By John Tully
During this concise and compelling background, Cambodia’s previous is defined in brilliant aspect, from the richness of the Angkorean empire in the course of the darkish a while of the 18th and early-19th centuries, French colonialism, independence, the Vietnamese clash, the Pol Pot regime, and its present incarnation as a troubled democracy. With vigorous writing and fervour for the subject, John Tully covers the whole sweep of Cambodian historical past, explaining why this land of contrasts continues to be a fascinating enigma to the overseas neighborhood. Detailing the miserable list of battle, famine, and invasion that has threatened to damage Cambodia, this dialogue indicates its survival to be a testomony to the resilience of the human spirit.
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Extra info for A Short History of Cambodia: From Empire to Survival (A Short History of Asia series)
Timur began his attack in March 1398 by crossing the Indus. By September he had defeated many local Hindu rulers. He then captured Multan and ravaged the Punjab. In December 1398 he found himself in front of Delhi facing Nasir al-Din Mahmud Tuqhluq’s army. The Tuzuk-i Timuri, or chronicle of Timur, gives Mahmud’s strength as including 10,000 cavalry, 40,000 infantry, and 125 armored elephants; no ﬁgures are given for Timur’s forces. Timur ﬁrst launched his right wing against Mahmud’s left wing, which was defeated after a bloody battle.
The core of the Mughal military, however, was inextricably interwoven and indeed sustained by the mansabdari system. The imperial treasury paid the mansabdars a salary to maintain their soldiers as well as their personal lifestyles and status, which determined their rank, or zat. In the eleventh year of Akbar’s reign, he instituted a second rank (and salary) known as the sowar rank, which speciﬁcally stated the number of horses and amount of equipment each mansabdar had to maintain. He based the sowar gradations upon the number of soldiers each mansabdar was allowed to recruit, ranging from a low of 10 to a high of 10,000 men.
The Mongols, however, eventually retreated from the ﬁeld. Details are sketchy, 29 Warfare in Medieval India but Alauddin used war elephants, which were part of the force under Zafar Khan that the Mongols cut oﬀ and destroyed. ’’ In 1303 another large Mongol force, led by Targhi Beg (the same warrior who killed Zafar Khan), laid siege to Delhi while Alauddin was busy besieging the Rajput fortress of Chittor. Delhi, however, withstood the attack, giving Alauddin time to organize his forces and plan for the inevitable confrontation.
A Short History of Cambodia: From Empire to Survival (A Short History of Asia series) by John Tully