Our student Eric Schuit has alerted me to a new book, Where China Meets India, by Thant Myint-U, the U.S.-bred grandson of former UN secretary-general U Thant. From a review in The Guardian, the main thrust of the book seems — the “great game” between the two powers — seems fairly predictable. But what I found interesting — from someone whose sympathies are apparently not on China’s side — was this description of Special Zone 2:
The dirt roads become Chinese highways. And much of the Wa zone is on the Chinese electricity grid, and even its internet and mobile phone grid. BlackBerrys don’t work in Rangoon but they do in the Wa area … It’s a stunning reversal in Burma’s geography. What had been remote is now closer to the new centre. What were muddy mountain hamlets are now more modern than Rangoon.