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HOME  > Past issues  > 2022 February 16 - 22  > The phrase 'Japanese military' in 'Japanese military comfort women' delated from history textbooks
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2022 February 16 - 22 TOP3 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

The phrase 'Japanese military' in 'Japanese military comfort women' delated from history textbooks

February 20, 2022

Akahata 'current' column

The government applied pressure to rewrite accounts on the Japanese military comfort women issue in history textbooks which will be used in junior high schools and high schools in Japan from this coming April.

The phrase "Japanese military" was deleted from the wartime "Japanese military comfort women" system in the history textbooks and the expression "carted off by force" of Koreans was rewritten to "mobilized by compulsion". On the surface, each textbook publisher voluntarily modified the description, but it was the government itself which in effect had publishers alter the description.

Last April, the then Suga government approved a Cabinet decision which regarded the phrase "Japanese military" added to the phrase "comfort women" and the expressions "forced carting off" or "forced labor" of Koreans as inappropriate to be used in school textbooks. The government claimed that using the term "Japanese military" could cause misunderstanding among students that Koreans had been "forcibly taken to Japan by the Japanese military".

The government made this decision in response to a written inquiry submitted by "Nippon Ishin no Kai" Secretary-General Baba Nobuyuki who now heads the Ishin party. The party has since taken up the issue of comfort women accounts in history textbooks many times in the Diet based on the Cabinet decision. The Ishin party is actually working as a driving force to distort historical consciousness.

The Ishin party has begun to intervene in Constitution classes at elementary schools, arguing that the classes "intentionally instill the idea in children that the Constitution is something that must not be changed".

The glossing over of historical facts will end up in the destruction of peace. Teaching history to children based on historical facts is essential for them to learn from the past.
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