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It entered Japanese in 1281 when a typhoon destroyed a Mongol invasion fleet. Approximately 633 years later, it entered English. What word is it?

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Answer: kamikaze

The word kamikaze - which derives from the Japanese kami, divine, and kaze, wind - literally means "divine wind."

The Japanese pilots who tried to halt the US invasion of Japan by crashing their planes into American warships were called kamikaze pilots.


Were there Kamikaze pilots in 1914, 633 years after 1281?

[Mootguy: Oops. Change made. This is why MooT isn't a Math game.]
joelynn114 at & at &

I have no qualms about the definition, but the kamikaze pilots weren't trying to halt the US invasion of Japan- there was no invasion; Japan surrendered in August 1945 without a single US soldier setting foot on Japanese soil.

The Japanese Air Force did employ the strategy as the US closed in on Japan. The JAF resorted to using kamikaze pilots against US naval vessels when the ranks of their experienced, well-trained pilots had been decimated by losses (the German Luftwaffe had a similar problem, but no culture of tactical suicide). Japanese industry could replenish the lost aircraft, but not the veteran pilots.
swidler at &

Actually, quite a lot of American soldiers landed on Japanese soil. The island of Okinawa was and is a part of Japan and was the scene of a particularly nasty battle in 1945 with an estimated loss of 200,000 lives. It is not a part of what are considered to be the "home islands
wrennhaley at &

Aside from the question of whether American boots hit Japanese soil before the surrender... What a wonderfully weird idea that one can't be trying to prevent something if that "something" doesn't come to pass... it's flawed, but interesting. I always believed that my uncle was putting aside money for his retirement, but based on this theory that could not have been his intent, because he died before retiring.
jib71 at &

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