yyj72 comments

Posted in: Jihadists behead British aid worker; battle for Kurdish town See in context

From a Machiavellian standpoint, the silver lining in all this is that now these extremists neanderthals are coalescing into one easily identifiable and simple to contain territory of little strategic value. Now all we need to do is carefully calibrate the level military engagement enough to keep them coming, like moths to a bug zapper. Those with our passports will have them invalidated and they'll be stuck there, no longer lurking about in your local mosque or brooding with their unemployed friends at the neighbourhood sheesha bar. You chaps want to return to living in the Middle Ages? Be our guests.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Diet rocked by dispute over justice minister's red scarf See in context

Where was the Speaker of the Upper House in all this? It's his job to enforce the rules. He should have simply told her to remove it and the matter would have been over with in five minutes.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

That should have concluded everything and bring back harmony.

That is for the victims to decide.

Look, there are templates for this kind of truth and reconciliation process. It isn't easy, but it's not rocket science either. South Africa's is the most famous, but there are hundreds of others, big and small, and none of them (at least not the successful ones) are rooted in a closed process negotiated over by lawyers, diplomats and historians in a hybrid legal-academic exercise whose results are then bequeathed upon the masses from their social betters. That kind of process ignores the human factor. It treats the suffering as a side issue instead of the core one. That is why the deal struck in 1965 is unsatisfactory to those for whom the Japanese military brothel system is a deeply personal issue. That is why they continue to ask for more. No one has argued that South Korea's government has no role in this - of course it does! But if a reconciliation is to truly happen, it is up to the victimizing party, the Government of Japan, to lead by example. South Africa today is a widely-admired country for its courage and honesty with its troubled past. Japan could reap the same rewards if it wanted to.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

It just doesn't cut it, boys. And taking an overly legalistic approach, negotiating hard over every detail, only adds to the misery and perceived lack of sincerity. It's truly shameful behaviour and brings dishonour to the great nation of Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

sfjp330: your posts indicate that you seem to regard this as some kind of simple court case, with plaintiffs and defendants arguing over who is at fault. You have fallen victim to one the oldest tricks that lawyers use: confuse the issue, drag it out, and quibble over points of procedure in order to make the process so excruciatingly cumbersome that the parties forget what they were after in the first place. The lawyers walk away rich, and everyone else is still miserable and unsatisfied. All the women want, and deserve, is a full and unequivocal apology from the Government of Japan in the form of a Diet resolution. They were abused the Government of Japan, and so were the soldiers who had sex with them. All parties in this issue want and need to wash their souls clean. If for no other reason, on a humanitarian basis, it should be done.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Security tight on eve of Tiananmen anniversary See in context

The world will not forget this dark episode. And the Party's repression of it shows they have not forgotten it either and still fear what it means. To quote from an excellent article on this (link below):

If they truly believed that "the Chinese people" approved of their killings, they would throw Tiananmen Square open every June 4 and watch the masses swarm in to denounce the counterrevolutionaries. That they do the opposite is eloquent testimony about what they really know.

https://www.chinafile.com/Specter-June-Fourth

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Documents show Japan complicit in WWII sex slavery: activists See in context

Can you imagine being one of the victims caught up in this horrible thing? A peasant girl from a poor family, no education or ties to people powerful enough to save you. Stuck between starvation or offering up your body to dozens of sweaty, dirty, violent men, day after day. Praying to yourself each time one of them grunts and rolls off of you that this one doesn't have syphillis. After, you clean your sore, tired genitals, wondering if they still work or are permanently damaged. Once or twice a year, maybe more, you get an abortion from the local doctor, a man who cares little if his operation is sanitary or damages you. Knowing that you will never escape this. No one will marry you now. No one cares. You are just meat.

Or what of the men? Boys, really. Far from home, stripped of your identity, bullied and threatened into performing unspeakable acts of violence and cruelty on foreigners in the name of powerful people you don't know and an Emperor you've never seen. Terrified at every turn, of the enemy, of disease, of hunger, of your superiors. Suffering from what we know today as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Climbing onto a young girl, poor like you, probably from a similar village. You go to the brothel hoping for kind of relief from the daily horror of soldiering, only to find that her eyes are just as dead as those of the corpses on the battlefield. You recoil at the smell your mates' body odour in her clothes and hair - it makes you think of the friends you've seen killed before your eyes. Too drunk to think, a few thrusts, and it's gone. Nothing more than a primal teenage urge. You recoil in disgust and shame. What would okaasan think if she saw me now? Both you and this girl, trapped in this world of suffering and filth. You wander off to drink more and try to forget. But you cannot. Not ever.

The Diet needs to make a statement of apology. For truth and reconciliation. To ease the suffering of ALL of those caught up in that misguided and cruel system of government-sponsored human degradation.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Posted in: Documents show Japan complicit in WWII sex slavery: activists See in context

JoeBigs: if you make the claim, the onus is on you to provide the evidence to support it, not on the audience to disprove it. That is a basic tenet of argumentation. You can even take a university course on this if you need to brush up.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

CH3CHO: The term "binding" refers to budgetary and lawmaking implications, neither of which are relevant when it comes to a statement of apology. What matters to the victims is the emotional content of the statement and that it come from ultimate expression of the Japanese polity, the Diet, which represents the entirety of the country of Japan, its Government and its people.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Documents show Japan complicit in WWII sex slavery: activists See in context

JoeBigs, do you have any evidence to prove this absurd claim?

Comfort Women wasn't and issue for the first Park President because he wanted money. Now, it's an issue for the second Park President because she needs money to pay for the giant carrot trap known as reunification (emphasis mine).

That is patently ridiculous.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Posted in: Documents show Japan complicit in WWII sex slavery: activists See in context

Colin Wilson: A statement of apology by a Prime Minister is only a personal statement or one on behalf of his party. Although there have been many of these issued related to WWII and/or the comfort women, as listed on the Wikipedia page you have referred to above, there has NEVER been an apology from the ENTIRE Diet of Japan on the comfort women issue specifically, and therefore NO apology from the Government (with a capital "G") of Japan. I'm sorry for being pedantic, but when it comes to parliamentary procedure, these distinctions are important. An apology from just a PM, however sincere, is only his own, not the country's.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Posted in: Megumi Yokota: Symbol of N Korean abduction issue See in context

The Kim Family Regime needs to go.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Documents show Japan complicit in WWII sex slavery: activists See in context

Pasting my comment from another article on the same subject:

The issue is the military brothel system itself. Questions about whether the women in it were coerced or volunteers, who did the pimping and procurement, who used the brothels, whether prostitution is rape or not, whether they were "sex slaves" or not -- these are not the main issue. They are related issues, true, and worth discussing, but we should not let them distract us from the central issue, which is: the Ministry of Defence of the Imperial Government of Japan established and ran, both directly and/or at arms length, a formal system of brothels for its soldiers in the field that by nearly all accounts was brutal and inhumane for these women. This is the reprehensible Government of Japan policy for which an apology from the Diet is still missing.

I hope this elevates the discussion, so we can begin talking about the fundamental human rights issue that is at the heart of the matter, instead of quibbling about the particulars.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

CH3CHO: I'm going to assume you missed my earlier post, so I'll paste it here:

Diet members are fully aware of the legal and political difference between a PM's personal apology and one issued by the entire Diet, and are not incapable of issuing the latter:

June 9, 1995: House of Representatives, National Diet of Japan passed a resolution stating: "On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II, this House offers its sincere condolences to those who fell in action and victims of wars and similar actions all over the world. Solemnly reflecting upon many instances of colonial rule and acts of aggression in the modern history of the world, and recognizing that Japan carried out those acts in the past, inflicting pain and suffering upon the peoples of other countries, especially in Asia, the Members of this House express a sense of deep remorse"

This is taken from the Wikipedia list of apologies. It is an example of a fully-endorsed Government of Japan statement in the true sense of the meaning. None like this has ever been issued to the comfort women, and that is why they and their supporters continue to pressure Japan.

As you can see, the Diet does have the power to apologize on behalf of the country. In fact, it is the only government body which has this power, and the above statement on World War II is an example of one.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

The issue is the military brothel system itself. Questions about whether the women in it were coerced or volunteers, who did the pimping and procurement, who used the brothels, whether prostitution is rape or not, whether they were "sex slaves" or not -- these are not the main issue. They are related issues, true, and worth discussing, but we should not let them distract us from the central issue, which is: the Ministry of Defence of the Imperial Government of Japan established and ran, both directly and/or at arms length, a formal system of brothels for its soldiers in the field that by nearly all accounts was brutal and inhumane for these women. This is the reprehensible Government of Japan policy for which an apology from the Diet is still missing.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

Pasting my earlier post for Mirai's education:

A statement of apology by a Prime Minister is only a personal statement or one on behalf of his party. Although there have been many of these issued related to the comfort women, as listed on the Wikipedia page some have referred to above, there has NEVER been an apology from the ENTIRE Diet of Japan on the comfort women issue specifically, and therefore NO apology from the Government (with a capital "G") of Japan. I'm sorry for being pedantic, but when it comes to parliamentary procedure, these distinctions are important. An apology from just a PM, however sincere, is only his own, not the country's.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

Because human rights are universal, anyone can, and should, express an opinion about them. It is up to the people of Japan and their Government to decide whether or not the Diet should issue an apology for the military brothel system, yes. But this does not mean that non-Japanese cannot have an opinion about it. A Japanese person has the right to express outrage over the thousands of missing and murdered aboriginal women in Canada, for example. But waiting around for others to issue apologies for their own past wrongs before you apologize for your own is neither a mature or inspiring choice.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

Diet members are fully aware of the legal and political difference between a PM's personal apology and one issued by the entire Diet, and are not incapable of issuing the latter:

June 9, 1995: House of Representatives, National Diet of Japan passed a resolution stating: "On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II, this House offers its sincere condolences to those who fell in action and victims of wars and similar actions all over the world. Solemnly reflecting upon many instances of colonial rule and acts of aggression in the modern history of the world, and recognizing that Japan carried out those acts in the past, inflicting pain and suffering upon the peoples of other countries, especially in Asia, the Members of this House express a sense of deep remorse"

This is taken from the Wikipedia list of apologies. It is an example of a fully-endorsed Government of Japan statement in the true sense of the meaning. None like this has ever been issued to the comfort women, and that is why they and their supporters continue to pressure Japan. Those women want one. They deserve one for their suffering. And it has nothing to do with money or "leverage" (whatever that means). Mr. Abe likes to walk tall. He should man up and get the Diet to rally behind a proper apology. Show some true courage and reap the respect he would earn for doing so. He would be a much more formidable leader for it.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

A statement of apology by a Prime Minister is only a personal statement or one on behalf of his party. Although there have been many of these issued related to the comfort women, as listed on the Wikipedia page some have referred to above, there has NEVER been an apology from the ENTIRE Diet of Japan on the comfort women issue specifically, and therefore NO apology from the Government (with a capital "G") of Japan. I'm sorry for being pedantic, but when it comes to parliamentary procedure, these distinctions are important. An apology from just a PM, however sincere, is only his own, not the country's.

1 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

The situation calls for a statement of apology from the full membership of the Diet, with government funds for compensation. Then the case would be closed and everyone could move on. It's only because this hasn't happened yet that this issue continues to linger and cause a great disturbance in the Force.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Posted in: 6 former 'comfort women' demand apology from Japan See in context

It has to be an apology from the entire Diet, not just a Prime Minister or governing party. Otherwise, it is not a full and unequivocal expression of remorse by the government. That would end the controversy and begin the healing process, not just the comfort women, but for Japan and its international reputation as well. Japan could take many similar statements to draw on as examples, such as one from Canada:

In September 1988, the Government of Canada formally apologized in the House of Commons and offered compensation for wrongful incarceration, seizure of property and the disenfranchisement of Japanese Canadians during WW II.

"I know that I speak for Members on all sides of the House today in offering to Japanese Canadians the formal and sincere apology of this Parliament for those past injustices against them, against their families, and against their heritage, and our solemn commitment and undertaking to Canadians of every origin that such violations will never again in this country be countenanced or repeated."

Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's remarks to the House of Commons, September 22, 1988

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

Posted in: 80% of Japanese women report being hit on by strangers See in context

World's most effective pick-up line: "Hello, my name is ... Nice to meet you." FACT!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Airline complaints: Which bothers you the most? See in context

I fly a lot, and for me its the lost luggage, because it's the one with the greatest number of knock-on effects. The others are annoying but manageable. With lost luggage, you're dealing with a whole bundle of new problems once you get off the plane: you're over or under-dresseed for the new climate at your destination, have to go shopping for new clothes instead of whatever the purpose of your trip was, have to wait around for the bags to be delivered, etc. It basically screws up a lot of plans.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Why do so few young Japanese want to work overseas? See in context

Makes sense. Compared to Japan, every other place is dirtier, most places are more dangerous, and a great many are less healthy. Add to that the falling birthrate and the result that a growing number of grandparents now have only one grandchild, and the pull of staying home becomes ever stronger. An overseas posting for a typical salaryman these days is to China, India, the Middle East or Africa, each of which entail a great deal of hardship. Japanese companies in North America and Europe now have mostly local employees.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Captain was not at helm of capsized S Korean ferry See in context

It's a pity the teachers supervising the field trip were not more proactive about getting their kids off the boat. I know they have to follow instructions from the crew, but at some point they must have realized the danger.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe to push security agenda next year with fresh urgency See in context

This is all just political hype to keep the LDP in power. Give the sheeple something to rally around, and you've got their votes. Nothing more.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan considers expanding its air zone See in context

A change in ownership of real estate from private to public hands has no bearing on a state's territorial sovereignty. China knows this. It used Ishihara's move to buy the islands, and the Japanese government's eventual purchase of them, as a convenient pretext to feign outrage, take further steps to bolster their claim to administrative control of the islands, and ratchet up tensions as a consequence. Anyone who can't see that China's long term strategy is to chip away at Japan's control and absorb the islands is blind. Time to draw the line.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Problems mount for White House in push for TPP deal See in context

Let's get the TPP done before another regional trade block takes shape. I want to live in a region where the US, Australia, NZ, Japan and other advanced economies with the rule of law, intellectual property protection and independent judiciaries shape the economic norms, not the corrupt sons of authoritarian regimes.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Is Japan really racist? See in context

The secret is to not allow the "us" and "them" perspective and other over-generalizations to form the foundation of the discussion. Whenever someone starts off by saying "Nihonjin wa..." or "Nihon de wa...", I shut them off right there and force them to be more specific, to talk about specific individuals and places, not broad stroke statements. Force them to enunciate their thoughts clearly, without laziness. Eventually they come to realize that talking about entire groups of people in one fell swoop is as silly and vague as talking about "the weather in Canada" or "food in Europe".

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: 10 things Japan gets awesomely right See in context

The customer service experience in Japan is good IF you follow the script. Try asking for something exceptional, out-of-the-ordinary or unforeseen, and you you will be met with little more than a sucking of teeth sound and much consternation. Ad hoc is not on.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

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