Statues of a man kneeling in front of a girl symbolizing victims of sexual slavery by Japan's World War II military are placed at the Korea Botanical Garden in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Photo: The Korea Botanical Garden via AP
politics

New 'comfort woman' statue in South Korea stokes anger in Japan

142 Comments
By KIM TONG-HYUNG

A pair of new statues in South Korea of a man kneeling in front of a girl symbolizing a victim of sexual slavery by Japan's wartime military is the latest subject of diplomatic sensitivity between the countries, with Tokyo's government spokesperson questioning whether the male figure represents the Japanese prime minister.

Kim Chang-ryeol, owner of a botanic garden in the mountain town of Pyeongchang, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he canceled an unveiling ceremony for the bronze statues that was to take place on Aug 10 because of what he described as unwanted controversy.

Kim said the statues were his idea, but that he didn't specifically intend the male figure to be Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Since his inauguration in 2012, Abe has stoked anger among South Koreans over his nationalistic stance on Japan's wartime past and his demands that South Korea remove similar statues symbolizing sexual slavery victims in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul and other sites.

But the statues at Kim's garden also drew criticism among some South Koreans, who described them as tacky or excessively provocative on social media. Kim defended the statues, saying they reflect his wish for the countries to resolve their conflicts over history. He didn't expect the statues to trigger political debates.

"The man could be Abe and also couldn't be Abe," said Kim, who will keep the statues at his garden. "The man represents anyone in a position of responsibility who could sincerely apologize to the victims of sexual slavery, now or in the future. It could even be the girl's father. ... That's why the statues were named 'Eternal Atonement.'''

Relations between South Korea and Japan sank to their lowest point in decades last year as they allowed their decades-long disputes over wartime history to spill over into issues related to trade and military cooperation.

During a briefing in Tokyo, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said it would be unacceptable under "international courtesy" if the statues' male figure did indeed represent Abe.

"I think such a thing is unforgivable under international courtesy," Suga said.

Kim In-chul, South Korea's foreign ministry spokesperson, acknowledged that countries should consider "international comity" in regard to foreign heads of state, but he didn't provide a clear answer when asked whether private citizens should be asked to follow such practices.

Disputes over sex slaves are a legacy of Japan's 1910-45 colonial occupation of the Korean Peninsula. Historians say tens of thousands of women from around Asia, many of them Korean, were sent to front-line military brothels to provide sex to Japanese soldiers during World War II.

Under South Korea's previous conservative government, the countries attempted to settle the dispute over sexual slavery in a 2015 agreement for Tokyo to provide 1 billion yen ($9 million) to a Seoul-based foundation to help support victims.

The deal was hugely unpopular in South Korea, where many people criticized their government for settling for too little and accused Tokyo of attempting to silence the victims with money. The liberal government of current South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who took office in 2017, took steps to dissolve the foundation, saying the deal lacked legitimacy because officials failed to properly communicate with the victims before reaching it.

© Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


142 Comments

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No statue is an island.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

it's not Abe...Abemask is missing...

51 ( +54 / -3 )

Kim Chang-ryeol, owner of a botanic garden in the mountain town of Pyeongchang, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he canceled an unveiling ceremony for the bronze statues that was to take place on Aug 10 because of what he described as unwanted controversy.

So why put them in at all?

7 ( +24 / -17 )

The comfort women certainly didn't feel comfortable. A statue serves as a good reminder of what must never happen again.

22 ( +48 / -26 )

If the man was holding a sand wedge....then it could be Abe.

14 ( +18 / -4 )

Fools and pseudo-artists seeking just money are ubiquitous. I do not like those shallow and nonsensical behaviours. But it is a matter of civilians. If any Japanese governmental official protests over it, it would be more comical.

-22 ( +12 / -34 )

This ol' chestnut again?!

South Korea keeps picking at this scab so the festering wound will not heal. Apologies have been made, money's have been paid. Now MOVE ON already!

7 ( +52 / -45 )

the whole economy is in for the worst depression, the whole world is frantically trying to salvage their economy and at the same time fight nan unseen enemy..this is the time to cooperate and work together except SK see nothing else but their hate

1 ( +32 / -31 )

Why not just ignore it? It's because it gets such a reaction among certain Japanese ojisans that they do this. Why does JT choose to give this story top billing on today's page?

46 ( +60 / -14 )

This is rather hilarious. I don't think it strokes much anger in Japan. It is too childish and most Japanese will simply shrug off.

11 ( +27 / -16 )

S Korea needs to move on, what was done is done, we cannot go back to history and fix it right? That’s why we call it “WAR”. No need to keep dragging the history and winning about it. On top of everything, Japan did apologize and compensated big money to your government many years ago. No body knows what S Korea government did with the money. It obvious looking like S Korea government is greedy, hypocritical and brainwashed the people.

1 ( +34 / -33 )

Unacceptable behavior from the owner.

-26 ( +15 / -41 )

Why does JT choose to give this story top billing on today's page?

That is a good question. An obscure park in an obscure city. It's almost as though they want to help stoke tensions between the countries.

42 ( +48 / -6 )

Can’t be Abe, no mask

14 ( +18 / -4 )

This is gross. Koreans enjoying it. Stay away from them.

-17 ( +20 / -37 )

Bowing would have been better. Kneeling like that just feel weird. Is like she is dominating him. When i look at it, all i can see is that he worship her.

-3 ( +17 / -20 )

The statue building of anti-Japanese symbols seems to have become a vital industry (partly with state backing) in South Korea. They have been trying to mass-produce and export them overseas. People are already aware, and tired of Korea's game of money solicitation by weaponizing wartime history.

The comfort women campaign has ended up being badly tarnished by Yoon Mee-hyang, the leading activist who had embezzled the compensation fund aimed at former comfort women. She is fully corrupt. I demand that Yoon's "apologetic" statue be installed there. The comfort woman (statue) deserves her apology.

12 ( +27 / -15 )

S Korea needs to move on, what was done is done, we cannot go back to history and fix it right? On top of everything, Japan did apologize and compensated big money to your government many years ago.

For as long as this issue angers the Japanese right wing, it needs to be done.

And an apology for a great crime is not just a one off formulation of words, but needs to be accompanied by a genuine sense of remorse - Japan has never given anyone the sense that there is a collective sense of remorse in the way that there was in Germany, for example.

4 ( +30 / -26 )

The hair nose and profile sure looks like Abe plus the exceptionally tiny hands. It’s this guys garden so he can do what he likes but for the story to get here in front of us is pretty pathetic, next...

19 ( +20 / -1 )

"I think such a thing is unforgivable under international courtesy," Suga said.

I don’t get it. This is a statue in somebody’s garden, the South Korean government had nothing to do with it. They have no obligation to ensure that no artwork anywhere in their country offends the PM of Japan personally. And international diplomatic norms don’t apply to what private people put in their gardens.

This is just a stupid objection.

21 ( +35 / -14 )

And the eternal conflict continues....

14 ( +17 / -3 )

Allow them to mourn history peacefully and in their own way. It’s part of the healing process. Just keep quiet. It’s the response that stirs it up again.

13 ( +17 / -4 )

It seems to me some S Koreans don't want to move on from the past. Most countries moved on after the war.

-7 ( +19 / -26 )

Won't Korea give it a rest. This issue is dead and buried, and was settled once and for all in 2015. Its completely finalized.

The South Korean government must immediately order that these statues are removed from public view, or face big sanctions. It is outrageous to represent PM Abe in such a statue, it hurts Japanese peoples feelings.

-11 ( +20 / -31 )

HAMBURGERToday  06:43 am JST

The comfort women certainly didn't feel comfortable. A statue serves as a good reminder of what must never happen again.

This. If the statue makes you uncomfortable consider how (most of) the women themselves felt as sex slaves to the Japanese military. Lest we not forget.

9 ( +22 / -13 )

These newer countries like South Korea and America are a little lost, so they grad on to strange things that they think will help build their national Identity. They don’t have 500+ year old traditions like tea ceremonies, cheese rolling or pancake flipping races like other older countries.

Their national pride is much stronger because of this newness.

invalid CSRF

-14 ( +8 / -22 )

I don’t think this statue is meant to be antagonistic. To me, it is showing respect for a part of South Korean history. It is a very dark and controversial part of history, but that does not mean it should be ignored and/or forgotten. Any resemblance to Abe is just media fiction to assure controversy. I think it is quite a respectful and tasteful statue.

-3 ( +14 / -17 )

@kwatt

It seems to me some S Koreans don't want to move on from the past. Most countries moved on after the war.

When a person(s) commits a grave and unforgivable sin/crime against others, denial, obfuscation, and angry suppression are NOT 'moving on'. All that the people of Hanguk want is a SINCERE apology and some sense that 'crimes against women' actually means something to Nihon. So far, the right wing leaders of Nihon refuse to face their predecessor's profound War Crimes and choose national pride (goest before the fall) over healthy examination, because the roots of those crimes still lives in their souls. Germany took full responsibility for their war crimes. THAT is "moving on"...

2 ( +20 / -18 )

LOL. Look at the comments of those anti-Korean readers here. It is just a statue in a private garden. Was it just yesterday that in the news some Koreans are upset because the USA ambassador to Korea has a mustache so he has to shave it? You are no different than those anti-Japan Koreans.

0 ( +15 / -15 )

@yoshisan88

He claims he shaved it because of mask and heat. And if an American (or any) Ambassador showed up in Poland with a 'Hitler' mustache? They would make Polish sausage for the hogs out of him...

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

Just a storm in a bowl of kimchi. Politicians and their lackeys can always be counted on to react emotionally, taking umbrage over the slightest suggestion of an affront to their puffed up amour-propre. Why should the kneeling man represent Abe? The world of politics is a cultural desert whose denizens have not the slightest understanding of art and aesthetics. Sure, the symbolism is elementary, not Michelangelo, but it does convey the idea of men expressing shame and remorse and asking forgiveness from women who have been wronged and abused. The finger of accusation can even go far beyond the narrow confines of the injustices perpetrated by the Japanese on Koreans. All of us may meditate on our guilt.

"international courtesy" ?

Hypocrisy would be a better word given the present suffering of millions of women and children around the world who have to endure all the horrors of war waged by menfolk and the deafening silence of the politicians who have turned their backs to their plight.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

@ah_so

And an apology for a great crime is not just a one off formulation of words, but needs to be accompanied by a genuine sense of remorse - Japan has never given anyone the sense that there is a collective sense of remorse in the way that there was in Germany, for example.

You don't have children, do you? This is how it goes: after someone does the wrong thing, they get found out, they are shown the error of their ways, there is guilt/remorse, then there is apology/reparations, then forgiveness, then it's forgotten.

Remembering past errors are always a good reminder not to return there but it's best to move on as per my earlier comment.

And there will never be a collective anything from Japan because it's wartime aggression is NOT taught. Any reference to it has been removed from text books which, in the Japanese mind, means it didn't happen. That's not right, I know. But that will never change. Best to move on.

And no good to compare with Germany because they are a mature people, able to learn from past mistakes and grow from the process. The Japanese are a socially backward, immature people, who believe if you hide the facts, then it didn't happen. Maybe this will change over time as Japan becomes a more international multicultural society...

8 ( +19 / -11 )

yoshisan88Today 07:54 am JST

LOL. Look at the comments of those anti-Korean readers here. It is just a statue in a private garden. Was it just yesterday that in the news some Koreans are upset because the USA ambassador to Korea has a mustache so he has to shave it? You are no different than those anti-Japan Koreans.

It's deeply amusing, isn't it. These pathological Korea-haters are just like little puppets, jerking around as their strings are pulled.

rainydayToday 07:30 am JST

"I think such a thing is unforgivable under international courtesy," Suga said.

I don’t get it. This is a statue in somebody’s garden, the South Korean government had nothing to do with it. They have no obligation to ensure that no artwork anywhere in their country offends the PM of Japan personally. And international diplomatic norms don’t apply to what private people put in their gardens.

This is just a stupid objection.

"International courtesy," that's a new one. What bottomless arrogance leads Japanese politicians to believe they have control over what people in other countries put in their gardens....

3 ( +18 / -15 )

it’s often the case for the country I think. .. It’s like ,,, something to explain their feeling about Japan with childish way.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Let the world be witness.

We are going through a Pandemic.

Relations are already low between S. Korea and Japan.

What does S. Korea do? Escalate the situation with statues like this.

Japan will take a weak approach as always with S. Korea... than wonder why they treat Japan as a joke, not someone to be respected or be taken serious. They can even back out of aggrements signed with no consequences.

2 ( +15 / -13 )

Hear! Hear! You go, ExJourno. Although I don't completely agree with the 'move on' part, your statement gets my vote for "Truth in Journalism". Nihon just has not yet given up their fascination with pure psychopaths as leaders and Shinzō does an excellent portrayal... And I just had to repost your comment in case it got one of those "OFF TOPIC" censorships we see here.

You don't have children, do you? This is how it goes: after someone does the wrong thing, they get found out, they are shown the error of their ways, there is guilt/remorse, then there is apology/reparations, then forgiveness, then it's forgotten.

Remembering past errors are always a good reminder not to return there but it's best to move on as per my earlier comment.

And there will never be a collective anything from Japan because it's wartime aggression is NOT taught. Any reference to it has been removed from text books which, in the Japanese mind, means it didn't happen. That's not right, I know. But that will never change. Best to move on.

And no good to compare with Germany because they are a mature people, able to learn from past mistakes and grow from the process. The Japanese are a socially backward, immature people, who believe if you hide the facts, then it didn't happen. Maybe this will change over time as Japan becomes a more international multicultural society...

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

And, may I add that America has not given up that fascination either...

-7 ( +8 / -15 )

I love it. Its not the South Korea is being childish. They are being strong and taking a stand that they are strong and that is their right.

-5 ( +13 / -18 )

All these “move on” people need to understand that the same sentiment could be applied just as easily to the Japanese.

Oh Hiroshima was bombed. It’s time to move on. It’s war it was in the past and it’s over.

Yeah not such a great line of thinking now is it?

Yes it’s war, yes it’s in the past but for some people and their families it is never over. Learning how to move forward in a world that knows what happened and making sure it never happens again to anyone is how we survive.

7 ( +18 / -11 )

@WilliamBjornson

Thanks. Perhaps "move on" is just my visceral reaction to the whingers who keep this incendiary topic alive. I think moving on equates to the healing process. But that doesn't mean forget it ever happened. I should have been more clear.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

I agree.

You don't have children, do you? This is how it goes: after someone does the wrong thing, they get found out, they are shown the error of their ways, there is guilt/remorse, then there is apology/reparations, then forgiveness, then it's forgotten.

Remembering past errors are always a good reminder not to return there but it's best to move on as per my earlier comment.

And there will never be a collective anything from Japan because it's wartime aggression is NOT taught. Any reference to it has been removed from text books which, in the Japanese mind, means it didn't happen. That's not right, I know. But that will never change. Best to move on.

And no good to compare with Germany because they are a mature people, able to learn from past mistakes and grow from the process. The Japanese are a socially backward, immature people, who believe if you hide the facts, then it didn't happen. Maybe this will change over time as Japan becomes a more international multicultural society...

0 ( +9 / -9 )

@William Bjornson

Japanese former prime ministers (except Abe) have apologized for decades since 1990s and Japan made the Asian Women Foundation and compensated to victims but some refused it. In 2015 S Korean and Japanese government agreed that this case was resolved completely and irreversibly at that time, so Japan had to pay 1 billion yen to S Korean government and most of victims and their families have received the compensations from Japan, but a few did not. It seems Japan did it well, so move on.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

The Korea Botanical Garden

Do the capital letters mean this is open to the public?

(I hope it does look like Abe)

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I think that one of the issues is that the Nihonsei "SAMURAI SPIRIT" alive in rightwing politicians and the lesser mentalities still sees the Hanguk People as 'inferior', a 'conquered people' and the World kinda knows what some Nihonjin think of 'conquered people'. When the slave is freed and seeks equality from the former oppressor (in the U.S. since 1863), the oppressing psychopath has only hostility and fear... and what does Nihon owe Hanguk after thirty-five years of profound abuse and cultural destruction? I think Nihon is frightened of what HANGUK owes NIHON for those years...

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

Who cares...let the Koreans have their statue. At least its on their own soil. Americans have to live with tons of confederate statues littered all over the country.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

That's like a kick in the ballz to Abe-san.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

GrungeHamsterToday  08:17 am JST

All these “move on” people need to understand that the same sentiment could be applied just as easily to the Japanese.

Oh Hiroshima was bombed. It’s time to move on. It’s war it was in the past and it’s over.

The Japanese have moved on. The bombings are memorialized with the theme and prayer for peace, that it never occur again. Unlike South Korea, it is not used to perpetuate hate. As a result numerous nations attend the A-bomb memorial services.

"93 nations to attend Hiroshima Peace ceremony. HIROSHIMA: Representatives of 93 countries and the European Union were slated to attend the Aug. 6 peace memorial ceremony in Hiroshima as of Wednesday.."

-2 ( +14 / -16 )

@GrungeHamster

I don't disagree with you. However, the constant, overly focused attention on past wartime aggression is not the pathway to peace. ANZAC DAY in Australia is about remembering fallen soldiers on ALL sides of a conflict. We move on because it leads to healing and peace. But we always end the remembrance services with the words "Lest We Forget".

In modern times, for every family who lost someone in Iraq or Afghanistan, there is a family in both of those places that also lost someone. Their loss is the same as ours, irrespective of the politics of the day.

And for Korea, the forced prostitution of women by the Japanese is still sensitive (Let's stop using the phrase "Comfort Women" and call it what it was). However it really is time to stop pushing Japan for more apologies and money. That's been taken care of (more than once) and it really is way past time to move on - with the caveat (Lest We Forget).

8 ( +14 / -6 )

The statue could as much symbolize Moon Jae-in oppugnant, belligerence, demanding retribution of a modern peace-loving nation and people, over atonement absolution and forgiveness all at the expense of the frail pensioners, comfort women.

In the cynical use of political propaganda to further the aims in fanning the flames of discontent and conflict, Moon Jae-in has wasted every opportunity to put the interest of the victims first.

There is no attempt to reach out and engage, what is left is a never-ending culture of detest and loathing, charged with intense hostility and aversion.

Politicians, are the problem, not the solution, from elements of Prime Minster Abe cabinet, through to poisonous Uyoku dantai, and ghastly anti Korean prejudice of Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike xenophobia and revisionism hiding behind a sanitized branding exercise, the so called "tolerant conservative"

One suggestion is a Royal Commission tasked with the process of positive engagement to find a solution. That must fully take into account the victims thoughts and wishes. No more deals.

Statues, spare us all, the cancel culture tears one as soon and another goes up.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

The bombings are memorialized with the theme and prayer for peace, that it never occur again

it is not used to perpetuate hate

My thoughts exactly. The conflict and the divide will otherwise continue to be fueled over time.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

"Please marry my son, he needs a life and not more video games".

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I honestly think the Japanese look way more petty when stuff like this happens. Every single perceived slight is broadcast on all the national television channels as if they're being deliberately insulted and not just recording their own history. They could just ignore it and it's pretty rich how Japanese people get annoyed about foreigners telling them what to do when they act like Korea should do what the Japanese say in Korea!?

If the media ignored it nobody would care. It's deliberately exaggerated and amplified

5 ( +15 / -10 )

European nations have what's known as Holocaust denial laws. I can't understand why Korea hasn't introduced similar laws for Japan's war crimes. Forget Japan's empty apologies; let's remember how many times Japanese politicians have DENIED the country's war crimes. Unit 731 -- didn't happen. Sex slaves -- were 'volunteers.' Pearl Harbor -- America made us do it. If Korea wants an apology, I'm pretty sure they don't want it coming out of the mouth of a Japanese politician.

0 ( +13 / -13 )

The guy made some art. In his mind. Art is, after all, in the eye (and mind) of not just the beholder, but the creator.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

OssanAmerica

'The Japanese have moved on.'

Really? The Nagasaki 'Peace' Museum I visited totally whitewashed Japan's ugly side of the war and seemed to be designed to brainwash Japanese schoolkids into thinking that all Americans are cowardly murderers. In this debate, remember the one truism: The only people who know nothing about Japanese history are the Japanese themselves.

3 ( +19 / -16 )

Dogezabe ?!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

So childish... as the BLM, Antifa, Black Panther...etc. who will keep harping back to the irreversible past.... as if it will enable them to become self sufficient/productive members of society.... and pluck themselves out of the ghettos, gov't housing, welfare programs, drug use, deadbeat dads, unwed moms.... indolence... and off the streets.

Like South Korea.... and those people crying racist... they will forever use "useless_forgotten_memory" as a rallying cry.... even after 100 years from now.

Sign of the times....just saying.

-13 ( +8 / -21 )

I don't understand the Japanese protest over this.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

The only type of person who can have any problem with such a statue is someone who cannot let go of Imperial Japan. Japan of today should be welcoming these events as it helps define a time IN THE PAST that SHOULD NEVER BE REPEATED and allows for reconciliation and being able to move on with its neighbours. 10 times 1000 times it's fine. It helps everyone move on.

However by continually showing only protest, Japan says it never got over WWII, Imperial Japan will never be buried, and that's a bad sign for everyone.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

billygonzoidToday  09:12 am JST

OssanAmerica

'The Japanese have moved on.'

Really? The Nagasaki 'Peace' Museum I visited totally whitewashed Japan's ugly side of the war and seemed to be designed to brainwash Japanese schoolkids into thinking that all Americans are cowardly murderers. 

Yes really. Fabrication doesn't make a point.

-5 ( +12 / -17 )

My two favorite enemies just love rubbing each other the wrong way. This will be going on until the end of time and I can't wait for the rebuttal.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Did they return the 1 billion Yen to Japan after they dissolved the Foundation or did they steal it like they did the compensation paid in 1965

The 1965 Treaty Article II:

1 The High Contracting Parties confirm that the problems concerning property, rights, and interests of the two High Contracting Parties and their peoples (including juridical persons) and the claims between the High Contracting Parties and between their peoples, including those stipulated in Article IV(a) of the Peace Treaty with Japan signed at the city of San Francisco on September 8, 1951, have been settled completely and finally.

According to 1965 Treaty the whole issue regarding the People of Korea and providing compensation was settled. In 1965 The South Korean government demanded a total of 364 million dollars in compensation for the 1.03 million Koreans conscripted into the workforce and the military during the colonial period.

To me it seems south korea is in the wrong and just wanting another top up. talk about Greedy.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

Emperor Naruhito is the key to finding solace, born two decades after the end of WWII, sitting outside any political interference.

Sometimes critical of historical revisionism and on occasion openly expresses only engagement and the recognition of the importance that WWII is remembered ‘correctly’ can heal the historic grievances.

Emperor Naruhito, studied at Oxford, has a international outlook.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

seemed to be designed to brainwash Japanese schoolkids into thinking that all Americans are cowardly murderers.

It is your only biased impression. Schools also don't brainwash children such biased things. Schoolkids will not get it the way just like your biased impression. Museum is place just tells whole truths of what happened at that time.

2 ( +11 / -9 )

Abe should visit and lay flowers. Make a speech acknowledging the war. Then pivot and talk about the burdens of the past should not be holding the present and future down. Talk about the present peoples of Korea and Japan and how intertwined families and culture have become. That love will win. That the thinking of the past and how it hurt so many must never be forgotten, must be faced head on, so that we can truly live in peace and harmony.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Sounds like the usual distraction news when the Japan Goverment is in serious trouble ( once a NK Rocket, this time a statue in a SK Private Garden, an otherwise a talent having an affair etc ) . Lets solve the waste of taxmoney ( abenomask ) the Kawai Scandal, the Cherry Blossom Scandal, the Prosecutor Scandal, the Moritomo document tampering scandal and the fresh and still lingering Go-To-Travel Campaign.

Anyone interrested in a statue in a privat garden that might or might not look like a bowing man ? Nope, use your time and energy to care and support the own people in the current pandemic BETTER.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

If Japan is still angered by their war crimes, then they're not truly apologetic for it. Why can't they do what Germany has done? (i.e. set up a memorial for the murdered Koreans, return all national treasures, actually teach history to their people without white-washing it, etc)

Some of the comments here are disgusting - who are you to tell someone to "get over it" after being raped, murdered, pillaged? How about you tell Germany to demolish the Memorial of the Murdered Jews because it's "picking on old would"?

Obviously, Korea (and Japan) BOTH need to move forward but never get over it. It's always good to have reminders of the past to guide us into the future.

1 ( +12 / -11 )

this mr. kim love to live in the past and is a trouble maker. sharing hate instead of love.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

sf2kToday  09:41 am JST

Abe should visit and lay flowers. Make a speech acknowledging the war.

Which war would that be? The invasion of the 1500? Or are you talking about WWII during which time some 250,000 Koreans served in the Imperial Japanese military and made use of the Comfort Stations and some of whom were convicted as War Criminals for their treatment of Allied POWs?

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

@Ah so

So you making it sound like your own people as Korean men don’t do bad thing such as rape and assault Korean women, or even kill their own wives (Vietnamese) and much much more in your country?

I am not Japanese but what I see and understand is S Korea has always been hatred at Japanese people even they don’t do anything to you but you keep picking on and attacking at Japan for everything. As far as I am concerned how it is in your country, seems like S Korean people say and do is totally opposite. Big liar, fake and hypocrite nation.

Common, it is 2020... for god sake...move on and grow up.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Do you see Germany protesting if monuments are erected to the Holocaust? No. In fact they have a museum in Berlin apparently, detailing how beastly the Gestapo were.

Do we see Japan doing the same thing with the Kempei Tai, or Unit 731? No.

Because Japan likes to bury, and whitewash the unsavory parts of its history, whereas Germany makes them public knowledge. So the evils of the past don't happen again

1 ( +9 / -8 )

The Japanese have moved on. The bombings are memorialized with the theme and prayer for peace, that it never occur again. Unlike South Korea, it is not used to perpetuate hate.

Its an interesting comparison but I think its worth noting that even though the U.S. government has never apologized for that war crime, nor even admitting it was a war crime, they are also not mass denying that it ever happened on one hand while the other hand pays compensation and apologizes. American history textbooks provide a lot of detail about the atomic bombings but Japanese textbooks do not give a lot of detail about the mass rapes and sexual slavery. Ask an American about the atomic bombings and you will get an answer if most will not be satisfactory. Ask a Japanese about WWII sex slavery and get a "Nani?"

And then you have some simple facts like America occupying Japan after the war influencing law and textbook writing directly. Koreans were free from the end of the brutal Japanese occupation. Plus, Korea is a divided country today because of the turmoil caused by the Japanese occupation and warring across Asia.

But no one has ensured this issue never die more than the Japanese, with the Japanese government being the primary actor. So expect more statues.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

I don't understand the Japanese protest over this.

Since I only read about a single Japanese man's statement on it, neither can I. I cannot see that "stoked anger" in Japan mentioned in the headline. At all.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

KurukiToday  09:51 am JST

Some of the comments here are disgusting - who are you to tell someone to "get over it" after being raped, murdered, pillaged?

Because what damage Japan did to Korea is objectively speaking, absolutely nothing compared to what other nations did to others during WWII. And they have all moved on. And don't forget that Japan never invaded Korea the way they invaded other Asian countries. Korean soldiers in the Imperial Japanese Army were in China- raging, murdering and pillaging as well as torturing Allied POWs in the Phillipines. When you consider this fact, South Korea's fixation on playing a perpetual victim of Japan looks ridiculous. Perhaps it works domestically where anti-Japan doctrine and historical revisionism is ingrained into the education system, but not so in the outside world.

-12 ( +9 / -21 )

"And don't forget that Japan never invaded Korea the way they invaded other Asian countries."

No, they just interfered in Korean affairs, finally annexed the country, tried to suppress the language, and conscripted Koreans into slave labour and sexual slavery. Did I miss anything?

0 ( +8 / -8 )

I'm not angry. I just don't care. We have much bigger problems.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

I don't understand the Japanese protest over this.

Because the Kneeling man looks like prime minister Abe and S Korean media say the man is Abe. If they did not say the name of it, it would be no problem.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Be great if it was Abe

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

A fairly senior former Soviet officer once observed to us that the difference between the west and east is that westerns experience guilt for wrongdoing while those from the east, meaning Asia, do not know guilt, only shame. This was someone who had spent a great deal of their career in both Asia and the west. He mused that for Asians, nothing one does is wrong unless they are caught, but they don't experience guilt, only shame and loss of face. It was a major distinction to him. Westerners are more introspective than Asians he said. No Asian nation that I am familiar with allows the full details of their history to be taught. Japan hides the truth about it's militaristic behavior from the late 1800s through the end of WWII from its people. China doesn't teach its citizens about Mao's barbarities such as the Cultural Revolution (the last university that was teaching it, Fudan University in Shanghai was recently put on notice to cease) and Great Leap Forward, their 1979 war against Vietnam (which they lost badly and the veterans of which are ignored and denied) or anything regarding the 1989 democracy movement that led to the Tianamen Square Massacre. Writing the truth of how Lee Kuan-yew came to power in 1959 in Singapore will get you jailed there. It happened to a pair of US journalists in the 1990s. So in that regard Japan is more normal than not among its Asian peers.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

The world would be a better place if people stop digging the healer wound just to start a bigger scar.

We learn from history but should not suddenly look for revenge. It seems like the style of this new world.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Onlookers of these statues may help but giggle at them. Have they made the comfort women issue a laughing stock?

7 ( +8 / -1 )

What does S. Korea do? Escalate the situation with statues like this.

For whoever's sake, it is a private statue in a private garden. What do you want the Korean government do? Send police to knock it down? I bet then thise right wing Japanese would complain they kill the Japanese PM. Leave the bloody statues alone!

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Maybe its a shrine dedicated to “Femdom” fetishists?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

This is Arts! For different people has different taste of Arts!

1 ( +5 / -4 )

If the statues were a gift from japan would have been sincere apology.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

S. Korea is not Israel.

S. Korea is right next door to Japan has more reasons to keep historical issues open and fresh.

Israrel is 3000kms away from Germany.

Distance matters, S. Korea has a much longer history with Japan compare that to Israel and Germany. Fact

Germany involved in two world wars plus the holocaust have moved on. Normal country again, normal military again, leading EU.

S. Korea will always have political, historical, land, sea issues with Japan because of the distance.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

It's just a statue in a private botanic garden... we can discuss if it was really needed or not, and we can discuss if the man looks like Abe or not (I don't think so, but in a statue like that it's easy to "see" anyone you want), but why it has to be such a big international problem?

Those facts happend. Japan officially apologized and gave to Korea the money they asked. For the countries themselves it should be something already set.

The rest is all about the single person, to deal with it. Remember, forget, forgive or not... as long as they keep it respectful to the other people way of thinking, they are free to do whatever they want. And a statue like that doesn't have anything offensive or wrong.

The ones not "letting it go" are more the japanese rather than the koreans, I guess (at least in this case)...

Nobody would say anything if a private japanese decide to make a statue to commemorate the victims of the atomic bombs, so why a private korean can't do the same for a matter he cares about?

2 ( +6 / -4 )

"S Korea needs to move on, what was done is done, we cannot go back to history and fix it right? "

Translation: Japan wants you forget its crimes against humanity. The Japanese "cannot got back and to history and fix it right" which means the wrongs Japan committed will remain forever. Thus, the outrage must remain forever. The statues are reminders. They are not retribution.

5 ( +15 / -10 )

This is coming from the same country complaining about Japanese UNESCO sites.

Complaining about U.S. Ambassador mustache which his half Japanese, they feel offended by his mustache. Remind them of the past.

.....But you Japan should be ok with dozens of comfort women statues all over the world, now we will put a bowing man in front of them too.

-2 ( +10 / -12 )

vanityofvanities:

This is gross. Koreans enjoying it. Stay away from them.

Being repeatedly raped is gross.

You need a sense of perspective.

As long as Japan continues to ignore the past, this kind of thing will continue.

Maybe Abe and his extreme nationalistic mates will get the message one day.

I doubt it though.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

The sculptor is clearly pulling his punches. He should have depicted the kneeling figure grasping a short sword and severing his pinky in apology.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It's obvious the Japanese also have not moved. It makes their blood boil whenever these statues comes up. Ignore it. You've apologized. End of the story.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

I don't see the point why Japan have to officially protest on what the South Koreans do with their statues and memories,oh maybe the old right wingers oyajis from nippon kaigi and the rest of the crick feels personally touched,whitewashing the truth is always the best solution for them.

But they can only mind control their own propaganda not other sovereign nations.

And I agree with some posters above,Germany can't be compared in such matter because they showed how to learn from their own mistakes and regain prestige and honour in the world community,and this is all thanks to an excellent and non controlled history propaganda.

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

And I agree with some posters above,Germany can't be compared in such matter because they showed how to learn from their own mistakes and regain prestige and honour in the world community,and this is all thanks to an excellent and non controlled history propaganda.

Read my post above.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

"The man could be Abe and also couldn't be Abe," said Kim

LoL, thought this was a joke...

10 ( +10 / -0 )

During a briefing in Tokyo, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said it would be unacceptable under "international courtesy" if the statues' male figure did indeed represent Abe.

Suga San, look back at your own people first.

https://dattarakinchan.hatenablog.com/entry/20181203/1543846906

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

If the Japanese government wasn't involved then, why is it so upset, now?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I am much more worried that the return of fascism is more likely to happen in "repentant" Germany than in Japan.

I guess it's something hard to say, because they are very different.

In my opinion (and I can be wrong..), in Japan they need a very strong person at the top of the country leading everybody on that way, to be able to see a return to fascism. Japanese people tend to "follow the flow" and are easier to follow someone that is already in a strong position.

In Germany, it's easier to have smaller groups of fanatics acting by their own or trying to gain power.

Same for Italy, where the fascism was born... but I guess that the chances to go back to fascism there are way less than in Germany.

Which is the most scary? No idea...

2 ( +4 / -2 )

These South Korean elders strict their children to get higher degree yet those children are brainwashed by the same elders. They won't stop eating the pets.

Statue is about a Korean man asking for forgiveness to his wife that he became such a shame to let his wife like a poor soul. His carelessness and selfishness was his weapon.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Criticism has also been raised from Korean officials as well as people over the statue. Though not getting surprised at the news, (may feel like teasing it a bit, sometime) I also don't believe that such anti-Japanese extremist move as representative and widely supported in SK society. The NO Japan boycott has failed. The money scandal relating to the comfort women fund enraged the public.

The sculptor might try to claim it's a private property and free speech. He also remains elusive if not cheating by implying the statue may be anyone, not specifically reflect Abe. It is unwise for Japanese officials to make an official protest; they are yet free to express discomfort publicly. All in all it doesn't deserve a top story in the news report.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It's funny how the news are always about Korea, maybe Japan is riding on the hate too ? We never see the statues in Hong-Kong for example, which are way more visible to the population than some obscure private garden in Korea.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Christopher GlenToday  10:21 am JST

"And don't forget that Japan never invaded Korea the way they invaded other Asian countries."

No, they just interfered in Korean affairs, finally annexed the country, tried to suppress the language, and conscripted Koreans into slave labour and sexual slavery. Did I miss anything?

Yes, you missed that Japan never "invaded" Korea as a starter. There were no battles or casualties between Japanese and Korean troops. If you think I'm wrong go ahead and name them.

You also completely ignore the fact that the 1910 annexation could not even have occurred without the Koreans themselves being split into those for and against. And that it was internationally recognized as legal and supported by all the major powers at the time.

Japan conscripted ALL Japanese into labor forces and recruited Comfort Women. And All Koreans had Japanese citizenship and were in fact "Japanese" at the time. Furthermore, the Korean language Hangul was supported by Japan from 1910 until 1943. It was effectively prohibited for 2 years out of 35 years.

-3 ( +12 / -15 )

I disagree Luca,Italy have a stronger right wing support than Germany,some exampley?

LA LEGA: Salvini

Fratelli D'Italia (used to be the M.S.I. post fascist party led by Almirante who used to fight with the R.S.I.)

And a lot of smaller parties from the right wing area,personally I think the average Italians are way more discriminatory than the average Germans one.

One thing I agree with you,Japanese tend to follow the main stream and are easier to be influenced due to a culture of almost never or never questioning the leaders,therefore to stay on topic of this thread many common Japanese unfortunately feels outraged when they see Koreans display such statues but on the other hand they want to play the victims of A-bomb without knowing the background and what leaded to all these sad events.

What their government can do is to keep honouring their history which is very ancient but also acknowledge from the mistakes of history.

Because in the end at a certain point of history every nation did something bad.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

No Asian nation that I am familiar with allows the full details of their history to be taught.

I don't know why the moderator keeps censoring my post because it is based on fact but I will post it again.

Don't be so patronizing. You can say the same thing about England's lack of education regarding atrocities committed against the Irish. Also, German textbooks do not teach about their 1st genocide committed in Africa against the Herero and Nama which was the first genocide of the 20th century, waged by the German Empire against the Ovaherero, the Nama, and the San in German South West Africa during 1904-1908.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

Ken WyattToday  11:35 am JST

vanityofvanities:

This is gross. Koreans enjoying it. Stay away from them.

Being repeatedly raped is gross.

The Comfort Women System existed for the purpose of preventing rape.

As long as Japan continues to ignore the past, this kind of thing will continue.

South Korea and Japan negotiated and signed an Agreement in 2015 that "Settled the Comfort Women Issue permanently". It included money and an apology from PM Abe, both of which South Korea received. Then as soon as Moon came into office he ripped up the agreement.

Japan has not ignored this issue at all, and made good faith efforts to resolve it. It is South Korea which has reneged on it's words, kept the money from the actual surviving CWs, and continues to repeat false claims to keep the hostility alive.

-8 ( +9 / -17 )

@OssanAmerica

South Korea and Japan negotiated and signed an Agreement in 2015 that "Settled the Comfort Women Issue permanently". 

Signed? This is a common misinformation of naive Japanese people. It was an oral agreement without any signature, which means the agreement is legally void.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

OssanAmerica

“The Comfort Women System existed for the purpose of preventing rape.”

it is still rape unless you are saying that they agreed to be a comfort women?

I hope not.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

@sj

Even if it was oral agreement, this is completely an official agreement between state and state whatever, because the former S Government agreed about it with Japan. That's why Japanese government paid 1 billion yen to the S Korean foundation's account after the agreement was settled. It seems to me S Korean government did lie about the agreement to get the money?

7 ( +10 / -3 )

In both China and S. Korea, there are nationalist groups who always want to keep these issues alive because if they don't, nobody will give them any money donations.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

What is the fuss about when the statue represents a woman coerced into prostitution?

The Koreans can do as they like as Korea is a sovereign country.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Statue in a private garden of some Korean nationalist is not the same as govt commissioned art. What gives Jgovt the right to demand interference about what a private foreign national puts in his garden in another country? Btw.." International courtesy " ..that's a good one Suga, how much international courtesy is Japan showing the hundreds of thousands of "international citizens who reside, work, have families etc in here but have been locked out of coming back in the last few months whilst retuning Japanese face no restrictions...that kind of " international courtesy"?

0 ( +9 / -9 )

This Korean obsession with Japan bashing is both embarrassing and tiring. How childish.

0 ( +14 / -14 )

@William77

I disagree Luca,Italy have a stronger right wing support than Germany,some exampley?

Well, right wing doesn't mean automatically fascist. Lega Nord had no real connection to it, and was more about federalism or secessionism rather than fascism.

Salvini is the italian Trump... I guess it says all :)

Fascism itself was not all bad, so even if Fratelli D'Italia (MSI - AN) had its roots in fascism, it doesn't mean that it's a fascist party, or that is trying to put a new Mussolini at the top of the country.

But I guess we are going OT...

Because in the end at a certain point of history every nation did something bad.

Indeed at the end every country did something bad or wrong.

Trying to ignore it is as bad as keeping using it to fuel anger or using it as a political tool for other purposes, no more related to those episodes. I guess there is something behind it, if a statue in an unknown botanical garden got so much hype about it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Japan-Republic of Korea Relations

Announcement by Foreign Ministers of Japan and the Republic of Korea at the Joint Press Occasion.

https://www.mofa.go.jp/a_o/na/kr/page4e_000364.html

Not a treaty but a deal, an understanding. A treaty would have drawn a line, supported by International Law.

It a betrayal by both Governments for future generations to have to endure the resent and animosity for an era that more than 85% population of Japan could not possibly be held accountable for.

However,

Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea signed June 22, 1965.

https://treaties.un.org/doc/Publication/UNTS/Volume%20583/volume-583-I-8471-English.pdf

Is a Treaty, as such is enshrined in international law, and most importantly presented the normalization of diplomatic relations.

The above photo portrays a seething contempt, to arouse humiliating mocking disgust, irredeemable repugnance along with distasteful cheap and tacky overtones.  A shameful embodiment of politically motivated propaganda to deliberately, provoke, enrage and goad.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Is a Treaty, as such is enshrined in international law, and most importantly presented the normalization of diplomatic relations.

The above photo portrays a seething contempt, to arouse humiliating mocking disgust, irredeemable repugnance along with distasteful cheap and tacky overtones. A shameful embodiment of politically motivated propaganda to deliberately, provoke, enrage and goad.

I see. And where in that treaty, or anywhere else in the entire body of international law, does it say anything about the South Korean government (or any government) having an obligation to do something about statues on private property in its own country because the Prime Minister of Japan (or the head of any other state) doesn't like them?

That isn't actually a thing. Japan has no case here.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

As Koreans and Japanese are very closely related, I do not really understand the continuing acrimony between the governments.

It is childish...

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

"Japan conscripted ALL Japanese into labor forces and recruited Comfort Women"

Ah, you mean "sex slaves". While some signed up voluntarily, the vast majority were tricked or forced into it.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

@kwatt

Even if it was oral agreement, this is completely an official agreement between state and state whatever, because the former S Government agreed about it with Japan. That's why Japanese government paid 1 billion yen to the S Korean foundation's account after the agreement was settled. It seems to me S Korean government did lie about the agreement to get the money?

IMHO, it was a product of the two mindless and inept leaders from the both countries. The major difference is that one was impeached, whereas the other is still in power.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Christopher GlenToday  01:56 pm JST

"Japan conscripted ALL Japanese into labor forces and recruited Comfort Women"

Ah, you mean "sex slaves". While some signed up voluntarily, the vast majority were tricked or forced into it.

No I mean Comfort Women, which was the official title. Of course that title is not exactly accurate, as is "Sex Slaves" a term coined by the CW Crowd to incite emotional response, with total disregard for the fact that the CW were part of a military run prostitution system (same as Germany and France) and therefore on the military payroll, and it dilutes the real meaning of the term used to describe victims of Human Trafficking, an ongoing problem right now today. The only correct term is "Military Prostitutes" a term which accurately describes their status. The only real debate concerns how they got there, and there is no definitive categorization of the number who signed up voluntarily, were deceived by Korean middlemen, or were otherwise coerced or forced. The only thing that all "rational" historians have agreed on is that the CWs comprised a mix.

-2 ( +15 / -17 )

@sj

Even if there was a written official agreement signed by both countries just like 1965 treaty, no doubt S Korean government would ignore and revoke the agreement whatever. 1 billion yen should be back to Japan if the agreement is officially void, otherwise it seems like SK committed a "ore ore" fraud. Why SK do not soon? because it is still effective official agreement.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

SPRINGToday  12:36 pm JST

OssanAmerica

“The Comfort Women System existed for the purpose of preventing rape.”

it is still rape unless you are saying that they agreed to be a comfort women?

I hope not.

Some CWs volunteered, answered recruitment ads. Some were tricked, deceived by Koreans acting as recruitment agents, some were otherwise coerced as in the case of poor families with debts. The CWs were part of a military prostitution system on the military payroll, and raping them would bring severe consequences from the IJA. Real "rape" can be described like this:

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2019/jan/19/women-raped-by-korean-soldiers-during-vietnam-war-still-awaiting-apology

3 ( +15 / -12 )

They should grow up. Time to move on.

Stop bullying, repeating, & repeating again.

Won’t be getting any political and economic gains from around the World?

5 ( +14 / -9 )

SJToday  12:30 pm JST

@OssanAmerica

South Korea and Japan negotiated and signed an Agreement in 2015 that "Settled the Comfort Women Issue permanently". 

Signed? This is a common misinformation of naive Japanese people. It was an oral agreement without any signature, which means the agreement is legally void.

In other words, agreements and promises of the Government of the Republic of Korea has no credibility whatsoever. What a third rate country. Does the word "honor" exist in South Korea?

0 ( +15 / -15 )

Luca. Neo-Nazis are not a "fringe" group and need to be taken seriously. They have already infiltrated the German army and police and worryingly the special forces KSK. They are a big threat to German democracy and people need to wake up especially if the country goes into a Great Depression due to covid. Research "Day X". Europe is in danger. I am much more worried about Germany than Japan.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

The man statue of bowing on his knees was "Shinzo Abe"?  What he has to do with wartime comfort women?

The artist should make more specific and tells the reason why that man is responsible! But anyway, this is a very good work indeed! The Japanese colonial rule of South Korea and murdering the late Queen of Chosen dynasty was far worst than the destructions caused by Korean war!

-12 ( +0 / -12 )

Some CWs volunteered, answered recruitment ads. Some were tricked, deceived by Koreans acting as recruitment agents, some were otherwise coerced as in the case of poor families with debts. The CWs were part of a military prostitution system on the military payroll, and raping them would bring severe consequences from the IJA. 

Good to know...seems that is was all Koreans fault...the women either volunteered, were deceived by fellow Koreans and their own families, the honorable chaps in IJA never raped anyone anywhere because of the pure cherry blossom samurai spirit, and all that. Americans pushed poor Japan into attacking Pearl Harbor, Australians bombed Darwin themselves and Nanking is all a myth. J right wing enlightenment is just swell.

-5 ( +10 / -15 )

I've read about this in another paper.

Headline says statues sparked debate in South Korea.

No mention of it stoking anger in Japan

4 ( +5 / -1 )

In 2016, the unveiling of a statue in Sydney, Australia honouring so-called "comfort women" during WWII caused tension between the local South Korean and Japanese communities.

The 1.5-metre statue was imported from Korea and symbolises the hardships endured by tens of thousands of Korean women, who were forced into sexual servitude.

It was unveiled at Croydon Park in Sydney's west by a former comfort woman from South Korea, Won-Ok Gil, 89, who flew in for the ceremony.

Ms Gil was forced to work in a "comfort station" at 13 years of age and was raped hundreds of times by Japanese soldiers.

At the Sydney unveiling, she sat besides the peace monument and became too emotional to speak.

Won-Ok Gil was taken to Harbin, Manchuria, and brought to a comfort station in the winter of 1940 where she was repeatedly sexually assaulted by Japanese soldiers from the ages of thirteen to eighteen years old. During the years Won-Ok spent as a victim of military sexual slavery, she contracted syphilis, which formed tumors in her body, leading to four surgeries. Due to complications, doctors gave Won-Ok a hysterectomy which left her sterile. After the war, Won-Ok tried to go back home to North Korea, but when she got to the border, it was closed. Won-Ok to this day still has been unable to return to her home.

These statues serve to remind us of the importance of remembering the past and in doing so making sure sexual violence against females does not happen in the future. The issue of sexual violence in conflict remains with us till this day. No survivors of sexual violence should remain in the shadows. Those posters who flippantly say, "Get on with life etc." need to sit down with individuals such as Won-OK and hear their experiences.

-1 ( +13 / -14 )

OssanAmerica

“Some CWs volunteered, answered recruitment ads. Some were tricked, deceived by Koreans acting as recruitment agents, some were otherwise coerced as in the case of poor families with debts. The CWs were part of a military prostitution system on the military payroll, and raping them would bring severe consequences from the IJA.”

Volunteered women were mostly Japanese. Military prostitution is right term.

Most were forced and tricked. They were used as comfort women / sex slave which is rape.

prostitution is by choice rape is not.

-3 ( +12 / -15 )

So the standard Korean tactic of distracting the masses from the problems at home by directing the attention towards Japan.

S. Korea has had an increasing number of Wuhan-China virus cases, after all.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

When I first saw this picture, I recalled Hakone Open Air Museum where they display many sculptures and statues of the world at their spacious green garden. It would be nice if they could buy the statues from them and show to Japanese visitors.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

SPRINGToday  03:12 pm JST

OssanAmerica

Volunteered women were mostly Japanese. Military prostitution is right term.

Most were forced and tricked. They were used as comfort women / sex slave which is rape.

prostitution is by choice rape is not.

All women in any prostitution system are victims. You can not claim that those in Japan were not but those in Korea were. Many women also answered the recruitment ads run in newspapers in Korea. No numerical breakdown has ever been determined as to how many volunteered, were deceived, or sold off by their indebted families. The term “Rape” has a significant meaning to those who are against the crime of sexual violence against women, which you are bending to fit your argument as a political issue than one of human rights.

Yazidi survivor demands justice for women raped in Vietnam War

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-vietnam-war-rape/yazidi-survivor-demands-justice-for-women-raped-in-vietnam-war-idUSKCN1PA2YV

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

So the standard Korean tactic of distracting the masses from the problems at home by directing the attention towards Japan.

@Wesley - A swing and a miss of a comment there.

I think you will find the statue sits in a private garden of a private citizen, commissioned by an individual and sculpted by another individual.

I think you're confusing yourself with some statue the SK government commissioned?

0 ( +16 / -16 )

Statue in a private garden of some Korean nationalist is not the same as govt commissioned art. What gives Jgovt the right to demand interference about what a private foreign national puts in his garden in another country? Btw.." International courtesy " ..that's a good one Suga, how much international courtesy is Japan showing the hundreds of thousands of "international citizens who reside, work, have families etc in here but have been locked out of coming back in the last few months whilst retuning Japanese face no restrictions...that kind of " international courtesy"?

@marcelto - well said.

But it sure wound up the right wing nationalists like a pull string toy!

2 ( +17 / -15 )

This is gross. Koreans enjoying it. Stay away from them.

@vanities - Why the broad sweeping racist rhetoric?

I quote from the article:

But the statues at Kim's garden also drew criticism among some South Koreans, who described them as tacky or excessively provocative on social media.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

@OssanAmerica

In other words, agreements and promises of the Government of the Republic of Korea has no credibility whatsoever. What a third rate country. Does the word "honor" exist in South Korea?

That is a typical claim of naive Japanese brainwashed by the politicians and the media. Any international agreement between states must be approved by the parliament or the congress to be effective. Without it, all so-called agreements are legally void. The 'agreement' in 2015 is just a political rhetoric to deceive naive people like you. It was close to a press conference.

0 ( +15 / -15 )

Because what damage Japan did to Korea is objectively speaking, absolutely nothing compared to what other nations did to others during WWII. 

@Ossan - typical Japanese right wing rhetoric.

Bet you won't share that view if you were laying strapped on an operating drawing your last breath, after someone just performed a vivisection on you.

All news to you? Look up 'Unit 731' and see if you still want to keep that Rising Sun flag bandanna over your forehead, or that Rising Sun flag in your bedroom wall.

3 ( +18 / -15 )

@Ah so

So you making it sound like your own people as Korean men don’t do bad thing such as rape and assault Korean women, or even kill their own wives (Vietnamese) and much much more in your country?

@Cassidy Hu - I never said I was Korean (and I'm not). The fact that you jumped to three conclusion that I was says far more about you than you did about Korea.

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

OssanAmerica

“Yazidi survivor demands justice for women raped in Vietnam War”

first i never said japanese women weren’t the victims of war crime.

second, you keep bring it up on different subject to compare and justify what japan has done.

Yes Vietnamese women deserve justice. This is matter between korea and Vietnam.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

Again with the statues!

3 ( +13 / -10 )

S. Korea is not Israel. S. Korea is right next door to Japan has more reasons to keep historical issues open and fresh.

But the Israelis do commemorate the Holocaust. In fact, the whole world does. And Germany does not throw its toys out of the pram every time - it joins in the commemorations.

Israrel is 3000kms away from Germany. Distance matters, S. Korea has a much longer history with Japan compare that to Israel and Germany. Fact

Irrelevant. This is about the treatment of Jews in WW2. The biggest memorial to the Holocaust is Auswitz in Poland - the country neighbours Germany.

Germany involved in two world wars plus the holocaust have moved on. Normal country again, normal military again, leading EU.

Germany has moved on, whereas Japan hasn't. You seem to be confusing the perpetrator and victim.

S. Korea will always have political, historical, land, sea issues with Japan because of the distance.

And vice versa. But many countries live side-by-side satisfactorily. But as Japan has never come to terms with its crimes, it has poisoned the relationship.

1 ( +16 / -15 )

SPRINGToday  04:58 pm JST

OssanAmerica

“Yazidi survivor demands justice for women raped in Vietnam War”

first i never said japanese women weren’t the victims of war crime.

Yes you did. You said those in Japan volunteered, those in Korea were forced.

SPRINGToday  03:12 pm JST

OssanAmerica

Volunteered women were mostly Japanese. Military prostitution is right term.

Most were forced and tricked.

second, you keep bring it up on different subject to compare and justify what japan has done.

Yes Vietnamese women deserve justice. This is matter between korea and Vietnam.

Nobody is justifying anything. Prostitution in any form is a crime against women. And it is not a political issue. It is one of human rights. And the issues between South Korea and Vietnam exposes the sheer hypocrisy of South Korea's position on the CW issue towards Japan.

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