Leading Japan newspaper comes out against nuclear power: “The illusion of nuclear power safety has been torn out by the root”

Published: March 8th, 2012 at 4:49 am ET


Title: Editorial: Time to say goodbye to nuclear power
Source: Mainichi Daily News
Date: March 8, 2012

Editorial: Time to say goodbye to nuclear power 

The illusion of nuclear power safety has been torn out by the root. The Fukushima nuclear disaster that followed the great waves of March 11 last year made sure of that.

What, we wondered at the time, would happen if the reactor vessels exploded? How far would the radioactive contamination spread? Even thinking of it now, nearly a year on, makes one feel crushed.

Economic concerns, however, have begun to wear down the fear of nuclear disaster. And so, as we consider our nuclear power and energy policy’s future, we must remember what the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant meltdowns have done to Japan, the pain of the people who have lost their hometowns, and the radioactive contamination that will blight the landscape for decades to come.

Unfortunately, that it makes us so uneasy to think about this speaks volumes about the state of politics in Japan. […]

Read the Editorial here

Published: March 8th, 2012 at 4:49 am ET


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28 comments to Leading Japan newspaper comes out against nuclear power: “The illusion of nuclear power safety has been torn out by the root”

  • retali8 retali8

    great news, but makes you wonder for a second,, if you were living in tokyo , have you already ingested or inhaled your lethal dose? just crazy how many japanese i talk to who say everything is fine and "im ok because i dont live in fukushima" … really crazy for me,,, its like hang on a minute,, if only you knew the truth,,
    and how he can just carry on his life with death on the doorstep, the invisible killer lurks..

    • kintaman kintaman

      As some of you may know, I evacuated my family from Tokyo and then Japan asap after 3.11. But now a year later we have a strong yearning to go back to Tokyo and resume the life we loved and left there. I think the downplaying by the media and our heart attachment to Japan has us both feeling this way.

      I know that in reality there can be no real safe life there now due to the many contamination possibilities (air, water, food) but it is so very difficult to think that there is no going back.

      I am on constant contact with friends, family and colleagues in Tokyo and they all tell me that life is fine there. Some of my friends are very conscious of the food they eat while others have told me that it is "too much trouble and paranoid" to be worrying about what food and drink you consume. It seems this is the new accepted reality.

      I hear this and I feel like I am thrust into the Twilight Zone. It is beyond my ability to accept as reality but I know it is. I know I am grown man but I find I am near the end of my tether with this all. It is all too much to deal with. What compounds this is that there is no one I can express this with who fully understands and appreciates the seriousness of what has happened.

      The local folks where I live now have no clue or simply do not care. The Japanese community here do not want to hear about it. Is there anyone else here who has left Japan that is experiencing the same feelings I am? I hope I am not the only one…

      • James2

        From what I understand, the diseases that will be seen in Tokyo have not had time to develop yet.

        Personally if I were you I would wait another 12 months at least. Then you will be able to gauge the health situation more accurately.

        • kintaman kintaman

          Thank you for your reply James2. I agree completely that we have yet to see the signs of the long term illnesses that will appear as a result of Fukushima. The "share the pain" propaganda by the Japanese government will serve only to make the number of illnesses that much greater.

          As I said, my family and I yearn to go back to Japan very much but we know in reality that it cannot be. I hope that one day I can go to Japan again but I do not think it will be for several decades at least. The Japan I have known and loved will be dead and gone by then I believe. The fuse for the yet to come disaster was lit on 3.11. It is a long fuse but the payload is very big. This is one of the thoughts that brings me to tears and rage at the perpetrators of this mass crime.

          • James2

            The yearning to be close to friends and family and that which is familiar is very strong, so there is no shame in feeling it – especially when those left behind are telling you that you were wrong and things are fine.

            Perhaps things turn out completely fine in Tokyo – but there is no doubt the danger has been very high – then you can be very happy for Tokyo and very happy that you took precautions on the real possibility of danger. It's akin to buying a fire-extinguisher and being happy you never had to use it – I know bad analogy, because a fire extinguisher is a small sacrifice and you've made a big one – but the concept is the same.


        @kintaman: great post! I'm sorry that you're feeling so isolated from home and from those you'd hope would be more rational about this threat. Just know that much of what you're feeling is being felt – in one form or another – by most others, as well.

        It should now be obvious to all, as things 'progress' down the path of ruin, those that were warned will look back and greatly appreciate such intent and concern. Not unlike Diogenes of Pompey, they'll remember the light of our lanterns. Do not allow the weight of this knowledge to break your resolve to help others! Stay focused on what you're doing to help save lives. It's never been about you or me, but about those about us…

        • kintaman kintaman

          Thanks aftershock. I am doing all I can to keep things together but the future is uncertain. But then again, isn't it for us all? Taking it day by day here but have been having great bouts of anger and deep depression. Doing my best to get out of this funk so I can keep my family happy which is most important. I know that what we have experienced was NOTHING compared to those closer to Fukushima and worse yet the actual tsunami so I am so very grateful for that.

          That said the main reason for my depression is what is happening to Japan and the people there. It is, as we have been saying all along, a crime against humanity. It is so sad that such a tiny and industrious nation with very good and upstanding people is having to endure a third nuclear disaster (Hiroshima and Nagasaki being the first two) but on a much grander scale. This is one that the country may never recover from and we will see the end of a nation with a long and very deep culture just fall apart thanks to the greed, corruption and incompetence of its ruling class. This inspires great anger yet at the same time equally great depression.

          Why Japan could not have used their scientific and technological advances to build their energy resources based on geothermals is beyond me. Why did they succumb to US pressure/temptation after the war and willingly build so many nuclear reactors? How anyone could not see this as a very bad idea from the beginning is unthinkable. What is more unthinkable is that even now after 3.11 we have Japanese politicians still pushing for nuclear power. Utter lunacy.

          Anyway, I am babbling….


            @kintaman: thank you for the kind response. Given the issues you've raised, I think it important to get to your central frustration: being, given the quality of its people, how did Japan find itself it this situation and why can't they extricate themselves from nuclear power? In two words, organized crime.

            Over the last hundred-plus-years, a global network has evolved from individual groups of special interests and coalesced into a global empire of death. It was not necessarily its intent, but the results of its actions are obvious; regardless where you look. Japan's (and Germany's) attempt (in the nineteen-thirties) to remain independent of this nascent globalized system brought about great retribution and humbling destruction of these nations and their sovereignty.

            When the world became privy of the horrors of nuclear weaponry (as visited upon the people of Japan), political and military expediency called for a public relations campaign; aka, Atoms for Peace program. There was some initial resistance in Japan (from the political left and emerging environmentalist movement) but such objections eventually took a back seat to economic gains and the collusion of Japan's organized crime networks and industry.

            Though adept at its early adoption, the nation of Japan has become a victim of its success within the global marketplace. Given the dire need for (quiet) economic aid (to counter what's likely to be a budget breaker unlike all others), the Japanese government will have to walk softly as it leaves nuclear technology behind. (I'm watching now as many major Japanese multinationals are repositioning their corporate assets, within the global scene. They're not telling anyone out here, but they're all in a panic!) As the old Chinese proverb goes, "Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it!"

            Such is a humbling tale for all to reflect on.

            Hope some of this gave clue to the issues you've raised.

      • Ruffcut

        "It seems this is the new accepted reality."
        It is the only way for them to adapt to the crisis. Deep down they are terrorized and are using the only human tool to deal with it. Denial.

      • This is so sad 🙁 I wish the best luck for you and your family. Don't go back! It mush be very difficult, but you must protect your lifes…
        I've been a fan of Manga, Japanese music, Anime, fashion, culture, etc, for many years. I've always wanted to go to Japan, either to visit or even to live there. It's one of those things I really didn't want to die without doing. Last year, before March, I decided to postpone it again for another year or too, because of how expensive it was. I wish I had gone! I could at least see the place I love so much just once and remember it that way.
        Almost everyone I know doesn't care about radiation at all. It's so frustrating trying to warn them about it… I don't understand if everyone is in complete denial or if they just think "if it's not in the news it's not that important". Maybe both… How can so very few people see the truth??…

        • kintaman kintaman

          I hear you and understand your feelings. I am sorry you could not make it to Japan before 3.11.

          I have a friend who went to Tokyo recently and was there for several weeks. She had been posting photos of all the places she visited and ate at….for example sushi (who in their right mind would eat seafood in Japan now?) and many other restaurants. To me this is pure insanity but what can I say to her? She is a very intelligent person so it was very shocking to me. We also know a couple who's son lives in Tokyo and they are going this summer to visit him. I can, of course, say nothing as their son is there and we left. He does not seem to have a problem with the risks so I leave it at that but it amazes me how people can just ignore what happened after 3.11 (3 reactors exploding).

          But I think for the most part we have the media to thank for people's ignorance. There is no REAL journalism anymore, they just say what they are told to say and nothing more. The truth of the matter is that if the media (both in Japan and abroad) were to speak honestly of the danger from this ongoing disaster Japan would sink into the economic abyss. This would then bring down the entire global economy with it and that would be the end of everything as we know it globally (The Road/Mad Max?).

          Anyway, for those of us who have been paying attention this past year we know that $$ > human life to those running the show. There is NO denying it. It is just shocking to me how easily Japanese people have laid down to accept this. Equally shocking is how in the dark people in North America are….idiocracy it would seem.

      • Kintaman, tough situation, not knowing what to do and not even finding people who can give you understanding and empathy. Here is something I hope will help you see a new perspective and bring you peace, like it did for me.
        It's The Basics of Non Violent Communication, on youtube.

  • goathead goathead

    C"MON PEOPLE!!!!! RISE UP!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Spectrometising

      Oh yeah for sure goathead !! (Go for it.)
      Lets just wait for the universe/absolute to decide what to do.
      It is much better at justice than mere mortal earthlings lost in information overload.
      A view from above.

  • This is pretty said, last year September 15th 2011, "they" (physics eggheads) were calling cyclical physical phenomenon speculative, after the 4 sigma event of a massive minimum did occur already in the last several years.

    Sure, lets hope we don't get a Carrington event, but the comment in blue about how total loss of the grid has nothing to do with nuclear engineering. What a joke! It has everything to do with nuclear engineering, unless you just want to play your egg head games without having an annoyances like planning for a black swan that it guaranteed to happen sometime and would wipe out the human race.

    And price for the boys to play with their big important toys, any price including your life…roll the dice.


  • dear jones

    Is too late for the japanese now.

  • dave14139

    Wow! An honest newspaper. Very refreshing. Now we need the American media to get on-board. Nukes have been a terrible experiment.

  • jayjay jayjay

    UK nuclear sites at risk of flooding, report shows
    Rising sea levels because of climate change put 12 of 19 sites at risk, unpublished government analysis shows

    By Rob Edwards, the Guardian

    08 Mar 2012

    More from this author

    Be the first to comment

    As many as 12 of Britain's 19 civil nuclear sites are at risk of flooding and coastal erosion because of climate change, according to an unpublished government analysis obtained by the Guardian.

    Nine of the sites have been assessed by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) as being vulnerable now, while others are in danger from rising sea levels and storms in the future.


  • or-well

    A minor quibble;
    "…that it makes us so uneasy to speak about this speaks volumes about the state of politics in Japan."
    No kidding. It makes MORE sense substituting "corrupt neo-feudalism" for the the word "politics".

    They DO say "earthquake-prone country", not anomalous point-specific vertical earthquake-type conditions, thank goodness.

    I feel this is a welcome editorial, that "allows" people to talk openly, using the piece as a "center" around which they can conversationally explore, without having to appear interpersonally confrontational. We "in your face" societies (compared to them) may forget that.

    Of course, it won't begin to satisfy all or even some of the more detailed concerns often expressed here, but it's fantasy to think that it would, at least at this stage in time.

    What amazes me is that it discusses the aging of NPPs globally. At all.

    I am so shocked from the bluntness of various statements I am going to refrain from criticising shortcomings.

    I am VERY interested to see if this turns into a SERIES of editorials on this theme, or if other major Japanese media players get on board.

  • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

    +1 or-well.
    "The pain of people who have lost their hometowns."
    The pain of a people who have lost their homeland.
    The pain of a people who have lost their people.

  • goathead goathead


    "Dramatic fall in new nuclear power stations after Fukushima"

    "The drop in construction work on new reactors may reflect waning interest in nuclear after the shutdown of the Japan reactor a year ago"

    • aigeezer aigeezer

      Hi goathead. That piece has an encouraging theme but it seems to have its share of spin too:

      "the forced shutdown of the Fukushima reactor a year ago, in which no one was killed"

      Forced? (by whom or what)
      Shutdown a year ago (huh?)
      Reactor (singular)
      No one was killed (except for those who were)

      • goathead goathead

        Hi aigeezer, yes it's fraught with inaccuracies (lies). However, I doubt we can expect the mainstream press, Guardian being no exception, to do the right thing and report anything other than what has been put in front of them!! Some serious thought provoking investigative journalism wouldn't go astray now would it???

        "No one was killed (except for those that were)" sweeeeet!!!

    • James2

      In regards to the costs of the meltdown:

      "Why should the nuclear industry pay the bill when the public can"

      Because the nuclear industry cannot afford the cost of a catastrophic meltdown – and neither can the public.

  • Sickputer

    Yes…it is Time to Say Goodbye…

    This song will be played at my funeral:

    Two beautiful versions:

    This one by Sarah Brightman is for my Japanese friends:


    Thank you Sarah Brightman and Jackie Evanco! This beautiful high definition version is a classic and even a stoic may shed a tear:


  • bleep_hits_blades

    But aren't we in Hawaii & on the West Coast getting comparable levels of radio-nuclides in our air and rain – comparable to Tokyo, that is?

    Isn't what retali (above)says about those in Tokyo also true about those living in these areas – that quite possibly WE – millions of us, perhaps – have already inhaled/ingested a lethal dose of radionuclides?

    It appears to me that when the winds are not blowing the toxins towards Tokyo, they are blowing them towards HI and the West Coast of North America (and points beyond of course).

    So, if Tokyo should have been evacuated, shouldn't HI and the West Coast also have been (impossible, I know, but just theoretically and in point of fact?)

    I know these matters have been touched upon before here at enenews, but I have not seen them mentioned lately.

    So many of us are already 'dead men walking'…