentary proof, and says the statue in San Francisco and similar statues built in various countries wrongfully blame Japan.

Japan should stop playing the victim. Big means and their historical facts!

1 ( +22 / -21 )

The truth often sucks, deal with it, man up.

-4 ( +19 / -23 )

The lack of documentary evidence couldn't be because Japan burned it all... 

Yep, that, and the Japan position of refusing to view existing documents compiled by the Allies and others as "evidence."

The Japanese definition of "evidence" is material written or vetted by Japanese people.

13 ( +29 / -16 )

The J-government thinks it can pull the wool over everyone's eyes just because they do it to their own people so easily.

thankfully most people in the world aren't as gullible as that and realize what really happened.

'No documentary evidence'..........perhaps that is because the period of time between the Nagasaki bomb and the eventual surrender was spent burning every piece of government paper regarding the war.I read that it was difficult to breathe in Tokyo during that time because so much paper was being burned.

thank goodness we all don't sweep everything unpleasant under the carpet.

6 ( +23 / -17 )

Osaka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura this week sent a letter to San Francisco announcing he's withdrawing from the largely ceremonial relationship,

who cares?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

To cut ties with a city over something like this is utterly boneheaded, but I'd bet San Francisco can do just fine without Osaka. Osaka to be fair will probably get by just fine too, but they're the one losing out more here. Especially because every other sister city in a relationship with Osaka knows that their bonds of friendship will be cut over the most petty and trivial of disagreements.

Good luck with that!

7 ( +22 / -15 )

Don’t let the "noren" hit you on the way out!

-5 ( +9 / -14 )

Ridiculous.

The lack of documentary evidence couldn't be because Japan burned it all... 

Yep, that, and the Japan position of refusing to view existing documents compiled by the Allies and others as "evidence."

The Japanese definition of "evidence" is material written or vetted by Japanese people. '

Exactly.

3 ( +19 / -16 )

The arrogance of these Osaka oyajis is astonishing. What gives them the right to interfere with the freedom of speech in San Fransisco?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan can't tell people not to remember the happening in the past, it's history.

4 ( +16 / -12 )

A bit ironic considering the San Francisco Peace Treaty of 1951, which formalized the end of hostilities between Japan and America.

13 ( +17 / -4 )

The arrogance of these Osaka oyajis is astonishing. What gives them the right to interfere with the freedom of speech in San Fransisco?

How did they interfere with freedom of speech? They're letting San Francisco "speak" but they're just not hanging around to listen.

Japan can't tell people not to remember the happening in the past, it's history.

But they can disassociate themselves from those people.

Osaka, you do you. San Francisco, you do you. Everyone, be happy.

3 ( +16 / -13 )

My view of the history of this.

What happened to these women, happening: evil

Somewhere down the line, SF and Osaka became sisters: cute

The statues coming up in SF: sad but true, so I’m divided. I think there’s more dilemma than malice, here.

Cutting off ties: unfortunate, but Osaka can just not be seen as letting it be, surely!

Hope: this thing is nipped in the bud.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

how people love to live in the past and want people to remember not even their own pain. what a waste of life!

1 ( +11 / -10 )

Stupid (decision).

Face the facts, live with 'em, and keep on going.

If SF wants and approved this statue, so be it!

1 ( +14 / -13 )

Historians say tens of thousands of women around Asia were sent to work in Japanese military brothels, often through coercion and deception.

The words coercion and deception seem to have different meanings in Japan. That is probably the source of the misunderstandings.

I've been in many situations in Japan where people view coercion not as enforcement but only as a suggestion.....Anything that prevents a person from making a decision is considered "force" in my English vocabulary.

Osaka city is illustrating they don't understand what the word coercion means. By trying to coerce or force SanFrancisco to change its policy they are illustrating the problem. I think Osaka should focus on running the city and making things better for the citizens that worry what foreign people think. That's the point of sister city relationships to learn how other people view the world.

-7 ( +8 / -15 )

How did they interfere with freedom of speech? They're letting San Francisco "speak" but they're just not hanging around to listen.

Osaka attempted to interfere with freedom of speech, but were told to take a hike.

-10 ( +9 / -19 )

 "Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it."

Given the J-government's desire to create it's own standing "army" (not JSDF) without the current restrictions, the above is indeed something many in countries in East Asia will be concerned about.

4 ( +12 / -8 )

Why do they not build the same thing at Korean town in Japan?

5 ( +11 / -6 )

I think we all need to be reminded of the negative things that historically happened. If Japan wants to remind the US of the atomic bomb, it is fine. Then America needs to build a stature of Japan aggressive nature that caused the bomb to be dropped in the first place. This can go on and on. But reminders are good. So that we do not do negative things again and again. Japan Today, is this post OK with you?

0 ( +14 / -14 )

Deny deny deny the wrongs committed against neighbors. Can't really change a leopards spots.

-7 ( +14 / -21 )

I think we all need to be reminded of the negative things that historically happened. If Japan wants to remind the US of the atomic bomb, it is fine. Then America needs to build a stature of Japan aggressive nature that caused the bomb to be dropped in the first place. This can go on and on. But reminders are good. So that we do not do negative things again and again. 

It's okay with me.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

What gives them the right to interfere with the freedom of speech in San Fransisco?

Wait, you don't think that freedom of speech means that someone can say anything they want without repercussion, do you?

Maybe you should actually look into what the term 'freedom of speech' actually means. Because it most definitely does not mean what your post seems to suggest it does.

2 ( +13 / -11 )

History is often an inconvenient truth. Don't like, throw your toys out and look for a new friend.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

While the entire thing is something I think everyone wished did not happen, Japan has repeatedly said sorry and the 2015 according with South Korea (with payment) closed it forever. I am not saying we should forget but people need to move on and stop making a living from being a victim.

This and only this.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

@Hiro - I completely see and understand your point and I also respect you are not trying to deny this occurred.

However on the other hand as a long term resident of Japan but a native of the SF Area I share the same as others....so what....

I do not think San Francisco really cares.

Furthermore, I do not think San Francisco will ever ask Japan to remove the Peace Park and large exhibition in Hiroshima either. As a matter of fact most San Franciscans (count me as one) think the Hiroshima memorial and peace park should always exist such that people may be reminded and hopefully never commit this type of bombing again.

I feel the same about the comfort woman statures.

0 ( +12 / -12 )

Reading all these comments, I would propose Osaka make a statue of Abomb victims and we both accept history was bad and move on.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

As an American, I am glad that the Mayor of Osaka took the action that he did. The issue of comfort women is not an issue that seriously confronts the US, San Francisco had no business in erecting a statue in their memory. If Japan, Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan and others impacted by the issue of comfort women during the war with to erect such a monument, so be it. San Francisco's action in erecting such a monument were crude, naive and disingenuous, a common trait among Americans these days.

9 ( +24 / -15 )

I'd be pissed off too, what does what happened between Japan and Korea have anything to do with San Francisco?

7 ( +17 / -10 )

Talk about making a big deal out of nothing! There are literally hundreds of thousands if not millions of statues, plaques etc around the world commemorating ppl affected by wars, human tragedies etc. It's about the victims not the perpetrators.

Japan, like most other Asian nations, are obsessed with saving/not losing face and still don't know how to deal with embarrassment (or what they perceive to be a 'national' embarrassment). They are as silly/petty as the Korean groups who've been lobbying for these memorials around the world.

8 ( +15 / -7 )

Wait, you don't think that freedom of speech means that someone can say anything they want without repercussion, do you?

What you talking about, Willis? Of course not. This toys-out-of-pram hissy fit from the Osaka oyajis reminded me of this story:

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/2015/03/04/issues/u-s-author-recounts-lecture-got-comfort-women-uninvited-japanese-guests/

And this one:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/rifkind-a-stooge-in-secret-pr-war-on-china-xfq2qp2br

There are several more examples but work beckons. If they can't control the narrative they attempt to bully, cajole, threaten and force. Or pay money to have others do it for them.

-3 ( +11 / -14 )

Hiro: How would it feel if we build statues of US dropping bomb on us

Wouldn't bother me. Go for it. Also, to show Japan's air superiority during the initial stages of the war, include statues of Japan bombing Pearl Harbor, Guam, The Philippines and other Asian nations.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

How would it feel if we build statues of US dropping bomb on us in every nations and happily proclaim it was for friendship and peace?

Like the Peace Memorial? Genpaku Dome?

The only caveat I would add to your statement being; if you want to erect Japanese memorials in other nations, you might have to ensure that Japan didn't bomb them first and carry out atrocities there first, as was often the case in the Pacific...

Name one person that has objected to the existence of the world-famous memorials in Hiroshima. They are observed and honored by people all over the world - everyday! Many people from many nations (including Western nations) continue to speak out against the bombing atrocities that the US carried out (including myself).

This move is so childish of Osaka. I'm a little disgusted by the move, but due to Japan's history revisionist, head-in-the-sand ways - I'm not surprised at all!

San Fransisco will get on just fine without the ties, and it is clear that Japan doesn't have the courage to atone for it's wartime crimes (hint: atoning would mean that the facts are not then whitewashed after throwing some money and a 'bow' at the problem).

Japan may have lost the war, but there is no need to act like a loser...

-7 ( +11 / -18 )

It is very understandable Koreans make woman statues in S Korea, but why make one in San Francisco? Japan will not build Hiroshima dome memorials overseas. It seems Vietnam has to make and put lai-dan-han statues in Korea and San Francisco.

15 ( +19 / -4 )

Reading all these comments, I would propose Osaka make a statue of Abomb victims and we both accept history was bad and move on.

Unless you want to repeat history, it is not that straight forward.

The history needs to be accurately remembered (even the soldiers wanted that ~ Lest we Forget ~). Unless we want to repeat it, it needs to be examined closely, starting at school, so that we can identify what led us down that road. This is not happening, and if you have studied the lead-up to the war, you can see many of those same identifiers popping up again (or continue to exist) - especially in Japan!

If that fire jumps the fire-break...

Of course, the US is the No.1 warmonger in the world today, but we don't need Japan radicalizing again, as we are so close to seeing.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

As a community leader in S.F. stated yesterday - the sister-city is not about politics. Politicians cannot sever ties. The relationship is between the people, the communities, businesses and exchanges and these bonds will continue.

And on another note - the current mayor Yoshimura, a disciple of the previous Osaka gov Hashimoto (comfort-women-were-prostitutes-and-needed-by-the-soldiers), was trying to play bluff by putting a deadline on his demands - the removal of the statue by Sept. end. It came and the statue remained, so he exercised his puffed up authority to declare a 60+year relationship over involving countless 1,000s of people. He decided he had the power to enact such. He actually stated that the statue is Japan bashing and as Osaka is a city of Japan it is Osaka bashing. Yeah right. So many citizens attacking the citizens of Osaka - lol.

In fact all he has done is not address the problematic issue of the comfort women, but he has certainly drawn international attention to his wave-the-wand act and most of the attention is dis-belief or mocking.

Osakas great desire to win the chance to hold the world expo in 2025 may have taken the proverbial step backwards.

-8 ( +9 / -17 )

Osakas great desire to win the chance to hold the world expo in 2025 may have taken the proverbial step backwards.

Rightly so. The people of the world are slowly starting to see that Japan's revisionism is a real issue and comes from thoughts and ideologies that are not welcome in the modern, democratic world.

The more Japan resists and ignores their own history and current sociopolitical issues, they worse they look on the big stage.

-6 ( +10 / -16 )

How dare memorials be made to remind everyone about the sex slaves. While we're at it aren't there statues of Jesus suffering in every Christian church? Let's remove those too.

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

The lack of documentary evidence couldn't be because Japan burned it all... 

That could be a very interesting subject for a monument.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

 That all said... I think they should go with plan A.... treat it as a domestic issue, put head in sand, and pretend it does not exist. I do not see anything positive coming from revoking San Fran's sister city status over this.

SP, I disagree, the simple truth of this matter was IF Japan HONESTLY admitted what it DID in WWII then there would be few if any need to have the statues etc. Japan is in essence MAKING these pop up!!

And the sick joke that only MIJ  ""evidence"" counts  is so beyond ridiculous words cant describe it & as many correctly point out Japan DESTROYED as much evidence as possible & how much you wanna bet that bits of paper have been burning on occasion as they are discovered to present & here on as well.

IF Japan simply admitted the truth it would set itself free, from ITSELF!! But Japan & too many Japanese are too stubborn & here we are, I am not sure overall Japan has learned much from WWII sadly.

-6 ( +12 / -18 )

The more Japan resists and ignores their own history and current sociopolitical issues, they worse they look on the big stage.

Most ordinary Japanese people understand comfort women/ prostitutes happened during the war whatever government/politicians say. so most people will not deny it. Wars going crazy always have caused more or less such terrible things in the past, and maybe in the future.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

As most,if not all, of both the victims and the perpetrators have "gone to their rewards" what purpose, apart from perpetuating ethnic hatred between generations, could justify the erection of these statues? Perhaps residual and existing dislike of Japan and its citizens could be a reason. There certainly seems to be plenty of it about!

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Wikipedia has a bit more background on this statue and how it came to be: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Francisco_Comfort_Women_Memorial

One thing to note... this statue is located in San Fran's Chinatown... which probably does not see Japan overall in the same way as the average San Franciscan.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

If they can't control the narrative they attempt to bully, cajole, threaten and force. Or pay money to have others do it for them.

A leopard simply can't change its spots.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Wait a second. What the hell does it have anything to do with San Francisco? It didn't happen in SF, so why build a statue? May as well build a memorial of Japanese detention centers in the US in Seoul, or a Pearl Harbor memorial in Russia. C'mon, use your brains.

If this statue was erected in S.Korea (or even N.Korea) It would make sense.

2 ( +13 / -11 )

Canada needs to build a Vimy Ridge memorial in San Francisco. It makes about as much sense.

Still, Japanese politicians overreact to this stuff. Just let it go.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

I do agree Japan has to own up to what happened, and their denial and lack of acknowledgement is disgraceful. But as I said before, this memorial is in the wrong place.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Japan has never denied the existence of the CWS. What it has denied is the narrative that "200,000 women were kidnapped by the Japanese military". Plenty of evidence in terms of documentation from the time exists, including a 7 year study carried out by the US government. No evidence has been found to support this narrative. None of documentation suggests that the women, leaving aside the issue of how thy got there, were anything but paid military prostitutes. They were not "sex slaves" as labeled by the CW crowd. They were on the IJA payroll, and many of the comfort stations were run by Koreans. So this is a continuously debated issue, wgich shows far more historical revisionism on the part f South Korea than Japan. Still, Japan has signed the 2015 agreement resolving the CW issue permanently, and abided by their terms which included both an apology and compensation. South Korea, despite catering to their domestic Chong Dae Hyup lead resistance to ending the CW issue, has stated they have no intention of abandoning or renegotiating the 2015 agreement which they signed.

The issue with the monuments on US soil is something else. These monument movements are the product of the CCP propaganda war and includes Chinese Americans and Korean Americans. This country does not need any imported hate, we have enough problems as it is. During WWII Japanese-Americans fought for their country while their families were locked up in prison camps. In contrast, these CA and KA supporters of these monuments are working against the United State, our alliances and out strategic policies. These activities need to be dealt with along with the nefarious Confucious Institutes.

7 ( +25 / -18 )

When one has no evidence to support a charge, it is ridiculous to claim that the evidence was "destroyed". Common sense, if not utterly biased, would dictate that the Japanese military facing massive defeat on every front would have neither the resources or need to "destroy evidence" of a military prostitution system when prostitution was not illegal at the time. After all, such systems were operated by other nations during WWII as well.

No nation would have as much "evidence" as the United States since we were gathering as much evidence against Japan during the war to use at the International Tribunal for the Fareast (Tokyo Trials). While first hand interrogation of Comfort Women and Korean POWs exists, nothing supports the narrative that "200,000 women were kidnapped". The US does not consider any "evidence" in connection with the CWS has been destroyed because there would have been no reason for it.

4 ( +22 / -18 )

This all started when relations worsened in 2013, when Mayor Toru Hashimoto stated that comfort women "were necessary at the time." The San Francisco Board of Supervisors then adopted a resolution condemning Hashimoto over his remark. The city also rejected a visit by the Osaka mayor.

1 ( +15 / -14 )

WWII had so many more horrific atrocities than comfort women. It's time to put this issue to rest.

-1 ( +17 / -18 )

Well, we could set up statues of slaves here in Japan showing the history of slavery in the US.

13 ( +19 / -6 )

There are several Holocaust memorials and permanent displays in London. A large new one is about to be built. The UK did not perpetrate the Holocaust.

Wikipedia tells me that the so-called "original Holocaust", that of one and a half million or so Armenians in the Ottoman Empire during WWI, has 135 memorials in 25 different countries.

I'm sure everyone can come to their own opinion on this particular issue. My point is simply that having a memorial in a different place is nowhere near unprecedented.

7 ( +16 / -9 )

I'm sure everyone can come to their own opinion on this particular issue. My point is simply that having a memorial in a different place is nowhere near unprecedented.

Common sense. Lost on so many apologists on here.

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

Well, we could set up statues of slaves here in Japan showing the history of slavery in the US

You'd be welcome to do so. I doubt most Americans would object or even care, as unlike Japan historical revisionists have very little credibility.

3 ( +15 / -12 )

Unfortunately this is a part of our (human) history and not one to be proud of. Japan should learn to understand that it was / is a sad point in its past but to take comfort (no pun intended) in the fact that ever since after the war had ended it has proven itself to be a 'model' nation of peace and humanity.

There are so many other countries which are guilty of committing these same heinous crimes but I will not be naming them. Osaka should NOT be breaking any ties over something like this. Absolutely not. The people of San Francisco are not stupid , they will not dislike Japan or Japanese for what has happened in the past because they can see what Japan and Japanese are, now, in this present day and age.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

Demographics. According to the 2010 Census, there were approximately 1.7 million people of Korean descent residing in the United States, making it the country with the second largest Korean population living outside Korea (after the People's Republic of China).

This may be important

5 ( +7 / -2 )

@onion. Hashimoto was the lawyer who fought to keep prostitution legal...research about him.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Oh come on Japan, wake up and smell the matcha. No matter how much you convince yourselves that the comfort women never existed for lack of concrete evidence, you can't deny what really happened. Seriously, just come clean, admit it, and accept it - war is never pretty and people do horrible things to the other. It'll be a ton of weight off the Japanese's shoulders.

4 ( +17 / -13 )

Good for Osaka! Historical guilt is lame.

Plus, SF is an awful town.

-13 ( +10 / -23 )

Hashimoto was the lawyer who fought to keep prostitution legal

Prostitution is one thing, but forcing women to prostitute themselves is a whole different thing. As far as I know, Japan is only denying that they forced some of the women to become prostitutes.

Historians say tens of thousands of women around Asia were sent to work in Japanese military brothels, often through coercion and deception.

Who exactly did the coercion and deception?

5 ( +12 / -7 )

Seriously, just come clean, admit it, and accept it - war is never pretty and people do horrible things to the other. It'll be a ton of weight off the Japanese's shoulders.

When mixed with a heavy cultural stubbornness and inability to process criticism in a healthy way, I truly believe the 'educational system' here has taken away so many social tools and problem solving abilities from children that the average citizen of Japan simply doen't have the ability to own up and resolve this issue. The problem is now inter-generational. The willfully ignorant teaching others to be ignorant of their own past.

No one is judging the current generations for the atrocities, but rather the ideology and mind-set that chooses to ignore and obfuscate any fault of Japan, both past and present.

It'll be a ton of weight off the Japanese's shoulders.

Totally! And for many others around the globe, too! It's both good manners and commonsense to apologize for wrong-doings (and mean it) among civilized adults... especially when it's at an international level. Time for leaders to... lead in Japan!

1 ( +11 / -10 )

Osaka stamps it's foot and pouts and the grown up world, rightly, ignores it.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

As a San Franciscan, I am embarrassed. Our mayors, too often, do not think before they act...or they act contrary to the law.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

non event.  not like this kind of twinning actually means anything.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@Chip Star: Japan isn't pulling away from the apology, they just want it settled, Japan has repeatable said sorry and paid a ton of money. No one likes the fact it happened (Japan included) and no one should forget it happened, but how many apologies do they want? Never forget but lets move on please.

3 ( +13 / -10 )

Without question, 100% self-defeating. As an American who does business in the Bay Area, this is self-serving tripe. Asian Americans oftentimes deride the 'perpetual foreigner' stereotype thrown at them. Yet, if you're Asian-American HOW DOES THIS IMPACT YOU? This has nothing to do with America and if you want to grind an ax against Japan, why drag America into it? Talk about pettiness.

If you're ABC (American Born Chinese), what are you: American or Chinese? If you're American and you want to be acknowledged as such, you wouldn't even THINK about this non-event. I can assure you that here in the Midwest, NOBODY knows and NOBODY cares. You know why? BECAUSE IT DOESN'T INVOLVE AMERICAN HISTORY.

Lame.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Well, we could set up statues of slaves here in Japan showing the history of slavery in the US

My hometown in the UK, a city deeply involved in the slave trade, later built a museum showing the horrors of this disgrace in the city centre.

A very grown-up, responsible and honest gesture.

Just trying to give an example of one way to deal with past moral obscenities.

9 ( +18 / -9 )

In this day and era, being a victim is virtuous, honorable.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Japan isn't pulling away from the apology, they just want it settled, Japan has repeatable said sorry and paid a ton of money. No one likes the fact it happened (Japan included) and no one should forget it happened, but how many apologies do they want? Never forget but lets move on please.

So which is it? "We paid a lot of money, and said sorry" or "It never happened, the girls were willing prostitutes".

Saying sorry, but then omitting the truth from text books and national awareness makes your apology completely REDUNDANT. Both now, and forever more. That's why Germany is applauded for its post-war efforts and Japan is not.

Japan knows how to make this stop. By taking responsibility (in the true sense of the word). A deep bow and throwing some money around will not make this issue go away, but manning up will!

4 ( +14 / -10 )

Japan shoudn't apologize. Neither should any conqueror, colonizer, etc. Strength will always topple, and be more righteous than weakness. No matter how you try to twist morality.

-14 ( +6 / -20 )

My hometown in the UK, a city deeply involved in the slave trade, later built a museum showing the horrors of this disgrace in the city centre.

Ah, sounds like the one in Bristol. A noble idea - if history is forgotten, what lessons can we learn?

It's a shame the Osaka mayor is being so petty over such an important memorial.

Women are treated appallingly the world over. This should never be glossed over.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

As a San Francisco native I am more proud of the city of birth now than I have ever been. If you are from Osaka you should be ashamed of your mayor. He is no better than a Holocaust denier.

-1 ( +15 / -16 )

Japan shoudn't apologize. Neither should any conqueror, colonizer, etc. Strength will always topple, and be more righteous than weakness. No matter how you try to twist morality.

An argument put forward by imperialists and their apologists since the first empires rose. People's slaughtered, subdued, their religions, languages and rights taken away. Women and children raped and/or sold into sexual slavery.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

WWII had so many more horrific atrocities than comfort women. It's time to put this issue to rest.

Appalling attitude. Bad things happened to other people so your experiences and trauma does not count.

Stop dismissing these women and what happened to them.

3 ( +13 / -10 )

As individuals and as nations we always prosper more when we forgive and forget. Life is too short and beautiful to waste time dwelling on the evils of 70 years ago.

There are so many great people in the nations involved (Japan, China, the Koreas, Taiwan, U.S.) with so much to offer each other. It's time to forget WWII and positively move forward.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

@Toshihiro: Japan does not say they did not exist, only hard line extremists do (not the government). Japan wouldn't not have apologised again as recently as 2015 if they did not think it happened. The argument is mainly on the number of woman, but in reality one is too many and all sides think that.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

@Kabukilover: No one in Japan (or Osaka) believe it did not happen. The exception is the right wing nuts in the country to which every countries has them.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

I think the sex slaves (I don't like the word "comfort women") should be remembered. However, they should be remembered here in Japan with statues here. I doubt most Americans really care about the issue.

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Osaka mayor’s decision to end the sister city relationship with San Francisco is truly unfortunate. But tuhe mayor is doing the right thing. The “Comfort Women” is the biggest fake news of the century. Even the US government could not find any evidence that they were forced into prostitution. Perhaps you should read this:

http://eng.the-liberty.com/2014/5641/

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

When one has no evidence to support a charge, it is ridiculous to claim that the evidence was "destroyed". Common sense, if not utterly biased, would dictate that the Japanese military facing massive defeat on every front would have neither the resources or need to "destroy evidence" of a military prostitution system when prostitution was not illegal at the time. After all, such systems were operated by other nations during WWII as well.

No nation would have as much "evidence" as the United States since we were gathering as much evidence against Japan during the war to use at the International Tribunal for the Fareast (Tokyo Trials). While first hand interrogation of Comfort Women and Korean POWs exists, nothing supports the narrative that "200,000 women were kidnapped". The US does not consider any "evidence" in connection with the CWS has been destroyed because there would have been no reason for it.

Historians also confront the problem of missing war crimes evidence. The problem

was particularly acute regarding Japan. Intensive Allied bombing and accidental fires

destroyed many documents during World War II. Moreover, at the close of the war,

Japanese authorities hid or destroyed much evidence of the country’s war crimes.

https://www.archives.gov/files/iwg/japanese-war-crimes/introductory-essays.pdf

The US wasn't collecting intelligence on comfort women because it wouldn't have helped win the war.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

An argument put forward by imperialists and their apologists since the first empires rose.

If you want to call me an imperialist, it's an epithet I'm proud to bear. It is a thousand times better, I imagine, than being a victim.

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

Wait, you don't think that freedom of speech means that someone can say anything they want without repercussion, do you?

You are correct that this is not what freedom of speech means. However, it does not change the fact that Osaka was attempting to interfere with freedom of speech by demanding the statues be removed; Osaka just didn't get what it wanted.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

If you want to call me an imperialist, it's an epithet I'm proud to bear. It is a thousand times better, I imagine, than being a victim.

Being the victim is Japan's national, passive-aggressive identity ever since they lost war the started, along with all the territories they brutalized... You are right! Being the victim is not pretty, especially when you choose to be at the expense of real victims being silenced.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

In the pic, I find the old man caressing the woman's leg somewhat creepy.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

You are correct that this is not what freedom of speech means. However, it does not change the fact that Osaka was attempting to interfere with freedom of speech by demanding the statues be removed; 

Who did Osaka city try to have arrested for the statue? Because that’s the only way this could be a freedom of speech issue. Freedom of speech is not the right to say whatever you want without repercussion, it means the right to say whatever you want without legal prosecution.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

As the surrender was signed, the Japanese established comfort women stations for arriving GIs, with the intention of keeping them off "regular" Japanese women. This was done officially, not by yakuza or pimps.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/25/AR2007042501801.html?noredirect=on

https://www.nytimes.com/1995/10/27/world/fearing-gi-occupiers-japan-urgesd-women-into-brothels.html

1 ( +4 / -3 )

If you want to call me an imperialist, it's an epithet I'm proud to bear. It is a thousand times better, I imagine, than being a victim.

Oh, there's no fun in having families ousted out of their homes and the daddy been interned without trial and all that. Or the soldiers laughing as they wreck the family home and eye up the 15 year old daughter.

Or when they collude with local paramilitaries to set a bomb off in the local meeting place. Or when the soldiers who open fire on civil rights marchers are awarded medals for their murderous actions.

Yes, I can imagine it's a source of pride and succour for imperialists and occupiers to kill, maim and discriminate against the people they conquer.

Not enough statues going up for the victims of imperialism, in my book. It's the very least that can be done.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

What does Korea really want from Japan?

A proper Apology? Will all people from Korea accept it if Japan properly apologize and bows to Korea? There wil be some who will still make issue no matter what because Victims grudge never disappears.

Let the Whole World Know? This will put both neighbour countries to shame, not just Japan.

South Korea is playing as The Righteous Army here, but still getting the bullets. No wonder they have been making this 'Comfort Women' genre movies recently a lot. And it is not helping Younger Korean Generation, it is actually frightening them instead and that is why most Younger Korean themselves don't care about this at all. Their stress party life goes on.
1 ( +8 / -7 )

Osaka should just say, "It was a dark period in history for which Japan bears a heavy responsibility. We don't know what this has to do with San Francisco but that is their prerogative."

And leave it at that. No need to cancel anything.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

One other point: This issue is not mentioned in the US because the Korean and Chinese women who were brought to Japan as sex slaves (don't like "comfort women") were made to service US servicemen during Occupation. I wonder if there is a note about this at these statues. It was due to the surge in venerial diseases among US servicemen that McArthur made prostitution illegal.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Who did Osaka city try to have arrested for the statue? Because that’s the only way this could be a freedom of speech issue. Freedom of speech is not the right to say whatever you want without repercussion, it means the right to say whatever you want without legal prosecution.

Being restricted in what you express or an entity trying to restrict what is being expressed makes something a freedom of speech issue, not being arrested. Being arrested is the most striking example of a government attempting to restrict what is expressed, but it's not the only way.

Freedom of speech means the right to express yourself without governmental interference. Osaka was trying to pressure the city government of SF to restrict the expression that is manifested in these statues. This means that Osaka was trying to interfere in the freedom of speech.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

In America, Japan's government is not the government, and has no legal power, which is why the right to free speech is not applicable.

Osaka was trying to influence the government of SF to restrict the speech of the people that put up the statues. This means Osaka was trying to interfere with freedom of speech.

Censorship does not require an arrest. You can be censored by not being allowed a permit to protest in the park.

The right to assemble is the ability to meet people, not express anything. When you meet with people and want to express something (protest) then freedom of speech is implicated.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I don't really think that the vast majority of people in Osaka and San Francisco (99.99%) will notice any difference in their day to day lives.

Since it was Osaka (mayor of) who cut the tie, then it is Osaka that does not want the symbolic friendship anymore. Fine. Sayonara, have a nice day.

There are far more important things to be getting on with, in fact this is not really any important news.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

There are far more important things to be getting on with, in fact this is not really any important news.

Not to you maybe.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Since it was Osaka (mayor of) who cut the tie, then it is Osaka that does not want the symbolic friendship anymore.

Oh? Was there a referendum? Or just a few bloated-ego, entitled old men that made the decision FOR the people of Osaka?

There are far more important things to be getting on with, in fact this is not really any important news.

For sure! Fixing your many ailing international relationships is one. Make your bed, sleep in it and all...

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Oh no. What will happen to Frisco now?! Is this the end? I say hit Osaka with a gut punch by getting a Seoul sister.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

"the cities will remain connected through "people-to-people ties."

That has always been by far the most important thing anyway.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

the cities will remain connected through "people-to-people ties."

That has always been by far the most important thing anyway.

Absolutely. Like I say, who will really notice any difference.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

"Comfort women" were abused also by Americans and Korean soldiers. What about a statue to remember the women abused by all soldiers in war, regardless their nationality? But it wouldn't work according to some specifical political agenda... Anyway, it's impressive like some people apparently never understood it, and they will continue to say always the same stuff, without trying to understand geopolitics, but letting themselves be manipulated by propaganda.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Plus, I didn't read all the posts (honestly it's always the same things), but I wonder if anyone noticed how biased this article is. They say Japan apologized in 1993, but since that moment it started to deny the problem. So, are they denying that there were new apologies and an agreement about this issue also in 2015? Did they forget about it? AFP is amazing... XD

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Oh, sorry, I meant The Associated Press, not AFP. ^^

1 ( +5 / -4 )

When I saw the headline I immediately thought of that rather large district in Osaka behind the shopping arcade in doubutsuenmae where there are several blocks of obvious prostitution.

Then I read the last paragraph about how Japan is upset with the statue and how it wrongfully depicts them as embracing prostitution and for blaming them for the thousands of women they kidnapped and coerced to work as prostitutes in military brothels. Then, I still think of that same district that is still thriving at this very hour and has been for over 100 years.

I realize that there is a difference in the comfort women's situation and that particular district, but it's more similar than it might seem. Few if any women set out to become prostitues. Most of them are coerced, tricked, or forced into the profession.

I just found it a bit amusing (for lack of a better phrase) that Osaka officials would be appalled that someone is linking such a thing to them and attempting to deny the past when I would bet a sizeable sum of money that all of them are aware of those several blocks of brothels behind dobustuemae arcade.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Well, make sure to mention this little chapter of Osaka's history as they continue to bid for the 2025 World Expo and desire to showcase Japan to the world and welcome people from all walks of life, and cultures.... errr... guess not. It's not San Francisco going down in the bad books for this.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

This is my whole point. You can't remember or know only what is convenient to you.

It's a fact that Japanese soldiers abused of women during war, but it's ALSO a fact that later American and South Korean soldiers abused of women, with the support of the South Korean government. They were called "Yankee Princess". This is why I think all this story is used conveniently to keep the tensions alive between South Korea and Japan (the situation with China and other Countries is way blander). I understand South Korea can't accuse also their current colonizers for the same crime, and I also understand their current colonizers must act like the heroes, despite history is different, and they ALWAYS fought for their national interests, exactly like ANY other colonial power, NEVER for the sake of the others. They are not exceptional, unlike what the theory of American exceptionalism says, to justify their actions. But they are too much brainwashed to understand it.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

@Smith: whatever you like to think. :)

2 ( +7 / -5 )

@Strangerland

Who did Osaka city try to have arrested for the statue? Because that’s the only way this could be a freedom of speech issue. Freedom of speech is not the right to say whatever you want without repercussion, it means the right to say whatever you want without legal prosecution.

That's a rather narrow definition, isn't it? You're not actually defining what freedom of speech is. You're only claiming that the concept of free speech depends entirely on the existence of a government to punish you for speaking. However, in America the constitution says that 'congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech'. This simple statement tells us two things; 1. Freedom of speech has an independent existence which pre-dates the United States government 2. Following on from that, this freedom is something closer to a natural right which exists with or without any government authority. Both of these points seem to run contrary to your suggestion that no infringement of free speech can occur without a criminal prosecution.

My view is that any disincentive to speak can be a potential abridgement of free speech. Anyone, including a foreign government or a private company can abridge this natural right. Of course, what the US constitution doesn't say is: 'Congress shall make laws protecting the freedom of speech". So far congress hasn't passed extensive laws protecting freedom of speech. This is the only reason private companies and individuals can abridge others' freedom of speech on a daily basis with impunity.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

There's not any Country that fights for the sake of other Countries, every colonial power acted/acts for its own interests. This is my absolute position about colonialism.

I don't mean to lose my time with people who write things I never implied or said, just because they are biased and, especially, they don't want to admit how some historical problems are used only for strategical interests. Someday, things will change, but we need a stronger multipolar world. We need way stronger Russia and China, because pluralism is the key for a balanced world. And this last sentence, will bring me tons of thumbs down. ^^

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Regarding comfort women statues, Vietnam should put Lai dai Han statues beside the comfort women statues in South Korea and San Francisco because of Lai Dai Han during Vietnam war. Vietnam government has been demanding apology and compensation for a long time. Nothing yet from S Korea.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/vietnam-war-women-seek-justice-mothers-raped-south-korean-soldiers-war-untold-stories-a7940846.html

8 ( +8 / -0 )

@ hiro

What absurd is if we didn't cut ties with them. What kind of friend would build a statue in front you that proclaim loudly to the world what kind of crimes your people committed 7 decades ago. Yes,it was awful back then and we had been paying it forever since then,but doesn't mean our generation has to be reminded day by rubbing that statue into our faces. 

How would it feel if we build statues of US dropping bomb on us in every nations and happily proclaim it was for friendship and peace? San Fransisco is just trying to get closer to Korea and China and flattering them. Guess our six-decade meant nothing to them.

You've a point and although I think that some issues with neighbouring countries should be solved definitely and that the Japanese should leave the victim mode, I agree that statues raised in a country where most inhabitants are either ignorant or in denial of warcrimes committed in name of that country since WW 2 is pretty ridiculous..

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I don't see any issue with supporters putting up a statue in San Francisco remembering the comfort women. BUT. If San Francisco city permitted the statue (remembering human rights abuses by the Japanese army) to be built on city property, don't act so surprised that Osaka city wish to cancel their twin city ties.

Its not that difficult to understand that city property carries a level of it being an official statue in San Francisco, therefore an official statue about Japanese army human rights abuses, and thats the whole point of the Osaka city protest.

Don't act so surprised that Osaka city are unhappy, especially as the abuses happened nowhere near San Francisco, which should be neutral of that history.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

"We need way stronger Russia and China, because pluralism is the key for a balanced world."

That comment reminds me of the old Tom Lehrer song "Who's Next?"

"First we got the bomb and that was good, 'cause we love peace and motherhood.

Then Russia got the bomb but that's OK, 'cause the balance of power maintains that way, who's next?

Then China got the bomb but have no fears, they can't wipe us out for at least 5 years, who's next?"

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Osaka mayor cut ties, also please grab a tissue and cry like baby. Come on, admit what you did and appologise show remorse. This goes for all countries not only Japan.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

smithinjapan, how about if Osaka city built a statue remembering the 1949 ROK eradication campaign that killed 1,668 civilians in Jeju? Would you also criticise any Korean government officials who protested to Osaka city by cutting ties? Or would you say that history had nothing to do with Osaka city and the statue should not have gone up there? Or is this only about Japan for you?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I do not understand why a statue in San Francisco is so upsetting to people in Japan. Is it because Japanese deny the history behind the statue? If that is the case, then it seems to me that opinions in Japan are in the wrong.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Japanese companies should also cut their business relations with CA.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

Sorry Serano

You wrong.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Japanese companies should also cut their business relations with CA.

Might not be such a bad idea. One way of reducing the USA trade imbalance with Japan.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Just curious...Of you that are saying, don’t forget the past. How many of you (talking to the Americans in the group) were for the tearing down of the statues in the South?

I’m not saying what side of the argument I am on. Just a curious question.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Japanese government has apologized and paid millions to those countries. How long are they going to do this? Are the Jews constantly asking Germany for apologies and compensation? Enough is enough. Koreans and Chinese are just after more money.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

What does being sister city even means? Surely won't change things.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

San Francisco is not a place to be associated with anyways. Human feces, drugs, gang member hoodlums, rampant crime. Terrible place San Francisco is today, they already made poor choices, now they are poor themselves.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

So which is it? "We paid a lot of money, and said sorry" or "It never happened, the girls were willing prostitutes"

I wouldn't discount the possibility of people thinking both, and not having a problem with that fact, as absurd as it would seem.

There's not any Country that fights for the sake of other Countries, every colonial power acted/acts for its own interests. This is my absolute position about colonialism.

I think that's a good position to have. Because then you can quite neatly explain that anything good that happened - like better infrastructure or ultimate independence from a former European coloniser in the case of SE Asia - is only incidental to Japanese imperialism. And it's fair because it applies to British or any other country's past imperialism/ colonialism.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Note the lack of interest about the Comfort women and any children that they bore during that time. Not much as actually changed in our modern me-too age. As for a statue to Slavery, why not as it never ended. After all the thirteenth amendment does not affect forced labor in our prisons that puts ordinary labor out of jobs. Consider our school to prison pipeline we have for Black students, and Hispanic students.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

SF is quite literally a garbage city, nothing of value is lost

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Becoming a thorn in between the relationship of other nations with Japan by planting a memorial spreading hatrade is so low that it does not promote an example of positive attitude in humanity.

Lillian Sing, co-chair of the Comfort Women Justice Coalition should also be called “the international figure of Scared to MOVE ON AND FORGIVE”. WHATS PAST IS PAST.

Go spend the money & time to help the rohingya, syrian refugees, yemen starving kids instead, please! City Mayors should be wiser not to entertain these Historical Extremists.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Osaka cuts sister city ties with San Francisco over 'comfort women' statue

Seems as if this action has only attracted more attention to an issue that the government would prefer to sweep under the rug of forgotten history!

Simply looking at how many comments there're are this thread is just one example.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Japan shoudn't apologize. Neither should any conqueror, colonizer, etc. Strength will always topple, and be more righteous than weakness. No matter how you try to twist morality.

If you want to call me an imperialist, it's an epithet I'm proud to bear. It is a thousand times better, I imagine, than being a victim.

@Mr.Noidall, easy to say until you find yourself on the receiving end. Remember the golden rule. And by the way, it's a big world out there... and an even bigger universe. It's something you'll regret dearly.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Unfortunitly it does not matter what Japan says or does or how many times they appologies for past. There will always be people who complain about the past but these same people say nothing about the crimes of all nations present and past who have done the same thing through out history. It's fine to remember the past and learn from it but to keep throwing in peoples faces who had nothing to do with past events and who we're not alive at such time needs to stop...

1 ( +8 / -7 )

What will it do to aging islanders, this: “me first” forever?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Japan being offensive? It's more likely than you think.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

San Francisco is not a place to be associated with anyways. Human feces, drugs, gang member hoodlums, rampant crime. Terrible place San Francisco is today, they already made poor choices, now they are poor themselves.

I watched a documentary about San Fran recently and i was shocked. Lets just say avoid like the plague. It really is a very expensive dump.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Well done, Osaka. Do some research you people, the fact. And how the have been behaving. What a joke.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Propaganda

Wars are always causing crimes all over the world ,

the list of war crimes would go on ....such as Chinese crime to Tibet people , American crime to Philippines independence movement .....Cambodian communist to their own people .......

but we had to overcome the past in order to build peace for present time .

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I do not understand why a statue in San Francisco is so upsetting to people in Japan. Is it because Japanese deny the history behind the statue? If that is the case, then it seems to me that opinions in Japan are in the wrong.

Because it has nothing to do with San Francisco. Its only purpose is to keep reminding people how "evil" Japan is. If the statue were accompanied by a statue of Vietnamese women raped by Korean soldiers, and statues of other atrocities committed in the past, then you can call that history. But when a group gathers and continually lobbies to paint one particular country in a bad light, that is just plain racism.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It has little meaning, twin towning/citying - it's little more than a civic thing, so just a Political slight upon each other. No more.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I've been in SF for the past week. No one here I've mentioned this to cares and, if polled, would vote in favor of recognizing these women's pain instead of friending Osaka.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Most people do not know about it actually. It was on CNN for a bit but I think many are unaware

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Actions speak louder than words.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Men were killed. Women had sex. Let's put a statue up to the women. Yeah, that's the right priority ...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The issue has taken a wrong turn by forcing a moral, ethical issue relative to a past war situation and condition into the wrong venue or I should say the wrong stage. By erecting a "physical" object on a foreign soil in an effort to "force" an agenda, regardless of the large population of native Koreans in the USA and especially in SF, they have definitely stepped over the bounds. It is similar to China fortifying and literally taking the islands in the S China Sea, intimidating not just the local population but the entire world community.

If the US can decide to remove its consulate or embassy in Iran, Osaka which has lost its faith in the SF State government, basically ignoring the close working relationship and respect given each other "after" the war which divided the two countries and the state, they could do the same in protest. Not to say that the rest of the community and business do not continue to work closely with SF.

But it is probably one way in an effort to keep the matter from becoming "emotional" issue as with Pear Harbor and Hiroshima. "Emotional" issues are often impossible to resolve rationally and amicably. It is well known that bilateral negotiations are still happening, so this act forces the hand to become an emotional issue internationally. That in liberal SF, one of the most well known city in the US.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm not sure how many San Franciscans were directly affected by the terrible treatment of women by the JIA. However, if the monument was erected to simply be “a symbol of the struggle faced by all women who have been, and are currently, forced to endure the horrors of enslavement and sex trafficking” as SF Mayor London Breed says, then it should a) acknowledge the Japanese, Taiwanese, Burmese, Indonesian, Dutch and Australian women that were interned, and b) state which regimes are "currently force women to endure the horrors of enslavement and sex trafficking". Instead, it depicts women from just three nations (that continue to maintain a resentment toward modern Japan/Japanese) and carries a plaque which specifies that 200,000 women were abducted by the armed forces of the government of Imperial Japan.

Into the future, on any given day, I envisage this incongruous, parochial monument will promote more Japan bashing than food for thought. Woe betide any innocent, Japanese-American school children that must pass by this monument on their daily commute. It doesn't quite provide a forward-looking, hope-for-a -better-future image that a Peace Memorial or Peace Park would promote.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@kazetsukai

regardless of the large population of native Koreans in the USA and especially in SF,

The statues in SF were erected by Chinese American community at the heart of Chinatown in SF. Has nothing to do with the Korean community.

But it is probably one way in an effort to keep the matter from becoming "emotional" issue as with Pear Harbor and Hiroshima.

At Washington DC, there is the Holocaust museum, even though the US was not responsible for the Holocaust. Why is that? Because such atrocities must never be forgotten regardless of where it took place.

The same with the Statue of The Goddess of Democracy replica erected at Washington DC's Victims of Communism Memorial. The event took place at the Tienanmen Square, but America won't forget the brave protesters who took up a rise against communism.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

"Sandakan Brothel No.8: Journey into the History of Lower-class Japanese Women" by Tomoko Yamazaki with translation by Karen F. Colligan-Taylor.

This is all you'll ever need to know. Nihon, I'm a fan, but you are wrong in this issue. Blame it on the corrupt generals if you must but accept it, make due recompense, and settle the issue down into the trash heap of Human misery we call World History. It simply looks weak to be so obviously dishonest or suppressive about something so exhaustively documented and known to be fact by the whole rest of the world. Like America always claiming it wants "Peace". C'mon guys, Does 'Bushido' include telling obvious craven lies about one's past behavior?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

What absurd is if we didn't cut ties with them. What kind of friend would build a statue in front you that proclaim loudly to the world what kind of crimes your people committed 7 decades ago. Yes,it was awful back then and we had been paying it forever since then,but doesn't mean our generation has to be reminded day by rubbing that statue into our faces.

How would it feel if we build statues of US dropping bomb on us in every nations and happily proclaim it was for friendship and peace? San Fransisco is just trying to get closer to Korea and China and flattering them. Guess our six-decade meant nothing to them.

Thank you for illustrating to America and the rest of the world the problem with East Asian pettiness. These memorials are about the victims, not the perps. Kind of like how the holocaust museum is about the victims of the holocaust and not an attack on Germans. But I guess I shouldn't expect too much from Asian society, since the Asian cultural line of thinking also lead to nazi worship.

https://www.vice.com/sv/article/xd5bdd/nazis-chic-is-asias-offensive-fashion-craze-456

BTW Japan does have several memorials commemorating victims of the atomic bomb. You don't see Americans bitching about it. And kudos to others who have already mentioned that Japanese interference here is an interference to American freedom of speech. Chinese, South Koreans, and Japanese maybe used to having restrictive free speech in their home countries, but Americans value their free speech.

After Trump demolishes China's interference into American Free Speech Infringement (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNZlOl-hI-M), he should turn his attention to South Korean and Japanese interference with American liberties.

Japan and South Korea are lucky that Americans are overlooking those two countries temper tantrums, only because China is acting like an insecure bully who try to force American companies and academics to self-censor themselves.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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