Monday, 14 March 2011

Japan's tragedy

The whole world must be reeling at the continuing reports from Japan on last Friday's devastation by tsunami.
If anyone is unsympathetic to others' plight (and often we're not too good at it. I know I'm not) then we only need think that we ourselves can be hit by natural awfulness with no warning. Our own country has experienced, just in recent  months, flooding, fires, cyclones.

The scale of the Japanese event is far beyond the "average" disaster, seeming even greater because of the immediacy of news and imagery. But a macabre dimension is added: one reason that early reports had little to say about numbers of casualties was that entire towns of ten thousand, eighteen thousand, inhabitants were... wiped out. There was nobody to report, in effect, "no survivors" in those places.

The situation with the several stricken nuclear power stations is by no means under control, and what plays out in coming days and weeks is of concern far beyond the shores (altered as they are!) of the Japanese islands.

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