Shotoku's conduct on this occasion has inspired much censure and surprise when contrasted with his conspicuous respect for virtue in all other cases. But the history of the time requires intelligent expansion. Cursory reading suggests that Umako's resolve to kill Sushun was taken suddenly in consequence of discovering the latter's angry mood.
The truth seems to be that Sushun was doomed from the moment of his accession. To suffer him to reign, harbouring, as he must have harboured, bitter resentment against his brother's slayer, would have been a weakness inconsistent with Umako's character.
The conspiracy was discovered, and the Soga forces, acting under the nominal authority of the deceased Emperor's consort, Umako's niece, moved against Anahobe and Moriya, who had not been able to combine their strength. The destruction of Prince Anahobe was easily effected, but the work of dealing with the o-muraji taxed the resources of the Soga to the utmost.
The first public temples for the service of Buddhism were Shotoku's Shitenno-ji and Umako's Hoko-ji erected in 587. Taking the shiro as 6 tsubo, the above three areas total 1000 acres approximately.
It was a moment of extreme tension. Umako's answer is said to have been: "Your Imperial Highness will work for the propagation of the faith. I, a humble subject, will maintain it to the death."