4/08/2011

April 8, Friday

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The second month after the shock starts !


four weeks later -
nothing can erase
these memories




. Remember March 11, 2011, 14:46  
 

spring rain -
thinking radioactivity
with each drop 


We have some rain since early morning, it should be a long-awaited gentle soothing spring rain (harusame), but thinking of Tohoku, it might also bring radioactivity down to earth and into the rivers.
South-Korea closed all schools and kindergardens yesterday because of fear of radioactive rain. I wonder what will go on in Japan today.

. my radioactive tears .

. . . . .

Urayasu still dealing with liquefaction
Streets, water lines and sewers far from back to prequake levels
The images we saw on TV are quite scary!

. . . . and this

Be objective, not sensationalist,
foreign media told by Foreign Ministry

. Japan Times, April 8 .  

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JAPAN DISASTER-RELIEF DONATIONS



Please help by making a donation, no matter how small.
. Mark Schumacher

Mark is my Daruma friend from Kamakura.

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Gabi reports:

It is now four weeks since the great earthquake, tsunami and reactor crises.


Levels are still falling :
. Daily Radiation Levels .  

. . . . .


And just as a reminder, another strong quake of M 7.4 hit Tohoku in the night around midnight. A tsunami warning was issued but no tsunami came. Damage was done to the reactors at Onagawa and others, see below NHK reports.
The quake was felt all the way down to us here in Okayama
震度1 : 岡山県 岡山県北部 真庭市
. Source:  typhoon.yahoo.co.jp/weather

With the power blackouts in most parts in Tohoku after the quake, the TV reporting looks like a re-run of march 11. Stores are closed, traffic lights not working, the school ground with a huge gap in the earth, no trains running, part of the highway closed ...

. . . . . at 12:00

At least 3 people are dead and more than 120 injured by the quake. Blackouts in many parts of Tohoku continue with all the disadvantages. Some homes burned down.
Some regions which just got back running tap water are now out of it again, because of the power failures in the region.
At least 3 have died of the aftershock last night, more than 120 are wounded.


and as I watch TV, another earthquake M 4.8 rattled the region, with its epicenter off Ibaraki coast.

. . . . .



キリンビール 仙台工場
The Kirin Beer brewery in Sendai got hit on March 11 too, and there are no estimates as to when it will be repaired.

. . . . .

And now rumours about deliberate nuclear warfare ... whow, see the comment about Leuren Moret below.
. sense or nonsense ?


. . . . .

Many of the Chinese "students" have left Tohoku. Now some farmers can not keep up their business, for example strawberry hot houses are deserted, because the Japanese family can not manage them without the help of some cheap labour.


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Bulletins from NHK Online

source : www3.nhk.or.jp

Friday, April 08, 2011 01:30
Onagawa nuclear plant loses part of outside power
Japan's nuclear agency says the quake on Thursday night disabled 2 out of the 3 outside power lines used at the Onagawa nuclear power plant in Miyagi Prefecture.
The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency says the plant has been using outside power lines to cool its nuclear fuel rods since the March 11th quake. The agency says after Thursday's quake, the plant is using only one remaining power line.
The agency says there is no change in radiation levels around the plant as of just after midnight Thursday. The agency is trying to confirm the current status at the plant.
.
TEPCO: No trouble reported from aftershock
Tokyo Electric Power Company says there are no additional problems with the facilities at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi and Daini nuclear power plants due to the recent aftershock.
The company says all the workers at the two plants have been evacuated to safe ground, and that there are no reports of injuries. It says electric power supply has not been cut off at the plants.
TEPCO added that no injuries have been reported.


Friday, April 08, 2011 06:10
Powerful quake strikes northeastern Japan

A magnitude 7.4 quake occurred off the Miyagi coast, northeastern Japan late Thursday night.
The Meteorological Agency says the quake registered 6-plus on the Japanese seismic scale of 0 to 7 in Sendai and another place in Miyagi prefecture. It says an intensity of 6-minus was registered in wide areas of Miyagi and Iwate prefectures, and that the quake was felt in many regions across Japan.
The agency estimates the focus of the quake was 40 kilometers below ground.
The agency issued a tsunami warning for coastal areas in Miyagi Prefecture, and tsunami evacuation advisories for Japan's northeastern seaboard from Aomori to Ibaraki prefectures. The warning and advisories were lifted about 80 minutes after the quake.
It was the largest aftershock since the March 11th quake, which registered 7-minus on the Japanese seismic scale.
The Meteorological Agency warned of possible strong aftershocks after last month's massive tremor.
More than 80 people were injured in Thursday's temblor, and fire and a gas leaks have been reported. Electricity delivery has been interrupted in Sendai.
.
Aftershock puts nuclear plants on emergency power
Japan's nuclear agency says the quake that struck northeastern Japan on Thursday, disabled all but one outside power supply line at the Onagawa nuclear power plant in Miyagi Prefecture.
The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency says 2 of the 3 power lines became unavailable and the plant is using the only remaining line to cool its nuclear reactors.
It says the cooling systems of 3 spent fuel pools were disabled at one point, but had all been restored.
The agency reports no abnormal radiation readings at the plant.
At the Fukushima Daiichi and Daini nuclear power plants, instrument readings and radiation monitors showed no changes following the quake.
At the Higashidori nuclear power plant in Aomori Prefecture, the quake shut down all outside power lines, prompting the plant to switch on emergency diesel power generators.
The plant had shut down its reactors and was undergoing an inspection at the time of the quake.
No serious effects were reported with the cooling systems of storage pools for spent fuel rods.
A nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Rokkasho, Aomori Prefecture, also lost all outside power and is operating on emergency diesel generators at the moment.
No irregularities have also been reported at the Tokai Daini nuclear power plant in Ibaraki Prefecture.
All these nuclear power plants had suspended power generating operations at their reactors after the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
.
The World Trade Organization WTO predicts that the March 11th earthquake will bring down Japan's exports by up to 1.6 percent this year.


Friday, April 08, 2011 08:00
TEPCO to inspect nuke plant after quake

The Tokyo Electric Power Company plans to resume operations to tackle safety issues at its crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant following a powerful quake on Thursday night.
The utility company says an examination immediately after the latest quake showed no ill effects on the facilities and the operation to inject water into the Number 1, 2 and 3 reactors. Radiation monitors at the plant showed no change in readings.
On Friday morning, TEPCO will inspect the facility in detail and determine whether highly contaminated water has started to leak into the ocean again from a pit near the Number 2 reactor.
The company plans to finish discharging the last 300 tons of relatively lightly contaminated water from a waste storage facility into the ocean on Friday. About 7,700 tons of the water containing low-level radioactive substances had been discharged by Thursday.
Once the storage facility is empty, the company will pump into it highly contaminated water which flooded the turbine building of the Number 2 reactor.
TEPCO also plans to finish by Saturday an operation to dump 1,500 tons of relatively-low contaminated water from drainage pits at the Number 5 and 6 reactors.
The company is continuing to inject nitrogen gas into the Number 1 reactor to prevent a hydrogen explosion. It says Thursday's quake did not affect the work.
Fuel rods inside the reactor are nearly half exposed after a loss of cooling water.


Friday, April 08, 2011 11:24
No. 1 reactor lost cooling function on March 11

Unreleased data obtained by NHK suggest that the failure to maintain the cooling functions of the No. 1 reactor at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant possibly triggered a hydrogen explosion at an early stage.
The data show that the water level inside the No. 1 reactor dropped to 45 centimeters above the fuel rods, or about one-tenth the normal level, nearly 7 hours after the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. The fuel rods become exposed 11 hours later.
Water levels in the No. 2 and No. 3 reactors were kept at around 4 meters through the use of emergency generators despite the power outages. It was a day and a half to 3 days before their fuel rods were exposed.
University of Tokyo Professor Naoto Sekimura says the loss of cooling functions at the No.1 reactor and the subsequent exposure of the fuel rods may have caused the hydrogen explosion as early as the next day.
The plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, has so far only disclosed data from the day after the quake.


Friday, April 08, 2011 11:59
Thursday's quake damages Onagawa nuclear plant

Tohoku Electric Power Company says Thursday night's strong earthquake caused water to overflow from spent fuel storage pools at one of its nuclear power plants.
The power company reported on Friday that water had spilled onto the floor at all 3 reactors at the Onagawa nuclear power plant in Miyagi Prefecture. The amount of water spilled was 3.8 liters at the most.
The utility firm also found water leaks at 5 locations in the plant, including inside buildings housing the reactors.
The company added that blowout panels--devices designed to control pressure inside the buildings--were damaged at the turbine building of the Number 3 reactor.
The newly reported problems add to the downing of 3 of 4 external power lines at the Onagawa plant. The plant is maintaining its cooling capabilities with the remaining power line.
Tohoku Electric Power Company is continuing its efforts to determine the extent of the damage caused by the latest quake. But it says no change has yet been seen in radiation levels around the plant.


Friday, April 08, 2011 14:01
Aftershock batters nuclear plants

Nuclear power plants and related facilities in the coastal areas of northeastern Japan were forced to rely on emergency power after their electricity was cut off in Thursday night's quake.
Operations have been suspended at all nuclear power plants from Aomori to Ibaraki prefectures since the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. But electricity is still crucial to keep their cooling systems operating.
Japan's nuclear agency says all external power lines at Higashidori nuclear power plant in Aomori Prefecture were knocked out in Thursday's quake. The plant switched to emergency diesel power generators for some hours, but power was later restored.
The quake shut down 3 of the 4 external power lines at Onagawa nuclear power plant in Miyagi Prefecture. It is still operating on the one remaining power line.
The Onagawa plant also suffered water leaks at 8 locations, including water that spilled from spent fuel storage pools at each of its 3 reactors. A device to control pressure inside a turbine building was also damaged.
In addition, the quake disabled all external power lines at a nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Aomori Prefecture. The cooling systems here are still running on emergency diesel power.


Friday, April 08, 2011 14:28
Aftershock aftermath

The magnitude 7.4 earthquake that struck off the Pacific coast of northeastern Japan on Thursday has left more than 2.6 million homes and offices without power as of noon, Friday.
The quake registered 6-plus on the Japanese seismic scale of 0 to 7 in Sendai and at another spot in Miyagi prefecture. It registered an intensity of 6-minus in wide areas of Miyagi and Iwate prefectures, and was felt in regions across Japan.
The Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning for the coastal areas of Miyagi Prefecture, and tsunami evacuation advisories for Japan's northeastern seaboard from Aomori to Ibaraki prefectures. The alerts were lifted about 80 minutes after the quake.
It was one of the largest aftershocks since the March 11th quake, which registered 7 on the Japanese seismic scale.
The Fire and Disaster Management Agency says that in Obanazawa City, Yamagata Prefecture, a 63-year-old woman was found dead at her home on Friday. Fire officials suspect that her oxygen breathing apparatus stopped working when the electricity failed.
In Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, 2 men, aged 79 and 85, died at a hospital. Fire officials say the quake
may have brought on heart attacks. 132 others were injured.


Friday, April 08, 2011 12:42
Quake causes cancellation of job offers

A survey by Japan's labor ministry shows at least 173 new graduates have had their job offers cancelled in the wake of the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
The ministry looked at reports filed with labor bureaus across the nation in a bid to gauge the impact of the disaster on employment.
As of Wednesday, at least 39 firms had cancelled job offers for a total of 173 new graduates from universities, high schools and vocational colleges, citing the disaster.
The number of cancellations is up 50 from March 31st.
High-school graduates account for 110 of them.
By prefecture, Tokyo tops the list with 71 cancellations, followed by the 3 most severely stricken prefectures--Iwate at 47, Miyagi at 20 and Fukushima at 8.
The ministry also says 81 firms postponed the start of employment or told new hires to stay home until further notice. The number of new graduates affected by these moves totaled 1,051, up 358 from the end of March.


Friday, April 08, 2011 12:57
Government drafts power-saving plan

A government task force has outlined a plan to slash electricity usage this summer, calling on households and businesses to conserve power in a bid to avoid rolling blackouts.
The plan asks households to cut electricity use by 15 to 20 percent through such steps as setting air conditioners at higher temperatures and unplugging appliances when not in use.
Small businesses are asked to cut power use by 20 percent, and large-lot users like factories are asked to use 25 percent less electricity.
The task force encourages factories to shift production to slower hours in the day. It says legal limitations on power usage are also on the table.
The government will flesh out the plan and announce detailed power conservation measures by the end of April.


Friday, April 08, 2011 16:14
Fewer foreign students at Tokyo Japanese school

A Japanese language school in Tokyo says about 15 percent of its foreign students have shown up for the new school year that started this month.
Only 20 foreign students attended the entrance ceremony of Tokyo Central Japanese Language School in Shibuya Ward on Friday.
The school says 130 students from more than 50 countries are enrolled for the new school year, but many decided not to come after a series of accidents at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant following the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
The entrance ceremony had more school staff than students.
An American student said the nuclear emergency is scary, but Tokyo is believed to be safe.
A Taiwanese student said she calls home everyday because her parents are worried, but she believes Tokyo is safe.
Principal Yoshihiro Shirai said the school can eliminate the students' concerns by starting its programs as scheduled.


Friday, April 08, 2011 16:14
Aftershock knocks out seismic data transmitters
The Meteorological Agency says seismometers in northeastern Japan stopped transmitting data after Thursday's magnitude-7.4 earthquake, apparently due to a power outage triggered by the jolt.
The agency said that as of 10 AM Friday, it had confirmed lack of data transmission from 14 seismometers in locations including Ishinomaki City in Miyagi Prefecture and Tanohata Village in Iwate Prefecture.
Another 4 seismometers had already been out of order since the March 11th quake and tsunami. The total of 18 malfunctioning seismometers accounts for 20 percent of all seismometers set up in northeastern Japan.
The agency also said data transmissions from 12 of 26 seismometers used for measuring quake magnitudes and issuing quake warnings have also stopped.
Senior agency official Osamu Kamigaichi told reporters that the lack of seismic data poses no problem for issuing tsunami warnings, but will affect the accuracy of quake warnings.
Kamigaichi said data transmission from most seismometers will likely be recovered after electricity is restored. But he added that the agency will prepare more emergency batteries in case of blackouts.
He also advised residents in quake-hit areas to remain cautious due to the possibility of more strong aftershocks.


Friday, April 08, 2011 19:39
TEPCO: Aftershock did not affect Fukushima efforts

The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in northeastern Japan says the strong earthquake on Thursday night has not hampered the ongoing work to restore reactor cooling systems at the plant.
Tokyo Electric Power Company evacuated all staff from the plant after an intensity 5-minus on the Japanese scale of 0 to 7 was registered in Futaba Town, where the plant is located, and a tsunami evacuation advisory was issued.
TEPCO says no new irregularities have been detected in radiation readings or other indicators, except for the surface temperature of the No. 1 reactor.
Before the quake, that reading stood at 223 degrees Celsius at 7 PM on Thursday. Just after the tremor, it rose to about 260 degrees at midnight -- up nearly 40 degrees -- but fell back to 246 degrees at 1 PM on Friday.
The government's nuclear safety agency says the sudden rise in temperature cannot be explained at the moment, but that it will continue close monitoring.
TEPCO continued operations to pump water into No.1, No. 2 and No. 3 reactors, as well as work to inject nitrogen into the containment vessel of the No. 1 reactor to prevent a possible hydrogen explosion.
The company says the pressure inside the vessel rose by 0.35 compared to the reading before the nitrogen injection, suggesting the work is going as planned.
TEPCO also says there have been no fresh leaks of highly contaminated water into the sea from a pit near the No. 2 reactor. Leakage from the concrete pit stopped on Wednesday after workers injected a hardening agent beneath it.
The operator also continued discharging water contaminated with relatively lower-level radiation into the sea from a storage facility.
Some 7,400 of the 8,500 tons of contaminated water had been released by Thursday.
The work is designed to make room for highly radioactive water that leaked into a concrete tunnel and the basement of the turbine building next to the No. 2 reactor.
Workers have completed drilling holes in the walls of turbine buildings connected to No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 reactors to install hoses. Highly radioactive water will be transferred through the hoses to the storage facility.
The workers also checked for any damage by the latest quake to the floors and walls of the facility.

Friday, April 08, 2011 19:39
Magnitude of Thursday quake revised downward

The Meteorological Agency has downgraded the magnitude of the powerful earthquake that struck northern Japan late Thursday night.
The agency on Friday revised the magnitude of the quake from 7.4 to 7.1.
The depth of the quake's focus was also revised from 40 kilometers below ground to 66 kilometers deep.
It occurred at 11:32 PM Thursday, causing strong tremors in areas already devastated by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
The latest tremor, believed to be an aftershock of the March quake, registered an intensity of 6-plus on the Japanese seismic scale of zero to 7 in some parts in Miyagi Prefecture.


Friday, April 08, 2011 20:51
China, Russia concern over contaminated water

China and Russia have expressed concern over Japan discharging water contaminated with relatively low-level radiation from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean.
China's foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei released a statement on Friday saying China wants Japan to take appropriate measures to protect the ocean environment based on international laws. He urged the Japanese government to provide China with comprehensive and accurate information in a timely manner.
In a statement issued on Thursday, Russia's foreign ministry expressed displeasure by pointing out that Japan informed Russia of its move to dump the contaminated water 2 days after it began the operation earlier this week.
The ministry urged Japan to provide concerned parties with complete information about the situation at the crippled nuclear power plant. It also expressed the hope that Japan will take measures to prevent further discharges of radioactive water into the ocean.
Russia's health authorities say that radioactive contamination has not been detected in the country at present. However, they say if the contamination spreads to a wider area and becomes more serious, it could restrict fishing in waters off its far-eastern coast.
On Tuesday, South Korea expressed similar concerns over the dumping and criticized the Japanese side for failing to notify it ahead of time.


Friday, April 08, 2011 21:57
Water radiation levels rise north of nuke plant

The operator of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says seawater radiation levels continue to rise in areas north of the plant.
Tokyo Electric Power Company says it detected on Thursday 110 becquerels of radioactive iodine-131 per cubic centimeter in seawater samples collected 30 meters from outlets in the northern part of the complex.
The figure is 2,800 times higher than the maximum allowed under government standards. Measurements at the same spot were 600 times the standard on Tuesday and 1,000 times on Wedneday.
In a series of surveys 15 kilometers from the coastline, a reading 9.3 times the national limit was detected north of the plant, off the coast of Minami-soma City.
The government's nuclear safety agency has instructed the Fukushima plant operator to review its monitoring activities, as the radioactive material is likely to be carried northward by ocean currents.
The agency stressed the need to monitor areas of high radiation concentration more closely to clarify possible contamination of the ocean.


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In Takasaki, Gunma prefecture, most famous for its Daruma dolls, all the stores around the station were closed on March 29, after the quake.
高崎市群馬県

The big Daruma for elections do not sell well any more, because people are in "salf-restraint mode".
But now they make new Daruma with "Ganbaro Nihon".




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Voices from around

. The Daily Reading List .  

. . . . .

quote   
SENDAI, Japan –
A strong aftershock ripped through northeastern Japan, killing two, injuring dozens and piling misery on a region still buried under the rubble of last month's devastating tsunami.

The quake late Thursday was the strongest tremor since the March 11 jumbo and did some damage, but it did not generate a tsunami and appeared to have spared the area's nuclear power plants. The Fukushima Dai-ichi complex — where workers have been frantically trying to cool overheated reactors since they lost cooling systems last month — reported no new abnormalities. Other facilities retained a connection to the grid or switched to diesel generators after the 7.1-magnitude quake knocked out power to much of the area.

Many people in the area have lived without water and electricity for nearly a month, and the latest tremor sunk more homes into blackness: In total, around 3.6 million households — about 60 percent of residents in the area — were dark Friday, said Souta Nozu, a spokesman for Tohoku Electric Power Co., which serves northern Japan.

Five conventional plants in the area were out, and it was not clear when power would be restored, he said.

The temblor's epicenter was in about the same location as the original 9.0-magnitude tremor, off the eastern coast and about 40 miles (65 kilometers) from Sendai...

"Something has changed," she said.
"The world feels strange now.
Even the way the clouds move isn't right."



source : news.yahoo.com



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Haiga by Alex Serban, Romania


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a bird tends
a broken wing ...
Fukushima evening


young leaves ...
the toxic air
in Fukushima


Tohoku ...
the moon upside down
for a few minutes


Ella Wagemakers, Holland

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Tohoku (to Dr. Gabi Greve)

in darkness …
the earth folding
within itself

suddenly the stars
the only light

scrambling
people run for cover ...
winter lingers

the chill of death
looms

a few more
missing in the night …
moon shadows

can you hear
the birds singing?

morning haze –
cherry blossoms in the midst
of spiraling fear  


Don Baird, California

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8 comments:

  1. Anonymous4/08/2011

    I am distressed to hear you had such a powerful aftershock:( Things are already shocking enough. I hope you are well Gabi san. I think of Japan and the chaos there and I pray for all of you.
    L.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Another nuke station has issues with external power supply. let's hope this will not lead to another disaster.
    nat

    ReplyDelete
  3. As Malaysia's New Straits Times points out,
    "In the face of great catastrophe, Japan is no less of an inspiration to the world.
    The Japanese people have shown that man can conquer his basic survival instinct for the greater good of society. The Japanese people have displayed the fortitude, the composure, the dignity and the generosity that have so defined their culture.
    Although there were more than 500,000 evacuees, there was no rushing, no rioting and no clamoring for food, water and fuel. The calmness of those waiting in kilometer-long lines to receive food, water and fuel defied the temper and fury of the quake that shook the ground. Their warmth toward each other defied the freezing weather they had to endure."

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anonymous4/08/2011

    The Japan Meteorological Agency said the quake was a magnitude 7.4. The U.S. Geological Survey said it was 7.1. The USGS also said Thursday's quake could be considered an aftershock, making it the biggest one since the March 11 quake.

    The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said based on all available data, "a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami is not expected and there is not a tsunami threat to Hawaii."

    http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/04/07/japan.quake/index.html

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous4/08/2011

    Atlanta (CNN) --
    Two of the world's largest concrete pumps will depart the United States later this week as part of the effort to resolve the crisis at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, officials said.

    Each pump weighs 190,000 pounds and has a boom reach of over 227 feet, and can pump water and concrete at massive rates. They will be loaded aboard enormous Russian cargo jets Friday.

    The pumps' manufacturer, Putzmeister, said in a release the devices are normally used to pour concrete for bridges and high-rise construction projects, but can offer pinpoint accuracy "to directly target hotspots within the reactors" and help with cooling.

    http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/04/07/japan.concrete.pumps/index.html

    ReplyDelete
  6. Anonymous4/08/2011

    (ExopoliticsTV) –
    Independent scientist Leuren Moret, whose 2004 landmark article in the Japan Times unmasked lies and distortions by government and company officials that led to the construction of nuclear power plants in seismically dangerous areas, has declared in an exclusive 65-minute video interview with Alfred Lambremont Webre that the “Japan earthquake and “accidents” at the Fukushima’s 6 nuclear power plant units starting March 11, 2011 are in fact deliberate acts of tectonic nuclear warfare, carried out against the populations ecology of Japan and the nations of the Northern Hemisphere, including the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

    whow ...
    http://dprogram.net/2011/03/23/scientist-leuren-moret-japan-earthquake-and-nuclear-accident-are-tectonic-nuclear-warfare/

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous4/08/2011

    oh, my - my heart and prayers r with u, gabi - the haiku - superb -
    i am listening to the news now and reading ur updates
    MM

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous4/20/2011

    Life is without meaning.
    You bring the meaning to it.
    The meaning of life is
    Whatever you ascribe it to be.
    Being alive is the meaning.

    Joseph Campbell

    ReplyDelete