List of military tactics

Enlarge Blitzkrieg Envelopment

This page contains a list of military tactics.

The meaning of the phrase is context sensitive, and has varied over time, like the difference between "strategy" and "tactics".[1]

General

Small unit

The use of suppressive fire is a key part of modern small unit tactics
  • Individual movement techniques
    • Fire and movement (also known as leapfrogging) – working in 'fire teams', one team attempts to suppress the enemy while the other moves either toward the enemy or to a more favourable position.
    • Basic drill – a standard drill that all individual soldiers are supposed to perform if they come under fire.
    • Contact drill
    • Immediate ambush drill
    • Counter ambush drill
  • Hull-down (in armored warfare)
  • Shoot-and-scoot
  • Infiltration tactics
  • Marching fire
  • Patrolling
    • Reconnaissance patrol
    • Fighting patrol
    • Standing patrol (OP/LP)
  • Ambush
    • Linear ambush
    • L ambush
    • Area ambush
  • Guerrilla
    • Sniper trap - A sniper trap (colloquial term in US military “Chechen rat trap”) is a tactic used by snipers in which the sniper intentionally shoots to wound instead of kill an enemy combatant, with the end goal of drawing more enemy personnel into the field of fire so the sniper can fire on them as they provide aid to their wounded comrade. Not only does this tactic provide more targets for the sniper as enemy personnel come to help the wounded, but it also causes the sniper’s enemy to expend more resources in recovering, evacuating, and treating the wounded combatant than would be expended if the sniper simply killed the enemy combatant.

Eight classical maneuvers of warfare

  1. Penetration of the center: This involves the creation of a gap in the enemy line and its exploitation. Two ways of accomplishing this are separating enemy forces and using a reserve to exploit the gap that forms between them (e.g. Battle of Chaeronea (338 BC), the first recorded use of the penetration of the center) or having fast, elite forces smash at a specific point in the enemy line (an enemy weak spot or an area where your elites are at their best in striking power) and, while reserves and holding forces hold your opponent, drive quickly and immediately for the enemy's command or base (i.e., blitzkrieg).
    Battle of Issus, a classic example of the single envelopment
  2. Attack from a defensive position: Establishing a strong defensive position from which to defend and attack your opponent (e.g., Siege of Alesia and the Battle of the Granicus). However, the defensive can become too passive and result in ultimate defeat.
    Battle of Maling, the earliest known use of the feigned retreat
  3. Single envelopment: A strong flank beating its opponent opposite and, with the aid of holding attacks, attack an opponent in the rear. Sometimes, the establishment of a strong, hidden force behind a weak flank will prevent your opponent from carrying out their own single envelopment (e.g., Battle of Rocroi).
  4. Double envelopment: Both flanks defeat their opponent opposite and launch a rear attack on the enemy center. Its most famous use was Hannibal's tactical masterpiece, the Battle of Cannae and was frequently used by the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front of World War II.
  5. Attack in oblique order: This involves placing your flanks in a slanted fashion (refusing one's flank) or giving a vast part of your force to a single flank (e.g., Battle of Leuthen). The latter can be disastrous, however, due to the imbalance of force.
  6. Feigned retreat: Having a frontal force fake a retreat, drawing the opponent in pursuit and then launching an assault with strong force held in reserve (such as the Battle of Maling and the Battle of Hastings). However, a feigned retreat may devolve into a real one, such as in the Battle of Grunwald.
  7. Indirect approach: Having a minority of your force demonstrate in front of your opponent while the majority of your force advance from a hidden area and attack the enemy in the rear or flank (e.g., Battle of Chancellorsville).
  8. Crossing the "T": a classic naval maneuver which maximizes one side's offensive firepower while minimizing that of the opposing force.

Offensive

The cavalry charge is a quintessential offensive military tactic

Defensive

Defensive trenches were used commonly during World War I

Deception

See also

References

  1. ^ Bretnor, Reginald (February 1, 2001). Decisive Warfare: A Study in Military Theory (New ed.). Wildside Press. pp. 49–52. ISBN 9781587152481. Retrieved December 10, 2016.
  2. ^ Doughty, Robert. "Weather in War". The History Channel. Archived from the original on 13 October 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  3. ^ "SOME JUICY QUOTES FROM CLAUSEWITZ, ON WAR". The Clausewitz Homepage. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  4. ^ Toppe, Alfred. Night Combat. Google books. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  5. ^ Field Manual (FM) 7–92: The Infantry Reconnaissance Platoon and Squad (Airborne, Air Assault, Light Infantry). United States Army. 2001. p. 40.
  6. ^ "Definition of SMOKE SCREEN". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 2019-05-29.
  7. ^ Glantz 2010, Preface
  8. ^ Gooderson, Ian (1997). Air Power at the Battlefront: Allied Close Air Support in Europe, 1943–45 (1. publ. ed.). London: F. Cass. p. 129. ISBN 0-7146-4680-6.