With every conflict in history, every war that is ever fought, there are scores of affected people that many of us may not know of, until later. The comfort women who were forced into prostitution by the Japanese military are people that fought their own personal war while World War II was in full swing. Although late, they are now getting the apologies they rightfully deserve.
The Japanese military took part in many activities during the war that they are not proud of. And Comfort women are steadily becoming one of those aspects they wish had never come out in the open. These women, of whom some were Japanese and others were simply found along the way, were forced to be there for the comfort of the military men.
They would be forced into sex slavery or whatever the soldier may want. These women were under the most treacherous and depressing circumstances that a woman could find herself in. Additionally, they were unable to afford a normal life and held against their wish.
The Start of Comfort Women
It is not clear as to when these comfort women were engaged in the military camps. However, those who have spoken out, tell of ways in which these camps were started:
- Women collected from enemies
- Some women volunteered
From historical reports from soldiers as well as the women involved in these times, comfort women were collected from areas in which the Japanese were visiting. There were some women who would volunteer to be prostitutes, in order to receive compensation.
However, the majority of these women were found in enemy territory, taken and then carted around with the Japanese military. Many women committed suicide rather than have to deal with inhuman treatment, while others dreamed of the day they could get out and let the world know just what they had been subjected to.
And when women did start coming forth, the Japanese and East Asia government had a lot to answer to.
Enter the Asian Women’s Fund
The government scrabbled for a way to make this right. And one part of making this right was the Asian Women’s Fund, which offered:
- Apologies from government
- Monetary support to victims
- Health care for victims
When the word was finally out about the existence of these comfort women, the government had no other option than to start making reprimands for the damage done. The Asian Women’s Fund, for instance, issued an official apology for the treatment of women during this time, while also announcing monetary support, health and wellbeing support to women who were considered to have been at the receiving end of the Japanese army.
This support was greatly appreciated a good number of those women. However, many other victims refused those initiatives, stating that this was not enough to make up for the damage done to them. Though most of these women are getting in their late ages, they are still using their time to speak out and encouraging women to fight back, against all such injustice that women have been forced into from time to time.