DoD: Japan's tragedies 'epic'

Tuesday - 3/15/2011, 10:40am EDT

The Pentagon is calling the situation in Japan a tragedy on an epic scale. The U.S. has about 50,000 military personnel in Japan now. In an interview with MSNBC, Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell says there are about a dozen ships already there or on the way. Pentagon spokesman Marine Corps Col. Dave Lapan says that the USS Ronald Reagan is going to serve as a platform for helicopters from the Japan Self-defense Force, the Japanese coast guard and other civilian authorities. They're also flying relief missions, and delivered food and blankets. Lapan says no U.S. bases are in the danger zone for radioactivity, and that there are no plans to evacuate any U.S. personnel or their families.

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