Speech at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan on July 9th, 2014

Yumiko Yamamoto: Appeals to the UN, “Comfort Women were Not Sex Slaves”

Speech at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan on July 9th, 2014
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Hello Everyone! I am very pleased to meet all of you here.

Before I begin my presentation on our plan to visit the United Nations, I would like to express our great appreciation to the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan for accepting me to have a presentation here.

Secondly, by taking this opportunity, let me state some important points.

The notice of my presentation uploaded to the website of the FCCJ says,
“They are annoyed that the term is being used widely these days to depict sex slaves during Japan’s invasion of mainland Asia in 1930s and early 1940s.”

I strongly oppose this sentence.

“We are annoyed by the term “sex slaves” that is being used widely these days to mean comfort women during Japan’s advancement to mainland Asia in 1930s and early 1940s.”

It also says,
“Japanese conservatives and nationalist groups are also disturbed by the 1996 Coomaraswamy report of the UN Commission on Human Rights”.

I hope all of the people who are here today understand that we are not nationalists but patriots.
We don’t discriminate against any particular people.
We are the people who love Japan very much, period.

Now, let me start my presentation.

I am Yumiko Yamamoto, President of the Japanese Women for Justice and Peace also known as Nadeshiko Action.

Nadeshiko Action has many Japanese women members who have joined the group voluntarily in order to STOP THE PROPAGANDA LIES that Comfort Women are Sex Slaves.

Here I want all of you to understand that we never denied that comfort women existed.
What we don’t like is that comfort women are misunderstood as sex slaves.

We have been voicing our opinions to protest to the resolutions of condemning Japan on the comfort women issue and building the comfort women memorials outside Japan in addition to contacting those responsible in building the comfort women memorials.

I have received many e-mail messages from Japanese mother who live in the United States.
Let me read a part of one of the messages which I received from a Japanese mother who lives in Glendale California.

——————
The statue put up in Central Park in Glendale makes me feel very uneasy because I am Japanese.

I am married to a non-Japanese and we have a seven years old daughter.

My daughter said, ‘I cannot hate half of myself. Why am I hated?’”
This statue is alienating her from many friends for something she has nothing to do with.

The statue has no educational value at all.

It is rather promoting confusion and racism to discriminate against Japanese people living in the United States.

I believe that the United States of America is the country where a variety of peoples live, thus making the US a very diverse country.

We should not divide people into ethnical groups but bring people together as is the core virtue of the United States of America.”
——————-

The comfort women statue in Glendale says, “I was a sex slave of Japanese military”.

On the memorial statue at Palisades Park in New Jersey, the following words are written.
“In memory of the more than 200,000 women and girls who were abducted by the armed forces of the government of Imperial Japan 1930′s-1945 known as comfort women.”

This is how the lies about the comfort women are being spread to the world.
These lies not only ruin Japanese dignity but also threaten security of Japanese and Japanese Americans in the United States.

Nadeshiko Action never wants this issue to be inherited by our children generation after generation.

By the way, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights called UNCHR has regarded the comfort women challenge as an international issue.

Nadeshiko Action collaborates with the Alliance for Truth about Comfort Women called “ATCW”, which has formed the Japan’s Collaboration Team for UN Committee.
A delegation comprising key members of this alliance will visit UNCHR in Geneva from July 14th to 16th.
ATCW is an organization, in which many groups involved in the comfort women issue are members.
I am the leader of the Japan’s Collaboration Team for UN Committee and Kiyoshi Hosoya, who is a historian, is Secretary General.

The delegation has three purposes.

First of all, one of Japan’s conservative groups will visit the UNCHR for the first time.

Secondly, the delegation will study the organization of UNCHR and its activities in order for us to make appropriate steps to successively interact with the organization in the near future.

Finally, after returning to Japan, we will make a report on our findings, and will let many people know what is really happening at the United Nations, and will take action to let as many people in the world as possible know how the UN is using the comfort women issue is degrading Japan.

Let me state the views of the delegation on the comfort women issue.

1. What were Comfort Women?
Comfort Women were not sex slaves but were war-time prostitutes who enjoyed time spending freely, and who worked under contract in exchange for a highly paid monetary reward for that time.
Their wages were often 100 times more than the average Japanese soldiers.
As a proof for this, please see the document by United States Office of War Information.
The document, which was written in 1944, clearly states that the living conditions of these girls were “near-luxury,” “they had plenty of money with which to purchase desired articles,” and “they amused themselves by participating in sports events……attended picnics, entertainments, and social dinners.”
As this document indicates they were nothing but well-paid prostitutes.

2. Coomaraswamy Report
The Coomaraswamy Report was written based on fabricated stories, and no longer has any value being a Human Rights Report.
The report published in 1996 was often used as evidence that sex slaves did exist during the war.
However, the report does not at all refer to the US document.
The report listed two references as its source for the claim, which are “My War Crimes” by Seiji Yoshida and “Comfort Women” by G. Hicks.
Hicks wrote his book using information from Yoshida’s book, and Yoshida confessed that his book was a fabrication.
Based on these facts, it is right to conclude that the Coomaraswamy Report no longer has any value being a Human Rights Report.

3. Stories of Comfort Women
Stories told by the so-called comfort women are the last remaining basis of the argument on the sex slave.
The stories have not been verified yet.
The fact that the argument is based only on the stories without pursuing or proving the sex slave means that the sex slave is fabricated story.
The stories of the so-called comfort women lack any substantial evidence and cause doubts about their truth.
The Coomaraswamy Report quotes those unverified stories as evidence.
The issue appeared around 1991, however the fact that year after year for over twenty years no verification has been made for the stories means that the stories of sex slave either cannot be verified or are fabricated.

They are our official views.

In Geneva, we will have a press conference and a reception at the Hotel Bristol Geneva from 7 pm on July the14th.
I will welcome media people.
I hope that many European media people also come to the press conference and reception.

Thank you very much for listening.

************************
【訂正】文中にある「 United Nations Commission on Human Rights/UNCHR」の現在の正式名称は「United Nations Human Rights Council/UNHRC」です。ここに訂正いたします。

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7 thoughts on “Speech at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan on July 9th, 2014

  1. K. Asanuma says:

    日々の活動に感謝しております。我が国や国民のために、これほどまでに身を削ってくださり有難うございます。「~すべきだ。」「~でなければならない。」と適当なコメントをする言論人が多々いますが、行動してくださる「なでしこアクション」は本当の愛国者です。有難うございます。


  2. 日本市民 says:

    外国特派員協会での記者会見の記録動画及び質疑応答をまとめたサイトです

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8rd1kXMUM8

    ttp://blogos.com/article/90160/


  3. guts says:

    山本さんのご尽力には本当に頭が下がり、感謝の言葉しかありません。
    費用がカンパや自腹とありましたが、大変な事と思います。

    なでしこアクションの口座などはあるのでしょうか?
    少ない額ですが入金したいと思います。


    • admin says:

      guts様   

      寄付のお申し出有難うございます。

      山本優美子が団長を務めます国連への調査団ですが、「慰安婦の真実国民運動」からの調査団という形で行きます。
      なでしこアクションとしては寄付口座を設けておりません。
      そこで、こちらの方にご寄附いただましたら幸いです。

      =====
      慰安婦の真実国連運動
      http://ameblo.jp/ianfushinjitu/

      <諸活動へご寄付のお願い>
      郵便振替口座
      記号番号 00100-5-695372
      名称「慰安婦の真実」国民運動

      ======

      お気持ち心より感謝申し上げます。
      今後もよろしくお願いいたします。

      ブログ管理者より


  4. こまめ says:

    ついに、外国人特派員協会で会見できましたね!
    あそこでは、吉松郁美や塩村文夏などの偏った会見ばかりなされて、不信感が一杯でしたので、本当に頑張ってくださったのだと感謝いたします。
    公の場で発言すれば、相手は嘘を言いにくくなります。

    勇気というものは伝染しますから、これできっと勢いがつくと思います!

    私達のおかれている状況は、大変厳しいですが、誠実に向き合った結果、韓国は嘘をついているのは間違いありません。

    一歩一歩頑張りましょう。 山本さん、ありがとうございます。


  5. みなみ風 says:

    会見を拝見して、慰安婦問題に正面から取り組む強い意志を感じました。毅然としたお姿を、逃げ腰の自民党政治家達に見習って欲しいものです。通訳の方も、ときに山本さんの言葉を補った翻訳をしてくれてとても良かったと思います。

    まだまだ情勢は険しいですが、南朝鮮・シナが100回嘘を言うのなら、こちらは1000回真実を訴える気力が必要だと思います。微力ながら応援します。


  6. 一日本人 says:

    まず、山本様をはじめ、なでしこアクションの活動に取り組んでおられる方々の勇気と労に感謝と敬意を表したいと思います。
    その上で、このビデオを見させていただいた感想を、率直に述べさせていただきたいと思います。
    まず、通訳者の人選が誤りとしかいいようがありません。どのような通訳エージェントに、単価いくらで依頼されたのかは分かりませんが。
    ・良い点:ほぼ完成に近い英語センテンスを話すことができている
    ・悪い点:抑揚がない、リズムもアクセントもない、人格を感じさせない、だらだらとした話し方。つまり、相手を説得するプレゼン能力がない。実際に英語ネイティブの人々が耳を傾けるのは、発言者ではなく通訳者です。つまり、通訳者は、発言者と同じもしくはそれ以上のプレゼン能力が要求されます。同じ内容を話していても、言い方ひとつで、相手に与える印象はまったく変わってしまうのです。
    ・質疑応答で、通訳ミスがみられます。これは致命的です。

    会見全体のプレゼン上の問題もあります。山本様はあえてこの服装を選ばれたのかもしれませんが、失敗に見えます。西洋人からみて、ブルジョワジーなイメージの装いをした女性が「女性の人権は大事です」と言ったところで、戯言のようにしか見えない恐れがあります。またデリケートな内容からしても、この場では白シャツに紺ジャケットのような服装にするべきだったと思います。
    また、緊張をやわらげようとして、時々笑顔をされていますが、日本人のそうした笑顔はたいていの場合、西洋人にとっては意味不明、もしくは都合の悪いことをかくそうとしている、と解釈されます。
    これほどデリケートな話題についての会見ならなおさら、堂々とした、それでいて真摯なまなざしを最初から最後まで貫くほうが好印象だったと思います。

    女性の外国人記者の重要な質問が的確に通訳されず、またそれに明確に答えられてもいません。
    要は、「われわれ欧米人の価値観では、親に『売られた』のなら、もうそれは『奴隷』であると考えられる。なのになぜ『奴隷』ではないと言えるのか。」という質問です。つまり「奴隷」の定義を問題としているのです。
    「お金をもらっていれば奴隷ではない」というのはおかしいという主張に対して、明確な答えを主張する必要があります。そうでないと、欧米人の理解は得られません。

    私の考えを述べさせていただきますと、
    人が本人の意思に反して「売られた」場合、その時点で奴隷である、と言えます。
    ここで日本側が問題にすべきは、「売った側」と「買った側」がいて初めて奴隷売買は成立する、つまり売った側にも奴隷化の責任があるということです。なのに、韓国は100%被害者を装い、自らの責任を否定している、これが問題なのです。

    次に、いったん奴隷となった人に「やめる自由を与えるかどうか」これが問題となります。買った側の日本が彼女たちをどう扱ったか、これはおそらくケースバイケースだったでしょう。管理下に置かれた女性もいれば、こっそり逃がしてもらえた女性もいたかもしれません。なのでこの部分を完全白黒で論じるのはおそらく不可能です。

    ただ言えることは、近年のボスニア戦争で集団レイプが大きな国際問題となるまで、戦争中の女性に対する性的人権侵害が、国際社会で犯罪として大きく議論されることはありませんでした。つまり、第二次大戦中は、世界中のどこでも、戦地の女性に対する性暴力は犯罪とは定義されていなかったのです。
    ですのでそもそも、現代の国際社会の人権意識をもって、第二次大戦時の人権侵害を裁こうとすることそのものに無理があります。

    他にも書きたいことはいろいろありますが長くなりますのでこのあたりで。
    なでしこアクションの皆様方には、国際法の歴史について学んでいただき、海外の取材に対して的確な理論武装をしていただきたいと切に望みます。


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