Take an aerial tour of tsunami-stricken Japan via Google Maps

I just noticed that the Google Maps‘ satellite imagery of Japan has been updated and now shows things post-tsunami. The devastation is astonishing. If you want to see just how extensive it is, you don’t need to get aboard a government aircraft to survey the damage. In Google Maps, just type in “Miyagi Prefecture Japan” and then zoom in.

Vast areas of previously inhabited areas — houses, business, and various buildings of all sizes — have literally been razed down to their foundations, leaving huge expanses of what once were bustling neighborhoods, even whole municipalities, are now . . . empty . . . except for the desultory heaps of wreckage and rubble strewn everywhere. All that trash and debris just lying around un-removed would be unthinkable for Japan, a country where cleanliness and order are highly prized and diligently fostered by Japanese. Perhaps these satellite images were added before clean-up efforts began. Or, it’s quite possible that the radioactive contamination emanating from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuke plant makes clean up impossible in those areas.

This what’s left of the Nakahama Post Office:

How come we don’t hear anything anymore (not even in the prayers of the faithful at Mass) about praying for the people who are still suffering in Japan? Let’s not forget what happened there. It could happen here. At least in Japan there are steep hills and mountains up which people can run to escape the waves. There’s no such thing in those low-lying areas of the US, such as Florida. Imagine what would happen if a similar earthquake-generated tsunami were to come barreling into either coast of Florida. It would be curtains. Lights out. Game over.

One Comment

  1. Sue

    I thought you might like this link about the Pope’s Emissary praying in Sendai. The location is very near to our family’s summer cabin. We are very thankful for the Cardinal’s prayers, and also the work being done in that area by Caritas volunteers! http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20110517a5.html

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