Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mainichi: "Ex-PM Kan apologizes for not preventing Fukushima disaster"

http://mainichi.jp/english/english/newsselect/news/20120529p2a00m0na021000c.html

MAJIA HERE: It is hard to understand the subtexts of this important story as an outsider. I've excerpted a few passages I read as important:

[excerpted ] In reference to the government's crisis management system against a nuclear accident, Kan said, "The Act on Special Measures Concerning Nuclear Emergency Preparedness was not responsive to a severe accident. The (government's) assumption of (nuclear) accidents was insufficient." . . .

. . .With regards to criticism that Kan overstepped his bounds as prime minister by meddling in the response to the nuclear disaster in detail, to the extent some described it as "excessive intervention," the former premier sought understanding for having taken such supra-legal responses as setting up a joint task force of the government and Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) -- the operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant -- in responding to the disaster.

"The Act on Special Measures Concerning Nuclear Emergency Preparedness presupposes that an earthquake and a nuclear accident would take place separately. Because of such an extremely insufficient assumption, I had no choice but to meddle in and do various things. I don't think that's the way a prime minister should act," Kan told the NAIIC.

[end excerpt]

Again, I don't know what to make of this story but find it very strange that Kan is being criticized for getting involved in the management of the accident given its scale and and given that he was PM.

The internal politics implicit, but not clear to me, must be poisonous.

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