Features include interactive map, in-depth stories, and more.Download now. »
The week's top five must-sees,
delivered to your inbox.
An offensive is a military operation that seeks through aggressive projection of armed force to occupy territory, gain an objective or achieve some larger strategic, operational or tactical goal. Another term for an offensive often used by the media is 'invasion', or the more general 'attack'. The offensive was considered a pre-eminent means of producing victory, although with the recognition of a defensive phase at some stage of the execution. A quick guide to the size or scope of the offensive is to consider the number of troops involved in the side initiating the offensive. Offensives are largely conduced as a means to secure initiative in a confrontation between opponents. They can be waged on land, at sea or in the air. Naval offensives, such as the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, can have wide-ranging implications for national strategies, and require significant logistics commitment to destroy enemy military naval capabilities. It can also be used to interdict enemy shipping, such as the Battle of the Atlantic. Naval offensives can also be tactical in nature such as the Coronado IX operation conducted by the United States Navy's Mobile Riverine Force during the Vietnam War. (via Freebase)