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79th Group Army

The Seventy-ninth Group Army of the People's Liberation Army is affiliated to the Army in the Northern Theater and the military headquarters is located in Liaoyang City, Liaoning Province.

The group army comprises various modern units such as infantry, artillery, armored signal, antichemical warfare, engineer, air defense, air, and electronic countermeasure units. Though Group Armies often are considered to be corps-sized units, in reality they control many fewer personnel and units than do corps in the US military. A group army with an all brigade maneuver force would be more comparable to a US division than a corps. After the reductions of the late 1990s, the variation in group army structure has increased considerably from previous years. In the 1990s, a Group Army could vary in size from 65,000 to 100,000+ personneL, but by 2020 the totals were about half these numbers.

In the 2017 reforms, the original Motorized Infantry No. 203 Brigade was adjusted to the Special Operations No. 79 Brigade. After the formation of the Army's Seventy-ninth Army in 2017, it has jurisdiction over:

  • 116th Heavy Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 190th Heavy Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 46th Medium Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 200th Medium Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 119th Light Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 191th Light Combined-Arms Brigade
  • 79th Army Aviation Brigade
  • 79th Special Operations Brigade
  • 79th Artillery Brigade
  • 79th Air Defense Brigade
  • 79th Brigade
  • 79th Service Support Brigade

The official English version of the 2013 "China National Defense White Paper" does not use the term "group army", but refers to China's "combined corps". The State Council Information Office, April 2013 release "Diversified Employment at The Armed Forces of China" stated: "The PLAA mobile operational units include 18 combined corps , plus additional independent combined operational divisions (brigades), and have a total strength of 850,000. The combined corps , composed of divisions and brigades, are respectively under the seven military area commands (MACs)". By force of custom, these units are still called Group Armies.

The group armies are the main part of the PLA. In November 2015, the Central Military Commission held a three-day PLA reform meeting in Beijing, during which President Xi Jinping, also the chairman of the Central Military Commission, gave guidelines on reform. After the reshuffle, the People's Liberation Army was regrouped into five new theater commands to replace the former seven military area commands. China announced a military reshuffle with 84 newly adjusted or established corps-level units. The change in designation is significant. In the past, armies only included the PLA army, but in the future, the air force, navy and Rocket Forces will also be included in the group armies and given a new designation. The previous 18 group armies have been reorganized into 13 new ones. All major combat units of the PLA follow a group army-brigade-battalion system.

In 2017, based on the existing 18 Group Armies were adjusted, 13 Group Armies and formed. China's military established five Theater Commands for its operations on 01 February 2016, realigning forces previously distributed under 7 Military Regions. In this round of deepening national defense and military reforms, after the establishment of the army's leading institutions and theaters, in accordance with the principle of "the general management of the military commission, the theater's main battle, and the service's construction", the 18 group armies that previously belonged to the original seven military regions were reassigned to each theater. On 27 April 2017 the Central Military Commission decision adjust the formation of the original 18 Group Armies into 13 newly formed Group Armies. with each of the five Theater Commands. After adjustment, the army forces in each theater had jurisdiction over 2 to 3 Group Armies that are relatively balanced.

The new Group Armies are new units without prior history, rather than a simple renumbering of units that otherwise retained their unit history. The authors of wikipedia mistakenly report that the new Group Armies are redesignations of existing units. For instance, it is reported that "The 78th Group Army ... was established in 2017, by seemingly a redesignation of the former 16th Group Army." But the legacy Group Armies had survived a variety of reshuffles prior to 2017, and if the intent had simply been to tidy up the organzation charts the legacy unit designation could have been preserved, which it was not.

In combat, individual exploits and personal valor are important, but team effort wins the fight. The military pays close attention to team performance, to the organizations in which its soldiers serve and fight, and to the flags and colors that symbolize those organizations. In the same way that patriots fight for their country's flag, in many Armies of the world, soldiers fight for their unit colors. The older an organization, the more soldiers, both active and retired, had the opportunity of serving in and identifying with it and the more opportunities the organization had to win battle honors. In the US Army the term reflagging was coined in the 1980s to describe the phenomenon formerly called a "transfer less personnel and equipment." For those soldiers who have served in the "Big Red One," the "Wolfhounds," or "The Blackhorse Regiment," unit pride is very much a part of their lives. In the US Army, the adoption of the Combat Arms Regimental System (CARS) in 1957 to provide a flexible regimental structure that would permit perpetuation of unit history and tradition.

But this is precively contrary to the reforms of 2015-2017, the intent of which was to completely reboot the upper echelons of the Chinese military. The PLA did not have well established patterns of rotating officers among commands, unlike the US military which has long rotated officers every few years to avoid the emergence of local cliques. Instead, an officer might spend his entire career in series of vertial promotions within the same geographic unit. The 2015-2017 aimed to break up this pattern, which would help to defeat strutures of corruption and nepotism, as well as establish an officer corps and command struture that clearly owed its position [and loyalty] to Chairman Xi Jinping.

Honored Troops

The units that have been awarded the honorary title are:

  • Red Army Division : The 116th Division of the Infantry of the 39th Army of the former Army (formerly the 3rd, 4th and 4th Brigade of the 115th Division of the Eighth Route Army ).
  • Red Army Brigade : The 115th Infantry Division of the 39th Army of the former Army. In 2013 division reform brigades.
  • Red Army : Former Army 39th Army Infantry 115th Division 343rd Regiment, Infantry 116th Division 347th Regiment
  • Daofeng Mountain Battalion : 3rd Battalion , Fifth 609th Regiment, 1st 90th Infantry Division, Former Army 39th Infantry
  • Four companies of sharpshooters : The four companies of the third, eighth and eighth regiments of the first sixteenth division of the infantry of the thirty-ninth army of the former Army. Transferred to the Army Seventy-ninth Army in 2017
  • Seventh Company of Iron and Steel : Seventh Company of the 3rd, 4th and 7th Regiments of the First 116th Division of the Infantry of the 39th Army of the former Army. In 2017, the number was revoked, and it was adapted to pretend to have five companies.
  • Red Three Company : Three companies of the 1st Battalion of the 191st Brigade of the Motorized Infantry of the 40th Army of the former Army. In 2017, he was transferred to the third company of a brigade of the Army's Seventy-ninth Army
  • Cangxian Dengcheng First Power Company : A company of the 2000th Brigade of the Mechanized Infantry of the 26th Army of the former Army. Transferred to the Army Seventy-ninth Army in 2017
  • A model red nine company that studied Chairman Maos writings : the nineteenth company of the first three or six regiments of the 46th Division of the former Armys 16th Army Infantry. In 2017, he was transferred to a company of a certain brigade of the Army's Seventy-ninth Army
  • Lei Feng Ban : A certain squad of the automobile company of the 40th Army Corps of Engineers. In 2017, he was transferred to a brigade and a squad of Army Seventy-nine Army

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Page last modified: 01-08-2021 14:09:19 ZULU