In Dimapur I had asked the brigadier commanding the base what his ration strength was. ‘Forty-ﬁve thousand, near enough,’ he replied. ‘And how many soldiers can you scrape up out of that lot?’ I inquired. He smiled wryly. ‘I might get ﬁve hundred who know how to ﬁre a riﬂe!’ . But, as at Kohima, everything that could be done to put the sprawling base into a state of defence was being done.