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Strategic Approaches to Dealing with Internal and External Troubles in a Kingdom

We decoded Kautilya Arthashastra Book 9 Chapter 3 for you, Here’s what you can learn from it:

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The problem of slight annoyance in the rear and considerable profit in the front To cause loss and impoverishment of the enemy’s servants and friends in the rear and employ the commander of the army or the heir-apparent to lead the army to fetch profit in the front. The king may go in person if he can ward off the annoyance in the rear. He may take hostages if he is apprehensive of external troubles or abandon his march. Internal troubles are more serious than external troubles.
Provocation of any minister, priest, commander-in-chief, or heir-apparent Get rid of the internal enemy by giving up the king’s own fault or pointing out the danger arising from an external enemy. When the priest is guilty of treason, relief should be found either by confining or banishing him; when the heir-apparent is guilty, confinement or death, provided there is another son of good character.
Attempt by a royal family member to seize the kingdom Win him over by holding out hopes or conciliate him by allowing him to enjoy what he has seized or make an agreement with him or send him out on a mission with an inimical force or secure to him land from an enemy or make a conspiracy with a frontier king or wild tribes.
Provocation of ministers other than the prime minister Use necessary strategic means to overcome the internal ministerial troubles.
Provocation of the chief of a district, the officer in charge of the boundary, the chief of wild tribes, and a conquered king Overcome external trouble by setting one against the other. Capture those who have strongly fortified themselves through the agency of a frontier king, the chief of wild tribes, a scion of his family, or a spy. Prevent them from combining with an enemy by appointing some persons to murder him.
Intrigue with a person capable of causing or alleviating troubles Use intrigue to make use of their capability to alleviate troubles. Use counter-intrigue to secure the friendship of a reliable person who is capable of undertaking works and to afford protection against calamities. Consider their disposition or obstinate temper.
Intrigue by a foreigner of obstinate temper with local persons Secure the destruction of the enemy and the acquisition of the enemy’s lands if he kills his own master and comes to the foreigner or if the enemy kills him. Or if the enemy has no friends to count, his partisans and other guilty persons who are apprehensive of similar punishment will perturb his peace.

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