OSHIMA -- Five months after the disaster, the small island of Oshima continues to paint a picture of total devastation. The island's small port is desolate. The almost completely submerged docks are barely visible above the water. Two heavy ferry boats rest on the shore, where they were tossed up by the tsunami. The roofs of wrecked houses are nearly hidden under mounds of rubble.
The island is 30 minutes away by boat from the port of Kesennuma, northeast of another island called Hunshu, which fared far better during Japan's monster March 11 earthquake and tsunami. That's because Oshima served as a kind of shield for Hunshu, taking the full blast of the sea. But like so many other islands in the Tohoku region and in other isolated areas of Japan, Oshima seems to have been forgotten by Japanese authorities.