Friday, January 8, 2016

Agreement on the “comfort women” issue Not a warning against future mistakes

On December 28th, the Japanese and South Korean governments are reported to have reached an agreement on the “comfort women” issue. The news says the agreement is “final and irreversible”. But as a result of this settlement, there will be less chance that  the “comfort women” issue will be taken up in  history text books. I fear that it is going to be more difficult to teach historical facts to the younger generation.  The agreement talks about an apology, the Japanese government’s payment of 1 billion Yen to a fund to help the surviving women, and the removal of the statue in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul. But it doesn’t say anything about how to teach the issue in Japanese schools, an important issue to the former “comfort women”. The Korean government seems to have taken the side of the Japanese and US governments and not that of the victims. (YK)
Photo: Asahi Newspaper December 29th issue reporting the agreement

「『慰安婦問題』日韓合意」が大きく報じられている年末、「前事不忘 后事之師」(過去の経験を忘れないで将来の戒めとする)からすれば、「不可逆的解決」=「蒸し返さない」というまったく許せない安倍と米国の戦略に腹が立つばかりです。これで、教科書に「慰安婦問題」が掲載される可能性はさらに小さくなったといえそうです。歴史事実を子どもや若い世代に伝えることがさらに困難になるという危機感でいっぱいです。新聞・マスコミは、謝罪内容や10億円の拠出(賠償ではない)や少女像の撤去問題は書くが、元「慰安婦」らが訴えていた日本の教育で子どもにどう教えていくかについては、全く抜け落ちている。韓国政府も「蒸し返さない」の論理に負けたのか。というより韓国政府も真に被害者側に寄り添わず、日米政府に寄り添ったという方が正しいようだ。(YK

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