back the fuck up
There’s another story that I like about a Chinese general who had to defend a city with only a handful of soldiers from a huge enemy horde that was in all likelihood going to steamroll the place flat within hours of showing up.
So when said horde did arrive, they saw the general sitting outside the city’s open gates, drinking tea. The horde sent a couple of emissaries over to see what was what, and the general greeted them cheerfully and invited them all to come and take tea with him.
The horde decided that this was a scenario that had “MASSIVE FUCKING TRAP” written all over it in beautiful calligraphy and promptly fucked off.
Whoever that general was, he was clearly the Ancient Chinese equivalent of Sam Vimes.
did he just invite us over for tea nah man i’m out
The story in that comment seems like it may be the one with Zhuge (or Chuko) Liang. It was his reputation for extreme cleverness that made that plan work, not so much the action itself. Sima Yi, the opposing general, had fought Zhuge Liang before and knew he did that sort of thing.
I read another one about his Southern Campaign, where he had to pacify a rebellion, one of his opponents here was an aristocrat named Meng Huo.
How did Liang overcome this army? Using his shrewdness, he managed to trick and capture Meng Huo and his army and then…treated them all extremely nicely and released them despite knowing they’d fight him again.
He did this seven times. He showed extreme grace and mercy to the defeated enemy seven times, and even allowed them to try fighting again. After all of this, their will to fight had pretty much vanished entirely, as it had been since their first defeat, and Meng Huo declared that they would never rebel again.
While simply executing the enemy might have worked on the short term, Liang did better than that and won everyone’s hearts, turning Meng Huo into a friend instead of risking further rebellion by killing such a respected figure.
People should appreciate the power of kindness more, I think…
I don’t normally trust this site but it seems some fact checking was done, and everything is in order—also the illustrations made me lol.