US military trade in trafficked persons and sexual servitude, part 2

trigger and content warning: discussion of violence including rape and forced examination which is related to confined spaces as well.

in this installment i examine the history of US military construction of prostitution in South Korea, briefly touching on the broader history of sex work and forced prostitution on the Korean peninsula leading up to that. i draw some parallels between the Japanese imperialist formal laws put into effect to regulate and control prostitutes drafted for their military occupying forces and how the US military utilized not only their infrastructure but their instrumentalization of women’s sexuality through more indirect means to facilitate a thriving practice of “privatized” prostitution after they abolished licensed prostitution. the mythology they have built as “liberators” over the more “uncivilized” Japanese colonial rule has been integral to accelerating the trade in persons, and it thrives present day with the same abuses and crimes done to the modern-day “comfort women”.


“The Construction of Military Prostitution in South Korea during the U.S. Military Rule, 1945-1948.” by Na Young Lee. Feminist Studies, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Fall, 2007), pp 453-481. this is the paper i mainly used. there is not a copy online, but please contact me if you do not have access elsewhere and would like to read it.

“Modern-Day Comfort Women: The U.S. Military, Transnational Crime, and the Trafficking of Women.” by Donna M. Hughes, Katherine Y. Chon, and Derek P. Ellerman for the Polaris Project, 2002. this i only used to make factual comparisons present day to some of the ideological components of its history. i will be relying on it more for the next installment.

expect to see the next installment next month, as i am limited by storage with libsyn! perhaps i will be able to sneak in some shorter episodes to make use of the rest that is available to me; this runs 35 minutes long. in any case it seems to be a good pace with regard to the amount of and type of information i’m compiling here. looking forward to any input or comments you may have.

here is part 1 in case you missed it.


  1. […] in this installment i cover the treatment of trafficked and enslaved women both in the states and in South Korea and what methods and deception are used to keep them in these situations. i start of with brief discussion of possible material aid to assist vulnerable people with that we can strategize for which segues somewhat from this short discussion that i posted after part 2. […]


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s