Together with the PLA Air Force and the Navy, the PLA Ground Force also commands a large numbers Coastal oil tankers, mostly Type626 and Type632 classes. They might be small (1,200 to 3,500 tons) but they deliver to small ports where where those big naval tankers could not. They also have numbers on their side.
Those important logistics assets are generally overlooked by folks outside of China.
Tankers running Chinese New Year supply run to PLA (Army) garrison at Nanpang Island
Saturday, September 09, 2017
Winter is here. In addition to cold political rhetoric, the world also
witnessed the power of Little-phat Night King’s fully operational
Intercontinental Ballistic Dragon (ICBD). It is now up to the PLA to
mount a possible offensive defense.
In the following weeks, this blog will start posting more Northern
China (especially on the Northern Theater Command) centric updates.
Hopefully it will feature insight into the military options available to
the King in Beijing. One thing's for certain, the PLA can expect no
Lannister army marching shoulder-to-shoulder with them -- Cersei tweets
loud-and big but all she ever wanted is to build a wall facing the south
(too late, no?). Joking aside, the 28,500 strong Lannister army can’t
mount a “boots on the ground” across the DMZ without completing an
prolonged air campaign first.
A note to the King in Beijing, A Lannister always pays his debts. It stands at $1.15 trillion in Aug 2017 and counting.
RRU -- the King in Beijing can count on 2 brigades of PLAN Marine (the third brigade is far from battle-ready), up to 9 airborne brigades
and dozens of SpOs units. Given China's advanced transportation
networks coupled with their high-readiness rate, majority of those RRU
could reach the Yalu River delta area within 10 days. This rapid troop
movement capacity has been demonstrated during rescue phase of the 2008
Sichuan earthquake 9 years ago. An assessment of PLA's response to the 2008 earthquake
is here. However, RRU are essentially light infantry units -- albeit
well-trained -- with limited light direct and in-direct armor and fire
support. They also lack heavy artillery and engineering assets to
overcome fortified defensive positions and mountainous terrain dotted
across the entire area-of-operations. They should know, they were there
during the 1950s.
Furthermore, unlike their Western counterparts, close tactical air
support is still an luxury item few units have access to. Therefore,
those RRU will not advance without support from local "heavies". But
if they do, they will be "all in".
When it is commissioned, the PLAN will command nine Type 903 replenishment ships (20,000 tons each). Furthermore, they can count on:
-- One Type091 (48,000 tons) with another Type091 under construction.
-- Six Type094 (15,000 tons)
-- One Type908 (37,000 tons)
-- Two Type905 (21,750 tons)
As the PLAN increases frequency and duration of her deployments, it is natural to build a more robust supporting infrastructure to accommodate the new demand.
One of the newly commissioned PLAN Marine units is seen here training with ZBL09 wheeled IFV.. Perhaps they are just waiting for their AAAV to arrive, or they are not intended to "storm the beach" like their 1st and 2nd Marine Brigade counterparts but rather fan-out rapidly after a beachhead is secured. But one thing is certain -- they are willing to trade armor protection for speed.
As a side note, the PLAN Marine stationed in Djibouti here is also sporting the same wheel based ZBL09
ZTL09 Wheeled light tank is also spotted
Saturday, January 14, 2017
ZTL09 8x8 Wheeled Light Tank to the PLAN Marine??
ZTL09 8x8 Wheeled Light Tanks sporting the now-famous "Blue Smurf" camo
were spotted in Sanya City, near the HQ of the PLAN Marine. Rumor has
it that they are now getting those wheeled new toys to increase their
mobility for MOOTW and non-amphibious operations. Time will tell.