Strategy Nineteen Remove Firewood from Under the Caldron
Avoid a contest of strength with the enemy but seek to weaken its position in accordance with the image of Dui underneath Qian.
Strategy Twenty Muddle the Water to Seize Fish
Take advantage of the enemy’s internecine fight and make use of its weakness and lack of judgement. Sui: At nightfall, return home to rest.
Strategy Twenty-One The Cicada Sloughs Its Skin
Maintain the original shape and play out the original pose, so that the ally does not doubt and the enemy does not move. Submission and stillness lead to decay.
Strategy Twenty-Two Bold the Door to Seize the Thief
Force the small enemy into a quagmire. Bo: It is not favorable to set forth. [It is disadvantageous to pursue a weak, tottering enemy for long distance. ]
Strategy Twenty-Three Befriend Distant States While Attacking Nearby States
When circumscribed in situation and restricted in disposition, seek profit from nearby and keep peril at a distance. Fire above the lake.
Strategy Twenty-Four Attack Hu by a Borrowed Path
A small state is sandwiched between two great powers. If one of them attempts to bring it to submission, the other will be able to take control under the pretext of aiding it. Kun: When one utters words, one is not believed.