Although combat in China began as early as 1931, the China-Burma-India Theater didn’t begin until the Japanese invasion of Burma in January of 1942. The timing of this invasion was no accident. Immediately after their attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese moved quickly to secure resources to fuel their war machine. Although their initial assault was a spectacular success, the war in Burma would drag on for the remainder of the war and eventually merge with the Chinese theater to form the China-Burma-India Theater.
The China-Burma-India Theater effectively concluded in 1945 with the expulsion of Japanese forces from most of Burma, the completion of the first overland supply shipments to China, and the Soviet invasion of Manchuria.