Brian Browne Walker’s beloved translations of the I Ching, Tao te Ching, and Hua hu Ching are published by Harper and St. Martin’s Press and translated into over a dozen languages around the world. This new rendition of “The Art of War” brings his clear voice to the world’s most time-honored teachings on leadership, strategy, and conflict. The book includes a provocative and powerful commentary on Barack Obama and our time that reminds America and the world of our most pressing moral responsibilities, touches on the perils of modern demagogues, and looks forward with a sense of both gravity and light.
of war is not the glory
of campaigning, but victory.
Soldiers long from home lose heart.
Weapons long at war lose their edge.
Laying siege to cities exhausts both, and more:
at home, a nation’s heart is exhausted by the
conscription of its sons and daughters,
the pockets of the people are emptied
by the levying of taxes, and the
resources of the land are
depleted by sending
drained like this
is weak at home and weak
in the field, and risks becoming
easy prey for ambitious chieftains.
The wise leader knows that even an army
staked and nourished at home drives prices up
and impoverishes the people. Greater still is
the scarcity born of waging long wars
at great distances. No nation
has ever benefitted
no good leader
repeatedly raids the families
of his citizens for soldiers, nor their
purses for the gold to
buy weapons, nor
their peace to
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