This guy should have known better than to make these type of comments in South Korea:
Sunchon National University
Sunchon National University has dismissed one of its professors for making derogatory comments about Korean women who were forced into sexual slavery for the Japanese military during World War II.
Six out of seven members of the university’s disciplinary committee in the city of Sunchon, South Jeolla Province, chose the severest level of punishment for the professor, whose name is withheld, on Wednesday. He was charged with failing to fulfill his duty faithfully and failing to preserve his vocational dignity.
University President Park Jin-sung apologized for “those hurt by the blasphemous comments made by our school professor, especially the women who had gone through the ordeal in Japan.”
He said the school suspended the professor after the incident was reported in April and formed a task force to investigate the matter.
The professor, 56, from the university’s teachers’ college, made the comments during a lecture. He said many of the women, also known as “comfort women,” “probably knew that they were going to sexually serve the Japanese soldiers and thus voluntarily left for Japan. ” He also said all the women were “crazy about Japan and would not have gone there if it weren’t for their (sexual) passion.” [Korea Times]
You can read the rest at the link, but he is not the first academic fired for making comments against the comfort women dogma. Professor Park Yu-ha at Sejong University was arrested for defamation for writing a book that takes a balanced look at the comfort women issue. She was fortunately found innocent.
The Korean public likes to think that all the comfort women were girls sleeping in bed and kidnapped by evil Japanese soldiers while the Japanese rightists like to think they were all willing prostitutes. Both historical narratives are untrue if one really looks at the history.
What Professor Park wrote about is the same historical narrative that American Sarah Soh wrote about in her book “The Comfort Women: Sexual Violence and Postcolonial Memory in Korea and Japan“. In the book Soh provides documented evidence that most of the Korean women put into the comfort women system were sold by Korean brokers. The actual kidnapping of Korean women by Japanese soldiers would be a very rare occurrence when the broker system made so many of these women readily available. This does not absolve the Imperial Japanese from responsibility since they ran the comfort woman system that provided the demand for the Korean brokers to meet. To make even worse is that many of these girls were teenagers when sold into prostitution. I see no way that a young teenager should be considered a willing prostitute. Especially when many girls were sold by their families into prostitution for money due to the extreme poverty. This was actually a practice that was going on well into the US military era in South Korea.
It is pretty clear that the comfort women issue is not black and white, but has more nuance to it then each side is willing to admit. Ultimately the Imperial Japanese government was responsible for the actions of the Korean brokers that supplied the majority of the Korean girls. The Imperial Japanese had to have known how young the girls were and the unethical and deceptive actions the Korean brokers were taking to make them available to the Japanese military. There is no need to rewrite the history of what happened to the comfort women when the truth is bad enough.