The Dark Psychology of Admiral Akainu

Ever wondered what causes a hot head to become a hot head? The case of Admiral Akainu is a stellar example.

Akainu is a well-known One Piece antagonist. A strict and fearsome Marine Admiral, he adopts a concrete philosophy of Absolute Justice, donning the narrow-minded belief that all pirates are evil individuals that need to be extinguished.

I am going to dive deeper into Akainu’s way of thinking, to truly understand why Akainu thinks the way he does.


What truly makes Akainu scary is the lengths that he is willing to go to for his belief in justice. While many other Marines do seek to capture the bad guys (mainly pirates), hoping to make the world a better place, Akainu has a terrifying belief in Absolute Justice: a concrete philosophy that deems all pirates evil and must be eradicated from the world. There are several instances of Akainu displaying his Absolute Justice, the most notable being the Ohara incident.

After the World Government discovered that the scholars of Ohara had researched into the Void Century, the World Government ordered a buster call on the island. A devastating military attack featuring fleets of navy ships, firing cannons with enough firepower to desolate an entire island. Ohara was home to multiple civilians, therefore an escape boat left the island with women and children who were innocent. However, Akainu feared that scholars could have boarded the boat, which would have meant that scholars escaped the island. In Akainu’s mind, this would have meant that the mission failed, as even if one scholar survived, they could have continued their illegal research into the Void Century. Akainu took no risks, so he ordered his men to blast the boat, killing hundreds of civilians in the process.

Akainu is willing to go to any length to fulfill his sense of justice. The terrifying thing about this is that Akainu is numb to any emotions of guilt or remorse. The man can kill innocent civilians, and as long as he can convince himself that it was all done in the pursuit of justice, he is happy to do it. This is the malevolence of Admiral Akainu.


Akainu does not only express his hatred for pirates but also a yearning sense of patriotism for the Marines. Akainu fully supports the Marines’ existence, believing that every Marine officer should not be cowardly, and should be willing to die in battle for the Marines. This is shown in the Marineford arc, when Akainu kills a Marine officer who wanted to flee the battle, to return home to his family. Akainu deemed the officer as cowardly, and therefore useless to the Marines, so he decided to disintegrate the officer, using the powers of his Magu-Magu Mi Devil Fruit. This is the cold-hearted and stern mind of Akainu, as colleague Admiral Aokiji stated, “The philosophy of Absolute Justice can a drive a man insane.” Akainu is the product of an individual who has overdosed on the ideal of justice. A man who dehumanizes himself, doing immoral acts for what he believes is the greater good.


Presently in the story, Akainu’s backstory remains a mystery. Because of this, we do not know what caused Akainu to become the man he is today. It is likely that a tragic event occurred in Akainu’s childhood that resulted in Akainu developing a hatred for pirates. Readers have theorized that Akainu grew up on a pirate-inhabited island where corruption, thievery, and degeneracy ran rapidly. Upon Akainu growing up witnessing the horror of pirates throughout his childhood, a deep detestation against pirates brewed in Akainu’s mind, causing him to develop his firm belief in Absolute Justice. Others propose that Akainu lived on a peaceful island, until pirates terrorized his home, killing his loved ones in the process. Whatever the event or circumstance was, it forever altered Akainu’s perspective of justice. Resulting in a black & white viewpoint of good and evil, with pirates forever being the villains.


Readers have speculated whether author Eiichiro Oda will give Akainu a redemption arc. A time when Akainu realises that his philosophy of justice is flawed, realizing that justice is not black & white and is entirely dependent upon perspective. Perhaps Akainu will recognize that the true enemy is the World Government that he has been so loyally served.

There are many avenues in which Oda can go with Akainu, and it will be interesting to see which he takes.

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