|Rep. Mike Honda|
Seventy years past, Lee was one of over 200,000 so-called “comfort women” enslaved for sex by the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II.
However, during his address, Abe offered little acknowledgement of the wrongs by his country generations ago and the omission raised the ire of Honda,
“It is shocking and shameful that Prime Minister Abe continues to evade his government’s responsibility for the systematic atrocity that was perpetrated the Japanese Imperial Army against the so-called ‘comfort women’ during World War II, by not offering an apology during his speech today,” Honda said in a statement Wednesday.
Honda had previously called for Abe to issue an apology in a op-ed.
Although Abe did not explicitly issue an apology for the wartime atrocities against women during the war, he called for strengthening women’s rights in the region. But it wasn’t enough for Honda, who added, “without acknowledging the sins of the past, history will repeat itself.”
Honda, himself, also suffered during World War II, spending time during his youth in a Japanese-American internment camp in Colorado.