|Another one for Garry|
A year ago this morning I was on Sapphire in the
standing in the cockpit drinking my morning plunger coffee.. I had only just returned from working in Bay of Islands Marina and it was another month before I would start writing this Blog .I had slept well and it was a typical lazy Saturday morning, warm and sunny autumn, I felt good and I was excited to be back on board and preparing the boat for the journey east, to Tubuai.. Eventually my day dreaming was penetrated by the realization that the tide was flowing in past the boat at a remarkable speed, silent brown and swift. “Strange” I thought to myself, “why hadn’t I noticed that before?” Sapphire, and indeed all the yachts nearby were jostling about restlessly and being pushed forward into their berths, but then, as I watched, finishing my coffee it all slowed down and stopped. “Weird” I thought and went below to wash out the cup. Australia
What I had just witnessed was the first surge arriving in the
from the horrendous catastrophe, the Tsunami that had just devastated the north eastern coast of Bay of Islands only a few hours before. I discovered this a little later when, back on deck I noticed the brown water was surging in the opposite direction, and then at intervals throughout the morning, back and forth it went, silent, benign, relentless, giving no real hint of its violent and monstrous origins on the other side of the Pacific. “Whats going on?” I had asked of a man on the jetty as we stared at the water “Oh, its the Tsunami” he replied and wandered off. Japan
Having now watched those mesmerizing videos of that tsunami, seen that wall of water and ships and houses and cars and debris sweeping all before it, surging inland across fields and roads and villages, the tiny vans and cars racing away to try to escape, and seen the photos of the destruction left behind, I shudder when I think what was happening in Japan at that very moment as I sipped my coffee in the morning sun.
The media are of course reminding us of this anniversary. I watched a sad documentary about its effect on a few surviving children from a school where, when all the warnings were sounding, teachers gathered everyone outside and argued amongst themselves about moving them to an even higher refuge. It seemed impossible to imagine that the sea could ever reach the school, but it did just as they had realized they should flee, but it was too late. I also listened to a discussion on the radio about how the Media became obsessed with the unfolding drama at Fukushima, a potential nuclear holocaust which in fact didn’t eventuate – no lives were lost then or since at Fukushima – and , meanwhile the actual disaster and massive loss of human life elsewhere was somewhat forgotten about.
And then I read this article in the online NZ Herald by William Pesek– whoever he is – “A year after the nuclear disaster, let's see somebody being held accountable” A year after an earthquake in Japan touched off the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl, here's the question on my mind: Who's going to jail?
My first thought was “God”
His point seemed to be that if the Nuclear Power Plant wasn’t made sufficiently strong to withstand a massive earthquake and then a devastating tsunami, someone from what he labeled the Nuclear Mob must be accountable and should be in jail. It worried me a little that he was particularly concerned about the effect evacuation of
would have had on the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Stoxx Europe 600 Index. Others argue (read comments) that surprisingly little radioactive material was leaked, any contamination can be identified and removed, and not a single life was lost, thereby providing an illustration of how, even in an almost worst case scenario, a Nuclear Power Station built 40 years ago will not create a nuclear holocaust.. No one was arguing there aren’t lots of lessons to be learned or that its not going to be massively costly to clean up the mess. Tokyo
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