The 33 Strategies of War

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The 33 Strategies of War
The 33 Strategies of War

Author Country Language Genre(s) Publisher

Robert Greene (author) United States English Business, Management, Military History, Psychology, self-improvement Penguin Group (HC); HighBridge Audio (CD)

Publication date January and April 2006 Media type Pages ISBN Print (Hardcover) and CD 496 ISBN 0-670-03457-6 (HC); 978-1-59887-091-6 (CD)

The 33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene is a "guide to the subtle social game of everyday life informed by the ... military principles in war.". [1] It is composed of discussions and examples on offensive and defensive strategies from a wide variety of people and conditions such as Napoleon Bonaparte, Lawrence of Arabia, Alexander the Great, and the Tet Offensive.[2] The scope of the book is broad, applying not only to violent conflicts but also social conflicts such as family quarrels and business negotiations. The book is divided into five parts: Self-Directed Warfare, Organizational (Team) Warfare, Defensive Warfare, Offensive Warfare and Unconventional (Dirty) Warfare. [1] Each part contains a differing number of strategies, each in a chapter. Each chapter has a similar layout. Descriptions of battles, political and business situations are accompanied by Greene's interpretation. There are occasional instructional sections followed by examples. All chapters end with a "Reversal" to give a brief discussion of where the strategy may not apply, a contrary view or defense. Throughout the book Mr. Greene includes quotes from a variety of sources. These are incorporated in the margins and between sections. Although one reviewer has called the book "an indispensable book, [which] provides all the psychological ammunition you need to overcome patterns of failure and forever gain the upper hand,"[3] another one found it "perplexing — if not downright unhealthy — [to publish] a book on the lessons of war for everything but war at a time when we [Canada] are, er, at war."[4] Yet another reviewer found the book's coverage of military history informative, but the political tales "mostly foolish or just plain wrong".[5] On Amazon.com, the majority of the reviews on the book are positive. The 33 Strategies of War was part of the reading list for youths attending the Indigenous Leadership Forum organised by the University of Victoria, which aimed to redesign radical Indigenous politics and the Indigenist movement.[6] It is also read by students attending a Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary course in Christian apologetics.[7]

maintain your focus. has expanded many of the themes from this Synopses of the Strategies Part 1: Self-Directed Warfare Reversal Identify and fight your opponents. Use your opponents to distract attention from you. • Keys to Warfare • • Define your opponent. Do Not Lose Your Presence of Mind: The Counterbalance Strategy. • The Last War. [8] 2 . • Keys to Warfare • • Drop preconceived notions. Adapt to current times. • • Re-examine beliefs and principles. • Hyper-Aggressive Tactic. • • If in doubt. In 1605 Miyamoto Musashi. keep tactics fresh and always develop new ones. With this in place. but his strategies were those of Frederick the Great and were old and tired. They had to identify the opponent. Keep inventing new plans. Margaret Thatcher. defined her fight and her opponent. 1) Declare War on Your Enemies: The Polarity Strategy. intimidate them and raise their paranoia to allow them to intimidate themselves. test to ensure he is your opponent. His confidence and leadership defeated the Danish navy. Hired to fight the Persians in 401 BC. . strive toward that goal relentlessly. do not fight the last war. define your goals and have the confidence to achieve those goals. but would regularly change his tactics to confound and confuse his opponents. Lord Nelson in the 1801 battle at Copenhagen disobeyed orders from a self-concern superior (Sir Hyde Parker). Greene identifies: • The Inner Enemy. driving her tasks to completion. • The Outer Enemy. Napoleon's innovative strategies outwitted him.The 33 Strategies of War His blog Power. • The Present War. Xenophon had to turn a mercenary band of Greeks into a unified group fighting for self-preservation. but when you have won act conciliatory. In 1806 Prince Friedrich Ludwig of Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen fought Napoleon. 3) Amidst the Turmoil of Events. learn from it. determine the reasons for their fight and battle their own issues. 2) Do Not Fight the Last War: The Guerrilla-War-of-the-Mind Strategy. Reversal The only reversal is to use this against others. His continual adaptation of his tactics afforded his opponents no comfort. Reversal No complete reversal. She fought relentlessly for what she felt was right by not backing down in the face of opposition. Reverse course doing the opposite of what has been done before. a samurai. • • Forget the last war. Having opponents implies your importance.[1] You must stay focused. Seduction and War: The Robert Greene Blog book--which he commonly refers to as the WAR book. had series of defining duels.[1] Tactics age.[1] To fight you must know and identify your opponents. He developed a pattern for his fighting.

Ensure you get rapid information from the trenches. in positions of extreme authority knowing the situation would be run according to his beliefs and style. hence losing the battle. gave him a calm demeanor on the set. do not seek comfort. use them to your advantage. His methodical approach. This created the ability for him to know and trust the actions of his subordinates. Part 2: Organizational (Team) Warfare Reversal It is never good to give up authority. like Dwight Eisenhower.[1] Take command and control. This resulted in lack of understanding of the tactical objectives of securing Tekke Tepe. They had to fight the Aztecs even though grossly out numbered. people fight harder. Rely only on yourself. Act as if it is you against the world. In early World War I (1915) the British attacked Constantinople attempting to open access to the Black Sea to supply Russia and to facilitate attacking the Germans from the East. The intimate experience with his mortality allowed him to rise above life's trivialities. this strategy will work for them. Eventually allowing him to place generals. do not hide from it.[1] When there are no other options. But General Ian Hamilton led his command by delegating details to subordinates. Do not panic. • Remote Control. Fyodor Dostoevsky's near execution fortified his resolve to make each work as if it were his last. He knew the look and feel that he wanted to achieve. Look at your opponents that are allied and determine ways to split them based on the weaknesses in their alliance. • Death at Your Heels. In 1504 Hernán Cortés used this tactic as he removed the ability of his 500 men to return to Cuba. Stay restless. Film director Alfred Hitchcock always had a complete understanding and plan for his movies. • Be wary of the politically inclined in your midst. Maintain presence of mind. • . Do not be too authoritarian and not too weak • The Broken Chain. 4) Create a Sense of Urgency and Desperation: The Death-Ground Strategy. act sooner. focus on what you are confident in. Develop a quick reaction sense. • • Do not wait to be ready. do not let yourself be intimidated by yourself or others. • • • Seek out the conflict. though confusing to others. • Keys to Warfare • • • Do not get frustrated by people less strategic or foolish. rely on them but do not become captive to them. minimize reliance on others. If the choice is life or death they have nothing to lose. Divided leadership is dangerous.The 33 Strategies of War • Detached Buddha Tactic. 3 Reversal Be aware that when you are the aggressor and your opponent has nothing to lose. • Look for people to fill your voids of knowledge. Throughout his career General George Marshall established a set of protégés carefully teaching them his philosophy of command. • No Return Tactic. make decisions. • Keys to Warfare • • Take the one and only chance approach. 5) Avoid The Snare of Groupthink: The Command-and-Control Strategy. • Keys to Warfare • • Create a chain of command.

but let the team know they exist. bait them to fight the expensive fight. Against her advisors she waited and did not engage Philip II of Spain. Know your strengths and play to them. Respect your troops. Hannibal provided competitive war games for his troops to show them the lengths that people would go to join their army. avoid idleness. He recruited like minded individuals and commanded a formidable unit.[1] Smaller units are more agile. The former divided his troops and supplied them with specific instructions. especially when change of tactics is required. In 58 bce Julius Caesar actually arrested his rumormongers. 1. Queen Elizabeth I of England ascended to the throne in 1558. 5. 2. • Keys to Warfare • Keep yourself in a position of force (Sun Tzu's Shih) • Instill the philosophy of following commands "in spirit" not "by the letter" • Create enmity in the troops so that when they are apart they follow the same philosophy Reversal Morale spreads. 6) reward and punish sparingly. Instead she looked for . the team may need to be tighten. brought together to become one again. but so does discontent. 8) Pick Your Battles: The Perfect Economy Strategy. At the first sign of discontent quell it.The 33 Strategies of War 4 Reversal At times. financially and morally. who had little British military background. 1950: North American football's Green Bay Packers hired Vince Lombardi who treated all players equally and made them all earn respect and praise. Try to spend your opponent's assets. The final war. 5) feed the emotions to feed the cause. 2) provide for the team. • Strengths and Weaknesses. 1630: Oliver Cromwell. 4. Surrounding the Austrian troops who surrendered at the Battle of Ulm with little fighting.[1] Fight economically. He used the fear of public reprimand to keep team members in line. Be a leader 1) fight for a cause. 4) focus the team's energy. He was drawn into a series of battles by his ego and guided by inadequate intelligence. mobile and deft. the Pyrrhic War. draw them into the battle. • Calculated Disorder. but it is usually not worth the risk. joined the military to lead a crusade of the Puritans. often visiting troops or wounded so they would see his energy and build their morale. In 280 BC Pyrrhus of Epirus acted as a mercenary to the city of Tarentum about to go to war with Rome. 1796: Napoleon energized his troops with the "Spirit of the Republic" for their battles. but his army was decimated. Part 3: Defensive Warfare Reversal One can win an expensive battle. 7) build team history and use it to bond. ruined him forever and was the genesis of the term "pyrrhic victory". 3) lead by example. • The Art of Man Management. • Historical Examples. at that time a secondary military power. conserving all your assets. He won the battles. 281 BC: Building spirit for the upcoming fight. 7) Transform Your War into a Crusade: Morale Strategies. 6) Segment Your Forces: The Controlled-Chaos Strategy. 8) remove the disaffected. 3. Johnson kept his teams working hard by keeping praise illusive and fostering competition to get that praise. In 1805 Napoleon was being attacked by the Austrian troops under Karl Mack. War consists of weakening the other side—militarily. • Spiral Effect.[1] Create an atmosphere of fighting for something noble—a cause or a need. 1931: Lyndon B.

nasty and non-negotiable. 2) be a threat. Stop before it gets worse. 5 • • • Reversal There are times when one needs to strike first. Use deception where you do not have the economic means to expand.[1] Moving first shows your opponent your strategy. • • Remove your emotions. Prior to the Battle of Austerlitz (1805). This helped maintain a peaceful alliance. the Republican Party. • Keys to Warfare • • History shows that defenders usually win the war. draw them to make the first move. FDR delivered a satirical speech defending his dog. 2. FDR waited and did not respond until they made comments on his dog. 10) Create a Threatening Presence: Deterrence Strategies. Without action you will condition people to ignore you. 3) move irrationally. • . Napoleon drew the opposing forces forward to expose their weak center and defeat them. Do not proceed only out of pride. You need to take action on occasion. imply aggression. irritating and frustrating your opponent. In 1874 Louis XI of France used Duke of Milan's ambassador to France. Napoleon played scared and panicky. act crazy. Reversal Risk is inherent in making yourself look foolish and threatening. His efforts eventual brought him recognition (from King Edward III). create unpredictability. humiliating Dewey. bluff if needed. Robert the Bruce made great strides with a ragtag army against the British armies and King Edward II. but try to draw your opponent into the first strike. made continual slanderous remarks about Franklin Roosevelt (FDR). Most of the gains by Robert the Bruce were through bold raids. mean. • Balance your ends to your means. Fala. • Reverse Intimidation. 4) Feed your opponent's paranoia by indicating capabilities that they are afraid of. In the 13th century. rely on your knowledge. anxious for revenge. Wait. In the 1944 Democratic Presidential election. trying to elect Thomas Dewey. 9) Turn the Tables: The Counterattack Strategy. People want an easy victory and will not attack if they think they will lose. Queen Elizabeth I carefully picked her battles to conserve resources and slowly decimate a superior force. • Jujitsu. • Deterrence and Reverse Intimidation in Practice 1. Christopher Bollate. Deceive your opponent into attacking. decided to lead the allies into battle. 1) Make bold maneuvers and bluff wisely. Attempt to draw your opponent into battle by their anger. she enlisted the Royal Navy to run pirate raids on his ships returning from the New World and using other less conventional techniques to destroy the Spanish Armada. • Keys to Warfare • Make do with what you have. make sudden moves. • Disguise Aggression. • Do not rely on technology and equipment.The 33 Strategies of War more subtle ways of damaging him. 5) maintain a bad reputation. 1862 in the American Civil War Stonewall Jackson acted strong and played to George McClellan's weak points focusing on his anxiety and timid nature.[1] Make people think they will lose. 3. Know your limits. • • Turn the aggressor's anger against them. If this does not work re-assess your options for an offensive approach. on your terms. Keep calm. . to carry fabricated rumors about France's suspicions of the Duke's intentions. Analyze their strategy and counterattack based on the weaknesses they reveal. Leverage your assets. Do not get over extended. swift incursions and combination of offensive and defensive actions. Czar Alexander I of Russia. threatening attack and irrational actions.

do not expose your strategy. Although having to retreat from their gains. 12) Lose The Battles But Win The War: Grand Strategy. • Keys to Warfare • • Look past what appears to be the threat and find the source and attack it. It was quite successful. will aggravate your opponent and increase the chance of them making an irrational move. Make your actions hard to follow. • • Frustrate the opponent by refusing to fight. Chiang Kai-shek's nationalist party forced Mao Tse-tung's communists to retreat in the early stages of the Chinese Civil War. • • Look beyond the opponent's horizon. John Boyd was assigned to work in The Pentagon to design a new fighter and found the politics difficult. Draw out supply and communication lines of opponent. • Keys to Warfare • • Retreat to solidify troops and support. This action had the effect of strengthening support for the Communists by uniting and galvanizing the peasants. He first gained the ground he needed (territorially and emotionally) but did not increase his holdings to a point that they could not be governed. for instance devising plans to capture the major Mediterranean ports. when they know you can. He did not fight battles he could not win. Part 4: Offensive Warfare Reversal Having a grand strategy can result in success that creates 1) too many options and resulting indecision. unless your goal is martyrdom. • Retreat to Advance. In 1949 the communists defeated the nationalists. effectively nullifying the Persian navy. • Great Campaign. • Total Warfare . Create condition for increased error on the opponent's side. .[1] Retreat will gain the advantage of thinning your opponent's forces and lengthening their supply and communication lines allowing your forces to concentrate. the offensive was designed confuse the US and South Vietnamese armies and to play to the US media. Have purpose and goal. Alexander the Great developed a new strategy of looking far forward. 6 Reversal Retreat is not an end. He used a strategy of playing dumb. In 1968 during the Vietnam War Vo Nguyen Giap executed a country-wide offensive on the Tet holiday. Not fighting.The 33 Strategies of War 4. Your plan must include an attack. Fighting for martyrdom has a grander cause you will never see. 11) Trade Space for Time: The Nonenagement Strategy. looking far into the future.[1] Have a bigger plan. and 2) a "drunkenness" on success and reckless behavior. differentiating him from other leaders. but heavily researching issues purposed by others and plotting tactics to kill the initiatives.

Metternich used this and other knowledge to the advantage of Austria allowing them to build an army and join a greater alliance in Europe eventually leading to the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo. 3. like ships at sea. spread false information to lead other's astray.[1] Be in control.[1] Know your opponent's moves and do not let your motives be known. fight on your territory where you are comfortable. deposing the current leader Dost Mohammad Khan. Often he rode with the front line of attack in order to shorten the information chain. • • Hide your observations. not quantity. look for your opponent's weakness and draw them into it. Control your opponent's mind. Erwin Rommel used smaller units on the North Africa deserts to strike the British. you must have control. Mae West slowly made moves to change the dynamic of power into her court. The result was his death and the return of Dost Mohammad to power. Submerge yourself in their mind. 2. • • Learn to read people.The 33 Strategies of War 7 Reversal You must be formless and difficult to read. • The Art Of Ultimate Control. In 1218 Genghis Khan attacked and defeated the more powerful Muhammad II of Khwarezm starting with a series of small deliberate attacks that looked like losses.[1] Slow methodical start with a well-planned attack. But Auckland did not understand the Afghan people or their culture. although you may not want to show it. Between 1806 and 1813 Prince Metternich met with Napoleon in hopes of understanding him and finding points of weakness that he could exploit. deceive your opponent to make them think they are in control. • Slow-slow-quick-quick. • Close Embrace. • Keys to Warfare • • Gather knowledge of your opponent. Eventually she took over significant portions of the films writing. • Must have superior coordination. Reversal Slow erratic start that is non-predictive. Be assertive. • Quick orders through light chains of command. In 1942 during World War II. speed is imperative. He continued the tactics against . In 1838 the British invasion Afghanistan (led by Lord Auckland) was to reinstate western friendly Shuja Shah Durrani. • Historical Examples 1. Virginia. Eventually he assisted in orchestrating Napoleon's marriage to Marie Louise. Strive for quality of information. Be aware of internal spies and disarm them. move fast and sure. Reversal There is no reversal. During the American Civil War. 13) Know Your Enemy: The Intelligence Strategy. Move them into your territory. • The Mirrored Enemy. reducing the ability to attack them. While working on the Paramount Pictures film Night After Night. in 1932. learn them. He kept the units moving continuously. 14) Overwhelm Resistance With Speed and Suddenness: The Blitzkrieg Strategy. Make the first move. He then made more serious and speedy attacks to defeat Muhammad II. 15) Control the Dynamic: Forcing Strategies. making numerous mistakes. General Sherman faced off with General Johnston in battles over Richmond. He played to Johnston's paranoia and his overall defensive nature. • Keys to Warfare • Small units provide mobility. Understand their way of thinking.

media. Capture and destroy it. be it the command center. 16) Hit Them Where it Hurts: The Center of Gravity Strategy. • Divide groups and they are easier to conquer. until the enactment of the Stamp Act by the British. Hannibal's main supply point and the Carthagian capital in Spain. Historically people have banded together to defend themselves. belief system. The Greeks traveled north blocking the pass between the two areas. He would gain control through various means including hypnosis. Adams rallied people to revolt. capturing it in 203 BC recalling Hannibal from Italy and removing his threat. 17) Defeat Them in Detail: The Divide and Conquer Strategy. The slave Frederick Douglass. Psychiatrist Milton H. Erickson used. deception and reversal. everyone regardless of structure has a center of gravity. Samuel Adams was continually fighting for the free representation for the colonies. 4. After many battles. This crippled Hannibal's supply routes. originally owned by Captain Thomas Auld.[1] Look at the parts and determine how to control the individual parts. • • Surprise and splinter the group attacking the pieces. was sent to be "broken" by Edward Covey. Douglass became openly defiant to Covey. .[1] Attack the central point. • Attacking the Joints. Leading up to the American Revolution. fearing death and having nothing to lose Douglass fought Covey and achieved victory simply by creating a situation where Covey would lose his reputation as a slave breaker. In 1765 Adams was able to rally the colonists around the point of "No taxation without representation". • Pillars of Collapse. create dissension and leverage it. In 209 BC Publius Scipio attacked and captured New Carthage. Then with the Tea Act. hypnotherapy among other techniques. deny them this comfort. In 490 BC the Persians planned an attack on ancient Athens they landed 24 miles north on Athens on the plains of Marathon. The Greeks attacked the troops in what is known as Battle of Marathon and then ran back to Athens to prevent the Persians from disembarking (hence the running event). Reversal Dividing your team can generate a deft and mobile force. The Persians split their troops at night and attempted an attack Athens directly by sea. Occasionally his patients would not cooperate with his therapy. dumping tea into the Boston Harbor. 8 Reversal No reversal. in 1773. • Central Position. For the most part he struggled. Georgia and took the city in a surprise move. to help his patients.The 33 Strategies of War General Hood in Atlanta. • Keys to Warfare • Find the center point of your opponent and attack it—be it communication. Scipio continued on to Carthage in 204 BC. • Keys to Warfare • Romans divided the power base of their captured areas so that no one area had the power to attack. supply lines. 5. supply lines.

can give you too many options and can paralyze your advance. 20) Maneuver Them Into Weakness: The Ripening For the Sickle Strategy. In the Battle of Isandlwana the Zulu used their knowledge of the land to surround. though. 18) Expose and Attack Your Enemy's Soft Flank: The Turning Strategy. Although there were many times when he enlisted the direct method.The 33 Strategies of War 9 Reversal Occupying the opponent's position can reverse on you by making you look too much like them. surprise and rout the British. Countess di Castiglione) to influence Napoleon III of France (note: the book says Napoleon II. Maneuvering.[1] Continue calculated moves in your position. Much of his work was done by showing Pompey's men his kindness and honest treatment of his troops.[1] Maintain constant pressure on your opponent to defeat their will power. • Occupying the Flank. Without 100% success you are left open to reprisal. This will enable you to control the situation and bewilder and exhaust your opponent. Notably were the power struggles with Pompey. Rockefeller used this tactic continually to "surround" potential competition by buying land and infrastructure they needed to compete with him. • Turning the Flank. • Make plans with slight irrationality to puzzle your opponent. • Make plans that give you room to maneuver. In 1778 the British in Natal wanted to absorb the Zulu territories. but this is in error) to place him as the King of Italy) • Use charm and flattery to lure you opponent to drop guard • Show your opponent's bad traits (Hernán Cortés' appointment of a treasurer to collect Velázquez's taxes) Reversal No reversal. • Reversal There is no advantage of a direct attack. • Create the feeling of being surrounded by creating attacks from nowhere. there are many cases where he fought indirectly. • Horns of the Beast. get your opponent to extend his ranks and in the distraction have your forces attack his exposed flank or rear. This worked to get many of his opponent's troops to surrender. Julius Caesar perfected the art of indirect fighting. exposing his flank and allowing Napoleon to surround and defeat him. In 1796 Baron Joseph Alvinczy attempting to dispel the French from Verona was drawn forward by Napoleon in the Battle of Arcola. Use what you have in abundance. • Examples . losing differentiating factors. • Keys to Warfare • Indirection is the key to modern day business battles (Victor Emmanuel II of Italy used the Virginia Oldoini. • Make plans that keep your opponent in check and always on a new defensive. • Maneuver Warfare . John D. 19) Envelop The Enemy: The Annihilation Strategy. • Create flexible plans with many options.[1] Bait for a frontal attack. • Keys to Warfare • The psychology of enclosure is strong.

Lawrence. • Jade for Tile. used a small army to move quickly through the desert and antagonize the Turks. Tsukahara Bokuden. • • Negotiation gives your opponent time to regroup. 10 Reversal Moving too far or being too aggressive came embitter your opponent and others creating animosity and prolonged resentment leading to retribution. • Keys to Warfare • • Be amiable. . Philip II of Macedonia came to power in 359 BC. Bokuden pushed the boat away from the shore. T. 5. Bokuden practiced Mutekatsu-ryu and moved the challenge to an island. Maintain pressure and advance to give your opponent reason to conclude. Eventually he formed the League of Corinth (Note: The book refers to this as Hellenic League which appeared 100 years earlier) to ally many Greek city-states to attack the Persians. At the onset of the Greek War of Independence (1821) the Russia's Greek born foreign minister Capo d'Istria felt it imperative that Russia support Greece. Landon tried to defeat Roosevelt by supporting the New Deal but criticizing the creator (FDR). 3. As his challenger stepped from the boat. Wary of the desire of Austria's Prince Metternich to keep Russia from these ports. This would give Russia access to warm water ports in the Mediterranean. E. This ploy gave the movie spontaneity and drove it to success. fluent in Arabic and familiar with the tribes of the Syrian Desert. but focus on the goal of advancement. a master samurai. Ask for little. This failed and Metternich played to the weaknesses of Czar Alexander I and he thwarted attempts of Russia assisting Greece. This provides you more to negotiate with and does not give your opponent time to regroup. 21) Negotiate While Advancing: The Diplomatic-War Strategy. Roosevelt (D). In 1800 Napoleon had to defeat the Austrian armies in Italy. he cautioned his emissary to not let Metternich negotiate. In World War I the British tried to capture Aqaba from the Turks. you get only a little. • War by Other Means. But Napoleon had made enough alternate plans and he kept maneuvering to the new situations at hand and he defeated them at Marengo where is original plans had predicted he would. The city-state of Athens did not support his ascent. stranding (and out maneuvering) the young swordsman.[1] When negotiating a settlement you should not let up on the pressure to advance. In 1937 Harry Cohn of Columbia Pictures hired Leo McCarey to direct The Awful Truth The script was poor and McCarey had to figure out how to improve the script. 2. In the negotiations between the Athenians and Philip II he continued to make promises of peace but continued to grow his empire.The 33 Strategies of War 1. 4. He made his plans and nearly everything went wrong. His fast maneuvering denied the Turks a target and he was able to cut their supply lines resulting in the surrender of Aqaba. Roosevelt waited until Landon did not have enough time to move from this stance and attacked. He routinely made changes at the last minute and would wait to shoot until he felt it was right. was challenged by a young unnamed swordsman. In the 1936 US presidential campaign the Republican Party nominated Alf Landon to run against incumbent Franklin D.

Misinformation and decoys can consume your opponent. their end is always poor. He had few friends in the party and soundly defeated the well-seasoned political veterans. • Humiliation of the defeated only creates animosity. • Keys to Warfare • Dreamers never complete. reducing your opponents in the future. A wealth of misinformation. The Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan. • No Exit.) • Ending as Beginning. I can find no reference to alliances that would bring that. • • Conclusion in exhaustion is not favorable since there is not energy left to create alliances. and the resulting war. Maintain a cover story in case you are discovered. you must end an engagement positively. Don't rely only on deception. These included a fake army in England (FUSAG) and a look alike of General Montgomery in the Mediterranean theater. Lyndon Johnson fought a tough election for the Texas 10th Congressional seat in 1937. 22) Know How To End Things: The Exit Strategy. paralyzed Hitler's decision making capabilities when the actual invasion started.[1] Know when you are beat and cut your loses. Conclude realizing the end is more important than the success of the fight. • Keys to Warfare . Significant expense (monetarily. slowed his reaction. Part 5: Unconventional (Dirty) War Reversal Uncovered deception is a huge advantage to your opponent. politically and in troop loss) caused Gorbachev to withdraw Soviet troops. it is tool not a plan.[1] Deception is an ancient art and invaluable when throwing people off your track. • Closure needs satisfaction for all involved. caused a no win situation for the Soviet Union primarily due to the lack of understanding of the Afghan people. completed in 1989. (Note: A potential error in the book where Greene refers to Afghanistan's "ports on the Indian Ocean". the allies developed a significant number of deceptive plans. Know how to win with flair and bring a positive conclusion to the encounter. During preparation for the invasion at Normandy in World War II. Immediately after the election he amiably approached his opponents thanking them to the hard fight and successfully wooing them into his alliance. • The False Mirror.The 33 Strategies of War 11 Reversal No reversal. 23) Weave a Seamless Blend of Fact and Fiction: Misperception Strategies.

This caused confusion in their opponents and terrified them not to engage in battle. American Civil War General led a battle to capture Vicksburg.[1] Do the unexpected. This move was not expected since it would mean that Grant's forces would not have their communication lines open. Cassius Clay challenged then Heavyweight champion Sonny Liston to the boxing in 1962. • Unconventional Warfare • Use tactics that your opponent does not know. Make the real look false and the false look real to create complete ambiguity. title. . Reversal There is no advantage to attacking by the expected means and methods. Marcel Duchamp chose a radical new format—anyone could exhibit a work of art. if always radical do something ordinary. Duchamp under the pseudonym "R. He moved troops across the Mississippi River and sent them toward Jackson to cut the supply lines to Vicksburg. • Act crazy but calculated. Hannibal exhibited erratic behavior drew the Roman army across the river and then shocked them with his use of elephants. 2.The 33 Strategies of War 12 • • • Make a strong front look weak. They chose to face him at the Trebia river. In 219 BC Rome decide to take the offensive with Hannibal. • Mix ordinary tactics with the unusual. For the New York Society of Independent Artists' first exhibition. Maintain a pattern with the intent of changing it for surprise. Grant. In 1862 Ulysses S. 4. Mutt" submitted a urinal laying on its back called the Fountain. If always calm be radical. 3. Mississippi. Pemberton. yelling the exact opposite of their intent. 5. There was outrage in the organization. who was unable to predict the impact of the maneuver. Use imaginative and complete camouflage. The Romans made many other attempts to draw Hannibal into a fight but Hannibal did the opposite of what they expected giving him a great advantage. It surprised Confederate General John C. Feed your opponent with misinformation. 24) Take The Line of Least Expectation: The Ordinary-Extraordinary Strategy. but opened a new view and challenged the definition of art. • Historical Examples 1. Clay's unorthodox behavior and fighting technique and his nonconformist behavior gave him a great advantage in the fight since his opponent did not know what to expect. • Continue to think of new things. • • • Make a weak front look strong and attack from another direction. This band would act crazy during battles. The Ojibwa tribe had an elite band of warriors called the Wendigokan.

Pope Leo X wanted to complete construction of St. • Justify your actions based on morality. Look to turn that alliance to your positive.[1] Remove any targets you have for your opponents. The retreat lead to further decimation. . Reversal You cannot use conventional means with a guerrilla you must deny them targets. do what is necessary to hide the temporary nature of your business. he started the practice of selling indulgences. • Represent yourself as "good". ensure that they do not use you negatively.[1] Form temporary allies to meet your current needs. Cossacks sniped him. Peter's Basilica.000 by the time they reached Moscow. Exhaust the opponent. Other will use this against you. He argued his stand based solely on the Bible systematically refuting each of the Pope's retorts. • The Lure of the Void. your opponent as "bad". This effort by Martin Luther was the genesis of the Lutheran and Protestant traditions.[1] Justify your cause as the correct and moral way. • The Moral Offensive. Guerrilla warfare is strongly psychological. If you do attack. Duke of Burgundy expanded his empire by forming an alliance with Edward IV of England to attack Louis XI of France. Undermine the alliances of your opponents to weaken them. 1467 Charles I. Reversal Be wary of people that come to your assistance. This can alienate and disgust your supporters. Wars of self-interest are short and defined. 26) Deny Them Targets: The Strategy of the Void. • Keys to Warfare • • • Guerrilla bands are easier to hide and maneuver. • • Wars on moral grounds are long and protracted. • • Large armies are susceptible to guerrilla attack. A German theologian and Priest named Martin Luther challenged the practices in the 95 Theses saying that only God could forgive one's sins. • Keys to Warfare • Reveal the hypocrisy of your opponent. Show yourself as the underdog. • The Perfect Ally. attempting to annihilate the roots of the immoral. attack strong and quick at any central point they have. retreating Russian troops left behind burned out towns and fields and no food.The 33 Strategies of War 13 Reversal Playing the high ground can make you look righteous and condescending. No targets will frustrate your opponents increasing the chance they will make a mistake. • An immoral act will ruin your reputation.000 troops was reduced to 100. To raise the funds for the church. 25) Occupy the Moral High Ground: The Righteous Strategy. 27) Seem to Work for the Interests of Others While Furthering Your Own: The Alliance Strategy. • Make your opponent start the actual "fight". Show your opponent's self-serving side. Do not create a front or make your front so broad that attacking it attacks their base. The initial French force of 450. Lure your opponent to attack to use guerrilla tactics effectively. Napoleon's 1812 invasion of Russia met with a retreating Russian army putting up little resistance and buying time. But King Louis XI found out about the invasion and formed an alliance with Edward IV removing the threat from the Duke.

Later. Académie Française was founded in 1635 to maintain the purity of the French language. Murray Bowen.The 33 Strategies of War • False Alliances. Joan Crawford had a continual rivalry with Norma Shearer and Bette Davis. • We need allies in our sturggles—for resource. Elizabeth Dole. whose department Vicksburg fell under. • Keys to Warfare • Find those to advance your current • interests. Bokuden accepted the challenge. Bush for the Republicans' 1988 presidential nomination. Bokuden attacked his right. provide them with assignments they cannot complete and damage their reputation. she stole the spotlight while accepting Anne Bancroft's Oscar for The Miracle Worker. this angered Genzaemon positioning him to make many errant moves. • The Art of One-Upmanship . 5. When they are near the end of their destruction offer help. Use this sparingly. He wanted fame and ascension to the presidency. This and other actions infuriated McClernand. knowing of Dole's temper. Hide your involvement and maintain your innocent. brokering resolution. . 3. With Shearer she worked to annoy her on set and got her to expose her nasty demeanor. Look for the internal rival. was challenged by an ambidextrous young samurai. Tsukahara Bokuden. Bob Dole of Kansas challenged George H. Musashi showed up late and in non-standard attire. His eventual humiliation led to the Bishop leaving the Académie. John McClernand volunteered as a Brigadier General in the American Civil War. She contrived two methods for steeling their thunder. but exposing a series on gossipy relations that were in the family. a direct approach will minimize that cost. 2. but focused challenger's attention on the "unfair" use of his left arm. but help show your innocence. While with Davis. Doles anger came through in the media severely damaging him. 28) Give Your Rivals Enough Rope To Hang Themselves: The One-Upmanship Strategy. W. caught wind of the plans and diverted troops head to McClernand for his own use. a psychiatrist. Although qualified. Employ others to work the anxiety and make it bigger. Bush's strategist. he was arrogant and offensive. find their weak spot and needle it to make them anxious. On inauguration day the abbé de Caumartin gave a subtly mocking speech that was seen as such by all but the Bishop. 14 • • Reversal This approach can raise suspicions and be politically costly. General Grant. In this process he actually created a degree of autonomy for himself which gave him the power to control the situation and facilitate his siblings in creating a healthy family relationship. used his clinical knowledge to resolve a personal family situation. When fighting allies create mistrust between them dividing their ranks. Play the autonomous center.[1] Give your opponents the space to make mistakes. renowned samurai. • Historical Examples 1. He wrote a series of letters to family members in order to show concern for the person. He tried using his influence with President Abraham Lincoln to try to take over the siege of Vicksburg. • Help someone else you need help from to create debt. skill or protection. Damage other's alliances. Lee Atwater. the swordsman Genzaemon was challenged by Miyamoto Musashi. qualifications as United States Secretary of Transportation. not to rub in the defeat. Get the rival to over-react and step back and let them do the rest. In the fight. whom made numerous moves that alienated him from his allies. Mississippi. spread rumors about his wife's. In 1694 King Louis IV of France appointed the Bishop of Noyons to the counsel. in 1605. 4.

[1] Fight with words that will occupy your opponent. Upon the fall of France to the Germans in World War II. Look for opportunities in a rival's troubled times. to make a lasting impression. Shock will bring short lived communication. • Keys to Warfare • • People dislike confrontation so giving little pieces is easy. make them think and try to interpret your meaning. These unpublished works were a stepping stone for Machiavelli to return to favor. Be patient.The 33 Strategies of War 15 Reversal When being attacked by this method. Communication must focus on change. • The Mastermind. . Hitchcock furthered his indirect communication by actions contrary to the situation—working his actor's minds. The ploy was to make them understand the script they were about to play. 30) Penetrate Their Minds: Communication Strategies. • Keys to Warfare • • Use the profound to stay with other people over time. • • Communicate with action. By the time they notice your growth. and engaged his friend Francesco Vettori to show it to the Medici's.[1] Make progress in small steps. your opponent will have to fight to get it back. 29) Take Small Bites: The Fait Accompli Strategy. time is your ally. de Gaulle fought bitterly with Giraud and was able to fill his staff with de Gaulle loyalists. As Florence went in and out of Medici control between 1494 and 1512 Machiavelli was displaced from his job. In filming The 39 Steps in 1935. The broadcast was met with great public support. After his death the manuscripts were published in multiple languages. building the French Resistance with Jean Moulin. Reversal Watch other people's communication for generalities that hide their intents or cliches that distract peoples focus. when needed. Charles de Gaulle received permission from Winston Churchill to broadcast to the Fighting French over the BBC. often going unnoticed by your rivals. • Silence can say more than words. He later wrote Discourses on Livy. Use actions other than words. He continued to expand this small foothold by leading forces in Central Africa. stop it decisively. it may be too late. not only words. • Visceral Communication. • Piecemeal Conquest. • • Take control. Eventually his works permeated the minds of many cultures having a greater communication power than Machiavelli could have ever imagined. Niccolò Machiavelli worked in Florence's Second Chancery. In order to stay in touch with the Florentine government he wrote The Prince. on princely rule. Alfred Hitchcock handcuffed the leads Madeleine Carroll and Robert Donat and then feinted losing the key and left them handcuffed for many hours. When FDR's plotted to replace him with Henri Giraud.

The 33 Strategies of War 16 Reversal Look for the saboteur within. Stop passive-aggressive behavior quickly. It did. Threaten but do not act. advised against allying with Francisco Franco of Spain to use the island of Gibraltar to weaken the British and assured Hitler that Italy's Pietro Badoglio was not about to surrender in 1943. The Governor-General of India. wanted to breathe more life into the surrealistic movement. Be patient and take small steps. • Keys to Warfare • • • Do not attack the walls of the fort. Austrian Prince Metternich used this to subtly move the Czar to a position of supporting the "old guard rule" over any form of liberalization. 1929 André Breton. Their aggressive acts will benefit you and garner support from others. • • . people normally see only the positive approach. Once there. Since there is the presentation of both "good" and "bad" traits. Dali left for New York where he made a successful career and became synonymous with surrealism. • • • Exploit the disaffected with your opponent and use them. • Friendly Takeover. Only after the latter did the Germanic-SS determine he was working to subvert Hitler. • Passive Power. Lord Edward Irwin. Reversal Intimidation is the reversal of the passive-aggressive behavior. To protest the Salt Tax imposed by the British Raj. but do not be paranoid. Gandhi had chosen his protest wisely—benign to the British and poignant to the Indians. 32) Dominate While Seeming to Submit: The Passive-Aggressive Strategy. Irwin had limited his options since he had not acted early to stop the march and now it would be a big issue. He felt Salvador Dalí could provide that boost.[1] Use non-aggression to fight your opponent. Train yourself to see passive-aggressive and react to it. • Keys to Warfare • Using passive-aggressive behavior the "positive" stands out. was relieved at the seeming insignificant action Gandhi proposed. • The Invisible Enemy. Keep your group of conspirators small. you do not need to attack or show your intentions. Slowly take over from within. Lord Edward Irwin did nothing to stop the march.[1] Infiltrate your opponent's camp. Mahatma Gandhi stage a 200 mile march of to the ocean. • Do not be too eager for power. Befriend your opponent and work from within their mind. • Succumb to others. • The Guilt Weapon. But Dali's affinity to Hitler and Lenin brought the group to a boil. Treat your troops fairly and they will police themselves. Hitler was impressed and trusted him for advice. attack from within. During his tenure he advised against the invasion of the United Kingdom. But the march attracted thousands. He used the 1820 revolts in Spain and Naples to solicit a meeting of the monarchs to address the issues. 31) Destroy From Within: The Inner Front Strategy. Adolf Hitler assigned Wilhelm Canaris to set up the Abwehr (Germany's intelligence group for the General Staff) in late 1933. Undermine the morale of your opponent's troops. Czar Alexander I wanted to reform the monarchies of Europe. while covertly fighting. creator of the Surrealist Manifesto.

• The Anatomy of Panic. • Keys to Warfare • Responding dispassionately will defeat the cause. Randomize the frequency of attack.Trade Space for Time: The Nonenagement Strategy Part IV: Offensive Warfare • • • • • • 12 . 33) Sow Uncertainty and Panic Through Acts of Terror: The Chain Reaction Strategy. • • • More effective if your army is mobile and small.[1] The goal is chaos and creating the lack of trust in familiar surroundings.Transform Your War into a Crusade: Morale Strategies Part III: Defensive Warfare • • • • 8 .The 33 Strategies of War 17 Reversal Direct and symmetrical warfare. exploit being the victim.Defeat Them in Detail: The Divide and Conquer Strategy • 18 . • Thwart the attacks at the point of the attack.Control the Dynamic: Forcing Strategies 16 . What was once safe is now uncertain. This new form of warfare appeared to be able to manifest itself in an omnipresent form against its opponents. Complete Table of Contents • Preface Part I: Self-Directed Warfare • • • • 1 .Create a Threatening Presence: Deterrence Strategies 11 .Overwhelm Resistance With Speed and Suddenness: The Blitzkrieg Strategy 15 . the enemy succumbs to your will.Turn the Tables: The Counterattack Strategy 10 .Create a Sense of Urgency and Desperation: The Death-Ground Strategy Part II: Organizational (Team) Warfare • 5 . Do Not Lose Your Presence of Mind: The Counterbalance Strategy 4 . • Fighting back in a disproportionate manner fuels their cause.Know Your Enemy: The Intelligence Strategy 14 .an arhcaic way of waging war that is not useful. The Nizari. With so much panic.Expose and Attack Your Enemy's Soft Flank: The Turning Strategy • 19 . • Create unstable ground. up-front and honest-. In 1092 death of Nizam al-Mulk was at first felt to be a reprisal for the attempts to suppress the growth of the sect Nizari Ismaili.Avoid The Snare of Groupthink: The command and Control Strategy • 6 . a group cloaked in secrecy.Amidst the Turmoil of Events.Pick Your Battles: The Perfect Economy Strategy 9 .Lose The Battles But Win The War: Grand Strategy 13 .Envelop The Enemy: The Annihilation Strategy .Hit Them Where it Hurts: The Center of Gravity Strategy 17 . just to to have things safe and clean again.Segment Your Forces: The Controlled Chaos Strategy • 7 .Declare War on Your Enemies: The Polarity Strategy 2 .Do Not Fight the Last War: The Guerrilla-War-of-the-Mind Strategy 3 . Take the moral high ground. had developed a new method of revolt where Assassins (derived from Arabic Hashshashin) would emerge from a seemingly calm crowd and kill their target with a dagger.

Retrieved 2006-07-25.com. Viking Adult. January 2006.Penetrate Their Minds: Communication Strategies 31 . STLtoday. . stltoday.Give Your Rivals Enough Rope To Hang Themselves: The One-Upmanship Strategy 29 . ca/ article. . "The 33 Strategies of War" (http:/ / www. html . htm) on 2006-05-14. html). dcmilitary.Seem to Work for the Interests of Others While Furthering Your Own: The Alliance Strategy 28 . 2006 [2] Youssef Aboul-Enein (30 March 2006).ca. jsp?content=20060320_123270_123270). "The 33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene" (http:/ / web. com/ teaching/ 2006_fall_chr_apol_mdiv/ syllabus_chr_theol_fall06_SWBTS_4373.Destroy From Within: The Inner Front Strategy 32 . Retrieved 2007-07-25.Dominate While Seeming to Submit: The Passive-Aggressive Strategy 33 . by Robert Greene" (http:/ / web. . Retrieved 2006-07-25. Archived from the original (http:/ / www. [6] "Indigenous Leadership Forum IGOV 595/384 A01" (http:/ / web. dcmilitary. ca/ ~igov/ programs/ masters/ IGOV_595_S01/ IGOV 595 INDIGENOUS LEADERSHIP FORUM. org/ web/ 20060529060716/ http:/ / www. archive. "PHREL 4373 Christian Apologetics" (http:/ / www. Robert. . html) on 2006-05-29. uvic. powerseductionandwar. The Waterline. com/ navy/ seaservices/ 11_02/ commentary/ 40435-1. pdf) (PDF). com/ navy/ seaservices/ 11_02/ commentary/ 40435-1.Know How To End Things: The Exit Strategy Part V: Unconventional (Dirty) War • • • • • • • • • • • 23 .Maneuver Them Into Weakness: The Ripening For the Sickle Strategy • 21 . Retrieved 2006-07-25. nsf/ book/ story/ 1407D1ABABFBA31B862571030075C442?OpenDocument). pdf) (PDF).The 33 Strategies of War • 20 .Deny Them Targets: The Strategy of the Void 27 . . Archived from the original (http:/ / www. Retrieved 2006-07-25. archive. Dembski.Occupy the Moral High Ground: The Righteous Strategy 26 . [7] William A.Sow Uncertainty and Panic Through Acts of Terror: The Chain Reaction Strategy 18 • Selected Bibliography • Index External links 33 Strategies of War Interview [9] Features Robert Greene interview covering the 33 Strategies of War as well as abridged version of 33 strategies References [1] Greene. Military Ink. net/ the-33-strategies-of-war.Take Small Bites: The Fait Accompli Strategy 30 . htm). org/ web/ 20060514115205/ http:/ / www.Negotiate While Advancing: The Diplomatic-War Strategy • 22 . "The 33 Strategies of War". Comprint Military Publications. "We shall fight them at the water cooler" (http:/ / www. com/ stltoday/ entertainment/ reviews. Rogers Media Inc. designinference. [5] Joseph Losos (29 January 2006).Take The Line of Least Expectation: The Ordinary-Extraordinary Strategy 25 . [8] http:/ / www. Retrieved 2006-07-25. . macleans. com/ books/ 2006/ january/ 0670034576. militaryink.Weave a Seamless Blend of Fact and Fiction: Misperception Strategies 24 . com [9] http:/ / robertgreene. militaryink. [3] "33 Strategies of War (The). [4] Mark Steyn (20 March 2006). com/ books/ 2006/ january/ 0670034576. Macleans.

Bmclaughlin9. Octopus-Hands. 59 anonymous edits Image Sources. SueHay. TGothier.org/w/index. DGG.Article Sources and Contributors 19 Article Sources and Contributors The 33 Strategies of War  Source: http://en. Bencorman. 0/ .jpg  License: unknown  Contributors: Spacepotato. CarolGray. Seaoneil.org/w/index. Mattisse. org/ licenses/ by-sa/ 3.jpg  Source: http://en. Rollie413. Soetermans. JustAGal. Pascal666. Tevildo. Attilios. Xhosan.0 Unported http:/ / creativecommons. Blake-. Spacepotato. Ground Zero. Saigyo.wikipedia. Wangi. Toddwill License Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3. Toddwill. Choess.php?oldid=405054600  Contributors: Antaeus Feldspar. KeithD. Dpv.wikipedia.php?title=File:33StratagiesWar. Neri Brandão. Licenses and Contributors Image:33StratagiesWar. Kimchi. Giraffedata. Thesnuffla. Jd0111a. Kinneyboy90. Pegship. Ironmanxsl. GregorB. Mild Bill Hiccup.sg. Carl Logan. WolfgangFaber. JaGa. Jeff3000. Kurzon.