The Battle of Okehazama
Before he came to power, one of Japan’s three great unifiers, Oda Nobunaga, faced a major crisis which threatened to end his career prematurely. Imagawa Yoshimoto, a powerful rival warlord, invaded his lands with an army of 25,000 men. In contrast, Nobunaga could only muster a paltry 2,500 soldiers to defend himself with. As fort after fort fell, Nobunaga’s retainers gave up hope of victory. Some even advocated surrender to preserve their lives. Defeat for Nobunaga meant death for him and possibly his family.