Strafing is the practice of attacking ground targets from low-flying aircraft. The term is usually applied to attack with aircraft-mounted automatic weapons [ [http://usmilitary.about.com/od/glossarytermss/g/s5995.htm strafing ] ] , but may be applied to attacks with bombs, though not high-level bomb delivery. By extension the term is sometimes applied to the firing of non-airborne automatic weapons while moving.
Strafing is frequently referred to as "Ground attack". Although the earliest use of military aircraft was for observation and directing of artillery strafing was frequently practiced in
World War I. Eddie Rickenbackerattacked a German artillery train at the Battle of St. Mihiel, [http://www.afa.org/magazine/July2007/0707strafing.asp] . World War IIsaw the advent of the ground-attack aircraftspecifically designed for the task of strafing. Many such aircraft also utilised non-strafing attack methods such as bombs or rockets.
The word is an adaptation of German "strafen", to
punish, specifically from the World War Ihumorous adaptation of the German catchphrase" Gott strafe England" [ [http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/strafe?view=uk "Gott strafe England" as origin of "to strafe"] ] .
This term has been adopted by certain
gamers to mean "sidestepping", primarily in first-person shooters (FPS)Fact|date=April 2008; in this context, it refers to the movementalone, even when no weapon is being fired. Sidestepping is an integral part of any first-person shooteras it allows the player to dodge incoming fire while keeping their view aimed at their target.
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