more unsolicited comments:
ichigeki hissatsu (one strike, one kill) whether it is realistic in the context of unarmed combat, is an ideal that synchronizes perfectly with the ideals of warfare put down in asia. namely, the use of minimal force to achieve maximum effect. i submit to you examples such as pearl harbor and inchon, where well-placed strikes achieved effects far beyond the investment made into them.
in the context of unarmed combat, i believe that it takes years and years of the "proper" groundwork to achieve the physical potential necessary for a "ichigeki hissatsu" strike. we're talking about qigong exercises, and other yoga/gungfu infulenced breathing regimens which strengthen the natural power of the body. granted, that is something that can be quantified by scientific means.
western boxing takes a completely different tack: it emphasizes the ability to receive punishment in order to place oneself in a battle of attrition. to be considered one's physical peak in late teens and early 20s is rather peculiar for something that should be a combination of experience and physical conditioning. and if one strike one kill wasn't a possibility at all, there wouldn't be any knockouts and "go for the chin, rocky!" calls, would there?
and speaking of pankration and boxing:
(excuse me as i enter a flame-retardant bunker)
the reason why the fighting systems of the ancient western world such as pankration fell apart, was twofold:
(1) under the roman empire, they consolidated in the school of gladiatores - which specialized in various styles of armed and unarmed combat. just as these systems were reaching their peak, word reached china through arab traders of the gladiatorial contests. many gungfu masters took the call as a personal challenge, and walked west to rome. they called it the "dragon road", and those few who survived the torturous nine-month journey fought in the arenas and drove western unarmed combat into the ground. a little known bit of history.
(2) those systems of unarmed fighting as existed amongst the slavs and tribes of eastern europe took a beating under the mongol invasions of the 12th century. the mongols were the progenitors of what eventually evolved into sumo in its purest form, which moved into jujutsu and karate (it is no coincidence that sumo is the only martial art sanctioned by the imperial family) ... their primary focus was also in one strike one kill (silencing sentries, for example ... the mongols who fought in the soviet army during ww2 were well known for doing this with a quick kick to the nuts: a proven centuries-old method) out of necessity ... which is how they managed to minimize casualties, maximize their power projection and not only conquer, but maintain such a vast empire.
wow this went off in a tangent again
(flame-retardant bunker starts to melt)
Skorzeny, you're right about not using movies as the foundations for one's tactical mindset. however i have this book in japanese called "100 greatest sword duels of all time" (samurai duels, of course) and quite a number of them are based on the same lines. assuming there is a fair amount of ritual and hyperbole involved in the accounts, surely they can't ALL be biased to the point of being useless?
oh and i completely agree about the breathing bit. it is physiologically impossible to panic if one's breathing is under control ... nice to know something works good for a change
[This message has been edited by dragontooth73 (edited September 26, 2000).]