Nude's character is based, according to Susan Hoover, on the Japanese soldier Hiroo Onada. However, there were a few other soldiers who's story was similar, one of them being Shoichi Yokoi, who has recently died.
On September 23rd, 1997, Chris wrote to the Camel Mailing List, quoting from a newsfeed:
I will also tell you about how japanese think about Nude's character. The Nude story remind us of Mr.Onoda or Mr.Yokoi and also one more person.
First of all, I made a table of what was happend on these soldiers.
|1941||Mr.Shoichi Yokoi was drafted and assigned to the regiment landed on China.|
|1944||Yokoi assigned to Guam.|
|Aug. The regiment Yokoi belonged to was almost annihilated, he run away into jungles.|
|Dec. Mr.Hiroo Onoda was assigned as an officer to Philippines.|
|1945||Jul. Yokoi was thought to be killed in the battle, Japanese government made announcement of his death.|
|Aug. The War was Over. Of course both two soldiers didn't know these news, and kept on hiding themselves in the jungles.|
|1972||Jan. Yokoi was found in a jungle of Guam island.|
|Feb. Yokoi returned to Japan.
He landed Tokyo first, and then came back to Nagoya, where he was born and raised.
|Oct. Japanese soldiers fought with Policemen of Philippines.
Kinshichi Kozuka, one of japanese soldiers, had been shot and killed in this incident.
The other man was Hiroo Onoda, and he run away again to the jungles.
|1973||A search party of Japan went to Philippines, but they could not find Onoda.|
|1974||Feb. A young japanese man named Norio Suzuki, found Onoda.
Onoda told Suzuki that he knew the war was over, but he could not return until his commander order him to release his duty. He seemed to think that he might be thought to surrender if he went home disobeying his duty.
|Mar. Norio Suzuki took Onoda's commander to Philippines. Yoshimi Taniguchi who was Onoda's commander during the war, commanded Onoda to release his duty. Onoda then decided to go back to Japan.|
|1975||Onoda went to Brazil to run a farm.
He couldn't adapt to Japan which had changed so much.
|1997||Sep. Mr.Yokoi died of heart attack at a hospital.|
"It is with much embarrassment that I return" - What Mr.Yokoi ashamed of?
The words that Mr.Yokoi said when he returned, were "I feel shame that I have returned alive..." and followed "but I gathered the spirits of heroes left in the jungles after the war, and I have brought them back to Japan now"
Japanese soldiers was lectured that Imperial Japan fights for the rights of Asian countries to be free. And the Imperial soldiers code called "Senjinkun" said that the soldier was not allowed to be a prisoner of war and it's the most shameful act to surrender. It meant that however hopeless the situation they were in was, they had to fight with enemies until they died in honor.
So Mr.Yokoi felt shame that he couldn't fullfill his duty as a soldier, and that he didn't act as he lectured.
Who is Nude?
If you are Japanese, the Nude album also reminds you one more person. His name was Mr. Tetsutaro Kato. He was a salesman, and he was drafted by Japanese government in WW2. He ordered to take care of POW. He worked for them, but they didn't think so.
After the war, he punished with death because he was thought by POW that he ill-treated them.
In the middle of 60's, a TV program let people know his story. A famous actor was cast as Mr.Kato. Many people watched this program, and sympathised with his destiny. In the play, he was commanded to kill a man. Of course he never wanted to do harm to others, but he finally did. He just trusted his country, he just obeyed orders. When the war is over, he suffered from what he did in the war. Yes, he couldn't forget the memory of taking a life for a life to be free...
So now I want to say again that Japanese people think that Nude's story is not only that of Mr. Onoda or Mr. Yokoi, but also that of Mr. Kato.
Shingo Doi's letter was forwarded to Susan Hoover (who wrote the concept for the album) in early December, 1997. Here is her reply: