View Full Version : Seppuku

3rd July 2002, 22:02
I was informed some time ago of a Japanses hournalist who took a group of people including a JSDF general hostage, apparently in a bid to restore the emporer to his full power, and somewhat of a return to the samurai days. It appears that his intent was to commit seppuku, and he did, but the member of his group that he chose to be his kaishaku was not trained properly and botched his duty to the point where the general had to step in and complete the job. I would like to resarch more of this but I have no names and do not know where to begin. This happened during the 60's.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Shane Layton

3rd July 2002, 22:05
I guess I think faster than I type. Should read journalist. Sorry

Shane Layton

David T Anderson
3rd July 2002, 22:51
It wasn't a journalist, but rather one of Japan's most famous modern novelists named Yukio Mishima. There was even a movie done about his life that includes his bizarre death, although how accurate it was I don't know. I don't think it was definitely established that the general stepped in as Mushima's second...

Neil Yamamoto
3rd July 2002, 23:23
Yukio Mishima, real name was Kimitaka Hiraoka, was the son of a government official. He was a shodan in karate, which style I don't recall, but he took part in the 13th all Japan Karate championships.

He was a prolific writer and there is a museum with a large number of his writings collected at The Lake Yamanakako Library Grove (Bungaku-no-mori)

On November 25,1970, Mishima and 4 members of the Shield Society(Tate no Kai)- Hiroyasu Koga Masayoshi Koga, Masakatsu Morita, and Masahiro Ogawa, went to the Ichigaya Headquarters of the Eastern Army. After attempting to read his manifesto and being ignored and mocked by the soliders, He attempts to committ seppuku at 12:15 in the office of General Kanetoshi Mashita His kaishaku, Morita tries 3 times to behead Mishima but fails. Hiroyasu Koga then takes the sword and beheads Mishima.

Morita then also attempts seppuku, but cuts too shallowly and he then signals to Koga, who beheads Morita.

If you want more information, there is a wealth of information available online due to the fascination with Mishima. I don't know why, but he's popular. Do a Google search and read up on the man and his life.

8th July 2002, 01:54
Thanks for the help. Now off to reasearch . . .

Shane Layton

Don Cunningham
8th July 2002, 12:45
Some more interesting and ironic Mishima facts. When called up for military service, the then sickly and weak Mishima faked the symptoms of tuberculosis to avoid the draft. It was later in life that he underwent a severe bodybuilding effort and completely changed himself. The drastic change was apparently enough to portray a yakuza hero in at least one major movie. His female co-star didn't care too much for his acting abilities or his abusive nature, though.

It was later in life that he became such a staunch right winger, even funding his own militant group and their training. Several like-minded officers in the JSDF also openly supported his efforts, even letting his militant group participate in some training exercises. Seems ironic since he opted out of military service during WWII, but was so vocally militaristic later.

John Lindsey
8th July 2002, 15:09
The current issue of Hiden magazine has a picture of Mishima attending what looks to be an early Bujinkan Taikai or demo. He is up on stage under a banner that mentions Togakure-ryu. I don't think Hatsumi was using the term Bujinkan in 1970, but instead using Togakure-ryu. I will scan a picture of this for everyone if they are interested.

9th July 2002, 07:09
Would love to see the pic. Did not know Mishima was associated with the Togakure ryu.

Shane Layton

9th July 2002, 13:12
Mishima was a very strange chap. A lot of Japanese don't have much time for him because they say he gives the world a very poor idea of the Japanese people - basically, he was a nut, no more representitive of how they think than - say - John Wayne's screen persona is a real America, or Hugh Grant is a real Englishman. I've known them get quite annoyed when he is mentioned.

Westerners tend to think much more highly of Mishima because his writing is bleak, stark and moody. One of my favourite quotes is:
"Even from my earliest days, I could never still my hearts longing for death and night and blood." He appeals to the same kind of audience as the Smiths. Having said that, it can be very good and I'd recommend anyone to read 'Confessions of a Mask'.

He regarded bodybuilding as an art form, and having started to age (as he saw it, 'decline in beauty') he chose a very memorable death, so that he would die at the peak of his abilities.

Just a shame those abilities didn't help him select a decent second to cut his head off - the one his picked was a novice kendoka (but very pretty) and the guy who eventually stepped forward to put him out of his misery held several Dan grades in Aiado and Kenjitsu. But that's artists for you.

9th July 2002, 14:55
Hi all

this is the photo i think John is talking about. It appears on Page 28 of July 2002 Hiden magazine. believe this has already been published in a book by Hatsumi Masaaki (Togakure Ryu Soke).