Liu Bei and the Longzhong Plan: a fundamental conflict?

Join the Romance of the Three Kingdoms discussion with our resident Scholars. Topics relating to the novel and history are both welcome. Don't forget to check the Forum Rules before posting.
Kongming’s Archives: Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms Officer Biographies
Three Kingdoms Officer Encyclopedia
Scholars of Shen Zhou Search Tool

Re: Liu Bei and the Longzhong Plan: a fundamental conflict?

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sun Jul 03, 2011 6:12 am

Liu bei should accept Jing in the first chance when liu biao presented it to him. The rich resources and a powerful navy would have to stall cao cao. Sun quan will not have the right to the Jing if he had accepted it.

Even if Liu Biao did offer it (which some historians doubt and seems extremely odd), accepting it would have probably plunged Jing into civil war. Liu Qi would have revolted, anti Liu Bei faction at court would have pushed Liu Zong into revolt, Liu Bei would have been up against stronger armies and possible assassination. Wei and Wu would have sought to exploit such events
User avatar
Dong Zhou
Posts: 17418
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2005 12:32 pm
Location: "Now we must die. May Your Majesty maintain yourself"

Re: Liu Bei and the Longzhong Plan: a fundamental conflict?

Unread postby tiger of hanshui » Thu Jul 21, 2011 1:58 pm

imo the biggest bugbear in Longzhong Plan was down to the fact that Jingzhou is vital gem for every warlord during that time. It's location will definitely ensure that gaining total control of that land would amount to having a massive advantage to taking over the other two factions. And especially so for Liu Bei because the nature of Jingzhou's location would mean that having the entire land can give him a much better strategic high ground compared to other two factions. On on hand, Sun Wu wouldn't try anything funny because their terrain advantage would be non-existent under this situation. Cao Cao would definitely have it the worst because Liu Bei would end up having the option of going pincer on his territories so as to speak upon gaining Yizhou. Of course due to the mentioned reason on Sun Wu's front, Sun Quan and Liu Bei ended up at each others throats as time wears on post Chibi. In fact the renewing of the alliance post Yiling was down to necessity to survive. Nothing more, nothing less.

Simply put, Kongming's plan was definitely something that's perfect in paper, but as the common saying goes, man propose, heaven dispose. One thing that he has failed in taking into account was down to the unpredictability of the chaotic era. As per the geographical situation stated above, Sun Quan wouldn't be so dumb to give up Jingzhou without a fight. Ditto for Cao Cao as well. Kongming was basing his vision on the best case scenario where somehow or another, Cao Cao and Sun Quan's hands would be tied at least until Liu Bei has gotten Yizhou. Main problem though was down to the fact that before he could truly 100% stabilize the entire area post Hanzhong, Liu Bei's portion of Jingzhou ended back up in Sun Quan's hands again.

And there's also a hidden problem which Liu Bei has caused himself. Upon taking down Yizhou, he made the mistake of allowing his troops to plunder anything and everything in the storehouses or whatever you all want to call them. This caused an immediate crisis in the economy where having no choice but to heed Liu Ba's advice in creating a stop gap measure in minting a new coin currency. Of course things have stabilized after some time, but then again Yiling has to happen and quite obviously, the double whammy of getting owned by the latter case defeat and the unneeded stupidity for the former has crippled Shu Han's potential for the proverbial dream comeback. There's a reason why Shu Han was regarded as the weakest of the Three Kingdoms. If not for the terrain of Hanzhong playing buffer against Wei while the entire Sun Wu was still fearful of any potential screw ups somewhere down the line, Shu Han would be gone long ago.

On an interesting side note, upon Sun Quan's request in returning Jingzhou post Yizhou campaign, Liu Bei just said that only by taking Liangzhou will he be able to return the so-called loaned land. Quite obviously Sun Quan knew he's been had. Let's just think of things this way. By gaining Hanzhong, it's true that Liu Bei could go and take over Liangzhou. But due to the fact that the Hanzhong campaign has gone on for some time even unto the extent where Cao Cao has to throw in the proverbial towel to conclude the end, without any doubt stabilizing his kingdom would take Liu Bei quite a bit of time. To be more accurate, it's very likely that bulk of Liu Bei's losses would have been in the round 1 bout in the form of Mt Dingjun, but it doesn't matter anyway. Now back to the main topic. Of course we all know how big Liangzhou actually was not to mention the overall value of the area especially when we end up hearing the common saying, "Valorous warriors hail from Longxi and able advisers come from Guanzhong." Longxi in this case was actually part of Liangzhou in case you guys don't know. That plus Longxi has always been that blindside factor leading into Chengdu that Liu Bei couldn't ignore.

Okay I think I've gone on long enough for old grandfather theories. Anyone having additional or alternative views, please feel free to air it. 8-)
tiger of hanshui
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 6:51 pm


Return to Sanguo Yanyi Symposium

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 10 guests

Copyright © 2002–2008 Kongming’s Archives. All Rights Reserved