Author Topic: Coverup and Denial in Japan - by Stephen Lendman  (Read 6713 times)

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Offline bigron

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Coverup and Denial in Japan - by Stephen Lendman
« on: March 16, 2011, 09:40:56 am »
Coverup and Denial in Japan


by Stephen Lendman


March 15, 2011
http://uruknet.com/?p=m75886&hd=&size=1&l=e


Discount all official government statements and major media reports repeating them instead of demanding expert, unbiased views.

Officially, Japan's nuclear emergency is under control and contained. In fact, lies substitute for truths, denial for reality, and managed news for honest reporting.

Point of fact: Besides its catastrophic quake, tsunami, destructive aftershocks, and resulting humanitarian crisis, Japan is experiencing a developing nuclear catastrophe, the full extent not known until independent sources reveal it.

On March 12, a huge explosion rocked Fukushima's Unit 1 reactor. Reports said its containment chamber was intact. Independent experts are skeptical, believing at least some damage occurred, perhaps a major breach now covered up. Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) blamed a core meltdown for the explosion, releasing hazardous atmospheric radioactive cesium-137 and iodine-131.

Greenpeace said:

"This proves once and for all that nuclear power cannot ever be safe. Japan's nuclear plants were built....to withstand natural disasters, yet we still face potential meltdown" disaster.

Nuclear expert Helen Caldicott said atmospheric cesium-137 and iodine 131 releases pose grave human health risks. "All of these substances can cause cancer and genetic diseases either in the near or long term." Why are "we mad enough to introduce this disastrous form of energy into our lives," knowing major catastrophes are inevitable, especially in earthquake prone areas like Japan, California, and other vulnerable locations, many throughout the world.

Caldicott added in an email to this writer that the situation is "beyond terrifying!!!" Moreover, downplaying the potential severity is outrageous, irresponsible and criminal. Literally, millions of lives potentially are at risk. Further, nothing short of shutting down and dismantling all nuclear facilities is crucial. They're all ticking time bombs waiting to explode, especially ones in seismically active areas.

On March 12, nuclear expert Karl Grossman's CounterPunch article headlined, "Don't Worry, It's Just a Little Radiation," saying:

Lies always follow major events like Fukushima. Saying modest atmospheric radiation levels won't have long-term environmental and human health effects is deceitfully false. Grossman quoted the US Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI - the industry trade group) stating:

"The Japanese prime minister and the industry safety agency say all plants in the country are safe and that there has been no radiation release from any reactors," when, in fact, NISA confirmed it with few details.

On March 13, NEI said there's no danger of a Chernobyl-like event, when, in fact, the threat potential far exceeds it. "Japanese nuclear facilities are designed to withstand powerful seismic events," it said. In fact, substantial damage occurred, its full extent not revealed.

Like Japan's prime minister and other government officials, NEI is paid to lie to protect powerful member interests like General Electric. Its Nuclear Energy division is a major producer of "advanced reactor technologies" and related services.

Moreover, claiming failsafe systems prevent nuclear disasters is patently false, Grossman saying:

"In fact, like any machinery, nuclear plants can - and regularly do - undergo accidents. The big difference with atomic energy: the malfunctions can end up killing large numbers of people and impact other life as well."

At worst, however, entire countries, regions or planet earth may be catastrophically harmed. Potentially, Japan's meltdown triggered that type event. Full scale damage control is concealing it, or at least the possibility that it's happening.

Chernobyl's disaster, in fact, affected the entire Northern Hemisphere, killing almost a million people. Multiple Japanese reactor meltdowns may far exceed it, Grossman saying:

"Nuclear power plants are, in fact, life-threatening wherever they are - they represent the most dangerous way to boil water ever devised." Readily available "(w)ind, solar and geothermal energy and other forms of safe, clean power would" prevent the deadly fallout from Japan's catastrophe, threatening the entire Pacific rim and beyond, but using them would be bad for business. Companies like GE have plenty of clout to prevent it, placing bottom line priorities above humanity's survival.

Second Nuclear Explosion Rocks Japan

On March 14, Reuters headlined, "Japan grapples with nuclear crisis," saying:

A second explosion blew off a containment facility's roof. A third reactor's cooling system failed. Officials claimed no reactor's been harmed. As explained above, independent experts are skeptical, believing powerful explosions damage or destroy everything nearby, what official reports won't reveal.

As a result, "Japan scrambled to avert (multiple) meltdown(s) at a stricken nuclear reactor on Monday."

Live NHK video showed the reactor facility's skeletal remains, thick smoke rising and spreading. Multiple injuries were reported. Workers inside were exposed to extremely high radiation levels endangering their lives.

Thousands of quake/tsunami-related deaths are confirmed. Tens of thousands are missing and unaccounted for. In Otsuchi, ICRC's Patrick Fuller described "a scene from hell, absolutely nightmarish." As many as 10,000 people, half the town's population, may have perished, besides many others in Northern Japan.

Spreading Atmospheric Radiation

Massive atmospheric radiation is feared, frantic Fukushima engineers trying to contain it. Multiple reactors are affected. Full scale official and media damage control efforts are suppressing bad news. The IAEA said Japan added a third troubled plant, Onagawa, to others under a state of emergency because of failed cooling systems and radiation releases. Later reports suggested Onagawa experienced no leaks, whether or not true. Be skeptical.

On March 13, New York Times writers David Sanger and Matthew Wald headlined, "Radioactive Releases in Japan Could Last Months, Experts Say," stating:

Flooding two stricken reactors with corrosive seawater (rendering them henceforth inoperable) is "a desperate step to avoid a much bigger problem: a full meltdown," perhaps ongoing but concealed. Japanese officials and media reports call it "partial." Radioactive steam is being released to relieve pressure, spreading atmospheric poison.

A widening area is being contaminated. Tens of thousands evacuated "may not be able to return to their homes for a considerable period," perhaps never, depending on contamination levels. "More steam releases also mean (spreading contamination) across the Pacific...." Discount America's Nuclear Regulatory Commission saying:

"Hawaii, Alaska, the US Territories, and the US West Coast are not expected to experience any harmful levels of radioactivity."

False! Atmospheric winds and rain potentially may contaminate planet earth, some areas more than others. A worried unnamed official said, "under the best scenarios, this isn't going to end anytime soon," or perhaps well.

Another concern affects some Japanese reactors plus others in France and Germany. They use mox (mixed oxide) fuel, containing reclaimed plutonium - the most hazardous known substance. When ingested, a tiny spec can kill. Larger inhaled atmospheric amounts could devastate whole cities. Two damaged Fukushima units use it, Nos. 2 and 3.

Sanger and Wald added:

"Inside the plant....there was deep concern that spent nuclear fuel that was kept in a 'cooling pond' (began) letting off potentially deadly gamma radiation. Then water levels inside the reactor cores began to fall. (An estimated) top four to nine feet of nuclear fuel in the core and control rods appear to have been exposed to the air - a condition that" caused melting, potentially a "full meltdown" that may, in fact, be happening.

Using corrosive seawater may, in fact, not work. Because of high containment vessel pressure, forcing it inside is like "trying to pour water into an inflated balloon," according to one unnamed source. It's not clear how much water is getting in and whether cores are covered. Damaged gauges make knowing it impossible, so doing it is seat-of-the-pants, a "Hail Mary" attempt at best.

Operating 55 nuclear facilities, Japan relies heavily on them for electricity, at present 30%, a figure expected to reach 50% by 2030 if planned additions are completed.

Tokyo Electric Power's (TEPCO) Shoddy Maintenance and Safety Record

On March 12, Los Angeles Times writers Mark Magnier and Barbara Demick headlined, "Japanese fearful as nuclear crisis builds," saying:

"(M)any Japanese don't trust (what) authorities (tell) them" anymore. Moreover, they "have an uncomfortable relationship with nuclear power" and TEPCO, Fukushima's operator.

"As many people (know, it) has a history of not being forthcoming about nuclear safety issues, particularly those surrounding earthquake-related dangers."

In 2003, its 17 nuclear plants were temporarily shut for falsifying safety inspection reports. In 2006, it was learned that its coolant-water data at two plants were falsified in the 1980s. Critics have long expressed deep concern about safety at many of Japan's nuclear facilities," some dating from the 1970s and 1980s.

Fukushima especially "has long been on critics' radar, but so has the Hamaoka plant," 100 miles southwest of Toyko on an active fault line. In fact, Kobe University Professor Emeritus Katsuhiko Ishibashi said:

"I have been warning about Japan's possibility of a genpatsu shinsai - a nuclear disaster," explaining that many nuclear facilities are hazardously located in seismically unsafe locations. No one listened.

On March 13, Kyodo News said another cooling system failed at Tokai's No. 2 facility, 120 km from Tokyo. Emergency measures were taken. Unreliable reports say a backup pump and cooling system are operating. Fukushima's No. 1 and 3 reactors experienced meltdowns. Kyodo called its No. 2 "troubled," raising fears of the worst there, besides what's happening at Tokai No. 2 and perhaps other quake/tsunami affected reactors.

Third Reactor Explosion Rocks Japan

On March 14, New York Times writers Hiroko Tabuchi, David Sanger and Keith Bradsher headlined, "Japan Faces Potential Nuclear Disaster as Radiation Levels Rise," saying:

"Japan's nuclear crisis verged toward catastrophe" after a third explosion rocked another Fukushima reactor, "damag(ing) the vessel containing the nuclear core (spewing) large amounts of radioactive material into the air, according to the statements of Japanese government and industry officials."

Even top officials who lie admitted "a very high risk" exists. In fact, it's well beyond "risk." It's reality, affecting all Japan, the Pacific rim, and beyond. Clearly, a major catastrophe is unfolding.

What more is needed to demand an immediate shutdown and replacement of all nuclear facilities worldwide. Their continued use threatens all humanity.

A Final Comment

Of any magnitude, meltdowns aren't minor, and no structures are earthquake or tsunami-proof. When most intense, Mother Nature prevails. Images of affected Japanese areas and damaged reactor facilities offer proof, besides the potentially massive, widespread human toll.

Sunday, March 13, on the Progressive Radio News Hour, Karl Grossman explained Japan's "nuclear emergency," discussed in detail on his blog site, accessed through the following link:
http://karlgrossman.blogspot.com/2011/03/japan-nuclear-emerg
ency.html

Nuclear plants use radioactive material for heat to generate electricity. Huge amounts are needed. To prevent overheating, "vast amounts of coolant are required, up to a million gallons of water a minute." Without it, meltdowns occur, because "in less than a minute," temperatures can reach 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit - hot enough to "burn through the cement bottom of the nuclear plant" to earth beneath.

Nuclear scientists call it the "China syndrome," meaning "it descends to the water table underlying a plant. Then, in a violent reaction, molten core and cold water combine, creating steam explosions and releasing a plume of radioactive poisons."

Where it spreads depends on wind velocity, direction, and rain. Nuclear reactors are vulnerable, life-threatening, and "the most dangerous way to boil water ever devised." Deactivating them is essential, especially when safe alternatives exist, so far spurned to pad bottom lines for companies like GE, concerned about profits, not human safety.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.


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Offline Satyagraha

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Re: Coverup and Denial in Japan - by Stephen Lendman
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2011, 10:20:05 am »
27 Signs That The Nuclear Crisis In Japan Is Much Worse
Than Either The Mainstream Media Or The Japanese Government Have Been Telling Us

http://www.prisonplanet.com/27-signs-that-the-nuclear-crisis-in-japan-is-much-worse-than-either-the-mainstream-media-or-the-japanese-government-have-been-telling-us.html
The Economic Collapse
March 16, 2011

How much of a threat is the nuclear crisis in Japan?  That question is on the minds of millions of people around the globe tonight.  Unfortunately, the Japanese government and the mainstream media have both been doing their best to downplay this crisis. 

Even though there have been massive explosions at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility, authorities in Japan have still been very stingy with information and they keep insisting that the situation is under control.  But the situation is not under control.  In fact, it just seems to get worse with each passing day. 

Radiation levels are now incredibly high at the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex and the radiation cloud is starting to spread.  Radiation levels in Tokyo are already 10 times above normal levels, and there are reports in the international media that some people have begun to flee the city.  It is imperative that the Japanese government tell the truth about what is going on because this could potentially affect the health of millions of people.  There are over 12 million people in the city of Tokyo alone.  If this nuclear crisis continues to get worse it could potentially end up killing more Japanese than the tsunami just did.

Yes, things really are that serious.

We are not just talking about a repeat of Chernobyl.
We are possibly talking about “many Chernobyls”.

It is somewhat understandable that the Japanese government and the mainstream media do not want to panic the public, but the reality is that people need the truth about what is going on.

Unfortunately, it is not likely that the Japanese government or the mainstream media are going to “change their stripes” overnight, so in order to try to get an idea of what is really going on we need to look at the clues.

Sometimes it is much more important to watch what people are doing rather than what they are saying.

For example, a significant number of foreign governments are now evacuating personnel from Tokyo.
Why would they be evacuating if there was no threat?

Posted below are 27 signs that the nuclear crisis in Japan is much worse than either the mainstream media or the Japanese government have been telling us.  When you take all of these clues and you put them together it really does paint a frightening picture….

#1 Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan is urging all people living within 30 kilometers of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility to stay indoors.

#2 Andre-Claude Lacoste, the head of France’s Nuclear Safety Authority, says that the containment vessel surrounding the No. 2 reactor at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex is “no longer sealed“.

#3 Radiation levels in Tokyo are already 10 times above normal levels.

#4 Reuters is reporting that some residents of Tokyo are already starting to flee the city.

#5 Radiation levels in one city north of Tokyo, Utsunomiya, were recently reported to be 33 times above normal levels.

#6 Radiation levels in the city of Saitama have been reported to be 40 times above normal levels.

#7 According to Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan, the “possibility of further radioactive leakage is heightening.”

#8 The Japanese government is admitting that radiation levels near the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex are very harmful to human health.

#9 According to the World Nuclear Association, exposure to over 100 millisieverts of radiation a year can lead to cancer.  At this point the level of radiation being measured right outside the number 4 reactor at the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex is 400 millisieverts per hour.

#10 A U.S. Navy crew that was assisting in relief efforts was exposed to a month’s worth of nuclear radiation in just a single hour.

#11 According to the U.S. Navy, low levels of radiation have been detected at their bases in Yokosuka and Atsugi.

#12 The USS Ronald Reagan recently detected significant levels of radiation 100 miles off the Japanese coast.

#13 The operator of the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex has pulled out 750 of the 800 workers that were working at the facility.

#14 The French embassy in Tokyo is advising French citizens to leave the city.

#15 The German embassy in Tokyo is advising all German citizens to leave the country entirely.

#16 German technology company SAP is evacuating their offices in Tokyo.

#17 Austria has announced that it is moving its embassy from Tokyo to Osaka due to fears about the radiation.

#18 Finland is urging all of their citizens to leave Tokyo.

#19 The Czech military is sending planes to Japan specifically to evacuate the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

#20 Air China is canceling many flights to Tokyo.

#21 The Chinese Embassy has announced that it will be evacuating all Chinese citizens from the Miyagi, Fukushima, Ibaraki and Iwate prefectures.

#22 Russia is making preparations to evacuate civilians and military units from the Kuril Islands.

#23 Physicist Frank von Hippel recently told the New York Times the following about this disaster: “It’s way past Three Mile Island already”.

#24 The president of France’s nuclear safety authority says that this crisis is now almost as bad as Chernobyl was….
     “It’s clear we are at Level 6, that’s to say we’re at a level in between what happened at Three Mile Island and Chernobyl.”

#25 There have been reports of extremely high radiation at another nuclear facility in Japan.  It has been reported that at the Onagawa nuclear plant radiation that is 700 times the normal level was detected at one point.

#26 One anonymous senior nuclear industry executive told The Times Of India that Japanese power industry managers are “basically in a full-scale panic” and that “they don’t know what to do”.

#27 It is also being reported that there were over 600,000 spent fuel rods stored at the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex.  Most of these rods were apparently stored near the top of the 6 reactor buildings.  There have already been major explosions at three of those buildings.  It is now feared that there is now nothing to prevent many of these spent fuel rods from releasing radiation into the atmosphere.  That is really, really bad news.

So is there a threat that nuclear radiation from Japan could reach the United States?
Well, actually everyone agrees that radiation could reach the United States.  The controversy is whether or not it will be enough to be harmful to human health.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is admitting that it is “quite possible” that nuclear fallout from this disaster could reach the United States.  In fact, Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman David McIntyre says that there could already be radiation from Japan over America….

     Right now it’s quite possible that there could be some radiation floating over the United States.

But most government officials in the U.S. are insisting that there is “no threat” to the health of American citizens from this crisis at this point.

So how would nuclear radiation from Japan get transported to the United States?

Well, if radiation released by a damaged nuclear reactor got up into the jet stream, the first major land mass that it would encounter would be North America.  In fact, the jet stream commonly takes air from over Japan directly over the west coast of the United States.  The following video demonstrates this fact beautifully….


Global Jet Stream Forecast (March 13-21st)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Gr8hr4W64E&feature=player_embedded

So is there any reason for those of us living in the United States to be concerned?

According to the Japanese government, the U.S. government and the mainstream media there is not.

But do you believe them?

The truth is that they seem much more concerned with keeping the public calm rather than telling the public the truth.
Radiation levels are increasing all over northern and central Japan.  People are starting to leave Tokyo and other major cities in the region.  Foreign governments are evacuating personnel.  Fires continue to erupt at the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex.  The authorities in Japan seem to have no idea how to solve this crisis.

If even one of those damaged nuclear reactors fully melts down it is going to be a complete and total nightmare.  If you live in an area that could potentially be affected by nuclear radiation from Japan you might want to start figuring out how you and your family are going to handle this crisis.
And  the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, 
Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren,  ye have done it unto me.

Matthew 25:40