• Chikushino, Fukuoka

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Regarding the Dec. 18 article “Daunting tasks await despite declaration of cold shutdown“: The declaration of safety by various authorities is merely a matter of timing and saving face. Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s optimistic declaration of nuclear plant stability has angered people both at home and abroad.

In Japan, December means forgetting the old year. Everybody goes out to get drunk and let their hair down with the purpose of forgetting everything miserable that has happened to them in the preceding 11 months. This year they have more to forget than they have since 1945, when the first nuclear catastrophes struck.

True to his culture, Noda is sweeping Japan’s nuclear woes under the yearend carpet. The reality for Fukushima folk is something else. They live with their Geiger counters clicking while the Japanese government makes giant Elastoplast announcements at a safe distance — millions of microsieverts removed from the fears of those who can’t help but wonder how a nuclear threat potentially lasting for millennia could possibly be “safe” in a matter of months!

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.

david john

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