Korean sex slaves of Japanese army, first video ever


This video from South Korea says about itself:

Footage of Korean women sexually enslaved by Japanese soldiers in WWII revealed for the first time

Japan’s sexual enslavement of Korean women during World War Two

More than just another unresolved issue that strains bilateral relations, there are survivors of the atrocity and their families who more than deserve apology and compensation.

However, Tokyo has been devoted to denying and burrying its wartime sins.

At long last crucial evidence that should aid efforts to corner Japan into acknowledging historic facts and facing reality has been found.
Lee Ji-won tells us more.

Women,… with faces full of fear,… are lined up against a wall.

A man, presumed to be a Chinese officer, talks to them.

This short 18 second video is of seven Korean women sexually enslaved by the Japanese soldiers in Yunnan province, southwest China, around the end of World War II.

It is the first-ever video footage of Korean victims that has been found. On Wednesday, Seoul city and Professor Chung Chin-sung of Seoul National University unveiled the video from 1944,… which had been stored in the National Archives and Records Administration of the United States for over 70 years.

Previously,… footage of Chinese comfort women had been found,… but there were only pictures and documents on the Korean comfort women.

But after the professor and his research team were certain that a video on the Korean victims existed, they spent two years searching for the footage,… and they finally found what they were looking for amongst hundreds of film reels last month.

The footage was taken by an American combat photographer just after the region was reclaimed from Japan by the Chinese. During World War II, an estimated 200-thousand women, mostly Koreans, were kidnapped and forced to become sex slaves for Japanese troops.

While an agreement between Korea and Japan was made by the previous Park Geun-hye administration in 2015,… where Japan financially compensated the victims with one billion yen, or about 8-point-9 million U.S. dollars, thousands of citizens and the surviving victims criticized and refused the deal as Tokyo claimed there was no evidence of the Japanese military forcing the enslavement of women.

But with Korea’s newly elected President Moon Jae-in calling for renegotiation of the deal,… the research team says that they hope the footage will work as a tool to open up such talks. “We hope the new findings will bring the public’s attention and interest on the matter,… so that when President Moon has his first bilateral talk with the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, at the G20 summit later this week, an atmosphere for renegotiation can be made.”

With only 38 Korean victims still alive,… the research team stressed their determination to uncover this video evidence of Japan’s sexual slavery so that there’s a chance for the issue to be resolved within their lifetimes.

Lee Ji-won, Arirang News.

South Korean Gwangju massacre, investigation at last


This 2013 video from South Korea is called Gwangju Massacre.

By James Tweedie:

South Korea: Moon vows to reopen probe into Gwanju massacre

Friday 19th May 2017

SOUTH KOREAN President Moon Jae In vowed yesterday to reopen the probe into a 1980 massacre of pro-democracy protesters.

Mr Moon made the pledge at an anniversary commemoration in Gwangju, where hundreds were killed in a crackdown by the military dictatorship.

He was the first president to attend the event since 2013, when his disgraced predecessor Park Geun Hye came in the first year of her presidency.

Chun Doo Hwan — the general who seized power months after the assassination of Ms Park’s father, dictator Park Chung Hee — was sentenced to death over the massacre in 1996 but pardoned the next year.

“The new government will invest greater effort into fully revealing the truth surrounding the May 18 democracy movement,” Mr Moon said.

“We will at any cost unveil the truth and responsibilities behind the shootings.”

Meanwhile MP and former prime minister Lee Hae Chan met Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Beijing yesterday.

Mr Lee is one of four envoys sent by Mr Moon to improve relations with the US, Japan, China and Russia.

Mr Wang urged Seoul to remove the US THAAD antiballistic missile system from its territory.

The system was deployed under the previous government on the pretext of North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests, but Beijing and Moscow say it is aimed at neutralising their own deterrents.

“We’re now at a crossroads in our relations,” Mr Wang told Mr Lee as he urged Seoul to “remove the obstacles” in the way of good relations between the neighbours.

An editorial in China’s Global Times yesterday — seen as the voice of the Communist Party — said: “Stopping the deployment of THAAD is the bottom line of China.”

It warned the deployment would “definitely intensify the nuclear arms race and security dilemmas on the Korean peninsula,” already in “deep chaos.”

New South Korean president corrects dictator’s daughter predecessor’s historical whitewash


This video series says about itself:

9 January 2012

On October 26, 1979, South Korean president and military dictator Park Chung-hee was assassinated by his intelligence chief Kim Jae-kyu. Many people had high hopes of democracy.

Background: After the government of the first South Korean President Rhee Seung-man toppled in the April Revolution of 1960, Park Chung-hee staged a military coup, after which he ruled South Korea for 18 years. The Yushin Constitution of 1972 guaranteed Park’s perpetual dictatorship by the election of the president [away] from the voters to an electoral college, alloting one third of the National Assembly seats to appointment by the president, giving the president authority to issue emergency decrees and suspend the Constitution, and giving the president authority to appoint all judges and dismiss the National Assembly. By the late 1970s, demonstrations against the Yushin system erupted throughout the country. When Park Chung-hee was assassinated on October 26, 1979, it seemed as if the spring would com early to Seoul.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

South Korea: Moon closes one chapter of Park’s horrid history

Saturday 13th May 2017

SOUTH KOREAN President Moon Jae In has reversed his predecessor’s decision to replace school history books with her official version.

In 2015 impeached president Park Geun Hye’s government proposed to outlaw textbooks that it claimed were too left-leaning and encouraged views sympathetic to North Korea.

Teachers protested that the new books whitewashed the bloodthirsty dictatorship of Ms Park’s father, Park Chung Hee, and amid strong resistance to the plan Korean Confederation of Trade Unions president Han Sang Gyun was jailed for five years, along with other leaders, for organising a march against the law.

MPs from Mr Moon’s Minjoo (Democratic) party said they would push for a parliamentary debate on the last government’s hosting of US Thaad anti-ballistic missiles, which has angered neighbour China.

And in the first sign of Mr Moon’s pledge to take on big business, the Transport Ministry ordered the recall of 240,000 Hyundai cars for defects exposed by a whistleblower.

Migratory birds in South Korea


This video says about itself:

Yubudo (Yubu) Island, Guem Estuary – A shorebird haven in the Yellow Sea

19 October 2016

The Geum Estuary in Seocheon County, South Korea is one of the most significant migratory shorebird stopover points in the Yellow Sea and the most significant in Korea. With the loss of the Saemangeum mudflats a small island (known as Yubu Island) has become a crucial refuge site and hosts close to 40,000 shorebirds and waterbirds each year including the Critically Endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper.

BirdLife International and BirdLife Australia are working together with Seocheon County Government, the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP) Secretariat and other stakeholders including local communities and NGOs, national government and international agencies to support and enable the long-term, participatory conservation of Geum Estuary. The Geum Estuary contains two Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs), a Ramsar site, and an EAAFP Flyway Network Site and the long-term conservation plan includes securing World Heritage Site status for the site (with Wadden Sea Secretariat staff advising), and supporting the development of nature based tourism.

See also here.