Bertil Lintner was a senior writer for the Far Eastern Economic Review for more than twenty years, covering Burma and related issues. He now writes for Asia Times Online, the Swedish daily newspaper Svenska Dagbladet and Jane’s Information Group in the UK. He is a recognized expert on Burmese issues as well as ethnic minorities, insurgencies and narcotics in Southeast and South Asia. In 1985, the Swedish-born Lintner and his Shan wife from Burma headed out on an eighteen-month, 2,275-kilometre overland journey from northeastern India across Burma’s northern rebel-held areas to China. Travelling by foot, jeep, bicycle and elephant, they became the first outsiders in over four decades to cross that isolated area, which then was controlled by various ethnic insurgents.