CNN Exclusive "Ninja History 101"
Morning coffee, bagel...and ninjas on CNN? What a fine way to start a morning.
You Don’t Know Ninjas: 8 New Revelations About the Shadow Warrior
There are some really interesting items in this article, like this print from the 19th century (1853) showing a ninjer.
Ninjas are everywhere in our popular culture—they slice up mobsters in movies and fruits on your iPhone. We seem to think it makes sense to compare them to pirates
and then think of them fondly as adolescent mutant turtles living in a New York sewer with a kimono-clad rat.
But who are the ninja, really? That’s what John Man, a British travel writer and historian, set out to explore in his new book Ninja: 1,000 Years of the Shadow Warrior.
He spoke to TIME about the fighters behind the legend.
...or that a James Bond movie (according to the historian) really started the "ninja boom" in the West...
I'd love to see some bullies with more experience in Japanese martial history to see if they can poke holes in this TIME interview/CNN article...I don't know, it seems pretty well sourced.
The Bond movie You Only Live Twice
really popularized the idea of ninja among people who are not interested in martial arts.
John Man, an expert on Asian history with REAL credentials as a professional historian, digging into the history of Ninjas??
And not a single mention of the Booj in nine pages????
This can only get better, and I think I have a new book to pick up.
Last edited by W. Rabbit; 2/05/2013 10:25am at .
I think he's talking about Hatsumi and the Booj here: "There are masters still in existence who claim to have scrolls that go back to the Middle Ages granting them all sorts of authenticity down the generations, but nobody has seen these scrolls or proved anything about them."
I'm sure Hatsumi is furious.
Originally Posted by xstyle
It's only been a few years since Hatsumi had a big CNN exclusive about being the "last ninja", and this historian instead credits a spy-soldier who hid in the jungle for 30 years as being the "Last Ninja".
Hiroo Onoda, a former Intelligence Officer in Japan's Imperial Army, hid in the Philippine Jungle for 30 years.
Last edited by W. Rabbit; 2/05/2013 11:41am at .
Here is the Baddass of the Week entry on Onada.
This is a REAL fucking ninja:
Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda of the Japanese Imperial Army's Intelligence Division was sent to the Philippine Island of Lubang in 1944 with a top-secret mission - to stay out of sight, collect information on Allied troop movements on the island, launch guerilla attacks, disrupt the enemy and generally just be completely fucking nuts.
He took this mission so seriously that he ended up fighting for his life well after everyone else had called it a day and went home. If the delicate line between insanity and badassitude is measured by determination, then Lt. Hiroo is probably high in the running for being one of the most badassed men of World War II.
They survived on rice, coconuts and bananas foraged from the underbrush, and occasionally made daring night raids into town to steal beer and other supplies from peoples' outdoor fridges.
Thanks, Wabbit. I saw this yesterday morning too and it made me smile.
I have not read his book yet, but it is on my list. I get the impression from the excerpts I've read and the interview that he exercises more of the "travel writer" than "historian" in this book. There's nothing wrong with that, and hopefully it will be an enjoyable read. I also got an opportunity to skim through the bibliography for this book and I was surprised to see so many Antony Cummins books. I guess in this field it's trading one bad English language source for another.
Originally Posted by W. Rabbit
Oh, I forgot I wanted to say something about this too.
So there's no disputing Onoda's badassery, and apparently he was a graduate of some sort from the Nakano Spy School, but that doesn't make him a "ninja" any more than a CIA officer is a "ninja."
I've got a couple of books on the Japanese espionage efforts during World War II, including one specifically on the Nakano School, and (big surprise...) there's no Ninjutsu Ryuha in sight anywhere. In fact, it appears the Nakano School was a deliberate effort to introduce Western concepts of military intelligence into the Japanese military -- not retread any traditional Japanese methods.
I would not consider myself an expert on World War II Japanese intelligence training; I'm giving the proverbial, "I read a couple of books... once... a while ago." However, my reading was searching for any possible links to old Ninjutsu methods, and beyond the general "well, they're all spies," I didn't find any.
Yeah I agree Man is a reaching a little with that one, but he did say he was sure others would disagree with him. Bullshido to the rescue, keeping it real yet again.
Originally Posted by Styygens
Anyway, everyone knows all the CIA's REAL ninjas are humble data miners:
Hatsumi is a poser and an opportunist. Onoda is a real fucking warrior and although he isn't a Ninja, he is still a badass. I'm sure he doesn't believe in Ninjers, The Easter Bunny or Santa Claus either.
Originally Posted by W. Rabbit
They found this guy pretty close to where i used to live:
I prefer my Ninja based on fiction and pop culture, hence all my knowledge about them comes from TV tropes.
For example: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...tionOfNinjutsu
For those not familiar with TV tropes it's like the Wikipedia of Fiction and popculture giving you the who, what, why, when and how of Fiction.
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