Lever of Power
Lever of Power challenges the validity of a long held view, one fraught with contemporary geostrategic implications, that Chinese warfare has always been inherently deceptive and stressed maneuver and manipulation whereas Western warfare eschewed the use of deceit and was direct and confrontational.
The theoretical portion analyzes deception's theoretical evolution in China and the West while the remainder of the book, configured as an extensive topical compendium of historical application, examines the pre-modern deceptive practices employed in both cultures. Critical chapters focus on disinformation, feigned retreats, pseudo defectors, false treaties, obscuration, feints, and feigned vulnerability. Relevant passages from the Chinese, Greek, Roman, and Byzantine theoretical military writings are provided throughout. Lever of Power is not just as a contribution to military and intelligence history, but also to the study of the theory and practice of deception itself.
"Lever of Power: Military Deception in China and the West is an extraordinary work that brings together a vast array of primary sources on the subject of military deception with insightful analysis of the content and relevance of each work. Sawyer, an expert on Chinese military and intelligence issues, has translated classic texts and written several books. Lever of Power shows that both China and the West have relied on deception and have employed similar practices in order to deceive. A major difference, however, is that the West lacks the extensive body of theory on deception the Chinese have developed, and that deception 'is not yet as integrated into military thinking and planning as it is in China.'" CIA Studies in Intelligence
"Ralph Sawyer, a leading student of intelligence and strategy, is the world's authority on Chinese theory and practice. The research is phenomenal, and the book summarizes his ideas with power and elegance. No one interested in deception and strategy can afford to miss it." Dr. John Ferris, Authorized Historian, GCHQ