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Apr 14, 2011

Messages from Japanese citizens to the world

by PhilLee — last modified Apr 14, 2011 10:27 AM
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Our colleagues at Friends of the Earth Japan are writing a blog on life after the earthquake and tsunami. They will be documenting how they, and fellow citizens, are rebuilding their lives and addressing some of the issues that have arisen as the country recovers from its biggest crisis since World War II.

Smile a cheerful smile !
Let today and again tomorrow be filled with your beaming smiles !!

Tell us about something wonderful you met today.
Tell us about something happy you got today.
Let your smiles be spread all over the world again today.

Your smile will surely put new life into all of us !!

 

Ikumi


I just happened to be at my cousin's home with my daughter when the first

strong earthquake hit North-west Japan. We felt quite a strong quake and I held the kids tightly until the quake stopped.

 

All the kids started to cry "Scary!!"

 

Calming down the kids, we couldn't stop watching TV... it was just like a

fiction disaster movie but it was all real. Also one of my best friends was

in Ishinomaki for a business trip, where had fatal tsunami hit. He came back

five days after the disaster by luck.

 

I couldn't sleep at all that night, I just prayed things would not get worse in

the midst of the frequent aftershocks.

 

If I were out for work on that day as usual and left my 22-month old

daughter at the child day care....? If something worst happened at the

Fukushima nuclear plant...?

 

Such thoughts kept giving me a shudder and I couldn't let my child away from

me even after the day care restarted.

 

It was extremely difficult to sort out the information for the first week

(it is still difficult though, and maybe getting worse), however,  I decided to follow my instinct as a mother and evacuate to my hometown in the south-west region!

 

So far, I'm satisfied with my decision to leave Tokyo for a while.

The biggest reason is now I'm free from the extraordinary tension in Tokyo.

I didn't notice that I was under such way-out stress until I left there.

 

Here I've got a sense of self-composure to join and organise some charity events. I just came back from the kids' English lesson and now I've become keenly aware that the smile of children always gives adults the right direction.

 

Last but not least at all, I truly appreciate so much for care and prayers from all over the world. Also, let me apologise for radioactive pollution from Fukushima. A lot of ordinary Japanese citizens feel that we shoulder part of the responsibility as we've neglected its danger in order to enjoy a semblance of quality of life. Nuclear is not a necessary evil any more but an absolute evil!

 

Shizuka

 

One Day in Fukushima City

by PhilLee — last modified Apr 14, 2011 03:33 PM
Filed Under:

Our colleagues at Friends of the Earth Japan are writing a blog on life after the earthquake and tsunami. They will be documenting how they, and fellow citizens, are rebuilding their lives and addressing some of the issues that have arisen as the country recovers from its biggest crisis since World War II.

one day in fukushimaOn April 11, I visited Fukushima City with two activists from Citizens Against Fukushima Aging Nuclear Power Plants (Fukuro-no-Kai). We met four members from Fukushima Citizen’s Conference for Reconstruction from Nuclear Disaster, a citizen’s group established immediately after the events of March 3. 

 

We spoke about how we can convey their voices to the Parliament and Government of Japan and the possibility of further collaboration. As they spoke under the stress, the sense of duty for immediate actions and the stress and the ongoing fear of radioactive contamination / exposure, each and every word weighed heavily. 

 

During the meeting, there was a very strong earthquake. We interrupted our meeting as the TV reported that Fukushima Daiichi had lost its power sources. Several strong earthquakes were felt afterwards, but people didn’t seem to care, they just continued talking. I think they have become accustomed to the quakes.

 

Fukushima Citizen’s Conference for Reconstruction from Nuclear Disaster have been monitoring the amount of radiation at several schools and kindergartens in Fukushima and the southern part of Miyagi. As a result, some high values were monitored in some playgrounds. They aim to request and pressure the local government to monitor thoroughly and conduct necessary actions by presenting the data monitored by the citizens. Their intention was partly realised, as Fukushima Prefecture began the radiation monitoring at more than a thousand schools. Citizens Against Fukushima Aging Nuclear Power Plants (Fukuro-no-Kai) have collaborated by providing the Geiger counters and utilising the monitoring of results at a national level.

 

During our meeting, the activists stressed the following:

 

- People in Fukushima have accepted Nuclear Power Plants, which meant that we put priority on money over life and safety. This disaster is a direct consequence of it. It is the time to reverse the order. We have been struggling to change our society, which does not want to move under severe pressure and stress. But we must change.  We would like to build a foundation of the future society for our children.

 

- We feel a sense of urgency when we see children playing in the rain without umbrellas.

 

- The government should evacuate the children from all schools where high amounts of radiation have been recorded. The governmental support is indispensable, thus, it must provide for the coordination of host communities and financial support”

 

- Independent monitoring by citizen's group is very important, but we do not have a sufficient number of Geiger counters and any measurement instruments for food and soil contamination. We need international support to continue our activism.

 

Further information

http://fukurou.txt-nifty.com/fukurou/2011/04/the-fukushima-c.html

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