20 Facts About The Yakuza May You Don’t Know

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Greetings! Welcome to yakuza facts.

I myself find this organazation rather intreging..so i´ve decided to search up a bit about their story and some facts about them.

Short intro

Yakuza, also called bōryokudan or gokudō, Japanese gangsters, members of what are formally called bōryokudan (“violence groups”), or Mafia-like criminal organizations.

The Japanese police, and media by request of the police, call them bōryokudan ( “violent groups”), while the yakuza call themselves “ninkyō dantai” (“chivalrous organizations”).

The yakuza are notorious for their strict codes of conduct and organized nature. They have a large presence in the Japanese media and operate internationally with an estimated 102,000 members.

Fact #1:

The Yakuza “employ” more than 100,000 people, effectively making them the largest criminal organization in the world.

Fact #2 :

The name Yakuza comes from Oicho-Kabu, a game similar to blackjack. Ya-ku-za (8-9-3) is said to be a losing hand. The word yakuza literally means ‘good for nothing’.

Fact #3:

Punishment is doled out through physical violence. Failure to complete a task ends up with yubizume, which is amputation of a part of the little finger.

ಠ_ಠ im sure everyone has heard this one.

Fact #4:

Yoshio Kodama united the Yakuza factions and became the first “godfather”.

Fact #5:

Sumo wrestling events are usually rife with Yakuza members.

Fact #6:

The Yakuza are adept at corporate blackmail and extortion. They have a specific group dedicated for this, called sokaiya.

Fact #7:

The Yakuza see violent death as poetic, tragic and an honorable way to die. They also help the weak and steal from the rich. These romantic notions actually put the gang in a favorable light in the public’s eye.

Fact #8:

The Yakuza responded to the tsunami catastrophe faster than the Japanese government did. The Yakuza delivered food, water, blankets and toiletries to evacuation centers in northeast Japan.

Fact #9:

Many Yakuza have tattoos done by an old way of inking called “irezumi.” 300 years ago in the Edo period they used tattoos as a way to identify criminals.

Fact #10:

Sakazuki is a ritual exchange of sake cups. The Yakuza use this to create father-son bonds that can’t be broke.

Fact #11:

KaTaoka was the oyabun of Japan’s largest Yakuza family, Yamaguchi-gumi. He was nicknamed “Kuma” (“Bear”) for attacking his opponent’s eyes.

Fact #12:

The yakuza is populated almost entirely by men, and there are very few women involved in the group. Yakuza women are called “ane-san” which means “older sisters”.

Fact #13:

Yakuza has always been involved in politics in Japan.

Fact #14:

According to the U.S. State Department of Treasury, the Yamaguchi-gumi are worth 80 billion dollars, which makes them one of the wealthiest gangs in the world.

Fact #15:

In 2013, Yakuza published their own magazine. Named “Yamaguchi-gumi Shinpo”, the magazine contained haiku poetry, articles on fishing and entreaties to its readers to perform good works.

Welcome to anohter chapter of the yakuza mag!xD

Fact #16:

Bob the Builder has five fingers instead of four in Japan. Local authorities decided to give him the extra digit so Japanese children would not think he was a member of yakuza. ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)

Fact #17:

The intricately tattooed skins of yakuza members are sometimes peeled of their corpses and sold on the black market to be displayed in galleries.

Fact #18:

To become a member of the Yamaguchi-gumi family, one needs to pass a written exam that tests the potential member´s knowledge of gangster lore and rules.

Cram up gangstas!

Fact #19:

Katana, the traditional Japanese sword originally used by samurais, still plays an important role in yakuza. A number of people including some prominent politicians and businessmen have been killed with the sword by yakuza.

Fact #20:

When the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) was launched in Japan in 1990, the government ordered the consoles to be shipped at night to reduce the risk of potential robbery by the yakuza who considered the consoles a valuable commodity.

Fact #21:

The yakuza are sometimes considered the true heirs of the samurai. Both are organized into a strong hierarchal systems based on honor ml and subservience. Both regard violence as an efficient way to get things done. And both have a strong sense of tradition and pride.

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