CC read Sunzi – Chapter 2

It’s the second chapter of the book now and glad that I made it (well good start anyway). I am trying to get the original text online and realised that there are 2 versions… anyway I picked up a Wiki version which hopefully is a most common one. Anyway some T&C in fine letters before you keep reading – below text is just my understanding of the book. In most cases it’s a translation but in some instances it’s shortened or summarised. It still gives good interpretation of  the original text though, I promise! ʕ •ᴥ•ʔ

—— Below are what Chapter 2 is about. Enjoy! ——

Sunzi said: a war involves thousands of horses and vehicles, the daily expense is enormous if we think about transporting ammo and supplies. So the longer the war lasts, the more weapons wear out, and it’s even more frustrating if the army need to take over a town. Long war results in poor country. And when the weapons wear out and soldiers tired, the surrounding  countries/ subsidiaries will take advantage and attack. This will be an issue even a wise man cannot resolve. Hence it’s important to finish a war in a speedy way; no army would try any strategy to prolong the war, and no long-lasting war would do good to any country. For people who don’t understand the harm and risk of war, they cannot get the full benefit of war too.

People who are good at war don’t recruit soldiers or ask for supplies more than twice. It’s because they get initial stuff from the country but then they can get food from the enemy, so there is always sufficient of supplies to them.

The country becomes poor if it needs to do long-distance transportation for war, and the cost will drain out its people. Besides, places close to the army will always try to sell things at higher price, so people in those areas cannot afford their live and hence are exhausted from heavy labour work. All the weapons and horses and ammo for the war use more than half of people’s income and country’s reserve. (Sunzi used more elegant language and I just concluded it roughly… – -::)

So smart leader will try to get resources from enemy. Taking one bowl from enemy equals 20 bowls from internal; taking one feed from enemy equals 20 feeds from internal (considering the costs taken from above factors).

The solider kills enemy from rage. The soldier beats enemy for the goods. When fighting with vehicles, the first one who took over vehicles from the enemy should be awarded. The enemy’s vehicles should be ridden by us with ours and their soldier should be well treated and used by us. This is called getting stronger by winning more.

So the most important thing of a war is to win, not to delay it. The leader who knows the art of war give life to people and controls country’s fate.

Octopus balls say: let’s win in a speedy way.


——  I am the page break for original text ——

孫子曰:凡用兵之法,馳車千駟,革車千乘,帶甲十萬,千里饋糧,則內外之費,賓客之用,膠漆之材,車甲之奉,日費千金,然後十萬之師舉矣。其用戰也貴勝,久則鈍兵挫銳,攻城則力屈,久暴師則國用不足。夫鈍兵挫銳,屈力殫貨,則諸侯乘其弊而起,雖有智者,不能善其後矣。故兵聞拙速,未睹巧之久也。夫兵久而國利者,未之有也。故不盡知用兵之害者,則不能盡知用兵之利也。

善用兵者,役不再籍,糧不三載;取用於國,因糧於敵,故軍食可足也。
國之貧於師者遠輸,遠輸則百姓貧;近於師者貴賣,貴賣則百姓財竭,財竭則急於丘役。力屈財殫,中原內虛於家。百姓之費,十去其七;公家之費,破車罷馬,甲冑矢弩,戟楯蔽櫓,丘牛大車,十去其六。

故智將務食於敵,食敵一鍾,當吾二十鍾;萁稈一石,當吾二十石。
故殺敵者,怒也;取敵之利者,貨也。故車戰,得車十乘以上,賞其先得者,而更其旌旗。車雜而乘之,卒善而養之,是謂勝敵而益強。
故兵貴勝,不貴久。故知兵之將,生民之司命,國家安危之主也。

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