Sino-Vietnamese war

VivaVietnamm

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The Sino-Vietnamese War (Vietnamese: Chiến tranh biên giới Việt-Trung; simplified Chinese: 中越战争; traditional Chinese: 中越戰爭; pinyin: zhōng-yuè zhànzhēng), also known as the Third Indochina War, was a brief border war fought between the People's Republic of China and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in early 1979. China launched the offensive in response to Vietnam's invasion and occupation of Cambodia in 1978 (which ended the reign of the Chinese-backed Khmer Rouge),.[7] Chinese Vice-premier Deng Xiaoping saw this as a Soviet attempt "to extend its evil tentacles to Southeast Asia and...carry out expansion there.", reflecting the long-standing Sino-Soviet split.[8] As the former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger notes: "Whatever the shortcomings of its execution, the Chinese campaign reflected a serious, long-term strategic analysis."[9]

The Chinese entered northern Vietnam and captured some of the bordering cities. On March 6, 1979, China declared that the gate to Hanoi was open and that their punitive mission had been achieved. Chinese forces retreated back across the Vietnamese border, into China. Both China and Vietnam claimed victory in the last of the Indochina Wars of the 20th century; as Vietnamese troops remained in Cambodia until 1989 it can be said that China failed to achieve the goal of dissuading Vietnam from involvement in Cambodia. However, Moscow surely realized that any attempt at expanding its foothold in Southeast Asia would have involved risk of military confrontation with China. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Sino-Vietnamese border was finalized.

China demonstrated to its Cold War adversary, the Soviet Union, that they were unable to protect their new Vietnamese ally.[10] Following worsening relations between the Soviet Union and China as a result of the Sino-Soviet split, as many as 1.5 million Chinese troops were stationed along the Soviet-Chinese border, in preparation for a full-scale war.

The reason cited for the attack was the mistreatment of Vietnam's ethnic Chinese minority and the Vietnamese occupation of the Spratly Islands (claimed by China). To prevent Soviet intervention on Vietnam's behalf, Deng warned Moscow the next day that China was prepared for a full-scale war against the Soviet Union; in preparation for this conflict, China put all of its troops along the Sino-Soviet border on an emergency war alert, set up a new military command in Xinjiang, and even evacuated an estimated 300,000 civilians from the Sino-Soviet border.[26] In addition, the bulk of China's active forces (as many as one-and-a-half million troops) were stationed along China's borders with the Soviet Union.[27]

In response to China's attack, the Soviet Union sent several naval vessels and initiated a Soviet arms airlift to Vietnam. However the Soviet Union felt that there was simply no way that they could directly support Vietnam against China; the distances were too great to be an effective ally, and any sort of reinforcements would have to cross territory controlled by China or U.S. allies. The only realistic option would be to indirectly restart the simmering border war with China in the north. Vietnam was important to Soviet policy but not enough for the Soviets to go to war over. When Moscow did not intervene, Beijing publicly proclaimed that the Soviet Union had broken its numerous promises to assist Vietnam. The Soviet Union's failure to support Vietnam emboldened China to announce on April 3, 1979, that it intended to terminate the 1950 Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Alliance, and Mutual Assistance.[23]

18-war-dang-upi.jpg


Deng Xiaoping bowed down and begged help from US's president for Intel from U.S. spy satellites, and the KH-9 Big Bird photographic reconnaissance satellite before attacking VIetnam

Chinese forces

On February 17, a Chinese force of about 200,000 supported by 200 Type 59, Type 62, and Type 63 tanks from the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) entered northern Vietnam.[28] The Chinese force consisted of units from the Kunming Military Region (later abolished), Chengdu Military Region, Wuhan Military Region (later abolished) and Guangzhou Military Region, but commanded by the headquarters of Kunming Military Region on the western front and Guangzhou Military Region in the eastern front.

Some troops engaged in this war, especially engineering units, railway corps, logistical units and antiaircraft units, had been assigned to assist North Vietnam in its war against South Vietnam just a few years earlier during the Vietnam War. Contrary to the belief that over 600,000 Chinese troops entered North Vietnam, the actual number was only 200,000.[citation needed] However, 600,000 Chinese troops were mobilized, of which 400,000 were deployed away from their original bases during the one month conflict.[citation needed] Around 200 tanks (specifically Type 59s) were also deployed[citation needed].

The Chinese troop deployments were observed by U.S. spy satellites, and the KH-9 Big Bird photographic reconnaissance satellite played an important role.[citation needed] In his state visit to the U.S. in 1979, the Chinese paramount leader Deng Xiaoping was presented with this information and asked to confirm the numbers. He replied that the information was completely accurate. After this public confirmation in the U.S., the domestic Chinese media were finally allowed to report on these deployments.

Chinese order of battle
  • Guangxi Direction (East Front) commanded by the Front Headquarter of Guangzhou Military Region in Nanning. Commander-Xu Shiyou, Political Commissar-Xiang Zhonghua, Chief of Staff-Zhou Deli
    • North Group: Commander-Ou Zhifu(Deputy Commander of Guangzhou Military Region)
      • 41st Corps Commander-Zhang Xudeng, Political Commissar-Liu Zhanrong
        • 121st Infantry Division Commander-Zheng Wenshui
        • 122nd Infantry Division Commander-Li Xinliang
        • 123rd Infantry Division Commander-Li Peijiang
    • South Group: Commander-Wu Zhong(Deputy Commander of Guangzhou Military Region)
    • East Group: Commander-Jiang Xieyuan(Deputy Commander of Guangzhou Military Region)
      • 55th Corps Commander-Zhu Yuehua, Temporary Political Commissar-Guo Changzeng
        • 163rd Infantry Division Commander-Bian Guixiang, Political Commissar-Wu Enqing, Chief of Staff-Xing Shizhong
        • 164th Infantry Division Commander-Xiao Xuchu (also Deputy Commander of 55th Corps)
        • 165th Infantry Division
      • 1st Artillery Division
    • Reserve Group (came from Wuhan Military Region except 50th Corps from Chengdu Military Region), Deputy Commander-Han Huaizhi(Commander of 54th Corps)
      • 43rd Corp Commander-Zhu Chuanyu, Temporary Political Commissar-Zhao Shengchang
      • 54th CorpsCommander-Han Huaizhi (pluralism), Political Commissar-Zhu Zhiwei
        • 160th Infantry Division (commanded by 41st Corp in this war) Commander-Zhang Zhixin, Political Commissar-Li Zhaogui
        • 161st Infantry Division
        • 162nd Infantry Division Commander-Li Jiulong
      • 50th Corps Temporary Commander-Liu Guangtong, Political Commissar-Gao Xingyao
      • 20th Corps(only dispatched the 58th Division into the war)
    • Guangxi Military Region (as a provincial military region) Commander-Zhao Xinran Chief of Staff-Yin Xi
      • 1st Regiment of Frontier Defense in Youyiguan Pass
      • 2nd Regiment of Frontier Defense in Baise District
      • 3rd Regiment of Frontier Defense in Fangcheng County
      • The Independent Infantry Division of Guangxi Military Region
    • Air Force of Guangzhou Military Region(armed patrol in the sky of Guangxi, did not see combat)
      • 7th Air Force Corp
      • 13th Air Force Division (aerotransport unit came from Hubei province)
    • 70th Antiaircraft Artillery Division
    • The 217 Fleet of South Sea Fleet
    • 8th Navy Aviation Division
    • The Independent Tank Regiment of Guangzhou Military Region
    • 83rd Bateau Boat Regiment
    • 84th Bateau Boat Regiment
  • Yunnan Direction (the West Front) commanded by the Front Headquarter of Kunming Military Region in Kaiyuan. Commander-Yang Dezhi, Political Commissar-Liu Zhijian, Chief of Staff-Sun Ganqing
    • 11th Corp(consisted of two divisions) Commander-Chen Jiagui, Political Commissar-Zhang Qi
      • 31st Infantry Division
      • 32nd Infantry Division
    • 13th Corps(camed from Chengdu Military Region) Commander-Yan Shouqing, Political Commissar-Qiao Xueting
      • 37th Infantry Division
      • 38th Infantry Division
      • 39th Infantry Division
    • 14th CorpCommander-Zhang Jinghua, Political Commissar-Fan Xinyou
      • 40th Infantry Division
      • 41st Infantry Division
      • 42nd Infantry Division
    • 149th Infantry Division (from Chengdu Military Region, belonged to 50th Corps, assigned to Yunnan Direction during the war)
    • Yunnan Military Region(as a provincial military region)
      • 11th Regiment of Frontier Defense in Maguan County
      • 12th Regiment of Frontier Defense in Malipo County
      • 13th Regiment of Frontier Defense in
      • 14th Regiment of Frontier Defense in
      • The Independent Infantry Division of Yunnan Military Region commanded by 11th Corps in the war
    • 65th Antiaircraft Artillery Division
    • 4th Artillery Division
    • Independent Tank Regiment of Kunming Military Region
    • 86th Bateau Boat Regiment
    • 23rd Logistic Branch consisted of five army service stations, six hospitals, eleven medical establishments)
    • 17th Automobile Regiment commanded by 13th Corps during the war
    • 22nd Automobile Regiment
    • 5th Air Force Corps
      • 44th Air Force Division (fighter unit)
      • Independent unit of 27th Air Force Division
      • 15th Air Force Antiaircraft Artillery Division

tobe continued

 

VivaVietnamm

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Vietnamese forces
The Vietnamese government claimed they left only a force of about 70,000 including several army regular divisions in its northern area. However, the Chinese claimed to have encountered more than twice this number. During the war, Vietnamese forces also used American military equipment captured during the Vietnam War.

Course of the war
The Chinese entered Northern Vietnam and advanced quickly about 15–20 kilometers into Vietnam, with fighting mainly occurring in the provinces of Cao Bằng, Lào Cai and Lạng Sơn. The Vietnamese avoided mobilizing their regular divisions, and held back some 300,000 troops for the defence of Hanoi. The Vietnamese forces tried to avoid direct combat, and often used guerrilla tactics.

The initial Chinese attack soon lost its momentum, and a new wave of attack was sent in. Eight Chinese divisions joined the battle, and captured some of the northernmost cities in Vietnam. After capturing the northern heights above Lang Son, the Chinese surrounded and paused in front of the city in order to lure the Vietnamese into reinforcing it with units from Cambodia. This had been the main strategic ploy in the Chinese war plan as Deng did not want to risk an escalation involving the Soviets. The PVA high command, after a tip-off from Soviet satellite intelligence, was able to see through the trap[citation needed], however, and committed reserves only to Hanoi.

Once this became clear to the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), the war was practically over. An assault was still mounted, but the Vietnamese only committed one PVA regiment defending the city.[citation needed] After three days of bloody house-to-house fighting, Lang Son fell on March 6. The PLA then took the southern heights above Lang Son[29] and occupied Sapa. The PLA claimed to have crushed several of the Vietnamese regular units.[5]

The Chinese now resumed their attacks aimed at the major provincial capitals and key communication centres in the border hinter land. Major battles developed at Cao Bằng, Lang Son, Hoang Lien Son, Lai Chau and Quang Ninh. The aim of these attacks was to draw in the regular Vietnamese Army formations and inflict heavy attrition on them through classical "meat-grinder" operations. There were fierce attacks and counterattacks. In Lang Son the Chinese launched 17 counterattacks to regain one objective.

By late last week of February, the Vietnamese had still not committed any of their regular divisions which were being held back for the defence of Hanoi. They had also not pulled out any of their 150,000 troops in Cambodia. In the provincial capital the Vietnamese adopted their favourite tactic: they withdrew from the towns into the adjoining hills. As the Chinese formations surged in they were engaged from all sides from the surrounding hills and quite severely mauled. At the same time, due to the crude tactics and strategy of the PLA command, PLA units also suffered extensive casualties themselves. The combination of high casualties, a badly organized command, harsh Vietnamese resistance and the risk of the Soviets entering the conflict stopped the Chinese from going any farther.[citation needed]

On March 6, China declared that the gate to Hanoi was open and that their punitive mission had been achieved. On the way back to the Chinese border, the PLA destroyed all local infrastructure and housing and looted all useful equipment and resources (including livestock), which were mainly donated by China to support Vietnam's economy prior to the war, severely weakening the economy of Vietnam's northernmost provinces.[5] The PLA crossed the border back into China on March 16. Both sides declared victory with China claiming to have crushed the Vietnamese resistance and Vietnam claiming that China had fought mostly against border militias.

Aftermath
The aftermath of the war had different effects. China and Vietnam each lost thousands of troops, and China lost 3,446 million yuan in overhead, which delayed completion of their 1979–80 economic plan.[30] To reduce Vietnam's military capability against China, the Chinese implemented a "scorched-earth policy" while returning to China, causing extensive damage to the Vietnamese countryside and infrastructure.[31] Although Vietnam continued to occupy Cambodia, China successfully mobilized international opposition to the occupation, rallying such leaders as Cambodia's deposed king Norodom Sihanouk, Cambodian anticommunist leader Son Sann, and high-ranking members of the Khmer Rouge to deny the pro-Vietnam regime in Cambodia diplomatic recognition beyond the Soviet bloc. China improved relations with ASEAN by promising protection to Thailand and Singapore against "Vietnamese aggression". In contrast, Vietnam's decreasing prestige in the region led it to be more dependent on the Soviet Union, to which it leased a naval base at Cam Ranh Bay.[32]

Chinese casualties
The number of casualties during the war is disputed. Vietnamese source claimed the PLA had suffered 62,500 total casualties; while Chinese democracy activist Wei Jingsheng told western media in 1980 that the Chinese troops had suffered 9,000 deaths and about 10,000 wounded during the war. New Chinese sources indicated that China only suffered 6,954 lost.[33]

cuoc-chien-bien-gioi-1979-nam-trong-chien-luoc-10-nam-cua-trung-quoc.jpg


104 PLA Mountain Infantry Troops surrendered after falling into VN's ambushes in 1979

Vietnamese casualties
Like their counterparts in the Chinese government, the Vietnamese government has never announced any information on its actual military casualties. China estimated Vietnamese side had 42,000 soldiers killed and 70,000 militias also killed by the Chinese PLA.[34] The Nhan Dan newspaper[35] the Central Organ of the Communist Party of Vietnam claimed that Vietnam suffered more than 10,000 civilian deaths during the Chinese invasion[35] and earlier on May 17, 1979, reported statistics on heavy losses of industry and agriculture properties.[35]


Even Chinese also admit that VN's forces used many obsolete WW2 weapons against PLA's invasion in 1979, but still could drove PLA back.

Other skirmishes

Border skirmishes continued throughout the 1980s, including a significant skirmish in April 1984. Armed conflict only ended in 1989 after the Vietnamese agreed to fully withdraw from Cambodia. This conflict also saw the first use of the Type 81 assault rifle by the Chinese and a naval battle over the Spratly Islands in 1988 known as the Johnson South Reef Skirmish. In 1999 after many years of negotiations, China and Vietnam signed a border pact, though the line of demarcation remained secret.[36]

There was an adjustment of the land border, resulting in Vietnam giving China part of its land which were lost during the battle, including the Ai Nam Quan Gate which served as the traditional border marker and entry point between Vietnam and China, which caused widespread frustration within Vietnam. Vietnam's official news service reported the implementation of the new border around August 2001. Again in January 2009 the border demarcation with markers was officially completed, signed by Deputy Foreign Minister Vu Dung on the Vietnamese side and his Chinese counterpart, Wu Dawei, on the Chinese side.[37] Both the Paracel (Hoàng Sa: Vietnamese) (Xīshā: Chinese) and Spratly (Trường Sa: Vietnamese) (Nansha: Chinese) islands remain a point of contention.[38]

During the Sino-Soviet split, strained relations between China and the Soviet Union resulted in strained relations between China and the pro-Soviet Afghan Communist regime. China and Afghanistan had neutral relations with each other during the King's rule. When the pro-Soviet Afghan Communists seized power in Afghanistan in 1978, relations between China and the Afghan communists quickly turned hostile. The Afghan pro-Soviet communists supported the Vietnamese during the Sino-Vietnamese War and blamed China for supporting Afghan anti-communist militants. China responded to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan by supporting the Afghan Mujahideen and ramping up their military presence near Afghanistan in Xinjiang. China acquired military equipment from the United States to defend itself from Soviet attack.[39]

In response to the Soviet threat level, the Chinese People's Liberation Army trained and supported the Afghan Mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. China moved its training camps for the mujahideen from Pakistan into China itself. Hundreds of millions worth of anti-aircraft missiles, rocket launchers and machine guns were given to the Mujahideen by the Chinese. Chinese military advisors and army troops were present with the Mujahideen during training.[40]

 

VivaVietnamm

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Border War 1979: China's "Sea of People/Human wave" Tactics
10/02/2017 04:10 GMT+7

The number of Chinese soldiers and weapons used in the "sea of people/Human wave" tactic has not been unified. According to many research documents, this is China's largest military mobilization since the Korean War.

"If you are not good, you will also hit Chinese soldiers"

On the morning of February 17, 1979, two Chinese infantry divisions, supported by a tank regiment and six artillery regiments, entered the gate of Dong Dang, Lang Son. Before the invaders' tactics of spreading "sea of people/Human wave", the local armed forces and soldiers fought fiercely and died heroically. Lang Son Police is one of the forces that have tenaciously participated in the war to protect every inch of the homeland and the people. After the war, from a few hundred people, they were left with only 6 people, all of whom were awarded the title of heroes.

Colonel Trieu Quang Dien, Head of Criminal Investigation Department, Lang Son Provincial Police, hero of the People's Armed Forces recalls that moment "if you can't shoot well, you can still hit Chinese soldiers" to describe the "sea of people/Human wave" campaign. "of the invaders. During the battle of Dong Dang, he and his comrades fought fiercely, then gradually retreated to Temple Mau cave (about 500m from Dong Dang fortress) to protect several hundred people who were sheltering.

vi-sao-viet-nam-chien-thang-quan-xam-luoc-trung-quoc-1.jpg


PLA troop attacking VN with Human wave tactic

In his recollection, tensions at the border were persistent. Before that, China sent scouts to plant people to do mass mobilization in Dong Dang, inciting the people. Also at this time, the influx of Chinese people back home made the border area always tense. At that time, our regular army units were fighting in Cambodia, and according to international law regular army forces had to be stationed a few dozen trees from the border, so the local police, militia and border guards were main fighting force.

When the Chinese attacked Lang Son, Private Trieu Quang Dien had just finished his training and returned to Dong Dang. He and two other comrades, Vi Van Cao and Tran Van Thai, had just returned from patrolling, but before they could recline, the enemy artillery fired fiercely. All three were mobilized to the area of Tem Mau cave to protect people and support other forces. Mr. Dien still remembers clearly, within the first hour, his squad had sacrificed most of it. Two people from the same group, Vi Van Cao and Tran Van Thai, were killed by artillery right in front of his eyes. The sea of people and tanks, Chinese artillery shells overwhelmed Dong Dang and then flooded Lang Son city.

On the same day that China rushed to the northern border, regular soldier Nguyen Van Binh was on vacation in Dong Dang, Lang Son. The sudden attack of the invaders forced him to become the commander of the local forces to fight and guide the people to take shelter in Temple Mau cave and Dong Dang fortress, each cave can hold 300-400 people.


Grab every border stone

Remembering the Vietnam-China border war of 1978-1979, the people of Lang Son cannot forget the story of heroic martyr Le Dinh Chinh, the first armed soldier of the People's Public Security to fall at the front of Cao Loc district.

On August 25, 1978, Chinese troops crossed the border to Vietnam and assaulted cadres, women and local people. Le Dinh Chinh fought back with his bare hands and was cut down by a group of plainclothes Chinese people with a machete.

Mr. Nguyen Xuan Thinh, a soldier serving in Binh Gia district, Lang Son, former sergeant of the tank unit, 14th Division, the first main unit to approach Lang Son city, said, for a long time, The Chinese side continued to be aggressive. Forces across the border in plainclothes continuously intruded into Vietnam's territory, moved landmarks, and threatened people in border areas. However, our side tried to resist but was not allowed to use armed forces and military equipment.

Mr. Thinh's tank unit was ordered to support from the outside, because of the unique mountain road, it was difficult to deploy the tank battle. Mr. Thinh recalled, when he was scouting the area of Lang Son town, he saw with his own eyes half of the mountain that had just been destroyed by Chinese soldiers. That is Khon Khoang cave, the refuge of two nearby Tay and Nung villages. Fortunately, half a day earlier, all the people in the cave were moved to another location.

A few days after China occupied Lang Son and 5 bordering provinces, destroying hospitals, schools, roads and bridges; killing tens of thousands of Vietnamese civilians, the local self-defense forces and the main Vietnamese army fought back tenaciously. Khanh Khe Bridge, in Cao Loc district, Lang Son is the evidence of fierce fighting between Vietnam's 377th Division, preventing Chinese troops from entering the territory.
(Khanh Khe Bridge is located on National Highway 1B connecting Dong Dang with Bac Son district, Thai Nguyen city and Hanoi).

Having fought many bloody battles for every inch of land in the high points around Lang Son, the Chinese army began to surround the town and simultaneously attacked in many directions. On the afternoon of the 4th, a Chinese army crossed the Ky Cung river, occupied the 340 high point and stormed into Lang Son town; Another force fiercely occupied Mai Pha airfield and the high point of 391 in the southwest of town.

After nearly a month of struggle, on March 16, 1979, China suddenly announced that it had completed its goal of attacking Vietnam and began to withdraw its troops.

Up to now, the number of soldiers and weapons that China uses in the "sea of people" tactic has not been disclosed, there is still no unified number. But according to many documents by researchers, this is the largest military mobilization of the Beijing government since the Korean War.

Hoang Huong

 

Aklukars

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Country flag
Vietnamese forces
The Vietnamese government claimed they left only a force of about 70,000 including several army regular divisions in its northern area. However, the Chinese claimed to have encountered more than twice this number. During the war, Vietnamese forces also used American military equipment captured during the Vietnam War.

Course of the war
The Chinese entered Northern Vietnam and advanced quickly about 15–20 kilometers into Vietnam, with fighting mainly occurring in the provinces of Cao Bằng, Lào Cai and Lạng Sơn. The Vietnamese avoided mobilizing their regular divisions, and held back some 300,000 troops for the defence of Hanoi. The Vietnamese forces tried to avoid direct combat, and often used guerrilla tactics.

The initial Chinese attack soon lost its momentum, and a new wave of attack was sent in. Eight Chinese divisions joined the battle, and captured some of the northernmost cities in Vietnam. After capturing the northern heights above Lang Son, the Chinese surrounded and paused in front of the city in order to lure the Vietnamese into reinforcing it with units from Cambodia. This had been the main strategic ploy in the Chinese war plan as Deng did not want to risk an escalation involving the Soviets. The PVA high command, after a tip-off from Soviet satellite intelligence, was able to see through the trap[citation needed], however, and committed reserves only to Hanoi.

Once this became clear to the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), the war was practically over. An assault was still mounted, but the Vietnamese only committed one PVA regiment defending the city.[citation needed] After three days of bloody house-to-house fighting, Lang Son fell on March 6. The PLA then took the southern heights above Lang Son[29] and occupied Sapa. The PLA claimed to have crushed several of the Vietnamese regular units.[5]

The Chinese now resumed their attacks aimed at the major provincial capitals and key communication centres in the border hinter land. Major battles developed at Cao Bằng, Lang Son, Hoang Lien Son, Lai Chau and Quang Ninh. The aim of these attacks was to draw in the regular Vietnamese Army formations and inflict heavy attrition on them through classical "meat-grinder" operations. There were fierce attacks and counterattacks. In Lang Son the Chinese launched 17 counterattacks to regain one objective.

By late last week of February, the Vietnamese had still not committed any of their regular divisions which were being held back for the defence of Hanoi. They had also not pulled out any of their 150,000 troops in Cambodia. In the provincial capital the Vietnamese adopted their favourite tactic: they withdrew from the towns into the adjoining hills. As the Chinese formations surged in they were engaged from all sides from the surrounding hills and quite severely mauled. At the same time, due to the crude tactics and strategy of the PLA command, PLA units also suffered extensive casualties themselves. The combination of high casualties, a badly organized command, harsh Vietnamese resistance and the risk of the Soviets entering the conflict stopped the Chinese from going any farther.[citation needed]

On March 6, China declared that the gate to Hanoi was open and that their punitive mission had been achieved. On the way back to the Chinese border, the PLA destroyed all local infrastructure and housing and looted all useful equipment and resources (including livestock), which were mainly donated by China to support Vietnam's economy prior to the war, severely weakening the economy of Vietnam's northernmost provinces.[5] The PLA crossed the border back into China on March 16. Both sides declared victory with China claiming to have crushed the Vietnamese resistance and Vietnam claiming that China had fought mostly against border militias.

Aftermath
The aftermath of the war had different effects. China and Vietnam each lost thousands of troops, and China lost 3,446 million yuan in overhead, which delayed completion of their 1979–80 economic plan.[30] To reduce Vietnam's military capability against China, the Chinese implemented a "scorched-earth policy" while returning to China, causing extensive damage to the Vietnamese countryside and infrastructure.[31] Although Vietnam continued to occupy Cambodia, China successfully mobilized international opposition to the occupation, rallying such leaders as Cambodia's deposed king Norodom Sihanouk, Cambodian anticommunist leader Son Sann, and high-ranking members of the Khmer Rouge to deny the pro-Vietnam regime in Cambodia diplomatic recognition beyond the Soviet bloc. China improved relations with ASEAN by promising protection to Thailand and Singapore against "Vietnamese aggression". In contrast, Vietnam's decreasing prestige in the region led it to be more dependent on the Soviet Union, to which it leased a naval base at Cam Ranh Bay.[32]

Chinese casualties
The number of casualties during the war is disputed. Vietnamese source claimed the PLA had suffered 62,500 total casualties; while Chinese democracy activist Wei Jingsheng told western media in 1980 that the Chinese troops had suffered 9,000 deaths and about 10,000 wounded during the war. New Chinese sources indicated that China only suffered 6,954 lost.[33]

View attachment 111179

104 PLA Mountain Infantry Troops surrendered after falling into VN's ambushes in 1979

Vietnamese casualties
Like their counterparts in the Chinese government, the Vietnamese government has never announced any information on its actual military casualties. China estimated Vietnamese side had 42,000 soldiers killed and 70,000 militias also killed by the Chinese PLA.[34] The Nhan Dan newspaper[35] the Central Organ of the Communist Party of Vietnam claimed that Vietnam suffered more than 10,000 civilian deaths during the Chinese invasion[35] and earlier on May 17, 1979, reported statistics on heavy losses of industry and agriculture properties.[35]


Even Chinese also admit that VN's forces used many obsolete WW2 weapons against PLA's invasion in 1979, but still could drove PLA back.

Other skirmishes

Border skirmishes continued throughout the 1980s, including a significant skirmish in April 1984. Armed conflict only ended in 1989 after the Vietnamese agreed to fully withdraw from Cambodia. This conflict also saw the first use of the Type 81 assault rifle by the Chinese and a naval battle over the Spratly Islands in 1988 known as the Johnson South Reef Skirmish. In 1999 after many years of negotiations, China and Vietnam signed a border pact, though the line of demarcation remained secret.[36]

There was an adjustment of the land border, resulting in Vietnam giving China part of its land which were lost during the battle, including the Ai Nam Quan Gate which served as the traditional border marker and entry point between Vietnam and China, which caused widespread frustration within Vietnam. Vietnam's official news service reported the implementation of the new border around August 2001. Again in January 2009 the border demarcation with markers was officially completed, signed by Deputy Foreign Minister Vu Dung on the Vietnamese side and his Chinese counterpart, Wu Dawei, on the Chinese side.[37] Both the Paracel (Hoàng Sa: Vietnamese) (Xīshā: Chinese) and Spratly (Trường Sa: Vietnamese) (Nansha: Chinese) islands remain a point of contention.[38]

During the Sino-Soviet split, strained relations between China and the Soviet Union resulted in strained relations between China and the pro-Soviet Afghan Communist regime. China and Afghanistan had neutral relations with each other during the King's rule. When the pro-Soviet Afghan Communists seized power in Afghanistan in 1978, relations between China and the Afghan communists quickly turned hostile. The Afghan pro-Soviet communists supported the Vietnamese during the Sino-Vietnamese War and blamed China for supporting Afghan anti-communist militants. China responded to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan by supporting the Afghan Mujahideen and ramping up their military presence near Afghanistan in Xinjiang. China acquired military equipment from the United States to defend itself from Soviet attack.[39]

In response to the Soviet threat level, the Chinese People's Liberation Army trained and supported the Afghan Mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. China moved its training camps for the mujahideen from Pakistan into China itself. Hundreds of millions worth of anti-aircraft missiles, rocket launchers and machine guns were given to the Mujahideen by the Chinese. Chinese military advisors and army troops were present with the Mujahideen during training.[40]

Border War 1979: China's "Sea of People/Human wave" Tactics
10/02/2017 04:10 GMT+7

The number of Chinese soldiers and weapons used in the "sea of people/Human wave" tactic has not been unified. According to many research documents, this is China's largest military mobilization since the Korean War.

"If you are not good, you will also hit Chinese soldiers"

On the morning of February 17, 1979, two Chinese infantry divisions, supported by a tank regiment and six artillery regiments, entered the gate of Dong Dang, Lang Son. Before the invaders' tactics of spreading "sea of people/Human wave", the local armed forces and soldiers fought fiercely and died heroically. Lang Son Police is one of the forces that have tenaciously participated in the war to protect every inch of the homeland and the people. After the war, from a few hundred people, they were left with only 6 people, all of whom were awarded the title of heroes.

Colonel Trieu Quang Dien, Head of Criminal Investigation Department, Lang Son Provincial Police, hero of the People's Armed Forces recalls that moment "if you can't shoot well, you can still hit Chinese soldiers" to describe the "sea of people/Human wave" campaign. "of the invaders. During the battle of Dong Dang, he and his comrades fought fiercely, then gradually retreated to Temple Mau cave (about 500m from Dong Dang fortress) to protect several hundred people who were sheltering.

View attachment 111184

PLA troop attacking VN with Human wave tactic

In his recollection, tensions at the border were persistent. Before that, China sent scouts to plant people to do mass mobilization in Dong Dang, inciting the people. Also at this time, the influx of Chinese people back home made the border area always tense. At that time, our regular army units were fighting in Cambodia, and according to international law regular army forces had to be stationed a few dozen trees from the border, so the local police, militia and border guards were main fighting force.

When the Chinese attacked Lang Son, Private Trieu Quang Dien had just finished his training and returned to Dong Dang. He and two other comrades, Vi Van Cao and Tran Van Thai, had just returned from patrolling, but before they could recline, the enemy artillery fired fiercely. All three were mobilized to the area of Tem Mau cave to protect people and support other forces. Mr. Dien still remembers clearly, within the first hour, his squad had sacrificed most of it. Two people from the same group, Vi Van Cao and Tran Van Thai, were killed by artillery right in front of his eyes. The sea of people and tanks, Chinese artillery shells overwhelmed Dong Dang and then flooded Lang Son city.

On the same day that China rushed to the northern border, regular soldier Nguyen Van Binh was on vacation in Dong Dang, Lang Son. The sudden attack of the invaders forced him to become the commander of the local forces to fight and guide the people to take shelter in Temple Mau cave and Dong Dang fortress, each cave can hold 300-400 people.


Grab every border stone

Remembering the Vietnam-China border war of 1978-1979, the people of Lang Son cannot forget the story of heroic martyr Le Dinh Chinh, the first armed soldier of the People's Public Security to fall at the front of Cao Loc district.

On August 25, 1978, Chinese troops crossed the border to Vietnam and assaulted cadres, women and local people. Le Dinh Chinh fought back with his bare hands and was cut down by a group of plainclothes Chinese people with a machete.

Mr. Nguyen Xuan Thinh, a soldier serving in Binh Gia district, Lang Son, former sergeant of the tank unit, 14th Division, the first main unit to approach Lang Son city, said, for a long time, The Chinese side continued to be aggressive. Forces across the border in plainclothes continuously intruded into Vietnam's territory, moved landmarks, and threatened people in border areas. However, our side tried to resist but was not allowed to use armed forces and military equipment.

Mr. Thinh's tank unit was ordered to support from the outside, because of the unique mountain road, it was difficult to deploy the tank battle. Mr. Thinh recalled, when he was scouting the area of Lang Son town, he saw with his own eyes half of the mountain that had just been destroyed by Chinese soldiers. That is Khon Khoang cave, the refuge of two nearby Tay and Nung villages. Fortunately, half a day earlier, all the people in the cave were moved to another location.

A few days after China occupied Lang Son and 5 bordering provinces, destroying hospitals, schools, roads and bridges; killing tens of thousands of Vietnamese civilians, the local self-defense forces and the main Vietnamese army fought back tenaciously. Khanh Khe Bridge, in Cao Loc district, Lang Son is the evidence of fierce fighting between Vietnam's 377th Division, preventing Chinese troops from entering the territory.
(Khanh Khe Bridge is located on National Highway 1B connecting Dong Dang with Bac Son district, Thai Nguyen city and Hanoi).

Having fought many bloody battles for every inch of land in the high points around Lang Son, the Chinese army began to surround the town and simultaneously attacked in many directions. On the afternoon of the 4th, a Chinese army crossed the Ky Cung river, occupied the 340 high point and stormed into Lang Son town; Another force fiercely occupied Mai Pha airfield and the high point of 391 in the southwest of town.

After nearly a month of struggle, on March 16, 1979, China suddenly announced that it had completed its goal of attacking Vietnam and began to withdraw its troops.

Up to now, the number of soldiers and weapons that China uses in the "sea of people" tactic has not been disclosed, there is still no unified number. But according to many documents by researchers, this is the largest military mobilization of the Beijing government since the Korean War.

Hoang Huong

Wouldn't be surprised if so called Chinese members here makes a strawman argument. Never seen a productive conversation with a PRC National.
 

VivaVietnamm

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How did China use the 'sea of people' tactic in 1979?

During the war in 1979, China's tactics were improved, there was no longer the matter of just deploying troops to fight as before," Major General Nguyen Hong Quan analyzed.
On February 17, 1979, China opened fire on Vietnam across the northern border with 600,000 troops and a large number of weapons.

Sharing with Zing.vn, Major General Nguyen Hong Quan, former deputy director of the Institute of Strategy (Ministry of National Defense), said that the "sea of people" or "human sea" is a strategy that China has applied since the beginning of time. World War I. During the war on the northern border of our country in 1979 they improved, making this tactic more unpredictable

Tactics of large armies

- When referring to the border war in 1979, the phrase "human sea tactics" is often mentioned. Is this a military term, or just a way of referring to a large military force?

- According to our research, it is true that there is a military term "human sea tactics". This tactic just uses a large number of troops to overwhelm the enemy, engage in close combat, attack massively, and accept large casualties.

When such a massive assault army was easily destroyed by enemy fire. Historically, people have only seen the tactics of human seas applied to countries with large numbers of troops but lack of mechanized means of combat.

Like in World War II, when the Japanese fought the British and the Americans, or in the Russian Civil War, when the White Army fought the Soviet Red Army in 1917-1922. Especially China during the Korean War.

- With this tactic, how will the squad be deployed on the battlefield?

- In the field, the army was mobilized, arranged to stand in many horizontal rows, forming many waves, these waves continuously overflowed. The special thing is that only the first or second wave is equipped with guns, while the third wave has almost no guns.

When the first wave is destroyed, the people in the 2nd and 3rd waves will pick up weapons to continue fighting and so on. This is why this tactic is used when there are many people, limited weapons, and few motor vehicles.

The strength of this tactic is showing strength on the battlefield, overwhelming the opponent in number, not requiring full equipment and weapons. However, it drains health very quickly, not suitable for modern warfare.

- In the war on the northern border of our country in 1979, how did China apply this tactic?

- The peculiarity of China so far is that it has an extremely powerful army from the feudal period. China used human sea tactics in the Civil War - the Republic of China, in the 1950-1953 Korean War of Resistance, and even in the war with the Soviet Union in 1969.


The human sea tactic was applied from the early years of the nineteenth century to the end of the twentieth century. Pictures from the Russian Civil War 1917-1922. Photo: Quora.
During the war on the northern border of Vietnam in 1979, China's tactics were improved, more methodical, with meticulous requirements for firepower, no longer just deploying troops to fight as before.

Their tactics have been improved, more methodical, with meticulous requirements for firepower, no longer just deploying troops to fight as before.

During this war, Vietnam noticed many changes in their military art, from the starting position, the formation changing depending on the distance to the target, to the arrangement of small group formations to avoid being destroyed. wasted energy.

In such battles, with large forces, they also used the sounds of drums, gongs, horns, and made noises to make the opponent psychologically overwhelmed.

Similar to the sea of people tactic, in the war to invade Vietnam, China also applied the tank sea strategy to overwhelm. They used large tanks and armored vehicles to intimidate.

Hinh anh khong quen cua chien tranh bien gioi phia Bac 1979
Chinese tanks cross the river into Vietnam during the border war in 1979.


The group of three
- Can you analyze more closely the improvements and upgrades of the Chinese military in applying human sea tactics in the 1979 border war?

- One of their most notable innovations is the application of the "three-way" strategy in combat, combined with the human sea strategy.

The "three-way" tactic is often used when the army is only 200 meters away from the target, the forces are arranged in groups of 3, forming a volunteer formation. This formation can be 2 people ahead, one person behind or vice versa depending on the terrain and situation.

With this formation, the person behind can shoot to support the person in front of the ice. The task of the person following is to shoot the enemy's head, when the opponent has not had time to shoot back, the person in front rushes in.

The Chinese military is not naively lined up to prey on machine guns, they have learned a lot from foreign armies or their own. Instead, they divided into hundreds of groups of 3 people going together, shooting support for each other and did not go in groups, row by row to avoid being destroyed in clusters.


The troops are arranged sparsely to avoid casualties and loss of life force. Photo: Quora.
In addition, the "tam tam" formation is also mobile, changing depending on the evolution of the battle. When starting out of the trenches, these groups follow in horizontal rows, with a small distance to avoid losses.

When detecting the enemy's attacks, the formation was changed to a vertical line, when they encountered narrow breakthroughs, they passed in a row to avoid being destroyed, causing great damage.

to be continued

 

VivaVietnamm

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Large, strong, but lacking in modern warfare
- To what extent do you think the Chinese army was improving at that time?

- They have realized their mistakes and learned a lot from previous wars. They recognized the mistakes of the Japanese in wars with Britain and the United States, or of the Whites with the Red Army of the Soviet Union.

When the mass media reported on this war, at first glance, it was easy to mistake them as a naive army, without strategy or tactics, but that was not the case. According to military experts, the Chinese army is large and well-equipped. However, they did not have any modern combat experience.

China was a big country, but at that time it was not a developed country, and had just undergone the Cultural Revolution and suffered great damage. In the war, their greatest advantage was clearly the number of troops, a tactic they had also mastered in previous wars.

From the perspective of the Chinese, it can be said that they used the best and most optimal tactics they had. Besides, they also possess a much larger artillery and tank force than us. So it is not unusual to use the "sea of people" or "sea of tanks" tactics.

Chiến tranh biên giới 1979: Dù chiến thuật biển người hay biển xe tăng, Trung Quốc đều thảm bại - Ảnh 1.
Chinese tanks massively entered Vietnam on the morning of February 17, 1979


- Some argue that the Chinese army at that time was a mixed army, weak in technique - tactics, without bravery and fighting spirit. So what was the reality then?


- The above comment is subjective, contemptuous. The truth is that fighting back such armies is not easy. They have an elite force of artillery and infantry, well-trained regulars, we also have to admit that.

Objectively speaking, it is the West that has judged that Chinese soldiers are very disciplined, well-trained, especially adept in night combat and mountain combat. Besides, the Chinese are talented in the art of camouflage.

However, a part of the Chinese army at that time was weak and untrained. At that time, within a few months, they mobilized 600,000 soldiers including overseas Chinese who fled to China, lured ethnic minorities in the border areas, and even unemployed and poor people into the army. to have money.

That force was poorly trained, very poorly equipped, not even armed, only given military uniforms. Their mission is to rob and destroy. The fighting spirit is weak, there is no discipline, techniques and tactics are not taught and this is also the main casualty force of China. But this situation only occurs in a part of the Chinese army, and their regular army is very methodical and disciplined.

How has Vietnam overcome China's sea of people?
- To deal with Chinese attacks, how did the Vietnamese army and people prepare and counterattack?

- We were surprised at the time and scale of the war. Although we have taken careful steps to prepare for risks at the border, we are still surprised in terms of strategy when China attacks Vietnam.

Despite being passive when the enemy attacked, before the entry of the main army, the army and people of the 6 border provinces quickly regained their morale, built defensive lines, and arranged formations to counterattack. In addition, we have focused on training militia and self-defense forces, local soldiers in the area to be ready to fight as soon as there is a war.

Our application of people's war is very creative, we established combat communes, divided into 3 lines. The first line is the direct line to fight the enemy, the second line in the middle is both production and ready to fight, the third line is the rear, ensuring logistics and medical care.

The communes form continuous battle clusters, divided into defensive areas of the province, district, and military zone, each province becoming a battle fortress.

The core thing is that we have faith in the people and make the most of the people's war power. No matter where in Vietnam, when there is a war, the first line of defense is always the local people. The forces on the spot play a very important role, fighting and defending, waiting for the main force.

On February 17, 1979, 600,000 Chinese troops swept across the border, ravaging the northern provinces. Faced with the pressure of the Vietnamese main force to counterattack, the enemy quickly withdrew.

bo-doi.jpg


The first soldiers to defend the country were the local army, the armed police
(border guards), women militia and self-defense forces and people of 6 border provinces
https://zingnews.vn/trung-quoc-dung-chien-thuat-bien-nguoi-vao-nam-1979-nhu-the-nao-post916989.html
 

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