Front line

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The Forward Line of Troops, or FEBA (Front Edge of Battlefield Area) is a term used by most armed force services worldwide. It is a battlespace control measure that designates the forward-most friendly and hostile forces that are presently on the battlefield during an armed conflict or war; whether it be regular infantry or reconnaissance. It can also identify the forward location of covering and screening forces. Normally the FLOT is placed before, beyond, or at the forward-most edge of the battlefield.

The adjective variant, 'front-line' is used to describe weapons, ships or aircraft that are of the latest fighting standard, or army units intended to serve at the front line.

In pre-20th century wars, armies were normally discrete units – it was not until World War I that the size of armies reached such an extent (due to conscription and the use of rail transport for logistics) that it became possible to place continuous forces along the entire length of the front. As a result, World War I featured the most clearly defined front lines known to date: the frontlines in France became marked by dug trenches almost throughout.

In modern global conflicts, the warfare is being fought in methods of unconventional warfare, due to the rise of terrorism. Large war theaters and mechanized combat is becoming less frequent in today's battles.

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