Sabotage, willful obstruction, damage, or destruction carried out to further some economic, military, political, or personal objective. Most commonly, it is a tactic employed by radical labor groups to hamper production during industrial strife and by underground organizations in wartime to disrupt a nation's war effort. One who commits sabotage is called a saboteur.
In labor disputes, sabotage is sometimes used in an attempt to force an employer to grant employee demands. Sabotage generally entails the deliberate disabling of machinery or destruction of materials. However, hindering production by an organized slowdown is also a form of sabotage. The main targets of wartime sabotage are usually military installations, transportation and communications systems, and other vital services and supplies.
The term sabotage had its origin in the early stages of the Industrial Revolution. Supposedly, it referred to attempts by some European laborers to wreck machinery that was replacing hand labor by throwing their sabots (wooden shoes) into it.