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Japan was wary of U.S. military taking control over Fukushima crisis

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Read this in the Mainichi earlier today during breakfast. Quite interesting reading actually.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The US military was amazing flying over Fukushima to measure the radiation. They had the destroyed Sendai airport working again after ten days. Critical for getting emergency supplies in. The USS Ronald Reagan carrier was moved off the Fukushima coast. Years later the sailors filling court cases for radiation exposure.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

I bet the situation would have been handled much better if the U.S. took over. We've all seen the results of J-gov's response.

15 ( +23 / -8 )

The carrier quickly exited.

They made a couple of photo op helicopter missions to a schoolyard post tsunami with some candy bars or something.

I remember it being a drone that was flown over Fukushima, not a manned flight.

The lawsuits were dismissed.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

I don't see what exactly in the terms of the US-JPN Mutual Defense Treaty or SOFA would call for or allow the US military to take control over a domestic disaster. I mean, when has the US military taken control over the response to a civilian nuclear crisis even within the United States?

2 ( +7 / -5 )

No mention of the SDF running away from Mr. Oriki? This article is strange, both for its timing and contents. Why now?

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Operation Tomodachi took place from 12 March to 4 May 2011; involved 24,000 U.S. service members, 189 aircraft, 24 naval ships; and cost $90 million.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

It wasn't a time to be worried about if the US Navy was going to take control or not. There was contradictory and sometimes no information coming out Fukushima Dai-ichi and the area. A lot of people throughout the archipelago were frightened and worried to death.

Priority one should've been safely getting the people out of the area if necessary and helping, in any way, to find and rescue people. This worry about power-play was disgusting at the time and it may me lose a hell of a lot of respect for this govt. knowing where their priorities were.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

If TETCO was honest and open about the extend of the disaster then the U.S. military would have NO reason to make any moves, but TETCO lied and was hiding several fact and so the prime minister had to fly over to see for himself the extend of the damage.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

I remember seeing news about what was happening in Fukushima on US news websites way before it was released to the Japanese public on TV here. It freaked me out that CNN seemed to share info before the Japanese media did. For that reason, I don’t trust the Japanese government about Covid-19 either. They hide too much to save face.

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Didn't the US try to help search for victims after that plane crash but were turned away by the Japanese authorities? Some of dead could have been saved.

When a child makes a damn mess and doesn't know what the heck to do, Mother has to take over.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

The US military reopened Sendai airport within weeks, but there was a very concerted effort, coordinated in advance, to keep their presence unknown so the Japan se wouldn't lose face. The NYTimes had a story on it

This crisis was extended longer than necessary because in the beginning, the Japanese were more concerned with saving face than they were with getting international experts to the scene.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

That decision is paid off, no new base in Fukushima after that.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The US military reopened Sendai airport within weeks, but there was a very concerted effort, coordinated in advance, to keep their presence unknown so the Japan se wouldn't lose face. The NYTimes had a story on it

I read about it at the time in the Japanese and foreign media, and the military media?

By 17 March military engineers partially opened the airport for tsunami response flights.

"To reopen the airport, on 16 March 2011, a U.S. Air Force MC-130P Combat Shadow from the 17th Special Operations Squadron infiltrated a team from the 320th Special Tactics Squadron from Kadena Air Base into Matsushima, Miyagi, then moved overland to the airport. With assistance from Japan Self-Defense Forces, enough debris was removed in a few days to allow an MC-130H Combat Talon II aircraft to begin landing with more equipment, personnel, and supplies. "

https://www.seattle.us.emb-japan.go.jp/about/CGletters/111121_TheStoryofSendaiIntlAirport.pdf

It was a great effort by the Americans.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Agree with @Alfie Noakes 5:50pm comments and questioning:

“This article is strange, both for its timing and contents. Why now?”

1 ( +5 / -4 )

After 10 years of the disaster and seeing how the locals have been affected I wonder if some of them don't wish the US took control of the situation.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

What this article illustrates what I have suspected since forever & that is that the US still has a massive grip on Japan IF it chooses to use it.

I believe this is a all from the end of WWII, my bet is there was plenty of secret deals cut & that the US agreed to keep secret a lot of info it has on Japan & things that were done during WWII that would how shall we say it, make Japan look rather bad if it came to light........just a theory, bet I am right on some of it!

0 ( +5 / -5 )

The article does offer a ‘sideways glance’, in the middle, at the current administration’s political opposition:

- “The handling of the crisis by the govt, led by then “Democratic Party of Japan”, sparked criticism at home, including its initial response and provision of updates at the power plant that suffered triple meltdowns.” -

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

With the ongoing pandemic and the looming Olympic debacle, maybe they’re wanting to spark comparisons of the LDP’s continuous fumbling in contrast to the CDP’s previous inability to handle crises:

Who do we vote for? Ask yourself: Who did a worse job, us or them?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Thanks to @zichi and @CaptDingleheimer for offering more, extensive coverage than this, somewhat anemic, Kyodo article. At that time, the situation here for them, @Speed, @knittyelf and others must have been just as frightening and frustrating as this last year’s continuous missteps and misinformation by the current adminstration.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I'm sure Japan much preferred having the US take over then having Russia come over here and do it, lol. I am bewildered that Mr edano is entrusted to head the Democratic branch of government here. I just remember his face on TV and him not telling us anything. That party will never get anywhere with him as a leader. There's a lot that went on and it just seems like he's there to keep the ldp in power.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Of course they were wary! Can you imagine something ACTUALLY getting done... by someone else? Because nothing was getting done here. Shimizu -- responsible for the plant -- ran off to Osaka complaining of a tummy ache. Kan didn't even KNOW about what was going on until one reactor building exploded. Then they spent... what... days thinking about what to do and panicking before the US mounted "Operation Tomodachi", resulting in a number of those military personnel later dying as the J-government said there was no proof it was a result of leaked radiation? The US wanted to dump water on it right away. The Japan-side was busy thinking about ways they could salvage the plant.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

“Frustration had grown over the lack of information provided by Japan”

as we are finding out again today, nothing has changed

5 ( +6 / -1 )

In Japan, it has been shown time and time again by the government that saving face is way more important than saving lives.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

In Japan, it has been shown time and time again by the government that saving face is way more important than saving lives.

No doubt. All governments seem to have the same behavior, such as the Soviet Union and Chernobyl, the US and the Vietnam war or during the Covid-19 pandemic when"... everything was under control and the US is doing a very good job."

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Judging by how badly things turned out, maybe they should have.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

when has the US military taken control over the response to a civilian nuclear crisis even within the United States?

The 1964 Good Friday Earthquake in Alaska is one example that comes to mind.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

No doubt. All governments seem to have the same behavior, such as the Soviet Union and Chernobyl, the US and the Vietnam war or during the Covid-19 pandemic when"... everything was under control and the US is doing a very good job."

Unlike China or Russia, the US and Japan have a free press that can and routinely does report the mistakes of government to the whole world. There is no equivalency between the US and Japan or their totalitarian adversaries. You would not even be allowed to comment critically in Russia or China. Very little in the US is secret. It is not possible in an open society.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The article states that TEPCO was concealing information.

The press is not to blame in the Fukushima accident.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I believe that help was offered by the US Navy after the great Kobe earthquake of 1995 and that too was rejected.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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