Japan refugees in New Zealand: Family’s health suffering — Diarrhea, chest problems, swollen glands — “Many of her friends and family back in Fukushima have similar symptoms”

Published: December 18th, 2011 at 8:19 am ET


Family finds Dunedin safe haven from disaster, Otago Daily Times By John Lewis, Dec. 18, 2011:

The 34-year-old escaped Fukushima with sons […]

But her 40-year-old husband remains in Fukushima, working to earn money so his wife and sons can live temporarily in New Zealand. […]

[She] said this Christmas would be the first in more than 10 years that she will not spend with her husband; a thought which was very upsetting for her.

As for what she wants for Christmas, she said: “My first Christmas without him… I don’t know. All I want is for us to be together again.”

Health Problems

She and the boys have been suffering ongoing health problems since the catastrophe, including diarrhoea, chest complaints and swollen glands, and many of her friends and family back in Fukushima have similar symptoms.

Criticism Back Home

She has since come to Dunedin, a decision which has attracted much criticism from her family and friends.

“It was a strange time. On TV, people from other countries were saying we [Fukushima residents] should leave Fukushima. The [Japanese] Government said the radiation was OK, but we feel it was not OK.

“It was very frightening.

“[Family and friends] say you are stupid for leaving because there is nothing wrong here, the Government says it is safe.

“Others say, ‘You are leaving to save yourself, what about us’?”

While she feels some guilt for leaving, she does not regret her decision.

Published: December 18th, 2011 at 8:19 am ET


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47 comments to Japan refugees in New Zealand: Family’s health suffering — Diarrhea, chest problems, swollen glands — “Many of her friends and family back in Fukushima have similar symptoms”

  • or-well

    Thank you for including Mochizukis’ experience above.
    It helps show US what pro-active Japanese are facing right down to family level.

  • Ken31ONCA

    Wow, if we have cancer we can kill ourselves anytime, got to love how parents always know best. (Sarcasm) And older people say we have it easy compared to a generation ago,I beg to differ.

  • James2

    Look at this story -other citizens ridiculed this lady for leaving!

    That is the real problem here – this is going to play out very, very badly. You can just feel that the serious health problems and deaths are increasing at an increasing rate, which is going to lead to massive suffering.

    It appears to me that this lady did a good thing for her family – however I fear she waited too long.

  • Bones Bones

    As do I. The farther back you go the easier life was. What obsession do the Japanese have with suicide?!?! Their culture is one of slavery! They work extremely long hours and bust their ass for their boss and company usually without much pay. They are treated like robots and no wonder they have such horrible personal lives. I read somewhere that almost 70% of younger people have no girlfriend or boyfriend. That may not be the exact number, but it is very high there. These point to a culture of submissiveness and an unhealthy level of official trust mixed with a dash of no commonsense. (Obv doesn’t apply to the nuke aware people.) These kids are so into the system that they consider their schoolwork and tests to be like work and don’t talk to friends. I mean to an unhealthy level. I also think of how submissive, unassertive and childlike their women are or at least want them to behave that way. It’s like a society run by insecure males with insecure population. I have lost respect for the Japanese “culture.” The culture seems corporate made.

    • NoNukes NoNukes

      They sound like no one so much as Americans.

      “You’re paranoid.”

      “That’s over.”

      “Only a tiny amount can get here.”

      Do we really think that when we announce that we are leaving because of Fukushima, people will respond, “That is reasonable”? No, they will all act like we lost our minds. Otherwise, what does it imply about them?

    • americancommntr

      The Japanese have done very well providing for themselves, and have necessarily worked very hard to do it. 120 million people live in a nation with the same land area as California. The level of natural resources is low. They have taken care of themselves very well considering these things, and have a very organized and polite society. What other nation on earth could someone lose a wallet or wad of money, and nobody steal it?

      However, Japanese people are like everyone else, the Bible says we fall short of what the Creator requires. The Creator also said, “What does it profit a man, if he gains the whole world, but loses his soul?” So yes there are some thing not quite right, just like every other country.

      Regarding this couple and their children, and her and the kids leaving the country: I remember what a Chernobyl doctor and victim said at the beginning of the catastrophe: paraphrasing heavily here; “Run. Run for your life. Get away as fast and far as you can. Don’t believe the government or the industry.”

      That was right.

      It does not solve the problem of what happens if a whole country panics. I don’t know what is best, but since most people are staying, ‘kudos’ for those with the courage to get out completely, if they can’t get far enough away from Fukushima Daiichi and the heavily contaminated areas.

  • What all of this reminds me of is the scientists and medical doctors who ‘studied’ the effects of really dark stuff on the millions of people in the camps, under Hitler in Germany, as well as here in the US, but by FORCE.

    Really bad things were done to these people without their permission, knowledge or consent, including trying to make them all extinct.

    True science is not about hiding things and doing harmful things to people without their consent. True science is not about releasing things into the environment that causes suffering, disease and cancer for billions of people, and eventually will result in the extinction of all humankind.

    If we really wanted to be subjects in a global lab experiment that involves nuclear radiation that lasts for BILLIONS of years, then I would suggest, that every person on Earth gets to VOTE or sign a release form that indicates their agreement to be exposed to such deadly and dangerous radioactive materials, with a FULL CONSENT FORM, exposing all of the stuff below and the HEALTH CONSEQUENCES OF EACH ELEMENT, and there are hundreds of them.

    Long half life radioactive elements
    Part I http://www.care2.com/c2c/share/detail/3047473 Elements 1-9
    Part II http://www.care2.com/c2c/share/detail/3048444 Elements 10-13

    I was never told of these long lived radioactive elements. Were you informed? I was never told of the dangers of MOX fuel. I was never informed of the consequences of long term low level radiation from bomb ‘tests’, or regular ‘venting’ from nuclear power plants, via 81 inch tubes that go way up high in the air, so no one will know what is coming out of them. I was not told about DU weapons, or about dusty uranium mines tailing piles which stay radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years.

    Even today, who knows what is or has come out of Fukushima?


    The experts tell everyone, not to worry, it is ‘safe’ and ‘harmless’. Right… just like pixie dust, unicorns,…

  • or-well

    Japanese cultural attributes have been manipulated to benefit the Administrative and Corporate structures.

    Societal pressure to behave altruistically (in the broadest social/civil sense) is common in human society and serves a survival function.

    What is astonishing (to my Western mind) is the degree to which the societally-structuring administrative apparatus in Japan has co-opted and magnified existing cultural traits to create acceptance of what is not in everyones’ best interest.

    IOW, bullshit baffles brains. We are no less propagandised, but we do have historically a greater cultural focus on individuality.

    Environmental and political activism faces
    a real uphill battle there, even without Western collusion.

    • James2

      or-well, you look on these japanese traits as bad. I don’t know if I would necessarily say that.

      Japan has given the world many, many things in the past century under that culture. I think it is safe to say that they have completely dominated the art of manufacturing – automobiles, motorcycles, consumer electronics, cameras, memory chips – many many wonderful things have come out of Japan, and maybe could not have been accomplished without the culture.

      And there are many ways of living a life. Although the Japanese people have a certain way of life, they hadn’t gone hungry or without medical care. There are probably billions of people in the world who have a poorer life than the poorest Japanese.

      They just ran headlong into this stupid disaster that they cannot make go away. No matter how obedient; no matter how hard they work – it still will not go away.

      Actually the culture could deal with the disaster more effectively than probably any other if they just had the truth and some direction, rather than lies and misdirection.

      • or-well

        Perhaps I was unclear.

        I do not dispute any of their positive accomplishments.

        Nor do I consider their underlying cultural traits less worthy than those of others cultures. Indeed, I personally consider some MORE worthy. But that’s not my point.

        I AM saying various cultural traits have been manipulated, to the advantage of the ruling elites and to the dis-advantage of the Japanese people as a whole.

        Their history is what it is. The re-inforcement (by opportunistic elites)of a cultural impetus towards consensual behaviour has lowered the immunity of the Japanese body-politic to behaviour on the part of the elites that would be better opposed.

        The mainstream response to Fukushima in Japan a case in point.

        I completely agree with your last paragraph. They are less able to deal with this disaster because of the neo-feudal mindset of their ruling elites.

        I would be pleased to continue this discussion if you wish to leave replys but I must get ready to leave the house.

        • nohobear nohobear

          Agreed, elites have manipulated cultural traits for their own benefit and profit. Here in the US, it’s from the opposite end of Japanese respect and service to the larger society. The cultural traits of individualism, independence, have been magnified, distorted to produce a mindset that all government regulation is bad, corporations are individuals with rights, and it’s best to leave corporations alone, for if they are unfettered with regulations, they will (magically) do the right thing and all will prosper from the wealth that will trickle down.

          Hasn’t quite worked out that way.

        • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

          or-well, I think your analysis of the cultural background and the role of manipulation is excellent.

          There is corruption in every country, but at least in the major Western economies you can usually find it discussed somewhere, whereas in Japan, it is rare to find corruption discussed anywhere even in non-conventional media such as internet blogs, and even when it is, it is covered only very briefly. Prosecutions are extremely rare. Out of a mixture of ignorance and instinctive reticence bordering on self censorship, even educated Japanese seem very reluctant to consider any aspect of corruption in Japan. This applies to old and young alike.

          You seem to understand nihonjinron well. Have you lived or studied there?

          • or-well

            No Atoms For Happiness, I haven’t.
            Guess I won’t now.

            I used to think “East” would truly “meet West” in North America, in the sense we had an opportunity to shed the worst and learn the best and achieve an improved hybrid approach to civil society.

            But then, I used to be a romantic idealist.

            I think we ARE developing an Elite with ah, a degree of integration and attitude of arrogance more like Japans’.

            Take the statement about happy, smiling people being safe from radiation (totally paraphrasing because I suspect you know the one I mean): the bare-faced gall it took to say that reflects an attitude of untouchable privilege and contempt for “ordinary” people !

            That speaker was not the only one to do so. It has been ongoing.

            I must say, you encapsulated in a paragraph what it took me two posts to say !

            • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

              or-well @11:25PM, I enjoyed your comments in this thread.

              But then, I used to be a romantic idealist.

              Weren’t we all in our youth.

          • Terranigma1 Terranigma1

            Japan has less income disparity than the U.S. CEOs in Japan do not make 300 times their workers, as in the U.S., which is outrageous.

            My view is that the U.S. has manipulated just about every country on the planet and continues to do so.

            • or-well

              I heard on “Alternative Radio” (some years ago) that income ratios in Japan were determined for awhile after WW11 by someone with the USA occupation forces.

              Also that those ratios may be indicative of health levels in a country !

    • aigeezer aigeezer

      “…we do have historically a greater cultural focus on individuality.”

      Historically, absolutely, currently not so much.

      I’m almost 70 and I’m astonished at the cultural shift in the US away from individuality over my lifetime. It is very dramatic from my perspective, but to anyone born into it everything must seem normal. Of course this phenomenon (new normal) must happen constantly, but one only gets a personal window into it. It’s very exploitable by entities (governments or corporations) that have a lifetime longer than that of individuals.

      Hehe, I’m old enough to remember when Japan was “the bad guy” and Iran was “the good guy” under the sham Shah. I’ve watched the propaganda machine switch gears pretty often, but I’ve never seen it turned off.

      The propaganda machine will be spinning the Japan story – it’s just not yet clear how the story will be told. Will it be “the gallant Fukushima 50 struggling to save mankind (April 2011)” or
      “those backward Asians who need American know-how to fix their nuclear problems (December 2011)” or something else?

      • or-well


        ok quickly,

        still individuals BUT more isolated from one another, more dependent on the “nanny state”, more turned against one another.

        Divide and conquer.

        The marlboro man as long as he doesn’t dissent. The rugged individualist goes shopping and votes for whatever tentacle of the squid gets the best grip on his pre-digested opinions (no facts please) served up by the persuasion machine.

        I’m old enough to remember the Belgian Congo and Kwame Nkruma (sp?). Just popped into my head….

        Have a fine day All.

    • GreenParis

      There are many interesting books about the Japanese character/personality/culture, mainly written by foreigners.
      A Japanese medical doctor who has lived for many years in the USA (where he became a psychoanalyst), before returning to Japan and experiencing a huge culture shock (he had become free in America), has written interesting books and articles. His name is Masao Miyamoto :
      I recommend his only book translated into English, Straitjacket Society: An Insider’s Irreverent View of Bureaucratic Japan :
      In Japan, the individual is destroyed in early childhood, and then people become necrophiles, i.e. deprived of life inside. They function like machines.

      • aigeezer aigeezer

        “They function like machines.”

        That was certainly a common meme in the years after WWII, at least among the victors. “They can only copy, they can’t innovate” was a very common platitude of the era. That theme dried up as the Japanese economy became the second largest in the world (now third and falling, of course). By the mid 1980s many Western corporate advice books were telling their audiences how to be more like the Japanese. Their economy peaked shortly after and has been in slow decline ever since.

        They are what they are.

        In any case, the Fukushima cores (wherever they are) are still emitting their poisons. Tick, tick, tick.

      • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

        Just look at how the senior figures in the bureaucracy reacted to Miyamoto’s bestselling book. They destroyed his career, illegally threatened to remove his pension entitlement, “arranged” for him to be subjected to personal threats, and then he was killed through cancer soon afterwards. They couldn’t stand the truth being aired so publically.

        There is a lot more to this tragic case that somebody like Jake Adelstein would do very well to investigate.

        Whistleblowers in Japan should avoid contacting the media and be careful to remain anonymous. NHK, for example, has a massive conflict of interest by its being one of the largest stakeholders in TEPCO.

        • or-well

          Atoms,it wouldnt be much different here if there wasn’t a “market” for “selling” a certain amount of dissent into. The degree of dissent permitted here, and the type of dissent (its’ targets) is shrinking, or at least dissent and truthtelling is being increasingly “discouraged” by various means (outside of the internet).

          Truly challenging dissent has always been suppressed in Canada/USA. That it hasn’t is a promoted cultural myth.

          We certainly have not heard much here from MSM about the unsavoury aspects of Japanese society, apart from what is titillating or sensational on occassion.

          • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

            People are more willing to accept they have freedom of speech if they do not know or see the tools of suppression – misinformation, disinformation, a.p’s, outright censorship, etc, etc [ref. your near namesake’s most famous work].

        • CB CB

          Atoms For Happiness you should get a better fire wall, I have your IP address street level. You should STFU and give no more comments. Whistle blowers are welcome here.

          • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

            CB, you’re talking BS. A firewall has nothing whatsoever to do with knowing my IP address. You probably meant a proxy, but got confused in your own ignorance. Saying you have my IP address is BS. Unless you run this server, you have no way of knowing my IP address. I said nothing to discourage whistleblowers from posting on enenews. Turn your hostility down. Now. Please.

        • James2

          Ahh atoms good to know about the whistleblower problem. Where do you think they should go to report abuses?

          • Atoms For Happiness Atoms For Happiness

            I don’t know, James2. Many Japanese people feel they have a communications barrier with the outside world. The Japan Times has reported surveys that show their ability to speak foreign languages, especially English, is generally relatively low compared to people in other nations. They are also notoriously shy in speaking with foreigners and often fail to understand replies even when they are spoken more clearly and slowly than normal.

            • or-well

              The problem of where to turn to release info & the consequences if one does make Japanese whistleblowers very brave, IMO.

              The language barrier adds more difficulty to giving whisblo (Newspeak!)to non-Japanese.

              It also makes it harder for foreign media to penetrate Japan and find whisblo persons.

              Makes the internet so important.

        • GreenParis

          An investigative book to avenge Masao Miyaomoto’death is a very good idea.
          Also, a book publisher should translate his other book and articles, instead of translating one more manga.

  • Stephengn

    It’s amazing how little people understand what radiation does. It’s a form of energy. Outside of the long term, generational genetic damage that they are doing to themselves and their gene pool, the people in Japan are essentially being slow cooked. If they breathe enough particles in, it will slowly cook them from the inside

  • 3C

    Does anyone know how many japanese have left mainland Japan
    or sent their children out of the country and harms way?

    • NoNukes NoNukes

      Great question, 3C.

      Here is a video of some surfers who left immediately, sure they are not on any official list:


    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      That would be rather difficult to ascertain as many families send a spouse with their children away while one spouse stays to work and support their family. Thus I think it would be almost impossible to get an accurate number. I’m sure some one is trying to acquire a fuzzy number.

  • beamofthewave

    The Japanese should call in the Russians not the USA for assistance in fixing this problem. The Russians know how to handle it.

    • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

      Chernobyl is still a problem and will be for another 2 million years. It seems likely that experts were consulted and there is no answer because of the location of the Fukushima NPP. I would worry also about all the reactors which are all along the coast line.

  • stock stock@hawaii.rr.com


    Interesting discussion going on over here, about fuel rods lying about, see my other post too

    • James2

      physics forums is 100% coopted with shills- even the moderators are shills.

      No physics going on over there – just enough pseudo science babble to throw someone off the mark. They got sucked into the radioactive water diversion for months.

      BTW – you can tell instantly when they start talking about the #3 sfp exploding – which you’ve all heard from me that is a physical impossibility.