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The Thirty-Six Stratagems by Peter Taylor

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4. Wait at leisure while the enemy labours

It is an advantage to choose the time and place for battle. In this way you know when and where the battle will take place, while your enemy does not. Encourage your enemy to expend his energy in futile quests while you conserve your strength. When he is exhausted and confused, you attack with energy and purpose.

In the Spring and Autumn Period, the King of Ci appointed Bao Shu Ya as the general of his army with instructions to invade the country of Lu. The King of Lu was very frightened when he heard this and took advice from his minister Shih Bo who recommended a certain hermit by the name of Cao Suei as the best person to lead the defence of Lu. It took a lot of effort to persuade both the King ...

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