The Outlook on Tohoku

We all know of the “Great East Japan Earthquake” that happened earlier this year and how devastating it was. It has had a massive effect on the Japanese economy, but I also want to talk about some of the other effects it has had on Japan and other countries in the sociological aspects.

First point I would like to talk about is the relief efforts the world has put forth to help Japan in their time of need. It is truly something that is hard to express in words. This picture is a map of the countries of the world that offered assistance to Japan by either donating or by sending rescue squads to Japan in their time of need. This has been a very hard year for Japan, and it was great to see how the world came together to aid them.

The international response to the events that took place in the Tohoku region have been mixed through media. Due to the news and media coverage in foreign countries during the earthquakes, tsunamis, and radiation people’s view on Japan has changed in good and bad ways. From my own personal experience, the news broadcasted in America about the radiation and lack of food in Japan was blown out of proportion in my opinion, and because of this, I was forced to return back to America even though I was living in the Kansai region. Many countries, when they heard that the earthquake had occurred in Japan, they believed that the whole country was in jeopardy. It was not only American media, but many other students studying abroad were called back to their homes, especially Europeans. This also cancelled many study abroad options this year for foreigners going to Japan due to liability issues.  This is just one of the international results from the Tohoku events that took place.

Another important point I would like to bring up for discussion is the fact that many people who lost their home have had to go through hard times in recovery and some have had to resort to moving to different places in Japan. Also, think about the effect this has on the children of those regions that were hit the most. I’m sure their lives have been completely changed due to the earthquake. I understand that this is a hard topic to talk about, especially for Japanese people, but I would like to see how everyone views the events that took place and how they were handled or broadcasted in your countries. When a disaster strikes a country like this, think of the drastic changes that take place in families and countries. I believe that countries, through help form the rest of the world, pick themselves up and become stronger because of disasters such as this.

by Aaron (AJ) Glass