Surprise – the art of war

October 27, 2016

Not very long ago a man who claimed to offer security services approached me. His proposition seemed benign enough – it goes something like this: I would pay him a monthly fee and in consideration he would ensure that none of my fruits would be stolen.

One evening this man appeared with five burly men at my gate. I was of course very cordial and suggested that we take a leisurely walk while we discussed the details of what he had to offer in the way of ‘security’ services.

As we walked I asked him rather pointedly – what if I don’t see the need for your protection services. The man turned to his other colleagues laughed and exclaimed casually – ‘then you may have to run the risk of losing fruit….’ He went on to add, ‘you will certainly lose sleep.’ I smiled and suggested we walk below the valley.

It was a very long walk and he rambled on and on. When we reached the cul-de-sac at the end of the road. I turned to this man with an expression of sternness narrowing by eyes and flaring my nostrils and asked of him in a whispering rush.

‘I need assurances that you are an expert in providing security services. Can I have proof please?’

The man looked back as if to consult his colleagues. But for some curious reason they were all not there. They had all disappeared. He reached frantically for his mobile phone only to realize there was no reception. After all we were in a deep valley smack in the middle of nowhere. There’s no reception. It could well have been a place that was so desolate that even if a man screamed his lungs out, it would all amount to a drop in the infinity of the ocean.

That was when I put my arm around this man who was already sweating and breathing very heavily – and suggested, maybe I should be the one to offer you protection.


‘Never let the cat out the bag during the first act. Try to see it from the point of a view of a stand up comedian – where he always starts by leading the audience down a garden path and slowly builds up the sense of anticipation and just when the pressure is at it’s highest – he throws out the punch line.

It’s the same with strategy always engage people with what they expect; it is what they are able to discern and confirm and reaffirm that settles them into a predictable pattern of behavior.

This is jugular.

Absolutely nothing other than what they’re accustomed to expect should occupy their minds while you prepare for the extraordinary moment — which they cannot possibly anticipate. Nor respond coherently. This is how one engineers pandemonium.

I once broke the back of a land consortium specifically set up to prevent me from buying land at a fair price. These landowners created a clearing house where they could virtually jack up the price of land thereby making it impossible for me to further extend my land holdings.

One day I hatched an elaborate plan to convince everyone that I had fallen on hard times. I put up an oversized for sale sign outside my plantation. Went around with toggling a bottle of Johnny Walker filled with Jia Jia Liang teh and pretended to be a drunkard in public. Even started bellowing out vulgar Hokkien folk songs in the middle of the night to convince everyone that I was a washout.

This was vital to convince the evil consortium that even if I harbored any imperialistic designs to gobble up more land – it was impossible. Result: they let their guard down. Just a while. And that very moment when their backs were turned, I rushed up their skirt Pearl harbored them.

Thereafter I disappeared and switched off my phone for months on end.

Recently, a fractured group who once formed this consortium asked me, ‘is there any way for us to co exist and strive for a win-win relationship.’ I pretended to cry and murmured, that was all I ever wanted…peace….I lying thru my teeth of course.

This is the highest acme of war the uncanny ability to surprise. Eventually the consortium got so fed up. They formally proposed a ‘peace’ plan which required me to first consult them in future land acquisitions.

Naturally I agreed to all their draconian terms. One month after that I tore up the agreement and Pearl harbored them one more time.

Business is war!

Research and study this well.

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