The Art of War by Sun Tzu: Entire Unabridged Audiobook

The Art of War by Sun Tzu: Entire Unabridged Audiobook

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Sun tzu and the art of war chapter one laying plans suntsu said the art of war is of vital importance to the state it is a matter of life and death a road either to safety or to ruin hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected

The art of war then is governed by five constant factors to be taken into account in one’s deliberations when seeking to determine the conditions obtaining in the field these are one the moral law two heaven three earth four the commander five method and discipline the moral law causes the people to be in

Complete accord with their ruler so that they will follow him regardless of their lives undismayed by any danger heaven signifies night and day cold and heat times and seasons earth comprises distances great and small danger and security open ground and narrow passes the chances of life and death

The commander stands for the virtues of wisdom sincerity benevolence courage and strictness by method and discipline are to be understood the marshalling of the army in its proper subdivisions the graduations of rank among the officers the maintenance of roads by which supplies may reach the army and the control of military expenditure

These five heads should be familiar to every general he who knows them will be victorious he who knows him not will fail therefore in your deliberations when seeking to determine the military conditions let them be made the basis of a comparison in this wise one which of the two sovereigns is imbued

With the moral law two which of the two generals has most ability three with whom let the advantages derive from heaven and earth four on which side is discipline most rigorously enforced five which army is stronger six on which side are officers and men more highly trained seven

In which army is there the greater constancy both in reward and punishment by means of these seven considerations i can forecast victory or defeat the general that hearkens to my council and acts upon it will conquer let such a one be retained in command the general that hearkens not to my

Council nor acts upon it will suffer defeat let such a one be dismissed while heeding the prophet of my counsel avail yourselves also of any helpful circumstances over and beyond the ordinary rules accordingly as circumstances are favorable one should modify one’s plans all warfare is based on deception hence

When able to attack we must seem unable when using our forces we must seem inactive when we are near we must make the enemy believe we are far away when far away we must make him believe we are near hold out baits to entice the enemy feign disorder and crush him

If he is secure at all points be prepared for him if he is in superior strength evade him if your opponent is a calyric temper seek to irritate him pretend to be weak that he may grow arrogant if he is taking his ease give him no rest if his forces are united separate

Them attack him when he is unprepared appear where you are not expected these military devices leading to victory must not be divulged beforehand now the general who wins a battle makes many calculations in his temple heir the battle is fought the general who loses a battle makes but few calculations beforehand

Thus do many calculations lead to victory and few calculations to defeat how much more no calculation at all it is by attention to this point that i can foresee who is likely to win or lose chapter 2 waging war suntsu said in the operations of war

Where there are in the field a thousand swift chariots as many heavy chariots and a hundred thousand male glad soldiers with provisions enough to carry them a thousandly the expenditure at home and at the front including entertainment of guests small items such as glue and paint and some spent on chariots and armor

Will reach the total of a thousand ounces of silver per day such is the cost of raising an army of one hundred thousand men when you engage in actual fighting if victory is long in coming then men’s weapons will grow dull and their ardor will be damped

If you lay siege to a town you will exhaust your strength again if the campaign is protracted the resources of the state will not be equal to the strain now when your weapons are dulled your ardor damped your strength exhausted and your treasure spent other chieftains will spring up to take

Advantage of your extremity then no man however wise will be able to avert the consequences that must ensue thus though we have heard of stupid haste in war cleverness has never been seen associated with long delays there is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged war it is only

One who is thoroughly acquainted with the evils of war that can thoroughly understand the profitable way of carrying it on a skillful soldier does not raise a second levy neither are his supply wagons loaded more than twice bring war material with you from home but forage on the enemy

Thus the army will have food enough for its needs poverty of the state exchequer causes an army to be maintained by contributions from a distance contributing to maintain an army at a distance causes the people to be impoverished on the other hand the proximity of an army causes prices to go up

And high prices cause the people’s substance to be drained away when their substance is drained away the peasantry will be afflicted by heavy exactions with this loss of substance and exhaustion of strength the homes of the people will be stripped bare and three tenths of their income will be

Dissipated while government expenses for broken chariots worn out horses breastplates and helmets bows and arrows spears and shields protective mantles draft oxen and heavy wagons will amount to four tenths of its total revenue hence a wise general makes a point of foraging on the enemy one cartload of the enemy’s provisions

Is equivalent to 20 of one’s own and likewise a single pickle from his prevender is equal to 20 from one’s own store now in order to kill the enemy our men must be roused to anger that there may be advantage from defeating the enemy they must have their rewards

Therefore in chariot fighting when ten or more chariots have been taken those should be rewarded who took the first our own flag should be substituted for those of the enemy and the chariots mingled and used in conjunction with our own the captured soldiers should be kindly treated and kept

This is called using the conquered foe to augment one’s own strength in war then let your great object be victory not lengthy campaigns thus it may be known that the leader of armies is the arbiter of the people’s fate the man on whom it depends whether the

Nation shall be in peace or in peril chapter 3 attack by stratagem sun tzu said in the practical art of war the best thing of all is to take the enemy’s country whole and intact to shout and destroy it is not so good so too it is

Better to recapture an army entire than to destroy it to capture a regiment a detachment or a company entire than to destroy them hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting thus the highest form of generalship is

To bulk the enemy’s plans the next best is to prevent the junction of the enemy’s forces the next in order is to attack the enemy’s army in the field and the worst policy of all is to besiege walled cities the rule is not to besiege walled cities

If it can possibly be avoided the preparation of mantlets movable shelters and various implements of war will take up three whole months and the piling up of mounds over against the walls will take three months more the general unable to control his irritation will launch his men to the

Assault like swarming ants with the result that one third of his men are slain while the town still remains untaken such are the disastrous effects of a siege therefore the skilled leader subdues the enemy’s troops without any fighting he captures their cities without laying siege to them he overthrows their

Kingdom without lengthy operations in the field with his forces intact he will dispute the mastery of the empire and thus without losing a man his triumph will be complete this is the method of attacking by stratagem it is the rule in war if our forces are

Tend to the enemies one to surround him if five to one to attack him if twice as numerous to divide our army into two if equally matched we can offer battle is slightly inferior in numbers we can avoid the enemy if quite unequal in every way we can flee from him

Hence though an obstinate fight may be made by a small force in the end it must be captured by the larger force now the general is the bulwark of the state if the bulwark is complete at all points the state will be strong if the bulwark is defective the state will be weak

There are three ways in which a ruler can bring misfortune upon his army by commanding the army to advance or to retreat being ignorant to the fact that it cannot obey this is called hobbling the army by attempting to govern an army in the same way as he administers a kingdom

Being ignorant of the conditions which obtain an army this causes restlessness in the soldiers minds by employing the officers of his army without discrimination through ignorance of the military principle of adaption to circumstances this shakes the confidence of the soldiers but when the army is restless and

Distrustful trouble is sure to come from the other feudal princes this is simply bringing anarchy into the army and flinging victory away thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory one he will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight

Two he will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces 3. he will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks 4. he will win who prepared himself waits to take the enemy unprepared 5. he will win who has military capacity

And is not interfered with by the sovereign hence the saying if you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the result of a hundred battles if you know yourself but not the enemy for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat if you know neither the enemy nor

Yourself you will succumb in every battle chapter 4 tactical dispositions suntsu said the good fighters of old first put themselves beyond the possibility of defeat and then waited for an opportunity of defeating the enemy to secure ourselves against defeat lies in our own hands but the opportunity of

Defeating the enemy is provided by the enemy himself thus the good fighter is able to secure himself against defeat but cannot make certain of defeating the enemy hence the saying one may know how to conquer without being able to do it security against defeat implies defensive tactics

Ability to defeat the enemy means taking the offensive standing on the defensive indicates insufficient strength attacking a super abundance of strength the general who is skilled in defense hides in the most secret recesses of the earth he who is skilled in attack flashes falls from the topmost heights of heaven

Thus on one hand we have ability to protect ourselves on the other a victory that is complete to see victory only when it is within the can of the common herd is not the acme of excellence neither is it the acme of excellence if you fight and conquer and the whole

Empire says well done to lift an autumn hair is no sign of great strength to see the sun and moon is no sign of sharp sight to hear the noise of thunder is no sign of a quick ear what the ancients called a clever fighter is one who not only wins but

Excels in winning with ease hence his victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom nor credit for courage he wins his battles by making no mistakes making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated hence the skillful fighter puts himself

Into a position which makes defeat impossible and does not miss the moment for defeating the enemy thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory the consummate leader cultivates the

Moral law and strictly adheres to method and discipline thus it is in his power to control success in respect of military method we have firstly measurement secondly estimation of quantity thirdly calculation fourthly balancing of chances fifthly victory measurement owes its existence to earth estimation of quantity to measurement calculation to estimation of quantity

Balancing of chances to calculation and victory to balancing of chances a victorious army opposed to a routed one is as a pound weight placed in a scale against a single grain the on rush of a conquering force is like the bursting of pent-up waters into a chasm a thousand fathoms deep chapter five

Energy sun tzu said the control of a large force is the same principle as the control of a few men it is merely a question of dividing up their numbers fighting with a large army under your command is no wise different from fighting with a small one it is merely a

Question of instituting signs and signals to ensure that your whole host may withstand the brunt of the enemy’s attack and remain unshaken this is effective by maneuvers direct and indirect then the impact of your army may be like a grindstone dashed against an egg this is affected by the science of weak

Points and strong in all fighting the direct method may be used for joining battle but indirect methods will be needed in order to secure victory indirect tactics efficiently applied are inexhaustible as heaven and earth and ending as the flow of rivers and streams like the sun and moon they end but to

Begin anew like the four seasons they pass away to return once more there are not more than five musical notes yet the combinations of these five give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard there are not more than five primary colors blue yellow red white black

Yet in combination they produce more hues that can ever be seen there are not more than five cardinal tastes sour acrid salt sweet bitter yet combinations of them yield more flavors than can ever be tasted in battles there are not more than two methods of attack the direct and the

Indirect yet these two in combination give rise to an endless series of maneuvers the direct and the indirect lead on to each other in turn it is like moving in a circle you never come to an end who can exhaust the possibilities of their combination

The onset of troops is like the rush of a torrent which will even roll stones along in its course the quality of decision is like the well-timed swoop of a falcon which enables it to strike and destroy its victim therefore the good fighter will be terrible in his onset and prompt in his

Decision energy may be likened to the bending of a crossbow decision to the releasing of a trigger amid the turmoil and tumult of battle there may be seeming disorder and yet no real disorder at all amid confusion and chaos your array may be without head or tail yet it will be

Proof against defeat simulated disorder postulates perfect discipline simulated fear postulates courage simulated weakness postulates strength hiding order between the cloak of disorder is simply a question of subdivision concealing courage under a show of timidity presupposes a fund of latent energy masking strength with weakness is to be affected by tactical dispositions

Thus one who is skillful at keeping the enemy on the move maintains deceitful appearances according to which the enemy will act he sacrifices something that the enemy may snatch at by holding our baits he keeps him on the march then with the body of pikmin he lies in wait for him

The clever competent looks to the effect of combined energy does not require too much from individuals hence his ability to pick out the right men and utilize combined energy when he utilizes combined energy his fighting men become as it were like onto rolling logs or stones

For it is in the nature of a log or a stone to remain motionless on level ground and to move when on a slope if four cornered to come to a standstill but if round shaped to go rolling down thus the energy developed by good fighting men is as the momentum of a

Round stone rolled down a mountain thousands of feet in height so much on the subject of energy chapter six weak points and strong sun tzu said whoever is first in the field and awaits the coming of the enemy will be fresh for the fight whoever is

Second in the field and has to hasten to battle will arrive exhausted therefore the clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy but does not allow the enemy’s will to be imposed on him by holding out advantages to him he can cause the enemy to approach of his own accord

Or by inflicting damage he can make it impossible for the enemy to draw near if the enemy is taking his ease he can harass him if well supplied with food he can starve him out if quietly encamped he can force him to move appear at points which the enemy must hasten to defend

March swiftly to places where you are not expected an army may march great distances without distress if it marches through country where the enemy is not you can be sure of succeeding in your attacks if you only attack places which are undefended you can ensure the safety of your

Defense if you only hold positions that cannot be attacked hence that general is skillful attack whose opponent does not know what to defend and he is skillful in defense whose opponent does not know what to attack no divine art of subtlety and secrecy through you we learn to be invisible

Through you inaudible and hence we can hold the enemy’s fate in our hands you may advance and be absolutely irresistible if you make for the enemy’s weak points you may retire and be safe for pursuit if your movements are more rapid than those of the enemy

If we wish to fight the enemy can be forced to an engagement even though he be sheltered behind a high rampart and a deep ditch all we need to do is attack some other place that he will be obliged to relieve if we do not wish to fight we can

Prevent the enemy from engaging us even though the lines of our encampment be merely traced out on the ground all we need to do is to throw something odd and unaccountable in his way by discovering the enemy’s dispositions and remaining invisible ourselves we can keep our forces concentrated while the

Enemies must be divided we can form a single united body while the enemy must split up into fractions hence there will be a hole pitted against separate parts of a hole which means that we shall be many to the enemy’s few and if we are able thus to attack an

Inferior force with the superior one our opponents will be in dire straits the spot where we intend to fight must not be made known for then the enemy will have to prepare against a possible attack at several different points and his forces being thus distributed in many directions the numbers we shall

Have to face at any given point will be proportionately few four should the enemy strengthen his van he will weaken his rear should he strengthen his rear he will weaken his van should he strengthen his left he will weaken his right should he strengthen his right he will weaken his left

If he sends reinforcements everywhere he will everywhere be weak numerical weakness comes from having to prepare against possible attacks numerical strength from compelling our adversary to make these preparations against us knowing the place and the time of the coming battle we may concentrate from the greatest distances in order to fight

But if neither time nor place be known then the left wing will be impotent to sucker the right the right equally impotent to sucker the left the van unable to relieve the rear or the rear to support the van how much more so if the furthest portions of the army are anything under

A hundred lie apart and even the nearest are separated by several li though according to my estimate the soldiers away exceeded our only number that shall advantage them nothing in the matter of victory i say then that victory can be achieved though the enemy be stronger in numbers

We may prevent him from fighting schemes as to discover his plans and the likelihood of their success arouse him and learn the principle of his activity or inactivity force him to reveal himself so as to find out his vulnerable spots carefully compare the opposing army with

Your own so that you may know where strength is super abundant and where it is deficient in making tactical dispositions the highest pitch you can attain is to conceal them conceal your dispositions and you will be safe from the prying of the subtlest spies from the machinations of the wisest brains

How victory may be produced for them out of the enemy’s own tactics that is what the multitude cannot comprehend all men can see the tactics whereby i conquer but what none can seize the strategy out of which victory is evolved do not repeat the tactics which have

Gained you one victory but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances military tactics are like underwater for water in its natural course runs away from high places and hastens downwards so in war the way is to avoid what is strong and to strike at what is weak

Water shapes its course according to the nature of the ground over which it flows the soldier works out his victory in relation to the foe whom he is facing therefore just as water retains no constant shape so in warfare there are no constant conditions he who can modify his tactics in

Relation to his opponent and thereby succeed in winning may be called a heaven-born captain the five elements water fire wood metal earth are not always equally predominant the four seasons make way for each other in turn there are short days and long the moon has its periods of waning and waxing

Chapter 7 maneuvering sun tzu said in war the general receives his command from the sovereign having collected an army and concentrated his forces he must blend and harmonize the different elements thereof before pitching his camp after that comes tactical maneuvering than which there is nothing more difficult the difficulty of tactical maneuvering

Consists in turning the devious into the direct and misfortune into gain thus to take on long and sequitus root after enticing the enemy out of the way and those starting after him to contrive to reach the goal before him shows knowledge of the artifice of deviation maneuvering with an army is advantageous

With an undisciplined multitude most dangerous if you set a fully equipped army in march in order to snatch an advantage the chances are that you will be too late on the other hand to detach a flying column for the purpose involves the sacrifice of its baggage and stores

Thus if you order your men to roll up their buff coats and make forced marches without halting day or night covering double the usual distance at a stretch doing a hundred li in order to rest an advantage the leaders of all your three divisions will fall into the hands of the enemy

The stronger men will be in front the jaded ones will fall behind and on this plan only one tenth of your army will reach its destination if you march 50 li in order to outmaneuver the enemy you will lose the leader of your first division and only

Half your force will reach the goal if you march 30 li with the same object two-thirds of your army will arrive we may take it then that an army without its baggage train is lost without provisions it is lost without basis of supply it is lost we cannot enter into alliance until we

Are acquainted with the designs of our neighbors we’re not fit to lead an army on the march unless we are familiar with the face of the country its mountains and forests its pitfalls and precipices its marshes and swamps we shall be unable to turn natural advantage to account unless we make use

Of local guides in war practice dissimulation and you will succeed whether to concentrate or to divide your troops must be decided by circumstances let your rapidity be that of the wind your compactness that of the forest in raiding and plundering be like fire immovability is like a mountain

Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night and when you move fall like a thunderbolt when you plunder a countryside let the spoil be divided amongst your men when you capture new territory cut it up into allotments for the benefit of the soldiery ponder and deliberate before you make a

Move he will conquer who has learned the artifice of deviation such is the art of maneuvering the book of army management says on the field of battle the spoken word does not carry far enough hence the institution of gongs and drums nor can ordinary objects be seen clearly enough

Hence the institution of banners and flags gongs and drums banners and flags are means whereby the ears and eyes of the host may be focused on one particular point the host thus forming a single united body it is impossible either for the brave to advance alone or for the cowardly to retreat alone

This is the art of handling large masses of men in night fighting then make much use of signal fires and drums and in fighting by day are flags and banners as a means of influencing the ears and eyes of your army the whole army may be robbed of its

Spirit a commander-in-chief may be robbed of his presence of mind now a soldier’s spirit is keenest in the morning by noonday it has begun to flag and in the evening his mind is bent only on returning to camp a clever general therefore avoids an army when the spirit is keen but attacks

It when it is sluggish and inclined to return this is the art of studying moods disciplined and calm to await the appearance of disorder and hubbub amongst the enemy this is the art of retaining self-possession to be near the goal while the enemy is still far from it to wait at ease while

The enemy is toiling and struggling to be well fed while the enemy is famished this is the art of husband england’s strength to refrain from intercepting an enemy whose banners are in perfect order to refrain from attacking an army drawn up in calm and confident array this is the art of studying circumstances

It is a military axiom not to advance uphill against the enemy nor to oppose him when he comes downhill do not pursue an enemy who simulates flight do not attack soldiers whose temper is keen do not swallow bait offered by the enemy do not interfere with an army that is returning home

When you surround an army leave an outlet free do not press a desperate foe too hard such is the art of warfare chapter 8 variation in tactics sun tzu said in war the general receives his commands from the sovereign collects his army and concentrates his forces

When in difficult country do not in camp in country where high roads intersect join hands with your allies do not linger in dangerously isolated positions in hammed in situations you must resort to stratagem in desperate position you must fight there are roads which must not be followed armies which must not be attacked

Towns which must be besieged positions which must not be contested command of the sovereign which must not be obeyed the general who thoroughly understands the advantages that accompany variation of tactics knows how to handle his troops the general who does not understand these may be well acquainted with the

Configuration of the country yet he will not be able to turn his knowledge to practical account so the student of war who is unversed in the art of war of varying his plans even though he be acquainted with the five advantages will fail to make the best use of his men

Hence in the wise leaders plans considerations of advantage and of disadvantage will be blended together if our expectation of advantage be tempered in this way we may succeed in accomplishing the essential part of our schemes if on the other hand in the midst of difficulties we are always ready to

Seize an advantage we may extricate ourselves from misfortune reduce the hostile chiefs by inflicting damage on them and make trouble for them and keep them constantly engaged hold out specious alermans and make them rush to any given point the art of war teaches us to rely not on

The likelihood of the enemies not coming but on our own readiness to receive him not on the chance of his not attacking but rather on the fact that we have made our position unassailable there are five dangerous faults which may affect a general one recklessness which leads to destruction two

Cowardice which leads to capture 3. a hasty temper which can be provoked by insults 4. a delicacy of honor which is sensitive to shame 5. over-solicitude for his men which exposes him to worry and trouble these are the five besetting sins of a general ruiners to the conduct of war

When an army is overthrown and its leader slain the cause will surely be found among these five dangerous faults let them be subject of meditation chapter nine the army on the march sun tzu said we come now to the question of encamping the army and observing signs of the enemy

Pass quickly over mountains and keep in the neighborhood of valleys camp in high places facing the sun do not climb heights in order to fight so much for mountain warfare after crossing a river you should get far away from it when an invading force crosses a river

In its onward march do not advance to meet it midstream it will be best to let half the army get across and then deliver your attack if you are anxious to fight you should not go to meet the invader near a river which he has to cross

More your craft higher up than the enemy and facing the sun do not move upstream to meet the enemy so much for river warfare in crossing salt marshes your sole concern should be to get over them quickly without any delay if forced to fight in a salt marsh you

Should have water and grass near you and get your back to a clump of trees so much for operations in salt marshes in dry level country take up an easily accessible position with rising ground to your right and on your rear so that the danger may be in front and safety lie behind

So much for campaigning in flat country these are four useful branches of military knowledge which enabled the yellow emperor to vanquish four several sovereigns all armies prefer high ground to low and sunny places to dark if you are careful with your men and camp on hard ground the army will be

Free from disease of every kind and this will spell victory when you come to a hill or a bank occupy the sunny side with the slope on your right rear thus you will at once act for the benefit of your soldiers and utilize the natural advantages of the ground

When in consequence of heavy rains up country a river which you wish to afford is swollen and flecked with foam you must wait till it subsides country in which there are precipitous cliffs with torrents running between deep natural hollows confined places tangled thickets quagmires and crevices should be left with all possible speed

And not approached while we keep away from such places we should get the enemy to approach them while we face them we should let the enemy have them on its rear if in the neighborhood of your camp there should be any hidden country ponds surrounded by aquatic grass hollow basins filled

With reeds or woods with thick undergrowth they must be carefully routed out and searched for these are places where men in ambush or insidious spies are likely to be lurking when the enemy is close at hand and remains quiet he is relying on the natural strength of his position

When he keeps aloof and tries to provoke a battle he is anxious for the other side to advance if his place of encampment is easy of access he is tendering a bait movement amongst the trees of a forest shows that the enemy is advancing the appearance of a number of screens in

The midst of thick grass means that the enemy wants to make us suspicious the rising of birds that flight is the sign of an ambuscade startled beast indicate that a sudden attack is coming when there is dust rising in a high column it is the sign of chariots advancing

When the dust is low but spread over a wide area it be tokens the approach of infantry when it branches out in different directions it shows that parties have been sent to collect firewood a few clouds of dust moving to and fro signify that the army is in camping

Humble words and increase preparations are signs that the enemy is about to advance violent language and driving forward as if to attack are signs that he will retreat when the light chariots come out first and take up a position on the wings it is a sign that the enemy is forming for battle

Peace proposals unaccompanied by a sworn covenant indicate a plot when there is much running about and the soldiers fall into rank it means that the critical moment has come when some are seen advancing and some retreating it is allure when the soldiers stand leaning on their spears they are faint from want of

Food if those who are sent to draw water begin by drinking themselves the army is suffering from thirst if the enemy sees an advantage to be gained and makes no effort to secure it the soldiers are exhausted if birds gather on any spot it is unoccupied clamour by night be tokens nervousness

If there is a disturbance in the camp the general’s authority is weak if the banners and flags are shifted about sedition is afoot if the officers are angry it means the men are weary when an army feeds its horses with grain and kills its cattle for food and when

The men do not hang their cookie bots over the campfires showing that they will not return to their tents you may know that they are determined to fight to the death the sign of men whispering together in small knots or speaking in subdued tones points to disaffection amongst the rank and file

Two frequent rewards signify that the enemies at the end of his resources too many punishments betray a condition of dire distress to begin by bluster but afterwards to take fright at the enemy’s numbers shows a supreme lack of intelligence when envoys are sent with compliments in

Their mouths it is a sign that the enemy wishes for a truce if the enemy’s troops march up angrily and remain facing ours for a long time without either joining battle or taking themselves off again the situation is one that demands great vigilance and circumspection if our troops are no more in numbers

Than the enemy that is amply sufficient it only means that no direct attack can be made what we can do is simply to concentrate all our available strength keep a close watch on the enemy and obtain reinforcements he who exercises no forethought but makes light of his opponents is sure to

Be captured by them if soldiers are punished before they have grown attached to you they will not prove submissive and unless submissive then will be practically useless if when soldiers have become attached to you punishments are not enforced they will still be useless therefore soldiers must be treated in

The first instance with humanity but kept under control by means of iron discipline this is a certain road to victory if in training soldiers commands are habitually enforced the army will be well disciplined if not its discipline will be bad if a general shows confidence in his men

But always insists on his orders being obeyed the gain will be mutual chapter 10 terrain sun tzu said we may distinguish six kinds of terrain to with one accessible ground two entangling ground three temporizing ground four narrow passes five precipitous heights six positions at a great distance from the enemy

Ground which can be freely traversed by both sides is called accessible with regard to ground of this nature be before the enemy in occupying the raised and sunny spots and carefully guard your line of supplies then you will be able to fight with advantage ground which can be abandoned but is

Hard to reoccupy is called entangling from a position of this sort if the enemy is unprepared you may sally forth and defeat him but if the enemy is prepared for your coming and you fail to defeat him then return being impossible disasters will ensue when the position is such that neither

Side will gain by making the first move it is called temporizing ground in a position of this sort even though the enemy should offer us an attractive bait it will be advisable not to stir forth but rather to retreat thus enticing the enemy in his turn then when

Part of his army has come out we may deliver our attack with advantage with regard to narrow passes if you can occupy them first let them be strongly garrisoned and await the advent of the enemy should the army forestall you in occupying a pass do not go after him if

The pass is fully garrisoned but only if it is weakly garrisoned with regard to precipitous heights if you are beforehand with your adversary you should occupy the raised and sunny spots and there wait for him to come up if the enemy has occupied them before you do not follow him but retreat and

Try to entice him away if you are situated at a great distance from the enemy and the strength of the two armies is equal it is not easy to provoke a battle and fighting will be to your disadvantage these six other principles connected with earth the general who has attained

A responsible post must be careful to study them now an army is exposed to six several calamities not arising from natural causes but from faults for which the general is responsible these are one flight two insubordination three collapse four ruin five disorganization six route now the conditions are being equal if

One force is hurled against another ten times its size the result will be the flight of the former when the common soldiers are too strong and their officers too weak the result is insubordination when the officers are too strong and the common soldiers too weak the result is collapse

When the higher officers are angry and insubordinate and on meeting the enemy give battle on their own account from a feeling of resentment before the commander-in-chief can tell whether or no he is in a position to fight the result is ruin when the general is weak and without

Authority when his orders are not clear and distinct when there are no fixed duties assigned to officers and men and the ranks are formed in a slovenly haphazard manner the result is utter disorganization when a general unable to estimate the enemy’s strength allows an inferior

Force to engage a larger one or hurls a weak detachment against a powerful one and neglects to place picked soldiers in the front rank the result must be route there are six ways of courting defeat which must be carefully noted by the general who has attained a responsible post

The natural formation of the country is the soldier’s best ally but a power of estimating the adversary of controlling the forces of victory and of shrewdly calculating difficulties dangers and distances constitutes the test of a great general he who knows these things and in fighting puts his knowledge into

Practice will win his battles he who knows them not nor practices them will surely be defeated if fighting is sure to result in victory then you must fight even though the ruler forbid it if fighting will not result in victory then you must not fight even at the ruler’s bidding

The general who advances without coveting fame and retreats without fearing disgrace whose only thought is to protect his country and do good service for his sovereign is the jewel of the kingdom regard your soldiers as your children and they will follow you into the deepest valleys

Look upon them as your own beloved sons and they will stand by you even unto death if however you are indulgent but unable to make your authority felt kind-hearted but unable to enforce your commands and incapable moreover of quelling disorder then your soldiers must be likened to spoil children they are

Useless for any practical purpose if we know that our own men are in a condition to attack but are unaware that the enemy is not open to attack we have gone only halfway towards victory if we know that the enemy is open to attack but are unaware that our own men

Are not in a condition to attack we have only gone halfway towards victory if we know that the enemy is open to attack and also know that our men are in a condition to attack but are unaware that the nature of the ground makes fighting impractical we have still gone

Only halfway towards victory hence the experienced soldier once in motion is never bewildered once he has broken camp he is never at a loss hence the saying if you know the enemy and know yourself your victory will not stand in doubt if you know heaven and no earth you may

Make your victory complete chapter 11 the nine situations sun tzu said the art of war recognizes nine varieties of ground one dispersive ground two facile ground three contentious ground four open ground five ground of intersecting highways six serious ground seven difficult ground eight hemmed in ground nine desperate ground

When a chieftain is fighting in his own territory it is dispersive ground when he has penetrated into hostile territory but to no great distance it is facile ground ground the possession of which imports great advantage to either side is contentious ground ground on which each side has liberty of movement is open ground

Ground which forms the key to three contiguous states so that he who occupies it first has most of the empire at his command is a ground of intersecting highways when an army has penetrated into the heart of a hostile country leaving a number of fortified cities in its rear it is serious ground

Mountain forests rugged steeps marshes and fence all country that is hard to traverse this is difficult ground ground which is reached through narrow gorges and from which we can only retire by tortuous paths so that a small number of the enemy would suffice to crush a large body of our men

This is hemmed in ground ground on which we can only be saved from destruction by fighting without delay is desperate ground on dispersive ground therefore fight not on facile ground halt not on contentious ground attack knot on open ground do not try to block the enemy’s way on the ground of intersecting highways

Join hands with your allies on serious ground gather in plunder in difficult ground keep steadily on the march on hemmed in ground resort to stratagen on desperate ground fight those who are called skillful leaders of old knew how to drive a wedge between the enemies front and rear to prevent

Cooperation between his large and small divisions to hinder the good troops from rescuing the bad the officers from rallying their men when the enemy’s men were united they managed to keep them in disorder when it was to their advantage they made a forward move when otherwise they stop still

If asked how to cope with a great host of the enemy in orderly array and on the point of marching to the attack i should say begin by seizing something which your opponent holds dear then he will be amenable to your will rapidity is the essence of war take

Advantage of the enemy’s unreadiness make your way by unexpected roots and attack unguarded spots the following other principles to be observed by an invading force the further you penetrate into a country the greater will be the solidarity of your troops and thus the defenders will not prevail against you

Make forays infertile country in order to supply your army with food carefully study the well-being of your men and do not overtax them concentrate your energy and horde your strength keep your army continually on the move and devise unfathomable plans throw your soldiers into positions whence there is no escape and they will

Prefer death to flight if they will face death there is nothing they may not achieve officers and men alike will put forward their uttermost strength soldiers when in desperate straits lose the sense of fear if there is no place of refuge they will stand firm if they are in hostile country they will

Show a stubborn front if there is no help for it they will fight hard thus without waiting to be marshaled the soldiers will be constantly on the tv without waiting to be asked they will do your will without restrictions they will be faithful without giving orders they can be trusted

Prohibit the taking of romans and do away with superstitious doubts then until death itself comes no calamity need be feared if our soldiers are not overburdened with money it is not because they have a distaste for riches if their lives are not unduly long it is not because they are disinclined to longevity

On the day they are ordered out to battle your soldiers may weep those sitting up bedewing their garments and those lying down letting the tears run down their cheeks but let them once be brought to bay and they will display the courage of a chew or a cui

The skillful tactician may be likened to the schweijen now the srijan is a snake that is found in the jiung mountains strike at its head and you will be attacked by its tail strike at its tail and you will be attacked by its head strike at his middle and you will be

Attacked by the head and tail both asked if an army can be made to imitate the schweijen i should answer yes for the men of wu and the men of ue are enemies yet if they are crossing a river in the same boat and are caught by a

Storm they will come to each other’s assistance just as the left hand helps the right hence it is not enough to put one’s trust in the tethering horses and the burying of chariot wheels in the ground the principle on which to manage an army is to set up one standard of courage

Which all must reach how to make the best of both strong and weak that is a question involving the proper use of ground thus the skillful general conducts his army just as though he were leading a single man willy-nilly by the hand it is the business of a general to be quiet

And thus ensure secrecy upright and just and thus maintain order he must be able to mystify his officers and men by false reports and appearances and thus keep them in total ignorance by altering his arrangements and changing his plans he keeps the enemy without definite knowledge by shifting his camp and taking

Siquita’s roots he prevents the enemy from anticipating his purpose at the critical moment the leader of an army acts like one who has climbed up a height and then kicks away the ladder behind him he carries his men deep into hostile territory before he shows his hand

He burns his boats and breaks his cooking pots like a shepherd driving a flock of sheep he drives his men this way and that and nothing knows whether he is going to muster his host and bring it into danger this may be termed the business of the general

The different measures suited to the nine varieties of ground the expediency of aggressive or defensive tactics and the fundamental laws of human nature these are things that must most certainly be studied when invading hostile territory the general principle is that penetrating deeply brings cohesion penetrating but a short way means dispersion

When you leave your own country behind and take your army across neighborhood territory you find yourself on critical ground there are means of communication on all four sides the ground is one of intersecting highways when you penetrate deeply into a country it is serious ground when you penetrate but a little way it

Is facile ground when you have your enemy’s strongholds on your rear and narrow passes in front it is hemmed in ground when there is no place of refuge at all it is desperate ground therefore on dispersive ground i would inspire my men with unity of purpose

On facile ground i would see that there is close connection between all parts of my army on contentious ground i would hurry up my rear on open ground i would keep a vigilant eye on my defenses on ground of intersecting highways i would consolidate my alliances

Serious ground i would try to ensure a continuous stream of supplies on difficult ground i would keep pushing on along the road on hemmed in ground i would block any way of retreat on desperate ground i would proclaim to my soldiers the hopelessness of saving their lives

For it is the soldier’s disposition to offer an obstinate resistance when surrounded to fight hard when he cannot help himself and to obey promptly when he has fallen into danger we cannot enter into alliance with the neighboring princes until we are acquainted with their designs

We are not fit to lead an army on the march unless we are familiar with the face of the country its mountains and forests its pitfalls and precipices its marshes and swamps we shall be unable to turn natural advantages to account unless we make use of local guides

To be ignored of any one of the following four or five principles does not befit a war-like prince when a warlike prince attacks a powerful state his generalship shows itself in preventing the concentration of the enemy’s forces he overalls his opponents and their allies are prevented from joining against him

Hence he does not strive to allow himself with all and sundry nor does he foster the power of other states he carries out his own secret designs keeping his antagonists in awe thus he is able to capture their cities and overthrow their kingdoms bestow rewards without regard to rule

Issue orders without regard to previous arrangements and you will be able to handle a whole army as though you had to do it with but a single man confront your soldiers with the deed itself never let them know your design when the outlook is bright bring it

Before their eyes but tell them nothing when the situation is gloomy place your army in deadly peril and it will survive plunge it into desperate straits and it will come off in safety for it is precisely when a force has fallen into harm’s way that it is

Capable of striking a blow for victory success in warfare is gained by carefully accommodating ourselves to the enemy’s purpose by persistently hanging on to the enemy’s flank we shall succeed in the long run in killing the commander-in-chief this is called ability to accomplish a thing by sheer cunning

On the day that you take up your command block the frontier passes destroy the official tallies and stop the passage of all emissaries stone in the council chamber so that you may control the situation if the enemy leaves the door open you must rush in for stall your opponent by seizing what

He holds dear and subtly contrived to time his arrival on the ground walk in the path defined by rule and accommodate yourselves to the enemy until you can fight a decisive battle at first then exhibit the coinness of a maiden until the enemy gives you an opening afterwards emulate the rapidity of a

Running hair and it will be too late for the enemy to oppose you chapter 12 the attack by fire sun tzu said there are five ways of attacking with fire the first is to burn the soldiers in their camp the second is to burn stalls the third is to burn baggage trains the

Fourth is to burn arsenals and magazines the fifth is to hurl dropping fire amongst the enemy in order to carry out an attack we must have means available the material for raising fire should always be kept in readiness there is a proper season for making attacks with fire and special days for

Starting a conflagration the proper season is when the weather is very dry the special days are those when the moon is in the constellations of the sieve the wall the wing or the crossbar for these four are all days of rising wind in attacking with fire one should be

Prepared to meet five possible developments when fire breaks out inside the enemy’s camp respond at once with an attack for without if there is an outbreak of fire but the enemy’s soldiers remain quiet bide your time and do not attack when the force of the flames has reached

Its height follow up with an attack if that is practicable if not stay where you are if it is possible to make an assault with fire from without do not wait for it to break out within but deliver your attack at a favorable moment when you start a fire beat a windward of

It do not attack from the leeward a wind that rises in the daytime lasts long but the night breeze soon falls in every army the five developments connected with fire must be known the movements of the stars calculated and a watch kept for the proper days

Hence those who use fire as an aid to the attack show intelligence those who use water as an aid to the attack gain an accession of strength by means of water an enemy may be intercepted but not robbed of all his belongings unhappy is the fate of one who tries to

Win his battles and succeed in his attacks without cultivating the spirit of enterprise for the result is a waste of time and general stagnation hence the same the enlightened ruler lays his plans well the good general cultivates his resources move not until you see an advantage use not your troops unless there is

Something to be gained fight not unless the position is critical no ruler should put troops into the field merely to gratify his own spleen no general should fight a battle simply out of peak if it is to your advantage make a forward move if not stay where you are

Anger may in time change to gladness vexation may be succeeded by content but a kingdom that has once been destroyed can never come back again into being nor can the dead ever be brought back to life hence the enlightened ruler is heedful and the good general full of caution

This is the way to keep a country at peace and an army intact chapter 13 the use of spies sun tzu said raising a host of a hundred thousand men and marching them great distances entails heavy loss on the people and a drain on the resources of the state

The daily expenditure will amount to a thousand ounces of silver there will be commotion at home and abroad and men will drop down exhausted on the highways as many as seven hundred thousand families will be impeded in their labor hostile armies may face each other for years striving for the victory which is

Decided in a single day this being so to remain in ignorance of the enemy’s condition simply because one grudges the outlay of a hundred ounces of silver in honors and emoluments is the height of inhumanity one who acts thus is no leader of men no present help to his sovereign no

Master of victory thus what enables the wise sovereign and the good general to strike and conquer and achieve things beyond the reach of ordinary men is for knowledge now this foreknowledge cannot be elicited from spirits it cannot be obtained inductively from experience nor by any deductive calculation knowledge of the enemy’s dispositions

Can only be obtained from other men hence the use of spies of whom there are five classes one local spies two inward spies three converted spies four doomed spies five surviving spies when these five kinds of spy are all at work none can discover the secret system this is called divine manipulation of

The threads it is the sovereign’s most precious faculty having local spies means employing the services of the inhabitants of a district having inward spies making use of officials of the enemy having converted spies getting hold of the enemy’s spies and using them for our own purposes having doomed spies doing certain things

Openly for purposes of deception and allowing our spies to know of them and report them to the enemy surviving spies finally are those who bring back news from the enemy’s camp hence it is that which none in the whole army are more intimate relations to be maintained than with spies

None should be more liberally rewarded in no other business should greater secrecy be preserved spies cannot be usefully employed without a certain intuitive sagacity they cannot be properly managed without benevolence and straightforwardness without subtle ingenuity of mind one cannot make certain of the truth of their reports

Be subtle be subtle and use your spies for every kind of business if a secret piece of news is divulged by a spy before the time is ripe he must be put to death together with the man to whom the secret was told whether the object be to crush an army

To storm a city or to assassinate an individual it is always necessary to begin by finding out the names of the attendants the aids decamp and doorkeepers and centers of the general in command our spies must be commissioned to ascertain these the enemy spies who have come to spy on

Us must be sought out tempted with bribes led away and comfortably housed thus they will become converted spies and available for our service it is through the information brought by the converted spy that we are able to acquire and employ local and inward spies it is owing to his information again

That we can cause the doomed spy to carry false tidings to the enemy lastly it is by his information that the surviving spy can be used on appointed occasions the end and aim of spying in all his five varieties is knowledge of the enemy and this knowledge can only be derived

In the first instance from the converted spy hence it is essential that the converted spy be treated with the utmost liberality of old the rise of the yin dynasty was due to ai chi who had served under the hisya likewise the rise of the cho dynasty was due to luya who had served

Under the yin hence it is only the enlightened ruler and the wise general who will use the highest intelligence of the army for purposes of spying and thereby they achieve great results spies are a most important element in water because on them depends an army’s ability to move you

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