Page:Sun Tzu on The art of war.djvu/68

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  1. 夫兵久而國利者未之有也
  2. 故不盡知用兵之害者則不能盡知用兵之利也
  3. 善用兵者役不再籍糧不三載
  4. 取用於國因糧於敵故軍食可足也


6. There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare.

The Yü Lan has instead of — evidently the mistake of a scribe.

7. It is only one who is thoroughly acquainted with the evils of war that can thoroughly understand the profitable way of carrying it on.

That is, with rapidity. Only one who knows the disastrous effects of a long war can realise the supreme importance of rapidity in bringing it to a close. Only two commentators seem to favour this interpretation, but it fits well into the logic of the context, whereas the rendering, “He who does not know the evils of war cannot appreciate its benefits,” is distinctly pointless.

8. The skilful soldier does not raise a second levy, neither are his supply-wagons loaded more than twice.

Once war is declared, he will not waste precious time in waiting for reinforcements, nor will he turn his army back for fresh supplies, but crosses the enemy’s frontier without delay. This may seem an audacious policy to recommend, but with all great strategists, from Julius Caesar to Napoleon Buonaparte, the value of time — that is, being a little ahead of your opponent — has counted for more than either numerical superiority or the nicest calculations with regard to commissariat. is used in the sense of . The T‘ung Tien and Yü Lan have the inferior reading . The commentators explain 不三載 by saying that the wagons are loaded once before passing the frontier, and that the army is met by a further consignment of supplies on the homeward march. the Yü Lan, however, reads here as well.

9. Bring war material with you from home, but forage on the enemy. Thus the army will have food enough for its needs.

, “things to be used,” in the widest sense. It includes all the impedimenta of an army, apart from provisions.