Sun Tzu (AKA Sun Wu and Chang Qing) was a Chinese General in the 6th Century BC. His contribution to war and tactics were immense. He wrote the hugely influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy, The Art of War.
Sun Tzu & The Art of War
All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear 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.
If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, 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. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.
“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.”
It is only the wise general who will use the highest intelligence for the purposes of spying, and thereby they achieve great results.
– Su Tzu
Hold out baits to entice the enemy. Feign disorder, and crush him.
– Sun Tzu
”Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”
“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.”
Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.
What is essential in war is victory, not prolonged operations.