The next day Holofernes commanded all his army and all his people who had arrived take his side that they should remove their camp from opposite Bethulia and capture in advance the ascents of the hill country in order to make war against the children of Israel.
Then their strong men removed their camps on that day; and the army of the men of war was one hundred seventy thousand foot soldiers, and twelve thousand horsemen, besides the baggage and the other men who were afoot among them, a very great multitude.
Now the children of Israel, when they saw the multitude of them, were greatly troubled, and everyone said to his neighbor, "Now these men will wipe clean the face of the earth, for neither the high mountains, nor the valleys, nor the hills, are able to bear their weight."
For all the inhabitants of Bethulia have their water there; so thirst will kill them and they will give up their city, and we and our people will go up to the tops of the mountains nearby and will camp on them to watch so that none can go out of the city.
So the camp of the children of Ammon departed, and with them five thousand of the Assyrians, and they pitched camp in the valley and captured the waters and the origins of the waters of the children of Israel.
Then the children of Esau went up with the children of Ammon and camped in the hill country opposite Dothaim. And they sent some of them toward the south and toward the east opposite Ekrebel, near Chusi upon the brook Mochmur; and the rest of the army of the Assyrians camped in the plain and covered the face of the whole land; and their tents and carriages were pitched for a very great multitude.
Thus all the company of Assur remained around them, both their foot soldiers, chariots, and horsemen, for thirty-four days, so that all their vessels of water ran dry for all the inhabitants of Bethulia
Therefore their young children lost heart, and their women and young men fainted for thirst and fell down in the streets of the city and by the passageways of the gates; and there was no longer any strength in them.
For it is better for us to be made a spoil for them than to die of thirst; for we will be his servants, so that our souls may live and we will not see the death of our infants before our eyes, nor the dying of our wives or our children.
We present as witness against you: the heaven and the earth, and our God and Lord of our fathers, who punishes us according to our sins and the sins of our fathers, so that he will not allow what we have described to happen on this day."
And if these days pass and no help comes to us, I will do according to your word."
And he dispersed the people, each to their own posts; and they went to the walls and towers of their city, and sent the women and children into their houses; and they were brought very low in the city.