Chinese soldiers are so poorly equipped that they wear underwear with strings rather than elastic bands and their full equipment may not exceeds the price of two iPhones, according to the Guangzhou based Southern Weekly.
The article published on December 4 says that Chinese soldiers wear World War II type steel helmets while American soldiers’ helmets are made of lightweight kevlar meant to absorb small arms fire. The communication between soldiers is based on “yelling” while advanced armies use secure wireless radios.
China's military newspaper, the PLA Daily promptly discredited the report on Monday slammed stating that the article had "ignorantly blackened" the PLA's image.
However the article is making waves in China with various bloggers quoting excerpts from it. Graphics that go with the story show a Chinese soldier's wearable equipment costs about 8,000 Yuan ($1,293).
Irrespective of the controversy surrounding the article, the PLA has embarked on a major mission to modernize its infantry units. Chinese soldiers in exercises have been seen with advanced equipment similar that used by armies in the West. The PLA has its own program to equip its soldiers with advanced weapons, communications equipment and protection gear which will improve his efficiency in battle.
It is notable that China is one of the biggest exporters of bullet-proof jackets and helmets made from kevlar.
This system consists of two parts, the individual combat comprehensive support system and the individual life comprehensive support system, and serves the functions of defense and protection, self-help and mutual aids, eating and drinking, camping and many others. Its total weight is only 15 kilograms.