Military science is the theory, method, and practice of producing military capability in a manner consistent with national defense policy.]citation needed[ Military science serves to identify the strategic, political, economic, psychological, social, operational, technological, and tactical elements necessary to sustain relative advantage of military force; and to increase the likelihood and favorable outcomes of victory in peace or during a war. Military scientists include theorists, researchers, experimental scientists, applied scientists, designers, engineers, test technicians, and other military personnel.
Military personnel obtain weapons, equipment and training to achieve specific strategic goals. Military science is also used to establish enemy capability as part of technical intelligence.
Military tactics can be described as the science and art of organizing a military force, and the techniques for using weapons or military units in combination for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. Changes in philosophy and technology over time have been reflected in changes to military tactics. In current military thought, tactics are the lowest of three planning levels. The highest tier of planning is the strategy, which is about how force is translated into political objectives, or more specifically how you bridge the means and ends of war together. An intermediate level, which converts strategy into tactics is the operational level that deals with formations of units. In common vernacular, "tactical" decisions are those made to achieve greatest immediate value and "strategic" decisions are those made to achieve the greatest overall value irrespective of immediate return.
Military tactics are both a science and an art. They answer the questions of how best to deploy and employ forces on a small scale. Some practices have not changed since the dawn of warfare: ambushes, seeking and turning flanks, maintaining reconnaissance, creating and using obstacles and defences, etc. Using ground to best advantage has not changed much either. Heights, rivers, swamps, passes, choke points, and natural cover, can all be used in multiple ways. Before the nineteenth century, many military tactics were confined to battlefield concerns: how to maneuver units during combat in open terrain. Nowadays, specialized tactics exist for many situations, for example for securing a room in a building.
The first use of horses in warfare occurred over 5,000 years ago. The earliest evidence of horses ridden in warfare dates from Eurasia between 4000 and 3000 BC. A Sumerian illustration of warfare from 2500 BC depicts some type of equine pulling wagons. By 1600 BC, improved harness and chariot designs made chariot warfare common throughout the Ancient Near East, and the earliest written training manual for war horses was a guide for training chariot horses written about 1350 BC. As formal cavalry tactics replaced the chariot, so did new training methods, and by 360 BC, the Greek cavalry officer Xenophon had written an extensive treatise on horsemanship. The effectiveness of horses in battle was also revolutionized by improvements in technology, including the invention of the saddle, the stirrup, and later, the horse collar.
Many different types and sizes of horse were used in war, depending on the form of warfare. The type used varied with whether the horse was being ridden or driven, and whether they were being used for reconnaissance, cavalry charges, raiding, communication, or supply. Throughout history, mules and donkeys as well as horses played a crucial role in providing support to armies in the field.
Heavy infantry refers to heavily armed and armoured ground troops, as opposed to medium or light infantry, in which the warriors are relatively lightly armoured. As modern infantry troops usually define their subgroups differently (such as by weapon or type of attack), 'heavy infantry' almost always is used to describe pre-gunpowder age troops.]citation needed[
In ancient Greece the Hoplite was a common form of heavy infantry. All hoplites had a shield and spear, and perhaps a helmet as well. Wealthier hoplites were able to afford bronze breastplate or linothorax armor, while poorer hoplites wore little to no armor. The hoplite armor and shield were designed to block arrows and blows from spear points and swords. Hoplites would act as both a city watch and as an army in the field. Hoplites were thought of as a force to be reckoned with because they would form a phalanx, a tight band of spearmen, which aided them against lighter infantry and cavalry.
Cavalry (from French cavalerie, cf. cheval 'horse') or horsemen were soldiers or warriors who fought mounted on horseback. Cavalry were historically the third oldest (after infantry and chariotry) and the most mobile of the combat arms. A soldier in the cavalry is known by a number of designations such as cavalryman, horseman or trooper.
The designation of cavalry was not usually given to any military force that used other animals, such as camels or mules. 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 later evolved into cavalry proper while retaining their historic title.
Military animals are non-human creatures that are used in warfare. They are used as working animals to aid in combat related applications or weaponized. Domesticated animals such as dogs, pigs, oxen, camels and horses are used for functions such as transport and bomb detection. Elephants, pigeons and rats were also used during wartime, and dolphins, dwarf orcas and sea lions are in active use.
Combat or fighting is a purposeful violent conflict meant to weaken, establish dominance over, or kill the opposition, or to drive the opposition away from a location where it is not wanted or needed.
The term combat (French for fight) typically refers to armed conflict between military forces in warfare, whereas the more general term "fighting" can refer to any violent conflict between individuals or nations. Combat violence can be unilateral, whereas fighting implies at least a defensive reaction. However, the terms are often used synonymously along with the term "Battle Ready". A large-scale fight is known as a battle.