assail (

     v 1: attack someone physically or emotionally; "The mugger
          assaulted the woman"; "Nightmares assailed him
          regularly" [syn: assault, set on, attack]
     2: launch an attack or assault on; begin hostilities with, as
        in warfare; "Hitler attacked Poland on September 1, 1939
        and started World War II"; "Serbian forces assailed
        Bosnian towns all week" [syn: attack] [ant: defend]
     3: attack verbally, in speech or writing; "The editors of the
        left-leaning paper attacked the new House Speaker" [syn: attack,
         round, lash out, snipe, assault]