Jiang Wei and Zhuge Liang’s Wei Campaigns: Damaging to Shu?

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Jiang Wei and Zhuge Liang’s Wei Campaigns: Damaging to Shu?

Unread postby Aname » Sun Aug 10, 2003 3:58 am

THE WARS LED BY ZHUGE LIANG & JIANG WEI...
was making Shu weaking?
if it did, what were their intension to start those meaningless wars??
.......
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Re: THE WARS TOWARD WEI LED BY ZHUGE LIANG & JIANG WEI

Unread postby TheGreatNads » Sun Aug 10, 2003 4:08 am

Aname wrote:THE WARS LED BY ZHUGE LIANG & JIANG WEI...
was making Shu weaking?


Yes they were. Especially Jiang Wei's. Kongming's didn't hurt Shu too much, but they definately weakened it somewhat.

Aname wrote:if it did, what were their intension to start those meaningless wars??


Their intention was to conquer Wei and earn fame.(Jiang Wei's at least) Too bad they're both incompetents, and Zhuge Liang in particular can't get over his prejudgices in choosing officers. Those campaigns probably wouldn't have been meaningless if there was more use of Wei Yan...
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Unread postby Shadowlink » Sun Aug 10, 2003 2:15 pm

I don't think Zhuge Liang made Shu weak during the war but instead made the soldiers spirit rose up. I think Jiang Wei made shu weak when wagin war against Wei. If Zhuge Liang trust Wei Yan maybe the soliders spirit will be better.
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Sun Aug 10, 2003 11:46 pm

Jiang Wei's campaigns definitely weakened Shu.By his usage of critical resources and mainly due to the fact that he was thrashed in 4 battles by Deng Ai.Also,his campaigns made absolutely no positive gains.

Zhuge's campaign were productive however.Zhuge,save for Jie Ting,never lost a battle.Shu gained Wu Du and they also disposed of several dangerous Wei generals.Additionally,Zhuge's presence did alert Wei to the fact that Shu was still a dangerous enemy despite Liu bei being dead.If anything,I think Zhuge Liang's campaigns strengthened Shu.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Mon Aug 11, 2003 1:41 am

Exar Kun wrote:Zhuge's campaign were productive however.Zhuge,save for Jie Ting,never lost a battle.

You forgot about the battle of Bei Yuan (noted in SGZ). Also, we're not even talking about the claim from the official record of Jin Shu.

Exar Kun wrote:Shu gained Wu Du

Thanks to Chen Shi, and btw, what's the big deal with Wu Du?

Exar Kun wrote:and they also disposed of several dangerous Wei generals.

Wang Shuang served his time in Wu's prison (just like Yu Jin did) before being killed so I don't see what's the big deal with this guy. Zhang He was a great Wei general no doubt but he wasn't the only one.

Exar Kun wrote:Additionally,Zhuge's presence did alert Wei to the fact that Shu was still a dangerous enemy despite Liu bei being dead.If anything,I think Zhuge Liang's campaigns strengthened Shu.

No way. Where do you suppose the food supplies and other resources came from? Do you suppose that a small country like Shu with population around 1 million or so could support a relatively large army that went on the offensive to no avail for 4 times within 5 years without draining its resources? Have you wonder why the first four campaigns were conducted in almost consecutive years (some even in the same year) while there was finally a two years lag between the 4th and the 5th campaign? Also, in the last expedition, Zhuge Liang brought with him some 100,000 soldiers. That would be around 1/10 of Shu's population. How many people would then be left in Shu for civil activities like agriculture, trade, etc.?

By alerting Wei that Shu was a dangerous enemy, Wei shifted its attention to the west (traditionally, Wei's attention had often been focused on Wu) and in the end, Shu got exterminated first. :lol:
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Mon Aug 11, 2003 3:35 am

You forgot about the battle of Bei Yuan (noted in SGZ). Also, we're not even talking about the claim from the official record of Jin Shu.


Where's that battle mentioned?I never saw any record of it.
And about Jin Shu,that the Book of Jin,right?You really think that's all that reliable when it comes to minor details?

Thanks to Chen Shi, and btw, what's the big deal with Wu Du?


*shrug*Hey,it's something.

Wang Shuang served his time in Wu's prison (just like Yu Jin did) before being killed so I don't see what's the big deal with this guy. Zhang He was a great Wei general no doubt but he wasn't the only one.


But how many more of these great were still alive at the time.Great talents were dying off and Zhang he was one of the few daring commanders who still lived.
And wasn't Wang Shuang supposed to be a fierce fighter?

No way. Where do you suppose the food supplies and other resources came from? Do you suppose that a small country like Shu with population around 1 million or so could support a relatively large army that went on the offensive to no avail for 4 times within 5 years without draining its resources? Have you wonder why the first four campaigns were conducted in almost consecutive years (some even in the same year) while there was finally a two years lag between the 4th and the 5th campaign? Also, in the last expedition, Zhuge Liang brought with him some 100,000 soldiers. That would be around 1/10 of Shu's population. How many people would then be left in Shu for civil activities like agriculture, trade, etc.?

By alerting Wei that Shu was a dangerous enemy, Wei shifted its attention to the west (traditionally, Wei's attention had often been focused on Wu) and in the end, Shu got exterminated first.


There's no record I know of that the people of Shu were starving.if they were,they certainly weren't showing it by rebelling.The food was there to be used by the army,so they used it.

Also,this war was hardly a cold war.if all was quiet for a while,Wei alaways launched an offensive against the quiet party.There was no chance of living in peace.Therefore,somebody had to do something.It was a lot better for Zhuge to attack and fail,losing not much more than the food they ate(while getting decent gains),than to have to deflect a Wei army who would have time to romp around in hanzhong.When you're a small state who can't afford to be caught off guard by a lrage force,it's better to not give that larger force time to attack,make them react rather you you be the one reacting.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Mon Aug 11, 2003 4:13 am

Exar Kun wrote:Where's that battle mentioned?I never saw any record of it.

That would be in Guo Huai's SGZ biography. Same thing was mentioned in Sima Yi's Jin Shu biography.

Exar Kun wrote:And about Jin Shu,that the Book of Jin,right?You really think that's all that reliable when it comes to minor details?

Why not? It was part of the official records, like SGZ, Han Shu, Hou Han Shu, etc. Compared to that, Xi Zuo Ci's HJCQ could have contained a personal bias. Furthermore, like I mentioned for a great many times in 3k.net, some of the details could be justified by certain statements in SGZ. I shall not elaborate here.

Exar Kun wrote:But how many more of these great were still alive at the time.Great talents were dying off and Zhang he was one of the few daring commanders who still lived.
And wasn't Wang Shuang supposed to be a fierce fighter?

There were quite a lot of Wei generals mentioned in Wei's SGZ section but they were not widely known since KOEI didn't even have them in the game series and LGZ didn't bother to portray them as big shots. I couldn't recall where it stated that Wang Shuang was a fierce fighter but even if he did, we're talking about a huge kingdom like Wei losing only a good fighter? What's the big deal? Compared to Zhang He, Wang Shuang, IMO was less valuable.



Exar Kun wrote:There's no record I know of that the people of Shu were starving.if they were,they certainly weren't showing it by rebelling.The food was there to be used by the army,so they used it.

Do you really need to have explicit mentions by the records that people were starving before you can infer that the series of campaigns drained Shu's resources? What do you mean by the food being there for the army to use? I don't suppose that Shu was a land whereby if one wants an apple, he can simply find an apple tree and pluck one from it?

Exar Kun wrote:Also,this war was hardly a cold war.if all was quiet for a while,Wei alaways launched an offensive against the quiet party.

How did you infer that Wei have always been bothering the quiet party? In any case, Wei had always been bothering Wu and not Shu. That's why Wei Yan came up with the sneak attack plan on Chang An prior the first expedition of Zhuge Liang since he knew that Chang An was not heavily defended during then.

Exar Kun wrote:There was no chance of living in peace.Therefore,somebody had to do something.

That's true. No chance of peace during then. However, do you suppose that there is only one solution for that? Launching expeditions after expeditions every year to no avail? Zhuge Liang could have focused more on civil issues (agriculture, trade, technology, education, etc.) so as to strengthen Shu. Remember that Liu Bei suffered a big defeat at Yi Ling during 222 A.D. and Zhuge Liang's first expedition started in 228 A.D. Do you think Shu had time to recover? That's not to mention that Zhuge Liang went on the southern expedition during 225 A.D.

Exar Kun wrote:It was a lot better for Zhuge to attack and fail,losing not much more than the food they ate(while getting decent gains),than to have to deflect a Wei army who would have time to romp around in hanzhong.

I don't see the rationale of how it would be better for him to attack and fail. If you analyse the siege battles during that time, you can obviously see how many advantages a defender had when he was holed up behind the walls. Note that I'm not talking about the notion of total, passive defence and not caring for counter-offensive but rather, I'm saying that with proper measures, defending strategic passes in Han Zhong wouldn't be an impossibility even when the enemies outnumbered you (remember why Liu Bei wanted to have Han Zhong in the first place?). When the right opportunities come along, you could then launch a counter-offensive.

Exar Kun wrote:When you're a small state who can't afford to be caught off guard by a lrage force,it's better to not give that larger force time to attack,make them react rather you you be the one reacting.


This rule certainly doesn't apply to all. If you're a small state, IMO, it's not rational and feasible to launch repeated expeditions (some like the siege of Chen Cang were not even well planned) over a short period of time and draining your nation's resources. Note that you've got less cards to play with when you're a small nation and focusing on the military would only mean diverting a substantial part of the nation's workforce from other sectors to the military. In the long run, this is nothing but suicidal. Also, instead of launching all that campaigns, isn't it easier in military sense to just focus on not being caught off guard?

Yes, Zhuge Liang succeeded in making Wei reacted and Jiang Wei amplified their reactions. In the end, Shu could not handle all that reactions and attentions it received.
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Unread postby TheGreatNads » Mon Aug 11, 2003 9:46 pm

Exar Kun wrote:Zhuge's campaign were productive however.Zhuge,save for Jie Ting,never lost a battle.


The second campaign doesn't count as a loss? He was constantly outsmarted by an enemy he heavily outnumbered, and men he sent up ladders were all burned to death by Hao Zhao. Oh yeah, and this supposed surprise attack of Kongming's was already expected by Cao Zhen. How does that not count as a loss? Kongming lead the attack himself, didn't he?
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Unread postby Exar Kun » Mon Aug 11, 2003 11:21 pm

(God,I'm being owned left and right...maybe I can just wear him down)

That would be in Guo Huai's SGZ biography. Same thing was mentioned in Sima Yi's Jin Shu biography.


I'll have to take your word on that I guess.Could you spare me any details for educational purposes?

Why not? It was part of the official records, like SGZ, Han Shu, Hou Han Shu, etc. Compared to that, Xi Zuo Ci's HJCQ could have contained a personal bias. Furthermore, like I mentioned for a great many times in 3k.net, some of the details could be justified by certain statements in SGZ. I shall not elaborate here.


As long as it can be verified.It's just that some of those 'historical' records seem to try to make a mockery out of certain events.Wei Lue for example.

There were quite a lot of Wei generals mentioned in Wei's SGZ section but they were not widely known since KOEI didn't even have them in the game series and LGZ didn't bother to portray them as big shots. I couldn't recall where it stated that Wang Shuang was a fierce fighter but even if he did, we're talking about a huge kingdom like Wei losing only a good fighter? What's the big deal? Compared to Zhang He, Wang Shuang, IMO was less valuable.


I'm not saying Wang Shuang is as good as Zhang he was.And I'm sure Wei had generals by the bushel.But Zhang He was one of the few remaining from the first early warlord period,which was arguably the fiercest time of fighting there was.He was held in great esteem.Wei couldn't afford to keep losing men like that.And I'm not trying to make it seem that killing Zhang He is like winning a campaign,it's just to show that he didn't walk away empty handed.

Do you really need to have explicit mentions by the records that people were starving before you can infer that the series of campaigns drained Shu's resources? What do you mean by the food being there for the army to use? I don't suppose that Shu was a land whereby if one wants an apple, he can simply find an apple tree and pluck one from it?


Exactly what do you mean by 'drain resources'.Obviously food is being taken out of the storehouses and sent to the front.However,I have never seen any record that Shu's people starved during the times Zhuge Liang went north.The people loved Zhuge very much,I doubt they would love a man who's making them eat grass rather than grain.Also,if they really were disgruntled through lack of food then they'd have rebelled.You can count on that.

How did you infer that Wei have always been bothering the quiet party? In any case, Wei had always been bothering Wu and not Shu. That's why Wei Yan came up with the sneak attack plan on Chang An prior the first expedition of Zhuge Liang since he knew that Chang An was not heavily defended during then.


I never said they were always bothering the quiet party.They did not let states become complacent due to a lack of fighting.And Wei's pre-occupation with Wei doesn't mean it's time to sit it out and wait.This part is addressed in the next statement.
As for Wei Yan,just one note.It's a good thing they never used that plan.As far as I'm concerned it had failure written all over it.

That's true. No chance of peace during then. However, do you suppose that there is only one solution for that? Launching expeditions after expeditions every year to no avail? Zhuge Liang could have focused more on civil issues (agriculture, trade, technology, education, etc.) so as to strengthen Shu. Remember that Liu Bei suffered a big defeat at Yi Ling during 222 A.D. and Zhuge Liang's first expedition started in 228 A.D. Do you think Shu had time to recover? That's not to mention that Zhuge Liang went on the southern expedition during 225 A.D.


Zhuge wasn't getting any younger,neither were those who could be considerd 'heroes of their realm'.From Zhuge's point of view,and a correct interpretation it is,if he dies,the dream of winning the north dies with him.Zhuge was always happy to step aside as long as a capable military mind was availible.Who's to lead the fight if he's dead?No one.Shu will turn in on itself.And considering they are outmassed several times by Wei,it would only be a matter of thime before they are conquered by Wei,or by Wu.


I don't see the rationale of how it would be better for him to attack and fail. If you analyse the siege battles during that time, you can obviously see how many advantages a defender had when he was holed up behind the walls. Note that I'm not talking about the notion of total, passive defence and not caring for counter-offensive but rather, I'm saying that with proper measures, defending strategic passes in Han Zhong wouldn't be an impossibility even when the enemies outnumbered you (remember why Liu Bei wanted to have Han Zhong in the first place?). When the right opportunities come along, you could then launch a counter-offensive.


Waiting for a counter offensive is akin to madness.Retreat from sieges usually means that the attacker is running out of food or simply sees no means of winning the siege.Shu will then be left with have to launch a counter-offensive against an invasion level Wei army.Key word:invasion level.They will likely be outnumbered by a goodly amount.Plus,they will now have to fight tooth and nail all the way up into liangzhou.
rather than being afforded the initial surprise and gains of attacking a large state they now have to face the same defenses they faced before except now they have to grapple all the way to the defenses in the first places.And also,when they arrive those same defenses will now hold more troops.Additionally,the slow crawl up will also give Wei time to bring in even more troops and to smother the Shu army.

This rule certainly doesn't apply to all. If you're a small state, IMO, it's not rational and feasible to launch repeated expeditions (some like the siege of Chen Cang were not even well planned) over a short period of time and draining your nation's resources. Note that you've got less cards to play with when you're a small nation and focusing on the military would only mean diverting a substantial part of the nation's workforce from other sectors to the military. In the long run, this is nothing but suicidal. Also, instead of launching all that campaigns, isn't it easier in military sense to just focus on not being caught off guard?

Yes, Zhuge Liang succeeded in making Wei reacted and Jiang Wei amplified their reactions. In the end, Shu could not handle all that reactions and attentions it received.


It is rational if you take into consideration the factor of time.More time = less proven resources to use.The only way new generals can be proven is on the battlefield and since they aren't going to war anyway they might have the next Han Xin distributing supplies.They end up stuck with only the proven generals who are largely those who were young during the war days.The proven veterans are now dead.Sonn Zhuge will die.What then?
On the subject of just trying not to be caught offguard there are other factors to take into account.Degradation of government.With an indifferent sovereign on the throne who's only interest is having fun you don't really have anywhere to go but down.It took an extraordinary individual to keep Shu afloat(Kongming) who was helped by the fact that the late Emperor gave his trust to him but after that?You just have the indifferent sovereign.

Jiang Wei's failure shows just how useless it would have been to stay of defense.As I said before staying of defense means less proven commanders much less those who are capable of melding several forces together to form united forces.Jiang Wei had only one command.He was trapped by the presence of two opposing armies,each independent of the other.He was on defense,meaning he has to stay stationary.Once one army continues to menace him,the other is given free reign to maneuvre.
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Unread postby Zhilong » Mon Aug 11, 2003 11:29 pm

ZL's first campaign was a credible attempt imo but the Jieting setback ruined it. I'm not sure i would agree with so many subsequent campaigns but as ZL remarked, he feared that after his death that there would be no one to march on Wei. Jiang Wan's invasion plan with the river plan was not watertight (no pun intended) as evident by opposition from Jiang Wei & Fei Yi. Fei Yi later said to Jiang Wei that there was no one able to lead a campaign and it was best to wait for someone able to come along. And we all know what happened when it came to Jiang Wei.

After his first campaign his troop numbers tended to indicate that his goal was no longer to conquer Wei in one swoop but the taking of the intermediate areas to increase the size of Shu & serve as a future base. In line with this he did manage to incorporate Wudu & Yinping but he did not manage to accomplish much more after this before he died.

Granted all campaigns will take up resources but what if they just wait and no one able is left to lead the campaigns? Moreover, the longer they wait they less legitimacy they have and it is blatantly ovbious that no matter how much they develop their economy etc they will never overwhelm Wei in this respect. Shu = 1 province, Wei = 9. (I am not saying this means that they should not develop it at all but just weighing up the disadvantages of being an inward looking state against a formiddable enemy.)

Another risk of waiting is the fall of Wu. If Wu falls they are screwed. Thus, Wei can wait but Shu cannot.

In light of this i would support some campaigns by ZL but probably not all of them.
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