Japanese journalist Jun Hori has resigned from his job as anchor for NHK, the Japanese state broadcaster, stating that his network censored what he was allowed to say about the Fukushima disaster, and that they were hesitant to report on the full extent of the situation.
“I am a newscaster, but I couldn’t tell the true story on my news program,” said Hori.
He went on to imply that there was an unwritten rule in the news room that you don’t question information from official sources. Much of the “official” news coverage of Fukushima consisted of press releases and announcements from big companies and people in power.
According to James Corbett, editor of The Corbett Report, this is business as usual. In an interview with Russian Times, Corbett said:
TEPCO has lied obfuscated and covered up the truth about what they knew about, or know about what is going on at sites since day one….
We have had cover up of the fact that there was and continues to be 300 tons of radioactive water flooding through the site. That wasn’t really revealed to the public until the summer of 2013, two years after the event took place. Cover-up after cover-up continuously being revealed and only very much later after the fact.
In regards to the relationship between TEPCO and the Japanese government, Corbett went on to say:
Technically TEPCO has now been nationalized with the Japanese government being the largest stakeholder. So there is a direct Japanese government stake in the company. That is obviously a situation which creates a type of direct relationship between the company and the government in which obviously the interest of the government and interest of the company are directly tied financially. It creates a very worrying situation
Frustrated by not being allowed to report the news as he saw fit, Hori had begun unofficially covering events through his Twitter channel, until higher-ups, acting on complaints from politicians, told him to stop.
Joining a growing wave of public-run new media, Jun Hori now runs a citizen’s journalism web site at 8bitnews.org .