• Comfort Women
  • The truth of the Japanese Military "Comfort Women"

The truth of the Japanese Military "Comfort Women"

Who are the “comfort women”?

Who are the “comfort women”?

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“Comfort women” are women who were incarcerated in so-called “comfort stations” – military brothels -- built by the Japanese armed force throughout the Japanese empire and areas under its occupation, including China, Indonesia, Singapore and Papua New Guinea. These women were forced to give “sexual comfort” to the Japanese soldiers by having sexual intercourse with them.
The women, recruited from the areas colonized or occupied by Japan, consisted of Koreans, who made up the majority, Taiwanese, Chinese, Indonesian, East Timorese and Filipinos. The victims included some Dutch women and Japanese women as well. The number of “comfort women,” though unknown, is estimated to range from 40,000 to over 200,000.
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These women, mostly under age 20 and sexually inexperienced, were from rural and poor backgrounds. Many of them were deceived into sexual slavery by talks of factory works, nursing, or voluntary service. Deception and intimidation were often used. Many others were abducted. Procurement of the women was performed by brokers who had worked in close coordination with local police and military police.
The women, mostly under age 20 and sexually inexperienced, were of rural and poor background. Many of them were deceived into sexual slavery by talks of factory works, nursing, or voluntary service. Deception and intimidation were often used. Many others were abducted. Procurement of the women was performed by brokers who worked in close coordination with local police and military police.
The “comfort women” system came into full operation after the outbreak of the Sino-Japanese War in July 1937. The Japanese army established the so-called “comfort stations” throughout the war zone and was involved in their operation directly and indirectly until Japan’s defeat in August 1945.
After the war, the fact about the comfort women system remained unnoticed to the public for decades. Like other sex crimes, the systematic rape crime by the Japanese military marked the surviving victims with shame and forced them to keep their painful past as a secret. It was in 1991 when Kim Hak-Soon came out as the first former comfort woman to make a public testimony of her experience.
Kim Hak-soon (then 67) was the first comfort woman victim to publicly reveal herself at a press conference and file a suit against the Japanese government in 1991. She passed away in 1997.
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"Comfort stations" of the Japanese Military※ For more information to investigate: The Japanese military brothels map
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