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Tomáš Kunert comments

Posted in: Why did those foreigners who decided to leave Japan in the aftermath of the March 11 disaster come in for so much derision from some people who labeled them with words like 'flyjin?' See in context

I'm foreigner who came to JP about 4 months ago. The only earthquake I've experienced was about week before the big one, so the big one was my second encounter. In my country we don't have any earthquakes, tsunami, typhoons, tornados or whatever. I live north east from Sendai so the earthquake was quite big here and I understand people who left Japan after the earthquake. Let me explain why.

Imagine you are in foreign country. Big natural disaster happens (earthquake in this case). You have no electricity so you can't cook, your room is cold (if you still have one), water is not running (and later only cold one because no electricity), shops are closed, only few selling the rest of food they still have left since the earthquake. Mobile network barely works so your access to informations is very limited and when you manage to connect to internet through your mobile (after you spent 1,5h queuing for another 1,5h of charging of your phone) you see only confusing informations about the accident in Fukushima and pictures from places completely swept by water. Some countries are sending planes to evacuate their citizens from Japan. Your relatives and friends are asking you to return home. So, now you can decide. Would you stay in this foreign country or would you return back home to Japan?

As regards me, few days after the earthquake, when electricity still wasn't running, I decided to move to Tokyo and stay there for few days to see how situation progresses and decide either to leave or stay. Eventually I stayed and returned back to north after few days but I don't see anything wrong on some people's decision to leave Japan and return home. Nobody wants to suffer or even die when it's not inevitable...

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