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[VIDEO] Watch a U.S. Air Force F-15E drop a dummy Nuclear Bomb on Nevada range during a test via The Aviationist

Between Jun. 29 and Jul. 1, the Air Force Nuclear Weapons center tested a (dummy) B61 nuke weapon on the Nevada Test and Training Range to the northwest of Las Vegas.

It was the first development flight test of the B61-12, the latest update to the nuclear gravity bomb that has been used since the 1960s.

[…]

The video below shows preparation and drop of the bomb from an F-15E Strike Eagle out of Nellis Air Force Base. Pretty interesting to see is the release of the nuke, with the spin rockets activating shortly after separation for free fall weapon stabilization.

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日本で原発再稼動へ、事故後初=「狂ってる」「迷惑極まりない」「使わないわけにはいくまい」―韓国ネット via Record China

2015年7月31日、韓国・聯合ニュースは、日本が福島原発事故後閉鎖していた原発が初となる再稼働を迎えると報じた。

日本メディアによると、九州電力は特に問題がなければ8月10日に川内原発1号機を再稼働する方針だ。
この報道に、韓国のネットユーザーからさまざまなコメントが寄せられている。

(略)

「地震があったら、また事故を起こすんじゃないのか?」
「被害は自分たちだけにしてくれよ」
「迷惑極まりない」
「正気か?日本国民は全員狂っている」

「鹿児島の川内原発は韓国に近いから、もしも事故になれば放射能が風に乗って韓国に来てしまう」
「安全運転を心がけてくれ。あなた方の事故は自分たちだけの災害ではなく、世界全体の災害になってしまうから」
「原発を稼動させないと言っていたのでは?いい加減だな」
「朴槿恵(パク・クネ)大統領は抗議もせずにいるが、また事故が起こってからでは遅いぞ」

「人間の欲によって原発は必要悪になってしまった。使わないわけにはいかない」

全文は日本で原発再稼動へ、事故後初=「狂ってる」「迷惑極まりない」「使わないわけにはいくまい」―韓国ネット

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Sendai N-Reactor Could Restart on Aug. 10 to End Japan’s N-Free Period via Jiji Press

   Kagoshima, July 31 (Jiji Press)–Kyushu Electric Power Co. <9508> notified the Nuclear Regulation Authority of a plan to restart the No. 1 reactor of its Sendai nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, as early as Aug. 10, ending nearly two years without nuclear power in Japan.

The Sendai No. 1 reactor, which has been idle since being taken offline in May 2011 for a routine inspection, will be Japan’s first reactor to be brought back online since the country’s last operating reactor went idle in September 2013.

It will also be the first reactor to be restarted of the five that have been confirmed by the NRA as meeting Japan’s enhanced safety standards, introduced in July 2013 following the triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant triggered by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Continue reading at Sendai N-Reactor Could Restart on Aug. 10 to End Japan’s N-Free Period

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被爆者調査、7割が「9条堅持」via ロイター

全国の被爆者に核兵器の廃絶や日本の 安全保障をめぐる現状について尋ねた共同通信のアンケートで、憲法9条の改正に7割近くが「反対」であることが1日、分かった。悲惨な体験から「二度と戦 争をするべきではない」と考える被爆者の多くが、9条堅持を不戦につながると考えていることが明らかになった。

また、約8割が、現在の国際情勢の中で核兵器使用の恐れを感じると回答。広島、長崎への原爆投下から70年を前にして、なお核兵器廃絶が進まない現状に焦りを募らせ、懸念を強める姿が浮かび上がった。

続きは被爆者調査、7割が「9条堅持」

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Nuclear watchdog proposes raising maximum radiation dose to 250 millisieverts via The Asahi Shimbun

Nuclear plant workers in Japan will be allowed to be exposed to more than twice the current level of radiation in emergency situations, according to the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s Radiation Council.

The radiation exposure limit will be raised from the current 100 millisieverts to 250 millisieverts in emergencies, the radiation council announced in a report released July 30.

The higher level is still only half of the accepted international safety level of 500 millisieverts set by the International Commission on Radiological Protection, an influential independent organization that provides guidelines on radiation protection, for rescue workers in emergency situations at nuclear facilities.

The new cap will be activated from April 2016 after revisions to the nuclear reactor regulatory law and the Industrial Safety and Health Law.

The limit was temporarily raised to 250 millisieverts by the radiation council following the triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

The decision was quickly made by the council members through e-mail discussions as the 100 millisieverts limit could have caused a shortage of workers tackling the emergency at the plant. Later, the limit was returned to 100 millisieverts.

[…]

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Nuclear Zero Lawsuit by Marshall Islands Appealed to Higher Court via Reader Supported News

By Jane Ayers

Desmond Tutu states lawsuit “good for humanity,” and all U.S. mayors agree in Resolution to back the nuclear disarmament lawsuit

An interview with David Krieger, President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation (Santa Barbara, California), and Consultant to the Marshall Islands

Q: The “Nuclear Zero” lawsuit filed by the Republic of Marshall Islands (RMI) against the nine nuclear nations to adhere to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) was denied in February by Judge Jeffrey White in U.S. Federal District Court (SF). RMI Foreign Minister Tony de Blum wants the U.S. and other nuclear nations to negotiate in good faith for nuclear disarmament, so why did this lawsuit get denied, and is the Appeal brief filed on July 13th an indication of ‘no backing down’ by the Marshall Islands?

Krieger: The lawsuit against the United States in U.S. Federal District Court was denied on jurisdictional grounds, having to do with standing and the political question doctrine. The Marshall Islands and its legal team believe the judgment was in error, and the ruling was appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (SF) on July 13th.

Q: Judge Jeffrey White’s decision noted that the Non-Proliferation Treaty’s fundamental purpose is to slow the spread of nuclear weapons, and to bar the non-nuclear countries from acquiring nuclear weapons. However, the Marshall Islands lawsuit focuses on the continuing breach of the treaty’s nuclear disarmament obligations. Do you think the judge’s decision to dismiss this case was based on a fundamental difference in the interpretation of the NPT’s core purpose? Do you think the number of groups filing Amicus Briefs with the Appeal [in support of the Marshall Islands] indicates that total nuclear disarmament should be seriously addressed, instead of just modernizing the arsenals?

Krieger: The judge was not correct in focusing only on the treaty’s provisions for preventing the spread of nuclear weapons. A critical element of the Non-Proliferation Treaty is Article VI, which calls for negotiating an end to the nuclear arms race at an early date, and achieving nuclear disarmament through good faith negotiations. The judge omitted from his decision reference to the importance of the nuclear disarmament provisions of the NPT. Many parties to the NPT consider the nuclear disarmament obligations to be the most important obligations of the treaty, and certainly a tradeoff for preventing proliferation to other nations. The goal of the treaty is to obtain a world with zero nuclear weapons – no proliferation of nuclear weapons, and good faith negotiations for nuclear disarmament by the countries that already have nuclear weapons.
[…]
Krieger: The Marshall Islands also brought the Nuclear Zero lawsuits against all nine nuclear-armed nations to the International Court of Justice. However, the way the ICJ works is that only the countries who accept the compulsory jurisdiction of the court can be held into the lawsuits. Among the nine nuclear armed countries, only India, Pakistan, and the United Kingdom accept the court’s compulsory jurisdiction. The other six countries, including the U.S., do not accept the court’s compulsory jurisdiction, and can only be invited to join the case. None of these six have joined thus far. The legal system at the international level is equivalent to a situation where someone is injured by corporate misconduct, and the injured party would have to invite the defendant to court, rather than there being compulsory jurisdiction to assure the defendant does not have a choice about showing up in court.

That is an important reason why a separate case was initially brought against the U.S. in U.S. Federal District Court (SF). If the U.S. can’t be held to account for its treaty obligations at the International Court of Justice, and it also can’t be held to account in its own federal courts, then how can any country have confidence in entering into treaty obligations with the U.S.?

The Marshall Islands can still prevail in their cases at ICJ against India, Pakistan, and the U.K., since these three countries have compulsory jurisdiction. Should the Marshall Islands win its case against the U.K., it would have important implications for the other four nuclear-armed countries that are parties to the NPT. If the international court declares that the U.K. is not in accord with its obligations under the treaty, then that would reflect on the similar obligations owed by the U.S., Russia, France, and China.

But a victory in these cases will be won not only in the courtroom, but in the court of public opinion. People everywhere need to understand that the nine nuclear-armed countries are not fulfilling their obligations to end the nuclear arms race, and to achieve nuclear disarmament. Quite the opposite, they are engaged in modernizing and improving their nuclear arsenals. The people of the world have to say to their leaders, “Enough is enough.” If we want to have a human future, we need to stop playing nuclear roulette.
[…]
I consider the current approach of the U.S. and the other nuclear weapon states to modernizing their nuclear arsenals to being akin to playing nuclear roulette. It is like metaphorically loading nuclear weapons into the chambers of a six-shooter, and pointing the gun at humanity’s head.

[…]

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長崎平和宣言で安保法案に言及へ via 産経ニュース

長崎市の田上富久市長は31日、被爆70年となる8月9日の「長崎原爆の日」の平和祈念式典で読み上げる平和宣言の骨子を発表し、安全保障関連法案の慎重な審議を政府や国会に求める内容を盛り込むと明らかにした。
[…]
広島市は安保法案に直接言及しないとしており、対照的となった。

全文を読む。
長崎新聞 

田上市長は会見で「平和宣言では何らかの形で平和の理念を盛り込んできた。その理念が『揺らいでいるのでは』と多くの人が思っているのは事実」と理由を説明。一方で「さまざまな意見がある」として法案の是非には踏み込まず、国民への丁寧な説明などを求める。

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3 Former Executives to Be Prosecuted in Fukushima Nuclear Disaster via The New York Times

TOKYO — In the first criminal prosecutions of officials connected to the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster of 2011, the Japanese authorities said Friday that they would move forward with cases against three former executives of the Tokyo Electric Power Company, the owner of the plant where reactors melted down after a tsunami.

The move was a victory for citizens’ groups that have been pursuing charges against dozens of officials at Tokyo Electric Power, known as Tepco, and the government, with no success until now. Prosecutors had twice rejected requests to indict the three former Tepco executives, but a review board overruled their decision on Friday and ordered that charges be brought.
[…]
It is rare for prosecutors’ discretion over indictments to be challenged in Japan. The reversal was ordered by a panel of 11 private citizens, convened through a rarely used feature of the Japanese legal system that allows outsiders to review prosecutors’ decisions under certain circumstances.

It was the second time that such a panel, known as a committee for the inquest of prosecution, had determined that the former executives should be prosecuted. The first panel delivered its conclusion last year, after the Tokyo district prosecutors’ office rejected a criminal complaint against the executives filed by the plaintiffs group.

The prosecutors declined to act on the first panel’s recommendation, but the plaintiffs group appealed, and a second and final panel was convened. Under the rules governing the review panels, the second panel’s decision is binding on prosecutors.
The three executives who face indictment are Tsunehisa Katsumata, 75, the chairman of Tepco at the time of the accident, and two former heads of the utility’s nuclear division, Sakae Muto, 65, and Ichiro Takekuro, 69. The review panel ordered that they be charged with professional negligence resulting in death.

[…]
Though the indictments represent a long-sought symbolic achievement for the antinuclear movement, the likelihood that the men will be found guilty at trial may be low. When Japanese prosecutors bring charges on their own initiative, they win convictions more than 99 percent of the time, but cases forced on them by citizens’ review panels are different. Almost by definition, they involve charges that prosecutors saw little hope of proving.

Nobuo Gohara, a former prosecutor, said a large majority of such cases result in acquittals. To convict the Tokyo Electric Power executives, prosecutors would have to prove that their failure to predict the massive tsunami that struck Fukushima’s coast in March 2011 and to equip the power plant with sufficient protections against it constituted an act of criminal oversight.

[…]

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東電起訴議決:告訴団「永久に闇…から、ようやく土俵に」via 毎日新聞

2011年の東京電力福島第1原発事故を巡り、東京第5検察審査会は31日、東京地検が2度にわたって容疑不十分で不起訴とした東京電力の勝俣恒久 元会長(75)ら旧経営陣3人を、業務上過失致死傷罪で起訴すべきだとする「起訴議決」を公表した。審査を申し立てた「福島原発告訴団」の被災者らメン バーは午後2時過ぎ、検察審査会の入る東京・霞が関の東京地裁前で「市民の正義」と書かれた旗を掲げ「やっとここまで来た」と喜んだ。

武藤類子団長(61)は続いて開いた記者会見で「裁判で事故の真実が明らかにされ、正当な裁きが下されることを信じている」と声明を発表。「今も仮設住宅から家に帰れない人がいる。(旧経営陣には)裁判で包み隠さず真実を語ってほしい」と力を込めた。

弁護団の河合弘之弁護士は「事故がなぜ起きたのか。検察の不起訴で永久に闇に葬られるところを、何とか市民の正義感が防いだ」と強調した。海渡雄一弁護士は東電が経済事情から津波対策を先送りにしたと議決が指摘した点などを「非常に論理的」と評価した。

福島県庁でも告訴団のメンバー8人が会見した。副団長の佐藤和良さん(61)が議決要旨を読み上げると、涙を流す人もいた。佐藤さんは「事故から 4年半たち、ようやく事故の原因と責任を特定するための土俵に立てた」と感慨深げに話した。自営業の人見やよいさん(54)は「原発を再稼働しようとして いる電力会社は、事故を起こせば刑事責任を問われるという覚悟を持ってほしい」と訴えた。【平塚雄太、近松仁太郎、土江洋範】

 ◇検察審査会は社会常識に照らして適切な認定

元検事で原発事故捜査を研究している古川元晴弁護士の話 検察は「原子力ムラ」の論理で旧経営陣の過失を否定したが、検察審査会は社会常識に照ら して判断し、適切な認定をした。10メートルを大きく超える津波の対策を講じなかった経緯について、当時の科学的知見を踏まえ詳細に認定しており説得力も ある。原発事故では取り返しのつかない被害が発生する。万が一を想定して対策を講じるのが当然で、検察は市民の判断を重く受け止めるべきだ。命に関わる重 大事故では、責任の所在を曖昧にしてはならない。国民が納得する判決を期待したい。

 ◇無罪判決が言い渡される可能性も

(略)

 ◇妥当な判断、司法の場で真相や証言を明らかに

全文は東電起訴議決:告訴団「永久に闇…から、ようやく土俵に」

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Karl Grossman: There is no “peaceful nuclear power” via Politics.com

[…]

Although enriched uranium was the fuel used in the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, plutonium was the fuel in the atomic bomb that devastated Nagasaki—and virtually all atomic bombs ever since have used plutonium, not enriched uranium.

Gathering plutonium for atomic bombs from spent fuel from a nuclear power plant can be accomplished by having a “hot cell”—s very common, indeed ubiquitous machine used in nuclear technology—and separating out the plutonium chemically with it.

Hot cells are shielded nuclear radiation chambers. They’re used to protect technicians inspecting nuclear fuel rods from a nuclear plant or processing medical isotopes. But they have long been a concern when it comes to the proliferation of nuclear weapons because of their potential use to carry out the chemical steps of extracting plutonium from reactor fuel.

When I was an anchor of the nightly news at the then Long Island commercial TV channel, WSNL-TV 35 years ago, anchorpeople from all over the U.S. were invited to a three-day symposium on nuclear weapons proliferation held at the Kennedy School at Harvard. The object was for us to know the facts behind the proliferation issue if and when we needed to report on what could be the terrible outcome of it. The hot cell was a major item discussed. It remains a major proliferation concern.

[…]

“A large power reactor,” they noted, “annually produces…hundreds of kilograms of plutonium.” Civilian nuclear power technology, they concluded, provides the way to make nuclear weapons, furnishing the material and the trained personnel.

Indeed, that’s how India got The Bomb in 1974. Canada supplied a nuclear reactor to be used for “peaceful purposes” and the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission trained Indian engineers. And lo and behold, India had nuclear weapons.

[…]

It was the U.S. with its “Atoms for Peace” program in the 1950s that encouraged Iran to develop nuclear power. After the rupture of relations between the countries with the Iranian revolution of 1979, Russia stepped in, completing Bushehr I.

More details on how plutonium, a manmade element, is created in a nuclear power plant: 97 percent of the uranium fuel in a nuclear power plant is Uranium-238 which does not fission or split. Only 3 percent of the uranium is Uranium-235, which does fission or split, and it is from

this reaction that comes the heat used to boil water, turn a turbine and generate electricity. However, much of the Uranium-238 will, in proximity to fission, absorb a neutron and change to another element, Plutonium-239. Plutonium-239 is extremely radioactive and has a half-life of 24,100 years, so it’s radioactive for 240,000 years. It was first produced during the World War II Manhattan Project as an alternative fuel for atomic bombs to uranium, the supply of which was considered limited. Plutonium-239 became the preferred bomb fuel for atomic bombs and plutonium is also used as the “trigger” in hydrogen bombs.

[…]

Admiral Hyman Rickover, “father” of the U.S. nuclear navy and in charge of construction of America’s first nuclear power plant, Shippingport in Pennsylvania, opened in 1957, saw the light regarding nuclear power decades later—and voiced his completely changed position.

In a “farewell address” in 1982, to a committee of the U.S. Congress, Rickover bluntly declared that the world must “outlaw nuclear reactors.”

He said it had been “impossible to have any life on earth: that is, there was so much radiation on earth you couldn’t have any life—fish or anything. Gradually, about 2 billion years ago, the amount of radiation on this planet and probably in the entire system reduced and made it possible for some for some form of life to begin.”

“Now,” he continued, “when we go back to using nuclear power, we are creating something which nature tried to destroy to make life possible.… Every time you produce radiation, you produce something that has life, in some cases for billions of years, and I think there the human race is going to wreck itself, and it’s far more important that we get control of this horrible force and try to eliminate it.”

As for atomic weaponry, Rickover said the “lesson of history” is that nations in war “will use whatever weaponry they have.”

Read more at Karl Grossman: There is no “peaceful nuclear power”

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