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126 U.S. military members to sue TEPCO

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But, there was no cover up by TEPCO. The TEPCO investigators said so!

5 ( +15 / -10 )

I feel very sorry for these service men and women! They were sent right into Fukushima!! Now some have cancer, etc...shame on Japan! Shame on Tepco!!

-10 ( +16 / -26 )

This american culture of lawsuits does no good for any society and why are military people able to sue for being put into situations? If they don't like it, they should get a different job. That is why the people who do serve their countries with honor are so greatly respected.

14 ( +29 / -16 )

This is the kind of bullsh*t we can expect more of if Japan joins the TPP.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What would you expect from a group of people who come from a country which contains 6% of the world's population, yet contains nearly 60% of the world's lawyers? I hope whichever judge hears this case has the good sense to throw it out,

8 ( +21 / -13 )

Here comes America where anything can become subjects of lawsuits.

20 ( +27 / -9 )

Seeking an easy payoff? C'mon, don't you know how hard it is to find a decent lawyer these days? And even then I have to keep up with case developments and so forth. I deserve this money. I'm number one.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

So, if TEPCO had said that the risk of radiation was high, and that it was dangerous, but their commanding officers still ordered them to do the job, what would they do. The are military, they cannot disregard a direct order could they. If these people have health problems caused by this, I feel for them, but shouldn't there beef be with the US Navy? Or do their lawyers think that TEPCO would be easier to get money out of. Too bad, they have none!

13 ( +15 / -2 )

The plaintiffs says the have suffered a number of ailments that they say are linked to their exposure, including headaches, difficulty concentrating, rectal bleeding, thyroid problems, cancer, tumors and gynecological bleeding.

Have similar symptoms been reported in Japan?

Only the lawyers will get rich from this.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

So....am I to understand that the men and women in our armed forces rely on civilian information of a foreign country to determine radiation safety levels? Our naval ships are trained for combat in areas where strategic nukes may have been used but we don't have the ability to measure radiation safety levels? Why aren't these plaintffs suing the UNS and USMC who ordered them into these zones? Because they know an action like that has an ice cubes chance in hell of getting off the ground. This type of action apart from sounding like the brainchild of an greedy American "lawyer" has the potential to affect our relationships with every country that hosts our troops and affect US foreign policy. I hope the US court judge throws this into the recycle bin where it belongs. And if not, I can think of a suit by the US State Department against each of these plaintiffs for willfully attempting to interfere with US foreign policy.

20 ( +21 / -2 )

This is pathetic. Never mind that the Reagan was not close enough to Fukushima for any kind of potentially harmful exposure. The plaintiffs have no reason to sue TEPCO. They say TEPCO deceived the Navy about the radiaton danger, but that is BS. What about all the instruments onboard whose purpose is to detect radiation, both from within and without? On the GW, in port at the time, they picked up very small amounts of radiation from Fukushima. If GW could detect radiation from a couple of hundred kilometers away I would think CVN-76 could tell if they were sailing into harm's way.

Whether or not the plaintiffs are sick from Fukushima (I don't think so) is irrelevant. TEPCO did not endanger them. The US Navy did. Of course, you cannot sue the military so these people, looking for easy money, are suing whomever they can . . . in what I assume is an American court . . . that cannot force TEPCO to pay.

13 ( +18 / -6 )

Oh well, so much for Operation Tomodachi, to lend a helping hand even in the face of dangers.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

including headaches, difficulty concentrating, rectal bleeding, thyroid problems, cancer, tumors and gynecological bleeding. '

Cancer? In two years? Also, if you get enough radiation to be bleeding from all of your orifices, you aren't going to last two years. What did they do, go through some old Hiroshima photos to make up a list of symptoms?

10 ( +11 / -1 )

I don't know U.S. military members say they have all that stuffs are even true....I know for people even they fake they are sick in war and other stuff to have full cover pension and benefit for not work I don't know....... Let hope the justice and law always will be fair.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I don't think they have a case and since the US military turned off most of their radiation meters it is very damning looking the other way also. I would very much like to hear their story however and if their case gets thrown out they need to write a book.

I still don't think people understand how damaging this radiation can be. Those people that moved away as soon as possible were the smart ones. -You made the right choice.

US Military uses depleted uranium also. -Many issues with that especially when shot out of a weapon (vaporizes).

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Tepco did not deceive them about radiation levels. Just read newspapers. Tepco had no radiation level readings because there was no electricity or communication after the earthquake. The first readings were supplied by the US government radiation "spy" satellites and equipment brought into Fukushima by the US government (as part of the equipment they brought in to monitor radiation all around Japan).

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Stay strong. There are some that don't want to see them succeed. I wish them all the best.

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

The U.S. Navy was fully aware of the radiation levels in the area. If these plaintiffs were ordered to operate in the area despite this knowledge, then they need to seek compensation from the U.S. government, not TEPCO. It wasn't just TEPCO that was downplaying the dangers from Fukushima radation.

"It's important to note that the levels of radiation these air crew members are being exposed to are very, very low and not a cause for alarm. It is something that we have to watch very carefully and make sure that we are able to monitor and mitigate against." - Palmer Pinckney, chief of public affairs for the US Navy's 7th Fleet.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

PS Unlike what the lawyer says, Tepco is not "government owned".

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Not sure if they have a case, but I wish more Japanese would sue.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Unlike with domestic cases, they're not going to be able to shut this up very easily, and once it makes further ripples in international waters TEPCO's going to feel a whole lot more pain. Hopefully not only does this lead to some compensation for the victims, but an overall dissemination of information as to what REALLY happened and what TEPCO hasn't told us is going on. We all know they are lying, have covered up things time and again (and not just in Fukushima, but Niigata and other incidents) but said they haven't, and have been involved in all sorts of shady practices and corner cutting. This incident could have been avoided -- or at least the extent of the damage, if they had bothered to listen to warnings from YEARS back, or used the common sense to maintain their equipment timely, etc.

Good on these people, and best of luck! The key is international pressure. Don't try it just in local courts or it'll get swept under faster than Shimizu ran on 3/11.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Money grabbing move.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

It all has to do with illegitimate authority, obedience, and lies. Tepco lied, the US military lies about Agent Orange exposure, you forfeit your rights when you sign up to serve "your" country.....US blue collar soldiers, Japanese day laborers recruited through Yakuza to clean the plants, even long before Fukushima. Genpatsu gypsies they are called. And recently come to light is how the US military fudged the figures on radiation exposure of atomic bomb victims to make it seem that radiation induced illnesses were less than they were....it all serves to prop up Empire and the military industrial complex. The only way forward is to fight illegitimate authority. Uninformed wisecracks about people quick to sue play into the hands of those who want free reign to destroy the environment and people's lives as long as it is good for the nuclear industry and weapons makers and serves to reinforce the illusion that a strong military preserves the peace, while in reality keeping the world on a war footing increases profits for the likes of Lockheed and GE. Even assuming that some soldiers are just looking for a chance to get some free money, the real criminals in Tepco and METI get off Scott free. Another example of how confused things are is how a WHO report on cancers, tailored to avoid alienating their cohorts in the IAEA by citing a very low figure, get twisted by the Japanese gov, who portray even these conservative estimates as alarmist. It is all designed to keep the wool pulled down over people's eyes, with the help if a compliant media who get their advertising revenue from the likes of Tepco and its agency, Dentsu. So more power to anyone helping to expose the crimes of governments and corporations alike.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

this is totally groundless, one of the worlds leading experts on Nuclear science and radiation poisinong, Dr Graham Allison was on BBC last week and specifically said that the area around the reactors was safe almost immediately and that the dangers have been greatly exagerateed, he said that the residents could go back today and be fine, and that the danger is less than what comes from the ground in most areas of the US today.

this is another example of modern americans being selfish and rude and totally inappropriate for the role they were placed in they ere there to help not exploit Japan. I am ashamed to be an American to see such blantant abuse happening and the courts should have refused the case for they have NO jurisdiction over Japan at all. What a sad story.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Whether you agree with suing or not, finding qualified Japanese scientists silenced by TEPCO will be easy enough, plus all the documentation presented and ignored. Any day TEPCO faces the music is a good day

2 ( +5 / -3 )

In the US lawyers solicit such lawsuits and stand to keep most (at least 50%) of any recovery or settlement they can get. They often pay the "plaintiffs" money in "support" in advance of any recovery. And of course the judges that permit this scam are lawyers too, planning to retire as senior partners in the same law firms that appear before them now. In many states judges are elected and lawyers are the main source of campaign funds. This legal con game has nearly destroyed manufacturing in America, lots of rich lawyers though.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Wait, I'm feeling under the weather today... Hey, since I went aboard the Reagan several times during Operation Tomodachi and possibly even shook hand with some of these Sailors maybe I should look into suing too? This is gold digging at its worst. I'm ashamed that these charlatans came from the Navy and Marine Corps. The fact that there are shore-based dependents in the list of plaintiffs should tell you enough...

7 ( +9 / -2 )

A couple of things that matter greatly not mentioned enough in the media. TEPCO and GoJ lied to the US about radiation levels. The US wasn't actively monitoring things until around the 16th. Then the govt agencies went into panic mode. There is proof of this in the NRC FOIA documents.

After the 16th when the Reagan realized levels were way higher than TEPCO or GoJ was telling US officials the US had DOE monitoring on the ground and took more action. I fully expect to eventually see action against the US military for what went on. There was clearly not enough precaution taken on the ship and none of the enlisted got iodine.

It isn't just the air doses. Some had more concentrated exposures due to handling filters, contaminated gear etc. If you can find the actual video of the press conference it makes all of this make more sense.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

If they don't like it, they should get a different job

Kind of hard when one is in the middle of a contract and if they "broke" said contract would probably be thrown in jail and have it affect the rest of their lives.

They take an oath to serve and to protect against "enemies both foreign and domestic" but last time I checked the US wasn't at war with Japan nor TEPCO and the US Military willingly assisted the people in the disaster.

TEPCO screwing them is something different. Let them have their day in court, and if it's proven that their illnesses are a direct result of their work at Fukushima then by all means have TEPCO compensate them.

If not then take a hike. BUT they should, as with anyone with a beef with TEPCO have their day in court.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Not only TEPCO should be sued but the GOV itself for allowing such Nazi companies rule and ruin this country into the ground with backward mentalities that existed only in stone age. Now the Japanese can see that foreigners and foreign countries are NOT a Joke! Your actions have consequences!

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

I think Japan's government and businesses together lie about stuff. Happy if they'd have to answer in non-Japenese court.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I'm sincerely sorry to the government of Japan for the actions of these individuals as they are not representative of the whole. The US military medical system "should" provide the appropriate care for theses individuals if their medical condition and ailments were due to exposure to harmful radiation while performing their assigned duties as they are claiming. If they believe their ailments are due to military orders placing them in situation which caused their exposure, then their issue rests with their chain of command, service and the Department of Defense, not the country where they were serving as Japan did not direct US service members to take action. Their service and the DoD (ie their country) did. And are dependents really trying to get a piece of this? That, is more ridiculous then the service members claim.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

After the 16th when the Reagan realized levels were way higher than TEPCO or GoJ was telling US officials the US had DOE monitoring on the ground and took more action.

Yep, that would be because the levels were rising. Also, the US were monitoring way before the 16th, there was an article on here a while back claiming the US intelligence on levels was ignored by Japan from the initial release. These servicemen are just in it for the money, they know they can't sue the people who sent them there (US government) so they are trying to make a quick buck. Pretty disgusting, and will cost money whether they win or not and the only people to suffer will be the people who pay (again) elevated electric bills to cover those costs.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Here it shows the true color of rental army...this is why we need our own army. The rental mercenaries are just that.....lame.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The plaintiffs says the have suffered a number of ailments that they say are linked to their exposure, including headaches, difficulty concentrating, rectal bleeding, thyroid problems, cancer, tumors and gynecological bleeding.

How could they prove these conditions are caused by their action in Fukushima. So many total numbers of people by now have worked there since then. Why this is happening only for the 126 people here? They could be victims but unless some hard evidence comes together. I can not trust this kind of grope law suit. Just like the grope law suit for Toyota. So many lawyers for Toyota case manifested some lawyers's dishonesty and abusing laws. When I found out how they manufactured the case and fabricated the facts that they used during their law suit then. Then they lost.

I know they will not win in this Fukushima case. I wonder if the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier which supposed to be a military ship. Even there is not any instrument to check radiation level? How are other people who were there from the same ship?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

And literally 10's of thousands of us who also participated in Operation TOMODACHI now weep tears of shame. Every freaking bit of help we provided will be overshadowed by these a$$holes.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Radiation detected at Yokosuka Naval Base By unclaimed | Posted March 14, 2011

Low levels of radiation were detected at 0700 Japan time at Yokosuka naval base. Although the levels were detected at 0700 the memo was not released until hours later. Military and family are asked to stay indoors. The base is approximately 280 miles south of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. My sister just recieved the following memo from Commander- Fleet Activities. ** FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE *** At approximately 0700 local (Japan) time, 15 March 2011, sensitive instrumentation on USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN 73) pier-side in Yokosuka, detected low levels of radioactivity from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Nuclear Power Plant. While there is no danger to the public, Commander, Naval Forces Japan is recommending limited precautionary measures for personnel on Fleet Activities Yokosuka and Naval Air Facility Atsugi, including: A. Limiting outdoor activities. B. Securing external ventilation systems as much as practical. These measures are strictly precautionary in nature. We do not expect that any United States Federal radiation exposure limits will be exceeded even if no precautionary measures are taken. We are continuing to analyze the situation and will update you as we learn more.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Actually the Navy directly helped with the cooling of the reactors. So that is the only way really I think they could have been exposed. The Navy brought in 500,000 gallon water barges and other equipment to help with that. So no matter what people say, it is possible that Marines were exposed. As far as Naval ships, doubtful. The Navy has strict regulatons pertaining to radiation and so a ship would have been restricted as it was at the beginning of the meltdown. This exposure most certainly happened during the time of either spraying or dropping water on the plant. But with all the sophisticated detection devices the US has, how could a soldier have not known what they were being exposed to? Also, it is rumored that Japanese workers were exposed to higher levels of radiation than previously reported. Thus those people may die of cancer. Each individual is different and reacts different so we should not condemn any of them just yet. I do agree that if people are bleeding, then it does not fit other cases of exposure in that they are alive and able to file a lawsuit.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Money grab - nothing else. What's next? A lawsuit against the Taliban? As a former Marine I am truly embarrassed.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

TEPCO were villains yesterday. Now everyone can patriotically rally around them as they fight the big bad GIs.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

why, atleast its easier to sue a Japanese company, albeit backed up by the government, then it is to sue your own country. It is worth noting that numerous court cases have been lodged against the US government, from military personal been exposed to radiation and the like.. the so called gulf war syndrome, and failed (lack of scientific evidence). The world is polluted with radioactive material.. in all honesty, the use of highly radioactive nuclear waste, and its use in conventional warfare, has polluted the soil, the water, the air.. across the known wars, in which the western powers have participated in.. still, there is no scientific evidence to prove, that, child birth defects, are remotely related to such.. instances of war.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

There has to be a better way to handle the real victim(s) if applicable in good faith through diplomatic channel, rather than lawsuit. Few Americans have adopted same policy that never turned the crisis into waste, does it sound familiar? America is dominating by lawyers that backing up by liberal media promoting the victim ball game, politics of classes, illegal immigration...ultimately favoring the other 1% of fat cats at the top of ladder (union boss, lawyers, politicians..).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I do hold TEPCO guilty of failure to reveal and obstructing access to vital information that could help in a proper assessment of the magnitude of the risks resulting from the nuclear plant accident, but I think these servicemen should be suing the Pentagon, not TEPCO. As the department deploying an expeditionary volunteer team to the area, it had the responsibility and resources to make an independent assessment and provide the necessary protective gear to all the servicemen.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

No body likes being lied to, but that is exactly what TEPCO did. TEPCO lied about the radiation and thus removed any option people had of protecting themselves against it. Furthermore TEPCO have avoided all accountability for the disaster they created. The Japanese government is party to the fact, so if anyone is going to make them accountable it will have to come from an external source. In this case it just happens to be the US service members.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

what's likelier, these servicemen making this all up, or this nuclear reactor causing them cancer? the lack of transparency in your motives and spin will make some of you great politicians.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

This news have been posted before at JT. If these case and quick making bucks lawyers are suing Tepco and who knows later on JGovt, they should first sue Iraq for the US soldiers killed and injured during US invasion of Iraq. And so with soldiers injured or killed in Afghanistan during their call of duty. .... etc..etc..etc.. these are the kind of lawyers that's not doing the world any good and can be called extortionists.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

My guess is some of these people ARE sick from radiation, not sure about the 100 others joining. So some deserved, some probably not. Hate the US or not, at least someone is challenging TEPCO for this MAN-MADE disaster. What real punishment have they faced? No one is in jail from what I understand. "Too big to jail?" Better than the typical shrugging of shoulders, letting TEPCO & J-gubnent get away with killing and poisoning its own people. So if this lawsuit gets shot down, maybe others will take up the cause and demand more from Japan.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

while i would tend to agree that americans can be litigious, its actually a great deterrent to folks/companies/governments that think they can get away with anything

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

So, 126 people have joined a lawsuit, and of course these 126 people expect to get some kind of money. I assume that all the plaintiffs are representated by a single law firm, who went out in search of every soldier who was sent to Fukushima. The firm will charge the usual 40% of any award, plus expenses. The expenses will be considerable as the law firm will have to hire consultants, translators, and make many business-class flights to Japan to take depositions, etc. Of course, they will stay at the best hotels, and eat the finest restaurants that Tokyo has to offer. Adding the expenses, the law firm will likely get 60% of any award or settlement, and whatever remains will be divided 126 ways.

Years ago I was on a list of plainiffs in a class-action lawsuit against the Ford Motor Company. The law firm won a multi-million dollar settlement, and after taking their half of the award, they divided what remained among us plaintiffs. I was sent a check for 18 cents.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Trying to get a financial gain off the back of a disaster is just disgusting... Revolting... The likelyhood of these people being contaminated to the point that they're bleeding etc is, in all probability, a big fat zero...

5 ( +6 / -1 )

So they had no radiation detectors? The ship's captain should have ensured they were all wearing detectors... if they weren't issued with them, then sue the Captain. If they were wearing them, they would have had warning if the radiation levels got too high.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This lawsuit will most likely be thrown out of court. Those who separate the service will wind-up in the VA for any future radiation-related issues and for medical disability compensation. End of story.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"worlds leading experts on Nuclear science and radiation poisinong, Dr Graham Allison"

I'm not sure what this means, but perhaps the gist of it is that the owners of nuclear power plants call this person one of the "world's leading experts on radiation poisoning..." He is no more objective about the situation than these American sailors. I doubt that their current problems are caused by exposure from Fukushima but future problems may well be. It is clear that they got a higher dose than the American government expected or intended. Anything that keeps the pressure on Japan's government is welcome.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Was Tepco forcing them to help clean fukushima??....Perhaps they need to take this lawsuit to their command.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Note: The powerplant used GE Design.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

These people are idiots and do dishonor to the uniform they wear or wore. Regardless if they are or not suffering from radiation related problems there were uniformed service people doing a job they were ordered to do. If they didn't think risk was involved and that they could be ordered to their death they should never have joined. This is just another example of the I deserve something for nothing attitude that is creeping into all levels of society these days. Shame on them.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Hahaha, "tough" American warriors, SHAME ON YOU !!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yes, technosphere, why are we paying for the US military to protect Japan if they are such whimps? Waste of tax money. We can defend ourselves. They might sue us if they are injured fighting in a war to defend Japan. Shouldn't the US Defence Department be looking at this carefully? It is full of implications for the US military also. @hkitagawa, note that the main components were also built by GE and shipped over here. The other plants with the same design made by Toshiba and Hitachi have much less problems.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

All Japan needs is the Fukushima 50, not a bunch of whimps.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Sorry, I modify the above comment. I don't want to impugn evey US military member.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Operation Tomodachi II

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Suing a Japanese company in an American court is next to useless. They will never see any money. US military members suing the people they were suppose to be helping, disgusting! Even if they knew the full risks they still had to follow lawful orders. Does anyone with a working brain think that the US military just accepted a companies numbers? Well it is a small number and proves there is always a number of "nuts" in the trees.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

If those people have really problems or reason to sue, they have right to do it. I see many premature judgments here in comments. Japan Today please follow this story closely. Thank you.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If those people have really problems or reason to sue, they have right to do it.

They do. Only there is this small matter they (on the instigation of the law firm) are suing the wrong defendant. It'll be interesting to see the testimony related to medical evidence, tying the alleged symptoms to the environment they worked in, showing the proof what the plaintiffs suffer from is directly linked to nuclear radiation and not to stress caused by imagined or suggested exposure.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Tabacco makers have argued that there is no link between smoking and cancer. Who is going to argue that a few millirads is enough to cause cancer? Not only that, as we know from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it takes more than 2 years for cancers to start appearing. If they really had radiation sickness, they would not be giving interviews with the press. They would be in a hospital under quarantine.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Beside the ridiculous and typical US claim, it might make the truth of what happened, who knew what while not communicating to the bottom people like us, to the light. This is the only good face of that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is so sad, that the USA has been so populated by attorneys and their victims, now using US service members as their pawns, to blame some "deep pocket" target for, what, an earthquake? The tsunami? I think 4 out of 5 thinking atheists would say its reasonable to call the 3/11 disaster an act of God, but this lawsuit is an act of sheer greed coupled with stupidity. All the good will from Operation Tomodachi flushed down the toilet by these... Its shameful. To the people who work for TEPCO and its shareholders, I am truly sorry. I do not blame you for 3/11 and all the negatives that followed as a result of that natural disaster. As an American, know that those others do not speak for me. When someone joins the US Army, you know that you will, or may, be placed in harms way; then to turn around and sue the host country's private company devastated in the disaster? Jeez.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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