58th Mechanized Infantry Brigade (People's Republic of China)

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58th Division (1949-52)
58th Infantry Division (1952-60)
58th Army Division (1960-85)
58th Infantry Division (1985-98)
58th Motorized Infantry Brigade (1998-99)
58th Mechanized Infantry Brigade (1999-)
Active 1949.2-present
Country China
Type Mechanized infantry
Size Brigade
Part of 20th Army
Garrison/HQ Xuchang, Henan
Nickname(s) Elite of Hundred Brigades(Chinese: 百旅之杰)
Engagements Chinese Civil War, Korean War, Sino-Vietnamese War
Commanders
Current
commander
Zhang Chuanguang

The 58th Mechanized Infantry Brigade (lang-zh:机械化步兵第58旅) is a brigade of the People's Liberation Army Ground Force. It is one of the three maneuver elements of the 20th Group Army in the Jinan Military Region. The 58th was previously a division, being converted to a brigade sized formation in 1998.

The 58th Division (Chinese: 第58师) was created in February 1949 under the Regulation of the Redesignations of All Organizations and Units of the Army, issued by Central Military Commission on November 1, 1948,[1] basing on the 1st Division, 1st Column of the PLA Huadong Field Army. Its history can be traced to 3rd Guerrilla Contingent of Eastern Fujian Red Army, formed in May 1933.

The division is part of 20th Corps. Under the flag of 58th division it took part in several major battles during the Chinese Civil War.

In November 1950 the division entered Korea as part of the People's Volunteer Army. At this time, the division consisted of the 172nd, 173rd, and 174th Regiments.[2]

The 58th Division attacked the U.S. Marines holding Hagaru-ri during the Battle of Chosin Reservoir.[3] During the battle, Yang Gensi, commander of 3rd Company, 172nd Infantry Regiment, 58th Division, sacrificed himself when holding a strategic position with one of his platoons, as he threw himself into a group of more than 40 American soldiers while holding a satchel charge, killing himself and the American soldiers. Yang was posthumously awarded as "First Class Hero of People's Volunteer Army", and "Hero of Democratic People's Republic of Korea".[4]

During its deployment in Korea, the division inflicted 11952 casualties to opposing UN forces, destroyed or damaged 26 aircraft, destroyed or captured 313 tanks and automobiles and 67 artillery pieces.

In October 1952 the division pulled out from Korea and renamed as 58th Infantry Division(Chinese: 步兵第58师). The division was then composed of:

  • 172nd Infantry Regiment;
  • 173rd Infantry Regiment;
  • 174th Infantry Regiment;
  • 263rd Tank Self-Propelled Artillery Regiment;[5]
  • 338th Artillery Regiment.

On November 9, 1956 263rd Tank Self-Propelled Artillery Regiment was detached from the division and renamed as Tank Crew Training Regiment of Jinan Military Region.

In 1960 the division was renamed as 58th Army Division(Chinese: 陆军第58师).

In 1969 338th Artillery Regiment renamed as Artillery Regiment, 58th Army Division.

In March 1979 the division took part in the Sino-Vietnamese War. During its deployment in Vietnam it inflicted 629 KIA and 3 POW to the opposing PAVN forces, while suffered 64 killed and 165 wounded.

In October 1985 the division was renamed as 58th Infantry Division(Chinese: 步兵第58师). Tank Regiment, 20th Army Corps was attached and renamed as Tank Regiment, 58th Infantry Division; Anti-aircraft Artillery Regiment was activated from unknown unit. Since then the division was composed of:

  • 172nd Motorized Infantry Regiment;
  • 173rd Motorized Infantry Regiment;
  • 174th Motorized Infantry Regiment;
  • Tank Regiment;
  • Artillery Regiment;
  • Anti-aircraft Artillery Regiment.

The division maintained as a Northern Motorized Infantry Division, Catalogue A from 1985 to 1998.

In 1998 the division was reduced and renamed as 58th Motorized Infantry Brigade(Chinese: 摩托化步兵第58旅). The brigade conversion in 1998 was part of the PLA's effort to experiment with a Corps-Brigade-Battalion force structure instead of the traditional Corps-Division-Regiment structure.

In 1999 the brigade was further re-organized as 58th Mechanized Infantry Brigade(Chinese: 机械化步兵第58旅), becoming the first mechanized brigade of PLA ground force.

The brigade is one of the units of the Jinan MR tasked to serve as one of the mobile response elements capable of reinforcing Groups Armies in other Military Regions in case of emergency or war.

References[edit]

  1. ^ 《中央军委关于统一全军组织及部队番号的规定》, http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_7254c7350100xb56.html
  2. ^ Mossman, Billy C. (1990). "Chapter 3 : The Enemy". Ebb and Flow November 1950-July 1951. The United States Army in the Korean War. United States Army Center of Military History. p. 55. 
  3. ^ Stewart, Richard W. The Korean War: The Chinese Intervention. p. 17. CMH Pub 19-8. 
  4. ^ 杨根思与四十多个敌人同归于尽, http://dangshi.people.com.cn/GB/146570/199127/12342912.html
  5. ^ 50年代我军步兵师属坦克自行火炮团的组建和发展沿革, http://www.360doc.com/content/12/0203/16/1215760_183906874.shtml