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Harvard professor ignites uproar over Korean sex slave claims

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By COLLIN BINKLEY

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J Mark Ramseyer is actually sponsored by Mitsubishi. Literally.

https://rijs.fas.harvard.edu/j-mark-ramseyer

23 ( +47 / -24 )

Sure! the sex slaves volunteered, and the patients of the Unit731 also volunteered, and the killed on Nanking also volunteered, all of them were abused willingly.

18 ( +48 / -30 )

As soon as Ramseyer penned his scholarly opine; it was torn apart-good!

4 ( +20 / -16 )

It is in 1957, prostitution was banned in Japan by law. People were not as sensitive as it is today about existence of prostitutions in the societies. Do not judge things with today's standard.

-18 ( +20 / -38 )

Talking about evidence on this subject is redicuolous!

Look at the evidence Korea is using.

Look at the numbers Korea is saying we used as comfort women. Is it millions? A quarter million? Some say it was all Korean women.

Perspective:

-You lose a war. The women you paid, All of them are sex slaves forced against their will.

-You win a war. You never had comfort women, you never paid for prostitution. You never committed war crimes. Fact of life.

-16 ( +25 / -41 )

If you look closer at the laws of prostitution in Japan, you will find that prostitution is legal. It is hidden as a health procedure and the Japanese government has chosen certain hotels [ cannot reveal which ones ] for the girls and guys of Japan to utilize. How do I know this? A few years ago there was a court case against one of the girls but it was declared that she did nothing wrong due to the fact that she did not technically break the prostitution law because she utilized the correct Governmental hotel. If you want to know which ones, do your homework. You can see them everywhere around Tokyo. From what I heard, this form of prostitution is for older more wealthier gentlemen of means.

3 ( +17 / -14 )

At last, truth is coming out. You can’t fool all the people all the time. Good job, Professor Ramseyer. I admire your courage and academic integrity.

-5 ( +27 / -32 )

Question for JT users:

How many countries military have used prostitution? Paid for sex?

How many countries do you think have used it in the past 80 years?

Fun fact:

It's still being used today!

My bad... Let's focus on Japan. Only country to ever do such a thing.. Right.

-8 ( +29 / -37 )

Nothing is willing if the other party is armed with a gun.

21 ( +39 / -18 )

Reasonand”Wisdom”Nippon,

The ‘He started it’ defense didn’t work in the nursery school sandpit, and it doesn’t work now.

8 ( +21 / -13 )

Japan should stop brainwashing the naive Japanese with distortion of history.

https://youtu.be/9K4zhfMHM4U

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_history_textbook_controversies

https://apjjf.org/-Mark-Selden/3173/article.html

https://www.heritage.org/asia/report/the-pearl-harbor-anniversary-japan-still-says-dont-blame-me

Because of this kind of history textbooks, many Japanese believes Japan was a victim rather than an aggressor, and even today they still are instigating racism against Koreans, a major victim during the WWII:

https://dattarakinchan.hatenablog.com/entry/20181203/1543846906

Misinformation and fake news are widespread in the Japanese media dealing with South Korea. You may confirm this by reading readers' comments on Korean news at Yahoo! Japan news ( https://news.yahoo.co.jp ).

1 ( +26 / -25 )

Interestingly, someone I know gave me exactly the same response two years ago when I mentioned comfort women to him.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The ‘He started it’ defense didn’t work in the nursery school sandpit, and it doesn’t work now.

They're in the nursery school sandpit, since that's the ONLY excuse the rightwingers have

4 ( +16 / -12 )

So they are protesting an American professor at an American Ivy League university, but ...

their protest signs are in Korean. Not English, so ...

Their protest is for a strictly Korean audience.

6 ( +17 / -11 )

Looking at Japan's history and culture of hostage taking and blackmail, I'm sure that the ocupying Japanese authorities would make life very difficult for the family of those who did not comply, at that time.

0 ( +13 / -13 )

Not a peer-review paper.

5 ( +14 / -9 )

ReasonandWisdomNipponToday  07:31 am JST

Question for JT users:

How many countries...

Why do you want to talk about other countries instead of offering a valid and convincing argument in defence of Japanese wartime conduct?

12 ( +23 / -11 )

Bizarrely, the article fails to mention that Ramseyer is sponsored by Mitsubishi. The number of people profiting from historical denial has spread as far as Harvard, it seems.

21 ( +36 / -15 )

I’ve read the paper he wrote. It is garbage.

There is literally a part in it where he describes a ten year old girl being dragooned into a horrifying life of indentured sexual servitude as a positive story of her negotiating a contract of employment. A TEN YEAR OLD girl.

Its really weird to me that the peer reviewers and editors didn’t flag that bit. The paper has been torn apart by historians, economists and legal scholars for a slew of other serious breaches of academic standards. He has become an embarrassment.

I’ve actually met Ramseyer before, he is a pretty big name in the field of Japanese legal studies. He has always been a contrarian and a bit controversial, but in the past he has mostly written about topics that weren’t too controversial, mostly corporate law stuff. The past few months though he has been churning out sloppily researched papers targeting various groups which have raised similar issues.

19 ( +30 / -11 )

Not a peer-review paper.

Sadly it was a peer reviewed paper.

Likely it was reviewed by law and economics scholars who were familiar with the theoretical literature he was working with (game theory and credible commitments in contracts) and had no clue about the historical facts he was alleging. This is a problem in cross disciplinary journals.

10 ( +18 / -8 )

Very likely this Harvard professor has been bought off. At any rate, his academic paper is spurious .

3 ( +12 / -9 )

There is literally a part in it where he describes a ten year old girl being dragooned into a horrifying life of indentured sexual servitude as a positive story of her negotiating a contract of employment. A TEN YEAR OLD girl.

Of course, you didn't read THAT Book at all. The book clearly pointed that she already knew what those women were expected to do for the job at the age of 10 and FYI, she did not start it at the age of 10.

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

“Contracting for Sex in the Pacific War”: The Case for Retraction on Grounds of Academic Misconduct.

https://apjjf.org/2021/5/ConcernedScholars.html

J Mark Ramseyer, a professor of Japanese legal studies at Harvard Law School is a disgrace, to further degrade and frankly persecute, torment these last few pensioners to abuse is contemptuous defamation.

Contracting for sex in the Pacific War - The Chwe Family

http://chwe.net/ramseyer/ramseyer.pdf

5 ( +9 / -4 )

So when do people in South Korea and in the world realize they have been all fooled by these crooks like

Chong Dae Hyup and ad-towers like Lee Yong-Soo. It is just hard to believe.

-3 ( +11 / -14 )

rainyday

Peer-review seems so.

https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2021/2/7/hls-paper-international-controversy/

Ramseyer’s peer-reviewed article in the academic journal IRLE. I think that must be the International Review of Law and Economics.

further

“Contracting for Sex in the Pacific War”: The Case for Retraction on Grounds of Academic Misconduct

"We became aware of Mark Ramseyer’s article - a revisionist account of the "contractual dynamics" of the comfort station system, published in the International Review of Law and Economics (IRLE) - when we encountered media coverage about it, based on a Japanese language article in the Sankei Shimbun summarizing the journal article.1"

https://apjjf.org/2021/5/ConcernedScholars.html

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

In order to avoid misunderstanding, I think the SK government should manage to reduce the number of Korean prostitute in the foreign countries.

https://toku-log.com/2021/03/06/post-20420/

-11 ( +7 / -18 )

@Simon Foston

When discussion about a particular subject is unpalatable then there is an attempt to refocus the conversation on something else,instead of deal with the facts at hand-it is a familiar ploy.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

If the academic has fabricated evidence that's misconduct

Peer review should have found that though, it shouldn't have made it to print

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Despite the dearth of documentation (destroyed by Japanese officialdom) there still remains sufficient evidence to support the historical claim that the Japanese army was serviced by Korean women as well as those of other nations on a basis that was organized and coercive. That some women (including poor Japanese) "volunteered" as sex workers is neither here nor there since clearly their poverty consented, not their will.

Question for JT users:

How many countries military have used prostitution? Paid for sex?

How many countries do you think have used it in the past 80 years?

Fun fact:

It's still being used today!

My bad... Let's focus on Japan. Only country to ever do such a thing.. Right.

OK, Boomer, but all of the above can be subsumed in one word: WHATABOUTERY, which is the usual MO of people who have nothing substantial to contribute to an argument but instead just monger red herrings and display faux wares. Caveat emptor!

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

There is literally a part in it where he describes a ten year old girl being dragooned into a horrifying life of indentured sexual servitude as a positive story of her negotiating a contract of employment. A TEN YEAR OLD girl.

That is sick and perverted. But then, I guess, some people will say and write anything for money.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

J Mark Ramseyer is sponsored by Mitsubishi.

Mitsubishi is already distancing themselves from the paper:

Spokesperson Jeremy J. Barnes of Mitsubishi Motors North America wrote in an emailed statement Friday that “the program at Harvard Law School is not in any way related to our company (Mitsubishi Motors North America) or our parent company (Mitsubishi Motors Corporation).”

https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2021/3/8/governments-worldwide-criticize-ramseyer/

The Harvard Crimson article in the link above is highly recommended. It adds a lot of information to the story.

It is in 1957, prostitution was banned in Japan by law.

Well, that explains Tobita Shinchi... /s

9 ( +15 / -6 )

Of course, you didn't read THAT Book at all. The book clearly pointed that she already knew what those women were expected to do for the job at the age of 10 and FYI, she did not start it at the age of 10.

It isn’t a book, it is a research paper that is less than 10 pages long, so obviously you haven’t read it, but by all means keep telling me about all the mistakes I made in reading the paper you haven’t read.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Of course, you didn't read THAT Book at all. The book clearly pointed that she already knew what those women were expected to do for the job at the age of 10 and FYI, she did not start it at the age of 10.

It isn’t a book, it is a research paper that is less than 10 pages long, so obviously you haven’t read it, but by all means keep telling me about all the mistakes I made in reading the paper you haven’t read.

I did read the paper and you did not read the book the professor refereed to, which clearly states the girl knew it.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

Well said, Professor Ramsmeyer. Finally the truth is revealed to the world. Harvard is the worlds best university, so the Koreans can whine all they want but they lack credibility, whereas Ramsmeyer as a scholar has plenty.

Get ready for the campaign of hate against Ramsmeyer, and Harvard. ALL Korean students will be ordered by Moon to leave Harvard. Guaranteed.

-14 ( +12 / -26 )

And here we go again.....

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Six pages of revisionism by  J Mark Ramseyer.

16 ( +22 / -6 )

Most hated man in academia now.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

@kennyG

So when do people in South Korea and in the world realize they have been all fooled by these crooks like

Chong Dae Hyup and ad-towers like Lee Yong-Soo. It is just hard to believe.

You mean those Taiwanese women were also fooled?

https://youtu.be/ERGCprXBdUU

0 ( +9 / -9 )

@kurisupisu

When discussion about a particular subject is unpalatable then there is an attempt to refocus the conversation on something else,instead of deal with the facts at hand-it is a familiar ploy.

Yes. Obfuscation is a major feature of Japanese diplomacy, history books, and discussion as we witness here.

2 ( +11 / -9 )

His paper was about the comfort women from Imperial Japan, specifically focusing on Korean women but those crooks and supporting academia mixing the cases with others like the individual war/sex crimes in Indonesia to paint all the cases in one colour.

The contracts did exist by the form of paper contract. However just because Ramseyer could not find them, it doesn't mean the contracts did not exist. Besides, different from Western world, Contractual agreement didn't always come with western style written agreement.

It is not Whataboutery. People should answer IF it is IJA or Japanese as the sole evil, how come those Korean comfort women under the same naming Ian-fu kept serving US/UN/Korean soldiers through 1945.

-8 ( +10 / -18 )

kennyGToday  09:41 am JST

The contracts did exist by the form of paper contract. However just because Ramseyer could not find them, it doesn't mean the contracts did not exist.

Really watertight argument you've got there.

Besides, different from Western world, Contractual agreement didn't always come with western style written agreement.

That's convenient, isn't it. Sounds like when claims are made that the Japanese authorities behaved perfectly, we just have to take them at their word.

Fighto!

Today 09:19 am JST

Harvard is the worlds best university,

Never mind that lots of other Harvard scholars have been disassociating themselves from this stuff.

...so the Koreans can whine all they want but they lack credibility, whereas Ramsmeyer as a scholar has plenty.

The same couldn't be said about his article, especially since he doesn't have much credibility as a historian.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

J Mark Ramseyer never for one moment stopped to think about the emotional wellbeing of the women themselves, or the political damage as supposedly a professor of Japanese legal studies at Harvard Law School.

J Mark Ramseyer metaphorically stood in front of these comfort women, denigrated dismissing there suffering by spitting in there face calling them liars.

So the Harvard Law School reputation is now at stake.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Thank you Asiaman7, case closed.

J Mark Ramseyer is actually sponsored by Mitsubishi. Literally.

https://rijs.fas.harvard.edu/j-mark-ramseyer

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Well said, Professor Ramsmeyer. Finally the truth is revealed to the world."

Truth as envisioned and paid for by Nippon Kaigi & Co.

11 ( +19 / -8 )

"Ramseyer’s article, titled “Contracting for sex in the Pacific War,” was published online in December and was scheduled to appear in the March issue of the International Review of Law and Economics. The issue has been suspended, however, and the journal issued an “expression of concern” saying the piece is under investigation."

In other words, you can't publish something that goes against the establishment. I wonder what would be the reaction, if a Japanese journal refuse to publish an article because it used the term sex slave. it has become obvious that freedom of expression is a myth in the west.

 J Mark Ramseyer  the Gallio of the 21st century.

"yet it moves"

and

"They were prostitutes."

Reason in the face of ignorance.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

kennyGToday  08:53 am JST

So when do people in South Korea and in the world realize they have been all fooled by these crooks like ChongDae Hyup and ad-towers like Lee Yong-Soo. It is just hard to believe.

You think the Sankei Shinbun is completely objective, accurate and believable? Looks to me like a lot of gullible Japanese people have been fooled by wartime leaders who got to keep running the country after the war and had a vested interest in not letting sordid matters like this undermine their moral authority.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

marcelitoToday  10:14 am JST

"Well said, Professor Ramsmeyer. Finally the truth is revealed to the world."

Truth as envisioned and paid for by Nippon Kaigi & Co.

I understand he's received some nice, shiny medals from the Japanese government. Wouldn't surprise me if Nippon Kaigi had something to do with that, what with most of the Cabinet as members.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

" Mark Ramseyer is actually sponsored by Mitsubishi."

common practice in the west for major corporations to give money to think tanks and universities. Korea does the same thing:

Concerns Raised Over South Korean Support for U.S. Scholars

https://www.chronicle.com/article/concerns-raised-over-south-korean-support-for-u-s-scholars/

-7 ( +8 / -15 )

A significant proportion of these sex slaves were children.

Ramseyer believes children also chose to be prostitutes. Sick individual, desperate to make a name for himself.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Sorry folks, South Korean academics have written papers that say the same based on well documented research.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

"Most alarming to historians is what they say is a lack of evidence in the paper:"

and there is no evidence to support the Koreans either. Moreover, it was a game theory article, in game theory you use math.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

"A significant proportion of these sex slaves were children."

any evidence to back up your statement?

-8 ( +7 / -15 )

I did read the paper and you did not read the book the professor refereed to, which clearly states the girl knew it.

So? She was TEN YEARS OLD. The argument Ramseyer is making is that a 10 year old could freely make a contract to sell herself into sexual slavery. 10 year old cannot make contracts of ANY SORT, let alone contracts to sell themselves into sexual slavery. Not now, not in the 1940s, not even in the Meiji era.

Also, while I haven't read the original book, I note that historians who have read it would disagree with your characterization of what she actually says, citing quotes by her such as:

 “Although I had some idea of what a prostitute was, no one explained it and we [i.e. the girls who had yet to be initiated as prostitutes] didn’t ask. We didn’t really know anything.”

and

“After our first night, we were terrified. We hadn’t realized this was what men and women did. It was so horrible, we could hardly believe it.”

Putting that aside though, the idea that in 2021 a law scholar is promoting the idea that 10 year olds have the agency to enter into binding contracts for sexual services is outrageous.

His paper was about the comfort women from Imperial Japan, specifically focusing on Korean women but those crooks and supporting academia mixing the cases with others like the individual war/sex crimes in Indonesia to paint all the cases in one colour.

Well, his paper says there was no government involvement in the comfort women system. That system used women from a lot of different countries, yet he only cites the Korean example as proof of his point, so the fact that he ommitted discussing these other cases is relevant to whether his conclusion is correct or not.

The contracts did exist by the form of paper contract. However just because Ramseyer could not find them, it doesn't mean the contracts did not exist. Besides, different from Western world, Contractual agreement didn't always come with western style written agreement.

The onus is on him to demonstrate that the contracts that he is writing about actually exist. Its an insanely serious breach of academic standards to be saying that contracts which you have zero evidence of the existence of actually existed, and also that you know all the terms of the contracts (which again you haven't read because they do not exist).

Also, this isn't a cultural clash thing, oral contractual agreements exist in the West too. To establish their existence you need oral testimony of some sort to establish their existence. Here too, he cites no evidence that oral contracts existed either.

It is not Whataboutery. People should answer IF it is IJA or Japanese as the sole evil, how come those Korean comfort women under the same naming Ian-fu kept serving US/UN/Korean soldiers through 1945.

Actually that is whataboutery, Ramseyer's paper doesn't touch at all on that question.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

There is literally a part in it where he describes a ten year old girl being dragooned into a horrifying life of indentured sexual servitude as a positive story of her negotiating a contract of employment. A TEN YEAR OLD girl.

There is no answer for this. He is confirming the rape the went on.

My bad... Let's focus on Japan. Only country to ever do such a thing.. Right.

Just so you know. This means you're throwing the white flag in this discussion which I don't think you mean to.

The Sex Slave/Comfort Woman issue are about those who were forced to work serving sometime over 100 men a day. The prostitutes who signed up for such work is outside the discussion. Simple point.

Ramseyer mixes the two groups and tries to academically legitimize Japan's lone weak argument: they were ALL prostitutes.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

A taboo subject is what happened after USA occupied Japan after our defeat in WW2. Thousands and thousands of girls/women were used by the GIs. Many fathers sacrificed their daughters to protect their wives. When I first came here I sometimes heard these stories first hand, but time has pasted and many are no longer here.

same as Korea.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Not only does Harvard discriminate against Asians in admissions, uniformly deeming them dull and without extracurricular interests, but also publishes “scholarly” papers stirring up rancor among Asians. It’s long past time for the Supreme Court to put a stop to the madness. If ever anyone needed evidence that it is possible to be so smart they are stupid, one only need look to Harvard.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

While Mitsubishi N.A. has distanced itself from the issue, the curious fact remains that Ramsmeyer is Mitsubishi Professor of Japanese Legal Studies and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was ordered by the S.K. Supreme court to pay compensation for forced wartime labor.

A further court ruling - after reparations were not paid - ordered the seizure of Mitsubishi Assets. This has been appealed by Mitsubishi and is an extremely troubling issue for them and the Japanese govt.

So it's not surprising that an article appeared denouncing historical S.K. claims in an attempt to "lighten the load" on the Japanese govt and Mitsubishi.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

What kind of scumbag dismissed first hand account of women from dozen different countries in Asia including women from Netherlands and Australia while defending prostitution 'contracts' of impoverished 10 year, 14 year old girls?????

5 ( +11 / -6 )

and there is no evidence to support the Koreans either. Moreover, it was a game theory article, in game theory you use math.

The article is "sort of" about game theory, but game theory isn't necessarily about math (no math is used in the paper). Game theory is basically a bunch of models which seek to predict or explain human behavior from the viewpoint of those humans responding to rules as if they were players in a game.

The specific game theory he was dealing with was credible commitments in contracts. How do two parties in a contract convince each other that they won't cheat on the bargain being made? This is a real life problem because if those parties can't do that, they won't enter contracts in the first place and this will mean economically beneficial transactions won't happen. Usually this is explored in bland business contexts and NOT in an area like the comfort women system.

So his basic premise is that prostitution is a problem of credible commitment in contracts between prostitutes and their "employers" (pimps, brothel owners, whatever). His theory is that since prostitution is horrible work, prostitutes have an incentive to run away from it, and also its hard to entice them into the trade. So he posits that they get around this by demanding large up front payments and short term contracts. The large payments entice them into the work, the short term contracts discourage them from running away. IN THEORY.

The problem is, he originally developed this theory looking at prostitution in Japan in the 1920s, which is way different from the comfort women system, which occurred in wartime and mostly involved foreign women, vastly different contexts, yet he applies the theory without any sort of recognition of this difference. He also doesn't really have any evidence that this is how the system worked, and wilfully ignores a vast volume of evidence to the contrary. Some of the women in the system were previously prostitutes who may have had some agency and the ability to form contracts, but the evidence available indicates a huge number of them were not. They were either lied to or forced into it, which is not something you can explain away using theories about credible commitments in contract theory.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

I have not read the paper myself, but I wonder if he also claims that the European prisoners of war who were forced into sex slavery by the Japanese military did so voluntarily. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Ruff_O%27Herne

0 ( +5 / -5 )

I have sympathy for these women. But one thing missing in this whole affair is an honest and open discussion of the role Korean men played as interlocutors (read pimps) in the setting up and running of comfort stations. Perhaps it is with these men the contracts were signed?

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Seems lazy people here so interested in whether the contract ( written contract) did really exist or not.

Here Try to read Korean or Korean to English google translate works pretty good, even better from E to Japanese.

https://www.mediawatch.kr/news/article.html?no=255407

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

J Mark Ramseyer is actually sponsored by Mitsubishi. Literally.

https://rijs.fas.harvard.edu/j-mark-ramseyer

Apparently, the money isn't worth it at all. China can buy thousands of professors in the Ivy League, while Japan can buy one or two. If Japan wants to have a race of dominating revisionism, it is no shape to compete against China. Of course, China is not happy with the Japanese historical denialism of WWII either.

Japanese elites made a dumb move of angering China, the US, South Korea, and many Asian nations through their historical denialism.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Seems lazy people here so interested in whether the contract ( written contract) did really exist or not.

Yeah, not because I'm lazy but because it is a research paper about CONTRACTS, be they written or oral.

The theoretical issue he is addressing is credible commitments in CONTRACTS and the main piece of empirical evidence he presents in support of his theory are CONTRACTS that he says existed and his entire argument falls apart if those CONTRACTS, which he provides zero evidence of (again in written or oral form) did not in fact exist.

So the question of whether or not these CONTRACTS existed is absolutely the key to his paper, which again is a paper about CONTRACTS. It is intellectually lazy to call those who criticize him lazy for pointing this out.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Academia is not immune to the Peter principle.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

It was a mixed bag. There were some prostitutes who worked as comfort women willingly, but a large number or women and girls were tricked into thinking that they were going to work in factories as laborers and whatnot. When the Japanese Army came to your village and knocked on your door in those days, you really had no choice but to follow them to wherever they took you. However, the global statue campaign looks more like a shame campaign, so it's effectiveness is questionable.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

So? She was TEN YEARS OLD. The argument Ramseyer is making is that a 10 year old could freely make a contract to sell herself into sexual slavery. 10 year old cannot make contracts of ANY SORT, let alone contracts to sell themselves into sexual slavery. Not now, not in the 1940s, not even in the Meiji era.

Also, while I haven't read the original book, I note that historians who have read it would disagree with your characterization of what she actually says, citing quotes by her such as:

 “Although I had some idea of what a prostitute was, no one explained it and we [i.e. the girls who had yet to be initiated as prostitutes] didn’t ask. We didn’t really know anything.”

and

“After our first night, we were terrified. We hadn’t realized this was what men and women did. It was so horrible, we could hardly believe it.”

Putting that aside though, the idea that in 2021 a law scholar is promoting the idea that 10 year olds have the agency to enter into binding contracts for sexual services is outrageous.

> A historian you referring to blocked fatal question about her false-interpretation on her paper and run away.

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/1

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/2

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/1

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/2

So?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Well, his paper says there was no government involvement in the comfort women system. That system used women from a lot of different countries, yet he only cites the Korean example as proof of his point, so the fact that he ommitted discussing these other cases is relevant to whether his conclusion is correct or not.

Yeah Yeah mixing up Korean cases with all other individual war/sex crimes under one big fake narrative is your and their usual practice. and yet keep denouncing whataboutery of those individual war/sex crimes.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Yeah Yeah mixing up Korean cases with all other individual war/sex crimes under one big fake narrative is your and their usual practice.

Not sure who you are talking about, I haven't done anything but specifically criticize Ramseyer's paper here, which is all I care about in this context.

I am NOT trying to get into the bigger political debate between Japan and Korea about responsibility for the comfort women issue, but just to be clear: frankly I find both sides obnoxious. On the Korean side the politics of it is just plain ugly and there is a political movement that will continually bash Japan over it no matter what Japan does. And they also use it to silence historians who dare to mention the fact that Koreans were also involved in trafficking women, etc. But on the other side, the denialist position in Japan is also ugly. The evidence is pretty clear that the Japanese military was involved and this was a very horrible crime committed against a huge number of women. Pretending that didn't happen, or all these women were willing prostitutes is just plain wrong.

That said, the only thing I have been talking about here are the problems with Ramseyer's paper. Its a bad law paper. I say this as an academic in a related field. Its just bad on numerous levels. That is INDEPENDENT of whatever one thinks of the political debate between Japan and Korea about this issue.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

It is in 1957, prostitution was banned in Japan by law. 

Must be why there are no soaplands or delivery health business in Japan these days.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

This is for the most part is probably true. Actually the Korean's are doing this on Guam for tens of years and still doing it even in Korea to service the American military. I lived in Guam for for ten years, so I know this is happening. They run more than 90% of the strip clubs and brothels which they call massage parlors. They are run by Korean mama-sans..some are local Korean or other ethnicities but mostly, they bring the women from Korea who under no duress go on three month tourist visas. There are some upscale ones which even provide over 18 or college women as prostitutes and they all come willingly under contract. Prostitutes will be prostitutes.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

rainydayToday  11:46 am JST

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/1

https://twitter.com/mdmd_ikeru/status/1365737707641528320/photo/2

So?

So What? Her case was quoted as backgrounds of prostitutions history in Japan and Korea. She was not even a comfort woman contracting for sex during pacific war. And she knew what she would have to do but just didn't have actual experience and got shocked at her first experience. That's the fact

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Would you like another proof the contracts did exist, by a brave Korean professor.

again google translate for those who don't read Korean

http://www.pennmike.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=41590

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Not sure who you are talking about, I haven't done anything but specifically criticize Ramseyer's paper here, which is all I care about in this context.

I am NOT trying to get into the bigger political debate between Japan and Korea about responsibility for the comfort women issue, but just to be clear: frankly I find both sides obnoxious. On the Korean side the politics of it is just plain ugly and there is a political movement that will continually bash Japan over it no matter what Japan does. And they also use it to silence historians who dare to mention the fact that Koreans were also involved in trafficking women, etc. But on the other side, the denialist position in Japan is also ugly. The evidence is pretty clear that the Japanese military was involved and this was a very horrible crime committed against a huge number of women. Pretending that didn't happen, or all these women were willing prostitutes is just plain wrong.

That said, the only thing I have been talking about here are the problems with Ramseyer's paper. Its a bad law paper. I say this as an academic in a related field. Its just bad on numerous levels. That is INDEPENDENT of whatever one thinks of the political debate between Japan and Korea about this issue.

> Not to worry. Prof.Ramseyer is now working on another paper to refute all those counteraruguments from non-logical, emotional academia ure who you are talking about, I haven't done anything but specifically criticize Ramseyer's paper here, which is all I care about in this context.

> I am NOT trying to get into the bigger political debate between Japan and Korea about responsibility for the comfort women issue, but just to be clear: frankly I find both sides obnoxious. On the Korean side the politics of it is just plain ugly and there is a political movement that will continually bash Japan over it no matter what Japan does. And they also use it to silence historians who dare to mention the fact that Koreans were also involved in trafficking women, etc. But on the other side, the denialist position in Japan is also ugly. The evidence is pretty clear that the Japanese military was involved and this was a very horrible crime committed against a huge number of women. Pretending that didn't happen, or all these women were willing prostitutes is just plain wrong.

> That said, the only thing I have been talking about here are the problems with Ramseyer's paper. Its a bad law paper. I say this as an academic in a related field. Its just bad on numerous levels. That is INDEPENDENT of whatever one thinks of the political debate between Japan and Korea about this issue.

Not worry. Prof.Ramseyer is now working on another paper to refute all those counterarguments from non-logical, emotional scholars where he would surely be provided with actual proofs for Korean contracts did exist.

-9 ( +4 / -13 )

So What? Her case was quoted as backgrounds of prostitutions history in Japan and Korea. She was not even a comfort woman contracting for sex during pacific war. And she knew what she would have to do but just didn't have actual experience and got shocked at her first experience. That's the fact

Well then there was no need to use her case in the first place then, was there?

Would you like another proof the contracts did exist, by a brave Korean professor.

again google translate for those who don't read Korean

I can't read Korean and Google translate isn't really giving me an accurate picture of what he is saying, but the gist of it seems to be oral testimony of one comfort woman indicating she was a prostitute and knowingly entered into a contract for money, correct?

Again, though, so what? Its already acknowledged that some comfort women were prostitutes who did in fact go into it willingly and were capable of making contracts. And yup, this (again, assuming I am understanding what Google translate tells me) seems to be more evidence of that.

But Ramseyer isn't saying some of them did that, he is saying the ENTIRE comfort women system was based solely on that. Despite voluminous evidence to the contrary.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

I see Ramseyer's article as an expression of mostly impotent rage by an aging academic (he is 66 years old) whose time has come and gone. Several younger Japan historians have already taken apart Ramseyer's article in a methodical and systematic fashion. So there is one person at Harvard Law who basically thinks Koreans (including underage girls) were willing, consenting collaborators in their own subordination to and exploitation by Japanese imperialists.

OK, but this alone should not send people on the other side into paroxysms of rage. Ignore it, because Ramseyer doesn't matter that much despite his Harvard affiliation. To me, it's puzzling and kind of sad that Ramseyer actually sat down and wrote something like this in the twilight of his academic career. There are a LOT of bitter older people in U.S. academia who want to get angry feelings off their chest.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

kennyGToday  12:05 pm JST

Would you like another proof the contracts did exist, by a brave Korean professor.

So? Are we supposed to infer from some bits of paper that all the comfort women signed those contracts without being forced to by the Japanese military, who then honoured each one to the letter? Sounds like a very pleasant fantasy for Japanese right-wing nationalists who have been reading the Sankei Shinbun and listening to Shinzo Abe too much.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

So many of you here are so funny like prostitution doesn't exist or people of free will men, women and minors have engaged in this on their own free will through out time, yes for the need of money. It's been around forever...read the bible and history books. Yes there was rape and forced sex...but a lot of men don't want to do that type of violence..they are willing to pay.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

Not worry. Prof.Ramseyer is now working on another paper to refute all those counterarguments from non-logical, emotional scholars where he would surely be provided with actual proofs for Korean contracts did exist.

The scholarly objections to Ramseyer's paper are based on logic and standards, not emotion. Emotion is what drives political discourse, not academic ones.

Logically, Ramseyer fails to establish his argument based on the evidence that exists. His argument is that comfort women entered into contractual arrangements (whether written or oral) and the entire system was based on contracts freely being entered into by informed women.

The onus is on him to demonstrate this, yet his only evidence is either anecdotal or drawn from completely different contexts (mainly studies of pre-war Japanese prostitution markets). This is not sufficient, particularly in light of the overwhelming amount of evidence that large numbers of these women were either coerced or tricked into it.

Also it just doesn't make sense on its face, again using logic. The idea that women had complete agency over themselves and could freely do what they wanted with themselves in that time period ignores the fact that almost NOBODY could exercise free will to decide what they were going to do with themselves at that time. All able bodied men were being pressed into either military service to be used as cannon fodder or to toil in coal mines and factories, while all women were mobilized into the war effort too. It was a fascist dictatorship on a war footing that demanded complete obedience and the full mobilization of society regardless of what people wanted to do. Yet we are being asked to believe that young Korean women - who occupied the absolute weakest and lowest rung on wartime Japan's social ladder - were somehow an exception to this and were apparently the only citizens of the Empire who could freely make informed decisions about what they wanted to do with themselves, and lots of them freely and willingly decided that being sexually abused by dozens of Japanese soldiers day in day out for years on end was exactly what they wanted to do???? Give me a break.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

I always wonder what the difference is between officially sanctioned comfort women stations and gang-operated brothels ubiquitously nesting around bases.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

he alleged the women entered into contracts similar to those used under a separate, licensed system of prostitution in Japan. He rejected accounts of forced labor as “pure fiction,” saying the Japanese army “did not dragoon Korean women to work in its brothels.”

I find the professor's claim half-true. His info is also not at all something new or original.

The core point is, there actually didn't exist "the" comfort women but the huge diversity among women involved in terms of their profiles and wartime experiences. Accounts of women vary profoundly while activists from each camp tend to pick and generalize the one-sided story and totally ignore the other.

I encourage further and serious history inquiries and debates. I'm sorry that things are getting politicized.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

MASSWIPEToday  12:16 pm JST

To me, it's puzzling and kind of sad that Ramseyer actually sat down and wrote something like this in the twilight of his academic career.

Perhaps he's got his eye on some cushy post-retirement sinecure with a discreet ultranationalist think-tank like Nippon Kaigi. I imagine they'd be keen to lavish money and perks on friendly western academics willing to bolster their uyoku fantasy-land claims.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

So far, my tentative conclusion is that some Japanese here, brainwashed by the government-censored history books, do not tell between voluntary prostitutes and sex slaves. They even claim that a ten-year-old girl could make a contract of dealing with a hundred soldiers every night, and the contract was valid enough to apply a game theory. And, they even imply that the girl could get legal advice if the contract was breached.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

This 'academic' paper which Ramseyer (who was given a medal by Abe...Abe's grandfather Kishi is the one who administered the comfort women policy in Manchuria, as well as the decision to use Chinese and Koreans as slave labor in the Manichurian factories) wrote was subject to an investigation by New Yorker magazine, who actually contacted him directly-

https://www.newyorker.com/culture/annals-of-inquiry/seeking-the-true-story-of-the-comfort-women-j-mark-ramseyer?mbid=social_facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_brand=tny&utm_source=facebook&utm_social-type=owned&fbclid=IwAR1ybOdpomnhdP3p5-3ZlfjC5Nyt4vDNo2YXy0NBv_IKvz3y81otVOLdjGA

[ Tessa Morris-Suzuki, a senior figure in modern Japanese history and an emeritus professor at the Australian National University, also wrote to the journal to ask that Ramseyer’s article be retracted. In her letter, she noted that, “bizarrely, he transposed his earlier research from one place and historical period to another, so that a study which was originally about systems that existed in Japan in the 1920s and early 1930s was now presented as a statement about the late 1930s to 1940s wartime ‘comfort station’ system, despite the fact that this system operated in a different time, in different places and in drastically different circumstances.” ]

[ Like Morris-Suzuki, Stanley and her colleagues observed that Ramseyer’s statements in the article were often plainly contrary to the sources he cited for their support. In one striking example, Ramseyer wrote about a young Japanese girl who went to Borneo to work as a prostitute: “When Osaki turned ten, a recruiter stopped by and offered her 300 yen upfront if she would agree to go abroad. The recruiter did not try to trick her; even at age ten, she knew what the job entailed.” Stanley and her colleagues found that the girl’s testimony, in the book that Ramseyer cited, actually said that she and other girls resisted, saying to the brothel keeper, “You brought us here without ever mentioning that kind of work, and now you tell us to take customers. You liar!” The girl further recalled, “After our first night, we were terrified. We hadn’t realized this was what men and women did. It was so horrible, we could hardly believe it.” The scholars also found it “curious” that, while purporting to describe a voluntary contract system, Ramseyer referred to the employer as Osaki’s “owner.” (Ramseyer e-mailed me to say that he was “puzzled and troubled” upon reading the scholars’ allegation of his misstatement, and added, “I don’t know how this happened, but I did in fact make a mistake here.”) ]

[ Ramseyer e-mailed me to identify people—in Korea, Japan, and elsewhere—who are supportive of him... They included four co-authors of the book “Anti-Japan Tribalism,” from 2019, which includes the claim that the story of sex slavery in the case of the comfort women is a lie. One of signatories is a retired economics professor at Seoul National University who was seen in a video slapping a reporter; another is an academic who was punched while leading a demonstration for the removal of a comfort-women statue. On February 8th, six people affiliated with Japanese institutions, who identified themselves as historians, issued an open letter defending Ramseyer’s academic integrity and urging against “canceling” his work. Most don’t appear to have history degrees, and most are connected to a right-wing group that is focused on denying Japanese wartime atrocities. ]

https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2021/2/7/hls-paper-international-controversy/

[ Hosaka also said he suspected Ramseyer’s work was influenced by his connections with the Japanese government. Ramseyer, who was raised in Japan, was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun in 2018, a Japanese government distinction for those who promote Japanese culture abroad. ]

[ In an interview with The Crimson Friday, Ramseyer said he is not aware of the precise origin of the endowed professorship, but believes that Mitsubishi Group made an approximately $1.5 million donation to Harvard in the 1970s to back the position. ]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nobusuke_Kishi

[ Nobusuke Kishi (岸 信介, Kishi Nobusuke, 13 November 1896 – 7 August 1987) was a Japanese politician who was Prime Minister of Japan from 1957 to 1960. He is the maternal grandfather of Shinzo Abe, twice prime minister from 2006 to 2007 and 2012 to 2020.

Known for his brutal rule of the Japanese puppet state Manchukuo in Northeast China in the 1930s, Kishi was nicknamed the "Monster of Manchuria" (満州の妖怪; Manshū no yōkai).[1] Kishi later served in the wartime cabinet of Prime Minister Hideki Tōjō as Minister of Commerce and Vice Minister of Munitions,[2] and co-signed the declaration of war against the United States on December 7, 1941.

After World War II, Kishi was imprisoned for three years as a suspected Class A war criminal. However, the U.S. government did not charge, try, or convict him, and eventually released him as they considered Kishi to be the best man to lead a post-war Japan in a pro-American direction.

All of his friends in Manchukuo were Japanese and Kishi never associated with Chinese or any other ethnic groups in Manchuria on a social basis.[24] Kishi's dinner companions were fellow bureaucrats, businessmen seeking government contracts, Army officers and yakuza gangsters.[24] The presence of the latter was due to Kishi's involvement with the opium trade; the Manchukuo State Opium Monopoly needed distributors to move its products around the world, which in turn required contacts with the underworld in the form of the yakuza.[24] Additionally, Kishi used yakuza thugs to terrorize the Chinese workers in Manchukuo's factories into submission, and ensure that there were no strikes caused by the long hours, low pay and poor working conditions.[25] 

Starting in 1938 and continuing to 1945, about one million Chinese were taken every year to work as slaves in Manchukuo.[34] The harsh conditions of Manchukuo were well illustrated by the Fushun coal mine, which at any given moment had about 40,000 men working as miners, of whom about 25,000 had to be replaced every year as their predecessors had died due to poor working conditions and low living standards.[31]

Kishi's racist and sexist views of Chinese and Korean women as simply "disposable bodies" to be used by Japanese men meant he had no qualms about rounding up women and girls to serve in the "comfort women corps".[37]

6 ( +11 / -5 )

If I may keep things simple, scholars often get things wrong and I get the feeling that this 'expert' is simply after publicity. He is a cretin who should be ignored.

South Korea is right to be upset about the appalling abuse that these poor women suffered at the hands of the Japanese.

However, South Korea must also acknowledge her historical wrongdoings and make reparations to the Vietnamese women who were routinely raped and abused by Korean soldiers who fought alongside the Americans.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

I am not saying the women willingly did it but based on US military documents from the Korean war.

It was clear that in the 1950s families were selling their daughters to UN soldiers as "domestics" the term used by the soldiers for these women was "Moose" derived from musume the Japanese word for daughter.

The documents showed that the military actually had to issue a memorandum stating paying for these women ( yes the memorandum avoided using Buying) was again Military laws and conduct.

Now the term "domestic" is a nice way of saying the women did the caring for the soldiers but also other things not involving washing laundry and cooking.

In top of everything these women were also expected to somehow get a few dollars here and there to send to their family the same family that took payment to give them to the soldiers.

Now before this turns into a US soldier thing, Note that I wrote UN because apparently soldiers from all the UN Countries that sent troops participated in doing this but seems only the US military actually left a paper trail on the subject as the rest either ignored it or were not naive enough to put it on paper.

So one has to ask, how many of these women during WW2 were taken after their own family made the deal with the Japanese military.

Remember in nearly every case these women were rejected by their families after the war. If they had been taken by force wouldn't their families be relieved to have them back alive?

I admit I don't know but far to much one sided information and to many unanswered questions.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Sounds remarkably like the guy is about to release a book or start a media career in Japan. A deliberately controversial publicity stunt maybe?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@Nagoya Chris

However, South Korea must also acknowledge her historical wrongdoings and make reparations to the Vietnamese women who were routinely raped and abused by Korean soldiers who fought alongside the Americans.

That is another issue that can obfuscate the sex-slave issue. I will not detail it as it is out of the topic, but just let you know that most S. Koreans and politicians have been ready to apologize, and actually some presidents did apologize. For example,

https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2017/11/120_239305.html

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

@SJ

So let me get this straight.

When a Japanese PM apologies it isn't enough because everyone didn't.

But when as you put it Some SK president is just fine. Read the article and it was not an actual apology as it clearly states an official apology would be admitting wrong doing by SK.

Interesting how that works.

Oh no mention of the women only the war.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Harvard academics are not what they used to be.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@rainydayToday 12:32 pm JST

The onus is on him to demonstrate this, yet his only evidence is either anecdotal or drawn from completely different contexts (mainly studies of pre-war Japanese prostitution markets).

I think this arbitrary reversal of the burden of proof is the cause of many troubles. Isn't it the responsibility of the plaintiff to prove the illegality, rather than the defendant to prove legality? When you walk past someone on the street, do you presume the clothes on him were stolen, or do you presume he has legitimate ownership rights?

Ramseyer, as far as I can tell, didn't prove everything. We are something like 80 years past the event, which is to say we are well past any prescription periods in normal civil law or any demands to keep documents in administrative law. There's clearly no interest on the part of the "victim" to preserve any written contract (further, if they did next they'll say they were illiterate), and it is inexigible to expect any brothel owner of that period to have preserved any contracts which are now between useless pieces of paper and potential liabilities. He has proven however that a contract was the regulatory norm, and since it seems no one can show documents attesting a downgrading of this norm since Ramseyer's documents, a conclusion that the norm has either vanished or a large percentage are breaking the norm is the one requiring substantiation (but I have yet to see a Ramseyer attacker suggest any, because their warped sense of where the burden of proof is eliminates their sense there is a need to provide proof).

particularly in light of the overwhelming amount of evidence that large numbers of these women were either coerced or tricked into it

Thanks to the attackers bringing up particular cases, for example Osaki, we get a glimpse as to how this "overwhelming evidence" was gathered, and it is extremely unsatisfactory and I cannot imagine any of those attackers willing to accept a case against themselves to be resolved using such "evidentiary standards".

Osaki said that she agreed, that she knew (at least in broad terms) what a prostitute is, and that she did not ask any questions (nor did she even claim any reasons for waiving her chance to ask questions). Given that she is ten, I find it reasonable that she realizes how much 300 yen is in the context of their society (it's more than a typical soldier would earn in a year). At that point, the contract (and that a contract is in oral form does not negate its validity, especially since Osaki would later claim she can't read) is valid. She agreed she was well-fed and even received 100 yen worth of net income per month. Without being able to read the fine details of the agreement, it seems in broad terms the brothel owner lived up to the enforceable parts of his part of the deal. As for the rest of her claims, they are just that, claims. No evidence has been brought to substantiate them, and in my opinion no right finding court will find the allegations substantiated.

Ramseyer's attackers rely on all the negative claims. First, they questioned Osaki's civil capacity. By normal standards, Osaki is above 6-7, so she has the ability to form intention (意思能力) and at 10 even the ability to take civic responsibility (責任能力). Nevertheless, as a minor any contract she consents to may be voidable, so bringing her brother in on it (yet another attacked point) is legally correct to avoid future problems. Any ideas about making an exception for sexual activities came later and cannot be held against the brothel owner or the State of Japan.

Next, they try and use the point that Osaki will insist she didn't fully understand the nature of the work as an excuse to declare any contract void ab initio. Really? Never mind that Osaki didn't do anything to substantiate this claim or the idea that such a claim is reasonable. The idea that the brothel owner is responsible for Osaki's ignorance is legally ignominable. In recent years, there are administrative law requirements to increase the burden of explanation on certain parties (consumer protection laws being a prime example). But they are recent innovations, and in the absence of any such administrative law at the time, her agreement must be seen to be good.

They will also point to the never going down debt. However, Osaki simply provides no evidence that this debt is the fault of the brothel owner. For example, she does not even accuse the owner of manifestly unreasonable calculations in her expenses. An alternate reading of this is that the Osaki family debt is just so big that even 100 yen (a huge sum in those days) per month cannot catch up. A sad story, but one of no fault to the brothel owner.

And she escaped. Ramseyer's attackers pointed to that part of the story ending with one of them having to go back as proof that they are not "free". First, it is clear Ramseyer meant "free" in a physical sense, and indeed the regime at their brothel was clearly lax enough for the physical escape to happen. As far as legality is concern, Ramseyer is taking the position their contract is valid, and thus all three escapees actually are bound by legal obligations and the brothel owner is allowed to take reasonable measures to ensure performance of the obligation. Further, it must be pointed out that the brothel owner actually took no action, and everything claimed by Osaki is a product of her imagination. Not an unreasonable imagination, perhaps, but nevertheless one.

In short, the way Dudden and Co processed Osaki's case is simply abominable, and if this is representative of how the "overwhelming amount of evidence" was assembled, I can only say most of it should be deemed invalid.

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

So Ram and I am talking about the cases of Korean women. How come those Korean women kept serving Japanese before 1945 and US/UN Korean troops after 1945. This is not whataboutery but the essence of this Korean comfort women issue and their fake narratives.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Revisionism is never an excuse. Plenty of documents to counter the prof's claims, who has strong connections with this country and honored with important Japanese awards.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

The only people who take this guy's "research" seriously are the Japanese government, which gave him some sort of award. Apparently he has never laid eyes on the documents on which his extrapolations are based, and is unable to read either Japanese or Korean.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

I think this arbitrary reversal of the burden of proof is the cause of many troubles.

This isn't an arbitrary reversal of anything, its the way ALL academic papers work. If an author is are to make an argument, the onus is on the author, being the one advancing that argument, to demonstrate its validity.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@kennyG

10yeatr old girl didn't deal with soldiers. She was Karayuki. Don't talk unless you have no idea.

You never tell between voluntary prostitutes and sex slaves. Here we are talking about sex slaves, not prostitutes.

Kim Bok-dong was 14 years old when she was forced to be a sex slave.

*She was one of many young women who were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military; a military that systematically recruited girls between the ages of 10 to 18 years of age from colonized and occupied countries from the 1930s until the end of World War II. From age 14, she was imprisoned in comfort stations for eight years across different countries in Asia.*

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Bok-dong

2 ( +10 / -8 )

...and on reviewers and editors to confirm its veracity before publishing it - otherwise you'll be able to find it archived at retractionwatch.com, the elephant graveyard of academic careers... It is clear that his claimed method could not have produced the results he said he had obtained.

" Scholars at Harvard and other institutions have combed though Ramseyer's sources and say there is no historical evidence of the contracts he describes."

"Harvard historians Andrew Gordon and Carter Eckert said Ramseyer “has not consulted a single actual contract” dealing with comfort women. “We do not see how Ramseyer can make credible claims, in extremely emphatic wording, about contracts he has not read,” they wrote.

Alexis Dudden, a historian of modern Japan and Korea at the University of Connecticut, called the article a “total fabrication” that disregards decades of research. ... Dudden counters that the article “does not meet the requirements of academic integrity.” “These are assertions out of thin air,” she said. “It’s very clear from his writing and his sources that he has never seen a contract.”

More than 1,000 economists have signed a separate letter condemning the article, saying it misuses economic theory “as a cover to legitimize horrific atrocities.” A separate group of historians of Japan issued a 30-page article explaining why the article should be retracted “on grounds of academic misconduct.”

This is the end of the line for this guy; if Harvard can get rid of Laurence Summers and Cornell West, they can certainly get rid of him.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Kim Bok-dong was 14 years old when she was forced to be a sex slave.

She was one of many young women who were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military; a military that systematically recruited girls between the ages of 10 to 18 years of age from colonized and occupied countries from the 1930s until the end of World War II. From age 14, she was imprisoned in comfort stations for eight years across different countries in Asia.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Bok-dong

So? Your proof is English Wiki? Give us all a break. Go and check how those brave Korean professors calling Kim Bok-dong and their proofs why they call her as such

-9 ( +5 / -14 )

@kennyG

So? Your proof is English Wiki? Give us all a break. Go and check how those brave Korean professors calling Kim Bok-dong and their proofs why they call her as such

Those few brave Korean professors, who are older than Ramseyer, also published a book claiming that a 10-year-old girl could make a free-will contract of dealing with dozens of soldiers every night for 8 years while imprisoned in a military camp, and the girl could get out at any time if the contract was breached. The book became a best seller in Japan, which is not surprising at all, considering those ubiquitous Japanese including you who are brainwashed by the Japanese history books and media censored and controlled by the Japanese government.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

This story has been going on for 50 years so what motivated the prof to publish a paper now?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I will always feel shamed at how Japan behaved during that era, and hope it can one day be forgiven by Korea and China and other Asian countries for its appalling crimes

7 ( +9 / -2 )

@Antiquesaving

So let me get this straight.

When a Japanese PM apologies it isn't enough because everyone didn't.

What isn't it enough? The answer is here:

https://youtu.be/ERGCprXBdUU

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

you are just like those emotional non-logical scholars who 're now bashing Prof. Ram without actually

presenting counterproofs but keep stingy attitude toward whatever presented by him or by myself here in

I've presented what I believe to be quite logical arguments and explanations for my position on Professor Ramseyer's paper in my comments on here without getting at all personal. If you disagree with them, fine, but don't accuse me of being "non-logical".

5 ( +6 / -1 )

A lot of people don’t seem to understand how named professorship works...

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@SJ

Yes, there have been some apologies from some parties in South Korea but the same can be said for Japan.

South Korea has never unequivocally acknowledged and apologised before the world.

Let me be crystal clear : I am absolutely on the side of these poor women. My point is that it is not only Japan that needs to atone for what has gone before.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

You lose a war. The women you paid, All of them are sex slaves forced against their will.

-You win a war. You never had comfort women, you never paid for prostitution. You never committed war crimes. Fact of life.

Thanks for the enlightening net uyoku perspective.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

@SJ

South Korea has spent decades controling the press and distorting it history books.

Even most scholars agree much if what is taught in South Korea as history whether it is from 80 years ago or from a 1000 years ago is not factual.

Embellishment of its history would be putting it lightly.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Simon FostonToday 12:46 pm JST

MASSWIPEToday  12:16 pm JST

To me, it's puzzling and kind of sad that Ramseyer actually sat down and wrote something like this in the twilight of his academic career.

Perhaps he's got his eye on some cushy post-retirement sinecure with a discreet ultranationalist think-tank like Nippon Kaigi. I imagine they'd be keen to lavish money and perks on friendly western academics willing to bolster their uyoku fantasy-land claims.

Apparently there's a private university near Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture that provides employment to foreign academics of a historical revisionist bent. He'd probably be a shoo-in for a job there. It's a bit of a come-down from Harvard though...

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Again I am not saying that many of these women were not forced into these places.

I only wonder who forced them.

Japanese Army or family?

This question comes up because by their own account, these women were later rejected by their families and by Korean society.

Had they been taken by force as happen in Europe in many of the German occupied countries.

The families of Those taken by force in Europe were relieved to find their daughters sisters, etc.. alive.

Those that willingly worked in those places for the German army found themselves ostracized by the family and society.

Something just doesn't add up.

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@rainydayToday 02:13 pm JST

This isn't an arbitrary reversal of anything, its the way ALL academic papers work. If an author is are to make an argument, the onus is on the author, being the one advancing that argument, to demonstrate its validity.

And I'll say he has done so. He has demonstrated, at least, that contracts are the norm. At that point, the presumption switches to the idea that there were contracts, which he further backed with at least some anecdotal evidence. What is utterly unreasonable is to insist on more proof than is reasonably available given how many years ago the events were. Basically, they are saying say a document from 1936 doesn't count, because the event happened in 1937, and despite providing no proof the legal situation changed between 1936 and 1937, they can insist it did, on the basis of ... nothing, really.

So who is not demonstrating the validity of their argument. Further, I'll note that thanks to the South Korean courts, the issue has been kicked out of history and back into the realm of law, and here, the plaintiffs, the ones advancing an argument for illegality, is clearly not Ramseyer. I think you might want to live up to your principles and demand a standard of proof sufficient that even if it would be you spitting out the money plus being denied the right to push your own position for your lifetime, you will accept.

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SINCERE

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Kazuaki ShimazakiToday  05:36 pm JST

@rainydayToday 02:13 pm JST

He has demonstrated, at least, that contracts are the norm. At that point, the presumption switches to the idea that there were contracts, which he further backed with at least some anecdotal evidence.

Hm. And yet:

Most alarming to historians is what they say is a lack of evidence in the paper: Scholars at Harvard and other institutions have combed though Ramseyer's sources and say there is no historical evidence of the contracts he describes.

Do you think you could comb through the same sources and come to a different conclusion?

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I leave some good reading for those who are interested in ever-lasting debates with at least fair sense of judgements. the 1st one is the most recommended but unfortunately it is in Japanese.

http://harc.tokyo/?p=1921

http://harc.tokyo/en/?p=152

Don't be like Alexis Dudden and Co., or all those stupid emotional self-proclaimed scholars who immediately reject any opinions outright if those are from what they judge as Japanese far-rights.

The contents do matters.

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IMO, one of the things that makes Harvard a great institution is its encouragement of discussions, of the free exchange of ideas. That is not to say that I agree with the professor who is the subject of this article, but by taking part in the discussion, we can better understand the subject, and develop our own ideas. Thus, on the subject of women who "chose" to become sex workers, I think that the choice is not a real one, when one is put into a man made situation, a situation made by the Imperial Japanese Army, in which the understood choice is to do something one might not normally do, or to starve.

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