What is a Riposte?

Introduction In fencing, a riposte (French for “retort”) is an offensive action with the intent of hitting one’s opponent made by the fencer who has just parried an attack. In military usage, a riposte is the strategic device of hitting a vulnerable point of the enemy, thereby forcing him to abandon his own attack. In… Read More

Advertisements

What is a Perpetual War?

Introduction Perpetual war, endless war, or a forever war, is a lasting state of war with no clear conditions that would lead to its conclusion. These wars are situations of ongoing tension that may escalate at any moment, similar to the Cold War. From the late 20th century, the concepts have been used to critique… Read More

What is Absolute War?

Introduction The concept of absolute war was a theoretical construct developed by the Prussian military theorist General Carl von Clausewitz in his famous but unfinished philosophical exploration of war, Vom Kriege (in English, On War, 1832). Refer to Perpetual War. The notion of an “absolute form of war” is very clearly derived from the new… Read More

What is Hybrid Warfare?

Introduction Hybrid warfare is a theory of military strategy, first proposed by Frank Hoffman, which employs political warfare and blends conventional warfare, irregular warfare and cyberwarfare with other influencing methods, such as fake news, diplomacy, lawfare and foreign electoral intervention. By combining kinetic operations with subversive efforts, the aggressor intends to avoid attribution or retribution.… Read More

What is a Rearguard?

Introduction A rearguard is that part of a military force that protects it from attack from the rear, either during an advance or withdrawal. The term can also be used to describe forces protecting lines, such as communication lines, behind an army. Even more generally, a rearguard action may refer idiomatically to an attempt at… Read More

Who was J.F.C. Fuller?

Introduction Major General John Frederick Charles “Boney” Fuller CB CBE DSO (01 September 1878 to 10 February 1966) was a senior British Army officer, military historian, and strategist, notable as an early theorist of modern armoured warfare, including categorising principles of warfare. With 45 books and many articles, he was a highly prolific author whose… Read More

What is a Battle of Annihilation?

Introduction Annihilation is a military strategy in which an attacking army seeks to entirely destroy the military capacity of the opposing army. This strategy can be executed in a single planned pivotal battle, called a “battle of annihilation”. A successful battle of annihilation is accomplished through the use of tactical surprise, application of overwhelming force… Read More