Monday, March 14, 2011

Japan: the tragedy

This post will likely grow through the day. I can't (and won't try to) compete with sites that are on top of this situation, but can't let it go without comment.

Andy Dollahite points me to a NYT piece giving some gut-wrenching before-and-after GeoEye shots of Japan. Here's just one:

Here is one of several clips showing the progress of the devastation (h-t Challies):

From Merrilee Stevenson comes this harrowing street-level view, showing a rapid advance from a low-level flow to a torrent that is carrying buildings in its wake.

One thinks of a tsunami as a wall of water. A recent movie had a fairly amazing sequence of a tsunami in a village, but it showed the buildings mostly remaining standing, and a relatively debris-free flow of water.

This footage shows the reality: it isn't that the water is 25 feet high, it is that it is relentless and unstoppable and already filled with deadly debris and fires. You see ships and buildings and cars being carried along. The task of  identifying those killed must surely be worse than 9/11, as these victims will be spread out over miles under seemingly limitless debris.

I am praying for Christian relief workers and for victims. As I learn of leading agencies, I mean to pass that information along.

UPDATE: what Christian Gospel-oriented relief organization would you recommend, and why?


JackW said...

That before and after picture didn’t make any sense to me until I looked at the link. I was expecting it to be the same landmass where you could overlay the one over the other, but it’s a left side of the landmass before, right side of landmass after.

This is scary stuff.

JackW said...

Oh ... and there is a slider control also ... wow.

Brad Williams said...

Besides the sickening feeling I get at the loss of life that is undoubtedly terribly under-estimated at the moment, some thoughts spring to mind.

When the Lord says, "Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’" (Job 38:8-10), we really don't understand how awesome that is.

Also, I think that a world-wide life-exstinguishing flood is not really that difficult to imagine after seeing this, do you?

Lynda O said...

Yes, this event really shows the power of God, always beyond our ability to comprehend. Maybe we're also getting a preview of Luke 21:25-26, Jesus' words during the Olivet Discourse: the nations distressed, in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves.

Sir Aaron said...


When I see this I'm reminded of the proud atheists that constantly say that we know enough to predict the effects of a worldwide flood.

Personally, I don't think we have any clue as to what the Genesis flood did to the earth. And events like this only serve to reinforce my position.

Gabby said...

It must be very frightening for those who place their faith in Mother Earth instead of Father God. If I didn't know that God is sovereign and rules His creation I think my heart would stop for fear and trembling.

Al Mohler has written some good thoughts on this -

Gilbert said...

The tragedy isn't the staggering loss of life. It's those who have now faced judgment without Christ as their Savior and Lord. The numbers of those potentially just scare me.

As for earthquakes, mind you, we also have a similar fault setup in the Pacific Northwest, and we also have one right in DJP's backyard in California. It has been a very long time that the Cascadia Fault Line has given way, and there's an 80% chance of a megaquake in the next 50 years:

And our nuclear reactors, buildings, and highways out in DJP-land aren't even remotely as good in terms of building construction standards as those in Japan.

What I pray for is repentance and faith in Christ to those who now clearly see how short, fragile and fleeting life is; to give strength to those who already know Christ, and for wisdom, guidance and safety to those who are rescuing survivors, dealing with the nuclear plant issues, and an immense amount of human suffering.
And, that people here in the U.S. and elsewhere would also consider the same thing.

And Dan, to answer your question, consider:

I saw their website, but haven't heard anything about them, until now.

Becky, slave of Christ said...

I thought of the same verse, Brad. The footage coming out of there is overwhelming.

Sir Aaron said...

actually, our nuclear reactors have the same technology as those in Japan.

Scooter said...

Here's some valuable, and accurate, data on Japan's nuclear reactors and what is currently happening over there. Contrast what the article says of radioactive steam vs the MSM description.

Sir Aaron said...


Good link. But the MSM folks want us to live in teepees with solar panels.

Paula said...

Not in any way wanting to minimize the tragedy in Japan....but I've been having issues with Google Reader inserting videos in the wrong posts. Below this sentence:

"Here is one of several clips showing the progress of the devastation"

was the video of Martin Bashir's MSNBC interview of Rob Bell. Coincidence?