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Sun Tzu quotes

(ca. 500 BC)

For them to perceive the advantage of defeating the enemy, they must also have their rewards.


Let your plans be dark and as impenetratable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.


It is imperative to contest all factions for complete victory, so the army is not garrisoned and the profit can be total. This is the law of strategic siege.


Invincibility lies in the defence; the possibility of victory in the Attack.


In the practical art of war, the best thing of all is to take the enemy's country whole and intact; to shatter and destroy it is not so good.


In peace prepare for war, in war prepare for peace. The art of war is of vital importance to the state. It is matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin. Hence under no circumstances can it be neglected.


If you know the enemy and know yourself, your victory will not stand in doubt; if you know Heaven and know Earth, you may make your victory complete.


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.


If ignorant both of your enemy and yourself, you are certain to be in peril.


If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight, even though the ruler forbid it; if fighting will not result is victory, then you must not fight, even at the ruler's bidding.


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