What does the phrase "The best defense is a good offense" mean?

In basketball per say, if you have top defense this will lead to steals and blocks which will lead to easy transition lay ups/dunks. In football same thing, the bears defense was pretty much the offense due to interceptions and fumble recoveries which lead to defensive touchdowns or good field position for the offense.
If you are always on the defense, the offense will keep attacking if they have less to lose and retreat if they have more to lose. ON the defensive side, all you can take is the same beating. And you are always going to be ongaurd while the offensive side knows they will never be attacked. THus, to eliminate your enemy by offense means to prevent always being ongaurd.

This means if you wish to defend well, you must offend before the enemy or opponent has time and energy to offend YOU. You must take the initiative so that you are already attacking and the enemy has not had enough time to put its offensive intentions if any, to use.

So... read your history.

Look to the German offensives of WWI and WWII....

And look to the Russian counter-offensives of the same wars.

And look to The Art of War by Sun Tzu and Clauswitz.
Simple people with hand guns dont charge machine guns.
If the enemy knows your ready to fight to the death, and have equal or superior firepower, it deters attacks.
Would you take a knife to a gunfight?
attack a 350lb biker?
kick a bear in the woods?
Simple Greater Offense Instills Fear and Respect, if nothing else, your opponent will think twice.
in times of confrontation a defense stops you moving forward and gives the attacker space... allowing them to really work you... to stop this, and indeed find the best chance of overcoming is take a step forward and take your own space with which to create...

this relates to conflict of physical or mental confrontation...

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