Monday, April 10, 2006

Principles of Red partisan warfare

While reading the praiseworthy book of Edger Snow, Red Star Over China (1936), I made some notes on the interview of the author with P’eng Teh-huai, Commander of the First Front of the Red Army. At the time of interview, the First Front Army was known for its unique tactics, bravery, consistence, and uninterrupted record of success. It was believed at that time that the news of a combat with the First Front would be enough to dishearten the troops of the enemy.

Composition of Red Army:

38% Agrarian Working Class
58% Peasantry
4% Petty-bourgeoisie

50% of the troops were members of the Communist Party or Communist Youth League.

Literacy: 60-70%
One-third of Army was composed of former Kuomintang soldiers.

“Tactics are important, but we could not exist if the majority of people did not support us. We are nothing but first of the people beating their oppressors” – P’eng

Principles of Red partisan warfare:

1. Must not fight any losing battles.

2. Surprise is the main offensive tactic. Avoid static warfare.

3. Work out the plan of attack and especially the plan of retreat.

4. Greatest attention to min-t’uan, the first, last and most determined line of resistance of the enemy. If possible, min-t’uan must be won over politically.

5. In regular engagements partisan must exceed enemy in number.

6. Partisan line must have the greatest elasticity, even in combat.

7. Master tactics of distraction, decoy, diversion, ambush, feint, and irritation.

8. Concentrate on the weakest link, or the most vital one, of the enemy. Avoid engagements with the main army.

9. Precaution must be taken to prevent the enemy from locking the partisan’s main army.

10. Encourage help of peasants to secure intelligence.

1 comment:

celticfire said...

Interesting post. The Chinese Red Army was also regarded as the most democratic army in the world...