Indonesia: Comfort Women by Jan Banning

Image 4 of 21
< Prev Next >
Ronashi (born 1931) was one of tens of thousands of 'comfort women' forced into prostitution by the Japanese military during World War II..As a 13-year-old girl, Ronashi was picked up on her way home from school by a soldier nicknamed 'Sideburns' and locked up in nearby barracks. There she was raped systematically for three months by Sideburns and his pal. Her father visited the barracks several times and in vain offered himself as free labour in exchange for his daughter's release. Not until the end of the war was Ronashi, very thin by then, released. "I had to crawl home, I couldn't even walk anymore, I hurt all over." Immediately after the war she underwent surgery for her internal injuries. "I only married late because I first wanted to think. My wounds hadn't healed yet, I was afraid, I wanted to get better first." She has been married five times, divorced several times after just a few months and has never been able to bear children. "I did get injections from the doctor, but it's God who determines whether you have children, not people." Since the death of her last husband she lives alone, in a small hut, with a few chickens and a goat. "When rice is planted or harvested, I work in the fields, otherwise I sell baked cassavas or bananas. And the grandchildren of my aunt also sometimes give me a little rice.".