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Close combat means a violent physical
confrontation Confrontation is an element of Conflict (process), conflict wherein parties confront one another, directly engaging one another in the course of a dispute between them. A confrontation can be at any scale, between any number of people, between ent ...

confrontation
between two or more opponents at short range.''MCRP 3-02B: Close Combat'', Washington, D.C.: Department Of The Navy, Headquarters United States Marine Corps, 12 February 1999Matthews, Phil, CQB Services, retrieved 29 July 2011: At his Specialist Close Combat Course, combat instructor Capt.
William E. Fairbairn William Ewart Fairbairn (; 28 February 1885 – 20 June 1960) was a British Royal Marine The Corps of Royal Marines (RM) is an amphibious Amphibious means able to use either land or water. In particular it may refer to: * ''Amphibious'' ( ...
defined close combat as "fighting an enemy hand to hand or within 20 yards range.”


Armed and unarmed confrontations

Among many types of fighting encompassed by the general term ''close combat'' are the modern terms ''
hand-to-hand combat Hand-to-hand combat (sometimes abbreviated as HTH or H2H) is a physical confrontation between two or more persons at short range (grappling Grappling, in hand-to-hand combat Hand-to-hand combat (sometimes abbreviated as HTH or H2H) is a ph ...
'' (HTH) and ''
close-quarters combat Close-quarters combat (CQC) or close-quarters battle (CQB) is a tactical situation that involves a physical fight with firearms involved between multiple combatant Combatant is the legal status of an individual who has the right to engage in host ...
'' (CQC). Close combat occurs when opposing military forces engage in restricted areas, an environment frequently encountered in
urban warfare Urban warfare is combat Combat (French language, French for ''fight'') is a purposeful violence, violent conflict meant to physically harm or kill the opposition. Combat may be armed (using weapons) or unarmed (Hand-to-hand combat, not using ...
. Military small unit tactics traditionally regarded as forms of close combat include fighting with hand-held or hand-thrown weapons such as swords, knives, axes, or tools. In modern times, (since World War II), the term "close combat" has also come to describe unarmed
hand-to-hand combat Hand-to-hand combat (sometimes abbreviated as HTH or H2H) is a physical confrontation between two or more persons at short range (grappling Grappling, in hand-to-hand combat Hand-to-hand combat (sometimes abbreviated as HTH or H2H) is a ph ...
, as well as combat involving firearms and other distance weapons when used at short range, generally within a 100 meters (110 yards) or less.
William E. Fairbairn William Ewart Fairbairn (; 28 February 1885 – 20 June 1960) was a British Royal Marine The Corps of Royal Marines (RM) is an amphibious Amphibious means able to use either land or water. In particular it may refer to: * ''Amphibious'' ( ...
, who organized and led the famous Shanghai Riot Squad of the
Shanghai Municipal Police , mottotranslated = All joined as one , formed = September 1854 , dissolved = 31 July 1943 , superseding = , employees = , volunteers = , budget = , nongovernment = , country ...
, devised a system of close-combat fighting for both soldiers and civilians which bears his name, "the Fairbairn system", incorporating use of the handgun, knife, and the
Defendu Close Quarters Combat System (i.e. Defendu) is a modern martial art Martial arts are codified systems and traditions of combat practiced for a number of reasons such as self-defense; military A military, also known collectively as armed ...
martial art Martial arts are codified systems and traditions of combat practiced for a number of reasons such as self-defense; military and law enforcement applications; combat sport, competition; physical, mental, and spiritual development; entertainment; and ...
fighting technique. Since that time, the term "close combat" has also been used to describe a short-range physical confrontation between antagonists not involved in a military conflict, for example in riots and other violent conflicts between law enforcement personnel and civilians.


Examples

* The
Battle of Isandlwana The Battle of Isandlwana (alternative spelling: Isandhlwana) on 22 January 1879 was the first major encounter in the Anglo-Zulu War The Anglo-Zulu War was fought in 1879 between the British Empire The British Empire was composed ...
on 22 January 1879, the first battle in the
Anglo-Zulu War The Anglo-Zulu War was fought in 1879 between the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ...
, turned into close combat when the British exhausted their ammunition. It resulted in a decisive victory for Zulus over the modern British army. * On October 22, 1986, during the
Pudu Prison siege The pudus (Mapudungun Mapuche () or Mapudungun (from ' 'land' and ' 'speak, speech') is an Araucanian language related to Huilliche The Huilliche , Huiliche or Huilliche-Mapuche are the southern partiality of the Mapuche macroethnic grou ...
, the Special Actions Unit (special ops unit of the Royal Malaysia Police) turned to hand-to-hand combat, using batons and rattan canes, after the Malaysian Prime Minister ordered the resolution of the hostage crisis without the use of firearms. The result was a victory for the police, and the five prisoners holding hostages in Pudu Prison were arrested. *
Battle of Danny Boy The Battle of Danny Boy took place close to the city of Amarah Amarah ( ar, ٱلْعَمَارَة, al-ʿAmārah), also spelled Amara, is a city in south-eastern Iraq, located on a low ridge next to the Tigris River waterway south of Baghdad abo ...
took place close to the city of Amarah in southern Iraq on 14 May 2004, between British soldiers and about 100 Iraqi insurgents of the Mahdi Army. The insurgents ambushed a patrol of Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders close to a checkpoint known as Danny Boy near Majar al-Kabir. The Argylls called in reinforcements from the 1st Battalion of the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment; the latter were also ambushed and due to an electronic communications failure it was some time before further British relief arrived. While waiting for reinforcements the British were involved in one of the fiercest engagements they fought in Iraq. The fighting involved close-quarter rifle fire and bayonets. The battle lasted for about three hours during which 28 Mahdi Army insurgents were killed; the British suffered some wounded, but none were killed in the action. *
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House The Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, sometimes more simply referred to as the Battle of Spotsylvania (or the 19th-century spelling Spottsylvania), was the second major battle in Lieutenant general (United States), Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant a ...
during the American Civil war. The men of the Northern and Southern armies were periodically forced into a bloody hand to hand struggle reminiscent of ancient battles, with the men using swords, knives, bayonets, and even sticks and bare hands.


See also

*
Close-quarters combat Close-quarters combat (CQC) or close-quarters battle (CQB) is a tactical situation that involves a physical fight with firearm A firearm is any type of gun A gun is a ranged weapon designed to use a shooting tube ( gun barrel) to lau ...
*
Charge (warfare) A charge is an offensive Offensive may refer to: * Offensive, the former name of the Dutch political party Socialist Alternative (Netherlands), Socialist Alternative * Offensive (military), an attack * Offensive language ** Fighting words or in ...
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Melee weapon A melee weapon, hand weapon or close combat weapon is any handheld weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and e ...
*
Combatives Combatives is the term for hand-to-hand combat training and techniques within the United States military. History Sometimes called Close-Quarters Combat (CQC or close combat), World War II World War II or the Second World War, o ...
*
Ranged weapon A ranged weapon is any weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting, ...


References

{{DEFAULTSORT:Close Combat Hybrid martial arts
Hand A hand is a prehensile, multi- fingered appendage located at the end of the forearm The forearm is the region of the upper limb between the Elbow-joint, elbow and the wrist. The term forearm is used in anatomy to distinguish it from the arm, ...