The Japanese pilot training program was very selective and rigorous, producing a high-quality and long-serving pilot corps, who ruled the air in the Pacific during early World War II. However, the long duration of the training program, combined with a shortage of gasoline for training, did not allow the Navy to rapidly provide qualified replacements in sufficient numbers.
The Kamikaze ("divine" or "spirit wind"), officially Tokubetsu Kōgekitai ("Special Attack Unit"), abbreviated as Tokkō Tai, and used as a verb as Tokkō ("special attack"), were suicide attacks by military aviators from the Empire of Japan against Allied naval vessels in the closing stages of the Pacific campaign of World War II, designed to destroy warships more effectively than was possible with conventional attacks. Kamikaze aircraft were essentially pilot-guided explosive missiles, purpose-built or converted from conventional aircraft. Pilots would attempt to crash their aircraft into enemy ships in what was called a "body attack" in planes laden with some combination of explosives, bombs, torpedoes and full fuel tanks; accuracy was much better than a conventional attack, the payload and explosion larger.
Scroll down to see preview pictures of DID 1/6th scale 'Miyazawa Kazuo' Imperial Japanese Navy Zero Fighter Pilot 12-inch figure (International Version). Pictures of the Special Edition version are posted at the end of this post. Click on the pictures for bigger and better views.
DID 1/6 'Miyazawa Kazuo' Imperial Japanese Navy Zero Fighter Pilot (International Version) FEATURES: Head sculpt, Shorter stature body, Hand assortment, Flight suit, Fur-lined flight cap, Aviation survival vest, Brown gloves, Goggles, Brown flight boots, White shirt, White scarf, Japanese Victory headband, Parachute harness, Wooden chair, Clip board with pen, Pocket watch, War flag, Type 14 Nambu pistol, Samurai sword with scabbard, Insignia, Small button hook. NOTE: airplane not included (display only).
Imperial Japanese Navy Zero Fighter Pilot (Special Edition) – This set is virtually identical to the international edition except that the head sculpt has facial hair. Due to DID only releasing three images of the sculpt with facial hair, all other pictures shown of the pilot are of the (non-facial hair) International Version. ONLY ONE HEAD SCULPT INCLUDED IN THIS SET.
December 7, 2008 – "Air Raid Pearl Harbor. This is no drill." BBI 1/6 scale World War II Japanese Zero Pilot "LT Sakae" 12-inch figure posted on my toy blog HERE
December 8, 2008 – Review of Dragon Models Limited (DML) 1/6th scale US Army Air Force P-40 Pilot “Lt George Taylor” 12-inch figure HERE
October 6, 2012 – 1/6th scale World War II Allied Forces Pilots and Air Crewman 12-inch action figures gathered together in one post HERE