Tuesday, 2023-08-22

A War of Empires: Japan, India, Burma and Britain: 1941-45, by Robert Lyman

An accessible and semi-revisionist[1] history of the Burma campaign in World War II. The author makes the case that the vast expansion of the Indian Army was one of the foundations for Indian independence, even if modern Indian historiography rather focuses on the collaborationist INA.

Another claim made is that Imperial Japan reached its culmination point in Burma, and the army’s commanders wasted the life of their soldiers with reckless abandon. Nor was there any significant attempts to exploit the resources of Burma (nor any other of the areas conquered by Japan) to further the war effort or to alleviate needs at home. After almost a decade of unrelenting warfare in China Japan had nowhere to go but down.

[1] in that 14 Army was hardly forgotten, but rather accomplished a lot despite limited resources.