The following pilots are ordered to crash their planes directly into the side of an American bomber. Shomiko, Toshi, Sakae.. .»
«That’s me!» Sakae announced with a happy grin. «Finally, I’m going to die for my emperor.»
American and Japanese military forces had been at each other’s throats for four years. Hundreds of thousands of young men had joined the armies of both sides, eager to fight for their country and win the war.
As the worldwide conflict ground on, Japanese forces had begun using a rather desperate measure to stop the American advance. They ordered pilots to turn their airplanes into lethal missiles by ramming them at full speed directly into attacking bombers and ships. To the fliers, it was an opportunity to die for their much-loved emperor and enjoy the rich rewards waiting for them in the afterlife.
Sakae bounded to his plane, started the engine, and waited for the order to take off.
Suddenly the lineman ran to his plane and waved for him to stop the engine. «The war is over,» he called excitedly.
«Japan has surrendered. «Sakae groaned in disappointment and left his aircraft. Hard times followed. His house and family were gone, victims of American bombing. Then he met a young woman who happened to be a Christian. She introduced the bitter ex-pilot to the God of his enemy. In time he changed his allegiance from the emperor of Japan to the Emperor of heaven, attended a religious college, graduated, and then married the girl and spent the remainder of his life as a pastor in a church near Tokyo.