Author Topic: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud  (Read 2579 times)

Offline Alex Shrugged

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Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« on: January 20, 2014, 11:12:04 PM »
Jack addressed the worries over Fukishima and placed the threat of radioactive poisoning into perspective. I agree with him 100%. It then occurred to me that we have evidence of what actually happens when a person is directly exposed to radioactivity. The bombing of Nagasaki makes Fukishima look like a fart in a Texas tornado.

The following story is a digest of the facts and narrative from the book "The Rising Sun" by John Toland, Volume 2, 1970, pp. 989-1001. The author's wife is a Japanese-American and translated the primary sources he used to write many of these accounts. As much as possible I made this story my own but I cannot claim credit for it.


The Flight of Nobukazu Komatsu into the Mushroom Cloud.

The date is August 9, 1945.

It is hazy with smoke obscuring the ground as the B-29, Bock's Car, flies over it's primary target... Kokura, Japan, but the bombardier has orders to make a visual drop and he can't find his target through the haze. Fuel is becoming critical so Bock's Car abandons its primary target, and heads toward its secondary... Nagasaki.

Nagasaki, Japan is primarily a Christian city of 200,000 established by the Portuguese in 1571. Now it is in the crosshairs of Bock's Car carrying the second of two atomic bombs. This one is named "Fat Man" and has been armed since take off. Nagasaki appears on the radar at 11:00 AM, and bombardier Kermit Beahan shouts, "I've got it! I see the city!" At 11:01 AM the plane suddenly lurches upward. Fat Man is on his way.

There is a blue light and then... nothing.

Kazuko lifts herself back up. She is standing beside a crumbling wall, all that is left of Urakami prison. She turns back toward her home but it is gone. She finds her mother buried under some tiles and together they find her father, Mr. Tokai. His skin peels off his hands as if he is removing gloves.

High above, Bock's Car and The Great Artiste (the plane carrying the war correspondent) watch as a huge fireball lifts up into the sky. A mushroom cloud forms as death rains down upon anyone in the city who has survived to this point. Low on fuel, the two planes bingo to Okinawa.

A Japanese seaplane has heard the radio report of the bombing of Nagasaki. Cadet Nobukazu Komatsu wants to see if the same thing has happened at Nagasaki that happened to Hiroshima. In the back of the plane are his two comrades in arms, Chief Petty Officer Umeda and Cadet Tomikura. As Komatsu breaks through the clouds he sees the ominous mushroom cloud, but for him it is a thing of beauty. Flashing in multicolors as the sunlight filters through, he has an inspiration....

"Let's cut into the cloud!"

As he banks into the mushroom cloud he opens his window and sticks a gloved hand out but he quickly draws it back in. It is like an oven. There is a sticky coating of dust on the surface of his glove now. He hears a scream from the back of the plane. Chief Petty Officer Umeda is vomiting. The heat is so intense in the plane that Cadet Tomikura opens his window and is hit full in the face with the radioactive holocaust. He quickly shoves the window closed as Komatsu finishes his turn and emerges from the mushroom cloud.

Slowly Komatsu circles the city in the hope of taking pictures of the damage of Nagasaki but the heat is so intense that he lands his seaplane in the harbor and walks toward the city with his companions.

The sun is setting on Japan.

Little Kazuko Tokai is still alive. She was 275 yards from ground zero and she is still alive. Her father died earlier and she can hear her mother's rasping breath. Kazuko calls out to her mother, "Don't die!" but there is no response and never will be.

"I'm the only one left alive."

American officials report the death toll as 35,000 but the Japanese place it as over double that but for little Kazuko, her entire world is gone.

Chief Petty Officer Umeda will die of leukemia, two years later. Cadet Tomikura who got it full in the face with radioactive dust will also die of leukemia in 1964... 19 years later. The pilot, Cadet Nobukazu Komatsu, is still alive as of the publishing date of his story... 1970. I don't know what happened to Kazuko Tokai but clearly she lived long enough to write down her account of what happened to her mother and father so that it could appear in Toland's book.



What is the point of this story?

Fukishima is the least of my worries. Unless the bomb lands right on top of me I've got better things to worry about. And if it does land right on top of me, all my worries will be over.

The most amazing thing about being hit full on with a nuclear blast is that MOST OF YOU WILL SURVIVE! Even the Chief Petty Officer in the story lived for two years. That means at least two years of preps if you don't want to starve to death before then.

Let's get going.

Alex

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2014, 10:04:15 AM »
That's a really interesting story. My grandpa told me an interesting story that sort of ties into this. He was stationed on a hospital ship as a diesel mechanic during WWII. After the bomb dropped on Nagasaki his ship was sent there. When they arrived him and 3 of his buddies from the ship were walking around looking at the devastation, he described it as nothing but rubble and concrete. As they were walking one of the noticed a unharmed bottle of "red wine". They couldn't believe it, everything is smashed and yet a bottle of wine survived. As any 17 year old would they cracked it open and started passing it around among the 4 of them. After a sip or two one of them noticed that all of their mouths were very red. They inspected the bottle again, all of the writing was in Japanese except for two English words at the bottom, "Red Ink".

Me, "Grandpa are you telling me you drank radioactive red ink?"

Grandpa, "Yup."

Me, looking around the room at our extended family "Well, that explains it."

Grandpa, laughs "Yup."

He's still alive and pushing 90.  :)

Offline Alex Shrugged

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2014, 11:53:55 AM »
I used to be a soils inspector in California when I was in my 20s. A company was renovating a factory in Alhambra and they were being careful about it because it had been designated an historical site. Apparently it had been used to build tanks for World War II and we were going to fix it up to look nothing like it did during World War II so I didn't see the point, but there was money involved and I did my job. My job was to complain that everything they were doing was not good enough and we all agreed that it could never be made good enough unless we knocked the whole building over and started again, but that wasn't going to happen. It had the approval of the city inspectors so I guess that made it legal. I was there to make sure the contractors didn't shirk their duties just because they knew this patchwork wouldn't last.

When it came to the parking lot I was told it had once been a dumping ground for solids... concrete, asphalt, car parts... stuff like that. Nothing organic. The contractor was supposed to dig down two feet. I would measure the depth and then they would fill it back in, packing the earth down so that it might hold up... for a little while. It was a nearly worthless endeavor but we persisted. It was my job to make sure they persisted.

As they reached the proper depth, the dozer uncovered a sign at the bottom of the hole. I jumped down to read the sign. It read:

DANGER! RADIOACTIVE!

...or words to that effect.

I looked up at the guys and shouted, "That's deep enough!" and climbed out of the hole. We covered it up.

The sign is still there and I am still alive.

That's the point.

Exposure to radioactivity is no guarantee of death or even sickness....certainly not at the levels in California, Washington, Oregon or Alaska due to anything happening with Fukishima. The Japanese have a problem, certainly, but the danger to people along the west coast of the United States is non-existent. Even the Blue-fin Tuna is OK. It actually migrates from Japan to the west coast of the United States. They have measurable amounts of Fukishima radiation but that doesn't make it dangerous. The level of radiation is less than natural sources of radiation that fish (and people) live with every day. It would be better if it didn't have that stuff in it, but it is not a credible danger to life and limb.

You would do better saving your life by looking both ways before crossing the street. You are in more danger of getting run over in traffic than anything having to do with eating Fukishima fish.

Know what I mean?

Alex

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2014, 12:05:14 PM »
You would do better saving your life by looking both ways before crossing the street. You are in more danger of getting run over in traffic than anything having to do with eating Fukishima fish.

Know what I mean?

Alex


Absolutely. BTW love the history segments you are putting together.  :)

Offline AvenueQ

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2014, 12:25:20 PM »
When I was studying abroad in Japan, I had the opportunity to meet and hear Miyoko Matsubara speak at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. She is a "hibakusha" - an A-bomb survivor. She was less than a mile from the epicenter of the explosion over Hiroshima in 1945. She has had two strokes, numerous cosmetic surgeries to correct deformities that resulted from the blast, and has survived breast cancer. She was unable to have children because of the radiation does she received, but ended up caring for her brother's three children when both he and his wife died from radiation-related causes. When I saw her speak three years ago, she was frail and had trouble speaking from the strokes, but her energy was palpable. It was a very humbling experience for me, to say the least.

Don't get me wrong, it's not that radiation isn't deadly; most of her family that was exposed died before she did along with hundreds of thousands of others. It's just that you can't see it or feel it happening, the symptoms of acute radiation poisoning are horrifying, and the symptoms of low doses can potentially include cancer. Then the media gets involved and no one in the media has a freaking clue what they're talking about when it comes to radiation, so they throw around scary sounding numbers and statistics and just think of the children! It's easy to see why it is so feared. We fear that which we do not understand.

You can find her story that she wrote about the experience here, if you're interested: http://www.worldsecuritynetwork.com/Japan/Matsubara-Miyoko/A-Hiroshima-Survivor-Miyoko-Matsubara-Tells-Hubertus-Hoffmann-Her-Story

Offline Alex Shrugged

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2014, 02:02:07 PM »
Yes. I recall the story of Miyoko Matsubara. You can find it on page 969 of Toland's book. It is amazing and it was her story that came immediately to mind when I was thinking of direct exposure to radiation. It is also not very pleasant to say the least but if the goal of the Survival Podcast listeners is to survive, then doing nothing is foolish, but doing things out of proportion to the danger is more than foolish.

Miyoko Matsubara was 14 years old as I recall. She was working with 350 other students clearing a lot for construction when the pika (the flash) happened. 300 students turned toward the flash signing their own death warrants. Miyoko did something different. She hid her face and ducked. When she awoke everything was gone. Pieces of her flesh were falling off of her.

You know the rest.

Those who died died fairly quickly. Those who survived are the ones from whom we must take this lesson. Exposure to radiation is not necessarily a death sentence. Most of you who manage to survive the initial exposure will live quite a long time. Months? Very likely. Years? Almost certainly. Will you live to be 90 years old? No guarantees, but how are you going to live that long if you aren't prepared to survive?

The worst problem to overcome when addressing what to do about radiation poisoning is the hopeless feeling one has THINKING about it. Most people freeze up and do nothing at all... not even preparing for a normal disaster. They just figure, "I'll be dead and it won't matter." But very likely you WON'T be dead and it WILL matter. You won't look too good but most folks will survive for years. If you want those years to be productive and good, you had better be prepared.

What we are talking about is a local disaster like a nuclear power plant being blown up by terrorists or an earthquake destroying a containment tank or something like that. It could happen but what is the danger to you? Unless you are living right next door to a nuclear melt down, I don't see it as a priority. It might make your wife feel better that you have meds available but that's close to the full value of having such meds on hand. There are more important things to have before that.

I'm just saying...
« Last Edit: January 21, 2014, 02:07:49 PM by Alex Shrugged »

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Ep-1283- Listener Feedback - Into the Mushroom Cloud
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2014, 08:07:15 PM »
Thanks, Alex, for the history lesson. 

This is a great way of inserting a healthy dose of reality into yet another prepper issue that's driven more by fear and fantasy, rather than critical thinking.