Burma Road

Burma Road
a road extending from Lashio, Burma, to Chungking, China: used during World War II to supply Allied military forces in China.

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Former highway, South Asia.

It ran 681 mi (1,096 km) from Lashio (in eastern Burma, now Myanmar) northeast to Kunming (in Yunnan, China). An extension ran east from Kunming, then north to Chongqing. Completed in 1939, it functioned as a supply route to the interior of China, carrying war goods. It was seized by the Japanese in 1942. It was reopened when it was connected to the Stilwell Road from India in 1945. Its importance diminished after World War II, but it remains a link in a 2,100-mi (3,400-km) road system from Yangon, Myanmar, to Chongqing, China.

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      highway linking Lashio, in eastern Myanmar (Burma), with K'un-ming (Kunming), in Yunnan province, China, a distance of 717 miles (1,154 km). The Chinese began construction of the road after the outbreak of the Sino-Japanese War in 1937 and the occupation of the seacoast of China by the Japanese. Completed in 1939, it functioned for three years as a vital supply route to the interior of China from the outside world, carrying war goods transported by sea to Yangôn (Rangoon) and then by train to the Lashio railhead. In April 1942, however, the Japanese overran Burma, seized Lashio, and thus closed the road at its source. In 1944, as Allied forces from Assam in eastern India advanced into northern Burma, they constructed a supply road from Ledo, India, which finally connected with the Burma Road at a point still in Chinese hands. This road, known as the Stilwell Road (q.v.), or (until its completion) the Ledo Road, was opened in January 1945. Although the importance of the Burma Road diminished after World War II with the growth of Myanmar isolationism, it remains a link in a 2,100-mile (3,400-kilometre) road system extending from Yangon to Chungking, China.

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Universalium. 2010.

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