Siege of Acre (1799)
The Siege of Acre of 1799 was an unsuccessful French siege of the Ottoman-defended, walled city of Acre and was the turning point of Napoleon's invasion of Egypt and Syria. It was Napoleon`s first strategic defeat as three years he had been tactically defeated at the Second Battle of Bassano. Acre was a site of significant strategic importance due to its commanding position on the route between Egypt and Syria. Bonaparte wanted to capture it following his invasion of Egypt, he hoped to threaten British rule in India. After the Siege of Jaffa, followed by two days and nights of massacre and rape by the French forces, the defenders of the citadel were more fierce; the French attempted to lay siege on 20 March using only their infantry. Napoleon believed the city would capitulate to him. In correspondence with one of his subordinate officers he voiced his conviction that a mere two weeks would be necessary to capture the linchpin of his conquest of the Holy Land before marching on to Jerusalem. However, the troops of the capable Jezzar Pasha, refusing to surrender, withstood the siege for one and a half months.
Haim Farhi, al-Jazzar's Jewish adviser and right-hand man, played a key role in the city's defense, directly supervising the battle against the siege. After Napoleon's earlier conquest of Jaffa, rampaging French troops had savagely sacked the conquered city, thousands of Albanian prisoners of war were massacred on the sea-shore, prior to the French move further northwards; these facts were well known to the townspeople and defending troops in Acre, the prospect is to have stiffened their resistance. A Royal Navy flotilla under Commodore Sidney Smith helped to reinforce the Ottoman defences and supplied the city with additional cannon manned by sailors and marines. Smith used his command of the sea to capture the French siege artillery being sent by a flotilla of gunboats from Egypt and to bombard the coastal road from Jaffa. An artillery expert from the fleet, Antoine Le Picard de Phélippeaux redeployed against Napoleon's forces the artillery pieces which the British had intercepted. Smith anchored the line-of-battle ships Tigre and Theseus so their broadsides could assist the defence.
The gunboats, which were of shallower draft, could come in closer, together they helped repel repeated French assaults. On 16 April a Turkish relief force was fought off at the Mount Tabor. By early May, replacement French siege artillery had arrived overland and a breach was forced in the defences. At the culmination of the assault, the besieging forces managed to make a breach in the walls. However, after suffering many casualties to open this entry-point, Napoleon's soldiers found, on trying to penetrate the city, that Farhi and DePhelipoux had, in the meantime, built a second wall, several feet deeper within the city where al-Jazzar's garden was. Discovery of this new construction convinced Napoleon and his men that the probability of their taking the city was minimal. Moreover, after the assault was again repelled, Turkish reinforcements from Rhodes were able to land. Having underestimated the stubborn attitude of the defending forces combined with a British blockade of French supply harbours and harsh weather conditions, Napoleon's forces were left hungry and damp.
Plague had struck the French camp as a result of the desperate condition of the men, had by now led to the deaths of about 2,000 soldiers. Throughout the siege, both Napoleon and Jezzar sought in vain the assistance of the Shihab leader, Bashir—ruler of much of present-day Lebanon. Bashir remained neutral; as things turned out, it was the French side which suffered most from the attitude of Bashir, whose intervention on their side might have turned the balance. The siege was raised. Napoleon Bonaparte retreated two months on 21 May after a failed final assault on 10 May, withdrew to Egypt. In 1805, Napoleon asserted that if he had: been able to take Acre, I would have put on a turban, I would have made my soldiers wear big Turkish trousers, I would have exposed them to battle only in case of extreme necessity. I would have made them into a Sacred Battalion--my Immortals. I would have finished the war against the Turks with Arabic and Armenian troops. Instead of a battle in Moravia, I would have won a Battle of Issus, I would have made myself emperor of the East, I would have returned to Paris by way of Constantinople.
The allusions from Classical Antiquity included in the speech are to the Sacred Band of Thebes and the Persian Immortals—elite units of the city state of Thebes and the Achaemenid Kings of Persia. Some hold that a statement attributed to Napoleon during the war, according to which he promised to return the land to the Jews if he were to succeed in his conquest of Palestine, was meant to capture Farhi’s, a Syrian Jew and betray his master by switching his support to the French. Whether this is true or not, Farhi defended the city with the rest of the Turks. However, Napoleon never showed any particular interest in winning over the Jews during his campaign, though the account of Las Cases in "Mémorial de Sainte Hélène" about Napoleon's military campaign records that a rumour among Syrian Jews had it that after Napoleon took Acre, he would go to Jerusalem and restore Solomon's temple and decrees were passed in favour of Jews in French-controlled Egypt. Whatever Napoleon's actual intentions, these stories and rumors are considered to be among the earl
Syria the Syrian Arab Republic, is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon to the southwest, the Mediterranean Sea to the west, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, Israel to the southwest. A country of fertile plains, high mountains, deserts, Syria is home to diverse ethnic and religious groups, including Syrian Arabs, Armenians, Kurds, Circassians and Turks. Religious groups include Sunnis, Alawites, Isma'ilis, Shiites, Salafis and Jews. Sunni make up the largest religious group in Syria. Syria is a unitary republic consisting of 14 governorates and is the only country that politically espouses Ba'athism, it is a member of one international organization other than the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement. In English, the name "Syria" was synonymous with the Levant, while the modern state encompasses the sites of several ancient kingdoms and empires, including the Eblan civilization of the 3rd millennium BC. Aleppo and the capital city Damascus are among the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world.
In the Islamic era, Damascus was the seat of the Umayyad Caliphate and a provincial capital of the Mamluk Sultanate in Egypt. The modern Syrian state was established in mid-20th century after centuries of Ottoman and a brief period French mandate, represented the largest Arab state to emerge from the Ottoman-ruled Syrian provinces, it gained de-jure independence as a parliamentary republic on 24 October 1945, when Republic of Syria became a founding member of the United Nations, an act which ended the former French Mandate – although French troops did not leave the country until April 1946. The post-independence period was tumultuous, a large number of military coups and coup attempts shook the country in the period 1949–71. In 1958, Syria entered a brief union with Egypt called the United Arab Republic, terminated by the 1961 Syrian coup d'état; the republic was renamed into the Arab Republic of Syria in late 1961 after December 1 constitutional referendum, was unstable until the 1963 Ba'athist coup d'état, since which the Ba'ath Party has maintained its power.
Syria was under Emergency Law from 1963 to 2011 suspending most constitutional protections for citizens. Bashar al-Assad has been president since 2000 and was preceded by his father Hafez al-Assad, in office from 1971 to 2000. Since March 2011, Syria has been embroiled in an armed conflict, with a number of countries in the region and beyond involved militarily or otherwise; as a result, a number of self-proclaimed political entities have emerged on Syrian territory, including the Syrian opposition, Tahrir al-Sham and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Syria is ranked last on the Global Peace Index, making it the most violent country in the world due to the war, although life continues for most of its citizens as of December 2017; the war caused more than 470,000 deaths, 7.6 million internally displaced people and over 5 million refugees, making population assessment difficult in recent years. Several sources indicate that the name Syria is derived from the 8th century BC Luwian term "Sura/i", the derivative ancient Greek name: Σύριοι, Sýrioi, or Σύροι, Sýroi, both of which derived from Aššūrāyu in northern Mesopotamia.
However, from the Seleucid Empire, this term was applied to The Levant, from this point the Greeks applied the term without distinction between the Assyrians of Mesopotamia and Arameans of the Levant. Mainstream modern academic opinion favours the argument that the Greek word is related to the cognate Ἀσσυρία, Assyria derived from the Akkadian Aššur; the Greek name appears to correspond to Phoenician ʾšr "Assur", ʾšrym "Assyrians", recorded in the 8th century BC Çineköy inscription. The area designated by the word has changed over time. Classically, Syria lies at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, between Arabia to the south and Asia Minor to the north, stretching inland to include parts of Iraq, having an uncertain border to the northeast that Pliny the Elder describes as including, from west to east, Commagene and Adiabene. By Pliny's time, this larger Syria had been divided into a number of provinces under the Roman Empire: Judaea renamed Palaestina in AD 135 in the extreme southwest.
Since 10,000 BC, Syria was one of the centers of Neolithic culture where agriculture and cattle breeding appeared for the first time in the world. The following Neolithic period is represented by rectangular houses of Mureybet culture. At the time of the pre-pottery Neolithic, people used vessels made of stone and burnt lime. Finds of obsidian tools from Anatolia are evidences of early trade relations. Cities of Hamoukar and Emar played an important role during Bronze Age. Archaeologists have demonstrated that civilization in Syria was one of the most ancient on earth preceded by only those of Mesopotamia; the earliest recorded in
Upper Egypt is the strip of land on both sides of the Nile that extends between Nubia and downriver to Lower Egypt. Upper Egypt is between the Cataracts of the Nile above modern-day Aswan, downriver to the area of El-Ayait, which places modern-day Cairo in Lower Egypt; the northern part of Upper Egypt, between Sohag and El-Ayait, is known as Middle Egypt. In Arabic, inhabitants of Upper Egypt are known as Sa'idis and they speak Sai'idi Egyptian Arabic. In ancient Egypt, Upper Egypt was known as tꜣ šmꜣw "the Land of Reeds" or "the Sedgeland" It was divided into twenty-two districts called nomes; the first nome was where modern-day Aswan is and the twenty-second was at modern Atfih just to the south of Cairo. The main city of prehistoric Upper Egypt was Nekhen, whose patron deity was the vulture goddess Nekhbet. By about 3600 BC, Neolithic Egyptian societies along the Nile had based their culture on the raising of crops and the domestication of animals. Shortly after 3600 BC, Egyptian society began to increase in complexity.
A new and distinctive pottery, related to the Levantine ceramics, appeared during this time. Extensive use of copper became common during this time; the Mesopotamian process of sun-drying adobe and architectural principles—including the use of the arch and recessed walls for decorative effect—became popular during this time. Concurrent with these cultural advances, a process of unification of the societies and towns of the upper Nile River, or Upper Egypt, occurred. At the same time the societies of the Nile Delta, or Lower Egypt underwent a unification process. Warfare between Upper and Lower Egypt occurred often. During his reign in Upper Egypt, King Narmer defeated his enemies on the Delta and merged both the Kingdom of Upper and Lower Egypt under his single rule. For most of pharaonic Egypt's history, Thebes was the administrative center of Upper Egypt. After its devastation by the Assyrians, its importance declined. Under the Ptolemies, Ptolemais Hermiou took over the role of Upper Egypt's capital city.
Upper Egypt was represented by the tall White Crown Hedjet, its symbols were the flowering lotus and the sedge. In the 11th century, large numbers of pastoralists, known as Hilalians, fled Upper Egypt and moved westward into Libya and as far as Tunis, it is believed that degraded grazing conditions in Upper Egypt, associated with the beginning of the Medieval Warm Period, were the root cause of the migration. In the 20th-century Egypt, the title Prince of the Sa'id was used by the heir apparent to the Egyptian throne. Although the Kingdom of Egypt was abolished after the Egyptian revolution of 1952, the title continues to be used by Muhammad Ali, Prince of the Sa'id; the following list may not be complete: Sa'idi people Upper and Lower Egypt Geography of Egypt Edel, Elmar Zu den Inschriften auf den Jahreszeitenreliefs der "Weltkammer" aus dem Sonnenheiligtum des Niuserre Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen, OCLC 309958651, in German. Media related to Upper Egypt at Wikimedia Commons
Imbaba is a working-class neighbourhood in northern Giza, located west of the Nile and northwest of and near Gezira Island and downtown Cairo, within the Giza Governorate. The district is located in the historic upper Nile Delta, is part of the Greater Cairo metropolitan area. Imbaba is the name of an adjacent administrative centre in rural Giza Governorate, which has 18 villages in its jurisdiction. For centuries Imbaba was the final destination for camels brought from as far as Sudan and the Horn of Africa, to be sold in the village's Friday market; the market still exists, but is no longer as important as it was up to the turn of the 20th century due to increasing urbanisation. A map created by the General Authority for Physical Planning in 2012, shows details of areas within Imbaba which were unplanned, that at the time, were considered unsafe. Imbaba is densely populated. Pigeon breeding is a favorite activity of some of the neighborhood residents with access to rooftops. In late 1992, the "Islamic Group" expanded its influence in parts of Imbaba.
In November, the group purportedly announced the establishment of the "Emirate of Imbaba". This challenge to the sovereignty of the Egyptian state triggered the siege of Imbaba, beginning on December 8, 1992. In its course, the government deployed over 12,000 police and State Security forces, along with one hundred personnel carriers and bulldozers, all of which put an end to the Emirate; the Battle of the Pyramids known as the Battle of Embabeh, was a battle fought on July 21, 1798 between the French army in Egypt under Napoleon Bonaparte, local Mamluk forces. It occurred during France's Egyptian Campaign and was the battle where Napoleon put into use one of his significant contributions to tactics, the massive divisional square. Napoleon named the battle after the Egyptian pyramids, although they were only faintly visible on the horizon when the battle took place; the origin of the name Imbaba is not certain. So it is possible that the area was called so by Tigre speaking camel merchants and herders to describe the place where they met to do business.
2011 Imbaba Church Attacks "Few Focus on Religion in One Cairo Neighborhood" by Anthony Shadid, New York Times February 15, 2011
Cavalry or horsemen are soldiers or warriors who fight mounted on horseback. Cavalry were the most mobile of the combat arms. An individual soldier in the cavalry is known by a number of designations such as cavalryman, dragoon, or trooper; the designation of cavalry was not given to any military forces that used other animals, such as camels, mules or elephants. Infantry who moved on horseback, but dismounted to fight on foot, were known in the 17th and early 18th centuries as dragoons, a class of mounted infantry which evolved into cavalry proper while retaining their historic title. Cavalry had the advantage of improved mobility, a man fighting from horseback had the advantages of greater height and inertial mass over an opponent on foot. Another element of horse mounted warfare is the psychological impact a mounted soldier can inflict on an opponent; the speed and shock value of the cavalry was appreciated and exploited in armed forces in the Ancient and Middle Ages. In Europe cavalry became armoured, became known for the mounted knights.
During the 17th century cavalry in Europe lost most of its armor, ineffective against the muskets and cannon which were coming into use, by the mid-19th century armor had fallen into disuse, although some regiments retained a small thickened cuirass that offered protection against lances and sabres and some protection against shot. In the period between the World Wars, many cavalry units were converted into motorized infantry and mechanized infantry units, or reformed as tank troops. However, some cavalry still served during World War II, notably in the Red Army, the Mongolian People's Army, the Royal Italian Army, the Romanian Army, the Polish Land Forces, light reconnaissance units within the Waffen SS. Most cavalry units that are horse-mounted in modern armies serve in purely ceremonial roles, or as mounted infantry in difficult terrain such as mountains or forested areas. Modern usage of the term refers to units performing the role of reconnaissance and target acquisition. In many modern armies, the term cavalry is still used to refer to units that are a combat arm of the armed forces which in the past filled the traditional horse-borne land combat light cavalry roles.
These include scouting, skirmishing with enemy reconnaissance elements to deny them knowledge of own disposition of troops, forward security, offensive reconnaissance by combat, defensive screening of friendly forces during retrograde movement, restoration of command and control, battle handover and passage of lines, relief in place, breakout operations, raiding. The shock role, traditionally filled by heavy cavalry, is filled by units with the "armored" designation. Before the Iron Age, the role of cavalry on the battlefield was performed by light chariots; the chariot originated with the Sintashta-Petrovka culture in Central Asia and spread by nomadic or semi-nomadic Indo-Iranians. The chariot was adopted by settled peoples both as a military technology and an object of ceremonial status by the pharaohs of the New Kingdom of Egypt as well as the Assyrian army and Babylonian royalty; the power of mobility given by mounted units was recognized early on, but was offset by the difficulty of raising large forces and by the inability of horses to carry heavy armor.
Cavalry techniques were an innovation of equestrian nomads of the Central Asian and Iranian steppe and pastoralist tribes such as the Iranic Parthians and Sarmatians. The photograph above left shows Assyrian cavalry from reliefs of 865–860 BC. At this time, the men had no spurs, saddle cloths, or stirrups. Fighting from the back of a horse was much more difficult than mere riding; the cavalry acted in pairs. At this early time, cavalry used swords and bows; the sculpture implies two types of cavalry. Images of Assyrian cavalry show saddle cloths as primitive saddles, allowing each archer to control his own horse; as early as 490 BC a breed of large horses was bred in the Nisaean plain in Media to carry men with increasing amounts of armour, but large horses were still exceptional at this time. By the fourth century BC the Chinese during the Warring States period began to use cavalry against rival states, by 331 BC when Alexander the Great defeated the Persians the use of chariots in battle was obsolete in most nations.
The last recorded use of chariots as a shock force in continental Europe was during the Battle of Telamon in 225 BC. However, chariots remained in use for ceremonial purposes such as carrying the victorious general in a Roman triumph, or for racing. Outside of mainland Europe, the southern Britons met Julius Caesar with chariots in 55 and 54 BC, but by the time of the Roman conquest of Britain a century chariots were obsolete in Britannia; the last mention of chariot use in Britain was by the Caledonians at the Mons Graupius, in 84 AD. During the classical Greek period cavalry were limited to those citizens who could afford expensive war-horses. Three types of cavalry became common: light cavalry, whose riders, armed with javelins, could harass and skirmish.
The Nile is a major north-flowing river in northeastern Africa, is the longest river in Africa and in the world, though some sources cite the Amazon River as the longest. The Nile, about 6,650 km long, is an "international" river as its drainage basin covers eleven countries, Tanzania, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Republic of the Sudan and Egypt. In particular, the Nile is the primary water source of Sudan; the river Nile has the White Nile and Blue Nile. The White Nile is considered to be the headwaters and primary stream of the Nile itself; the Blue Nile, however, is the source of most of the silt. The White Nile is longer and rises in the Great Lakes region of central Africa, with the most distant source still undetermined but located in either Rwanda or Burundi, it flows north through Tanzania, Lake Victoria and South Sudan. The Blue Nile flows into Sudan from the southeast; the two rivers meet just north of the Sudanese capital of Khartoum. The northern section of the river flows north entirely through the Sudanese desert to Egypt ends in a large delta and flows into the Mediterranean Sea.
Egyptian civilization and Sudanese kingdoms have depended on the river since ancient times. Most of the population and cities of Egypt lie along those parts of the Nile valley north of Aswan, nearly all the cultural and historical sites of Ancient Egypt are found along river banks. In the ancient Egyptian language, the Nile is called Ḥ'pī or Iteru, meaning "river". In Coptic, the word ⲫⲓⲁⲣⲱ, pronounced piaro or phiaro, means "the river", comes from the same ancient name. In Egyptian Arabic, the Nile is called en-Nīl while in Standard Arabic. In Biblical Hebrew: הַיְאוֹר, Ha-Ye'or or הַשִׁיחוֹר, Ha-Shiḥor; the English name Nile and the Arabic names en-Nîl and an-Nîl both derive from the Latin Nilus and the Ancient Greek Νεῖλος. Beyond that, the etymology is disputed. Hesiod at his Theogony refers that Nilus was one of son of Oceanus and Tethys. Another derivation of Nile might be related to the term Nil, which refers to Indigofera tinctoria, one of the original sources of indigo dye. Another possible etymology derives it from a Semitic Nahal, meaning "river".
The standard English names "White Nile" and "Blue Nile", to refer to the river's source, derive from Arabic names applied only to the Sudanese stretches which meet at Khartoum. With a total length of about 6,650 km between the region of Lake Victoria and the Mediterranean Sea, the Nile is the longest river on the African continent; the drainage basin of the Nile covers about 10 % of the area of Africa. Compared to other major rivers, the Nile carries little water; the Nile basin is complex, because of this, the discharge at any given point along the mainstem depends on many factors including weather, diversions and evapotranspiration, groundwater flow. Above Khartoum, the Nile is known as the White Nile, a term used in a limited sense to describe the section between Lake No and Khartoum. At Khartoum the river is joined by the Blue Nile; the White Nile starts in equatorial East Africa, the Blue Nile begins in Ethiopia. Both branches are on the western flanks of the East African Rift; the source of the Nile is sometimes considered to be Lake Victoria, but the lake has feeder rivers of considerable size.
The Kagera River, which flows into Lake Victoria near the Tanzanian town of Bukoba, is the longest feeder, although sources do not agree on, the longest tributary of the Kagera and hence the most distant source of the Nile itself. It is either the Ruvyironza, which emerges in Bururi Province, Burundi, or the Nyabarongo, which flows from Nyungwe Forest in Rwanda; the two feeder rivers meet near Rusumo Falls on the Rwanda-Tanzania border. In 2010, an exploration party went to a place described as the source of the Rukarara tributary, by hacking a path up steep jungle-choked mountain slopes in the Nyungwe forest found an appreciable incoming surface flow for many kilometres upstream, found a new source, giving the Nile a length of 6,758 km. Gish Abay is the place where the "holy water" of the first drops of the Blue Nile develop; the Nile leaves Lake Nyanza at Ripon Falls near Uganda, as the Victoria Nile. It flows north for some 130 kilometers, to Lake Kyoga; the last part of the 200 kilometers river section starts from the western shores of the lake and flows at first to the west until just south of Masindi Port, where the river turns north makes a great half circle to the east and north until Karuma Falls.
For the remaining part it flows westerly through the Murchison Falls until it reaches the northern shores of Lake Albert where it forms a significant river delta. The lake itself is on the border of DR Congo. After leaving Lake Albert, the river is known as the Albert Nile; the Nile river flows into South Sudan just south of Nimule. Just south of the town it has the confluence with the Achwa River; the Bahr al Ghazal, itself 716 kilometers (44
Military tactics encompasses the art of organising and employing fighting forces on or near the battlefield. They involve the application of four battlefield functions which are related – kinetic or firepower, protection or security, shock action. Tactics are a separate function from control and logistics. In contemporary military science, tactics are the lowest of three levels of warfighting, the higher levels being the strategic and operational levels. Throughout history, there has been a shifting balance between the four tactical functions based on the application of military technology, which has led to one or more of the tactical functions being dominant for a period of time accompanied by the dominance of an associated fighting arm deployed on the battlefield, such as infantry, cavalry or tanks. Beginning with the use of melee and missile weapons such as clubs and spears, the kinetic or firepower function of tactics has developed along with technological advances so that the emphasis has shifted over time from the close-range melee and missile weapons to longer-range projectile weapons.
Kinetic effects were delivered by the sword, spear and bow until the introduction of artillery by the Romans. Until the mid 19th century, the value of infantry-delivered missile firepower was not high, meaning that the result of a given battle was decided by infantry firepower alone relying on artillery to deliver significant kinetic effects; the development of disciplined volley fire, delivered at close range, began to improve the hitting power of infantry, compensated in part for the limited range, poor accuracy and low rate of fire of early muskets. Advances in technology the introduction of the rifled musket, used in the Crimean War and American Civil War, meant flatter trajectories and improved accuracy at greater ranges, along with higher casualties; the resulting increase in defensive firepower meant infantry attacks without artillery support became difficult. Firepower became crucial to fixing an enemy in place to allow a decisive strike. Machine guns added to infantry firepower at the turn of the 20th century, the mobile firepower provided by tanks, self-propelled artillery and military aircraft rose in the century that followed.
Along with infantry weapons and other armoured vehicles, self-propelled artillery, guided weapons and aircraft provide the firepower of modern armies. Mobility, which determines how a fighting force can move, was for most of human history limited by the speed of a soldier on foot when supplies were carried by beasts of burden. With this restriction, most armies could not travel more than 32 kilometres per day, unless travelling on rivers. Only small elements of a force such as cavalry or specially trained light troops could exceed this limit; this restriction on tactical mobility remained until the latter years of World War I when the advent of the tank improved mobility sufficiently to allow decisive tactical manoeuvre. Despite this advance, full tactical mobility was not achieved until World War II when armoured and motorised formations achieved remarkable successes. However, large elements of the armies of World War II remained reliant on horse-drawn transport, which limited tactical mobility within the overall force.
Tactical mobility can be limited by the use of field obstacles created by military engineers. Personal armour has been worn since the classical period to provide a measure of individual protection, extended to include barding of the mount; the limitations of armour have always been weight and bulk, its consequent effects on mobility as well as human and animal endurance. By the 18th and 19th centuries, personal armour had been discarded, until the re-introduction of helmets during World War I in response to the firepower of artillery. Armoured fighting vehicles proliferated during World War II, after that war, body armour returned for the infantry in Western armies. Fortifications, which have been used since ancient times, provide collective protection, modern examples include entrenchments, barbed wire and minefields. Like obstacles, fortifications are created by military engineers. Shock action is as much a psychological function of tactics as a physical one, can be enhanced by the use of surprise.
It has been provided by charging infantry, well as by chariots, war elephants and armoured vehicles which provide momentum to an assault. It has been used in a defensive way, for example by the drenching flights of arrows from English longbowmen at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415 which caused the horses of the French knights to panic. During early modern warfare, the use of the tactical formations of columns and lines had a greater effect than the firepower of the formations alone. During the early stages of World War II, the combined effects of German machine gun and tank gun firepower, enhanced by accurate indirect fire and air attack broke up Allied units before their assault commenced, or caused them to falter due to casualties among key unit leaders. In both the early modern and World War II examples, the cumulative psychological shock effect on the enemy was greater than the actual casualties incurred; the development of tactics has involved a shifting balance between the four tactical functions since ancient times, changes in firepower and mobility have been fundamental to these changes.
Various models have been proposed to explain the interaction between the tactical functions and the dominance of individual fighting arms during different periods. J. F. C. Fuller proposed three "tactical cycles" in each of the classical and Chri