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      Реферат - Who became kamikazee

           Рефераты по истории...


      By Kirill Bulatov
                                     course: Cultural Diversit in the Modern World
                                                            instructor: Leigh Rich
                               WHO BECAME KAMIKAZE PILOTS,
                           AND HOW DID THEY FEEL TOWARDS THEIR
                                    SUICIDE MISSION?
           This extended essay is about the Kamikaze pilots who made suicide
      attacks from the
           air during the Pacific War. This paper aims to find who the pilots
      really were and how
           they felt about their suicide mission. The hypothesis for the research
      was that any pilot
           could become a Kamikaze pilot, and that the pilots probably felt
      scared, yet took the
           responsibility to carry out their mission.
           Most of the investigations were made through primary sources. Since
      the Kamikaze
           attacks were made from bases in Kyushu, there are several museums
      there where
           information may be found. There, the actual letters and diaries that
      the pilots had left
           behind are displayed. Also, fifteen interviews with survivors of the
      attacks, relatives and
           other people related to the attacks were made. Since the Kamikaze
      attacks were made
           only fifty years ago, a great quantity of documents was available.
           The time period in concern is from early 1944 to 1945, and the topic
      being the
           Kamikaze pilots, and the region of research was within Japan, mainly
           The conclusion of this extended essay was that the pilots were
      ordinary, average young
           men of the time who volunteered, and that most felt that their dying
      in such a mission
           would improve the war situation for the Japanese. However, exactly how
      the pilots felt
           could not be fully understood by a student researching the topic fifty
      years after the
           actual attack.
                In blossom today, then scattered:
                Life is so like a delicate flower.
                How can one expect the fragrance
                To last for ever?
                --Admiral Onishi Takijiro
           During World War II in the Pacific, there were pilots of the Japanese
      Imperial Army
           and Navy who made suicide attacks, driving their planes to
      deliberately crash into
           carriers and battle- ships of the Allied forces. These were the pilots
      known as the
           Kamikaze pilots. This essay focuses on how they felt about their
      suicide mission.
           Because right-wing organizations have used the Kamikaze pilots as a
      symbol of a
           militaristic and extremely nationalistic Japan, the current Japanese
      respond to the issue
           with ignorance and false stereotypes and with generally negative and
           remarks. The aim of this essay is to reveal the often unknown truth
      concerning the
           pilots, and above all to give a clearer image as to who the pilots
      really were.
           The hypothesis behind the question, "Who were the Kamikaze pilots and
      how did they
           feel towards their suicide mission?" is that any pilot devoted to the
      country, who
           volunteered and was chosen felt scared, yet took the responsibility to
      carry out his
           Part One
           The death of Emperor Taisho may be the point when Japan had started to
      become the
           fascist state that it was during the Pacific War. Although the
      military had been active
           ever since the Jiji period (1867-1912) in wars such as the Sino-
      Japanese War
           (1894-1895), and the Russo-Japanese War (1904-1905), it became
      extremely active
           when Crown Prince Hirohito became Emperor Showa. Coup d'etats became
           and several political figures were assassinated. By Emperor Showa's
      reign, the military
           had the real authority.[1]
           According to those who have lived through the early Showa period (1926-
      1945), the
           presence of Emperor Showa was like that of a god and he was more of a
           figure than a political one.[2] In many of the haiku that the Kamikaze
      pilots wrote, the
           Emperor is mentioned in the first line.
           Systematic and organized education made such efficient "brainwashing"
      possible. In
           public schools, students were taught to die for the emperor. By late
      1944, a slogan of
           Jusshi Reisho meaning "Sacrifice life," was taught.[3]
           Most of the pilots who volunteered for the suicide attacks were those
      who were born
           late in the Taisho period (1912-1926) or in the first two or three
      years of Showa.
           Therefore, they had gone through the brainwashing education, and were
      products of
           the militaristic Japan.
           Censorship brought restrictions on the Japanese people. The letters,
      diaries, and
           photographs of individual soldiers were all censored. Nothing
      revealing where they
           were, or what they were doing concerning the military, could be
           Major restrictions were placed on the press, radio and other media.
      The public was not
           to be informed of defeats or damage on the Japanese side. Only
      victories and damage
           imposed on the Allies were to be announced.[5]
           Another factor that created the extreme atmosphere in Japan were the
      "Kenpeitai," a
           part of the Imperial Army which checked on the civilians to see if
      they were saying or
           doing anything against the Emperor or the military.[6]
           Since the time of feudalism, especially during the Tokugawa period, a
      warrior must
           follow the Bushido. This Code, and a culture which viewed suicide and
      the death of
           young people as beautiful were factors contributing to the mass
           Part Two
           Although it was only from 1944 that the General Staff had considered
           organized suicide attacks,[8] "suicide attacks" had been made since
      the Japanese
           attack on Pearl Harbor.[9] Two types of suicide attacks had been made.
      The first was
           an organized attack which would, in 90% of the cases, result in the
      death of the
           soldiers. However, if the plan had worked on the battlefield as it did
      in theory, there
           was some possibility that the soldiers would survive.[10] The other
      type of suicide
           attack that had been made was completely voluntary, and the result of
      a sudden
           decision. This was usually done by aircraft. The pilots, finding no
      efficient way to fight
           the American aircraft, deliberately crashed into them, and caused an
           destroying the American aircraft as well as killing themselves.[11]
           Because these voluntary suicide attacks had shown that the young
      pilots had the spirit
           of dying rather than being defeated, by February, 1944, the staff
      officers had started to
           believe that although they were way below the Americans in the number
      of aircraft,
           battleships, skillful pilots and soldiers, and in the amount of
      natural resources (oil, for
           example), they were above the Americans in the number of young men who
      would fight
           to the death rather than be defeated. By organizing the "Tokkotai,"
      they thought it
           would also attack the Americans psychologically, and make them lose
      their will to
           continue the war.[12] The person who suggested the Kamikaze attack at
      first is
           unknown, but it is often thought to be Admiral Takijiro Onishi.
      However, Onishi was in
           the position to command the first Shinpu Tokubetsu Kogekitai rather
      than suggest
           In October, 1944, the plans for the organized suicide attacks became
      reality. Having
           received permission from the Minister of the Navy, Admiral Onishi
      entered Clark Air
           Base prepared to command the first organized suicide attacks.[14]
      Onishi had not
           thought the organized suicide attacks to be an efficient tactic, but
      that they would be a
           powerful battle tactic, and he believed that it would be the best and
      most beautiful
           place for the pilots to die. Onishi once said, "if they (the young
      pilots) are on land, they
           would be bombed down, and if they are in the air, they would be shot
      down. That's
           sad...Too sad...To let the young men die beautifully, that's what
      Tokko is. To give
           beautiful death, that's called sympathy."[15]
           This statement makes sense, considering the relative skills of the
      pilots of the time. By
           1944, air raids were made all over Japan, especially in the cities.
      Most of the best
           pilots of the Navy and the Army had been lost in previous battles.
      Training time was
           greatly reduced to the minimum, or even less than was necessary in
      order to train a
           pilot. By the time the organized suicide attacks had started, the
      pilots only had the
           ability to fly, not to fight. Although what happens to the pilot
      himself in doing the suicide
           attack is by no means anywhere near beauty, to die in such a way, for
      the Emperor,
           and for the country, was (at the time), honorable.
           One thing that was decided upon by the General Staff was that the
      Kamikaze attacks
           were to be made only if it was in the will of the pilot himself. It
      was too much of a task
           to be "commanded."[16]
           The first organized suicide attack was made on October 21, 1944 by a
           called the Shinpu Tokubetsu Kogekitai.[17] Tokubetsu Kogekitai was the
           generally used in the Japanese Imperial Navy and Army. The public had
      known them
           as the Tokkotai, the abbreviated form. Tokkotai referred to all the
      organized suicide
           attacks. Shinpu is what is better known as Kamikaze.[18] The captain
      of the first
           attack was to be Captain Yukio Seki.[19]
           How was Captain Seki talked into such a task? According to the
      subcommander of the
           First Air Fleet, Tamai, who brought the issue up to Captain Seki, the
      Captain had in a
           short time replied "I understand. Please let me do it."[20] According
      to another source,
           the reply that Captain Seki gave was, "Please let me think about it
      one night. I will
           accept the offer tomorrow morning."[21]
           The document which seems to have the most credibility is the book, The
      Divine Wind
           by Captain Rikihei Inoguchi and Commander Tadashi Nakajima. According
      to this
           account a graduate of the Naval Academy, Naoshi Kanno, was originally
      nominated as
           the leader of this mission. However, he was away from Mabalacat on a
      mission to
           mainland Japan. Therefore, to take Kanno's place Captain Seki was
      chosen, and was
           called to Commander Tamai's room at midnight. After hearing of the
      mission, it
           appears, Seki remained silent for a while, then replied, "You must let
      me do it."[22]
           The reason this is the most credible document is because it had been
      written by
           Captain Rikihei Inoguchi, who was actually there with Tamai and Seki,
      and named the
           first unit, Shinpu. It is doubtful that there was a flaw in his memory
      since the book was
           published in 1959, only 14 years after the war.
           In any case, Captain Seki agreed to lead the first Kamikaze attack,
      and, on October
           25, 1944 during the battle off Samos, made one of the first attacks,
      on the American
           aircraft carrier Saint Lo.[23] Twenty-six fighter planes were
      prepared, of which half
           were to escort and the other half to make the suicide mission. That
      half was divided
           into the Shikishima, Yamato, Asahi and Yamazakura.[24]
           Part Three
           The youngest of the Kamikaze pilots of the Imperial Army was 17 years
      old,[25] and
           the oldest, 35.[26] Most of them were in their late teens, or early
      twenties. As the
           battle in Okinawa [April to June 1945] worsened, the average age of
      the pilots got
           younger. Some had only completed the equivalent of an elementary
      school and middle
           school combined. Some had been to college. There was a tendency for
      them not to be
           first sons. The eldest sons usually took over the family business.
      Most were therefore
           the younger sons who did not need to worry about the family business.
           Most of those who had come from college came in what is called the
           Shutsujin. This was when the college students' exemption from being
      drafted into the
           military was lifted, and the graduation of the seniors was shifted
      from April 1944 to
           September 1943.[27]
           Many of these students were from prestigious colleges such as Tokyo,
      Kyoto, Keio,
           and Waseda Universities. These students from college tended to have
      more liberal
           ideas, not having been educated in military schools, and also were
      more aware of the
           world outside of Japan.
           Where were the pilots trained? All the pilots involved in the "Okinawa
      Tokko" had
           been trained in/as one of the following: The Youth Pilot Training
      School, Candidates for
           Second Lieutenant, The Imperial Army Air Corps Academy, Pilot Trainee,
           Officer Candidates, Special Flight Officer Probationary Cadet, Pilot
      Training Schools,
           or Special Flight Officer Candidate.[28]
           Part Four
           Since the Kamikaze attacks were to be made only if the pilots had
      volunteered, and
           could not be "commanded," there were two methods to collect
      volunteers. One was for
           all pilots in general, and another was for the Special Flight Officer
      Probationary Cadet
           (College graduates) only. The former was an application form, and the
      latter was a
           survey. The survey asked: "Do you desire earnestly/wish/do not wish/to
      be involved in
           the Kamikaze attacks?" They had to circle one of the three choices, or
      leave the paper
           blank. The important fact is that the pilots were required to sign
      their names.[29] When
           the military had the absolute power, and the whole atmosphere of Japan
      expected men
           to die for the country, there was great psychological pressure to
      circle "earnestly
           desire" or "wish." The Army selected those who had circled "earnestly
      desire." The
           reason that the Special Flight Officer Probationary Cadet had to
      answer such a survey
           rather than send the applications at their own will was probably
      because the military
           had known that the students who had come from college had a wider
      vision, and would
           not easily apply for such a mission. For the regular application, the
      Army was confident
           that there would be many young pilots who would apply. They were
      correct. Every
           student of the 15th term of the Youth Pilot Training School had
      applied. Because there
           were so many volunteers, the military had decided to let the ones with
      better grades go
           There are several factors which made so many young pilots volunteer
      for such a
           mission. Extreme patriotism must have been one factor for sure. Added
      to that, there
           was the reverence for the Emperor, a god. Some say that it was
      generally believed that
           if one died for the emperor, and was praised in Yasukuni Shrine, they
      would become
           happy forever.[31]
           The effect of the brainwashing that the military had done to the
      students is surprising.
           The pilots felt it was "obvious" that they were to take part in the
      Kamikaze attacks.
           Most pilots mention in letters that they were happy, and proud of
      being given such an
           honorable mission. It is true also that they believed that if they
      took part in the mission,
           it might improve the war situation for Japan.[32]
           What the military education was like was described in a diary kept by
      Corporal Yukio
           Araki, from the time he had entered the Youth Pilot Training School,
      until the night
           before his original date of departure for Okinawa.
           Since anything written was checked by one of the military staff,
      nothing that would
           upset the military or contradict the ideas of the Japanese government
      could be written.
           However, more importantly, because of the lack of privacy, personal
      emotions could
           not be written. Therefore, in Corporal Araki's diary, very rarely can
      anything "personal"
           be found. The first several days in the Training school, he simply
      lists the subjects that
           were studied that day, and what was done for physical training. Later
      on he mentions
           what was done for training, the events that took place, and other
      things he had done.
           However, most of what he wrote was about the "warning" he
      received.[33] The
           following are some of the "warnings" he had received:
                There is an attitude problem when listening to the officers.[34]
                Some students seem to smile or laugh during training, and others
      are being
                lazy...In general there seems to be a lack of spirit.[35]
                Straighten yourself. It reveals your spirit.[36]
           The education emphasized the mind, spirit and attitude. Neatness and
      cleanliness were
           also frequently mentioned. Usually, a hard slap in the face
      accompanied these warnings.
           The way the 15-year- old boy responded to the warning was: "I must try
           One of the listed subjects in the diary was a course called "Spiritual
      Moral Lecture,"
           nearly every other day. What exactly was taught in the course is not
           However it seemed that in some of these courses, great military
      figures who died for
           Japan were mentioned.[38] It is a certainty that this course was one
      factor in making
           the pilots feel "happy and proud" to be involved in the Kamikaze
           The military education was quickly absorbed by these young pilots-to-
      be. It was in
           October 1943 that the young boy had entered the Training School. By
      the next
           February, he had written a short poem saying that a Japanese man
      should be praised
           when he dies as he should for the Emperor.[39]
           The amount of time students spent in the Youth Pilot Training School
      was reduced from
           three years to less than two years for the 15th term students.
      Therefore, the schedule
           was tight and tough.[40] There was almost no holiday at all, and many
      of the planned
           holidays were canceled.[41] What Corporal Araki called a "holiday" was
      very much
           different from what is normally considered a holiday. An example of
      his holiday started
           with some sort of ceremony, followed by listening and learning new
      songs (probably of
           war), and watching a movie. Something related to the military was
      taught even on days
           called "holidays."[42] Therefore, they were given no time to "think."
      There was
           something to do almost every minute that they were awake, and they
      were taught what
           the right spirit was. By not giving them time to think, they had no
      time to evaluate what
           they were being taught. They just absorbed it, and as a result, by the
      time they
           graduated, they were brainwashed.
           Corporal Araki had an older brother and three younger brothers. In his
      will to his
           parents, he mentioned that he wished two of his younger brothers to
      also enter the
           military; one should enter the Navy and become an officer, the other
      to enter the Army
           and also become an officer. He also mentions that he wishes that his
      brothers follow his
           path (and be involved in the Kamikaze attacks).[43]
           Mr. S. Araki, Corporal Araki's older brother, mentioned that his
      brother had greatly
           changed after entering the military school. He remembers that his
      brother's attitude
           towards him was not casual, and it was not like he was talking to a
      brother. He felt that
           he had really grown up since he had seen him last, both physically and
           There are three references in which Corporal Araki's thoughts towards
      the mission may
           be found: his will, last letters, and his diary. In his will to his
      parents, and to his brother,
           he mentions that he has no nostalgic sentiments. In his will addressed
      to his brother, he
           mentions that he would like him to consider the mission as piety. In a
      postcard sent on
           the day of his mission, he calls the mission, "an honorable mission,"
      and that he is
           looking forward to see them again at Yasukuni Shrine.[45] It was in
      the end of March
           1945, that Corporal Araki's unit's mission was ordered to take
      place.[46] From just
           before then, Corporal Araki had not written in his diary. After an
      entry on March 16,
           there were no entries for two months. He wrote, because he was busy,
      there was no
           time to write.[47] Could that be true? Indeed, his squadron was on a
      tight schedule for
           March. From the 25th, they returned from P'yongyang to Gifu
           However, Sergeant Kazuo Arai had been able to keep a diary at the
      time.[49] It may
           be because of strong personal emotions he just could not keep the
      diary. Or, it may be
           that he could care no longer about keeping a diary. In either case the
      fact that he had
           not written an entry on the day that the mission was officially
      ordered, when he had
           written every other special event down, reveals that he was no longer
      in the state of
           mind that he had been.
           The planned date of the mission of the 72nd Shinbu squadron (which was
      the squadron
           to which Corporal Araki belonged) was initially, May 21, 1945.
      However, because of
           rainy weather, it was postponed to May 27, 1945. In his last diary
      entry on May 20,
           1945, he wrote:[50]
                ...at ** o'clock I received the thankful command to depart
      tomorrow. I
                am deeply emotional, and just hope to sink one (American
                Already, hundreds of visitors had visited us. Cheerfully singing
      the last
                season of farewell.[51]
           and is cut off there. His handwriting however was very stable, and was
      not as if he was
           losing control. If for some reason he had to leave the diary for a
      while, why did he not
           go back to it? Was it that he had become extremely emotional that he
      could no longer
           write? In any case, he never returned to his diary.
           Part Five
           In reading the last letters of the Kamikaze pilots, there are
      generally two types. One,
           the "Typical" letters and the other, the "Unique" letters. Most of the
      typical letters were
           written by graduates of military schools such as the Youth Pilot
      Training School. The
           "Unique" ones were written by the Special Flight Officer Probationary
           graduates from college. The first two of the following five pilots
      have written a typical
           letter, and the other three have written unique letters.
           Corporal Masato Hisanaga of the 72nd Shinbu Squadron was twenty years
      old. In his
           letter, he thanked his parents for the years that he was alive, and
      reported to them how
           he had been doing, and informed them of the kindness of the people
      where he had
           been. After asking his parents to say "Hi" to various people, he says
      that he will take
           revenge for his older brother (who, as it appears, must have been
      killed in the war) by
           sinking the enemy's battleship and killing its soldiers. He too asks
      that his younger
           brothers follow their brother (himself). "All of the (Japanese)
      population is the
           tokkotai." He too mentioned, "I have no nostalgic sentiments."[52]
           Corporal Shinji Ozeki, 19 years old wrote a will to his mother
                As a man I will courageously go. Now, I have no special nostalgic
                sentiments. However, I will go regretting that although being
      born a man, I
                have not had filial piety.
                To give this young self for the protection of the imperial
      nation, I believe is
                I hope that you will forgive my sin of being undutiful and that
      you will live
                in happiness.[54]
           This is similar to what Corporal Araki and Hisanaga had mentioned. All
      reveal their
           thoughts towards their parents. They believed their dying was piety,
      which shows that
           they were doing it for their family. All had mentioned having no
      nostalgic sentiments
           possibly to make their parents feel easier. Because these are
      "Typical" letters, many
           others had written just as they had.
           The unique ones written by the college graduates included more
      personal feelings. For
           example, Second Lieutenant Shigeyuki Suzuki wrote:[55]
                People say that our feeling is of resignation, but that does not
      know at all
                how we feel, and think of us as a fish about to be cooked.
                Young blood does flow in us.
                There are persons we love, we think of, and many unforgettable
                memories. However, with those, we cannot win the war.
                To let this beautiful Japan keep growing, to be released from the
                hands of the Americans and British, and to build a 'freed Asia'
      was our
                goal from the Gakuto Shutsujin year before last; yet nothing has
                The great day that we can directly be in contact with the battle
      is our day
                of happiness and at the same time, the memorial of our
           Second Lieutenant Ryoji Uehara, a graduate of Keio University was 22
      years old. His
           ideas were "radical" for the time, and if known by the Kenpeitai, he
      would not have
           been left alone.[57] In a note, he wrote to a journalist just before
      his mission that he
           was greatly honored to be chosen as a Kamikaze pilot.[58 ]Yet he also
      wrote, thinking
           logically with the skills he had gained in college. He believed in
      democracy. He believed
           that the victory of democracy was obvious, and although fascism would
      make the
           country appear to be prosperous temporarily, only decline would wait
      for it. He
           mentioned the fact that Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany had been
      defeated, and that the
           power of "Freedom" will appear in history. He says that if his ideas
      were correct, it
           would be a tragedy for the nation but that he would be happy. In the
      end of the note he
                Tomorrow, one believer in democracy will leave this world. He may
                lonely, but his heart is filled with satisfaction.
           Second Lieutenant Uehara believed that he would not go to Yasukuni
      Shrine, but go to
           heaven where he would be able to meet his brother and the girl he
      loved, who died
           Second Lieutenant Toshio Anazawa was engaged. Yet being chosen for
      such a mission
           that [engagement] was to be canceled. He wrote in his last letter to
      her all the
           thankfulness he felt for her and her family. He tells her that he does
      not want her to
           reflect on the time they had spent together.[60] He wrote:
                As an engaged man, as a man to go, I would like to say a little
      to you, a
                lady before I go.
                I only wish your happiness.
                Do not mind the past. You are not to live in the past.
                Have the courage and forget the past. You are to create a new
                You are to live from moment to moment in the reality. Anazawa no
                exists in the reality.[61]
           Unlike the first two letters, which contained the words, "I have no
      nostalgic emotions,"
           he wrote: "It's too late now, but I would like to say some of my
           He then listed the books he wanted to read, what he wanted to see,
      what he wanted to
           listen to, and that he was eager to see her, and to talk to her.[62]
           The last three writings probably spoke for themselves and require no
           explanation. They just made clearer the different ways of thought the
      college students
           had from the others who attended military school.
           Not only in writing had the thoughts of the pilots appeared. In
      actions, and in speeches
           too were the emotions visible. Corporal Mineyoshi Takahashi, according
      to Mr. Yasuo
           Takahashi, his older brother, had changed since entering military
      school, and his
           attitude in talking with Mr. Takahashi was not as it used to be.[63]
      (The way Mr. Y.
           Takahashi explained the differences before and after Mineyoshi joined
      the military was
           similar to the way Mr. S. Araki had explained Yukio's changes.) He
      remembers that
           the last time they met, he took Corporal Takahashi into the ship he
      was working in.
           Suddenly, Corporal Takahashi had asked his brother: "Which part of the
      ship is the
           weakest?" Mr. Takahashi remembers that he was extremely surprised, but
      pointed to
           the place which he knew was the weakest.[64]
           This reveals that Corporal Takahashi was thinking of his mission
      rather calmly. He had
           asked the question, probably thinking of which part of the ship he
      should drive his plane
           Corporal Takamasa Senda before his departure had been singing many
      songs with
           children, and at times, sat quietly alone, burning old letters in an
      expression of deep
           thought. The last night, he looked up at the stars and said, "You are
      lucky, this will be
           the last time I see the stars...I wonder how my mother is
      doing...."[66] His singing with
           the children was probably to forget the coming mission, and his
      burning the letters was
           to forget the past. Saying that he wanted to be able to see the stars
      again is an
           indication that he wanted to live.
           Whether patriotism was the answer to the way they felt can be doubted
      in the case of
           Second Lieutenant Fumihiro Mitsuyama. His real name was Tak Kyong-
           He was Korean, but like other Japanese men, he too was sent to war,
      and was chosen
           as a Kamikaze pilot. The last evening before his mission, he went to
      the cafeteria
           appointed by the Army, which was run by a lady, Mrs. Tome Torihama,
      who was
           called "Okasan" (mother) by the young Kamikaze pilots of Chiran Air
      Base. He went
           up to her and said, "I will sing you a song of my country," and sang
      Ariran. By the
           second verse he was in tears.[68] Because he was a graduate of
      college, he had not
           volunteered willingly but was probably pressured to circle "desire
      earnestly" in the
           survey, especially being a Korean.
           According to survivors, all say that they felt quite calm, and normal.
      They were not
           scared of death but were happy that the day had finally come.[69] Mr.
      Itatsu was a
           pilot who had departed for the mission but because his engine had
      stopped on the way,
           his plane fell into the sea, and he survived.[70] He says that he
      remembers being happy
           when he was chosen for the mission.[71] He said that the young people
      then who had
           gone into military schools did not have the ability to think
      logically, and therefore sent
           applications without much thought. He also says that these pilots were
      really innocent,
           and thought purely that they would be able to serve, and protect the
      country.[72] An
           author and a critic, Tadao Morimoto said in a T.V. program that he
      believes that it was
           not true that they were happy to die for the country.[73] Mr. Itatsu
      says that he
           disagrees with him because some young and innocent pilots died
      believing they could
           become happy dying that way.[74] Since Mr. Itatsu was one of the
      Kamikaze pilots
           himself, his comments should be given more credibility than the
      comments made by
           Tadao Morimoto who had been an officer in the Navy during the war, but
      was not
           involved with the Kamikaze attacks himself.
           Kiichi Matsuura, the author of the book Showa wa Toku (Showa Far Away)
           that he recalls the first planned date of the mission was like every
      other day, and no
           special conversation took place. When he found that his aircraft would
      not function
           properly, he suddenly felt the strong urge to live. His aircraft not
      functioning implied that
           he would not die. Realizing that, he could only think of living. On
      his second "chance"
           his plane was fine halfway. He was with two other pilots, and seeing
      one of them sink
           into the sea, realized a problem in all their engines. The two
      returned. He recalls that
           until the moment they decided to return, he was not at all scared,
      because they were
           flying toward death. However, returning was frightening. He had to
      protect his life from
           Finally, in an interview with a member of the Self Defense Force, Mr.
      Matsunaga, a
           word which held the key to a better understanding was mentioned. The
      word was
           "decision." To the question, "If something happened, would you not be
      afraid?" he
           answered that it was his decision to enter such a world, and that he
      would not escape if
           anything did occur.[76] Similarly, although it was with far more
      psychological pressure,
           all the Kamikaze pilots had made the decision.
           The pilots were, as a matter of fact, not radical nor extremely
      patriotic, but were the
           average Japanese of the time. It was a dream for the young boys of
      late Taisho period
           and early Showa to serve in the military, especially in the Air Force,
      as a career. Not all
           pilots who wanted to become Kamikaze pilots could become one. Although
      this may
           sound strange, there were so many volunteers to make the suicidal and
      fatal attacks,
           that the military, to be fair, had to let the ones with the better
      grades go earlier. Because
           of the aura that had covered Japan, the young pilots of 18 and 19 were
      eager to go.
           Those of the Special Flight Officer Probationary Cadets who had their
      own thoughts
           like Second lieutenants Suzuki, Uehara, and Anazawa were able to
      separate their
           personal life from what was required of them to do for the war. They
      felt the
           responsibility to go.
           How exactly the pilots felt about the attacks could not be known but
      it seems that they
           were, in general, happy that they could serve the country, but had
      other thoughts
           towards death. Because the brainwashing done on the pilots trained in
      military schools
           was so effective, it changed the priority of 'life, then country,' the
      other way around.
           Life was made, by the atmosphere and education of the time, to be not
      the first priority,
           but something that must be given up for the first priority, the
      Emperor and the country.
           If they believed that ever-lasting happiness would follow their
      mission, there was
           nothing for them to fear. Those who were not brainwashed (the college
      graduates) may
           have felt fear. If they were able to detach themselves totally from
      life, they might have
           felt better. Yet is detaching oneself from life really possible?
           In any case, it seems that they were all optimistic. They volunteered,
      believing their
           death might save their family, the ones they loved, and Japan.
      However, as a student
           investigating fifty years after the events, it was not possible for me
      to understand exactly
           how the pilots had felt towards their mission.
           Appendix One
           The Different Pilots' Training Schools in The Imperial Army Where the
      Kamikaze Pilots
           Were Trained
           The Youth Pilot Training School
                The students who had graduated from the Youth Pilot Training
      schools had the
                best flying skills of the Imperial Army. This schooling system
      had begun in 1933,
                and lasted until the end of the Pacific War. The age range that
      was accepted into
                this school was between 14 and 17. Originally, the time spent in
      the school was
                three years. One year of general education in Tokyo and two years
                specialized education in various parts of Japan. However, by the
      end of the war,
                the students of the 15th term were trained in only a year and 8
      months and were
                made into soldiers just in time for the Okinawa Tokko.
           Candidates for Second Lieutenant
                Non-commissioned officers whose excellence was recognized were
      educated in
                the Air Corps Academy. Because of their experience and career,
      their skill was
                of a high level.
           Imperial Army Air Corps Academy
                Students who had completed the four-year course of Middle School
      or the
                Higher Elementary School took an examination to enter. They
      became civil
                servants who had decided to work in the Army. Graduates of the
      56th and 57th
                term were involved in the Okinawa Tokko.
           Pilot Trainee
                The pilot trainees had to have a pilot's license, and had to be
      an Officer
                Candidate. After one month in a squadron, they received six
      months of flight
                training in the Imperial Army Air Corps Academy of Kumagaya, and
      after six
                months as probationary Officer, became Second Lieutenants. Among
                students of the Ninth term, there were graduates of the Higher
      Pilot training
           Flight Officer Candidates
                Officer candidates consisted of drafted men with at least Middle
                education. After four months of preliminary education, a test was
      taken. If they
                passed the test, they received the required education for
      officers, and if found fit
                for the position were ranked as Higher Officer Candidates. After
      serving as
                probationary officers, they were ranked as Second Lieutenants. If
      they were not
                found fit as an officer, they became the Lower Officer Candidates
      and became
                non-commissioned officers. Those who had the interest in flying
      received training
                with the Special Flight Officer Probationary Cadet in the
      Imperial Air Corps
                Academy. The students of the 7th, 8th, and 9th term were involved
      in the
                Okinawa Tokko.
           Special Flight Officer Probationary Cadets
                This was for the college students drafted into the war by the
      Gakuto Shutsujin
                who were interested in the Air Corps. The 1st term entered in
      October 1943,
                the 2nd in December 1943, and the 3rd in June 1944. They were
      made into
                Second Lieutenants in one year, half a year earlier than planned.
      One sixth of the
                entire Okinawa Tokko of the Army was made up of these 312 cadets.
           Pilot Training Schools
                This was not an institution belonging to the Army, but belonged
      to the Ministry of
                Communications. However, the content was almost the same. There
                twelve of these schools and the students were separated into the
      regular course
                and flight training course. Students of fourteen to fifteen years
      old entered the
                regular course. After three years of regular education, the
      students received one
                year of flight training which the students of the flight training
      course had
                completed. To enter the flight training school from the
      beginning, an educational
                background of more than Middle School graduation was required.
      108 of the
                graduates died in the Okinawa Tokko.
           Appendix Two
           The 72nd Shinbu Squadron
           Many of the Kamikaze pilots mentioned in the Essay were pilots of the
      72nd Shinbu-tai
           of the Imperial Army. The following are pilots of the squadron:
                Title             Name                    Age at Departure
                First Lieutenant  Mutsuo Sato             24
                Sergeant          Nobuyoshi Nishikawa
                Sergeant          Kazuo Arai              21
                Corporal          Yukio Araki             17
                Corporal          Tsutomu Hayakawa        19
                Corporal          Kairyu Kanamoto
                Corporal          Atsunobu Sasaki
                Corporal          Kaname Takahashi        18
                Corporal          Mineyoshi Takahashi     17
                Corporal          Masato Hisanaga         20
                Corporal          Toshio Chizaki          19
                Corporal          Takamasa Senda          19
           This squadron was formed on January 30, 1945 as the 113 Educational
      Flight Corps,
           then was transformed to the 23rd Rensei Flight Corps. On March 30,
      1945, the same
           unit was renamed the 72nd Shinbu Squadron. (Shinbu refers to the
      squadrons of the
           Imperial Army which made the suicide attacks by aircraft.) They were
      stationed in
           Heijo, what is now P'yongyan of North Korea. From March 25, 1944, they
      were in
           Kagamihara, Gifu prefecture for about one month. Before the mission in
      May, the unit
           returned to Kyushu, and stayed in Metabaru, for a few days, and flew
      over to Bansei
           Air Base. Their attack was first planned to be made on May 20, 1945,
      however it was
           postponed to May 27, 1945 due to rainy weather.
           Of the twelve pilots, three did not depart for the suicide attack.
      Corporal Atsunobu
           Sasaki was killed by an American P-51 on May 2, 1945 in China. On the
      same day,
           Sergeant Nobuyoshi Nishikawa was injured, and could not take part in
      the mission.
           The aircraft of Kairyu Kanamoto malfunctioned on the day of their
      mission, and could
           not take off. The remaining nine made their mission from Bansei Air
      Base at 6:00 a.m.,
           May 27, 1945.
           Appendix Three
           The Research Method
           The first time I learned of this topic was in August, 1992.  It was
      the time when I went
           with my parents to Japan and visited manmuseums and talked to many
      people whose
           age varied from12 to 60 and they have told me many stories about war.
           There, a great number of primary sources and photographs were
      displayed, which
           made me even more interested in the topic.
           Since the summer of 1992, the collection of information started, with
      no academic
           purpose. In 1993, the book Rikugun Saigo no Tokko Kichi by Shichiro
           was published. This book was about the Kamikaze pilots who departed
      from Bansei
           Air Base.
           That summer of 1993 was crucial to my interest in the Kamikaze pilots.
      First, I visited
           Chiran Tokko Heiwa Kaikan again on August 21, and looked in more
      detail at the
           letters, diaries and photographs of the pilots. The photographs were
      extremely inspiring
           in a sense, since in none of them were the pilots showing an
      expression of fatigue, or
           regret. Most of them were smiling.
           On the same night, I decided to spend the evening at "Tomiya Ryokan"
      which is what
           used to be the small restaurant Ms. Tome Torihama ran during the war,
      and which the
           Kamikaze pilots used frequently. There were several photographs of the
           pilots remaining there. Mr. Yoshikiyo Torihama, the grandson of Ms.
      Tome Torihama,
           talked to me about many episodes concerning the last evening the
      pilots visited the
           Since May 1993 I thought it would be a wonderful opportunity to
      organize my thoughts
           and information on this topic.
          This essay was extremely interesting and, above all, meaningful for me.
           members of the older generation who I interviewed encouraged and
      supported me
           Appendix Four
           The following are those who have supported and encouraged my research
      for the
           Extended Essay: (in alphabetical order)
                Mr. Seiichi Araki
                Mr. Tadamasa Itatsu
                Ms. Itsuko Kai
                Mrs. Masako Kai
                Mr. Kyoichi Kamei
                Mrs. Fusako Manabe
                Mr. Ryo Matsunaga
                Mr. Shiniro Nagao
                Mr. Tadashi Nakajima
                Mr. Glenn Scoggins
                Mr. Tohshio Senda
                Mr. Yasuo Takahashi
                Mr. Yoshikiyo Torihama
                Mr. Akira Yamami