Japan has been warned. Recently, President Park Geun-hye of South Korea cautioned the Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe that the country’s isolation was inevitably imminent. This precautionary message came as a result of Japan reviewing it’s statements regarding the sex slaves used during wartime. On Friday reports surface from Tokyo that they were planning on reviewing the evidence in which they had apologized to thousands of survivors who had been confined within their army brothels. In her speech, Mrs. Parks implored Japan to accept both “truth and reconciliation.”
President Parks precautionary message was addressed in her speech that coincidentally corresponded with the 1919 anniversary of South Korean rebellion against colonial rule from Japan. In her nationally televised speech, President Parks issued Shinzo Abe stern criticism when she noted, “The character of real courage is not found in denying one’s past but in looking at the history as it had been and educating the growing generations of the correct history.The more that one denies it’s past, the more wretched and isolated it becomes. It is in the testimony of survivors that historical truths can be found.” The President of South Korea then went on to caution Japan of it’s impending isolation when she stated, “By turning a deaf ear to the testimonies of the wartime sex slaves and sweeping the matter away for political gains Japan will only bring isolation upon itself.”
The harsh assessment did not end there however, Mrs. Parks then asked Japan to look at German as in example in the ability to apologize for wartime records, and asked them to do the same. Mrs Parks further elaborated on the matter when she noted, “We hope that Japan can liberate itself from it’s denial of it’s own history.” President Park Geun-hye then went on to say, “I hope that these two countries can make further progression towards an era of prosperity, cooperation, and peace.”
In response, several Japanese conservatives made claims that the women who are euphemistically known in South Korea as “comfort women” were essentially prostitutes, however these accusations are vehemently disregarded by the women, and Japan’s surrounding neighbors.
On the same day that Korea cautioned Japan of its isolation with Mrs. Parks’s speech, the History Museum located in Seoul erected a new display in which many different artifacts such as comics and journals belonging to the surviving comfort women. According to sources in South Korea, this is evidence enough to substantiate Japan’s involvement in the sex trade.
Citizens of South Korea further reiterated the cautioned message of Japan’s impending isolation by staging a large anti-Japan protest. On the same day, hundreds of Korean’s flooded the location of the Japanese Embassy in an attempt to condemn the Japanese government. Chants of, “We want an apology, stop perverting history,” filled the streets of the surrounding location. Protest leader Park Chan-sung was quoted saying, “The South Korean citizens and the International Community greatly denounce the Japanese government for its wartime monstrosities, perversion of history, and its inaccurate claim over the Dodko.” According to historians, more than 200,000 women were taken from China, Korea, and Indonesia, and forced to become sex slaves for the Japanese military brothel.
In response to the stern message issued from South Korea, the former Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama cautioned Japanese officials against making any revisions upon their review.
By Aaron Weis