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Encirclement

 

Disciplines > Warfare > Tactics > Encirclement

Action | Analysis | Example | Analogy | See also

 

Action

Encircle your enemy. Block off all routes so they cannot escape your clutches.

Make it difficult and unwise for them to attack you at any one point.

Prevent communications out and supplies in.

Gradually tighten the noose, narrowing their choices until their only option is surrender.

Analysis

Encirclement is different from siege in both scope timescales. A siege is of a fixed and fortified settlement, and can last months or years. Encirclement happens anywhere and can last minutes to days.

Encirclement is a very disempowering and disconcerting position for the encircled force. They realize their dilemma slowly and with increasing panic as they wheel this way and that, only to find all exits blocked.

As a trapped animal, after the panic of discovery, they eventually quieten into a morose depression. It is when they are in this state that they become open to negotiation and consideration of peaceful conclusion. If you would destroy them utterly, now is a time this may best be carried out, though when people a cornered they will often fight with a desperation that makes obliteration an expensive affair.

Example

 

Analogy

In negotiation show the other person that there is no way out other than a mutually agreed settlement. Find out their intended walk-away alternatives and block these. Whichever way they turn, they should find no way out other than the way you want them to go.

See also

Flanking

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