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The general description here doesn't look quite right. It needs a bit of a more disciplined description with reference to at least one source (Clausewitz?). Off the top of my head, some important concepts that are not covered:

  • Attackers are most vulnerable immediately after a successful attack
  • Conventional tactics are to attack through the objective, and rendezvous in an all-round defence behind it
  • Attacking forces should be followed by fresh elements to immediately secure the objective and take up its defence
  • Defending elements are not likely to be able to counterattack, since they have just been defeated
  • Defending formations should maintain a reserve in the rear for the counterattack
  • A defence in depth is also superior in making the attack difficult and allowing counterattack

Of course this is just part of the picture. This belongs to both the topics of military defence, and military attack, which latter article is completely absent. Michael Z. 2007-07-29 20:47 Z

"Successfully defended"?[edit]

First, I think it's more properly "fended off attack", not "defended off", and I don't think a counter-attack requires there have been a successful defense. A counter-attack can take place any time the momentum of the attacking force is stalled long enough to organize a counter-attack. Such as the Germans making repeated counter-attacks while being forced back across France during WWII. They weren't "successful" on the defense, except maybe locally and temporarily, but they still launched counter-attacks to disrupt and slow the Allied advance. In the Battle of the Somme, after certain units took the first line of trenches on the 1st, they were immediately met with counter-attacks from Germans in the 2nd line. They hadn't even attacked the 2nd line in many cases, having stopped due to exhaustion and disorganization and losses. I suppose one could argue that constitutes "successful defense", but it's a bit tenuous. I think it's more like "a force that launches an attack of it's own following the enemy's failure to fully defeat them in their own assault"...although even that's problematic. What is it called when a force is totally routed, but reinforcements are rushed in and halt the enemy with an immediate attack before they can consolidate their gains? AnnaGoFast (talk) 11:33, 4 January 2018 (UTC)