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The Battle for Burma 1942-1945

...more Images of War from Pen & Sword

Title: The Battle for Burma 1942-1945
Author: Philip Jowett
Publisher: Pen & Sword
ISBN: 978-1-52677-527-6

Another in the ever expanding series of Images of War titles from Pen & Sword, and another by author Philip Jowett. A soft-cover book with 234-pages filled with informative text and over 200 archive photos, most of which have not been published before, and all with extensive captions which all add to the text sections to tell the story.
Spread over 15 chapters, this takes us through the events in Burma during WW2 in a straightforward chorological sequence. From the initial successes of the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) as they tried to reach India overland this takes us through elements such as the Chindit operations, the engineering feat of the building of the Ledo-Burma road, to take supplies to the Nationalists in China and much more. By the end, the Japanese had been stopped, and pushed back. Among the photos we see a real mix of the participants, not just British, American and Japanese forces, but also Burmese, Chinese and Indian troops all fighting the same war for Burma. Equipment is another interesting mixture, with photos including the use of both LCI(L) and the small LCA, craft we so normally associate with the Normandy landings but which were also used more widely. At the end, we see some pictures of emaciated British POWs who had managed to survive a brutal captivity, but also equally starving Japanese soldiers who contrary to so many stories, could not survive in the jungle on just small quantities of rice. Pictures in the final chapter show Japanese officers arriving in white painted transport aircraft to surrender at the close of the war.
As a regular reader of military history books for over 50 years now, I for one feel that while I know a little about the war in Burma, I know much more about WW2 in Europe, North Africa, Eastern Europe and even the American Island Hopping campaign across the Pacific than I do about events in Burma, so I found this a particularly interesting book, plus some potential modelling ideas as well.
Thanks to Pen & Sword for our review copy.


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