DLBarch wrote:I'm very busy this weekend, but when I have a chance, I'll write a response. Not from scratch mind you, but a collection of links, since this is old hash from Gerry that has been chased down by the antacid of truth and logic long ago.
I could not agree more. One of the perplexing dynamics within the expat communities in Japan and Korea is that expats in Japan seem to overwhelmingly be card-carrying apologists for the country and members in good standing in the Chrysanthemum Club, while expats in Korea seem to be card-carrying members of the “I’m-white-and-privileged-but-still-manage-to-bitch-and-complaint-about-every-little-f*cking-thing club.The ones who got off easy after World War II were the Koreans, who were allied with the Japanese. The US and her allies allowed Koreans to play the victim as much as they did because they wanted to break up the Japanese Empire. However, no matter how Koreans may try to spin it, they did support the Japanese war effort.
The irony, of course, is that Japan has SO MUCH MORE to answer for historically, and yet has all but gotten a free ride on its disgraceful historical legacy.
The Japanese did not get a free ride, Mr. Barch. Millions of Japanese soldiers were killed, along with hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians.
The Japanese, the Chinese, the Russians, the Koreans, Australians, and Americans all committed war crimes, but it was only the Japanese and her allies who were convicted of them, and they were either executed or imprisoned. See HERE.
Japan lost all of its empire, and Japanese citizens in Korea and other places were forced to leave all of their proverty behind and return to Japan. On top of that, Japan paid a great deal in war reparations.
As for Korean comfort women, which we hear so much about, some may have been forced by Korean and Japanese pimps into the business, just as they are today, but most were probably just prostitutes looking to make an easy buck, just as they had done before and have done after.
I will acknowledge, though, that there were indeed Korean war criminals: they constituted some 1% of all the "Japanese" war criminals. There were also those who volunteered for military service, including Park Chunghee who later took over the country and was architect of its rise. But that does not negate that there were hundreds of thousands if not millions forced into hard labor, cruelty abounded, hundreds of thousands were killed at the hands of the Japanese or in Japanese military actions, hundreds of thousands of women were forced into sexual slavery, etc., etc.
And the idea that Korea — a country forcibly taken by Japan and then run with an iron fist by Japanese military leaders — could be described as a willing "ally" is just absurd.
If one has visited Yasukuni Shrine's Yushukan Museum (see here and here), it is striking how much Mr Bevers tale dovetails with that of Japan's right-wing apologists.
Oh, and DL Barch makes a valid point. In Korea, such people are called kvetchpats.