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Sun Tzu - The Art of War A mysterious Chinese warrior philosopher compiled this book over 2000 years ago It was translated into English by an author named Thomas Cleary who holds a PhD in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University He is the translator of various works in Buddhist Taoist and I Ching studies It is still the most prestigious and influential book today for study by politicians and military strategists everywhere The main theme of this book is to To Win Without Fighting Is Best It gets a large part of its background from the Taoist philosophy Sun-Tzu concentrates on the political side with a set of guidelines on the operational level for the general to follow Where the operational level is concerned Sun-Tzu puts forth many principles on the operational and political level The Art of War spans about 13 chapters taking up less than a hundred pages in its English translation Sun-Tzu is a book of principles and maxims When comparing the relative strengths of the offense and defensive positions Sun-Tzu maintains that the defensive is the stronger position It is easier to hold ground than take it It follows that the defense is easier than the attack assuming both sides have equal means Sun-Tzu also maintains this in his principles of what to attack worst of all is to besiege their city fortifications and For undefeatability defend Its understood that the defender has a greater incentive to fight then an army far from its own borders It also states that the actual war itself must be left in the hands of the military leaders rather then the political leaders As Sun-Tzu comments So a lord may harm the armies in three ways By not knowing the armies affairs yet interfering with the armies policies the armies warriors will be leery Policy of course will not extend its influence to operational details Political considerations do not determine the
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