TOKYO (AP) – Just four hours after a tsunami swept into the Fukushima nuclear power plant, Japan’s leaders knew the damage was so severe that the reactors could melt down, but they kept their knowledge secret for months…

The revelations were in documents released Friday, almost a year after the disaster. The minutes of the government’s crisis management meetings from March 11 — the day the earthquake and tsunami struck — until late December were not recorded and had to be reconstructed retroactively.

They illustrate the confusion, lack of information, delayed response and miscommunication among government, affected towns and plant officials, as some ministers expressed the sense that nobody was in charge when the plant conditions quickly deteriorated.

Read more: USA Today, March 9, 2012

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