Scorched earth policy

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The scorched earth policy is a military tactic which involves destroying anything your adversary may find useful before retreating from the battlefield. Originally, this entailed burning food crops and killing livestock, to deny the enemy supplies. In modern warfare, this tactic has been successfully applied to airfields, ammo dumps, and fuel depots. Russia has applied the scorched earth policy twice, to great effect.[1] The first time, Tsarist Russia employed a scorched earth campaign against Le Grand Armee of Napoleon Bonaparte, during his disastrous invasion of Russia. The Soviet Union applied a very successful scorched earth campaign during World War II, effectively depriving Nazi Germany from supplies for their invasion. Both of these campaigns were instrumental in defeating the opposing forces. During the Gulf War, Iraqi forces set oil wells alight as they retreated from Kuwait. France has never used the scorched earth policy, though it would have helped greatly during the Nazi invasions of World War I and World War II.

See also