Tuesday, May 22, 2012

One Day After the Disaster Debris Standoff in Kitakyushu: 2 Protesters Arrested

for ostensibly "attacking the police", according to Yomiuri Shinbun (5/22/2012). If the past incidents are any indication, that would mean these two men got in physical contact with policemen, and that's called "attacking".

Yomiuri also reports 20 of the 22 trucks carrying 80 tonnes of disaster debris got inside, after 8-hour delays. The debris will be burned on May 23.

There were about 40 policemen against 30 or so protesters, according to Yomiuri.

By the way, Yasumi Iwakami's IWJ did the live netcast from early morning of May 22 for about 15 hours.

Portirland blog has the screen shots of the survey meter, with the highest radiation level at 0.612 microsievert/hour. The embedded video shows the measurement was done after the truck left the site. The survey meter went from 0.06 microsievert/hour or so to 0.612 microsievert/hour in about 2 and a half minutes.


Anonymous said...

Terrible. I wish i could move to a more hospitable planet and leave the idiots to destroy themselves.

Darth3/11 said...

Jeez, what did the two protesters do, shake the hands of the cops? I guess that means "attacking", eh? Extremely lame by the police. Need many more protesters!

Anonymous said...

Overall it was a credit to the Japanese people that there was no real violence at this event. I don't know how many Americans or Europeans would have had the restraint to not physically attack those trucks. Or how many police forces would have been so non-violent in breaking the protest line.

As much as you might disdain their government, you've got to admire the common Japanese people. I hope and pray that their leaders will come to their senses soon.

John said...

As someone who moved from Kanto to Kyushu to escape the secondary radiation coming out of waste processing plants, I cannot understand why Anonymous admires the common Japanese people or credits them that there was no violence. The fact is that the protestors achieved nothing. Now my home in Kyushu will be exposed to secondary source radiation. Don't praise non-violence when the result is the police and the state continue to get away with violence against us. All 30 should have come into contact with a police officer. And then 30 more should have been there to take there place. No result that does not stop the burning is a good result.

Stimmo said...

John: Then why weren't you there to protect your new home?

I did go to the protest yesterday. My wife and I arrived about 530pm, apparently about 15 minutes after the first batch of trucks got through. We stayed until about 8pm, when the second batch got through. I definitely didn't see any protesters "attacking" police, through they were far from sedate. Many protesters were getting up in the policemen's faces, and several tried to block the road with their bodies or cars. There was lots of mild pushing and a couple times the cops forcibly moved people out of the way.

A while after we arrived, one guy parked his minvan across half the road. The cops were not happy about this and there was plenty of tension trying to get him to move. Then another guy parked his minivan across the other half of the road. It seemed like a pretty good strategy, but they removed their vehicles themselves after a little while. I'm not really sure why they did, though I imagine they were threatened with arrest or getting their vans towed.

The cops then started bringing in big police vans, which they parked end-to-end in the middle of the road, with the protesters on one side and enough space for the trucks to drive on the other side. Throughout this, the cops were using a kind of human chain to fence off the protesters on the "right" side of the road. There was some resistance by the protesters, but not much and it was mostly vocal.

After the vans had been lined up and the protesters were contained by the police line, the second batch of trucks came rumbling through. It was over in a few minutes. We left soon afterward, pulling out just ahead of the big police vans.

Apparently, there are still people there at the disposal plant, and another group is gathering in front of city hall. They were supposed to start burning at noon. It's 1205 now.

One more thing. When we arrived, the police were kind of blocking off the road that led to the disposal plant. We were told it was "dangerous" to enter the area and that there was a possibility of "traffic jams" and "accidents". They wanted us to turn around and leave. We pressed them and they admitted they had no right to block us, so we drove in and parked with no problem. I've heard that the area is now completely blocked, except for actual Kitakyushu residents. I'm not sure what, if any, legal basis this has.

I should say that the police acted professionally, in my opinion. I think it is completely wrong that the government should be shipping radioactive debris all over the country to burn it, and that spending huge sums on the incredible police presence I witnessed yesterday is totally unjustified. However, as individuals, the police acted with restraint and calm.

Anonymous said...

I'd prefer if they acted logically instead of professionally. Anyone with a brain would question the safety of radioactive materials and turn against an oppressive government forcing its widespread ingestion.

Anonymous said...

Japan is a total police state, locked down and oppressive... those protesters were batted away like flies... the heartless machine that is Japans status quo marches on and we are all gonna get poisoned for profit... sick

Anonymous said...

> I'd prefer if they acted logically instead of professionally.

Silly comment. When is the last time you saw police or military reflect on what they have been told to do?

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