x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Japan should acknowledge scope of disaster

Readers respond to The National's coverage and issues of the day.

While The Lord of the Rings trilogy was popular in theatres, a reader argues that the books are often under-appreciated. Another questions The National's recent literary criticism across the board. AP
While The Lord of the Rings trilogy was popular in theatres, a reader argues that the books are often under-appreciated. Another questions The National's recent literary criticism across the board. AP

In regards to Radiation levels in Japan now 'harmful to human health' (March 15), I'm not a conspiracy wacko, but in a country that is so proud of and reliant upon fail-safe systems and technology, my scepticism grows every time I hear Japan's chief cabinet secretary, Yukio Edano, update the world on the nuclear fiasco taking place in his country.

Mr Edano looks more and more strange as his statements continue to downplay the situation and reassure - only to be contradicted by events taking place.

Look, Japan just had a 9.0 magnitude earthquake that caused a massive tsunami and destruction. Even with a warning system that didn't have enough time to work, with thousands who have been killed, back-up generators at the reactor sites that didn't work, the explosions and the releases of radiation, there is nothing to be embarrassed about.

Japan should set pride aside and stop talking in nuances and let the world know what is happening. Sure, they don't want to create panic, but at least allow people, especially those who are downwind, to make rational choices based on real information.

MD, United States

Smite criticism of literary classics

The Lord of The Rings is overrated? (10 overrated literary classics, March 11). Did you read all three books? The Hobbit, which is recommended in the article, is very similar. All are awesome books.

Harry Potter, on the other hand, and Pride and Prejudice are completely overrated.

In fact, if anything, LOTR is underrated, and only made widely popular because of the films.

Ali J, Dubai

This fear-of-intelligence article is ridiculous fluff. Just man-up (or woman-up, as the case may be) and read all 20 books, good and bad, mentioned in the article.

Nicholas Karavatos, Abu Dhabi

Former employee faces hardship

In 2009, I was a temporary employee at a Dubai bank, and since I have managed to land other jobs, but in each case the bank blocked the job offers.

I was offered two jobs at the same bank, but was rejected for both because the bank said that employees cannot rejoin the organisation until two years after leaving the company. I hadn't willingly left, but was forced out during downsizing.

I had a credit card with an outstanding balance with the same bank, but it did not give me an opportunity to work so I could not pay the bank back. Eventually I was detained and sentenced to one month in Al Aweer jail.

I am the bread winner of the family and have not been able to support my parents at home for two years now.

Saqlain Farooq, Dubai

Shorthand skills are a dying art

The land where Isaac Pitman, shorthand inventor, is a god (March 9) was a fitting tribute to thousands of stenographers worldwide who once ruled the administrative divisions of private and government offices.

Just three decades ago, we were in a world when aspiring students rushed to shorthand and typewriting institutes to improve their English and learn the skills to start a career.

In those days, shorthand also led to an opportunity to read English literature and learn more about the nuances of the language and its grammar.

Gone are those days and now one sees hands occupied by recording equipment and mobile phones. I really wonder how many people know shorthand to assist them in case of a technology breakdown.

This field of education died slowly as new methods and tools came into being and people started ignoring the educational and utilitarian value.

My mother who used to be a senior typewriting and shorthand teacher. Before her retirement 20 years ago, she had to switch to teaching English because of the lack of students.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

Wrong number on unwilling transfer

Recently, I received a message saying that my Etisalat account has been migrated to eLife although I did not make any request for the transfer.

The service is costing me Dh299, whereas my Al Shamil and telephone accounts together cost me only Dh169.

When I received the message alerting me to the transfer via sms on my mobile, I immediately sent a complaint to the customer service section.

I have been frequently in touch with Etisalat since then and no action has been taken. Many of my friends have had the same problem and I think this issue should be fully discussed until there is a resolution.

Nujum Niyaz, Abu Dhabi