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After a tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan eight years ago today, triggering the meltdowns of three reactors, many believed it would result in a public health catastrophe.
“By now close to one million people have died of causes linked to the Chernobyl disaster,” wrote Helen Caldicott, an Australian medical doctor, in The New York Times. Fukushima could “far exceed Chernobyl in terms of the effects on public health.”
Many pro-nuclear people came to believe that the accident was proof that the dominant form of nuclear reactor, which is cooled by water, is fatally flawed. They called for radically different kinds of reactors to make the technology “inherently safe.”
Tim Pearce | Energy Reporter
Natural gas from the U.S. is flooding Polish markets as the European country seeks to loosen Russia’s grip on its energy security, The New York Times reports.
Russia supplies roughly half of Poland’s fuel, but long-term contracts with American companies signed by Poland’s state-owned gas giant PGNiG could displace all of Russia’s supply. U.S.-based companies Cheniere Energy, Venture Global LNG and Sempra Energy have all signed agreements with Poland in the last six months.
[According to this report, it looks like Ukraine drew first blood. Anybody have additional information? -Bob]
By Michael Snyder – Re-Blogged From Freedom Outpost
A respected foreign journalist living in Ukraine is warning that a war that most Americans cannot even imagine “teeters on the razor-thin edge of becoming real”. When Russia opened fire on Ukrainian Navy vessels and captured three of their ships, it made headlines all over the globe. An emergency meeting of the UN Security Council was hastily arranged for Monday at 11 AM, and hopefully, there will be a positive outcome from that meeting. Because right now Moscow and Kiev are on the brink of war, and once a Russian invasion happens there will be no turning back. At that point the U.S. would have a major decision to make, and if we chose to defend Ukraine that could mean that we would suddenly find ourselves fighting World War 3.
- Like other states in the European borderlands, Belarus will continue to seek to take advantage of the Russia-West standoff to meet its strategic interests.
- Moves by Poland, the Baltic states and Ukraine to elicit greater security assistance from NATO and the United States are compromising Belarus’ efforts to serve as a mediator between Moscow and the West.
- Belarus and the other borderland countries will be unable to escape their geopolitical vulnerabilities, because their fates are shaped by the larger powers surrounding them.
- Tensions between the West and Russia are ratcheting up in the wake of the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal.
- The heightened hostilities will make day-to-day operations more challenging for foreign companies, nongovernmental organizations and journalists working in Russia.
- In addition to the threat of government surveillance and harassment, foreigners will likely be the targets of increased violence from nationalists and nationalist gangs.
(KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)
Re-Blogged From Stratfor
Stratfor’s geopolitical guidance provides insight on what we’re watching out for in the week ahead.
The poisoning of former Russian spy Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia has exacerbated the already tense relationship between the United Kingdom and Russia. As a result, British Prime Minister Theresa May said her government was reviewing a range of diplomatic, financial and economic responses to the likely Russia-backed poisoning, which took place in her country. And the United Kingdom requested that the Kremlin hand over materials and samples of its military grade nerve agent, Novichok, by the end of the day on March 13. Meanwhile, the Russian Foreign Ministry has denied receiving the request and in turn has asked for full access to the investigation and samples of the nerve agent, since Yulia is still a Russian citizen.