"When the weapons have grown dull and spirits depressed, when our strength has been expended and resources consumed, then the feudal lords will take advantage of our exhaustion to arise. Even though you have wise generals, they will not be able to achieve a good result.
"Thus in military campaigns I have heard of awkward speed but have never seen any skill in lengthy campaigns. No country has ever profited from protracted warfare. Those who do not thoroughly comprehend the dangers inherent in employing the army are incapable of truly knowing the potential advantages of military actions."
from Sun Tzu, The Art of War. Ralph D. Sawyer, (Trans.) and Mei-chun Sawyer. Barnes & Noble Books, by arrangment with Westview Press, 1994 (pp. 173, paragraphs 2-4). I recommend it!
|Part of the Terra-cotta Army of Xi'an. Picture by Maros at Wikipedia.|