Japan did the right thing. Hats off to the Japanese government.
4 ( +9 / -5 )
Some of the surviving comfort women in South Korea will never move on which is understandable. However, the international community is moving on, and it appears that the South Korea government is moving on as well. Once the Japanese government offers the apology with the one billion yen the world will overwhelmingly move on to other women. This is already happening with global media attention going to the comfort women in Taiwan and the Philippines. The Japanese government would be wise to deal with all of the surviving comfort women around the world and move on. I do not see Japan getting a permanent seat on the UN council until this issue is permanently resolved.
-3 ( +1 / -4 )
President Park’s statement warned that if “critics can’t accept the agreement and try to take the issue back to the beginning…there is little we can do further to help the survivors while they are alive”. Sometimes the hardest part of healing the wounds of the past is moving forward. NO deal is 100% perfect. I doubt Japan will hold back the funds because of a statue, and I think President Park is making it very clear to the South Korean people that the international community is about to move on to next cause.
11 ( +11 / -0 )
Yes, the statue can be moved but that does not mean that the South Korean government would allow it in front of the relocated embassy. Further, why move the statue unless the purpose is to antagonize the Japanese government? The statue is beautiful and sad at the same time. The statue has become a global symbol of the reality of sexual slavery during warfare. The statue is seen by many around the world as a symbol of courage, and it would be sad if it is used as a medium to divide moving forward.
0 ( +2 / -2 )
No deal is 100% perfect. The leaders in Japan and South Korea deserve a lot of credit for resolving this matter. No human being should expect the surviving women to forgive and forget, but PM Abe had the wisdom to realize that sometimes it is better to move on. If PM Abe can apologize for past governmental misdeeds then there is no excuse for other world leaders. The deal may not be perfect, but it is surely historic on a global scale.
3 ( +5 / -2 )
The deal is a win-win for everyone. Japan now has the moral authority to tell other nations like the Democratic Republic of the Congo about the consequences associated with allowing the systematic rape of women during warfare. The surviving comfort women in South Korea can now move on with their lives, and hopefully the actions of PM Abe will open the door to mutually beneficial discussions with North Korea over similar issues. Anything is possible if leaders truly want peace.
1 ( +3 / -2 )
Clear away obstacles hindering close bilateral ties. Does this mean an agreement is near on the comfort wives issue?
1 ( +1 / -0 )
Yukio Okamoto is an impressive leader. Things just don't happen in this manner. I would not be surprise if the Japanese government declares a resolution to the comfort wives situation as well in a matter of weeks. Mr. Okamoto words are powerful because he is telling many different leaders in the region in a very soft tone that it is maybe time to resolve these painful historical issues and move on. Mr. Yukio Okamoto is a very honorable man.
0 ( +1 / -1 )
Some surviving South Korean comfort wives have also sued the SK government for forcing them into prostitution with United States military personnel. Both South Korea and Japan should seek to reconcile past historical events and bring closure to the comfort wives issues.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
No nation should want to be associated with sex slavery. The surviving comfort women have the right to ask the Japanese government to apologize and make repair, and the Japanese government has the right to ask that this matter be brought to a conclusion if a settlement is provided. A resolution may be close at hand because I doubt the Japanese government and the surviving women want to continue to have this issue drag out in front of the global media. Documents alleging the Japanese government sanctioned military brothels does not look good even in a time of war.
4 ( +9 / -5 )
Reconciliation is the way forward. Yes, the handful of surviving women from other nations will probably come forward as well, but it time to close this dark chapter from 70 years ago.
0 ( +3 / -3 )
All around the world people are demanding reconciliation for past historical events and the comfort wives matter is a major issue for people all around the world. My humble suggestion is maybe the solution is not with the governments, but with the surviving comfort women and the living WW2 Japanese soldiers. Hopefully, a venue can be established where both the women and the soldiers can meet and talk about what happened from their perspectives (if such a meeting has not happened already). Such a meeting would be historic and Mr. Kano viewpoint is right. When governments start whitewashing the past people all around the world begin to look at that particular nation differently.
This is one of the reasons why the British government recently apologized to Kenyans who were tortured in the 1950s. The British government agreed to pay 20 million dollars to the 5,000 plus victims. This will equal out to about $5,000 dollars for each victim. Many of the Kenyans who were tortured stated that their struggle was not about acquiring money, but instead their struggle for reconciliation was about the world knowing the truth about what happened to them during the 1950s.
3 ( +3 / -0 )
Kawano I don’t understand what is wrong with the Japanese government talking directly with the surviving South Korean comfort women. Clearly, the issue is not settled, and talking to the women directly is an honorable thing to do. I agree that compensation to the South Korean government is highly inappropriate (since money was paid before), but by Japan not addressing the concerns of the surviving women will only make the issue bigger globally. The Japanese government should invite the SK women to Japan and speak to them privately. I think that many people around the world would see such a meeting as step in the right direction.
3 ( +4 / -1 )
The Japanese government in my opinion should just meet with the surviving SK comfort women, and start the process of healing. All around the world young people have begun to mobilize to address historical atrocities and at the same time promote global peace and reconciliation. Nations and territories from Denmark and the United States Virgin Islands, Britain and Kenya, Germany and Namibia, France and Haiti, and the United States of America and Guam are dealing with similar issues. However, I believe that in the end Japan will do right by these surviving women and set a standard that others will follow.
0 ( +2 / -2 )
That is why the Japanese government should speak to the surviving comfort women directly and bypass the SK government. Treaties do not wipe away the pain, and speaking directly to the surviving women is just the right thing to do. The saying is so true that the final steps tend to be the hardest. One hundred years from now the comfort wives issue will still be on the table even after all the women have pass if it is not dealt with now, so why not let them tell their stories and deal with all outstanding issues (compensation). I believe that the Japanese officials will deal with this issue and save face at the same time because developing closer military and financial ties with SK is way more important at the present moment.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
Japan is such an inspirational nation to many of us around the world because of the Japanese government commitment to the area of reconciliation, and that is why I do not understand why the Japanese government would not hold talks on compensation for the use of Korean women as military sex slaves during World War II. I humbly believe that the Japanese government should consider talking directly to the surviving South Korean women about this issue and not get into a back and forth with South Korean government officials. Japanese officials have spoken directly to former POWs from various countries and some Japanese officials have even asked for forgiveness for the mistakes of the past.
Over the years, when I have spoken at the United Nations headquarters in New York about global reconciliation between nations, I speak about the amazing progress that Japan has and is making in bringing about peace in the region. The governments and people of Japan and South Korea seem to be so close to real peace, and I hope that the sex slave issue can be discussed and resolved in the near future.
-4 ( +1 / -5 )
Rmistric I totally understand the concerns of those who say that food aid should not be disburse to the military and political leadership of NK. However, that is why you have organizations such as the UN World Food Program, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). I also believe that a limited amount of aid workers are on the ground in NK from organizations such as Mercy Corp. Any aid effort of this magnitude should be organized through the UN, and I hope that the NK government would see the benefits of asking for the assistance if they have not already. However, I still strongly believe that no nation should use food as a bargaining tool. This is inhumane and speaks poorly of our collective humanity. Having access to safe, healthy, nutritious food should be a right guaranteed to ALL human beings.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
There are numerous international organizations that can verify if the food is getting to the NK people. There are a lot of bad leaders and governments around the world, but why should children starve to death because of the actions or inactions of their leaders. What is the international community saying let things get so bad in NK that the NK children will take up arms and topple the government? Food should NEVER be used a bargaining tool. Food should be provided to all human beings regardless of the circumstances.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
Former Prime Minister Kan set such a high standard for other leaders around thw world to follow. I hope that Prime Minister Noda will have the same courage to sit down with the surviving South Korea comfort wives and reconcile and heal the wounds of the past.
3 ( +6 / -3 )
You are right that too often stronger nations impose their will on weaker nations, but that is why we (who care) should do our part to bring about healing and reconciliation. Maybe I am living on Mars or Venus, but I do believe that reconciliation between the people of Tibet and China is one way forward.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
The people of China and Tibet need to embrace reconciliation. The fact that several Tibetan monks have self-immolated themselves in order to be heard is sad. The Chinese government might not receive international criticism because of the current global economic situation, but eventually the cries of the Tibetan people will be heard. If Japan and South Korea can work together to heal the wounds of the past, so can China and Tibet.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
The nation of Denmark is next in line to chair the EU, and with the frictions that exist between Denmark and the other EU nations this could turn out to be a very dangerous ride.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
Every nation (whether rich or poor) will have to deal with the issue of immigration over the next fifty years. Immigration and multiculturalism are difficult issues to discuss, but using violence to promote an ideology is never acceptable.
2 ( +3 / -1 )
Some people want to see a world divide, but many of see a world united. May the Lord bless the people of Norway.
-1 ( +3 / -4 )
China is beginning to understand that making peace with your neighbors is better than fighting with them, and the USA is beginning to understand that an eventual economic partnership between Japan, South Korea, China, and North Korea is maybe only two decades away. An economic partnership between these nations would be one of the most powerful on the planet.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
The day is fast approaching when the USA and Japan will need to sit down and truly seek reconciliation surrounding the events of WWII. The killing of innocent people on both sides was wrong, and hopefully our humanity will never have to face another global war.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )