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Watashi-tachi no kangae de wa, toshite imasu.

While the earthquake would, no doubt, have had an effect, it seems as if the most devastation was the associated tsunami.

Image from NHK World.

Sadly, one of the main problems and cause of death would appear to be that the tsunami, with its origins close to the Japanese shore, arrived too quickly for measures to be put in place. That pictured below is a moving mass of water and, well, crap... all washed along at what I'd guess to be 20-30mph (32-50kph).

Image from Channel Five.

The NHK World report at noon (CET) itemised the missing, and repeatedly mentioned that many of those were from junior high schools. I wonder how much notice people had, if anything?

Image from BBC News 24.

As if this is not heartbreaking enough, NHK World was, at 8pm CET, broadcasting evactuation instructions in Japanese, Korean, Chinese, English, and a language I do not recognise, for pretty much the entire east/south coastline from Hokkaido in the north to the island of Okinawa. North of Tokyo, there were warnings of a possible 3 metre tsunami, south/west of Tokyo, a possible 2 metre tsunami. Has there been another earthquake out to sea? Or is this the original on its return bounce?

Image from Channel Five.

Add to this, another, smaller, tremor on the northwest of the main island. It has been a day I'm sure many would rather never happened.

Image from Channel Five.

What remains, aside from widespread flooding (and don't underestimate the impact of dumping huge amounts of salted water all over farmland, this cause be problematic for Japan's grain production), are a burning oil refinery, a troubled nuclear reactor, and that, below, which was a town. Two minutes of seismic violence, and its long-lasting effect.

Image from BBC News 24.

The British Foreign Office has issued a contact number for citizens:

UK Foreign Office helpline - 0207 008 0000
Citizens of other countries should probably contact their relevant embassy.


To the people of Japan - our thoughts are with you at this time.


Your comments:

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Rick, 11th March 2011, 23:32
For those who throw the Japanese phrase above into Google translate, I am not saying "we believe you". Please put a newline after the comma ' 、' and retranslate it, and you will see the meaning of the phrase changes dramatically.
Rick, 12th March 2011, 18:21
Here is a screenshot of an on-line conversation. There are no words to describe how utterly offensive this is. 
[premise: "Japan blew us up at Pearl Harbor, therefore they deserved it..." WTF?]
Rob, 13th March 2011, 01:07
It's horrific.. Entire trains missing even.. The country will never be the same again, that's for sure.  
And not to diminish the tragedy unfolding, but I wish people, and the Beeb in particular, would get the helpline telephone number right. It's 020 7008 0000. How many years has London been just "020" now?
Rick, 13th March 2011, 02:14
I'm sure you've seen the news - one of the trains was, erm, found. And never mind trains, entire towns are missing. :-( 
The thing is, though, the Japanese seem remarkably adept at trying again. Go Streetview around the residential areas to the northeast of Kōbe. All the houses look fairly new, don't they? It's because the Great Hanshin earthquake (January 1995) levelled the area (in twenty seconds, it caused $102.5 billion in damage and eventually ended the lives of 4,600). 
If you can stand the inane repetition, there is a programme in parts on YouTube. It is part of the "Seconds from Disaster" series from... who is it... National Geographic, I think. Search for "Great Hanshin earthquake". 
I believe Japan will recover, but it will be a difficult thing. The Japanese may need our help and confidence, and I hope we'll all be in a position to give them that. 
joe, 14th March 2011, 01:18
If 1 billion people donated $10.00 each, that would be $10,000,000,000.00 to help Japan to rebuild, provided 
100% of this money gets there. Some of these "organizations" actually promises to give 70%, because they have to pay fees to people in pink glasses, WTF? like prince Bono, $300,000.00 to $500,000.00 to convince the other people to give this $10.00. 
I was considering giving $100.00 but there is no information, where and how, avoiding these "organisations", of course.
Rick, 14th March 2011, 01:27
Hi Joe. It's a fair point that certain celebrities expect to be paid hansomely in order to convince others to donate. Kinda makes a mockery of it all, doesn't it? 
Anyway - this is why I provided links directly to The Red Cross, to bypass the celebrity-fest so hopefully more cash will make it to aid. Now, okay, I don't expect everything to make it to Japan (the Red Cross organisations do work all over the place), but I think it is the best start. 
If you don't feel like committing to $100, would you consider at least $10? There is an advert in the UK for a supermarket called "Tesco" which runs with the tagline "Every little counts"...
joe, 14th March 2011, 23:22
Donated to our Australian Red Cross and filling better now. These Americans who commented about Perl Harbor must be very proud of, what they accomplished in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It only shows how strong is their propaganda, no wonder why, having 200+ TV channels washes all you brain cells away.

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