Marushin MARS026 Imperial Japanese Navy Yokosuka MXY-7 Ohka "Baka" Kamikaze Rocket - 721 Navy Squadron (Jinrai Butai), 1945 (1:48 Scale)
"Sweet and proper it is to die for your country, But Death would just as soon come after him. Who runs away; Death gets him by the backs of his fleeting knees and jumps him from behind."
- Horace's ode to Roman soldiers, which could be equally applicable to the Japanese Tokkōtai pilots
The Yokosuka MXY-7 Ohka, ("cherry blossom") was a purpose-built, rocket powered kamikaze aircraft employed by Japan towards the end of World War II. The United States gave the aircraft the name Baka (Japanese for "idiot").
It was a manned flying bomb that was carried underneath a Mitsubishi G4M "Betty", Yokosuka P1Y Ginga "Frances" (guided Type 22) or planned Heavy Nakajima G8N Renzan "Rita" (transport type 43A/B) bomber to within range of its target; on release, the pilot would first glide toward the target and when close enough he would fire the Ohka's rocket engine and guide the missile towards the ship that he intended to destroy. The final approach was almost unstoppable (especially for Type 11) because the aircraft gained tremendous speed. Later versions were designed to be launched from coastal air bases and caves, and even from submarines equipped with aircraft catapults, although none were actually used this way. It appears that the operational record of Ohkas used in action includes three ships sunk or damaged beyond repair and three other ships with significant damage. Seven US ships were damaged or sunk by Ohkas throughout the war.
Conceived by Ensign Mitsuo Ohta of the 405th Kokutai, and aided by students of the Aeronautical Research Institute at the University of Tokyo, Ohta submitted his plans to the Yokosuka research facility. The Imperial Japanese Navy decided the idea had merit and Yokosuka engineers of the First Naval Air Technical Bureau (Kugisho) created formal blueprints for what was to be the MXY7. The only variant which saw service was the Type 11, and was powered by three Type 4 Mark 1 Model 20 rockets. 150 were built at Yokosuka, and another 600 were built at the Kasumigaura Naval Air Arsenal. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 4.25 inches
Length: 5 inches
Release Date: June 2009
Hsitorical Account: "Thunder God Corps" - Even as the ten test items were being delivered, the IJN was ordering the Ohka into production. A decision was made to have it manufactured at the Yokosuka Arsenal to help keep the weapon secret. Some officials also believed that civilian manufacturing firms would find the idea so shocking that they would think the Navy had gone mad. A force of volunteers, designated the "Jinrai Butai (Thunder God Corps)", was organized to fly the weapons. The volunteers were screened to weed out first sons of families, only children, or men with family responsibilities. The "winners" of the selection process were then put through indoctrination and training.
The training and flight tests were conducted through the fall and into the early winter of 1944. However, deployment proved troublesome. Two batches of Ohkas were sent to the Philippines on carriers late in 1944, but both carriers were sunk by American submarines, along with their suicide weapons. A few Ohkas were eventually transported to Formosa, Okinawa, Singapore, and elsewhere in the shrinking Japanese empire.