cover image

Maneuver warfare

Military strategy focused on movement / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Dear Wikiwand AI, let's keep it short by simply answering these key questions:

Can you list the top facts and stats about Maneuver warfare?

Summarize this article for a 10 years old


Maneuver warfare, or manoeuvre warfare, is a military strategy which seeks to shatter the enemy's overall cohesion and will to fight.[1]

Japan Ground Self-Defense Force soldiers disembarking from their vehicles to counter a simulated ambush

Maneuver warfare, the use of initiative, originality and the unexpected, combined with a ruthless determination to succeed,[1] seeks to avoid opponents' strengths while exploiting their weaknesses and attacking their critical vulnerabilities and is the conceptual opposite of attrition warfare. Rather than seeking victory by applying superior force and mass to achieve physical destruction, maneuver uses preemption, deception, dislocation, and disruption to destroy the enemy's will and ability to fight.[2]

Historically, maneuver warfare was stressed by small militaries, more cohesive, better trained, or more technologically advanced than attrition warfare counterparts. The term "tactical maneuver" is used by maneuver warfare theorists to refer to movement by forces to gain "advantageous position relative to the enemy," as opposed to its use in the phrase "maneuver warfare."[3]

The idea of using rapid movement to keep an enemy off balance is as old as war itself.[4] However, advanced technology, such as the development of cavalry and mechanized vehicles, has led to an increased interest in the concepts of maneuver warfare and in its role on modern battlefields.