Monday, March 11, 2013

Japan Still Recovering from Triple Disaster

Days after the Tohoku tsunami caused great devastation in 2011.  (photo

Hard to believe but it was only 2 years ago when Japan was hit by a massive earthquake, tsunami, and a nuclear disaster all in one day on March 11, 2011.  The country plans a memorial service to the 19,000 victims, who died in the triple disaster on Monday. 

Japan Disaster, Caught on Camera

The footage of the Tohoku tsunami still brings chills to many that a disaster can happen at any time, anywhere.  The Indonesian tsunami was much more devastating but Japan's disaster was caught on camera from hundreds of people, who took video footage that revealed the northeastern part of the country devastated by the on-rushing water, showing the devastating power of mother nature.  

The triple disaster resulted in a 9.0 earthquake, a cataclysmic tsunami, and a nuclear catastrophe that has poisoned the land and waters of the northeast region of Japan.

According to AP, more than 300,000 people are displaced with an estimated 2,767 people are still missing. Today, there is a struggle to rebuild communities, clean up the radiation, and develop a new economic strategy for the Northeast region of Japan.  Tens of thousands of survivors are living in temporary housing and are becoming impatient with officials, who say that it may take them a decade to resettle the many displaced people.

Adults, as well as children, survived the triple disaster.  Many of them traumatized. (source: 

Japan's Northeast Region is a Ghost Town

Most of the towns in the region have been abandoned and are filled with empty houses and overgrown fields.        
There are many of the elderly, who don't want to leave the region because that is the only place they've ever lived.  The 160,000 people of Fukushima don't know if they will ever move back to their abandoned homes where the nuclear reactors spilled radiation on the surrounding soil and in the water.  No one knows how long the cleaning and decontamination efforts will take for the region.

The wait to resettle has caused many of the people to distrust the government officials, who make "empty promises" and whose cleaning efforts may be suspect. Much of the area is off-limits and most of the people are torn between returning home to an area where the radiation may be embedded in the soil and water. Many still suffer psychological effects from the disaster, thinking that the northeast region is not a safe place to return to anymore.

Many have left the region vowing never to return.

Pray for Japan and survivors around the world.  (source:wikimedia commons)

Pray for Japan  

Nothing can prepare you for such devastation and calamity.  Your emergency kit may last a few days or a week or months, but what happens after that?  You're going to rely on the local or federal government to help you?  As for the elderly, their remaining years are literally ruined.  The young people may move out of the region while they still can but the senior citizens have seen all what they worked for "go up in smoke" in just a few hours.

For those who haven't experienced a disaster like this, you are definitely the lucky ones.  Count your blessings that a calamity like this doesn't happen in your area in your lifetime.          

As for Japan, they will honor the dead but many in the country and around the world are praying for the living who have to survive what's left.


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