Wednesday, September 07, 2011

A bomb survivor in Japan opposed to nuclear energy

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

TOKYO - for more than 65 years was the worst event in the modern history of Japan alone, with nothing after important enough, to change their lessons. Those who survived the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki decided that similar bombs should never be deleted. To ensure this result, they called the abolition of nuclear weapons.

Nuclear power, was another matter. Japan's nationwide survivor group energy collecting never against nuclear-generated, perhaps because many saw a redeeming justice in using it peacefully. Reactors could be the country's economy, makes they hoped by you the same power that caused so much damage.

Then the damage was on 11 March, also. The tsunami triggered meltdowns at three Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors were nowhere near acute or deadly as the disaster, which swallowed up Hiroshima. In both cases have been thousands of people to radiation, exposed to.

In both, thousands lost their homes. That's why, for Hiroshima of survivor Akira Yamada, which seem not so final of 1945 bombings. Saturday is the 66th anniversary of the bombing of his city, but the first on which he will vote against civilian nuclear energy.

"Yes, the are connected," said Yamada. "I can with both regrets."

To be seen as positive energy

Since the crisis of Fukushima, Japan has launched a nationwide debate on the merits and risks of nuclear energy program. The most ardent Atom activists are typically a history leave to speak, as if racing reactors in the 1970s the country ignored clear years to build, warning Aug. 6 and 9 August 1945.

But the most bomb survivors, known as Hibakusha, have long had a much more complex, and often positive view of nuclear power - explains partly why Japan now has reactors of along almost every rural swath of coastline, 54 in all, accounting for about 30 percent of national energy supply.

Some Hibakusha saw civilian nuclear energy as the opposite of the destruction that they had experienced. Some were nuclear energy researchers, paving the way for country-wide acceptance of the technology.

In its Charter documents Nihon Hidankyo, Japan nuclear bomb victims organisation, called for the prevention of nuclear war and the Elimination of nuclear weapons. But his statements on nuclear energy, even after accidents at Chernobyl and three mile Iceland, have been limited to occasional and unemphatic tenders better safety testing and research.

"Even if we had gone through the terrible experience, nuclear energy energy at that time was seen as the discovery of a second fire", said Nagasaki survivor Sueichi Kido 71. "were in a way we hope that nuclear power could be used as a great tool to make our lives better."

Now debated

In June instead of three months in the nuclear emergency unfolding of the northeast coast of Nihon Hidankyo of its annual meeting of the General Assembly in Tokyo. In recent years Yamada, said the event had grown predictable: survivors talking about their health and their friends, who had died. Sometimes they shared details of an ongoing lawsuit.

This time it was different. About 120 survivors in a conference room, where they spent two days in debate whether Hidankyo should call for a phase-out of nuclear energy, crowded. Two participants said an overwhelming majority, was killed. But several survivors from Hiroshima spoke about the nuclear energy plays key role in the Japanese economy. There were enough resistance to a debate fuel.

Yamada, 85, felt also conflict. 1951 Had moved to Fukushima city, where he taught the history of Economics at the University of Fukushima. In the 1960s he had studied, work migration trends and he pointed out, such as children and young people in isolated parts of Fukushima Prefecture were forced all but jobs in Tokyo. This changed with the construction, in 1967 the first nuclear reactor in Fukushima Daiichi.

As one of two representatives of Fukushima at the meeting of Yamada said "I was in a difficult situation." He about 30 bomb survivors still live in Hama-Dori, in which close said the plant, and all were concerned with plant activities. It had sustained her career and her children. "she hung on this work," he said. At the same time, he found too notable to ignore the similarities between meltdown and the bombings. A bomb had blown sechsundsechzig years ago shingles off the roof of his house, and he had climbed up there to see "A fireball swallow the whole city."

Now he lived 40 miles from the exploding buildings at a nuclear power plant, and he felt compelled to urge local authorities to provide full life that were subjected to medical treatment.

"People, been through radiation exposure of whatsoever - they all have the same risks" Yamada said. "It is consistent with the ideas of Hidankyo to speak."

That's what Nihon Hidankyo decided to do. Called after the 8th June session Terumi Tanaka, Secretary General of the Organization for the decommissioning of the reactors, which was shut down for the controls. A month later, after an executive group for the first time for the "Elimination of the nuclear power generation." meet called

Kido, Nagasaki survivor, called him a "historical transition". He regrets, however, that the Group of the change earlier in time to prevent that a new horror made had not.

Special correspondent Ayako Mie contributed to this report.

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