The intermittent border disputes between Red China and India flared up again this week with new fighting in the Himalayas.
The intermittent border disputes between Red China and India flared up again this week with new fighting in the Himalayas. One area in dispute is the poverty-stricken province of Ladakh, wedged between Chinese Sinkiang and Indian Kashmir. Even making a tree grow in the arid, brown, forbidding land of Ladakh is an achievement. The province lies between two and four miles above sea level with winter temperatures that sometimes drop to 30 degrees below zero. The people of Ladakh are neither Indian nor Chinese. They look Mongoloid and speak a dialect of Tibetan. India is planning to integrate Ladakh into the rest of the country by holding elections at future dates. There is also a modest program for developing winter wheat and other crops that will grow in Ladakh's short growing season. But the major development is a buildup of Indian military forces. The airport shown in these official Indian films of Ladakh is one of the highest in the world. It is a transshipping point for men and supplies headed for forward Indian outposts. And until roads are pushed through the towering mountains, Indian forces must rely on aerial transport to keep men and supplies at the front.