© Igor Kostin, April 1986, Chernobyl disaster, Ukraine

"A liquidator, clad in a gas mask and protective clothing, pushes a baby in a carriage who was found during the cleanup of the Chernobyl nuclear accident. The infant had been left in an abandoned house in the village of Tatsenki; the worker found the child when he was measuring radiation levels.

The village is inside the exclusion zone, an area within a 19-mile (30 kilometer) radius of Chernobyl that remains abandoned today. About 116,000 people were evacuated in the spring and summer of 1986, and 220,000 more were relocated in subsequent years.

The people who lived near the plant were not informed of the accident until days after the explosion. Only when radiation detectors were set off at nuclear power plants in Europe did the world begin to learn what had happened in northern Ukraine..” (+)

On April 26, 1986, Reactor #4 at the V. I. Lenin Nuclear Power Plant near Chernobyl exploded, releasing 400 times more radioactive matter than the bombing of Hiroshima. I was nearly 6 years old when this disaster happened. Back then I didn’t really understand what this was all about, the invisible danger, the radioactive cloud that was moving over Europe and Asia.

My parents didn’t let me and my brothers play outside too much. When it was raining we had to sit and wait until it stopped before we could leave the house again. We kids also weren’t allowed to eat any fruits and vegetables from the garden for months, and of course this totally sucked. I was scared as s*** in my little shoes. Though I had no idea about nuclear energy I knew that it’s something I hated.

I peppered my parents and grandparents with questions, like “Why are people building something like this when they know it’s so dangerous?” I can’t remember their answer.

Later I found an answer for myself:

Because humans are the most stupid, unscrupulous animals on this planet.