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 Post subject: Sun Tzu or Machiavelli?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 5:08 pm 
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Hey,both names are awkard to pronounce :P , but whose "Art of War" is better? I wanted to look at them both, and I am more familiar with Machiavelli. Any reccomendations?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2006 7:22 pm 
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They both have famous quotes, but there is no question the best book on this subject is "On War", by Carl von Clausewitz. Be careful which edition you buy. Some have large sections editted out.

It was Clausewitz who said: "War is an extension of policy by other means." ( Quote is from another of his writings, but the sense is in "On War". )

Clausewitz was a soldier, a middle'rank officer, but he was a very deep-thinking academic. He died in his early thirties around 1830.
Many later authors have tried to equal him but failed. He got to the very heart of the subject.

While the subject is war, Clausewitz is really writing about life. All life is a war against something. Poverty, social climibng , you name it, every endeavor is a competitiive endeavor, and while most of us don't kill our competitors, we try to beat them somehow. We have to, or we get nothing.

Clausewitz had to mention strategy and tactics and all that, but what he was really examining was human nature. Otherwise, his book would have been forgotten. Anybody can write about strategy and tactics.

Difficult reading, but more edifying than the one dimensional works mentioned. Really, now, would you want to live in a world of those two other authors who only wanted power for themselves? Clausewitz was interested in his country's survival and the restoration pf peace.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 11:06 am 
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Thank You! :mrgreen: I'll be sure to check him out! :wink:
Jess

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