Monday, November 12, 2012

10-Day "Genki" (Cheer and Vitality) Festival in One of the Most Contaminated Districts in Fukushima City

It's in the realm of the surreal.

Hot-blooded men! Come to Fukushima!

From December 1st to 10th, in Onami District in Fukushima City! Real deal!

What's the "Festival" for? Decontaminating one of the most contaminated districts in Fukushima City with the district residents for 10 days, according to the organizer's website for the "Festival".

Where is Onami District? It is where the rice containing 1,270 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium was found last year. It's the same district that well-meaning volunteers from all over Japan descended in October last year to "decontaminate". Unlike districts in the neighboring Date City, none of the districts in Fukushima

Here's part of the organizer's message about radiation and radiation exposure from the decontamination in Oonami District:

(emphasis is mine)


We will arrange for the protective clothing for all participants. You are free to wear it, but use your own judgment if you wear it, and understand fully that by wearing the protective clothing and doing the decontamination you may cause fear and intimidation among the local residents. Please don't forget the residents of Onami District live there, in the areas designated for decontamination, without any protective clothing.


...Also, just to remind you, injuries and accidents, sicknesses after the work, radiation damages, and other problems are all your responsibility. Please apply, with full understanding of this fact.

Bad-ass looking, long-haired, broad-shouldered real "men" like the manga illustration above will not need any protection, will they? (Oh he has dirty-blond hair, on top of that.)

The caution about protective clothing causing fear among the locals is what the current chairman of Japan's Nuclear Regulatory Commission Shunichi Tanaka told the decon volunteers last year in Date City, Fukushima, where he was one of the radiation experts advising the city.

The organizer, On the Road Fukushima, wants 1,000 volunteers for 10 days (100 volunteers per day), at their own risk, to go to Onami District and impart cheer and vitality to the suffering residents.


Anonymous said...

Now here's a job I would trust Hosono to do.

Prepare to lead Hosono! Go to Oonami!

Centipede said...

In all honesty, the flimsy "protective clothing" they have on hand does little to reduce the exposure of people doing cleanup. Gamma rays from cesium and other isotopes will fly right through the suits with essentially no reduction in strength. They will help possibly to stop beta particles, tho... so there is that. In an area reading 1+ uSv/hr you probably aren't getting a huge dose from the beta particles, tho. I would want to protect my eyes, of course, and the main thing would be to wear some kind of mask to keep you from inhaling dust.

Anonymous said...

Wow the propaganda is relentless in Japan , there was the campaign for eating east japan food and fukushima peaches being fed to kids , the road race in a fallout zone and now this crap... all being funded by taxpayers money i guess.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Centipede, Mr. Tanaka in Date City was telling the volunteers to think twice about putting on the masks, lest they scare the locals.

Anonymous said...

The anime character reminds me of a trouble making underling of some biker crime boss carrying a circle of strife flag. Ten days of "undercover" public decontamination and good cheer sounds like fun on a bun. "Hey, good for you I'm only visiting enjoy your life when I leave. BTW, where do you want me to put all the perfectly safe stuff I collected"?

As Japanese festivals go this is pretty lame I'd rather attend the Onbashira Matsuri or the Kanamara Matsuri. The "Let's quietly clean up someone else's mess at your own risk" festival pales in comparison. Maybe they'll give everybody that attends free rice. This festival should be mandatory for all the nuclear supporter in Japan and it should include all effected regions.

Anonymous said...


doitujin said...

"by wearing the protective clothing (...)you may cause fear"
+ "radiation damages, and other problems are all your responsibility"
= WTF???!?

inspiring confidence, really..............
and as if their "protective" clothing was worth more than some imaginable Don Kihote nuke worker cosplay anyway...

also great how they use a popular CROWS/WORST manga yankii/bousouzoku/furyou (gangster/biker gang member/delinquent) character as advertisement mascot... a school dropout teen! (looked him up here:
is this meant as inspiration and metaphor for some young rebels' kamikaze mentality?
how sick does it get.............

Darth3/11 said...

As if locals are not scared enough, already. What a fatuous campaign. When is real assistance going to go to those affected local people? Never? What a message, that basically TEPCO and the government is more than happy to score political points and avoid any responsibility. Truly, the victims seem left on their own. This is the real cost of nuclear power. Nuts.

Anonymous said...

Half the world fear-mongers about lies and bullshit, and the other half makes up bullshit lies to run away from things we need to deal with.

Fail much.

Anonymous said...

Maybe they are trying to attract "gangster/biker gang member/delinquents" so they'll get sick and die. That's a win, win for the public the criminal element put in some community service then hopefully they get sick and die wallowing in hospital bills.

Anonymous said...

Let me get this sraight. The local residents dont want volunteers to protect themselves whilst doing decontamination cleanup because it reminds them of the truth of their hometown being contaminted??
Why doesn't someone go out there and educate the residents instead of them behaving like dumb ostriches? Talk about denial!
I'd call pretending everything is hunky dory akin to genocide.
Let me guess...when (if ever) this gets out, those responsible will have been at least transfered to another department in a typical responsibility-passing excercise, fuzzy, bimiyo, aimai sort of fog which nobody will ever get to the bottom of.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Anon at 9PM, they think that's "kikubari". Like the hot meals cooked by the volunteers for the evacuees who still live in an abandoned school building in Saitama, instead of the governments, NPOs, volunteers, citizens thinking about ways to relocate them to real homes.

Anonymous said...

I think that is taking kikubari a little too far. Kinda twisted interpretation, wouldn't you say? Maybe it can be used in a negative, as well as, a positive way...but I'd feel safer with a different definition.
For me Kikubari would be getting those people OUT of the contaminated areas-not pretending that it's safe to remain there (so as to save them (the government and the nuclear industry complex) money.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Anon above, you are talking about the real "kikubari" in a normal society which did exist in Japan. In the post-Fukushima Japan, since they cannot face the reality they focus on the trivial.

Anonymous said...

sort of "post-kikubari kikubari", then? So it is clear we do need a new word...collective denial and denial of reality in Japanese is...
...a pork cutlet prime minister and more scrumptous LDP policies getting us 'back to growth' (ie filling ones own pockets and getting further into the doodoo).

Damn shame and tragedy for the people of this country, they have to go down with the ship, kikubari 'n' all.

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