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Kamikaze Pilot Statue
Yasukuni Jinja Yushukan, Tokyo

This bronze statue of a kamikaze pilot stands to the left of the main entrance to the Yushukan, founded in 1882 as the museum at Yasukuni Jinja (Shrine). The inscription at the base of the statue reads "tokkou yuushi no zou" (statue of special attack hero).

Many kamikaze pilots told their comrades they would meet at Yasukuni Jinja, the place of enshrinement for spirits of Japan's war dead.

The Yushukan has several exhibits dedicated to special attack corps members, not only those who made suicide attacks with planes but also other types of weapons such as ohka (manned rocket-powered glider), shinyo (explosive motorboat), and kaiten (manned torpedo).

In 2005, the Tokkotai (Special Attack Corps) Commemoration Peace Memorial Association placed a plaque to the left of the kamikaze pilot statue that has stood for many years in front of the Yushukan. Following is an English translation of the plaque:

Praise for Special Attack Heroes

In the last stage of the Greater East Asia War when the war situation increasingly worsened, a total of 5,843 men in the Army and Navy gave their lives by bravely plunging into enemy warships and making other types of attacks. These men who became the cornerstone of today's prosperity included:

  • 1,344 men of the Army Air Corps headed by Major Nishio
  • 88 men of the Giretsu Airborne Unit headed by Major Okuyama
  • 9 men of the Tank Corps headed by Warrant Officer Funaba
  • 266 men of the Offshore Advance Force headed by Major Okabe
  • 2,514 men of the Naval Air Corps headed by Lieutenant Seki
  • 436 men of the Special Submarine Force headed by Lieutenant Iwasa
  • 104 men of the Kaiten Corps headed by Lieutenant Kamibeppu
  • 1,082 men of the Shinyo Corps headed by Lieutenant Ishikawa

These totally pure and noble spirits who gave their lives for our country should each be honored and remembered by our nation, and their stories should forever be passed on to future generations.

June 28, 2005

Tokkotai Commemoration Peace Memorial Association

In June 2006, one year after the erection of the plaque, the Tokkotai Commemoration Peace Memorial Association announced that the men on the battleship Yamato who died when the ship was sunk by American aircraft during a special attack mission toward Okinawa on April 7, 1945, would also be included on their official list of men who died in special attacks.