Roots of Strategy. Book 1 by Thomas R. Phillips
By Thomas R. Phillips
Writings of sunlight Tzu, Vegetius, Marshal Maurice de Saxe, Frederick the good, and Napoleon.
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Extra resources for Roots of Strategy. Book 1
How victory may be produced for them out of the enemy's own tactics—that is what the multitude cannot comprehend. All men can see these tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved. Do not repeat the tactics which have gained you one victory, but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances. Military tactics are like unto water; for water in its natural course runs away from high places and hastens downwards. So in war, the way to avoid what is strong is to strike what is weak.
Maneuvering with an army is advantageous; with an undisciplined multitude, most dangerous. If you set a fully equipped army in march in order to snatch an advantage, the chances are that you will be too late. On the other hand, to detach a flying column for the purpose involves the sacrifice of its baggage and stores. MANEUVERING. •Water, fire, wood, metal, earth. 37 Roots of Strategy Thus if you order your men to roll up their buff-coats, and make forced marches without halting day or night, covering double the usual distance at a stretch, doing a hundred li in order to wrest an advantage, the leaders of your three divisions will fall into the hands of the enemy.
THE ARMY ON THE MARCH. 42 Sun Tzu Moor your craft higher up than the enemy and facing the sun. Do not move upstream to meet the enemy. So much for river warfare. In crossing salt-marshes, your sole concern should be to get over them quickly, without any delay. If forced to fight in a salt-marsh, you should have the water and grass near you, and get your back to a clump of trees. So much for operations in salt-marshes. In dry, level country, take up an easily accessible position with rising ground to your right and on your rear, so that the danger may be in front, and safety lie behind.