A Chinese girl from one of the Japanese Army’s ‘comfort battalions’ sits on a stretcher, awaiting interrogation at a camp in Rangoon. The uniform and insignia on the shoulder of the man next to her indicates that he is a Flying Officer in the Royal Air Force, 1945
The term “comfort women” was a euphemism used to describe women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II. Estimates vary as to how many women were involved, with numbers ranging from as low as 20,000 from some Japanese scholars to as high as 410,000 from some Chinese scholars, but the exact numbers are still being researched and debated. A majority of the women were from Korea, China, Japan and the Philippines, although women from Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan, Indonesia and other Japanese-occupied territories were used for military “comfort stations”. Stations were located in Japan, China, the Philippines, Indonesia, then Malaya, Thailand, then Burma, then New Guinea, Hong Kong, Macau, and what was then French Indochina.