Nations in the Balance

The India-Burma Campaigns, December 1943-August 1944

Christopher L. Kolakowski

A new history of the battles in Burma in 1944, the outcome of which decided World War II in Asia and influenced the next 75 years of Asian history.
Publication date:
January 2022
Publisher :
Casemate Publishers
Illustration :
50 photographs and 12 maps
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ISBN : 9781636240961

Dimensions : 228 X 152 mm
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• Accessible history of the "forgotten" Indian-Burma theatre in World War II
• The CBI battles of 1944 involved troops from the United Kingdom, United States, Japan, China, Australia, India (including modern Pakistan and Bangladesh), Burma, Nigeria, Kenya, Nepal, and Sri Lanka
• The winners and losers of these battles both decided World War II in Asia and influenced the next 75 years of Asian history

From December 1943 to August 1944, Allied and Japanese forces fought the decisive battles of World War II in Southeast Asia. Fighting centered around North Burma, Imphal, Kohima and the Arakan, involving troops from all over the world along a battlefront the combined size of Pennsylvania and Ohio. The campaigns brought nations into collision for the highest stakes: British and Indian troops fighting for Empire, the Indo-Japanese forces seeking a prestige victory with an invasion of India and the Americans and Chinese focused on helping China and reopening the Burma Road. Events turned on the decisions of the principal commanders - Admiral Louis Mountbatten and Generals Joseph Stilwell, William Slim, Orde Wingate, Mutaguchi Renya, among many others. The impact of the fighting was felt in London, Tokyo and Washington, among other places far away from the battlefront, with effects that presaged postwar political relationships. This was also the first U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia, and Stilwell's operations in some ways foreshadowed battles in Vietnam two decades later.

The Burma and India battles of 1944 offer dramatic and compelling stories of people fighting in difficult conditions against high odds, with far-reaching results. They also proved important to the postwar future of the participant nations and Asia as a whole, with effects that still reverberate decades after the war.