Saturday, January 21, 2017

What the “Girl Statue” gazes at – “South Korea-Japan agreement” on former sex slaves and questions on Japan’s colonial rule and war responsibility

 During this new-year holiday period, Japan’s Abe Administration’s perception of history and diplomatic attitude continued to be questioned. Prime Minister ABE Shinzo visited the Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, the US at the end of last December, proudly saying, “We want to show our power of commemoration and reconciliation to Japan, the US and the world”, after the summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin for the “final postwar settlement”. During the same period, Japan’s Defense Minister INADA Tomomi visited the controversial Yasukuni Shrine, or “war shrine”. Abe never referred to the war of aggression against Asia. More than a year has passed since the South Korea-Japan foreign ministerial meeting that confirmed a “final and irreversible solution” on the “comfort women” issue. While more and more Korean citizens demanded the “South Korea-Japan agreement”, which disregards the victims of the sex slavery, be discarded, a new “Girl Statue”, or a peace monument, was built in front of the Consulate General of Japan in Busan, South Korea. However, the Japanese Government arrogantly demanded the South Korean counterpart to immediately remove the statue and withdrew its ambassador to the country to Japan. In addition, the Japanese Government has been a yes-man to the US Military in Japan to approve the restart of Osprey (a.k.a. “widow maker”) flights and airborne fuel supply, in defiance of Okinawa Prefecture and its local residents. The hardline stances of both the US and Japanese Governments have continued, as seen in the construction of a helipad in the Takae district and a new military base in the Henoko district in Okinawa. (NISHINAKA Seiichiro)
 Picture : “Girl Statue”in front of the Consulate General of Japan in Busan, South Korea



Documentary “Occupy Shanti Indian Restaurant” – Now DVD available

 This documentary that was shown at the Labor Festa in Tokyo last December was very popular. It depicts the situations of struggling migrant workers around us. Now DVD of the documentary is available. It will be shown at the Shimo-Takaido film festival in Tokyo this April. OKANO Naomi, a film critic, says, “Migrant workers who have language problems and IBUSUKI Shoichi, their lawyer who supports them without a down payment of legal fees, are thoroughly covered. The producer of the documentary struggles together, encourages them and stands in solidarity with them as a worker. Impressive is that the producer takes the moment of the formation of a trade union they once refused and depicts their activities vividly. This documentary is a precious work that clearly shows how tough lives of migrant workers are in Japanese society and how we fight together with them”. (Video Press)

DVD頒布開始!~ドキュメンタリー映画『オキュパイ・ シャンティ~インドカレー店物語』

昨年12月のレイバーフェスタで初上映された『オキュパイ・シャンティ』は大好評でした。身近に存在する外国人労働者がどんな状況に置かれているか、伝わってきます。DVDの頒布を開始しましたので集会・学習会にご活用ください。また4月の下高井戸シネマ映画祭での上映も決定しました。批評家の岡野奈保美さんはこう評しています。「…カメラは言葉もよく通じない移民労働者たちと、かれらの悩みを聞き、着手金ゼロで奔走する指宿昭一弁護士に密着取材していく。カメラはかれらに問いかけ、いっしょに怒り、悩み、励まし、同じ労働者として連帯する。 感動的なのは、一度は拒んだ組合結成をかれらがそれしかないと立ち上がる組合結成の瞬間や、委員長を選ぶシーンなど生き生きとした躍動を写し撮っていることだ。このドキュメントは、日本社会で働く移民労働者の実態を炙り出すとともに、かれらといっしょにどうたたかうかを考える貴重な作品だ」。(ビデオプレス)