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The Burma Campaign Disaster into Triumph 1942-45.

By: McLynn, Frank.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: London : Vintage, 2011Description: ix [2], 532 pages, [8] pages of plates : illustrations maps, ports ; 20 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9780099551782; 0099551780.Subject(s): World War, 1939-1945 -- Campaigns -- BurmaDDC classification: 940.542591
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

A vivid, brutal and enthralling account of the Burma Campaign - one of the most punishing and hard-fought military adventures of World War Two.

The Burma Campaign was one of the most punishing and protracted military adventures of World War Two. Impenetrable jungle, poor transport infrastructure, seasonal monsoon rains, as well as famine, disease, snakes and crocodiles all bore heavily on the troops.

Against this extraordinary backdrop, Frank McLynn constructs the dramatic story of the four larger-than-life commanders directing the Allied effort: Louis Mountbatten, Orde Wingate, Joseph Stilwell and William Slim, and explores the Campaign through their often stormy relationship.

The Burma Campaign is a strikingly original account from one of our most celebrated historians.

'Magnificent...a closely woven, tightly argued and beautifully written account of the extraordinary men and women who were responsible for the higher direction of the war...This book delights, page after page. McLynn held me spellbound' BBC History Magazine

Includes index.

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Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Prodigious biographer and military historian McLynn (Captain Cook: Master of the Seas) has turned his attention to what he considers one of the great epics of British imperial history, the World War II campaign in Burma against the Japanese. McLynn recounts the struggle for Burma from the viewpoint of four "larger-than-life" personalities: William Slim, Louis Mountbatten, Orde Wingate, and the American Joseph Stilwell. VERDICT While McLynn extends his scope beyond the conflict itself to the larger issues of Japanese aggression, American miscalculations, and Churchill's greatness, this is a personalized account of warfare that fans of E.B. Sledge's With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa will enjoy.-Brian Odom, Pelham P.L., AL (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Review

To honor the one million Burmese who perished in WWII, historian McLynn (Captain Cook) offers a meticulously researched account of the struggle between Japan and the Allied forces in Burma, the present-day Myanmar. Opening with a description of the geographically diverse nation and its impressive wildlife, McLynn focuses on the four Allied leaders who ultimately led the troops to victory. Providing comic relief are excerpts from the diary of U.S. General Joseph ("Vinegar Joe") Stilwell, a West Point alumnus with a facility for languages who slams the colonialist "Limeys" as well as Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek. McLynn considers Stilwell a modern Musketeer along with his British colleagues General William Slim and Orde Wingate, commander of the Chindits, or the Indian Infantry Brigade. He casts the uncle of Prince Philip, Louis Mountbatten (whom Churchill appointed Supreme Commander of Southeast Asia in 1943), in the role of d'Artagnan. Although Burma earned its independence in 1948, McLynn laments the despotic regime that has ruled in the postwar years. Maps help the reader to locate remote battle sites, and a section of photos provides a break from the action. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Kirkus Book Review

A highly opinionated history of the bloody, half-forgotten World War II jungle campaign.After Pearl Harbor, British leaders were shocked by Japan's easy capture of Hong Kong, Malaya and Singapore. They did not expect an invasion of Burma and were equally shocked when it occurred in January 1942, writes veteran British historian McLynn (Captain Cook: Master of the Seas, 2011, etc.). Although outnumbered, aggressive Japanese forces repeatedly defeated poorly led British, Indian and Chinese troops in a four-month campaign that ended with their long, brutal retreat. There followed two years of rebuilding, minor engagements and political fireworks between the allies before a reorganized British and Colonial army led by the widely admired General William Joseph Slim routed the Japanese. McLynn divides the narrative between military events and accounts of half-a-dozen colorful but sadly mismatched Allied leaders. Only Slim emerges unscathed. The commander of American forces, General Joseph ("Vinegar Joe") Stillwell, did not conceal his detestation of the British (Slim excepted) and of Chinese Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek, whose troops were purportedly under Stillwell's control. McLynn describes supreme commanders General Archibald Wavell and, after 1943, Louis Mountbatten as "overpromoted" men who lived up to their mediocre talents. British commander Orde Wingate, a media darling after leading a costly 1943 large-scale raid into Japanese-occupied Burma, seems psychotically eccentric. None of the author's unflattering portraits will surprise educated readers, although recent historians have been more understanding.Clumsily managed, the Burma campaign was also a sideshow that contributed little to Japan's defeat, but McLynn's fiercely partisan judgments and lucid accounts of both military and political bloodletting provide a thoroughly satisfying experience.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.