Thursday, March 17, 2011

Japanese TV on German TV

While most of the attention on German television has shifted away from the effects of the earthquake and tsunami towards the nuclear problem, a German news channel (ZDFinfo) is broadcasting live Japanese television with German interpreters, and the coverage is once again quite different. The Japanese are focusing on hospitals with intermittent electricity (people are dying because their life-support systems and treatment are unstable), the lack of blankets and food for the countless people who are homeless, and similar issues. They do mention the nuclear disaster, but the footage is from shelters, clinics, etc.

Seeing Japanese television helps put into perspective the claims on international TV that the Japanese are playing down the nuclear danger. I don't think they are playing down anything. These folks need help.

Although we are flooded with information, it is surprising to see how hard it is to get a good idea of what area was actually devastated by the tsunami. If anyone has any information about square kilometers, please let me know. The maps I find about the area affected by the tsunami primarily concern wave propagation across the Pacific.

The maps about the landmass in Japan vary greatly, from this map, which shows a small strip of the coast, to this one at the New York Times, which indicates a much lager area of "heavy shaking" with pictures showing tsunami damage a long way down the coast. If anyone knows of any more specific maps, please comment below.

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