Obama and the Art of War? is he following Sun Tzu?

I am rereading the art of war and couldnt help but notice that Obama seems to be following quite a bit of the ideas contained therein.
anyone else?

Which ones?

A lot of the ideas in the Art of War aren’t exactly distinct to it, anyway.

I haven’t read Art of War, but among the snippets I’ve picked up are to prepare and plan in advance for every contingency, and if you have the strength, to attack your enemy on all sides, to force him to defend on all sides. Obama’s certainly done both of those.

On the last point here I can picture McCain chanting “Fight with me!”


Ready for Tuesday to see if we can turn Arizona Blue! :cool:

Even if we don’t make the state Blue it will be with the knowledge that we made McCain spend precious resources in his home state that he could not afford to use.

Its not like using The Art of War for **non-**military purposes is unusual. Japanese businesses are said to follow its philosophy.

I am sure he has read a lot about the topic, not just Sun Tzu.

I’ve never read AoW but it’s something people are always talking about . . . As I understand it, the doctrine is to avoid head-to-head battle as far as possible, to win by wearing out and confusing the enemy. “When the enemy attacks, retreat; when the enemy retreats, harass.” Don’t see how that applies to the Obama campaign’s strategy.

I thought that was Miyamoto Musashi’s Book of Five Rings.

More murky connections to foreigners eh? Sun Tzu. What kind of name is that, anyway? Aztec? The more I hear, the more I think this guy isn’t a real American.

I’ll bet this Sun Tzu guy is the real author of Dreams of My Father.

Well, if not Obama himself, he has some smart educated people managing his campaign who no doubt recognize the value of well-considered strategery.

In any case, did Art of War introduce anything new, or was it just a codification of concepts that were already widely and informally known?

It’s not really that the Art of War [great book!] introduces anything new, but what it does do is explain the philosophy of courage and tactical fortitude that many great leaders simply are too fearful to use. Obama has exemplified what GiGObuster linked to. His campaign set out for one purpose and one purpose only. To win. McCain was floundering in the beginning and in the background for most of the primaries. I do not believe the adjective “Floundering” has ever been used to describe the Obama campaign.

Sun Tzu? That’s nothing. I hear he’s “familiar with” the works of Shan Yu!!

Maybe, but it’s also the Art of War. It’s incredibly popular with young American businessy-types.

The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene was a NY Times best seller for a while.

There is a lot written on the topic by many authors throughout history.

It is although I wouldn’t rule out The Art of War as a guide.

So, you think that he’ll personally take charge of the whole “waterboarding” thing once he’s in office?, so he can “really” know his enemy?

“The Art of War” is so generic, broad, and common-sense in its guidance that pretty much ANY successful competitive endeavour can be claimed to have followed it.

Agreed. I think Sun Tzu is incredibly over-rated. His “maxims” are so blindingly obvious. How do you say “Well, duh!” in Chinese?

But it’s surprising how many, often unsuccessful, endeavors don’t. This season McCain seems to be following Custer’s lead, convinced that pressing the attack can overcome any enemy. Y’know–the kind of people Sun Tzu taught you how beat.

Yeah, well basics have to be taught too. I never understood the concept of looking down on the 101 coursework. Everyone is a Freshman at some point. When Sun Tzu wrote it, it might not have been so blindingly obvious.