The PLA Daily on Friday morning posted pictures on Weibo of what appeared to be armed, PLA soldiers ready to strike while disguised in camouflage gear.
What else was more than meets the eye? The photos were actually ripped right off the pages of an American hunting magazine.
The Nanfang initially found the photos to be a bit suspicious and then launched an investigation revealing they were originally published by American sporting goods retailer RealTree.
Nonetheless, the PLA did not technically claim the people in the photos were PLA soldiers. It just didn’t bother to mention they were taken to advertise hunting gear in the West.
Other Chinese publications, however, were not as sneaky.
IFeng said the photos featured “real warfare camouflage”. Sohu Military and AK Military News called the gear “Camouflaged outfits of PLA soldiers.” The photos were captioned with, “The outfits of the PLA are enough to make people gasp in astonishment.”
The PLA is no stranger to hyping its special military gear on social media, according to ShanghaiList.com. Its Air Force recruitment videos have been compared to scenes from the Tom Cruise starring hit “Top Gun.” Earlier this year, President Xi Jinping announced plans to cut the military force by 300,000 while focusing more on the development of high-tech weapons for the navy and air force.