I’m sure your thoughts are with Japan. If not, read now. The death count is unbearable, the initial Hollywood-style video footage has become merely a prelude to the suffering which is happening in its wake.
In Haiti last year, the earthquake brought with it artificial disasters: US imperialism. the squabbling cash divisions of NGOs, everything except real Haitian government. Now in Japan the natural, unchangeable series of events have been worsened by the Nuclear material artificially created and left in its path. The exploding reactors are not merely a part of the natural disaster, they are an avoidable exacerbation of suffering.
A friend of mine said to me earlier today “It’s times like this that I wish I hadn’t studied physics at University.” Most of us don’t understand what the effects to a nuclear disaster in Japan would be, but many who do are saying that this is worse than the Chernobyl disaster 25 years ago.
Nuclear power and weapons have not gone away, we have merely taken them out of public thought. And the horrors of nuclear material remain. This is the kind of disaster which has made so many of us oppose nuclear power even in the face of climate change, even in the face of those citing the clean, safe, responsible nature of modern nuclear technology. It’s only purpose is to secure short term profit, never mind the human cost it has levied for decades in Japan, Russia and beyond. It isn’t clean, and it isn’t safe.
If any good can come out of this disaster, maybe it is that we can finally end the absurd calls for increased nuclear power, and turn our backs on its foul technology, and overturn a politics which puts short-term profit over life itself.