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Fukushima and Hiroshima” via the New York Times

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS — Nothing is more rapidly globalized than nuclear fear.

The partial meltdown of reactors in Fukushima, Japan, has created overwhelming fear in people living nearby, considerable fear in people living in the rest of Japan, and a certain amount of fear in people throughout Asia and even in Europe and the United States.

Nor can this fear be simply dismissed as hysteria. It can be exaggerated — especially in relation to other continents — but the fact is that, depending on what happens to the reactors, how the wind blows, and what kind of radiation plume develops, the danger could be grave. Moreover, there is still much ignorance about the kind of harm done to human beings by various levels of radiation.

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