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ILL. Mitsuo Fuchida was the pilot in charge of one of the most successful aerial attacks in recorded history. Under his command was a squadron of 360 specially selected pilots, & on Dec. 7, 1941, Fuchida’s squadron bombed Pearl Harbor.

He quickly became one of the most highly decorated pilots in the Japanese air force, & the one most hated by the American forces. That included Jacob DeShazer, a young B-25 bomber pilot who longed for the day when he would be able to pay Japan back for what they had done.

One day that opportunity arose as DeShazer became a part of the very first bombing raids over Japan. But after dropping his bombs on the city of Nagoya, DeShazer lost his way in the heavy fog & was forced to bail out when his plane ran out of fuel.

He was quickly taken prisoner, & for almost two years, DeShazer suffered from hunger, cold, dysentery, & watching his fellow prisoners die. And the more he experienced this treatment the deeper his hatred of the Japanese grew.

Then, in 1944, someone gave DeShazer a Bible. He started at Genesis & read on & on, barely sleeping. And by the time he had come to the Book of Romans he had surrendered his heart & life to Jesus as his Savior & his Lord.

Immediately Matthew 5:44 became a crucial challenge to him, “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you & pray for those who spitefully use you & persecute you.”

Because of it DeShazer’s attitude toward his Japanese guards began to change. His hostility evaporated & every morning he greeted them warmly. He prayed for them & sought to witness to them. Slowly their attitude toward him also changed & some of them even began bringing him extra food & supplies.

Finally, the war was over & DeShazer was free. Returning home he studied for the ministry & decided to return to Japan as a missionary. After establishing a church in Nagoya, the very city he had bombed, he wrote a pamphlet entitled, “I Was a Prisoner of the Japanese.” It wasn’t long until thousands of Japanese wanted to see & hear the man who could forgive & love his enemies.

Meanwhile, Fuchida, the Japanese hero, had come out of the war a very disillusioned man. He went back to his farm, but because of his wartime commission he was often called into the city to testify at the war crimes trials.

On one of these trips he was handed a pamphlet - the pamphlet DeShazer had written. Fuchida read it & reread it, & despite being a firm Buddhist was intrigued enough to buy a Japanese Bible.

He was especially affected by the words Christ spoke upon the cross when He prayed, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:24).

Then he met DeShazer, & it wasn’t long until these two men, who once were sworn enemies, became the best of friends & brothers in Christ. And Fuchida became a great evangelist in Japan & throughout the world. (Adapted from the internet)

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