(IWAKI, Japan) – Tragedy beyond imagination is now unfolding in Japan
CNN’s Anderson Cooper reported on AC 360 Tuesday night that 50 Japanese workers suspended operations at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Northeastern Honshu.
At the risks of their lives, workers had been attempting to control fires and flood the site with seawater and boric acid in an effort to prevent a meltdown of the nuclear rods.
The reactors were shut down automatically after the earthquake, but the tsunami flooded the plant, knocking out emergency generators needed to cool and control the reactors.
Rising radiation levels appears to the reason for the evacuation of the skeleton workforce. There’s a desperate need to pump water into the reactors to prevent a meltdown.
This Fukushima site has six nuclear reactors. When the earthquake struck Units 1, 2 and 3 underwent an automatic shutdown. Units 4, 5, and 6 had already been shut down for periodic inspection.
There are 127 million people living in Japan. This includes an estimated 50,000 American service personnel and their dependents. If the worst case should occur and depending on the direction of the wind, the radiation fallout could affect millions of people.
Stars and Stripes news story of March 14th by Jon Rabiroff, “The U.S. 7th Fleet has moved its ships and aircraft away from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant in Japan after low levels of contamination were detected in the air and found on the crews of three helicopters returning from disaster relief missions near Sendai.”
Rabiroff reported that, “The contamination found on the 17 crewmembers was easily removed by washing with soap and water, and the ship and aircraft move is only temporary, according to a 7th Fleet release.”
“Nuclear reactors are not the same as coal/oil/gas electricity plants. Unlike conventional plants, they cannot be turned off. So while brave workers were tending to Units 1, 2 and 3 reactors, attempting against all odds to keep the reactor from overheating, the fuel pool at Unit 4 was left untended; without makeup water to cool them, the fuel rods overheated. Above 1800 of, an exothermic reaction, a fire, took place with the zirconium cladding around the uranium pellets. Zirconium burned, forming zirconium oxide and hydrogen gas, which then exploded and released radioactive cesium, a semi-volatile metal, to the atmosphere,“ according to a news story, “Doomsday Scenario at Fukushima” in the Huffington Post by Marvin Resnikoff on March 15th.
The U.S. military installations in Japan and their managing branches are:
• Camp Chitose, Chitose, Hokkaido
• Kadena Air Base, Okinawa Prefecture
• Kadena Ammunition Storage Area, Okinawa Prefecture
• Okuma Recreational Facility, Okinawa Prefecture
• Yaedake Communication Site, Okinawa Prefecture
• Misawa Air Base, Aomori Prefecture
• Yokota Air Base, Fussa, Tokyo
• Fuchu Communications Station, Fuchu, Tokyo
• Tama Service Annex, Inagi, Tokyo
• Yugi Communication Site, Hachioji, Tokyo
• Camp Asaka AFN Transmitter Site, Saitama Prefecture
• Tokorozawa Transmitter Site, Saitama Prefecture
• Owada Communication Site, Saitama Prefecture
• Fort Buckner, Okinawa Prefecture
• Army POL Depots, Okinawa Prefecture
• White Beach Area, Okinawa Prefecture
• Naha Port Facility, Okinawa Prefecture (return after relocation to the Urasoe Pier area)
• Torii Station, Okinawa Prefecture
• Tengan Pier, Okinawa Prefecture
• Camp Zama, Zama, Kanagawa
• Yokohama North Dock, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Sagami General Depot, Sagamihara, Kanagawa
• Sagamihara Housing Area, Sagamihara, Kanagawa
• Akizuki Ammunition Depot, Hiroshima Prefecture
• Hiro Ammunition Depot, Hiroshima Prefecture
• Kawakami Ammunition Depot, Hiroshima Prefecture
• Hardy Barracks, Minato, Tokyo
• Camp Smedley D. Butler, Okinawa Prefecture, Yamaguchi Prefectures. (Although these camps are dispersed throughout Okinawa and the rest of Japan they are all under the heading of Camp Smedley D. Butler):
o Camp McTureous, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Courtney, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Foster, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Kinser, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Hansen, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Schwab, Okinawa Prefecture
o Camp Gonsalves (Jungle Warfare Training Center), Okinawa Prefecture
o Kin Blue Beach Training Area, Okinawa Prefecture
o Kin Red Beach Training Area, Okinawa Prefecture
o NSGA Hanza
o Higashionna Ammunition Storage Point II
o Henoko Ordnance Ammunition Depot
• Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, Okinawa Prefecture (return after the MCAS Futenma relocates to Camp Schwab)
• Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni
• Camp Fuji, Shizuoka Prefecture
• Numazu Training Area, Shizuoka Prefecture
• Ie Jima Auxiliary Airfield, Okinawa Prefecture
• Tsuken Jima Training Area, Okinawa Prefecture
• Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Ayase, Kanagawa
• United States Fleet Activities Sasebo, Sasebo, Nagasaki
• United States Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Yokosuka, Kanagawa
• Urago Ammunition Depot, Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Tsurumi POL Depot, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Naval Housing Annex Negishi, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Naval Transmitter Station Totsuka, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Naval Support Facility Kamiseya, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Tomioka Storage Area, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture
• Naval Housing Annex Ikego, Zushi, Kanagawa
• White Beach Area, Okinawa Prefecture
• Camp Shields, Okinawa Prefecture
• Camp Lester, Okinawa Prefecture (return after the Naval Hospital relocates to Camp Foster)
• Awase Communication Station, Okinawa Prefecture
• New Sanno Hotel, Tokyo
• Tori Shima Range, Okinawa Prefecture
• Kume Jima Range, Okinawa Prefecture
• Kisarazu Auxiliary Landing Field, Kisarazu, Chiba Prefecture
• Camp Hansen (small portion in central area of Camp Hansen), Okinawa Prefecture
• Ukibaru Jima Range, Okinawa Prefecture
• Kadena Air Base (small areas outside of the base that are supported by Kadena—these areas are located on the southern portion of Okinawa), Okinawa Prefecture
• Jungle Warfare Training Center (formerly known as Northern Training Area—four thin elongated areas embedded and distributed evenly within JWTC), Okinawa Prefecture
Robert O’Dowd served in the 1st, 3rd and 4th Marine Aircraft Wings during 52 months of active duty in the 1960s. While at MCAS El Toro for two years, O’Dowd worked and slept in a Radium 226 contaminated work space in Hangar 296 in MWSG-37, the most industrialized and contaminated acreage on the base.
Robert is a two time cancer survivor and disabled veteran. Robert graduated from Temple University in 1973 with a bachelor’s of business administration, majoring in accounting, and worked with a number of federal agencies, including the EPA Office of Inspector General and the Defense Logistics Agency.
After retiring from the Department of Defense, he teamed up with Tim King of Salem-News.com to write about the environmental contamination at two Marine Corps bases (MCAS El Toro and MCB Camp Lejeune), the use of El Toro to ship weapons to the Contras and cocaine into the US on CIA proprietary aircraft, and the murder of Marine Colonel James E. Sabow and others who were a threat to blow the whistle on the illegal narcotrafficking activity. O’Dowd and King co-authored BETRAYAL: Toxic Exposure of U.S. Marines, Murder and Government Cover-Up. The book is available as a soft cover copy and eBook from Amazon.com. See: http://www.amazon.com/Betrayal-Exposure-Marines-Government-Cover-Up/dp/1502340003.