American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The policy of devastating all land and buildings in the course of advancing or retreating troops so as to leave nothing salvageable to the enemy.
- n. A military strategy that involves destroying buildings, crops, and other resources that could be useful to enemy forces.
- n. figuratively Any strategy that involves some type of drastic action.
- n. the target company defends itself by selling off its crown jewels
“The Persian leader had already applied a scorched-earth policy to the lands north of these passes and had his men waiting to strike the Macedonians as they struggled across the mountains.”
“To make the situation worse, little food or fodder was available in a land that had suffered the scorched-earth policy of Bessus.”
“The Persian satrap of Cilicia was Arsames, who had been present at the conference before the battle of the Granicus, at which Memnon had advised a scorched-earth policy to hinder the Macedonians.”
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