Consensus needed on ‘comfort women’ before demands made

By David Tzou

This is in response to the Post’s editorial entitled “Accepting legality key for Japan apology to reach heart” (12-30-15, p.4). In my humble opinion, Taiwan will go nowhere in its demand for Japan to also offer apology and compensation to Taiwanese “comfort women” unless people in Taiwan speak the same language on the issue.

We had a president who said the case of Taiwanese sex slaves during WWII was closed a long time ago. And a prominent businessman surnamed Hsu said these Taiwanese comfort women were all volunteers. There are still many others in Taiwan who share this pro-Japanese rhetoric. What a shame! There are people in Taiwan who, for one reason or another, eulogize what Japan had done in Taiwan during its occupation (they would rather say “rule”) of 50 years in terms of infrastructure, such as railroads and irrigation canals. A university classmate of mine is one of them. When I said that one of the main reasons why Japan took such a great effort was to facilitate its plunder of Taiwan’s natural resources for its war preparation against its neighbors, this classmate of mine was struck dumb. Taiwan was the biggest donator after Japan was heavily hit by an earthquake on March 11, 2011. However, when dealing and finally having reached the agreement with South Korea on an issue which has everything to do with Taiwan, Japan totally ignored the feelings of the people of this island nation. And it is most humiliating to Ma’s government which boasts having maintained the best relationship with Japan ever. When interviewed by CNN, a 90-year-old South Korean comfort woman said to the effect that the deal reached by her government and Japan was unacceptable and that she wanted the Japanese Emperor to come personally and kneel down before her. This is the kind of spirit which has made it possible for Japan to back down this far on the issue. A house divided will never stand. People in Taiwan had to come to a consensus before pitching demands to Japan. David Tzou Taoyuan