Imperial Japanese military paid Bali residents to hush up wartime sex slavery


The Imperial Japanese military used money to cover up its use of sex slaves on Bali during the war, a group of researchers from Kanto Gakuin University has said, citing a document found at the National Archives of Japan.

A Japanese chief warrant officer stationed on the Indonesian island during the war told a Justice Ministry investigation in August 1962 that he brought about 70 women to the military brothels.

According to the document, about 200 more women were also taken to the brothels.

He also said he was given about ¥700,000 to use to appease local residents. The officer said using money worked really well and there was not one complaint related to sex slavery.

The former Imperial Japanese Navy officer also said that what he feared most was the existence of these wartime brothels becoming known, the archive showed.

The document was found by a university group led by Hirofumi Hayashi, a professor of modern Japanese history.

“It is important as it confirms the military’s role mentioned in the Kono statement,” Hayashi said, referring to an official apology over wartime sex slavery made in 1993 by then-Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono.

Kono acknowledged the military’s role in coercing women — known euphemistically as “comfort women” — to provide sex for its soldiers before and during World War II.

The document was produced as part of a Justice Ministry investigation conducted to collect information in connection with war crime trials.

In November, Hayashi revealed he had found trial documents at the national archives relating to six cases heard before tribunals set up for Class-B and Class-C war criminals after the end of the war by China’s Nationalist Party and the Netherlands, then the colonial ruler of the Dutch East Indies (present-day Indonesia).

The materials had been kept by the Justice Ministry, but were transferred to the archives in 1999 or later.

  • Such evidence discredits any assertions that Japan was an innocent victim of US imperialism; but rather a society that has long been a perpetrator-victim culture extending right back to earlier times. In that context, I think one has to empathise with the Japanese perpetrators of the time. The problem is the collectivist pride that demands that Japan find value in this legacy. Sure there is value attached to it…but they seem compelled to only see good. Such is however the nature of collectivist values – they are context dropping. They do not invite explanation if it was not a part of your life. Of course, it doesn’t help if your govt engages in propaganda to conceal the facts. Japan needs honest reflection upon it. Most other nations have acknowledged and moved on from their imperial legacy. Its about time Japan did as well full-heartedly.

    • oh please

      you just know that? my old grandma once told me ‘ luwe soro adoh diajar jepang timbang di ajar belanda’ it was a javanese statementthat means being invaded by the netherland was a lot easier (eventhough they were cruel and practiced apartheid politics back then) than being invaded by the japanese, and its not the worst part yet,in 2012 0r 2013, i forgot, there’s a japanese movie,the title is murudeka or ‘merdeka’ in indonesia which story is about japanese ‘liberating’ indonesia,i cant stand watching that :(

      • Sorry to hear you were so affected by Japanese occupation. They were destined to be more brutal than the Netherlands because the Netherlands conveyed a regard for enlightened self-interest, as indicated above. I hope you are not defined by the Japanese, but find solitude or justice in the better values of the Netherlands. But why stop there. There is plenty of opportunity to be something better. No one can change the past; but maybe you can be part of the solution. Enlightened self-interest. Indonesia is one of the most corrupt nations in the world. Don’t miss the opportunity.

    • Jake

      “Most other nations have acknowledged and moved on from their imperial legacy”

      umm which nations?

      • Imperialism = a policy of extending a country’s power and influence through colonization, use of military force, or other means.

        You seem to be taking the argument that ‘some’ countries are at war to take territory. I would argue that “most” are there to defend rights. Now, I would place a caveat on that, in the sense that few have a coherent idea of rights, and under representative democracy, they are not accountable for the values they advance. I will however concede that mercantilism is well and truly alive, with the Asian countries manipulating their currencies, Japan/EU/US (previously protectionist) and US with IP through ‘free trade negotiations’ where negotiations entail some vested interests being traded off against others. But that’s hardly imperialism. Evolution was never going to be overnight; and its hellishly difficult in a representative democracy, where extortion, not reason, is the standard of value.