"If ordered to march: tramp, tramp or shoot: bang, bang. This is the manifestation of the highest wisdom of enlightenment. The unity of Zen and war ... extends to the farthest reaches of the holy war now under way." The New York Times offers a <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2003/01/11/arts/11ZEN.html">grim look</a> at a horrifying and deeply shameful part of the recent history of Zen Buddhism. During the Second World War Zen Buddhist luminaries were deeply complicit in the <a href="http://www.darkzen.com/Articles/zenholy.html">dark work of the Imperial Japanese war machine</a>, and by association, with its gruesome massacres and atrocities. This would, of course, come as a big surprise to enthusiastic Zen practitioners ignorant of its wartime history, especially since Buddhism enjoys a reputation for peace lacking in most other major religions. In fact, while Japanese groups have issued sporadic apologies after the war for the religion's bad behaviour, it would take the landmark publication of the book Zen at War to prompt the Zen leadership to issue a major apology for its wartime conduct. Which leaves one to wonder: Which sacred cow will be the next to go?