11. The Nine Situations

40

To muster his host and bring it into danger:—this may be termed the business of the general.

Sun Tzu means that after mobilization there should be no delay in aiming a blow at the enemy's heart. Note how he returns again and again to this point. Among the warring states of ancient China, desertion was no doubt a much more present fear and serious evil than it is in the armies of today.

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