Regarding the Aug. 30 editorial “3/11 deaths that were preventable“: I would note that Japan’s Reconstruction Agency is not a medical committee and thus lacks the knowledge and training to reach any conclusion that can be taken seriously by medical professionals. The editorial is another hit piece against nuclear power.
Evacuations are always ordered on short notice; that’s why they’re called evacuations. You try to get as many people as possible out of an area deemed to be in imminent danger, usually because of a sudden, unforeseen disaster.
I would like to see the actual medical files for the “1,263 victims from municipalities” mentioned in the editorial. It’s unlikely that autopsies were performed on any of them. Without autopsy results, the claims made in the editorial are ridiculous.
Medicine works with facts and diagnoses, not assumptions and propaganda. Similar statistical logic is also fielded in the so-called studies against “passive smoking.” There are no corpses to back up the statistics, no autopsies. Medicine needs more than statistics.
Furthermore, if we really want to talk about “preventable deaths” related to 3/11, there are probably far more than the editorial says. The tally would have to include those who didn’t take the tsunami warnings seriously. But the idea of judging, in hindsight, precisely how many deaths could have been prevented is laughable.
The editorial refers to a Nagoya public hearing at which a Chubu Electric Power Co. employee was booed for stressing that no local residents had died so far of exposure to radiation from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. The employee was right. It’s interesting that the crowd of nuclear-phobics booed him. People in the crowd are tools being played by irrational anti-nuclear activists.
Any claims that a certain number of people died during or after their evacuation must be proven according to medical standards. If this procedure is not followed, the claims are irrelevant.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.