Local Group Commemorates WWII ‘Comfort Women’


Community members march through from the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum to Thanks-Giving Square as part of the International Memorial Day for Comfort Women event on Sunday in downtown Dallas. (Jason Janik/Dallas Morning News

A group of Dallas-area women headed by Coppell resident Sinmin Pak has been spotlighting the history of “comfort women” during World War II and contemporary issues regarding human trafficking.

Pak’s advocacy group, Unforgotten Butterflies, organized in support of the newly-recognized International Memorial Day for Comfort Women this past Sunday.

The group marched through downtown Dallas and then showcased a film titled Spirits’ Homecoming, Unfinished Story, a movie that highlights the horrors experienced by the hundreds of thousands of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean “comfort women” forced into sex slavery by the Japanese military in the 1930s and 1940s.

These women were forced to provide sexual services to Japanese soldiers inside military brothels. Many were enslaved as children. The UN’s Global Tribunal on Violations of Women’s Human Rights estimated that 90% of these “comfort women” did not survive these brothels.

“Human rights issues continue, and when we can communicate to and educate our kids — even adults — it informs us, it makes us more human and it creates more empathy and compassion,” said Tracy Fisher, a member of Unforgotten Butterflies and elected Coppell ISD trustee.

The group marched on Sunday as part of an event at the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum. Carrollton Mayor Steve Babick announced that August 14 would be recognized as “Comfort Women Memorial Day.”

Pak and the Unforgotten Butterflies not only aim to remind people of the horrors that “comfort women” experienced but also to bring awareness to the sexual assault and abuse that continues to occur today.

“I don’t know how we can stand still and still allow this to happen,” she stated. “It doesn’t matter if it’s during war or not; the fact that somebody is being violated — that in itself is something that we should be using our voice to speak up about.”

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5 months ago

Thank you for covering our event and taking interest in all “Comfort Women.” They should not be forgotten nor erased. American POW nurses were also violated. “Comfort Women” are not just Asian females. There were Dutch, Australian, Canadian, British, etc… women who were also forced and coerced to become “Comfort Women.” Never Forge. Never Again. Justice for All “Comfort Women.”