Air War Stories -
Dell Publishing, February 1966, No. 6, 36 pages
This 1966 comic book has a short eight-page story on the first kamikaze
attack, which occurred in the Philippines on October 25, 1944. The story ends
with a November kamikaze attack by Yoshuri Ashnishi, a young Navy pilot honored
to die for the glory of the Emperor. He fails when American gunners shoot his
plane down, but he later will give thanks for his failure when the war ends.
This short comic story generally sticks to historical facts. For example, the
comic depicts the rapid sinking of an escort carrier, the St. Lo, in the
first kamikaze attack. The story also correctly states that each of the first
five kamikaze planes found a target.
Some parts of the story are not correct. For example, Navy pilot Ashnishi in
the comic graduated from Hiro Air Base, an Army air base in the popular
book entitled Kamikaze published in
another example of historical error, Ashnishi attacks a ship in Lingayen Gulf in
November 1944, but the kamikaze attacks there did not really occur until January
1945. Also, the actual first kamikaze attack in October included four escort
planes for the five kamikaze Zeros, but the story does not mention these
The last frame of the comic gives an unrealistic image. An American destroyer
sends a small boat out to save Ashnishi in the water. Such compassion toward the
enemy did not happen in actual kamikaze attacks. Also, no kamikaze pilot is
known to have survived after crashing in the midst of American ships.