Stands that will resolve the conflict of the South Korean Comfort Women
After an extended period of standoff by the president of South Korea, Park Geun, at last, she accepted to meet the Prime Minister of Japan over the comfort women stories. Since she got to power in 2013, she had never seen eye to eye with Shinzo Abe, the Prime minister of Japan. Their first meeting was in early November 2015, and they promised to settle the matter before the end of the same year.
But the question is, what exactly is ailing the solution to the comfort women testimonies? Are there possibilities of putting the matter to rest anytime soon? Well, that comes with complex scenarios that have gone through a lot of deductive logic. At least, to fill the information gap.
Let’s look at the high possibilities of the end of the comfort women stories landing softly. The historical dispute has had a lot of influences from the minority who have clouded the decisions of the two leaders, Park and Abe. For instance, the spokesman of the ministry of foreign affairs made a statement to the government of Japan during the November meeting.
Cho June, the spokesman, claimed that the government of Japan had all the solutions to the comfort women testimonies and that it should take the sole stand to sort out. According to him, the government of Japan would only be undoing the things it did. They know how they began it, so it will be easier to end.
That is a stimulating conversation that Cho June made. However, it leaves a lot to be desired by both parties. In its logic, Japan would be admitting full-cost of responsibility for her soldiers. That would be a technical position since the government of Japan had not explicitly stated that its military was guilty behind the South Korean comfort women.
The good news about it is that Japan had an opportunity to come back on the table with a package of the proposal which would shade light on a perspective of engagement. Later, the following month, Japan made her overview of what she wanted from the bargain and what she would offer. We shall look at it shortly.
The melting of the hard-line decisions by Park Geun towards Japan lessened the stalemate. Initially, she had resisted the talk until Shinzo Abe admitted to particularly honor the fact that Japan was responsible for the abduction and mandatory entry of South Korean’s women into the brothel. That would be a tricky situation, why even today Japan has the fears of taking such a position.
Similar sentiments came from the comfort women testimonies advocacy, Ahn Sun, who swore to reject any offer that would come from the Japanese government on the following condition; If Japan does not admit to taking responsibility for her assault against the comfort women testimonies, and if she will not be specific to address a formal apology to the comfort women of South Korea.
The relationship of Ahn Sun and Park Geun sentiments all incline to one thing particularly and of course more from the government of Japan. They all need a formal apology and full recognition of the Korean comfort women as a case that resulted from the act of the imperial military of Japan. The two are likely to give an impression of what will accelerate healing in South Korea.
A month later the two parties met in Seuon and Japan made a statement that will likely be a game changer in the whole event. In her statement, Japan through the Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, desires to have a long-lasting resolve of the South Korean comfort women.
What Japan has at heart for the solution is never to have the burden of guilt transferred to her next generation. Such demands would not be welcomed. However, Japan still has a role to play sighting the claims of Ahn and Park and other advocacy groups in South Korea and Asian countries. Though Abe did not make a particular statement to the comfort women, he acknowledged their pain and the injuries they went through while in Japan.
Even before the 2015 agreement, Japan had made several apologies towards the comfort women stories and pledged support. For instance, in 1993, the comfort women testimonies carried out many demonstrations at the Japanese Embassy, Seuon. The government of Japan reiterated by accepting the existence of the comfort women testimonies.
Turning the vane back to the shortfalls of the agreement, some researchers and renowned personalities have added their voices on what can heal the historical dispute. One of them is Daniel Pinkston who is a visiting researcher at the conflict studies center.
According to Pinkston, the President of South Korea and the Prime Minister of Japan need to shelve the people surrounding them. He advises that the pull and push from the two sides will stagger the whole process and they may never get to the end. His opinion is that the two should sit and do the right thing.
It is through such kind of advice that the 2015 agreement came to play. The government of Japan has extended support of one billion Yen to the government of South Korea to establish a foundation for the comfort women stories. This amount is not in direct compensation scheme but to bring back the lives of the Korean comfort women.
In his plea, he says that they need to be resettled; their psychological issue and physical injuries. His expression is goodwill to end the South Korean comfort women in a mutual benefit.
The December 2015 agreement seems to bring a neutral level of cooperation between the two countries. The idea is to have South Korea compensated for the comfort women through the foundation and also to open bilateral and multilateral relations with other countries. Remember even the US had begun to get cold on South Korea demands sighting that they had to be specific on what she wanted from the government of Japan.
On the other hand, the cold relationship between South Korea and Japan was getting into Japan’s relationship with other Asian countries. For once, after the 2015 agreement, the Korean comfort women stories seem to have light at the end of the tunnel. What is remaining is the implementation of the process which will highly depend on the two leaders according to Daniel Pinkston.