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The Annotated Art of War (Parts 13.26-27: Conclusion)

 

Disciplines > Warfare > The Annotated Art of War > Parts 13.26-27: Conclusion

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XIII. The Use of Spies

 

Sun Tzu said: Commentary
26. Of old, the rise of the Yin dynasty was due to I Chih who had served under the Hsia. Likewise, the rise of the Chou dynasty was due to Lu Ya who had served under the Yin.

There you go. Let's end with a bit of history.

What it does say is that wisdom is rare, and if it is passed on, then whole dynasties will survive.

When wisdom is lost, then dynasties fall and it may take many years and much hardship for the wisdom to be re-gained.

It is a part of the foolishness of youth that the wisdom of their elders is not recognized.

27. 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. There is always a question as to what you do with your best people. Do you put them on the front line where they will have the greatest immediate effect? Or do you you them subtly and with care? Or even in training others to be more effective?

As spying is the most powerful of tools, then it makes sense that you put the best people you have into this.

 

 

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