25 MAR 2012
ADI ROCHE, IRISH ANTI-NUCLEAR ACTIVIST OF NOTE, VISITS FUKUSHIMA JAPAN, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. during a fact-finding trip an Irish supporter of children affected by the 1986 Chernobyl disaster discovered “many mirror images” between the crisis here, and Chernobyl, world’s worst nuclear accident, which still haunts people in many contaminated zones. Adi Roche (56), is CEO of the charity group(NPO ?) “Chernobyl Children International”, based in Cork, Ireland. She offered encouragement to the people living near the stricken Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), At a meeting in Koriyama, Japan in early March 2012 She said: “Chernobyl survivors want you to know that their hearts are with you…In a demonstration of solidarity…Chernobyl survivors understand the loss of community, the loss of culture, the loss of lives that you know and the loss of health and the loss of even life itself… and are shedding tears for the people of Fukushima whose lives are so dramatically altered by this terrible event.”
AWARD WINNING ANTI-NUCLEAR ACTIVIST Adi Roche established a support group for children, in what is now Ukraine on 1991. Roche, whose group has brought more than 22,000 children from Ukraine, Belarus and western Russia to Ireland for rest and recuperation, endorsed Sato’s argument that Fukushima children under post-disaster stress need a similar program in Japan, and that efforts to protect kids from adverse effects of radiation, require public funding; (ADI’S WORK ARE REAL DEEDS; NOT JUST TALK).
SADLY, IN KORIYAMA CHILDREN ARE TOLD NOT TO PLAY OUTSIDE for lengthy periods. An indoor playground that the municipal government opened in Dec. 2011 has drawn more than 80,000 visitors; That is how scarce approved (safe from radiation) grounds are today.
ON 11 MAR 2012, ADI ROCHE MET WITH POLITICIANS, MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES AND CITIZENRY impacted by the Fukushima crisis. Her visit to Japan was clearly timed to coincide with the first anniversary of the 11 mar 2011 Dai No.1 triple NPP meltdowns. In Koriyama, some (60 km west of the Dai No.1 NPP), Roche shared her experience of providing medical and humanitarian assistance to Chernobyl’s (Ukraine) children with her Japanese counterpart Ms. Sachiko Sato…
MS. SACHIKO SATO (53), MOTHER OF FIVE (5) CHILDREN is a representative of the 600-member “Fukushima Network for Saving Children from Radiation” Ms. Sato, from the Fukushima town of Kawabata (some 40 km northwest of the NPPs), said she gave up organic farming due to high levels of soil radiation she detected on her own land after the NPP triple meltdown, and sent four(4) of her five(5) children to live in neighboring Yamagata Prefecture. Hearing Sato’s account of the situation faced by Fukushima residents right after the outbreak of the crisis, Roche expressed concerns that distribution of anti-radiation iodine tablets was slow, and that conflicts arose among citizens in the prefecture because of differing levels of anxiety about radiation, resulting from lack of public information, misinformation, and even disinformation.
MS. ADI ROCHE IN TOKYO -AFTER VISITING FUKUSHIMA PREFECTURE, said: “mothers in the prefecture clamored for my attention to ask questions about the effects of radiation” on their children: those mothers share with Chernobyl survivors “fear, paralysis, depression and uncertainty about their future, a deep sense of loss and confusion as a result of misinformation or sometimes no information…In Chernobyl, I know the first casualty was truth…I know that there must be some balance in telling the truth that doesn’t panic and doesn’t immobilize the citizens, But also there must be some reality, some hard information given that must offer people choices before things go critical.” During a meeting with Mizuho Fukushima, leader of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), and a longtime nuclear opponent, Roche agreed that people who voluntarily evacuated, and those who decided to remain in the area, should both receive public support; Roche added: “people should be given the right information to make an educated decision to stay or not to stay…Information is power, and I think information gives us freedom, psychologically and emotionally,” (THERE! – SHE TACKLED THE “PUBLIC RIGHT TO KNOW” ISSUE HEAD-ON; NO ONE IN JAPAN HAS HAD THE COURAGE TO DO SO. WE CONCUR WITH HER) See also next para. about that issue.
PEOPLE DESERVE THE WHOLE TRUTH. Having supported many Chernobyl children who suffered from diseases such as thyroid cancer and heart problems, Roche said: “inhabitants of radiation-contaminated zones should have access to information on the long-term effects of low-level radiation exposure through the food chain, because the latency period for such exposure lasts for a few decades…to address daily fears of people over radiation, it is necessary to be honest and provide the whole truth…not watered down, not monitored, not edited, not interpreted but told directly…When authorities don’t know for sure about the health risks, they should honestly say so, suggest the possibilities with data on radiation levels and give an alternative to eating potentially contaminated food as a precautionary measure…a multi-faceted approach is needed in providing information to the public, so that a mixture of people who don’t have vested interests are involved, and recipients of the information will have trust in it”.
TOKYO ELECTRIC POWER CO.(TEPCO) CRITICIZED Roche said: TEPCO managed the news on the crisis in a manner that caused a complete lack of trust among people…TEPCO was like playing a poker game with the lives of Japanese people. They have only shown arrogance and disrespect and a complete disregard for the lives of the people,” (WE THINK SHE DOES NOT LIKE THEM ! – WE DON’T EITHER!).
We tip our hat in deep respect to Adi Roche, a courageous, intelligent, and benevolent woman, who s not afraid to “tell it like it is”. She reflects credit on her Organization, and on Ireland. Wish our world had more persons with such inclinations.
Thanks to “The Japan Times – on Line”, 24 Mar 2012, for their excellent quotations.
Ref: Chernobyl children International at: http://www.chernobyl-international.com/index.aspx
Edward Oliver Gonzalez (gonzedo)