In This Review

Great Game East: India, China, and the Struggle for Asia's Most Volatile Frontier
Great Game East: India, China, and the Struggle for Asia's Most Volatile Frontier
By Bertil Lintner
Yale University Press, 2015, 376 pp

Lintner shines a bright light on one of the most obscure corners of Asia: the region of mountains and jungles in northeastern India that is surrounded by Bangladesh, Tibet, and Myanmar (also called Burma). What comes into view is a complex struggle between China and India for influence across the wide arc of land and sea that lies between them. Lintner shows how the tribal and ethnic insurgencies that have smoldered in the area for decades have been shaped by colonial legacies, the Indian government’s violent repression of dissent, and periodic Bangladeshi, Chinese, and Pakistani assistance to insurgent groups. India has supported opposition movements in Bangladesh and has tried to maintain influence in Tibet by supporting the Dalai Lama. China, meanwhile, has cooperated with rebels in Myanmar but has also assisted that country’s government in upgrading its naval facilities on the coast facing India.