On The Issues Magazine: Winter 1997: WAY OFF BASE The shameful history of military rape in Okinawa by Rick Mercier

Interviewed by Okinawa police and NCIS agents, he denied any involvement and attempted to provide an alibi — but it did not check out. “When it comes to sexual crimes, find more at https://absolute-woman.com/japanese-girls/okinawa-girls/ this victim-blaming extends throughout the Japanese justice system. Relations over the rights of Okinawans, prosecutors decline cases where the accused is a U.S. service member,” said Takazato. Takazato asserts that some of the problem lies with the Japanese judicial system, which frequently blames the victims of sexual assaults.

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  • This continued for almost the entire three-month duration of the battle.
  • While girls nursed, the boys (14-19) were split between two units.
  • Today, the cave is the focal point of the Himeyuri Monument, where bodies of some 200 students found in various caves after the fighting ended have been entombed.

The area was crowded with cars and pedestrians, and for half an hour, the 23-year-old American masturbated in front of women and approached drivers stopped at traffic lights. Inside these dark caverns, filled with suffering and filth and the stench of the living and the dead, the nightmare unfolded for the Star Lily girls. Her story begins in the years preceding World War II, when Japan was at war in China and Southeast Asia. Japanese schoolchildren were increasingly indoctrinated with militarism, emperor worship and their nation’s supremacy. You probably will want to try to get a hotel in Naha, if your goal is to party and maybe get laid choose a spot near one of the Okinawa singles nightlife districts we mentioned earlier. One thing we haven’t mentioned yet is that some of the nightlife may not be ‘gaijin friendly’ which means foreigners are not allowed to enter.

When Okinawa police tried to interview the sergeant again, he invoked his right to counsel, and then the Marine Corps Provost Marshal’s Office advised the police that the suspect would not answer any more of their questions. At this point, according to the NCIS report, Okinawa police decided to drop the case, and the suspect’s command also decided not to take any further action. One of the NCIS reports obtained via FOIA exemplifies how the U.S. military can shut down Japanese police investigations. It is a pattern familiar to Suzuyo Takazato, co-chair of the feminist group https://www.usavsengland.wiki/healthcare-consumption-and-cost-estimates-concerning-swedish-women-with-endometriosis/ Okinawa Women Act Against Military Violence and chair of the Rape Emergency Intervention Counseling Center Okinawa. At the time of publication, United States Forces Japan had not provided comment on the apparent omission of these cases from the SAPRO reports. “If only they could have survived a few more days,” she said.

When they exploded the space filled with white smoke and people began choking to death. https://www.windscreendistributors.co.za/nordic-women/ A soldier yelled to urinate into a rag and cover their mouths with it, which Ruri believes saved her life as she crawled on the ground listening to classmates cry and scream, calling out for their mothers, their friends, for water. When the Allies began hitting Okinawa on Mar. 23 with air raids and naval gunfire 222 student nurses and 18 teachers from the school were mobilized.

While the crime was committed away from a U.S. military base, the U.S. initially took the men into custody, on September 6. Although false rumors spread that the suspects were free to roam the base and had been seen eating hamburgers, the suspects were in fact held in a military brig until the Japanese officials charged them with the crime.

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This continued for almost the entire three-month duration of the battle. A historian commissioned by Okinawa Prefecture estimates that more than 10,000 rapes occurred during 84 days of fighting. After the battle was over and U.S. forces had established control of Okinawa, community bells were rung whenever U.S. troops were spotted approaching villages, and young women were hidden from soldiers. In the case of comfort women who survived the battle, many performed the same services for the new occupation forces that they had for the Japanese. A glance at the litany of crimes reveals a correlation between U.S. military action in Asia and violence directed against women in Okinawa. Eleven of the victims worked serving soldiers as bar hostesses or sauna attendants – occupations that helped keep the GIs happy and thus maintained their willingness to kill in other Asian countries. It was in this way that the military’s violence in Southeast Asia – often initiated in Okinawa – boomeranged back to Japan’s remote island prefecture, where Okinawan women became the victims of deadly attack.

Their families also paid monetary reparation to the family of the victim, a common practice in Japan.

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In January 2019, for example, a maid at a hotel within Kadena Air Base reported that an American civilian employee of Marine Corps Community Services had been masturbating while she cleaned his room. He had stood up, exposed his penis, and then, with what appeared to be semen on his fingers, asked her for a tissue. The NCIS tried to locate the suspect in Okinawa, but they could not find him because he had quit his on-base job and checked out of the hotel earlier than scheduled. The report makes no mention that Okinawa police were notified of the American employee’s harassment of the maid, and the NCIS closed the case without finding the suspect. Although SOFA applies throughout Japan, Okinawa, which hosts the bulk of the U.S. presence, suffers the most, explains Takazato, and it is women who repeatedly become the victims of these failures in military and Japanese justice. In response to public fury following the crimes in 1995 and 2016, the U.S. and Japan promised to make improvements to SOFA, but these changes turned out to be merely cosmetic. The U.S. said it would give “sympathetic consideration” when Japan requested the pre-indictment handover of service members suspected of heinous crimes and reduced the categories of contractors protected by SOFA.

Japan was losing the war of attrition which kept Haebaru and other military hospitals packed and on May 25, the 55th day of battle, the order was given to evacuate Haebaru. As the war progressed not in Japan’s favor and Allied forces came steadily closer to Okinawa, students began spending less time in class and more time in the field conducting manual labor and construction work for the military. Finally in November 1944 the Himeyuri students aged were pulled for nurse training by the army to augment the Okinawa Army Hospital. By the time the campus was destroyed in a January air raid classes had ceased entirely so students could focus on preparing for the coming battle.

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The Imperial soldiers managed the groups within the caves and instructed the girls on what to do. “We had to take care of the wounded soldiers and feed them. Once in a while, we were lucky and had vegetables, but very little,” explained Suetomi. At 11 years old, Suetomi dreamed of becoming an elementary school teacher. With encouragement from her teachers, Suetomi studied vigorously and became the only student from Taira Village to pass the entrance exam for the Okinawa First Girls’ High School. There were 400 hundred female applicants from all over Okinawa and only 40 were accepted. The schools motto, “Aim for the Development of Highly Intellectual and Well-Cultivated Women” inspired Suetomi to pursue her dream.

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