China's Amphibious Assault IFV/Light tank ZBD 2000

Discussion in 'Navy' started by tanlixiang28776, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. TerraN_EmpirE
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    TerraN_EmpirE Tyrant King

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    I disagree, there are a number of different Marine models and although yes I am familiar with the USMC. I am not trying to see that in PLA uniforms.
    First and most obvious is the fact that the PLAMC lacks a air arm. Well the USMC operates a extensive one.
    Second the USMC vehicle set places a emphasis on carrying more men and material the firepower. The PLAMC deploys amphibious tanks and IFVs currently lacking from the USMC and known development maps.
    The ZBD series vehicles at the root of this thread seat a small number of infantry vs the US models in the same roles.
    The USMC Operates MBTs and Artillery well the PLAMC lacks both.

    When I made my opinion I used these as a basis. I concluded that looking at these stopping at the beaches is not there goal. Had that been there goal why use amphibious vehicles at all why not just armed landing craft?
    Why arm there vehicles to provide close fire support with IFVs and amphibious tanks? My answer is that on a island the Vehicles allow rapid landing and assaults to selected objectives beyond the beach with the aim of interception of reaction forces and delaying counter attack. Well secondary PLA Amphibious landings take place. To do that the PLAMC has to have elements move beyond the beach and penetrate into territory. Because of the light weight of there vehicles they cannot afford to remain in one place fore long as Vehicle of 20 tones are fine against infantry units but butter for the hot knife of heavier weapons. That said they cannot assault far inland and against larger land masses would likely stop a few dozen miles in due to lack of artillery support beyond that provided by mortars, and naval shipping. For truly extended operations yes they wait for the Amphibious landing PLA regulars. But simply stopping at the beach is giving the enemy fixed targets to attack with artillery.
     
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  2. solarz
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    solarz Colonel

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People's_Liberation_Army_Marine_Corps

    From what I can garner from the wikipedia article, the present PLAMC is a small, relatively recent reincarnation of a former organization that was primarily tasked with assaulting islands, and it seems this objective has remained the same.

    Like the USMC, the PLAMC is an elite, rapid response force. They would probably be quite suitable for retaking small islands, but like any elite force, would not be suitable for conducting larger campaigns without the support of regular forces.

    I think the most likely scenario of PLAMC deployment would be something like the Battle of Paracel islands in 1974, where an enemy force decided to take over an island by force, and I believe the PLAMC has been outfitted with that kind of scenario in mind.

    Other scenarios could include anti-piracy and counter-terrorism.
     
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  3. plawolf
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    plawolf Brigadier

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    How many hours and lives will it take marines to fight a few dozen miles beyond a beach? Hours at best, potentially days and a signifiant casualty rate is what PLA high command expects.

    This is where I think your unintentional assumptions and comparisons with the USMC lies - not in the equipment so much as the all round friendly support and quality of opposition.

    China is expecting to fight a near-peer or even opponent with some technological and local numerical superiority, who's troops and positions are largely fresh and un-degraded before the amphibious assault is launched.

    The USMC is expecting to fight a hopelessly outmatched foe who have been massively softened up for weeks or months already.

    As such, what you expect to be a near unopposed landing for the USMC, will likely involve a hell of a lot of hard, bloody fighting for the PLANMC.

    For the USMC, controlling the beach is almost a pre-condition to launching the amphibious assault, whereas for the PLANMC, their main job will be to take the beach and hold it.

    It is only in this context that it makes sense that the USMC are trained and organised to win entire wars by themselves, whereas the PLANMC are trained and geared to expect army amphibious support within a few dozen minutes of them first hitting a beach, at most an hour.

    Basically, after PLANMC hit the beach, and as soon as enemy defenders are pushed beyond direct line of site of the beach (maybe even before), the tank landers and transports of the regular army will start beaching to unload the heavy armour and other goodies that the marines lack.

    The amphibious tanks and heavier guns of the PLANMC IFVs are primarily intended to bust bunkers, provide medium range mobile artillery, counter-battery support and defensive tank killer duties.

    Their primary jobs are to take the beach and push as far as they can until they encounter heavy resistance, then hold the enemy there for the hour or so it will take regular army to arrive in sufficient numbers to punch through those enemy defences.

    Its amphibious tanks and heavy gun armed IFVs are glass cannons, able to punch way above their weight, but lacking the armour thickness to mount a true armoured charge against a prepared foe without massive naval and air support. That makes them classic defensive platforms once off the beach and away from direct naval fire support, not blitzkrieg chargers.

    The PLA as a whole are fairly conservative in their estimation of their own fighting prowess. Basically, as far as the PLANMC is concerned, its a job well done if the marines are able to push the enemy off the beach and up to the first ridge line away from the beach and hold them there, so enemy forces do not have direct line of sight to easily target the vulnerable army tank and troop landers.

    That is what they are preparing their marines to do first and foremost.

    Blue camo for assaulting the beach is pretty self-explanatory, but if you think about it, with the PLANMC supposed to mainly hold the first ridge line off the beach, with their tanks, IVFs and troops using the crest of the ridge as much as possible to give themselves the best cover. To a counter-attacking defensive force, what they will see are turrets and heads sticking out above the ridge line, backdropped by the sky and sea - as such the PLANMC's camo pattern makes a great deal more sense.

    Enemy artillery shelling the beach are the responsibility of the air force and navy initially, with the army amphibious forces taking over once they land their own artillery and counter-battery radars.
     
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  4. weig2000
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    weig2000 Junior Member

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    Good discussions about PLANMC and USMC. I think the structures and missions of PLANMC and USMC are quite different although they do overlap somewhat. The PLANMC is part of PLAN, and its missions have been traditionally limited and modest (taking beaches and small islands); whereas the USMC is almost a self-contained military branch, able to launch much larger-scale wars globally rather independently. These missions have been shaped by their respective experiences and histories.

    That being said, I think the PLANMC is gradually changing and enlarging its missions, and indeed moving closer to the USMC model. This is reflected in the assets they're acquiring (and to be acquired). Historically, the PLANMC has set their sights on the small islands off the Chinese coast, and SCS reefs/islands. I don't even think the MC has been given a large role in a Taiwan contingency, which is really the job of LPA Amphibious group. With China's expanding global interest and footprints, it is very reasonable to expect that PLANMC to become more expeditionary in their missions. Personally, I think it makes sense down the road to combine the Army Amphibious Units and the Navy Marine Corp to form a more beefy MC, that is, closer to the USMC model.

    The recent training of PLANMC in the Gobi Dessert, along with Army units, has raised a lot of interest, and has IMO given hints about the potential future direction of the PLANMC.

    Here is an article from the National Interest commenting on the recent developments and likely trajectory of the PLANMC. One of the authors is a retired US Marine Colonel. I found the analysis quite rational.

    Can China Copy the U.S. Marine Corps?

    A superpower can never have too many elite forces.

    Grant NewshamKoh Swee Lean Collin
    January 29, 2016

    Much has been reported about the recent structural reforms undertaken by China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA)—the end goal being a leaner and meaner military force, capable of undertaking a broad spectrum of missions under modern, high-tech conditions. Part of this drive towards a “new-age” PLA has been efforts to modernize the PLA Marine Corps (PLAMC), which notably carried out its latest winter training in the Gobi Desert, in Xinjiang.

    Reported by Chinese sources as a combined-arms, live-firing war game involving over ten different PLAMC branches, this exercise featured state-of-the-art equipment, as observed in official photos released by Chinese media. The exercise was designed to enhance the PLAMC’s ability to operate in a real war situation, under day and night conditions. Besides conventional combat maneuvers against “Blue Force” adversaries, the exercise also included counterterrorism training.

    To be certain, these PLAMC winter maneuvers are just one of several such training drills conducted under various climatic conditions. One such instance is Exercise Jungle, whose 2015 iteration was staged in the tropical southwestern province of Yunnan. The varied PLAMC training syllabus can be deemed a natural expansion of its capabilities and missions, considering that it is traditionally tasked to undertake operations against Taiwan in particular.

    But there is more to it than that. In recent years the PLAMC is not merely maintaining its readiness to mount an amphibious invasion across the Taiwan Strait (or conduct other operations in the context of the East and South China Sea disputes). Rather, it is bulking up in order to give the Chinese political leadership another flexible tool for responding to contingencies not just within China’s immediate East Asian region, but also beyond.

    Taking a Leaf from the USMC Playbook?

    [Omitted]

    Building “Chinese ARGs and ESGs”?

    [Omitted]

    “Out-of-Area” CT Connection

    [Omitted]

    Potential Ramifications

    The recent PLAMC force developments constitute a huge change from the last sixty years, when USN/USMC forces were the “only show in town” in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, especially East Asian waters. Consider the potential ramifications of such a Chinese amphibious force maintaining a constant presence in, say, Southeast Asia, Beijing’s erstwhile “southern periphery” that is of such great political, economic and military significance. If one can observe that the Thirty-First MEU only patrols in the region a couple times annually, there is no reason why the PLA cannot have an equivalent force (or two) maintaining an even more regular presence, taking advantage of its geographical proximity.

    And one should expect the PLA to use its own brand of ARGs and ESGs for various expeditionary-type operations, such as noncombatant evacuation (a role the PLA demonstrated in Yemen in March–April 2015), humanitarian assistance and disaster relief in the region and further afield. In the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in November 2013, the Chinese—though acting partly out of spite to punish Manila—could only belatedly deploy a hospital ship, while watching the Americans and Japanese reap political benefits from humanitarian operations in the Philippines. A PLAMC/PLAN expeditionary amphibious force will allow China to more effectively conduct “disaster diplomacy” in the future.

    One must also consider that the next time a local ethnic Chinese populace in Southeast Asia gets roughed up, as has happened before (in Indonesia in the late 1990s, and possibly in Malaysia following a recent racial uproar), the PLA might not just watch from a distance. A Chinese ARG/ESG, primed for overseas “gunboat diplomacy” on short notice, is an intimidating prospect. Therefore, the PLAMC’s recent developments and likely future advances in its expeditionary capabilities mark a significant change in the regional security dynamic. Without forgetting other aspects of the PLAN buildup, such as its vaunted aircraft carrier program, one should not overlook the importance of China’s amphibious forces buildup.
     
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  5. by78
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    by78 Colonel

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    New camo, and it works well.

    (2500 x 1685)
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. SinoSoldier
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    SinoSoldier Colonel

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    It's a wonder it took the Chinese 25 years to realize that sea camouflage doesn't work in woodland areas.
     
  7. by78
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    by78 Colonel

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    Not necessarily... ZBD-2000 is at its most vulnerable when it's in the water due to low speed and a lack of maneuverability: they are essentially sitting ducks. So it makes sense that PLAN would want a camo that can best offset this vulnerability. Once the vehicle is on land, it's much harder to hit.

    Now of course, back in the day when the blue camo was introduced, China's ability to provide close-in air support for beach landings wasn't nearly where it is today, so the blue camo was even more important.
     
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  8. by78
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    by78 Colonel

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    And I would like to add that the blue digital camo for the Marines uniform was completely unnecessary and impractical; the Chinese marines will not be swimming to shore.
     
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  9. vesicles
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    vesicles Major

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    Wow! That's a nice camo. It took me a minute to find all the vehicles in the pic...
     
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  10. Equation
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    Equation Lieutenant General

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    The "white" paint on these vehicles looks like it can be peel off at any time to match with the rugged terrain, vegetation and weather. This is especially useful as the winter months ends and more green vegetation starts to grow back. Therefore for long term deployment and mission there is no need to repaint the entire vehicle to match with the local vegetation and terrain contrasting colors as well.
     
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