Britain says its greatest battle was fought in Imphal and Kohima

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Britain says its greatest battle was fought in Imphal and Kohima

Manipur: By the time the war ended, it was one of the most brutal campaigns in military history. For the British, the war may have ended in victory, but the empire was never the same again. The end of the Raj was near. For Japan, the loss of South Asia marked the end of its era of aggression, the end of its imperialist ambitions.

The decisive battles of Imphal and Kohima during World War II have been voted the greatest battles fought in the history of the British Army in a contest organised last month by the National Army Museum in England.

For amateur war researcher Rajeshwar Yumnam and his team, the bad weather and threats from extremists were hardly a deterrent, as they relentlessly dug around a hilltop in Manipur's Sadar Hills district, which served as a Japanese army post during World War

For Mr Yumnam and his team, the place was a potential goldmine, with their metal detector beeping almost everywhere in Motbung, one of the areas that saw a do-or-die battle between Japanese troops and British soldiers in 1944, during the war. A defeat here at the hands of the British troops had forced the Japanese to eventually surrender in a theatre.

Mr Yumnam's team has dug-out significant war-items, including Japanese grenades and empty magazines, nuts and crews of tanks and 30 rounds of Rifle bullets of British origin. Helping Mr Yumnam carry out his mission, were war diaries, war citations, war veterans, maps and backing from the Burma Campaign Society in London of which he is the only Indian member.

The battle of Kohima began on April 3, 1944, when 15,000 men of the Japanese 15th Army attacked a British garrison with a fighting force of only 1,500 men. Outnumbered 10 to one, the men stood their ground for nearly two weeks, until reinforcements arrived.

"The story of the World War is less known to the people of the state. We have tried to establish what happened here. War-time items are still intact. It's easy for researchers to excavate," Mr Yumnam said.

At the fifth battlefield that Mr Yumnam has marked for proper and further digging, the relics will enrich his collections with which he hopes to establish a Second World War museum in Manipur along with other like-minded researchers, to coincide with the 70th year of the Battle of Imphal in 2014.
Britain says its greatest battle was fought in Imphal and Kohima | NDTV.com
 

W.G.Ewald

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The decisive battles of Imphal and Kohima during World War II have been voted the greatest battles fought in the history of the British Army in a contest organised last month by the National Army Museum in England.
Maybe, if the odds between the opposing forces is the only criterion.

Otherwise, El Alamein was the most decisive.

The Battle of El Alamein

The Battle of El Alamein, fought in the deserts of North Africa, is seen as one of the decisive victories of World War Two. The Battle of El Alamein was primarily fought between two of the outstanding commanders of World War Two, Montgomery, who succeeded the dismissed Auchinleck, and Rommel. The Allied victory at El Alamein lead to the retreat of the Afrika Korps and the German surrender in North Africa in May 1943.
 

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Kohima "was one of the greatest battles of the Second World War, rivalling El Alamein and Stalingrad, though it still remains comparatively unknown. However, to the men who fought there, it remains "The Battle". (Swinson)
The Battle of Kohima 1944
 

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Maybe, if the odds between the opposing forces is the only criterion.

Otherwise, El Alamein was the most decisive.

The Battle of El Alamein
Sir, actually one of the consideration could have been the terrain.

In Manipur/Nagaland sector, visibility is limited to 4-5 feet max. Add to that, incessant rains, killing humid weather, all possible diseases, loose soil etc. Mobility goes for a toss & in absence of visibility, one becomes a sitting duck for the occupying force (provided weather has spared you from it debilitating effects).

it is the ideal turf for an insurgent force. It would say, it is next to Siachin in terms of adds against survival prevalent there. I have a trove of personal accounts from young kins & friends posted in such locations.
 

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Sir, actually one of the consideration could have been the terrain.

In Manipur/Nagaland sector, visibility is limited to 4-5 feet max. Add to that, incessant rains, killing humid weather, all possible diseases, loose soil etc. Mobility goes for a toss & in absence of visibility, one becomes a sitting duck for the occupying force (provided weather has spared you from it debilitating effects).

it is the ideal turf for an insurgent force. It would say, it is next to Siachin in terms of adds against survival prevalent there. I have a trove of personal accounts from young kins & friends posted in such locations.
So you mean Indian National army and Japanese army were insurgent force?Not only Japanese fought,Indian National Army also fought and played important role.Why no mention of Indian National Army??

It was most important because if any how INA managed to break British line then there would be revolution in India,then British would lose it's most important colony.Would be Britain a superpower with out it's Indian empire?
 

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So you mean Indian National army and Japanese army were insurgent force?Not only Japanese fought,Indian National Army also fought and played important role.Why no mention of Indian National Army??

It was most important because if any how INA managed to break British line then there would be revolution in India,then British would lose it's most important colony.Would be Britain a superpower with out it's Indian empire?
INA fought brave, marched long distances on empty stomach, harassed the British IA on several occasions & made huge sacrifices but they were not well-supplied, not did they have enough numbers (a must-have in these areas to compensate for attrition, resulting from factors mentioned in my previous post), so militarily they had limited impact. Logistics is everything.

But, regardless of their military impact, their war-exploits & stories of sacrifices, were so widespread that the British Government forbade the BBC from broadcasting their story, fearing mass revolts and uprisings. But, nation managed to witness the INA trials via newspapers reports & there were subsequent minor revolts in British IN & IA. And, these minor revolts (being seen after 90 years) were one of the deciding factors for the British in leaving its Indian dominion.
 

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