Quotes - Kamikaze

I felt the moment of transition from life to death approaching me minute by minute. I gave up my effort to sleep and let my thoughts wander around. My short life of 21 years is going to switch to the world of death tommorrow. Some vague thoughts about my soul being enshrined in Yasukuni Shrine, about the incomprehensive world of death, and other thoughts came and went. I thought thee were more things I wanted to do in my life, but then I wasn't sure what it was that I wanted to do. I didn't know what, but I was certain there was still much that I had left to do here. I felt embarassed to realize that I was still so attached to life after all this time. What a coward! Shame on myself!

I would say to myself "So are you ready now?" and there was a self that would answer " Yes sir! I'm ready to go", but there was still another self who never stopped yelling "I don't want to die!"

Goro Nagamine, pilot of the H8K flying boat that flew as pathfinder for the Azusa Special Attack unit which struck the US fleet in the evening of March 11th, 1945, writes about his feelings the night before the mission.

Nishiki Daitei Kusenki , Goro Nagamine, ISBN4-7698-2215-4

To Masanori and Kiyoko,

Your father cannot be seen to your eyes, but he is always watching over you. Listen well to what mother tells you and don't make her worry. And when you grow up, take any profession you like, and become a respectable Japanese citizen. Don't be envious of your friends' daddies. Your Daddy, Masanori and Kiyoko, has become a god and is always watching you. You two study hard, and help your mother with her chores too. Masanori and Kiyoko, Daddy can't play horse with you anymore, but you two chum up and hang close to each other.

Your Daddy was a jolly fellow who got on board a big heavy bomber and wiped out the enemy. You two grow up and be as strong as Daddy, and please avenge my death.

From Father

To Masanori,Kiyoko

Lt. Col. Masanobu Kuno, Third Independent Kokutai, KIA 5/24/'45 at age 29
The will was written for his children, five and three years old.
Chiran Tokubetsu Kougekitai compiled by Kaoru Muranaga

I thought it was about time this would come up. Commander. This is what I suggest. The first ones to do the special attack will be the experineced pilots out of the Naval Academy. I will take command of the first mission. Please also tell the central staff so eager about the special attack that they can ride along to see what it's like. When all the chutai commaders are gone, then the buntai commanders will go. When all officers are gone, then Commander Genda, please yourself go. If you mean to let the Warrant Officers and the Petty Officers go first, I will never approve!

Lt.Commander Shiga, 343 Kokutai - upon learning that the central staff wanted a special attack unit be extractedfrom the 343 Kokutai.
Kaettekita Shiden-kai, Isamu Miyazaki, ISBN4-7698-0651-5

After the training was over, the three of us flew alongside the Yamato at an altitude lower than the bridge of the battleship in a single row. Our canopies were open and we bid farewell. Under normal circumstances, I would wave my hand, but that day, I gave a most sincere salute towards the bridge.

The apperance of the Yamato was completely different from the ship that I knew. It was covered with AA guns from bow to stern, as if all guns available in Japan had been collected and mounted. She was literally like a porcupine.

"Go Yamato!" ......The mightiest battleship in the world was going to leave for an one-way mission from which it would never come back, with a shipload of untrained crew. Cooperating as targets for its last gunnery training were a mere three Zeros. Nothing spoke of the status quo of the Japanese Empire than this fact.

Takeshi Umemura, Hikotai leader , 332 Kokutai , April 4th, 1945, after providing target from the AA crew of the Yamato who's never aimed at a moving target.

The sleek new heavy bomber had been transmutated into something grotesque. There was a long steel pole (detonation switch) that protruded from the nose, but at that time I was not sure what it was for. All the glass had been removed from the nose and the tail and covered with plywood. Most onboard equipment including bombing equipment, radio, co-pilot's seat, had been removed. There was no defensive armament. "So I'm going to fly into battle on this...." an empty feeling spread within my heart.

Seiji Moriyama, Fugaku Special Attack Unit, upon seeing the Ki-67 Hiryu bomber converted into To-Go suicide plane with two 800kg bombs.

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