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Sun-Tzu The Art of Warfare
by Mark McNeilly
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"When the strike of a hawk breaks the body of its prey, it is because of timing." So wrote the Chinese strategist Sun Tzu more than two millennia ago in the text that has come to be known as The Art of War, one that guides military planners to this day. Former infantry officer Mark McNeilly examines the lessons of Sun Tzu's book not metaphorically, as he did for the boardroom in his Sun Tzu and the Art of Business, but literally, considering its dicta on such matters as the necessity of speedy action and solid leadership in the light of real battles and campaigns throughout history--and those yet to be fought. For instance, McNeilly looks at the Allied victory over Iraq in the light of Sun Tzu's pronouncement, "Just as flowing water avoids the heights and hastens to the lowlands, so an army avoids strength and strikes weakness." Matching intelligent commentary with a complete text of Sun Tzu's classic, McNeilly's book is of much interest to students of military history and current events alike. --Gregory McNamee
From Library Journal
Sun Tzu's The Art of War is an acknowledged classic of military theory that has been used as a reference by the profession of arms for centuries. A marketing strategist for IBM, former infantry officer, and author of Sun Tzu and the Art of Business, McNeilly has updated an admittedly difficult text by annotating it with examples drawn from military experiences (mainly Civil War and World War II vignettes) familiar to Americans. The book includes the full text of the popular translation by Samuel B. Griffith. Much of the added commentary favorably compares Sun Tzu's approach to that of Carl von Clausewitz, the German writer whose On War has dominated much of Western military thinking for two centuries. McNeilly's vignettes are often strained, stretching the interpretation of events to make them fit the maxims, but the result may be to make a classic somewhat more accessible to a modern audience not steeped in military traditions. Recommended where demand exists. Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army Combined Arms Research Lib., Fort Leavenworth, KS
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"At first I thought it was just common sense, but if you pay attention to what he's saying, here's a guy, a Chinese general, wrote this thing 2,400 years ago, most of it still applies today."--Tony Soprano, from The Sopranos
Long acknowledged as a classic text on strategy, Sun Tzu's The Art of War has been admired by leaders as diverse as Mao Zedong and General Norman Schwartzkopf. However, written two thousand years ago, the book can be somewhat daunting to the modern reader. Now Mark McNeilly, author of Sun Tzu and the Art of Business, which made Sun Tzu accessible to the business executive, has extracted the six concepts most applicable to modern warfare, making them easy to understand and apply to military situations. Drawing on a wealth of fascinating historical examples, McNeilly shows how these six principles might be used in wars of the future-both conventional wars and terrorist conflicts-and how they can provide insight into current affairs, such as the war on terrorism and China's increasingly important strategic and military role in the world. In the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, McNeilly has written a new chapter for this paperback edition, which addresses how Sun Tzu's ideas can be applied to the war on terrorism. He also describes how to win the information war, how to lead by example, and how to use alliances to defeat the opponent. Including the full text of The Art of War in the popular translation by Samuel Griffith, with cross-references to quotations used in the book, Sun Tzu and the Art of Modern Warfare unlocks these elusive secrets for anyone interested in strategy and warfare, whether they are professional soldiers, military history buffs, or business executives.
About the Author
Mark McNeilly is a former U.S. Army infantry captain and graduate of the 101st Airborne "Screaming Eagles" Helicopter Assault School. The author of Sun Tzu and the Art of Business: Six Strategic Principles for Managers, he is a Strategist for a Fortune 100 company. He lives in Apex, North Carolina.
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