Calthrop 應變第五篇 응변편

THE BOOK OF WAR
THE MILITARY CLASSIC OF THE FAR EAST

TRANSLATED FROM THE CHINESE BY CAPTAIN E. F. CALTHROP, R.F.A. (1908)


V
SUITING THE OCCASION

Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If strong chariots, good horses, strong and valiant soldiers suddenly meet the enemy, and are thrown into confusion, and ranks broken, what should be done?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“In general, the method of fighting is to effect order in daylight by means of flags and banners, pennons and batons; at night by gongs and drums, whistles and flutes. If a signal be made to the left, the troops move to the left; if to the right, they move to the right. Advance is made at the sound of the drum; halt at the sound of the gong; one blast of the whistle is for advance, two for the rally. If those who disobey be cut down, the forces are subject to authority. If officers and soldiers carry out orders, a[Pg 109] superior enemy cannot exist; no position is impregnable in the attack.”

Lord Wen asked and said:—

“What is to be done if the enemy be many and we be few?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“Avoid such an enemy on open ground, and meet him in the narrow way; for, as it is written, if 1 is to stand against 1,000, there is naught better than a pass; if 10 are to hold against 100, there is nothing better than a steep place; if 1,000 are to strike 10,000, there is nothing better than a difficult place. If a small force, with beat of gong and drum, suddenly arise in a narrow way, even a host will be upset. Wherefore it is written: ‘He who has a multitude seeks the plain, and he who has few seeks the narrow way.’”

And Lord Wen asked and said:—

“A mighty host, strong and courageous, which is on the defence with a mountain behind, a precipice between, high ground on the right, and a river on the left, with deep moats, and high walls, and which has[Pg 110] artillery; whose retreat is like the removal of a mountain, advance like the hurricane, and whose supplies are in abundance, is an enemy against whom long defence is difficult. In effect, what should be done in such a case?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“This indeed is a great question, whose issue depends, not upon the might of chariot and horse, but upon the schemes of a wise man.

“Let 1,000 chariots and 10,000 horse, well equipped and with foot-men added to them, be divided into five armies, and a road allotted to each army.

“Then if there be five armies, and each army take a different road, the enemy will be puzzled, and know not in what quarter to be prepared. If the enemy’s defence be strong and united, send envoys quickly to him to discover his intention. If he listen to our advices, he will strike camp and withdraw. But, if he listen not to our advice, but strikes down the messenger, and burns his papers, then divide and attack[Pg 111] from five quarters. If victorious, do not pursue; if defeated, flee to a distance. If feigning retreat, proceed slowly, and, if the enemy approach, strike swiftly.

“One army will hold the enemy in front, with another cut his rear, two more with gags in their mouths[21] will attack his weak point, whether on the right or on the left. If five armies thus make alternate onslaughts, success is certain.

“This is the way to strike strength.”

And Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If the enemy draw near and encompass us, and we would retreat, but there is no way, and in our multitude there is fear, what should be done?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“In such a case, if we be many and they be few, divide and fall upon them; if the enemy be many and we be few, use stratagem and act according to opportunity; and if opportunities be untiringly seized, even if the enemy be many, he will be reduced to subjection.”

[Pg 112]

Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If, in a narrow valley with steep places on either side, the enemy be met, and they are many and we are few, what should be done?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“If they be met among hills, woods, in deep mountains, or wide fens, advance quickly, retire swiftly, and hesitate not. If the enemy be suddenly met among high mountains or deep valleys, be the first to strike the drum and fall upon them. Let bow and cross bow advance; shoot and capture; observe the state of their ranks; and, if there be confusion, do not hesitate to strike.”

Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If the enemy be suddenly met in a narrow place with high mountains on either side, and advance and retreat are alike impossible, what should be done in such a case?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“This is called War in valleys where numbers are of no avail. The ablest officers should be collected, and set against the[Pg 113]enemy. Men light of foot and well armed should be placed in front; the chariots divided; the horsemen drawn up, and placed in ambush on four sides, with many leagues between, and without showing their weapons. Then, the enemy will certainly make his defence firm, and neither advance or retreat. Whereupon, the standards will be raised, and the ranks of banners shown, the mountains left, and camp pitched in the plain.

“The enemy will then be fearful, and should be challenged by chariot and horse, and allowed no rest.

“This is the method of fighting in valleys.”

And Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If the enemy be met in a marsh where the water is out, so that the wheels of the chariots sink in, and the shafts be covered, and the chariots and horsemen overcome by the waters, when there are no boats or oars, and it is impossible either to advance or retreat, what should be done in such a case?”

And Wu answered and said:—

[Pg 114]

“This is called water fighting. Chariots and horsemen cannot be used, and they must be put for a time on one side. Go up to the top of a high place, and look out to the four quarters. Then the state of the waters will certainly be seen; their extent, and the deep places and shallows fully ascertained. Then, by stratagem, the enemy may be defeated.

“If the enemy should cross the waters he should be engaged when half over.”

And Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If there has been long continued rain so that the horses sink, and the chariots cannot move; if the enemy appear from four quarters, and the forces are frightened, what is the course in such a case?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“When wet and overcast, the chariots should halt; when fine and dry, they should arise. Seek height, and avoid low places; drive the strong chariots, and choose well the road on which to advance or halt. If the enemy suddenly arise, immediately pursue them.”

[Pg 115]

Lord Wen asked and said:—

“If our fields and pastures be suddenly pillaged, and our oxen and sheep taken, what should be done?”

And Wu answered and said:—

“Lawless enemies that arise are to be feared; defend well and do not reply. When, at sunset, they seek to withdraw, they will certainly be overladen and fearful. Striving to return quickly to their homes, connection will be lost. Then if they be pursued and attacked, they can be overthrown.”

Wu the Master said:—

“The way of attacking the enemy and investing his castle is as follows:—

“When the outlying buildings have been taken, and the assaulting parties enter the innermost sanctuary, make use of the enemy’s officials, and take charge of their weapons. Let the army on no account fell trees or enter dwellings, cut the crops, slay the six domestic animals, or burn the barns; and show the people that there is no cruel desire. Those who wish to surrender, should be received and freed from anxiety.”

吳子兵法-chn-eng 吳起





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