“But the fact is, there was no evidence to prove there was coercion as initially suggested.” – Abe Shinzo
‘New proof’ of Japan sex slaves
By Chris Hogg
BBC News, Tokyo
Reports from Japan say documents have been found that suggest the Japanese authorities forced women to work as sex slaves during World War II. They come from the Dutch government archives and include the testimony of a 27-year-old Dutch woman from May 1946.
The Kyodo news agency says the documents show women were coerced into prostitution in occupied Indonesia.
PM Shinzo Abe had claimed there was no evidence of Japanese officials forcing women into prostitution.
The documents are reported to have been found by a Japanese journalist investigating Japan’s wartime crimes in Asia.
The Dutch woman’s testimony says she had her clothes ripped off her by Japanese military police.
She says she was taken to a brothel and forced to work as a prostitute, despite her efforts to resist.
That testimony, it is claimed, was submitted to the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal as evidence of forced mass prostitution in Magelang, in what is now Central Java, in 1944.
Other documents are said to include further allegations that the Japanese forced women into prostitution.
Earlier this year Prime Minister Abe said that investigations had failed to find any documentary evidence that the Japanese authorities in wartime had issued orders to soldiers to coerce women into sex slavery.
He said though that he stood by a Japanese government apology to the women, known in Japan as “comfort women”.
The journalist who found these documents says they contradict the prime minister’s denial that the authorities were directly involved in coercion.
The Japanese Foreign Ministry says it is aware of his claims but has not seen the documents so cannot comment on what they might contain.
It says the Japanese government has investigated its wartime activities in Indonesia thoroughly and acknowledges and apologises for the country’s wartime use of sex slaves.
Story from BBC NEWS:
Well it looks like Shinzo-kun is going to have to eat his words with this rediscovered pieces of information. It’s interesting that independent Japanese journalists are the ones who are looking for the facts while at the same time framing the LDP-ruled government as a bunch of assholes for the world to see. While past governments have apologised for these crimes and unpleasantness, their successors keep bringing up the past by making, to be frank, retarded remarks that bring the wrong attention to them.
Japan is in the stages of clawing their way out of the “Lost Decade” marred by rampant corruption, economic recession, moral decay, and limited opportunities. The people and businesses do not need their government to spew crap in their name in a way that makes it unsafe for them to travel abroad or hinder their overseas business opportunities. Politics and economics are tied together to a large extent and the Asia-Pacific region is now increasingly interdependent with each other. No one needs to have stupidity translate into lost economic gains or instability that would turn away investors.
Here are some risks we will run into when investing in Japanese securities:
Reliance on Exports Risk. The economy is heavily dependent on international trade and has been adversely affected by trade tariffs, other protectionist measures and rising commodity prices. Japanese economic growth has been dependent on the U.S. and Chinese economies, with trade increasing with China in recent years.
Structural Risks. Japan may be subject to risks relating to political, economic, and labor risks. Any of these risks, individually or in the aggregate, can impact an investment made in Japan.
n Political Risk. Historically, Japan has had unpredictable national politics and may have the possibility of frequent turnover in the future. Future political developments may lead to changes in policy that might adversely affect the Fund’s investments.
n Economic Risk. The Japanese economy faces several concerns, including a financial system with large levels of nonperforming loans; over-leveraged corporate balance sheets; extensive cross-ownership by major corporations; a changing corporate governance structure; and large government deficits. These issues may cause a slowdown in the growth of the Japanese economy.
n Currency Risk. The Japanese yen has fluctuated widely at times and any increase in its value, due to the dependence of exports, may cause a fall off in exports that could weaken the economy.
n Labor Risk. Japan has an aging workforce. It is a labor market undergoing fundamental structural changes, as traditional lifetime employment clashes with the need for increased labor mobility, which may adversely affect Japan’s economic competitiveness.
Geographic Risk. In addition, Japan is located in a part of the world prone to natural disasters, such as earthquakes, volcanoes or tsunamis. Any such event could cause a negative impact to the Japanese economy.
Security Risk. Japan’s relations with its neighbors, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia among others, have at times been strained due to territorial disputes, historical animosities or defense concerns. Most recently, the Japanese government has shown concern of the increased nuclear and military activity by North Korea. Strained relations may cause uncertainty in the Japanese markets and affect the overall Japanese economy in times of crisis.
A bulk of the risk involving politics and security can be eliminated if Shinzo-kun stays the course with the help from the Chinese leadership, who are now obligated to keep him and his government from acting naturally stupid. And yes, that list of risks is lifted from iShare MSCI Japan Index Fund (EWJ)’s prospectus, which has significant returns and high volatility. Why can’t the LDP and their government institutions just shut up and not give the region an excuse to give their entire country shit?