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  • まだ続くジャパン・タイムズの慰安婦偏向発信 島田洋一(福井県立大学教授)
2015.02.16 (月) 印刷する

まだ続くジャパン・タイムズの慰安婦偏向発信 島田洋一(福井県立大学教授)

 2月13日、英字紙ジャパン・タイムズのオーナー的立場にある小笠原光隆氏(ニフコ取締役)を国基研企画委員会に招き、意見交換を行った。同氏は主に経営の対外面に携わり、編集には直接タッチしていないという。
 国基研の側からは、同紙の紙面に見られる「反日」偏向に関し、特に慰安婦問題を題材に、オーナーの注意を喚起した。
 ごく最近の事例としてあげたのが、今年1月29日付の下記記事である。タイトルは、「安倍、戦時性奴隷の記録の『改め』を約束」、筆者はミズホ・アオキ氏。スタッフ・ライターとあるからジャパン・タイムズの記者だろう。
 文の中ほどに、「慰安婦」の説明として、「戦前戦中期に、日本兵に性の提供を強いられた女性たちを指す婉曲表現」とある。誤解必至の言い回しだろう。また末尾に、「日本の主流派の歴史家たちは、……2万から20万人の女性が……日本が設けた戦時の軍売春施設で働くことを強いられたと述べている」との解説が付いている。実体不明の「主流派の歴史家」(mainstream historians)を持ち出して権威付けするこうした手法は、米紙などにもよく見られるものだ。記事では、安倍晋三首相や稲田朋美自民党政調会長の発言が引かれているが、上のごとき歪曲された語句説明や解説があるため、必然的に、これら政治家が「誤魔化し」や「隠蔽」「修正主義」に走っているような印象が形成されてしまう。
 われわれのこうした説明を聞いた小笠原氏は、実態の精査と責任ある対応を約束した。期待したいと思う。

Japan Times Jan 29, 2015
Abe pledges to ‘correct’ the record on wartime sex slaves by Mizuho Aoki Staff Writer Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged Thursday to increase efforts to alter views abroad on Japan’s actions in World War II by disseminating the “ correct” view, as he put it.
He cited a U.S. textbook that informs its readers of the thousands of women and girls who were forced to work in Japan’s wartime military brothels. This, he said, shows Japan must fight allegations that are not true. He said meekness is not valued in international society.
“I just looked at a document, (U.S. publisher) McGraw Hill’s textbook, and I was shocked,” Abe said during the Lower House Budget Committee. “ This kind of textbook is being used in the U.S., as we did not protest the things we should have, or we failed to correct the things we should have.
“Being modest does not receive recognition in the international community, and we must argue points when necessary,” he said, answering to a question from Tomomi Inada, the right-wing policy chief of the Liberal Democratic Party and a close ideological confidant of Abe.
Inada quoted from the book, which she said is used in California public high schools, a passage about the “comfort women,” Japan’s euphemism for the females forced to provide sex to Imperial Japanese soldiers before and during the war.
She said it reads: “The Japanese army forcibly recruited, conscripted and dragooned as many as 200,000 women ages 14 to 20 to serve in military brothels.”
The text goes on to report, she said, that the Japanese military massacred large numbers of comfort women to “cover up the operation.”
Inada expressed outrage that students in the U.S. are being taught things that are “completely against fact, that our ancestors were a group of rapists, murderers, and kidnappers.”
She added, “This is not an issue of the past. I believe this is an ongoing issue that, for example, violates the human rights of Japanese children living in the U.S.”
Earlier this year, the Foreign Ministry said the Japanese government asked the publisher to remove “inaccurate” descriptions, according to media reports.
Japan’s mainstream historians say no historical records survived the war that can pin down “the exact” number of women forced to work in the wartime military brothels Japan set up during its wars in the 1930s and ’40s, but their estimates range from 20,000 to 200,000.