Halmonee, Your courage is beautiful.
The documents related to the ‘comfort women’ during the Japanese Colonial Period were mostly incinerated by the Japanese military and government at that time to avoid being charged with war crimes by the Allied Forces around August 15, 1945, when Japan surrendered. Among the records that have survived until the present, important documents are not being released by the Japanese government. Therefore, oral records such as testimonies of the surviving ‘comfort women’ have important significance for restoring history of the era.
Evidences such as the oral testimonies Young-sim Park from North Korea, who died in 2006, that tell the tale of her horrific experiences as a ‘comfort woman’ in such areas of China like Sung-san; reports and photographs taken by the US military and intelligence agencies of the US prison camp in Kunming in Yunnan, China; and the testimony of a former Japanese army leader Hayami Masanori who had participated in the Yunnan battle are all prime examples of records that have important historical value.
Beginning with Hak-soon Kim’s testimony in August 1991, public testimonies of the survivors not only contributed in restoring the honor of the victims but also is the force that has made the victims into the living proof of history itself and has allowed them to become vigilantes for peace.