We are hosting the “May We Speak International Film Festival” to promote the brutality of Japanese war crimes, including the “comfort women” issue. This festival won’t be a famous event with renowned directors like Steven Spielberg and Hollywood stars in attendance. However, it will be an event where young Koreans will show their talent for informing the world about the true history of Japanese imperialism.
今どき挺身隊と慰安婦の混同など意図的なミスリードだろう （A girl's story）
「May We Speak 国際映画祭の映画を学校や職場でご覧下さい」「さあ、席にお着きなって、本当の歴史をご鑑賞下さい」
Do you know about Holocaust? You probably do. But, have you heard of the “comfort women”? It doesn’t ring a bell in? It’s okay. We are here to introduce you to the topic of Japanese military sex slaves, commonly known as “comfort women.”
“We got there in a truck, escorted by military officers. Over 100 soldiers were lined up in front of each door.”
“When a soldier came into my room, I screamed in fear and tried to escape.”
“The comfort station manager slapped my face until my nose started bleeding, and locked me in a small room with no food.”
“I was nothing more than an animal. If the Japanese soldiers saw me as a human being, they couldn’t have done what they did to me.”
These are the testimonies of the victims, who were taken to Japanese military brothels during their youth and are now elderly women. The comfort women system is one of the worst war crimes that happened in Asia, while the Holocaust was occurring in Europe. During WWII, over 200 thousand women were taken from 10 different Asian countries, including Korea, and forced to serve as sex slaves for the Japanese military. It was an unprecedented case of government-organized systematic rape.
The issue of comfort women is not as widely known as the Holocaust, but it was also a terrible crime against humanity that must be remembered and prevented. If this piece of history is ignored and forgotten by future generations, it might be repeated sometime in the future. The war ended with the defeat of Germany and Japan. The German government took full responsibility for the Holocaust, apologized, and compensated the victims of its atrocities.
In contrast, the Japanese government still denies the existence of the “comfort women,” and refuses to offer any apology or compensation. In Korea alone, there are still around 60 surviving victims from the comfort women system. For over 20 years since 1992, those victims have held a protest every Wednesday in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul, asking for an official apology from the Japanese government. This protest made it into the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest protest on a single specific issue.
In July 2007, the U.S. House of Representatives passed House Resolution 121, which was a resolution demanding a formal apology from the Japanese government for its coercion of young women into sexual slavery. In November 2007, the European Parliament also passed a resolution demanding that Japan not only to make an official apology but also to compensate the victims. Despite such international pressure, Japan refuses to listen.
Now, young Koreans are standing up as 21st century special envoys to The Hague . We are hosting the “May We Speak International Film Festival” to promote the brutality of Japanese war crimes, including the “comfort women” issue. This festival won’t be a famous event with renowned directors like Steven Spielberg and Hollywood stars in attendance. However, it will be an event where young Koreans will show their talent for informing the world about the true history of Japanese imperialism.
Watch movies that are submitted to the “May We Speak International Film Festival” at your home, school and work. Share our movies with your family and friends. We also welcome your submissions to our film festival website. Now, please be seated and tune in to true history.