If someone is victorious in battle and succeeds in attack but does not exploit the achievement, it is disastrous. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 12
There is nothing more difficult than military combat. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 7
One who excels at sending forth the unorthodox [army] is as inexhaustible as heaven. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 5
Happy New Year!
After all the stupidity, all the lies, all the inflated body counts, all the unnecessary deaths, in spite of it all, by 1968 an American victory in Vietnam was within easy grasp. Even Westmoreland could have managed it.
Speaking of peace, Merry Christmas!
As noted last week, some aspects of the domino theory were correct. Following the defeat of the Nationalists in China, South Korea would certainly have become Communist absent US intervention. The same can be said for South Vietnam, although in that case the Communist takeover was only delayed (albeit by two decades).
No country ever profited from protracted warfare. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 2
The art of war teaches us to rely not on the likelihood of the enemy not coming, but on our readiness to receive him. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 8
War is the greatest affair of state, the basis of life and death, the way to survival or extinction. Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter 1
Let’s begin our exploration of the art of peace by applying the lessons of The Art of War to America’s many – and mostly disastrous – proxy wars since World War II. Maybe we can identify ideas that will help make future proxy wars – given that they seem to be unavoidable – less ruinous.
One reason why people haven’t bothered to write “the art of peace,” at least in recent decades, might be because, well, who needs it? Why attack the problem of peace intellectually when we’ve already – very successfully – achieved peace by simply muddling through?