Japan still needs lots of help for the Tohoku region. I was moved to tears again tonight reading the details about the Minami Sanriku town that I visited last weekend. From wikipedia (thanks for adding this):
Miki Endo (远藤未希), a 25 year old employee of the town's Crisis Management Department, was hailed in the Japanese news media as a heroine for continuing to broadcast warnings and alerts over a community loudspeaker system as the tsunami came in. She was credited with saving many lives. The three-storey headquarters of the department remained standing but was completely gutted, with only a red-colored steel skeleton remaining; in the aftermath of the disaster, Endo was missing and was later confirmed to have died. Photos show the roof of the building completely submerged at the height of the inundation, with some persons clinging to the rooftop antenna.When we visited, we placed flowers and burned incense at the make-shift altar that have been placed in front of the remains of the Crisis Management Department building.
Some 10 people who made it up to the roof of this building actually survived even though the tsunami completely flooded the entire three-story building. What remains is just rubble and you have to admire the bravery of Endo-san and everyone in this hard-hit harbour town.
Now, however, there is news that this devastated town is asked to pay rent for a field hospital it erected in March. Some 50 Israeli doctors used it and it is said to be the first working hospital in the region after the disaster struck. For that, I'm sure the people in Minami Sanriku are very grateful, but the fact is, they will have to pay a bill of ¥2.1 million in its supplementary budget for this fiscal year to cover rental payments to the company that built the temporary structures, according to Kyodo/The Japan Times. Of course, one could ask the Japanese construction company to not ask for payments, but does anyone think they are having an easy time right now?
I am just wondering if this humble blog has any readers in Israel, who might try to do something to help.
The top image shows the Crisis Management Department building, middle image is from an article about Ms. Endo, and the bottom image is what remains of the large (but gutted) Minami Sanriku hospital (I don't have any images of the field hospital).
Video from NHK World with an interview where Ms. Endo's parent's describe how she chose to work in Minami Sanriku to be close to her parents, and that she was "very dedicated, and would never leave her position until she was told to."
"A hospital alone shows what war is." -Erich Maria Remarque