Award-winning Filmmaker on Fukushima: “People have low white blood cell counts… children and adults experiencing more nosebleeds and rashes” -Japan Times

Published: September 12th, 2013 at 3:44 pm ET


Title: Filmmaker revisits the children of Fukushima’s ‘Grey Zone’
Source: Japan Times
Author: Louise George Kittaka
Date: Sept. 9, 2013

For independent filmmaker Ian Thomas Ash, making documentaries is an organic process. “I’m not a journalist, and I don’t try to make judgments,” he says. “My reaction is to film what is going on around me and see where it leads.”

In Ash’s case, it has led to recognition and awards at film festivals around the world for “A2-B-C,” the second of a pair of documentaries about children living in towns a stone’s throw from the site of the nuclear reactor meltdowns in Fukushima Prefecture.

Ash, an American who has called Japan home for the past 10 years, was in Tokyo when the massive earthquake struck on March 11, 2011. […]

When he began hearing about an apparent increase in throat nodules and cysts among children in Fukushima, he knew this was a story that had to be told. There is an added urgency this time, since “A2-B-C” depicts the grassroots efforts of mothers in Fukushima to give a voice to their children and their worries for their future. […]

The film’s title comes from the medical classifications for the size and number of throat nodules and cysts, but the film deals with more than just worries about the risk of thyroid cancer among families in the region. “The film covers other health and environmental issues, such as our inability to decontaminate the area. People have low white blood cell counts, and both children and adults are experiencing more nosebleeds and rashes. Not to mention the constant stress they live with.” […]

Watch the A2-B-C trailer here

Published: September 12th, 2013 at 3:44 pm ET


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65 comments to Award-winning Filmmaker on Fukushima: “People have low white blood cell counts… children and adults experiencing more nosebleeds and rashes” -Japan Times

  • davidh7426 davidh7426

    The Nuclear Power Industries legacy for us & every future generation – – Coming to every country near you… NOW!!!

    Just what the hell have we done :'(

  • Excellent clip…!

    We are just now approaching the 2 1/2 year mark since 311. That's still very early for much of what we know is to come. This may be the 'tip of the iceberg'.

    'Tip of the iceberg' meaning: for a problem or difficulty that is only a small manifestation of a larger problem.


    The waters off British Columbia, Canada, are littered with dead starfish, and researchers have no idea what’s causing it.

    Marine biologist Jonathan Martin wrote to a researcher at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC:

    “[The starfish] seem to waste away, ‘deflate’ a little, and then just … disintegrate. The arms just detach, and the central disc falls apart."

    Read more:

    The article also mentions a starfish die-off on the East Coast. That part of the world has also been under attack by one recent major oil spill and the chemicals used to "clean up" the oil.


    • Anthony Anthony

      I guess we should just think positive….when the BIG WAVE of radiation we are being warned about for 2015 come through, there wont be any sea-life for it to kill by then.

      You cant poison an aquarium and expects the life therein to survive. Maybe a miracle can tip us back the other way of the tipping point… otherwise I think Mother Nature is a clear and honest communicator.

  • UncleCrusty

    Gut wrenching. Really would like seeing this. 3 minutes had me ready to punch the monitor – and the smarmy weasel official.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Fukushima is the source, and the radiation travels thousands of miles.

  • razzz razzz

    No worse than what the US does to its people or Russia or France or England or China or…

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    The ocean fish and the rest of the Earth's biological wildlife will soon have the same/like symptoms and it's only a matter of time now and we must all be patient for what still comith this way…

  • Sol Man

    Scientists are assumed to be so smart, so why are they always so baffled?

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Not in my book. If there's a smart one today, let her/him step up with a solution.

    • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

      The solution is the easiest part…it's the carelessness that's hard to change.

      Shut down every industry. Everyone becomes an employee of the Earth. Everyone is an environmental steward. There is no money. There are no products. Just music, art, love.

      Re-forest the planet.

      How many generations just to pick up all the trash that the past three generations have created? How many generations to decomission all the nuclear plants? How many for all the chemical plants? The fertilizer plants? Scrap all the cars? Clean up all the oil and toxins? Remove all the tar? The plastic? Styrofoam? What about all the nails? Screws? Landmines and other weapons? What about even just the paint and carpets in all the houses? We can't just put them in landfills, most are synthetic. Anyone that thinks that even just the carpeting is not a big problem, doesn't actually know how Life (with a capital L) works.

      Drop everything, shut down nuke, re-forest the planet by seed.

      • We Not They Finally

        There is no solution to this and you seem to be taking about another, theoretical planet on which this will happen. It won't happen here. Though it is good to organize in SMALL communities and do the best we can. It's doubtful that survival will be "big," but small should be encouraged.

        You think that CARPETING is the problem??

        • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

          Come on WNTF, you've been here long enough…you should know better by now…

          I never said what was going to happen or not…at least in that post…but what I wrote is un-deniably PART of the solution ("part" only because there is more to write/say but little time and space to do it here), and even includes examples of easily identifiable things that are PART of the problem, like synthetic carpeting. If you want to know what lies much more at the core of the problem, it is mostly psychological concepts like carelessness, selfishness, greed, closed-mindedness, short-sightedness…many things that are obviously problems that lead to the physical manifestations (symptomology) we see such as Nuke plants, combustion engines, corporations, starvation…

          When you say "it won't happen here", what do you mean? You mean Earth? Why not? Are you not willing to make the changes necessary? Are you not willing to live without a cellphone? Are you not willing to live without a car? Are you not willing to live without carpeting or synthetic paints? Come on. If that is the case, then you need to look inward if you are looking for the problems and the solutions. Everyone on this site, if you want to make a difference, change yourself. We are all guilty, and many of these things can be corrected simply by NOT buying or utilizing products/services that we don't actually need. Start small, and work your way up.

          • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

            You mention that it's good to organize in small communities, and you are right, but work on yourself first. You are the only person that you have total control and influence over. Everyone should remember that. Give up all your bad habits, they're just in your mind anyway…Never litter ever again. Why can't that be done? Hold yourself accountable. Never buy something that comes in plastic packaging again unless it's going to save your life, and even then, think twice about it. Example: people in Japan buy those disposable "masks" and where them to work/school/etc. First of all, none of those masks will protect you from anything airborn. A mask doesn't work unless it is form-fit to your face and completely sealed on. Anyway, each of those masks comes in celaphane packaging…and so we have people that are "environmentally conscious" purchasing items that are obviously terrible for the environment…Lesson: Think twice, always.

            WNTF: If you want to see groups and communities form that are truly on the right path, you will need individuals first. Get yourself straight, and you and others will get together. Then, your community will be strong and have influence and can make larger environmental differences. Even whole states and regions will develop where laws are passed that prohibit all of these obviously horrible products (including the carpeting you love so much)…

            • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

              very wise.. 🙂

            • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

              Continued WNTF:

              We all must understand the BIG issues (like Nuke) so we are on the same page as to WHY things need to change. Then, people will realize that it's the millions of minor, "moral-exceptions" we make throughout our lives that leads to a population that would allow something like NPPs to be created. A truly moral and intelligent society would never allow such and thing, and in fact would dedicate their lives toward the prevention of anything nuclear. The fact that we are in our current situation proves at least two things: One: that there is a minor subset of the human population that is greedy and horrible enough to promote, build, and operate NPPs, and TWO: that the entire rest of the human population is either too complacent, too lazy, too foolish, too self-absorbed, or too cowardly to do anything about it…even to change their own behaviors in any simple way.

              You asked if I thought carpeting was the problem…the answer is that, yes, synthetic carpeting is one of millions of parts of the problem. You may not be able to take down Nuke in one day (which is what we all want), but you certainly can make a personal vow not to use a lawnmower ever again. You can make a vow not to purchase things in plastic packaging. You can make a vow to compost your organic materials. You can make a vow to save as much water as possible. You can make a vow to grow as much of your own food as possible. All these can be set in motion over night.

              • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

                You can then teach your friends and neighbors what you are doing by showing them the real-life example of how you made the changes to better ways. You influence will spread. When friends and family come to your house, they will see that when you prepare a meal all of the trimmings are going into a different conainer….haha! They will say, what are you doing? And you will say, "mom, I am composting, it is good for all of us and it is just one more way that we can be thankful and spread love". Or your neighbor may say, "hey why is your 'lawn' grown in the way it is?" and you could say, "because we are trying to be efficient and wary of our environmental impact…instead of lawn, we will slowly be scattering seeds of edibles and flowers to promote food and health, diverse ecosystems." Or something like that.

                A property in N.J. that I've been stewarding is the proof; changed from suburban lawn to infant food-forest in one year, all by seed. No tilling, digging, transplanting, or irrigation. And the only purchase I made was of certain seeds that I had an interest in, but weren't necessary. I didn't burn a drop of gasoline. If you haven't started yet, get started. If you need to know what your end goal is (or close to it), look up MovieDoo on Youtube. Also find Martin Crawford. Search Food Forest. Bill Mollison and Geoff Lawton. Eventually I will get my own vids up on MoonlightEmpire on Youtube.

                Encouragement to you all.

      • Anthony Anthony

        Hmmm I assume you are postulating and making suggestions. Funny thing is I have read elsewhere what you are suggesting is how it is going to be. I for one cant wait. It will be nice to experience a new and better way of living.

        • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

          You are correct, but only if we make it that far…only if nuke doesn't destroy us, which it may already have…

          To imagine how the world should be, you needn't look far back…even if you think of the 1800's, they lived with fresher air, water, food, and resources than any of us can easily imagine. There were no combustion engines running…there were no plastics or any of the effluents from their production…99% less synthetic chemicals…no artificial hormones or anti-bacterials that create super-bugs…

          I can go on and on, but can't write it all here. All of you can imagine if you think about it.

          You CAN HAVE that better way of living, too, and you can have it right now. The only way we will succeed is if EVERYONE like you chooses to go in that direction. No more man-made products. Why buy a wooden spoon, just whittle one yourself! Oh, you don't have any fallen branches to use…? Well, I guess you shouldn't have been so quick to chop those trees down….I guess you shouldn't have been mowing your lawn for the last 25 years, and instead should have nurtured that land by allowing it to take the natural forms it wanted. Then, and only then, would it provide for you what you need.

          This is not aimed at you, but rather, just about everyone.

          My father has mowed the family "yard" for the past 30 years. It's almost 2 acres. If he only had NOT done that, we would have a forest worth of resources. Instead, we have nothing.

      • NoPrevarication NoPrevarication


        Most people have not thought of these things yet. Americans are still using disposable diapers. Guess where they end up? But dispose of all the cars? What would you do with the disabled who cannot walk?

        • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

          All of the same things that people did for at least 3 thousand years before cars were invented, obviously…

          And you are right about the diapers. The list goes on and on and on. There is no need for disposable diapers, there never was…and yet think about how many people will fight against banning those diapers, simply so they don't have to wash their own child's linens for a couple years…

          My own mother mentioned tampons and pads…these too were never needed and should not be used, but it will be a very hard sell on women to get them to use linens again.

          All in all, certain things, like tampons and diapers can possibly wait (or at least change them to a disposable organic material like hemp, and tie them on/together instead of taping), but they still must be done away with as soon as possible.

          Of course, shut down of everything nuclear must come first, along with many other major things, but there are millions of minor things that can be changed immediately. No one has to buy bottled water (unless their life depends on it). No one has to have a lawn mower (think of all the fossil fuel burned just to cut grass). All power tools could be made solar rechargable. All newspapers could be printed with Pokeberry juice instead of ink (what a travesty to put ink on paper). On and on and on. There are millions, or billions of products that we don't need that can be done away with immediately. This will set us on the right course.

          • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

            except that the military and industrial complex uses most of the water, energy and resources. Like any disease, the root problem must be removed. It is ideological as well as material. Since the problem is endemic to the system, some form of anarchy is the solution, even though it sounds radical. But even anarchy is likely to be an orchestrated ruse. "They'll be callin' you a radical"- Kevin Blanch


            • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

              I completely agree, this must be removed, and you may be right about the chaos that may ensue, but I am much more in favor of non-violent work. The military and industrial complexes may have "gone rogue" so to speak, but that doesn't mean that the people can't lasso them back in and make them do what's right. When it comes down to it, all politicians are acting the way that they are (the bad ones) only because they are getting away with it. Hold these people accountable. And if normal diplomacy doesn't work, boycott the shit out of them. Boycott the shit out of every large corporation. Stop all use of their products. Like in Mad Max, "who runs Barter-Town?". He shut the power off to show he was in control. All the civilians have to do is shut the funding down to the bad guys by ceasing to buy their products and services. Boycott them, as many as you can until they start playing for the good guys or they shrivel up and shut themselves down. The civilians rule, they just have to exercise their massive power of CHOICE. Start with the huge companies, but don't forget about even the mom and pops. Tell the owner of the pizzaria that you'll never buy another pie if he doesn't stop selling coca-cola products, and let him know that you have lots of friends. If any small owner like that goes under for those reasons, you can bet your ass lots of people are going to know about it. Then the boycotting will spread. Everyone will do it.

          • teamplayer

            I appreciate your take, Moonlight.
            There are so many things we can do, that can make a real difference.
            Downsizing and minimizing are two of the best, IMO.

            • MoonlightEmpire MoonlightEmpire

              Agreed. Get our personal lives back in order, down to the essentials, and build from there. If people want something more, tell them to make it/grow it themselves. With a lot of people active in this mindset (or ideally our whole country/culture), we CAN get NPPs shut down and in the decomissioning process.

              These ideas are related, because an actively, environmentally-intelligent society can only exist if it is made up of a majority of environmentally-intelligent (and responsible) people. Such a society would shut down every NPP. Our current society will just ignore it until it's too late.

              We must change our society by changing our own behaviors. The lessons will come from us by our own examples, and the cultural shift will occur. This is not the "end-all, be-all", but it's important.

  • Mack Mack

    This is very sad.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    Yes, very sad and exactly the true result achieved from any manmade Nuclear Radiation Contamination disaster/events/exposures and this is what technology does to all biological life negatively affected.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    oops..this is what "this Nuclear Technology" does to all biological life negatively affected.

  • Please to review the movie trailer…looking forward to the complete story…Today i was wondering where in the world are the real jounalist…it's difficult to understand the level of complicity in this crime.
    Of oourse no less than the endless disbursement of U238 by the USA…or the horrors they inflicted at Falujah.
    The quiet suffering thru out the world where the USA has disbursed more chemical weapons than all the other nations on earth combined even adding in Russia!
    No one beats the USA we are the number one chemical contaminated on earth. Gold Medal Winners.

  • Cindy

    North Korea is starting up their aged Plutonium Reactor … they think this is an accident waiting to happen….

  • Sustain26 Sustain26

    Some more clean up tips:
    "..Radiation resistance is an important parameter of filtering materials used in processing nuclear materials. Organic ion-exchange resins are limited in these applications because they are weakly resistant to ionizing radiation. Thermoxide sorbents, however, possess high radiation resistance and, therefore, can be used to decontaminate highly radioactive solutions.."
    Modern filtering materials are investigated in respect to their use for treating water from ponds of long-term storage at nuclear stations. The design of the small-sized cartridge filter with filtering element of an organic material and selective inorganic sorbent "THERMOXIDE-3А" is presented.
    160 scientific papers mostly describing decontamination of radioactivity using thermoxides
    9 references to thermoxide

  • Kassandra

    I've had the great privilege to view A2.

    Ian is an amazing person and the film is INCREDIBLE.

    I cried and cried. There is beauty, love for children and intense sadness in this film.

  • Mack Mack

    Here are the screening dates for A2-B-C:

    LONDON, ENGLAND (UK PREMIER) at Raindance Film Festival
    •Tuesday, October 1 at 6.15pm
    •Wednesday, October 2 at 12.30pm

    YAMAGATA, JAPAN at the Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival
    •Saturday, October 12 at 10:00a.m. at the Yamagata Museum of Art

    TAIPEI, TAIWAN at the Taiwan International Ethnographic Film Festival
    • Saturday, October 5 at 19:00

    OHIO, USA at the Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
    •Saturday, October 5 at 2:30 PM at the Chagrin Falls Public Library

    •Sunday, September 29 at 17:30 LantarenVenster / Rotterdam

    GUAM, USA at the Guam International Film Festival
    •Saturday, September 28 at 7:20 PM at Stadium B

    MASSACHUSETTS, USA at the Newburyport Film Festival
    •Sunday, September 22 at 11:30 am at the Firehouse Center for the Arts

    FLORIDA, USA at the Global Peace Film Festival
    •Thursday, September 19 at 6:00 PM at Rollins College, SunTrust Auditorium

    •Saturday, September 21 at 1:00 PM at Winter Park Library

    TOKYO, JAPAN (JAPAN PREMIER) at the PIA Film Festival
    •Saturday, September 14th at 17:00 at Cinequint, Shibuya

    Screening details here:

  • unincredulous unincredulous

    Just have the government lower the amount of white blood cells a body needs. There, now everyone is healthy again. Move along, people. Nothing to see here. Go shopping.

    • So easy to solve problems when you have unlimited power to change standards for the worse in a never ending fashion.

      Don't like the higher radiation/chemicals/poison levels?

      Sorry, the standards were just changed, and it is now legal.

  • ProfitOfDoom ProfitOfDoom

    It seems likely the beginning of the end to life on this planet occurred when the first atoms were split by humans … the products of this activity have accumulated over the globe and carbon based life can not exist in their presence … we have witnessed only a few nuclear waste releases on the planet so far … eventually all of it will make its way into the ecosphere … I suggest the essay by Jamey Hecht,Ph.D. "Collapse Awareness and the Tragic Consciousness" … $$POD$$

  • pinksailmatt pinksailmatt

    This morning, BBC runs this article trying to ease peoples minds over radiation & cancer. Wow!

  • ftlt

    Sadly and soon, FUFU and it horrors will become the norm… The catastrophic collapse of the nuclear infrastructure is the inexorable outcome – one brought on by both greed and war caused by greed..

    I feel there can be no other result given our nature…

    FUFU is "another" lens into our not too distant future…

    • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

      mental retardation is a big problem, now at 1 in 50 people. There is some evidence that IQ has been decreasing for several hundred years. In just a few generations, the retarded will strive to care for the other retarded and things will spin out of control. The 1/3+ cases of thyroid disorder in Fukushima mirror the amount of deformity seen in moths and butterflies. This will get worse in coming generations.

      I dont see any redemption to this, no angelic or UFO beings coming with love, technology or even pain medication.

      send petitions to the ruling 0.001% if you have hope. At best its damage control as its too late for so many already. The almost inevitable release of more radiation from nuclear plants around the world will deliver blow after blow of devastation.

      Some believe in spiritual deliverance via technique or faith in a master/saint. A good time to try that. But what we really need on this earth plane reality is elimination of the powerful forces that brought us here. Morphine and all manner of natural medicines should be free from the control of big pharma and the elites who leverage your suffering for profit.

      • bo bo

        The ruling 0.001% haha so true.. I always thought 1% slogan is too optimistic.

        I read a research paper done on SAT scores which shone the light on the fact that effect of radiation to mental retardation isn't always so obvert, there is a gray zone of mild retardation – Nevada and surrounding states ranked lowest in SAT scores all through the atomic testing, and as soon as the generation born AFTER testing ended reached senior year, it was able to pick itself up again. The researcher concluded that radiation had to be the factor because of the fact that these states continued to score lower than some other states with lower income average or higher rates of broken families, and the fact that the scores immediately recovered after testing stopped.

        • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

          actually ruling 0.0001%
          If their armies went to farming, and if the world utilized barter instead of money, they would not be in control anymore. But I have asked people what they think of barter and crowd source and they are AFRAID of it! Why? Afraid they wont make money on money, an ideologically flawed premise.

          According to Rothkopf, the superclass constitutes approximately 0.0001 percent of the world’s population, comprised of 6,000 to 7,000 people

          • bo bo

            Cool, if there's less of them then perhaps we really can overthrow them

            • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

              only 6000 of them but they control enough military power to destroy the world many times over. How to overthrow? Complete boycott by every person on earth. Barter, not money, forget the illogical profit upon profit ideology. Embrace open source technology. We could join the other 99.9% of animal species which are free from shackles of usury economics

  • Mack Mack

    New Op-Ed by Dr. Caldicott discusses medical implications of Fukushima:

    TRITIUM –>
    "Tritium combines within the DNA molecule inducing mutations. In numerous animal experiments tritium causes birth defects, cancers of various organs including brain and ovaries, and it induces testicular atrophy and mental retardation at surprisingly low doses. Tritium is organically taken up in food and is concentrated in fish, vegetables, and other food groups, and it remains radioactive for over 120 years. Ingestion of contaminated food causes 10 percent to combine in the human body where it can remain for many years continuously irradiating cells."

    CESIUM —>
    "…A potassium mimicker, which concentrates in the heart, endocrine organs and muscles where it can induce cardiac irregularities, heart attacks, diabetes, hypothyroidism or thyroid cancer and a very malignant muscle cancer called rhabdomyosarcoma. Cesium remains radioactive for 300 years and concentrates in the food chain."

    STRONTIUM 90 —>
    "Another very dangerous element is strontium 90, which also is poisonous for 300 years. Analogous to calcium, it concentrates in grass and milk, then relocates into bones, teeth and breast milk where it can cause bone cancer, leukemia or breast cancer."

    Much more here:

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    Mack..Nice! 🙂