Psalm 46: 1-3
1 God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
3 though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

Japan’s 8.9 Sendai Earthquake of Friday March 11th is a terrible tragedy. One that continues to keep spewing out bad news. Earthquake, tsunami, nuclear reactor troubles. It seems that the Japan can never get a break. A true catastrophe for the entire planet. One would have to be inhuman to not feel anything for our fellow brothers and sisters. To not be moved by their stories of survival.

What amazes me the most is how calm the Japanese are. At least from what I’ve seen of survivors on the tube. The military helping out the homeless. The stranded standing in quiet lines waiting for rations and water. That is quite outstanding if you think about it. Perhaps in other countries, riots would occur, fights would break out, the elderly and women and children would be pushed aside as the strong break through to obtain what they can by using brute force alone. But I see none of that. Granted, I’m only allowed a keyhole view of what is happening on the ground as I wander from news site to news site on the net or when I manage to find the courage to turn on BBC World. The resiliency and resolve of Japan’s people is a lesson for us all.

What sickens me the most is when politicians use this disaster as a basis for making a statement against nuclear energy. There is a time and place for this discussion here in Finland but the time is not now. Let Japan mourn first. Have a heart. Finland currently hosts four nuclear reactors at two locations, a fifth is currently under contruction, and licenses have been granted to build a sixth and seventh. One day after the quake/tsunami, the Left Alliance “called for a re-evaluation of Finland’s nuclear energy policy in light of developments in Japan.” The last time I checked Finland was not sitting on an earthquake fault zone nor is it highly susceptible to tsunamis. As a first time voter in the upcoming Eduskunta parliamentary elections of April 17th, I can assure you that I will not be voting for the Left nor any other party that will use Japan’s tragedy as an excuse to gain some cheap press.

Another item that I found disturbing over the weekend is that on Saturday, iodine tablets have sold out at pharmacies across Finland. Perhaps this event has re-opened some old Chernobyl 1986 wounds, as some Finns found it necessary to act irrationally and stock up. If a huge amount of radiation were to be released by Japan’s reactors, the cloud would have to traverse the Pacific, North America, Atlantic and parts of Europe first before reaching Finland. Iodine tablets will offer minimal defense if the cloud were to be so devastating that you could not drink the water nor breathe the air. When people panic, it helps no one.

Needless to say, it has been a difficult weekend for the people of Earth. Mother Nature has yet again shown her reluctance to be merciful. Difficult times for all. We are all connected together in one way or another, therefore we must all help each other get through this. The scenes of destruction and devastation can easily turn one’s positive mood upside-down. At this moment, the most important thing we can do is to help Japan as much as we can and in any way we can. We can start by saying a few prayers for the victims, their families and everyone affected. Japan will survive and be stronger than before.

www.abc.net.au/news/events/japan-quake-2011/beforeafter.htm
www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12725646
www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12709850
www.yle.fi/uutiset/news/2011/03/japanese_disaster_reigniting_nuclear_safety_debate_2430641.html
www.yle.fi/uutiset/news/2011/03/finns_seek_radiation_protection_with_iodine_pills_2429257.html