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韓国サイト Q&A No.6

従軍慰安婦

Q.What is the total number of forcibly recruited comfort women?


A.Comfort women could be found in every Japanese military camp. However, it is impossible to confirm the exact number of them because the Japanese military destroyed related document for fear of being prosecuted for war crime. The number is just estimated based on the data which show the ratio of soldiers to comfort women. According to official documents of Japan, the USA and the Netherlands, China, Hong Kong, Macao, French-ruled Indochina, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, British-ruled Borneo, Dutch-ruled East Indies, Burma, Thailand, East New Guinea, Okinawa Islands, Okasawara Islands, Hokkaido, Kurile Islands and Sakhalin have been confirmed to have military comfort stations. A memoir of a Japanese veteran says that then-Japanese ruled Truk Island, Korol Island, Saipan Island, US-ruled Guam and India-ruled Nicobar Islands also had comfort stations for soldiers. It is safe to say that where there were military camps, there were comfort stations.

Zensiro Hara, then army officer of the Japanese Kanto Army, estimated the required number of comfort women at 20,000, taking into consideration the sexual needs and financial situation of 800,000-strong combat forces, which is translated into one comfort woman per 40 soldiers. At the time, Hara went to the Colonial Joseon Government General to demand to recruit 20,000 women.
According to Japanese military record, the Joseon Government General mobilized the police and riot police officers to recruit about 3,000 women from June to August, 1941. (Note 4.E.) According to the record by medical officer Ginbara of the Japanese Army, there was an instruction to recruit comfort women in the ratio of 100 soldiers to 1 comfort woman. (Note 4.D.)
Professor Yoshimi Yoshiaki said that the turnover rate of comfort women, not the ratio, can make a big deviation. In other words, it is inferred that the turnover rate was high due to death, suicide, escape, disease and contract expiry. Japan sent about 8 million soldiers and army civilian employees to battle fields from 1937 to 1945. Based on this, the number of comfort women forcibly sent to the battle fields is estimated at around 80,000 to 200,000. It is presumed to be impossible to recruit such a large number of women without having then-Japanese ruled Korea and Taiwan into account.

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