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Regarding The Washington Post article appearing on the front page of The Japan Times on June 27 titled “Nuclear redress will never approximate losses“: Media such as The Washington Post and even The New York Times are finally acknowledging that nuclear energy itself was not the cause of the angst and stress of Fukushima refugees. Instead, it was the almost criminally impulsive and uneducated responses of local and regional governments, sadly exacerbated by the nonresearched comments of Gregory Jaczko, chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The lessons of the Three Mile Island accident (1979) were not heeded, which would have greatly shrunk the radius of evacuation to only a dozen miles. Current on-ground Fukushima studies deem that distance adequate enough via international health and radiological bodies, including the World Health Organization.

American Nuclear Society members asserted at their annual meeting in Chicago last week that the Japanese government’s poor handling of public nuclear education for decades left a population susceptible to groundless fears that stroked the nightmares of those with a post-World War II animus toward nuclear energy.

It is telling that the majority of press reports cite Fukushima as a “nuclear disaster” instead of a “tsunami disaster,” since the term of disaster involves people being directly killed. Such a national mind-set set the stage for the haphazard mismanagement and exaggerated responses of the Fukushima evacuation.

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.

james greenidge

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