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05 August 2012

1979 Film "The China Syndrome" turns out to "The Japan Syndrome"

Jane Fonda played as ambitious journalist who happened to witness a very serious nuclear accident, that revealed how ridiculous nuclear industry functioned seeking profit in priority to safety.

When it was first shown in public, Three Mile Island accident occurred. The film seemed to be a preview of that accident. Since then, there was no new nuclear power plant constructed in the US except military purpose.

Now the same type and even much more severe accident occurred last year in Japan, Fukushima accident. The China Syndrome-like phenomenon occurred. Nuclear fuels may have melted down to the ground and theoretically went to the opposite side of the earth. No one yet knows how serious the damage was.   

I actually watched the film several years ago on TV. At that time it was just suspense action film to me. Now I watched the film on DVD I bought. It was totally different story to me. It was no longer fiction. All the words and events occurred in the film were too much familiar to me, and other ordinary Japanese. I fully understand why water level in a reactor is important in terms of managing nuclear energy.

I also learned "No Nukes" movement existed even before Fukushima, Chernobyl and TMI.

It was very much late 1970's style film. Anti-big power type of message was in as anti-Vietnam war activist played main role and detailed and obvious description of how greedy the corporations are. Late 1970's was post-Vietnam war era, which people have become suspicous of authorities.

In fact we have to, we always had to. In reality everyone had been too much reliant on authorities, believing what they say is true.

Now we have changed such attitude since Fukushima. Less people believe what politicians, scientists say. People take actions gathering near the parliament building and prime minister's office, demanding direct voting on nuclear energy policy.

I hope this movement would be called "The Japan Syndrome."  

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