This is the story of the famous, “Ninja Toilet Assassination”
The ninjas employed by the powerful Oda Nobunaga steadily earned a status as the most dangerous operatives in Japan. When the feudal lord Uesugi Kenshin realized the Nobunaga had decided to bring about his downfall, he turned to the ninja known as Kasumi Danjo for aid. By hiring the famous ninja, he hoped he could deter Nobunga from attempting to assassinate him. But Nobunaga, far from being discouraged, redoubled his efforts.
Night cloaked Kenshin’s castle in darkness. Familiar with how Nobunaga’s ninjas could flow from one shadow to the next, Danjo constantly searched the nooks and crannies for intruders. As a crescent moon reached its zenith, the faint sound of footsteps sounded from around a corner. Without hesitation, Danjo signaled for three of his men to follow him and rushed into the hallway, swords drawn. Only a torch light flickered uncertainly a few paces away lit the darkness. A dark shape, just a shadow within shade, caught Danjo’s eye and he gestured for his men to prepare themselves. Yelling their battle-cries, the four men hurled themselves down the length of the corridor and hacked into the black shape. They realized too late that they had been tricked. Nobunaga’s ninjas, hidden in the ceiling beams above, rained down a hail of shuriken before Danjo and his men could even raise a hand in defense.
Worried that the alarm has already been raised, the leader of Nobunga’s ninjas, Fune Genpachi, rushed ahead of his men and, leaping into Kenshin’s room, prepared to deal the deathblow. But suddenly, from behind the doorway, a wounded and bloody Danjo emerged. Guessing at Genpachi’s intentions, he had hidden beneath the corpses of his three men until the coast was clear. Now he struck: The first blows shattered the surprised Genpachi’s arms and final strike snapped his neck. Filled with relief, Kenshin showered the wounded Danjo with praise. But Nobunaga and his ninjas were far from done.
Ukifine Jinnai had gained a reputation, even amongst his fellow ninjutsu practitioners, for his unusual abilities. Standing at a mere 3.28 feet in height, he trained himself to stay perfectly still in small hiding places by regularly squeezing himself into clay jars. When tasked with the assassination of Kenshin, Jinnai quickly thought of an ingenious method. At Nobunaga’s behest, he snuck into the castle latrines and hid himself under the wooden boards. For a long time, he endured the rank odors and uncomfortable position, waiting for Kenshin to answer nature’s call. Hours later, Kenshin at last entered the latrine. Without a moment’s hesitation, Jinnai thrust his sword upwards to impale the feudal lord. Kenshin’s death cries drew the horrified guards into the latrine, but, despite their thorough search, they found no intruder.
Unbeknownst to the guards, the diminutive ninja, after delivering the fatal sword thrust, had dropped into the latrine. Submerged under the waste, he used his sword sheath to breath until the guards left the latrine, then clambered out and escaped. On his way back to report to Nobunaga.