The Great Battle of Thermopylae had just ended, with Xerxes' Persian army taking out the last 300 Spartans. Our outnumbered Athenians, along with the Spartans and other warriors from the different city-state, fought off the Persians for two days. Then the Persians took a back route, sneaking up on the Spartans and annihilating them. One reason for the early success of the Greeks was because they used a method called a phalanx, where they stood together, using their tough shields to fend off Persian arrows, and using their long spears to stab the Persians to death. Leonidas forced the Persians into a narrow mountain pass, giving the advantage to the Greeks given their close-combat fighting style, using swords, spears and shields. .
After two days and many men killed, Xerxes and his Persian army strategized a counter attack, going around the backside of the mountain range to sneak up on the Greeks. Leonidas, I of Sparta, who strategized this battle so well, knew he was outmatched, and sent all the Greeks home to defend Athens, leaving only the 300 Spartans, the most dangerous killers in the west and possibly the world. Spartan men are trained from the age of 8 to kill and not feel pain. Spartans are ferocious, with a desire for blood. They show true unity. In the Phalanx they stand side by side, fighting with each other for each other These Spartans fought hard, but 300 of them could not take the massive Persian army. Arrows rained down on them, striking them dead one by one, until 300 turned to zero. In talking to one Athenian soldier, he said the Persian Army "had huge numbers" and "They were skillful with arrows, but fighting on the ground they were weak." It was the arrows that the Spartans hated most, but it was the arrows that struck them dead. A Persian attack on Athens is expected, as Xerxes will most likely try to fulfill the wish of Cyrus, his father: to end the reign of Athens.