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The Army's Indications

 

Disciplines > WarfareThe Six Secret Teachings > 3.12 The Army's Indications

Teaching set  | Observed lessons | Discussion | See also

 

Teaching set

Martial Secret Teachings 3.12 (29)

Observed lessons

  • The morale of all armies is a significant factor in deciding the winner of battles and wars.
  • Watch the movements of the enemy for indications of their morale. Those with high morale are more disciplined, more responsive and move faster. Those with low morale appear more anxious or depressed.
  • Spies in the enemy camp can tell you much about their morale.

Discussion

Understanding the morale of all armies involved in a conflict is a very important activity, as this will affect how they respond to provocation and how likely they are to move. The morale of officers is particularly important, though this may well be reflected in the soldiers.

Morale can be detected by provoking them and watching the discipline and alacrity of their response. The same principle can be used in sieges, where the defenders' response can tell much about how energetic they are feeling.

See also

Siege War

 

Sawyer, R.D. (1993). The Seven Military Classics of Ancient China, Basic Books

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