Wings of Defeat

In our era of suicide bombings, Risa Morimoto's 2007 documentary on the Japanese kamikaze pilots of World War II is worthwhile viewing. The Japanese military turned to this desperation strategy when it was no longer capable of mounting conventional attacks, but fewer than one in a hundred planes reached their targets, and some 4,000 Japanese youths died trying to complete missions. Morimoto interviews surviving Japanese pilots and American victims, one of whom admits that U.S. fliers might have done the same were our shores threatened. In contrast to the image of do-or-die fanatics, many Japanese airmen were unhappy with their orders to fly into American ships and mourned their lost compatriots. 90 min.

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