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"Chinese Korean War Platoon / Support TO&E" Topic

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Oddball20 Mar 2012 1:14 p.m. PST

What is the TO&E for a Chinese platoon in the Korean War? What kind of support weapons could they count on?

Thank you in advance.

Dennis030220 Mar 2012 2:34 p.m. PST

I've been looking for accurate info for years without much luck.

But I did come up with a bit of info . A infantry squad would be ten men, three three man cells and a squad leader.
There would be three squads to a platoon and a platoon hqts made up of a platoon leader, an assistant platoon leader and a runner.

There were also squads made up of men equipped with jusr hand granades. And even squads armed with sub machine guns.

Small arms were a logistical nightmare. Chinese units early in the war were equipped with a mixed bag of Japanese, American, British and Chinese made small arms.

As to support weapons, I've read of Japanese machine guns, Maxim machine guns, Cezch made Brens, copies of US bazookazs, Russian anti tank rifles and American recoiless rifles (75 and 57 MM).

Mortars were 60mm and 81 mm as well as Japanese mortars. Artillery was a mix of US 75s,105s and Japanese stuff.

Post 1951 Russian aid came into play and Russian equipment bcame standard

Beyond this I've never been able to find anything else out. If anyone does please post.

number4 Inactive Member21 Mar 2012 6:10 p.m. PST

Chinese use of western equipment was standardized by division to ease the logistical burden so one division might be armed with Japanese weapons while another would have US (WWII lend lease and captured) and a third might have German (ex Chinese Nationalist purchased) arms.

The US equipped several divisions of Nationalists, and all most all that gear ended up with the reds (whole divisions defected completely intact). The Chinese manufactured Mauser rifles and pistols, and one arsenal even made M1927 Thompsons.

I believe the battalion had an assault platoon armed with grenades only, and an SMG platoon along Soviet lines.

number4 Inactive Member21 Mar 2012 6:27 p.m. PST

Just found this:

The structure of the infantry company of the Chinese People's Volunteers )People's Liberation Army) that crossed the Yalu in November 1950 had three platoons of infantry each of three squads of 12 men, a machine gun platoon with three belt-fed machine guns and a mortar platoon of two 60mm mortars.

The CPV units that faced the United States Marine Corps did not have the machine gun platoon and although the authorised strength was around 852 men for the battalion its actual strength was around 700 men. However there were belt fed machine guns available for use at the company level. After one assault the USMC captured 10 heavy machine guns, seven light machine guns, 12 Thompson sub-machine guns, 76 rifles, four pistols and 500 hand grenades. This shows that belt fed machine guns were pushed forward in an assault and were left after the repulse of the attack.

In October 1951 the PLA and CPV infantry company was reduced in size to three platoons and the 60 mm mortar squad. Each platoon had three squads of 12 men and the company strength was reduced from 190 to 151. This was based on the Soviet model, the result of losses sustained in Korea, plus the need to simplify administration. The previous light machine gun squad in the platoon was disbanded and the light machine guns became part of the three remaining rifle squads. With the influx of Soviet weapons the amount of automatic weapons was increased. The PLA and CPV infantry company was actually stronger in numbers and close-range firepower than its equivalent in the British Army.

The CPV quickly found that this structure was clearly insufficient against the firepower of the United Nations in Korea and the infantry company was again restructured, more in line with that prevailing at the start of the Korean War. The infantry company commander needed to bring his support weapons with him as a lack of communications equipment meant he could rarely obtain on call artillery support in the defence and none during the attack. The People's Liberation Army and the Chinese People's Volunteer infantry company now became a self-contained task force. It was also a notably ‘square organization' compared to the Soviet triangular model. It was comprised of three rifle platoons, one machine gun platoon and one rocket (bazooka) platoon. Each platoon was still comprised of three squads of 12 men, and the company's strength rose to 201. The battalion was now comprised of four rifle companies, one 82 mm mortar company, one heavy machine gun company, one recoilless rifle platoon and one communications platoon. The battalion at full strength had 1,068 officers and men. The 60mm mortars were removed as it was a defensive structure with landline communications to the rear enabling on-call fire support

Dennis030222 Mar 2012 3:29 p.m. PST


Thanks I've been looking for this literally for years

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