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 [White Paper] The Proper Use of Military Tactics - Torc Tarmin

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PostSubject: [White Paper] The Proper Use of Military Tactics - Torc Tarmin   Tue Aug 26, 2014 2:22 pm

Over the ages countless armies have fought with different methods that have added up to the modern military tactics currently used by armies all over the galaxy. As a former soldier I know firsthand that the tactics are used to minimize casualties and be the most effective with what you have. They range from a simple use of radio silence to ambushing. Each and every tactic has advantages, but also weaknesses. If used properly most tactics will change the odds to the favor of the user. In this paper I will discuss tactics that include space combat, land combat, deception, and peace.

Space combat tactics vary greatly depending on the need of the time. Such as using The Under Split, where two ships would go together one acting as a lead ship and the other a wingman. The lead ship would launch itself out as bait and when an enemy ship locks on and follow the wingman would cut up from under the leader’s ship and attempt a belly shot at the enemy starfighter. This is a popular tactic that utilizes minimal amount of soldiers while doing maximum damage. I believe this can also be used against not only a singular starfighter but even against an enemy squadron if they can react fast enough.
Another naval tactic that is used is orbital bombardment, however some choose to use this as last resort in an attempt to minimize civilian casualties. But when used it can be more precise than Base Delta Zero, which completely annihilates a planet. Orbital bombardments are designated strikes upon the planet which would take out key enemy positions or help with the defense of a base under siege. However if the orbital bombardment is used to attack a base before it is attacked by ground forces it is possible to defend by using shield generator or ion cannon to disable the ships firing the bombardment. Some also used orbital bombardment not for defense or fighting an enemy, but to send a message on what they are capable of. Personally this is a tactic I do not care for as it does have danger to civilians if the gunners are not extremely precise with their shots. Along with this it will devastate a planets ecosystem and throw everything off balance if it is not used properly.

As mentioned in the explanation of the orbital bombardment there is also the Base Delta Zero. The Base Delta Zero is a code that is almost universal and its effects are devastating. The Base Delta Zero is a command that will annihilate a planets forests, make it uninhabitable, and is quite a cruel tactic. Almost every soldier finds this order gruesome, even those who thirst for war. It seems more humane to go and kill the planets inhabitants as the Base Delta Zero will leave the survivors with nothing; no water, no food, no shelter, they are left with absolutely nothing and are left to suffer. I find the Base Delta Zero is a tactic that should not be considered unless all else has failed and you are able to at least evacuate all civilian population of the planet.

The final space tactic that I will speak of is precision hyperspace jumps also known as micro-jumps. This tactic employs the use of gravity wells that are natural or artificially created to break past an enemy barricade. However this is a dangerous tactic as the tiniest of errors could destroy your ship by crashing it into another ship or being caught too far in the planet’s gravity and being forced to the ground. But if it planned correctly the jump can bring a small ambush group behind the enemy to allow a quick strike that is impossible to detect until the moment is implemented.  I have personally also found this tactic useful off the field. It makes transporting faster and easier if transporting through a blockade.

Moving to land tactics I will begin with flanking. Having used this I know firsthand that this is not a dangerous tactic, in the sense that you are not in constant danger of being ambushed. In fact it is one of the safer tactics I have performed. Flanking consists of you and a partner each taking a team while one goes around the enemy. The flanking team must move swiftly and silently while the other team draws fire from the enemy. When the flanking team arrives to their position they attack the enemy to try to surprise and confuse them while making them divert part of their forces. This effectively makes them weaker as in the confusion you and your partner can take out enough of their forces to cripple them before they can get themselves organized. However this tactic is very ineffective against a force impossibly larger than your own. Which is why a retreat is a great strategy as well in a case where flanking cannot be used.

A tactical retreat is simply falling back to a better position or to more of your own soldiers. This can also be used as an ambush strategy by leading an enemy force towards your own, larger, force. Retreating can also put you in a better position such as if you retreated up to the top of a hill. You could hold the high ground while the enemy would be forced to fight an uphill battle should they choose to pursue. The retreat can also act to help resupply your soldiers. For example if you were running low on supplies while fighting and knew that a friendly base was nearby you could fall back, get the supplies you need, and return as close to the position you were holding as possible.

Ambushing and Guerrilla Warfare are often thought of as the same thing, while they have their similarities they are not the same thing. Ambushing consists of having knowledge of where the enemy will be prior to the enemy arriving.  This also consists of setting traps in the path of an enemy movement most of the time, which can also act as a signal for when the soldiers are to start firing at the enemy. Ambushing is much more planned than Guerrilla Warfare which, while in some cases may involve prior intelligence, relies more upon hiding along strategic pathways both sides would use. Having practiced both I believe that ambushing is harder to pull off in the long run as it is designed around many variables. If the enemy were to change the route they were to take at the very last minute all the preparation for the ambush would have been for naught.

As much as a good offense is for war I believe a good defense is even better. They are what allows the soldiers to fight another day. The most basic of defensive tactics is an all-around defensive. This is simply a defensive formation without any holes in the flank so all units are packed tightly together. This works anywhere from a small fire team to a battalion holding a position. When used in a fire team it is most commonly seen when the fire team is regrouping after an attack and is being cautious of enemy positions.

Seeing without looking is more commonly referred to in Jedi training but it is also used by spies and bounty hunters. The idea behind it was that one could look like a normal civilian walking down the street without looking suspicious. They would train to use every sense available to them to gather details about the area. Sound and sight were the two most common to use in this tactic; sound to listen to conversations and sight to notice small details but not to stare and draw attention. Smell could be used by species who, unlike humans, had adapted a sense of smell to distinguish people by their smell just by being near them. Having no prior experience with being a spy or Jedi I cannot say much on this subject. However I have practiced it in theory in civilian life. By doing this I have found out how easily information can slip if you are not careful on who is around when you say something.

Moving to one of my personal favorites in the line of tactics is the feigned retreat. This works with the ambush tactic in a ploy to draw the enemy into the ambush. The idea is that a small group would be fighting the enemy and begin a “retreat” towards their hidden allies. By drawing the enemy into following them the enemy unknowing leads themselves into a trap and will most likely be wiped out in a matter of minutes from the ambush.

Another method of deception is the fictional units. This is otherwise known as “BSing it”. The commander of a much smaller forces than his adversary will make up a large force, but believable sounding, that is heading to reinforce them. Upon hearing of this the commander of the opposite force had a decision to make, to either believe the commander of the smaller force and either surrender or call off the attack or would he call the bluff and continue the assault. Even if the commander was able to call the bluff the time spent thinking about it would have bought precious time to the smaller force to regroup, prepare and possibly even a larger allied group to come their way. There have been stories of small forces actually using this and making his adversary surrender to him while there was absolutely nothing believable or anything to back up his claims. These claims show that this method requires an incredible amount of luck as well as good story telling.

A deception tactic that I hated finding on assaults was the dummy base. This tactic distracts the opposing force into assaulting a base that either does not exist or is absolutely created out of plastics. The idea behind this tactic is to create a fake base, complete with fake vehicles and facilities, to distract the enemy into attacking. This would lead into one of two things most often. Either the opposing force would be ambushed at the fake base or the group who created the dummy base would attack the opposing forces base while they were away or the force that created the dummy base would retreat while the enemy was distracted.

A common practice when deceiving the enemy falls under the category of stealth. The unit can fly in using a captured ship by “flying casual” when approaching the enemy. They can also use faked codes to change the identity of who is flying the ship to seem as an ally or neutral group to their enemy.

The final method of deception I will talk about is disinformation. This is not to be confused with misinformation, which is unintentionally false. Disinformation is always intentionally false information leaked to the enemy to make them think that they need to change tactics, which could be in favor to the original force. It is also used to sometimes allow soldiers to do their job without the news following them every step of the way. I have had to do this first hand. By leaking to news groups that we would be in one location instead of the actual location I was able to go in and do my job without being bugged by civilians. This also allowed smaller resistance as the enemy believed me to be in the other location as well.

To end the types of tactics in this paper I will discuss peace tactics. This are numerous and there is no one set way to define a peace tactic. It varies greatly upon the situation. One type of peace tactic could be referred to as a mutual surrender. This would mean both forces have reached a stalemate in war or both armies are tired and depleted and they can no longer fight. Both sides of the conflict would simply agree to end the fighting to allow them time to either gather more forces or simply just be content with what they’ve won. The other common type of peace tactic could be called gifting to avoid annihilation. This would just mean that the smaller group about to lose a conflict could offer up rarities to their enemies in exchange for a cease fire and allow them to live.

To sum up this paper there are many types of tactics. I have employed several in my time as a soldier and do find some to be questionable but most all are to save lives. These tactics have advanced and changed over the years of use and will continue to do so. The last thing to keep in mind from this paper is that all armies should be aware of all tactics available to them and be wary of those that are being used against them.
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