The Indian 5th Infantry Division was a WW2 infantry division in the Indian Army,It is notable as one of the few Allied divisions to fight the Italians, Germans and Japanese.
The divisional sign, of a red circle on a black background which gave the division its nickname, was selected after the first selection of a boar’s head was deemed offensive to Moslem soldiers and every other animal suggested had already been selected by other newly raised divisions
Between 1940 and 1941 the 5th Division was involved in the campaign in East Africa. After periods in Egypt, Cyprus and Syria, by 1942 it was involved in the fighting in the Western Desert of North Africa and the withdrawal of the Allied troops to El Alamein. By late 1943 the 5th Division had shipped to India and took part in the campaign in Burma initially deployed to the Arakan front. After the Japanese had been defeated in the Battle of the Admin Box the division was airlifted north to take part in the Battle of Imphal and the Battle of Kohima. Thereafter, the division was almost constantly involved in the advance through central Burma until fighting ended with the Japanese surrender in August 1945.
BALL OF FIRE The Fifth Indian Division in the Second World War.
Very useful account of Indian troops at war in Eritrea then the Western Desert, followed by Burma including Arakan, then up to Kohima & Imphal and the advance south through Meiktila to Rangoon. The author provides plenty of the action with good details especially Kohima and Imphal. It was one of the few Allied divisions to fight the Italians, Germans and Japanese.