Japan that had coercively abducted and drafted the Korean people forced them into the hard labor in a barbarous manner which would make the slave labor in the ancient time blush.
The cruel and barbarous nature of the slave labor forced by Japan was, first of all, manifested by the intensity of maltreatment and exploitation of the Korean workers by the Japanese employers, as they were given a blank cheque even to kill the Korean workers.
A Japanese man who had been in charge of labor management at the Hashima coal mine in Nagasaki, Japan, testified that the Japanese in charge of labor management had had a virtual right to either take or spare the lives of Korean workers. This testimony alone gives a glimpse of the miserable life of the Korean workers at that time.
The cruel and barbarous nature of slave labor forced by Japan was also expressed by the fact that it was utterly an unpaid forced labor.
According to the testimonies made by the victims who had been forced into the slave labor at coal mines and construction sites, they were not paid for the reason that they could flee if they were paid, and they were told that their wages were saved and recorded in the savings passbook but it turned out to be an outright lie.
Some of wages were occasionally paid in the form of check or voucher but those could only be used at the shops within the working places, not the outside.
Last but not least, the cruel and barbarous nature of slave labor forced by Japan was illustrated by the extreme national discrimination.
The Japanese authorities posted the drafted Koreans only to the sectors of heavy and dangerous labor which the Japanese workers used to shirk.
They drove the Koreans into the sectors of dangerous and backbreaking labor such as blasting and removal of earth at the open working places in ore mines, coal mines, dam building of power plant, road construction etc.
Worse still, they didn’t hesitate to commit such atrocities as burying the Koreans alive or burning to death in case the Koreans were found incapable of working due to unbearable heavy work, malnourishment and diseases.
So much so that the Korean people’s wounds of bitterness caused by all sorts of inhumane treatment and slave exploitation by Japan remain unhealed yet.