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Radiation Spread in Japan. Maybe the world?

Posted by: pjeanty

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pjeanty

Japanese radiation leakage is continuing to be a threat to the globe. Global markets have been witnessing days of ups and downs with a up day being a day when assurances are being provided and down days being when suddenly some news on leakage gets through. Today, the news was of Iodine being present in Tokyo Tap water. City officials have said that the levels of iodine in tap water exceeded the recommended level for infants. Globally, fears ran through. 

Last week, an email warning of possible contamination by one person caused a huge scare in China. Consumers bought nearly 370,000 tons of salt across China on Thursday, followed by 220,000 tons on Friday and 82,000 tons on Saturday against an average consumption of 15,400 tons of salt per day. Some newspapers report that radiation in Russia is within normal while others say that radiation has reached Russia and the West Coast of USA. 

The New York Times carried a article which said that evidence from Chernobyl and other nuclear tests has shown that radiation can travel very far.  Cesium 137 was found in boar in Croatia and reindeer in Norway even 15 years after Chernobyl.  Cesium 137 which has been released from the Fukushima Daiichi plant is long lived and can easily travel through the food chain. A week after nuclear tests in china, iodine 131 was found in deer in Colorado. Also Japanese officials have admitted that the water that they used to douse the nuclear reactors have reached the ocean, causing the world to approach the issue with caution. In a worst case scenario projected by Rutgers University, radiation can reach Alaska fisheries in months. 

Observing all the above, it is clear that the aftereffects of Japan will linger for a long time.


Intolerance

Posted by: pjeanty

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pjeanty

In less than 90 days of the murder of its Punjab Province Governor, Pakistan has added another martyr to the cause of religious tolerance.  Like Salman Taseer, Shahbaz Bhatti, the minister for minorities was gunned down for speaking against the blasphemy law and supporting the cause of Asia Bibi, mother of five sentenced to death for blasphemy.

I absolutely don't get this.

Persecution of minorities under some pretext persists in Pakistan since its partition from India. For long it had been Hindus alone who bear the brunt of religious extremism. Now it is Christians who are facing retaliation against a power which is answerable neither to the army or to the government.

Is Pakistan's ill the rise of fundamentalist Islam or a largely confused population segment who despite the global outcry against the assassination, still march in support of the assassin?

A recent UN report stated that  youth forms 40% of the population and despite 58% literacy rate, are easily swayed by fundamentalist teachings.

The government has been trying to improve its economy so that people with steady income become less likely to move toward extremes.  Pakistan’s economy has been growing positively despite the internal strife. But is proactively protecting and insisting on justice for all, including minorities, part of its fundamental responsibility?

No major government official was present at the recent funeral. Does erosion of religious freedom mean there might be many more such martyrs subjected to the gun in the future if they open their mouth against the draconian laws of persecution against the minorities.

I absolutely don't get this.

Is it that hard to allow room for all and find a way to get along?
Intolerance is not just a "Pakistan" issue...