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Word Count: 738
Oda Nobunaga was born with only a small bit of property but like many other daimyo of the era Nobunaga rose to power mostly through his military prowess Ruthlessly taking over his neighbors he controlled the majority of his province by the age of 25 Among his many allies was a young Toyotomi Hideoshi who would later rise from his peasant background to become ruler of Japan A wildly successful surprise attack on Imagawa Yoshimoto is 1560 propelled Nobunaga to the front ranks of military power in Japan Furthermore it brought him his greatest ally Tokugawa Ieyasu who had previously been obligated to serve Yoshimoto With only two provinces standing between him and Kyoto Nobunaga quickly took these as well through intermarriage with the ruling families Now all that Nobunaga needed in order to take Kyoto was an excuse In 1565 the puppet shogun Ashikaga Yoshiteru was killed by his cruel puppeteers who promptly replaced him with his cousin The murdered shoguns younger brother Yoshiaki fled he capital and came to Oda Nobunaga for protection Nobunaga now had his excuse In the name of Ashikaga Yoshiaki the rightful shogun he fought his way into Kyoto and restored Yoshiaki as the shogun It goes without saying that Yoshiaki was to become nothing more than Nobunagas puppet With one hand controlling the government at Kyoto and the other hand leading a group of formidable allies Oda Nobunaga was now the most powerful man in Japan Nobunaga now set out to conquer those who would defy his rule and to break up any hostile alliances before they could form The first targets were the Asai and Asakura families whom he defeated in a 1570 battle with the help of Tokugawa Ieyasu Next on his list were the militant monks of the Ikko-ikki but remnants of the Asai and Asakura attacked his back end and Nobunaga was forced to put off fighting the Ikko-ikki while
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