yeah and meanwhile Libya's going back to Gaddafi
yeah and meanwhile Libya's going back to Gaddafi
I heard on the news that the rebels only have 1 stronghold left ugh
too much going on right now, bringing me down; hoping for the best outcome for both countries
^He looks like Mel Brooks! And Sherman Hensley.
Last 9.0 Northwest quake was in 1700 | kgw.com | Local News | Portland, Oregon
a pacific northwest 9.0 earthquake in 1700 created a tsunami that went all the way to Japan, very interesting
some more before and after pics from Japan
looked like beautiful neighborhoods to live in nice towns before
I'm absolutely disgusted with our worthless Westminster government. A highly skilled search and rescue team from Grangemouth here in Scotland were denied entry to Japan because of red tape from London. David Cameron and William Hague should be ashamed. I am appalled.
Source: Red tape row as rescuers are denied entry to Japan - Herald Scotland | News | World NewsRed tape row as rescuers are denied entry to Japan
17 Mar 2011
A SCOTTISH rescue team has accused British officials of hampering the Japanese aid effort with red tape after 14 disaster relief workers were forced back from the country because of delayed paperwork.
However, the 12 members of the International Rescue Corps (IRC), based in Grangemouth, arrived home in the UK last night only to find the Foreign Office had performed an about-turn and produced the letter that would have allowed them access to the area devastated by Friday’s earthquake and tsunami.
The rescue corps, which has worked at more than 30 other disasters worldwide – including the 1995 earthquake that killed 6000 people in Kobe – had apparently secured the permission of Japan’s London embassy before it deployed to the country earlier in the week.
Despite this, the team was told on arrival at Tokyo Airport that a new permit was required to travel to the stricken area, operations director Willie McMartin said. While the Japanese were happy to provide the permit, the British embassy refused to sign a letter validating the IRC’s status as a non-governmental body, ostensibly on the grounds that the UK would be accepting legal responsibility for them if it did so.
The team was stuck at Tokyo Airport for more than 30 hours while the wheels of bureaucracy rumbled on, but decided to leave in the early hours of Wednesday because it was unable to secure promises from the British embassy that a letter would be issued.
IRC members donated their supplies of food and medical aid to the local Salvation Army and boarded the flight home. Only yesterday morning did the embassy produce the required letter, but by this time the 12-hour flight had taken off, meaning it was too late for the rescue corps to do anything with the permission or even be told that they had it.
Mr McMartin said he was “disgusted” by the attitude of the UK Government, particularly the Foreign Office’s handling of the situation. He suggested the letter was issued with the knowledge that the team had taken off, and that this was done only to quieten the inevitable media backlash against the situation.
The Foreign Office admitted to “a misunderstanding”, but insisted the IRC were unprepared and lacked clearance for its operation.
Prime Minister David Cameron brought the rescue corps up at Westminster, responding to a question on the incident: “I can tell the House what happened: the official rescue team that was sent from the UK arrived in good time and have already started work. There was an extra, independent rescue team that didn’t have the correct documentation and so they did encounter some problems. We are doing everything we can to make sure that they can get access.”
Mr McMartin said it was “a non-starter” for the 12-strong team to go back, and that the treatment of his organisation, which is funded solely on donations, sat at odds with Mr Cameron’s ambitions for a “Big Society” of independent and charitable services.
“Why are they not supporting charities in this instance?” Mr McMartin asked, pointing out that the official UK rescue team relied on publicly funded emergency personnel. “That’s against everything the Big Society is supposedly there for. They’re taking groups from the fire service, and that’s a big cost, and they’re chartering aircraft to get them there … they’re using a system which is the exact opposite of what their [mission] statement is, where they want the third sector to take on more roles.”
The Foreign Office denied the mission had been held up by red tape.
Foreign Office minister Jeremy Browne said: “The British Government has the greatest respect for the work the IRC does in disasters around the world. The misunderstanding about their attempt to join the Japanese earthquake and tsunami response is therefore most unfortunate.
“British embassy staff made contact with the IRC team when they arrived in Tokyo. We sent a letter of support to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs early on the morning of March 16 at the request of the Japanese. Our staff followed this up with phone calls to the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. As is usual in international humanitarian responses, it is right that the Japanese Government remains in control of the situation and decides which search and rescue operations to support.”
He added: “Before the [official] Search and Rescue team left Britain for Japan they had permission of the Japanese Government to travel and the necessary support structures in place. On arrival in Japan, IRC did not have the necessary transport and translation support in place. The British embassy in Tokyo provided support to the IRC, but the final decision about what role they could play in the rescue effort was made by the Japanese authorities.”
The official UK team has so far found no survivors, but rescuers uncovered three bodies in the wreckage yesterday.
I smile because I have no idea what's going on
ETA- Just noticed this has been posted already in pets forum
Amid the terror of imminent possible nuclear disaster and the human death toll of the Japanese earthquake a loyal dog refuses to leave its best friend.
Japanese news reports say the two animals were caught in the tsunami and magnitude nine quake on Friday.
While one dog somehow survived unscathed, the other appeared to have been killed when the monster wave swept through the Arahama area in Sendai - only for rescuers to find he had miraculously survived the disaster.
Scroll down for video
Loyal to the end: A dog remains at the side of his wounded friend in the wake of the tsunami - miraculously, both survived
As this heartbreaking footage shows the brown and white coloured spaniel-cross refused to leave the side of his seemingly dead canine companion - even stopping rescuers from getting close.
But then as the crew filmed the scene, believing only one dog has survived, they suddenly noticed the head of the other dog move and rejoiced, shouting: 'Yes! Yes! He is alive.'
Luckily a combined effort by Japanese news channel reporters and rescuers has now meant the loyal dog and his friend have been rescued since the footage was shot earlier this week.
Warding off danger: The brown spaniel-cross tried to keep a news crew away as he guarded his injured friend
Faithful: Despite surviving a natural disaster, the dog showed no fear as he tried to protect his friend
An emotional English transcript has now been released of the moment the rescue began.
A reporter speaks to camera: 'We are in Arahama area. Looks like there is a dog. There is a dog. He looks tired and dirty. He must have been caught in the tsunami. He looks very dirty.
'He has a collar. He must be someone's pet. He has a silver collar. He is shaking. He seems very afraid.
'Oh, there is another dog. I wonder if he is dead.'
Another person off camera asks: 'Where?'
The reporter continues: 'Right there. There is another dog right next to the one sitting down. He is not moving. I wonder. I wonder if he is alright.'
Protector: After barking at reporters, the dog returns to his fellow canine's side
The voice off-camera says: 'The dog is protecting him,' with the reporter replying: 'Yes. He is protecting the dog. That is why he did not want us to approach them. He was trying to keep us at bay.
'I can't watch this. This is very difficult to watch. Oh. Look. He is moving. He is alive. I am so happy to see that he is alive.
'Yes! Yes! He is alive.
'He looks to be weakened. We need them to be rescued soon. We really want them rescued soon.
'Oh good. He's getting up. It is amazing how they survived the tremendous earthquake and tsunami. It's just amazing that they survived through this all.'
Miracle: The weaker dog begins to stir and his friend puts a comforting paw around him
Both dogs have now been rescued, according to a Facebook post by Kenn Sakurai, president of a dog and cat food firm which aids animal rescue operations.
'The one which came close to the camera is in the better condition,' he explained.
'The othere white, gray and black was weak. So it is in the vet clinic in Ibaraki Prefectre.The other dog is in the shelter of the same area.
'But please know that those two are just the tip of the iceberg. There are more and we need help.'
Read more: Japanese tsunami: Video shows dog protected by friend surviving | Mail Online
Japan Earthquake: U.S. Charities See Smaller Donations from Americans Than After Haiti and Other Disasters - ABC News
Two days after an earthquake ravaged Haiti last year, American citizens text-messaged more than $5 million in donations to the Red Cross disaster relief effort.
Five days after the quake, the agency had raised more than $92 million for the cause.
And ten days after the disaster in Haiti, Americans gave more than $57 million during a two-hour telethon hosted by George Clooney and MTV.
But a week after Japan was crippled by an earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis, there's no telethon on the horizon, and little sign Americans are giving as feverishly, or as generously, to international relief efforts as they have before.
"There has not been a telethon, which is driving me crazy," said Wayne Elsey, CEO of Soles4Souls, a charity he created following the 2004 South Asian tsunami. Soles4Souls works with celebrities to collect and distribute shoes to people displaced by natural disasters.
"I'm not sure if it's fatigue, or if people don't see the magnitude of the problem, or they have other projects they're working on," Elsey said, "but there needs to be a bigger emphasis on this."
The American Red Cross said it raised $47 million for the Japan earthquake and Pacific tsunami response through Wednesday afternoon, including more than $2.6 million in donations via text messages. The amount is roughly half what it raised in the same period following the Haiti quake.
While several other prominent U.S.-based aid groups, including Catholic Relief Services, International Rescue Committee, and World Vision also reported raising hundreds of thousands of dollars each in the past few days, some have decided not to raise money at all.
CARE USA, Oxfam America and Doctors Without Borders all opted not to directly fundraise for the Japanese relief effort, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
And among Hollywood stars, Sandra Bullock is the only one so far to publicly donate a significant sum of money to the relief effort, giving $1 million to the Red Cross.
"With Haiti there was a lot of guilt about how poor the people were and how much suffering they endured. But with Japan, it's a rich country, their GDP is similar to ours, and in many ways the needs of their people can be met by the Japanese government and the systems they have in place," said Daniel Borochoff, president of the American Institute of Philanthropy, a charity watchdog group.
"The point of charity is to address need. Japan is not making desperate pleas for aid, and charities aren't going to do rebuilding. That's going to be government and private insurance. So people need to balance this with the problems in the rest of the world, even in our own country which has been hit by the recession," he said.
Experts say Japan's greatest future needs may be akin to those endured by the U.S. after the 9/11 attacks, including need for psychological healing and infrastructure redevelopment, which don't often emerge until months and years after the immediate aftermath.
The American Red Cross, which made an initial $10 million contribution to the Japanese Red Cross Society, says it remains committed to playing a "critical humanitarian role and comforting the survivors."
"Every disaster is different and the level of media coverage, often a key variable in driving fundraising, varies widely," said Attie Poirier, an American Red Cross spokeswoman, of the disparity in contributions compared to other recent tragedies. "So it is extremely difficult to compare the level of donations we are now receiving for the Japan quake."
And while a star-studded telethon to raise funds for the Red Cross and other international charities may not yet be in the works, one could still be planned.
Organizers took 10 days to plan telethons following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and Haiti earthquake last year; 19 days to produce and air a telethon after the South Asian tsunami of 2004; and more than two months to organize a telethon to raise funds for relief efforts in the Gulf of Mexico following last summer's BP oil spill.
I don't think it has all been tallied yet. One news channel here raised $60,000 in one evening. Not sure it is all going to Red Cross either. I also think, like in New Zealand, there was hope of recovery & we all felt immediately there was something we could do. Japan, with 3 major disasters hitting one after the other was overwhelming. It was unchartered all the way around. We are frozen in fear for those poor people. It is the first thing everyone talks about when they meet. The sheer magnitude, the total horror of it all! I don't think this will be a problem once everyone processes it all and sees there is a lot of hope here and we can actually help.
I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West
at Mar 19, 8:25 AM EDT
Japan said radiation levels in spinach and milk from farms near its tsunami-crippled nuclear complex exceeded government safety limits, as emergency teams scrambled Saturday to restore power to the plant so it could cool dangerously overheated fuel.
The food was taken from farms as far as 65 miles (100 kilometers) from the stricken plants, suggesting a wide area of nuclear contamination.
While the radiation levels exceeded the limits allowed by the government, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano insisted the products "pose no immediate health risk."
Firefighters also pumped tons of water directly from the ocean into one of the most troubled areas of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex — the cooling pool for used fuel rods at the plant's Unit 3. The rods are at risk of burning up and sending radioactive material into the environment.
The news of contaminated food came as Japan continued to grapple with the overwhelming consequences of the cascade of disasters unleashed by a 9.0-magnitude earthquake on March 11. The quake spawned a tsunami that ravaged Japan's northeastern coast, killing more than 7,300 people and knocking out backup cooling systems at the nuclear plant, which has been leaking radiation.
Nearly 11,000 people are still missing.
The tainted milk was found 20 miles (30 kilometers) from the plant, a local official said. The spinach was collected from six farms between 60 miles (100 kilometers) and 75 miles (120 kilometers) to the south of the reactors.
Those areas are rich farm country known for melons, rice and peaches, so the contamination could affect food supplies for large parts of Japan.
More testing was being done on other foods, Edano said in Tokyo, and if tests show further contamination then food shipments from the area would be halted.
Officials said it was too early to know if the nuclear crisis caused the contamination, but Edano said air sampling done near the dairy showed higher radiation levels.
Iodine levels in the spinach exceeded safety limits by three to seven times, a food safety official said. Tests on the milk done Wednesday detected small amounts of iodine 131 and cesium 137, the latter being a longer lasting element and can cause more types of cancer. But only iodine was detected Thursday and Friday, a Health Ministry official said.
Officials from Edano on down tried to calm public jitters, saying the amounts detected were so small that people would have to consume unimaginable amounts to endanger their health.
Edano said someone drinking the tainted milk for one year would consume as much radiation as in a CT scan; for the spinach, it would be one-fifth of a CT scan. A CT scan is a compressed series of X-rays used for medical tests.
"Can you imagine eating one kilogram of spinach every day for one year?" State Secretary of Health Minister Yoko Komiyama said. One kilogram is a little over two pounds.
Meanwhile, just outside the bustling disaster response center in the city of Fukushima, 40 miles (60 kilometers) northwest of the plant, government nuclear specialist Kazuya Konno was able to take only a three-minute break for his first meeting since the quake with his wife, Junko, and their children.
"It's very nerve-racking. We really don't know what is going to become of our city," said Junko Konno, 35. "Like most other people, we have been staying indoors unless we have to go out."
She brought her husband a small backpack with a change of clothes and snacks. The girls — aged 4 and 6 and wearing pink surgical masks decorated with Mickey Mouse — gave their father hugs.
Low levels of radiation have been detected well beyond Tokyo, which is 140 miles (220 kilometers) south of the plant, but hazardous levels have been limited to the plant itself.
Nuclear reactors at the Fukushima plant began overheating and leaking radiation into the atmosphere in the days after the March 11 quake and the subsequent tsunami overwhelmed its cooling systems. The government admitted it was slow to respond to the nuclear troubles, which added another crisis on top of natural disasters, which officials believe killed more than 10,000 people and displaced more than 400,000 others.
There were signs of progress in bringing the overheating reactors and fuel storage pools under control.
A fire truck with a high-pressure cannon was parked outside the plant's Unit 3, about 300 meters (yards) from the Pacific coast, and began shooting a stream of water nonstop into the pool for seven straight hours, said Kenji Kawasaki, a spokesman for the nuclear safety agency.
A separate pumping vehicle will keep the fire truck's water tank refilled. Because of high radiation levels, firefighters will only go to the truck every three hours when it needs to be refueled. They expect to pump about 1,400 tons of water, nearly the capacity of the pool.
Edano said conditions at the reactors in units 1, 2 and 3 — all of which have been rocked by explosions in the past eight days — had "stabilized."
Holes were punched in the roofs of units 5 and 6 to vent buildups of hydrogen gas, and the temperature in Unit 5's fuel storage pool dropped after new water was pumped in, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said.
"We more or less do not expect to see anything worse than what we are seeing now," said Hidehiko Nishiyama of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency.
Although a replacement power line reached the complex Friday, workers had to methodically work through badly damaged and deeply complex electrical systems to make the final linkups without setting off a spark and potentially an explosion. Company officials hoped to be able to switch on the all the reactors' power on Sunday.
Even once the power is reconnected, it is not clear if the cooling systems will still work.
The storage pools need a constant source of cooling water. When removed from reactors, uranium rods are still very hot and must be cooled for months, possibly longer, to prevent them from heating up again and emitting radioactivity.
More workers were thrown into the effort — bringing the total at the complex to 500 — and the safety threshold for radiation exposure for them was raised two-and-a-half times so that they could keep working.
Officials insisted that would cause no health damage.
Nishiyama also said backup power systems at the plant had been improperly protected, leaving them vulnerable to the tsunami.
The failure of Fukushima's backup power systems, which were supposed to keep cooling systems going in the aftermath of the massive 9.0-magnitude earthquake, let uranium fuel overheat and were a "main cause" of the crisis, Nishiyama said.
"I cannot say whether it was a human error, but we should examine the case closely," he told reporters.
A spokesman for Tokyo Electric Power Co., which owns and runs the plants, said that while the generators themselves were not directly exposed to the waves, some electrical support equipment was outside. The complex was protected against tsunamis of up to 5 meters (16 feet), he said. Media reports say the tsunami was at least 6 meters (20 feet) high when it struck Fukushima.
Spokesman Motoyasu Tamaki also acknowledged that the complex was old, and might not have been as well-equipped as newer facilities.
People evacuated from around the plant, along with some emergency workers, have tested positive for radiation exposure. Three firefighters needed to be decontaminated with showers, while among the 18 plant workers who tested positive, one absorbed about one-tenth tenth of the amount that might induce radiation poisoning.
As Japan crossed the one-week mark since the cascade of disasters began, the government conceded Friday it was slow to respond and welcomed ever-growing help from the U.S. in hopes of preventing a complete meltdown.
The United States has loaned military firefighting trucks to the Japanese, and has conducted overflights of the reactor site, strapping sophisticated pods onto aircraft to measure radiation aloft. Two tests conducted Thursday gave readings that U.S. Deputy Energy Secretary Daniel B. Poneman said reinforced the U.S. recommendation that people stay 50 miles (80 kilometers) away from the Fukushima plant. Japan has ordered only a 12-mile (20-kilometer) evacuation zone around the plant.
The government on Friday raised the accident classification for the nuclear crisis, putting it on a par with the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania in 1979, and signifying that its consequences went beyond the local area.
This crisis has led to power shortages and factory closures, hurt global manufacturing and triggered a plunge in Japanese stock prices.
Police said more than 452,000 people made homeless by the quake and tsunami were staying in schools and other shelters, as supplies of fuel, medicine and other necessities ran short.
On Saturday evening, Japan was rattled by 6.1-magnitude aftershock, with an epicenter just south of the troubled nuclear plants. The temblor, centered 150 kilometers (90 miles) northeast of Tokyo, caused buildings in the capital to shake.
Yuasa reported from Tokyo, as did Associated Press writers Mari Yamaguchi, Elaine Kurtenbach, Tim Sullivan, and Jeff Donn.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Japan Cites Radiation in Milk, Produce
Good luck getting a cat to do anything let alone join in on your sexcapades. - Air Quotes
Just heard on the news that two people have been recovered from the rubble after 9 days, a grandmother and her grandson had been in their kitchen and survived on yoghurt while waiting for rescue. Apparently the grandson was able to wriggle up through the rubble to the roof of the house when they heard noises and flagged down some rescuers. They're suffering from exposure but apparently are doing well.
I smile because I have no idea what's going on
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