According to the ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu, there are two ways to victory. The first is winning without fighting the enemy, the second is to win after battling the enemy. The former is the better, wiser option with the latter being the second best choice. Even if you win a hundred battles, it is not the idea victory. Achieving victory without a battle is the far better option. The best method is to predict the enemy’s movements and outwit them. The second best method is to sever the ties between the enemy nation and their close allies, isolating them. The third method is to engage in battle with the enemy and the worst method is to attack them using all means and resources.
To avoid a war and still achieve victory you must anticipate the enemy’s plans and to do this you must gather intelligence. Thus, whether you win or lose a war depends on whether you have the right intelligence. 지피지기 백전불태(知彼知己 百戰不殆, jipijigi baekjeonbultae): If you know the enemy and know yourself, even if you fight a hundred battles you are not in danger. If you fight only knowing your military capabilities and not the state of the enemy, the chances of victory is half-half. If you do not know the enemy’s or your own military’s capabilities, then you will lose every fight.