For the war effort, the Japanese government recruited female civilians, including Japanese and Koreans, to work in factories, e.g., make munitions, etc. (Ref. 3) They were called teishintai (“Volunteer [labor] Corps”; chongsindae in Korean), and these ‘recruits’ did include young girls (e.g., toward the end of the war, Japanese girls and women between ages 12 and 39 were mobilized for this labor force). The exact number of female Japanese and Koreans recruited into the Volunteer Corps is unknown, but the number “200,000” was reported by certain sources. Unfortunately, the Volunteer Corps was conflated with comfort women by certain newspapers (e.g., Asahi Shimbun) and others, and became the basis for the fallacious statement: “200,000 girls were ‘forced’ to become ‘sex slaves.’“
Why is there a belief that very young girls were conscripted to become comfort women?
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