The Red Star Army is the military wing of the People's Republic of the Great Metro. It is one of the oldest continously active factions in the Detroit Metro Wasteland, having its roots in pre-war pro-Chinese insurgent cells. These groups had been launching raids and acts of sabotage for several years by the times the bombs had fallen. In the aftermath of the Great War they would become another survivor group, albeit one who had a strong ideological bent. More than a century after the bombs fell their descendants would emerge into history to bring the light of socialism to the beleagered people of the Detroit Metro Waste. In 2285 they are a major power in the Detroit Metro Wasteland. Operating from their capital Cheng City, formerly Lansing, they have spread to control much of the suburbs west of Detroit and have advanced deep into the city itself. They are in conflict with several other factions, mainly the Peninsular Empire, but also to a lesser extent the Taylor Raider Empire, the Forsaken and the Motor City Union.
One of the early cells was lead by Roger Kaczynski, a former professor at the University of Michigan. He had been fired for perceived radical views.
When the bombs fell the Red Star Brigade enacted its plan. They would liberate internment camps full of Chinese citizens and strike against capitalist forces in the aftermath. It was hoped that they could quickly take control of the remains of the city in the chaos and impose law and order on it, showing American's the benefits of Chengism even as the capitalist world failed around them. Cells mobilized to action, gathering weapons and launching their attacks. Many members did not show up, more concerned with survival. Several internment facilities were liberated and Chinese citizens rescued. Most had no interest in joining with commies and fled to survive, while a few joined. Several were coerced because they had skills or executed because of perceived collaboration with the USA.
One of these cells would be lead by a fugitive named Angela Waters. She was part of a communist insurgent cell that had been discovered in Lansing. She was on the run from the law and on the morning of the war was hiding with her only other surviving contact. He lead her to a cell who was going to free an internment camp. They managed to intercept a truck full of prisoners and hijacked it, heading out of the city as more bombs fell. They following a falling Chinese bomber and would meet up with Roger Kazynski and his band.
Roger Kaczynski's cell had rescued the crews of several downed Chinese bombers after ambushing a national guard Patrol and getting in a large firefight. The pilots would help to teach them survival skills in gratitude, and would use radios to link up with a Chinese commando team who had been inserted into Detroit. They survived and made it through the chaos of the city to link up with Kaczynsky. Establishing a radio beacon, they would attract other cells to join them. All told, their group ended up numbering just over 130 people. Taking to the woods to survive, they would end up in constant conflict with other survivors over resources and territory. Many perished from radiation, disease or the cold. But the few dozen who survived would be hardened by the experience and were able to pass their skills onto their children. After two generations the Red Star Army was declared, with its holdings being the camps that the semi-nomadic group used as its bases.
With its urban guerilla heritage, the Red Star army is most proficient at operating in small units. Squads of half a dozen troops operate semi-independently in a given area. They are self sufficient enough to operate alone for an extended period of time. Favoured tactics are ambushes and hit and runs to minimize risk and to occupy larger opponents. Much of the People's Republic of Great Metro manpower is tied up in agriculture and their limited industry, prioritizing a smaller army. That is not to say the Red Star army is ineffective, 200 years of fighting in much the same style has made them experts. With a comparatively smaller amount of troops than the Peninsular Empire they are keeping them at bay while fighting three other significant foes.
Typical equipment used are .308 hunting rifles, SKS carbines or machine guns based on a Chinese style. The design comes from a guerilla warfare manual brought by the commandos.