The Chu Han war took place after the fall of the Qin Dynasty and before the founding of the Han Dynasty by Emperor Gaozu Liu Bang. Among them, “Chu” refers to the Western Chu, which was then the capital of Pengcheng (Xuzhou, Jiangsu); “Han” refers to the place south of the Qinling Mountains in Shaanxi Province, where Xiang Yu, known as the “overlord of Western Chu”, was enfeoffed to Liu Bang. At that time, it was called “Hanzhong”. Therefore, Liu Bang is called “king of Han Dynasty”. The Chu Han war was actually a war between Liu Bang and Xiang Yu from 206 BC to 202 BC.
The background of the outbreak of the “Chu Han war”
The general background of the outbreak of the “Chu Han war” was the collapse of the Qin Dynasty. Liu Bang and Xiang Yu both rose in the anti Qin struggle. After the fall of the Qin Dynasty, the Chu and Han Dynasties fought for four years. Finally, Liu Bang won and established the Western Han Dynasty.
In the background of the outbreak of the war, I think one thing is very important, that is, the “battle of the giant deer”. Julu is the Pingxiang County of Hebei Province today, which belonged to the state of Zhao at that time. In this place, Xiang Yu fought a battle with the two main forces of the Qin army. “Breaking the boat” is handed down from the first battle.
What was the situation of the two sides in this battle? I personally estimate that the army led by Xiang Yu is about 50000 people, and the Qin army has two very important corps, one is Zhang Han, the other is the “Great Wall corps”.
At the beginning of the peasant uprising in the late Qin Dynasty, Zhang Han’s task was to build the mausoleum of the first emperor of Qin Dynasty. After the war broke out, Zhang Han was employed. Zhang Han was a general of the Qin army who was able to recruit and fight well. He first defeated an army of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang who invaded the central Shaanxi plain. The general of one of the troops is Zhou Wen. At that time, Zhou Wen’s army was known as one million. After defeating Zhou Wen, Zhang Han fought out of Hangu pass and defeated the armies of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang, resulting in the killing of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang. Later, he defeated Xiang Liang group, the most powerful anti Qin force in the Jiangnan area at that time, which was led by Xiang Yu’s uncle Xiang Liang. Later, Xiang Liang was defeated and killed.
After defeating the armies of Chen Sheng, Wu Guang and Xiang Liang, Zhang Han defeated the armies of the state of Wei and the state of Qi, and the last thing to be solved was the army of the state of Zhao, Julu. If Zhang Han defeated the Zhao army again, it would mean that the anti Qin forces in the whole world were almost wiped out by Zhang Han. Therefore, the “battle of giant deer” was very important. Zhang Han led 200000 troops at that time.
After the first emperor of Qin unified the six countries, he sent Meng Tian to build the Great Wall. Meng Tian led the main force of 300000 Qin troops to garrison the Great Wall. This army is very strong, and we call it the “Great Wall corps”. Meng Tian, the commander of this regiment, was killed in the conspiracy of Zhao Gao, Li Si and Hu Hai. Later, he was commanded by a deputy leader named Wang Li. At that time, the general situation of the army of the Qin Dynasty was as follows: 300000 elite troops were stationed in the Great Wall, and 500000 troops were stationed in South Vietnam, which were the two main forces of the Qin Dynasty. 300000 in the north and 500000 in the south. However, the 500000 troops in the South were almost useless, because the uprising of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang cut off the connection between Xianyang, the capital of the Qin Dynasty, and the southern legion, so the 500000 troops in the South failed to return to the Central Plains to fight.
At this time, how many troops is Xiang Yu? According to my estimation, because his uncle Xiang Liang just lost the war, the number of Xiang Yu’s army is about 50000, so the “battle of giant deer” is a rare case in China’s military history. One side of the war has a total force of 300000 to 400000, while the other side, led by Xiang Yu, has a total force of about 50000. However, Xiang Yu won this battle, and he fought beautifully.
“Historical records” records that he “broke the kettle and steamer”, which means that he smashed the pot; “All boats sink”, which means the boat is sunk. Then, let every soldier bring dry food for three days. If he fails to win in these three days, he will have no food to eat, and he will die without food. This practice is just in line with the strategy of Sun Tzu, one of China’s most famous military books.
Sun Tzu’s art of war talks about a truth, that is, we ordinary people often say, “die and be reborn”. Xiang Yu pushed his army to a dead end. Therefore, the battle of the giant deer was very hard and straightforward. He first defeated Zhang Han, then attacked Wang Li’s army, which surrounded Julu, and finally completely destroyed Wang Li’s army. Wang Li was also killed. This is a very important background for the outbreak of the Chu Han war.
After the victory of the “battle of giant deer”, Xiang Yu became famous. Xiang Yu was originally unknown. After the uprising of Chen Sheng and Wu Guang, he was just one of thousands of anti Qin forces at that time. Among the many anti Qin forces, Xiang Yu was not famous, but the “battle of giant deer” made Xiang Yu famous at one stroke.
The significance of the “battle of giant deer” in Chinese history is that this battle not only decided the demise of the Qin Dynasty, but also was the most critical step for Xiang Yu to enter the historical stage. After this battle, all the princes in the world were convinced by Xiang Yu. Since then, the vassal army was under the unified leadership of Xiang Yu, who became the general leader of the vassal coalition army, unifying 400000 troops.
After the “battle of giant deer”, Xiang Yu and Liu Bang entered the customs. Liu Bang was two months earlier than Xiang Yu. Liu Bang was in October, 2006 BC, and Xiang Yu was in December, 2006 BC. The reason for this is that Xiang Yu is fighting a hard battle, and “gnawing bones” with the main force of the Qin army, while Liu Bang is “drinking soup” by the way. Xiang Yu wiped out all the main forces of the Qin army, so Liu Bang didn’t meet the main forces of the Qin army and could enter the pass smoothly.
Before entering the customs, Xiang Yu and Liu Bang belonged to the state of Chu. At that time, they also established a descendant of the king of Chu, Xiong Xin, as the king of Chu. At that time, Xiong Xin had an agreement with Liu Bang and Xiang Yu that “the first to enter the pass is Wang Zhi”, that is, Whoever enters the Hangu pass first will be the king of the pass.
Obviously, the king of Guanzhong should be Liu Bang’s. A very important reason for the outbreak of the “Chu Han war” is that Liu Bang entered the central Shaanxi plain two months earlier than Xiang Yu. According to reason, he should be the king of the central Shaanxi plain and perform the things agreed in advance. But at that time, when the treaty was signed, the two people were on an equal footing, but at this time, Xiang Yu developed because of the “battle of the giant deer”. He was the general leader of the 400000 princes’ coalition army and the “male number one”; Liu Bangcai has 100000 troops, which is at best the “number two man”. In this case, can Liu Bang still be the king of central Shaanxi? Politics doesn’t talk about right and wrong, only about strength and strength. Who is just to be emperor, Liu Bang and Xiang Yu? I can’t tell. Between Liu and Xiang, there is no right or wrong in the struggle between these two political groups. Therefore, people who often read history know that politics has no right or wrong. Politics is only strong or weak. Whoever is strong will be king, and whoever is weak will be grandson. There is nothing to say.
The same is true of economy. There are many similarities between politics and economy. Whoever has strong strength is the boss, regardless of whether it is a multinational company or not.
The same is true of today’s world politics. We are not satisfied with the United States. We think the United States is too overbearing, but it is arrogant. What can you do? Because he is strong, he has done a lot of things. We can say that he is unjust, but there is nothing you can do.
The political structure of the world today, like the “Chu Han war” in those days, only stresses strength, not right and wrong. Therefore, we should make our country stronger because the world political structure is the same as history. Why should we read a little history? Because history is separated from reality, only by reading history can we understand today. On the contrary, you understand today, and then read history, you will understand a lot of things.
Therefore, between Liu and Xiang, it is an objective fact that Xiang is strong and Liu is weak. Xiang Yu has 400000 troops, 400000 to 100000.
Xiang Yu won more with less in the “battle of giant deer”, but the war of winning more with less is an abnormal situation, with many accidental factors. It is normal to win more and win less, unless a martial arts master like Jet Li plays against several. But at that time, in the era of cold weapons, there were 400000 people to 100000 people. It is certain that Xiang Yu can destroy Liu Bang as long as he takes a shot. This is an objective fact. Therefore, after entering Hangu pass, the contradiction between Liu and Xiang escalated.
This contradiction intensified badly, which was the direct reason for the outbreak of the “Chu Han war”. So after entering Hangu pass, the two families had a competition.
Xiang Yu was powerful. He enfevered the world and assigned it to 18 princes. He called himself the “overlord of Western Chu” and Liu Bang the king of Han Dynasty. At that time, the fiefs given to Liu Bang were Ba County in the East and Shu County in the west of Sichuan today.
Liu Bang was very unhappy and wanted to play with Xiang Yu. However, after Xiao He’s advice, Liu Bang is still very knowledgeable. He wants to play with Xiang Yu for 100000 yuan. He can’t play with others, so he has to admit it. So, when you can’t fight others, you have to accept your fate.
But Liu Bang was still very smart at that time. He thought of a way – bribery. Now the word “bribery” is too common. In fact, before the “Chu Han war”, there was the word “bribery”, and there was a record of “bribery” in Chinese history. The first person who “offered Bribes” was Zhang Liang. Zhang Liang gave Xiang Bo a large number of gold, silver and jewelry that Liu Bang gave him. Then, Liu Bang also sent a lot of things to Xiang Bo to bribe Xiang Bo. The result of bribery is that Xiang Bo runs to Xiang Yu to intercede.
In fact, Xiang Yu made the biggest mistake. He didn’t know who his enemy was. After entering Hangu pass, his enemy was Liu Bang.
Xiang Yu is too confused!
After Xiangbo received the gift and spoke for Liu Bang, Xiang Yu confused and assigned the whole Shaanxi south of the Qinling Mountains to Liu Bang. It used to be Ba County and Shu County, but now it has three counties with Han Dong county, and then it establishes its capital in Nanzhen. In this way, it is a curse for Liu and Xiang to compete for hegemony.
Liu Bang was very unconvinced. It was supposed that he should be the king of Guanzhong. Finally, because his strength was inferior to Xiang Yu, he was taken to Hanzhong by Xiang Yu, and he had no choice. In addition to the fact that Zhang Han was in Shaanxi just now, there were Sima Xin and Dong Yi in Shaanxi. These three Qin generals who surrendered to Xiang Yu occupied the whole central Shaanxi plain, and Xiang Yu named them King Yong, King Sai and King Zhai respectively. Therefore, Shaanxi has been called “the land of Shaanxi” since ancient times.
Why is it called “Sanqin”? Because it is the place of enfeoffment of three Qin Dynasty generals. Until today, there is a publishing house specialized in publishing ancient books in Shaanxi called “Sanqin Publishing House”. This “Sanqin” was named after the enfeoffment of Xiang Yu at that time.
Xiang Yu himself asked for nine counties. When the first emperor of Qin unified the country, there were 36 counties, and finally 41 counties. Xiang Yu himself asked for 9, and built the capital in Xuzhou.
When Xiang Yu left, he saw that the Xianyang palace of the Qin Dynasty was too beautiful, but he didn’t want to stay in Guanzhong to build the capital, so he set fire to it. According to the records of the historian, the Xianyang palace in the Qin Dynasty burned for three months before it was completely burned.
Why is Xiang Yu unwilling to build the capital Guanzhong? He has a very funny idea, that is, if a person is famous and has power, if he doesn’t go back to his hometown, it’s like wearing a new suit at night, and no one can see it.
This is what Xiang Yu said. He thought it was too depressing. He wanted to wear new clothes and go back to his hometown to show the people in his hometown that Xiang Yu is beautiful and developed today. Therefore, Xiang Yu led his people back to Xuzhou, Jiangsu Province, which was called Pengcheng in ancient times. There is also a very large department store in Xuzhou today, called Pengcheng building. In addition, there is a horse stage in Xuzhou today, which is also a relic left by Xiang Yu in those years. In this way, the world will be peaceful.
At this time, Liu Bang has been looking for opportunities to win over his lost Guanzhong. Moreover, Liu Bang has greater ambition. He doesn’t want to be the king of Sichuan in that place of Sichuan. He wants to be the emperor and the whole country and the whole world to be surnamed Liu. Therefore, in this context, the “Chu Han war” inevitably broke out.
This is a big background of the outbreak of the “Chu Han war”. The “battle of giant deer” made Xiang Yu’s strength expand rapidly and became the overlord of the world. Liu Bang didn’t win the king of Guanzhong that he deserved, but Liu Bang’s purpose was not only to win the king of Guanzhong, but also to win the world. In this way, the dispute between Liu and Xiang is inevitable.
The course of the “Chu Han war”
Xiang Yu made a big mistake in enfeoffment. When he enfeoffed, he had a standard, which is easy to understand from today’s point of view. That is, he drew a line with people, and all those who followed him to participate in the “battle of the giant deer” and follow him into Hangu pass were granted Marquis; Those who did not fight the “battle of the giant deer” with him and did not enter the customs with him were not granted marquis.
Normally, the Marquis was granted after the triumph, but Xiang Yu’s Marquis was granted at the most dangerous time. If it was not granted properly, someone might rebel.
Let’s interject here. After Liu Bang became emperor, one day in the palace, he saw the generals outside talking in groups of three or five. Liu Bang asked Zhang Liang, “what are the ministers talking about?” Zhang Liang said, “they are all discussing rebellion.” Liu Bang was startled and thought to himself, I have just become the emperor, why do the generals want to rebel?
Zhang Liang said, “they have been fighting with you for so many years, waiting for the official seal. If you don’t seal it, they will rebel.” Liu Bang said, “this official has to be rewarded for his merits. Now I can’t figure out who has done the most. But I can’t wait to be sealed after calculating the merits. What should I do?”
Zhang Liang gave him a move and said, “think about it, is there such a person who has made great contributions? First, you hate him most for his meritorious service; second, you hate him most; third, everyone who hates him knows whether you can find such a person?”
Liu Bang said, “yes, this man is called Yongchi. He followed me to start the army, and then betrayed me, almost bringing down my whole army; later, he took refuge in me, because he had meritorious service, I never killed him.” Zhang Liang said, “well, take this Yongchi as a model and seal it. As long as you seal it, the military will be stable. Because Yongchi has meritorious deeds and should be sealed, and it is the person you hate most. At the same time, no one knows that you hate Yongchi. As long as you seal this person, others won’t worry.”
Sure enough, the next day, after Liu Bang ordered Yongchi to be appointed as the Marquis of Shifang, everyone was relieved. Other soldiers thought, if even the people Liu Bang hated most were sealed, we didn’t offend the emperor, could we not be sealed? So the morale of the army settled down. This is Zhang Liang’s plot for Liu Bang.
But when Xiang Yu was enfeoffed, no one offered a plan to Xiang Yu, so there was a problem when Xiang Yu was enfeoffed.
Someone tossed and turned out to be a man from Shandong, which is the place of Qi. As we all know, a famous thing happened in the history of Qi. The Tian family seized the territory of the state of Qi, so the Tian family later became the royal family of the state of Qi in the late Warring States period. There was a great man named Tian Rong in the royal family, but he did not participate in the “battle of giant deer” and did not follow Xiang Yu into the customs. Therefore, Tian Rong was not sealed, and Xiang Yu did not seal him, but sealed three kings of Qin there.
As soon as Tian Rong was angry, he killed the sealed king of Qi and became king himself. In this way, Tian Rong was the first to rebel after Xiang Yu’s enfeoffment. Tian Rong not only rebelled, but also wrote a letter to Liu Bang saying, “you should be the king of Guanzhong. Now that I have rebelled, you should hurry up and cooperate with each other.”.
This is silly. After Liu Bang got the letter, he sent someone to send it to Xiang Yu. Liu Bang did this not to set fire to himself, but to “set fire to others”. Taking advantage of Tian Rong’s rebellion in Shandong, Liu Bang built plank roads in the south of the Qinling Mountains and occupied the Guanzhong of Shaanxi Province. This means that Tian Rong rebelled in the East and Liu Bang rebelled in the west at the same time.
Of the two, Tian Rong was the first to rebel and Liu Bang was the second. However, Liu Bang was Xiang Yu’s bigger opponent, bigger enemy and main enemy.
What about Tian Rong? Tian Rong did not have the courage to annex the world. At most, he was a king of Shandong. But Liu Bang was very smart. He gave Tian Rong’s letter to Xiang Yu and added, “I just want to be my king in the central Shaanxi plain. If I occupy Shaanxi, I’ll be fine. I don’t want anything else.”. In this way, Xiang Yu’s army entered Qidi and went to Shandong. As soon as Xiang Yu arrived to deal with Tian Rong, Liu Bang’s opportunity came. Liu Bang left Hangu pass from Shaanxi Province. When he saw the princes of Xiang Yufeng, he wrote to him and said, “either surrender to me or I will destroy you”. These people were very afraid of Liu Bang, because Xiang Yu was the eldest and Liu Bang was the second, so these people all took refuge in Liu Bang. Liu Bang took 560000 people to Pengcheng and occupied the capital of Western Chu.
At this time, Xiang Yu calmed Tian Rong’s rebellion in Shandong and was trapped in the Shandong battlefield. Liu Bang copied Xiang Yu’s hometown and occupied Pengcheng, leading to the outbreak of the “Chu Han war”. The beginning of the “Chu Han war” was the “Pengcheng war”. The war broke out in May of the second year of Han Dynasty. Xiang Yu didn’t let Liu Bang be the king of the central Shaanxi plain, but Liu Bang acted even harder, and he occupied the capital of Xiang Yu.
Liu Bang came to Pengcheng badly. He has two purposes: first, to destroy Xiang Yu; Second, pick up your family members. These relatives include his wife Lu, the later empress Lu; His son Liu Ying, later emperor Huidi of Han Dynasty; His daughter, later Princess Lu Yuan; His father Tai Gong, second brother and an illegitimate son. Before he got married, Liu Bang had an eldest son named Liu Fei. These families were 200 miles away from Pengcheng District in Peixian county. But after arriving in Pengcheng, Liu Bang forgot to pick up his family.
Liu Bang entered Xianyang, walked into the palace of the first emperor of Qin, and as soon as he lay down on the “Ximengsi” bed of the first emperor of Qin, he fell asleep comfortably. He had never slept in such a beautiful bed, and he didn’t want to get down when lying on it. Looking at the palace of the first emperor of Qin, there were so many beautiful women.
As you have read Hongmen banquet, fan Zeng once analyzed Xiang Yu and said, “when Peigong lived in Shandong, he was greedy for wealth and goods, and he was so beautiful.”. These two sentences say that Liu Bang has two characteristics: first, he is greedy for money; Second, lecherous. After entering Xianyang, he wanted to take these things as his own, but a more powerful Xiang Yu came. He watched Xiang Yu take away all the treasures and beauties in the Qin palace. He got nothing and choked his stomach. It’s great to go to Pengcheng this time. Xiang Yu went to war, but the beauty and treasure were there. Liu Bangle was happy, so he didn’t care to pick up his family.
But before he could pick it up, Xiang Yu came back. For the first time, Xiang Yu led 30000 troops and Liu Bang 560000 troops. Xiang Yu bypassed the eastern and northern parts of Pengcheng, and then sent heavy troops to the west of Pengcheng, which is today the west of Xuzhou, Jiangsu, and Xiao County, Anhui, 60 miles away from Xuzhou. In Xiao County, Xiang Yu used 30000 cavalry to raid Liu Bang’s 560000 troops from morning to noon, and finally Liu Bang’s 560000 troops scattered. Hundreds of thousands of people were killed, hundreds of thousands of people fell into the river and drowned while running for their lives, and hundreds of thousands of people escaped without a trace. Liu Bang was surrounded by Xiang Yu’s army. But at this time, a sandstorm came, blowing away Xiang Yu’s army. Liu Bang took the opportunity to escape and ran in a mess. This battle was the outbreak of the “Chu Han war”.
After the battle, Liu Bang passed through Shangqiu, Kaifeng and Zhengzhou from Xuzhou to the West and retreated to Xingyang in Henan Province, where he organized an effective defense. Because Liu Bang knew Henan and knew that Xingyang was the dividing line between the eastern Henan plain and the western Henan hills and mountains. To the east of Xingyang, there is a flat plain; To the west of Xingyang, there are hills and mountains. In Xingyang, Liu Bang confronted Xiang Yu for 28 months. In these 28 months, Liu Bang fought with Xiang Yu. Liu Bang was defeated repeatedly, and he escaped from Xingyang in embarrassment several times.
The first time he escaped from Xingyang was because he asked a senior general named Jixin (described when reading Hongmen banquet) to put on his own clothes. He also arrested 2000 ordinary people in Xingyang. As long as they were women, not men, they were asked to put on Han Army clothes, and pulled a fake Liu bang out of the car to cheat surrender. Xiang Yu’s army originally surrounded Xingyang. It was said that Liu Bang opened the east gate to surrender. People from the north gate, west gate and South Gate came to the east gate. As a result, Liu Bang took this opportunity to open the west gate and slipped out with only one coachman. Xiang Yu was very angry after catching the fake Liu Bang and burned him to death.
The second time was even worse. His army was almost completely destroyed. He took a man across the Yellow River and ran to Han Xin’s camp. At that time, Han Xin was sleeping. He picked up Han Xin’s amulet and said, this 200000 army belongs to me. Because he was the “big boss”, he grabbed the soldiers of the “small boss”. Han Xin had no choice. He took Han Xin’s 200000 troops and fought with Xiang Yu. This is called repeated defeats, repeated defeats and repeated battles. If you are not the emperor, you will never give up. For 28 months, the two sides have been deadlocked.
Of course, 28 months later, Han Xin, a senior general under Liu Bang, destroyed the states of Wei, Zhao, Yan and Qi north of the Yellow River, and all the vassal states enfeoffed by Xiang Yu north of the Yellow River. This formed a siege of Xiang Yu, so it was meaningless for Xiang Yu to attack Xingyang again. On Xiang Yu’s way back to Anhui from Xingyang, there were only 100000 troops left. Liu Bang led 200000 troops to pursue, but Xiang Yu was beaten by 100000 troops and hid in the city and dared not come out. Liu Bang’s 200000 people could not beat Xiang Yu’s 100000 troops. Finally, Han Xin, Peng Yue, Tsing Bu and other people were mobilized to surround Xiang Yu. Xiang Yu was defeated in cuxia, so the “Chu Han war” went through the outbreak stage, the stalemate stage, and the end, and finally ended with Liu Bang’s victory and Xiang Yu’s failure. This is the general process of the “Chu Han war”.
Enlightenment from “Chu Han war”
What enlightenment does the “Chu Han war” provide us? I want to make a few points:
First, politics is very important. War is a continuation of politics. The reason why Xiang Yu finally failed is that Liu Bang was very mature politically, while Xiang Yu was very naive politically.
Of course, this has something to do with the age of the two men. When they started fighting against Qin at the same time, Xiang Yu was still a 24-year-old boy, while Liu Bang was 48 years old. Liu Bang was 24 years older than Xiang Yu, almost two generations. Therefore, in terms of experience and political experience, Xiang Yu is obviously inferior to Liu Bang.
In academic circles, Liu Bang is generally called three kinds: first, hooligan; Second, scoundrels; Third, ruffian man, that is, little ruffian. There is a reason why everyone calls him this. Liu Bang has many shortcomings, such as swearing. There are three kinds of names for him in the historical records, starting with Peigong, then king of Han, and finally Gaozu. Sima Qian wrote, “Pei Gong scolded”, “Han Wang scolded” and “Gao Zu scolded”, which means that Liu Bang scolded when he opened his mouth, and didn’t open his mouth if he didn’t scold, and even scolded his son-in-law so violently that his son-in-law’s men finally wanted to murder Liu Bang. We have reason to say he is a scoundrel. At a critical moment, can ordinary people kick their sons and daughters down at the door? Many parents love their children better than themselves, but Liu Bang is not so.
For another example, Liu Bang treats his father the same as his daughter. In the 28 month stalemate between Liu and Xiang, Xiang Yu had no choice but to make a big oil pot with a pot of hot water, and then put Liu Bang’s father in a fight. “Throw your father into the pot and cook it if you don’t surrender”. Xiang Yu’s move is not very clever, because the two armies are at war. Why cook someone’s father? Is it a skill to throw someone else’s father into a pot and boil it into broth? This is called rogue behavior. But Xiang Yu didn’t expect that when he, a “little hooligan”, met Liu Bang, an “old hooligan”, he didn’t work. Liu Bang said Xiang Yu’s words in three words.
These three sentences are: “my Weng, if you are a Weng, will want to cook your Weng, please share my share.” My father is your father (this is a rogue language, can my father be the same as your father) you want to cook your father, and I’ll drink soup with you. That is to say, even if he cooked his father, he didn’t care; He doesn’t care if his children die. What does he care about?
The throne of the emperor, which is called a great politician, is the essence of a feudal emperor. After three words, Xiang Yu was stunned. After Xiang Yu was an aristocrat, his grandfather Xiang Yan and his uncle Xiang Liang were all famous generals of the state of Chu. Xiang Yu is an aristocrat who has been fighting for generations, so he won’t “play with hooligans”. After playing once, he can’t win. He didn’t fight. Finally, Xiang Bo played a round game and said, these people are going to win the world. You cook his father and won’t surrender. It’s better to keep his father. What’s the use of coming. Xiang Yu had no choice but to put his father up and down again.
From this point of view, Liu Bang is indeed much more mature politically than Xiang Yu. Therefore, the first important enlightenment left by the “Chu Han war” is that we must have a certain political level and understand politics. If we do not understand politics, there is no way to be an emperor and engage in politics.
One of Xiang Yu’s great shortcomings is that he doesn’t understand politics. An important manifestation of his ignorance of politics is that during the six months from the fall of the Qin Dynasty to May of the second year of the Han Dynasty, Xiang Yu did not even know that his political opponent was Liu Bang.
Everyone is very familiar with Hongmen banquet. In Hongmen banquet, Xiang Yu did not know that Liu Bang was his opponent. Let’s briefly describe the background of “Hongmen banquet”. After Xiang Yu finished the “battle of giant deer”, he led 400000 troops into the central Shaanxi plain, but when he came to Hangu pass, he was blocked by Liu Bang. Liu Bang sent people to block Xiang Yu in the Hangu pass. He wanted to be the king of the central Shaanxi plain. He didn’t want others to occupy his land. As soon as he was angry, Xiang Yu fought in. At this time, Xiang Yu has made a mistake, because Xiang Yu and Liu Bang are two large groups, not ordinary two people. What are the groups talking about? Only interests, not gratitude and resentment. At this time, Xiang Yu did not know that Liu Bang was his opponent. When were the two groups allies? Only when they have the same goals and interests can they join hands. For example, in the current anti-terrorism, the United States should also unite with China, because China and the United States have many common interests in dealing with terrorists, so the two countries can unite. When were Liu and Xiang allies? When the Qin army existed, Liu and Xiang were allies, and their common goal was to destroy Qin. However, once the Qin Dynasty surrendered, the common goal disappeared and the common interests no longer existed. Liu and Xiang became two groups competing for the world. The interests of these two groups are in conflict, which determines the irreconcilability of Liu and Xiang. This is the “Hongmen banquet” we see.
What does “Hongmen banquet” start from? “Before meeting Xiang Yu, Peigong’s left Sima Cao Wushang said to Xiang Yu, ‘Peigong wants to make his son and baby a treasure in the Guanzhong pass’. Xiang Yu was furious and said,’ offer sacrifices to soldiers on a Dan day to break Peigong’s army! ‘”.
As soon as Xiang Yu entered Hangu pass, a man tipped him off. The informant was Cao Wushang. Cao Wushang informs three things: first, Liu Bang wants to be the king of the central Shaanxi plain, which is Liu Bang’s card and his political goal; Second, he wanted to make Ziying, the surrendered son of the Qin Dynasty, the prime minister; Third, he wants to take all the treasures as his own. Do you think these three Xiangyu can promise? After hearing this, Xiang Yu was furious and said, “the next day I had enough to eat and killed Liu Bang!”
In fact, Xiang Yu’s decision to destroy Liu Bang was very correct, but Xiang Yu said it in anger. He didn’t analyze that after the fall of the Qin Dynasty, Liu and Xiang were enemies. It’s natural for me to destroy you, Liu Bang. If I don’t destroy you, you will destroy me in the future. If he understands this truth, how can he be angry? Can the decision made in anger be reliable?
As you know, when Xiang Bo talked to Xiang Yu about his past activity, Xiang Yu revoked his decision to destroy Liu Bang. This decision came and went quickly, because there was no rational analysis, which actually exposed a problem. Xiang Yu didn’t know that Liu Bang was his main enemy. This is also the fundamental reason why Xiang Yu did not kill Liu Bang at the “Hongmen banquet”.
Liu Bang is politically shrewd. When Liu Bang first heard that Xiang Yu was going to destroy him, Liu Bang knew what he was wrong. He exposed his political intentions prematurely, causing Xiang Yu an upcoming devastating military strike. However, Liu Bang then took advantage of Uncle Xiang and “fooled” his uncle and nephew Xiang Yu together, and the “fooled” was very beautiful.
I will just give you an example. As you know, there is a special paragraph in the Hongmen banquet, which is what Liu Bang said when he went to Hongmen to see Xiang Yu, “the minister and the general worked together to attack Qin, the general fought in Hebei, and the minister fought in Henan, but he didn’t want to enter the pass first to break Qin, and the general can be seen here again. Now there are villains’ words, which makes the general and the minister have a gap”. This is the first paragraph Liu Bang said when he saw Xiang Yu at the “Hongmen banquet”. It was so beautiful.
I divide this passage into three paragraphs:
In the first paragraph, “the minister and the general worked together to attack Qin, the general fought in Hebei, and the minister fought in Henan”, which means that I fought side by side with you in the Qin Dynasty, but you fought in Hebei and I fought in Henan. This passage seems to be called nostalgia. When you and I were in Hebei and Henan, we fought side by side. In fact, this is called confusion. Yes, Liu Xiang did join hands to fight against Qin Dynasty, but that was the old emperor at that time. Now, as soon as the Qin Dynasty perished, the two became rivals. Originally, Xiang Yu was confused. Liu Bang’s words made Xiang Yu more confused.
In the second paragraph, “however, I didn’t expect to enter the pass first to break through Qin, and I have to see the general here again”. That is to say, I didn’t expect to enter the pass first and see the general here again. What is it called? This is called flattery. To put it mildly, it is called flattery. And it is the highest level of flattery, that is to say, let the other party unaware, this is the highest level of flattery.
The third sentence, “now there are villains’ words, which make the general and his ministers have a gap” means that now there are villains to sow discord, which makes us have contradictions. Can two people have contradictions like this? For example, I don’t know an audience member. Someone told me that he wanted to murder me. Can I believe it? There is no conflict between us. How could it happen? He said the inevitable contradiction between the two groups as a villain’s accidental provocation, which was very clever.
To sum up, Liu Bang said three things: first, nostalgia; Second, Fengying; Third, turn necessity into chance.
After these three words, Xiang Yu was completely “fooled”. Xiang Yu said a word, revealing that Xiang Yu was absolutely confused, “this Peigong left Sima Cao Wushang said, otherwise, why did he come here?”. It means that this is what your Zuo Sima Wuyang said. If it wasn’t for him, how could I do something to my brother? Listen to what Xiang Yu said? This is repentance, this is an apology. Using Cao Wushang to wash away his responsibility will betray Cao Wushang in a word. Not to mention betraying Cao Wushang, he felt very sorry for Liu Bang, but in fact, Liu Bang was completely a pack of lies, and Xiang Yu was so confused that he couldn’t hear it out and was completely fooled by others.
The following is the very famous eight characters, called “XiangZhuang sword dance, intended to Peigong”. At first, four people drank, including Xiang Yu, Liu Bang, fan Zeng and Zhang Liang. Fan Zeng always raised the Jue to make Xiang Yu decide to kill Liu Bang. Xiang Yu couldn’t have been killed. Fan Zeng had no choice but to find an assassin Xiang Zhuang. When he asked him to go to sword dance, he took this opportunity to kill Liu Bang, so Xiang Zhuang went to sword dance. As soon as Xiang Zhuang went to the sword dance, another person followed him, saying that you were not fun alone, and I would dance with you. Who was that person, Xiang Bo. Xiang Bo was originally a muddle headed man. At this time, he was not muddle headed at all. He found that Xiang Zhuang danced his sword with ill intentions.
“Hongmen banquet” wrote, “Uncle Xiang also drew his sword and danced, often covering Peigong with his body wings, and Zhuang couldn’t attack”, that is to say, uncle Xiang often used his body to protect Liu Bang like the wings of a bird, so that Xiang Zhuang couldn’t kill Liu Bang. “Hongmen banquet” is composed of six people. Liu Bang is so shrewd and old-fashioned that he doesn’t know that “XiangZhuang’s sword dance is intended for Peigong”? Sure, but he can’t help it. This is Liu Bang.
Second, Zhang Liang. Zhang Liang was the most skillful and shrewd man in the “Chu Han war”. He knew more than Liu Bang did, but he didn’t recruit. Fan Zeng is the mastermind. He must know that Xiang Zhuang is an assassin. He also knows that although Xiang Bo is a fool, he also knows. You see, one of the six people doesn’t know. If he knows, he will never let Xiang Zhuang dance his sword. To put it bluntly, “Hongmen banquet” is five sensible people who drink a meal with a stupid person. This is “Hongmen banquet”.
Analyze this situation. How confused Xiang Yu is! Six people were present, five people knew, but Xiang Yu sat there foolishly and didn’t know. Do you think such a person can win the war? Although he is strong for a while, he will fail in the end. Therefore, the first enlightenment of the “Chu Han war” is that we must not commit infantilism in politics, which will inevitably lead to the demise of the whole group.
Therefore, the constitution of the country expressly stipulates that there is an age limit for the president, and the president must be over a certain age. People who are too young are politically naive. Only when they live to a certain age, have more experience, listen to more things, and suffer more losses, can politics be more mature.
Liu Bang is 24 years older than Xiang Yu. Did he live in vain at the age of 24? This 24-year-old Liu Bang has been a bandit, a pavilion commander, and has come and gone with the wanted criminals of the Qin Dynasty. He is politically sophisticated, and Xiang Yu is not his opponent. This is the first lesson brought to us by the Chu Han war. We can’t make mistakes politically. If we make political mistakes, it will lead to a fatal injury to this group. This is the first enlightenment we should remember.
The second Enlightenment from the “Chu Han war” is that the reason for Xiang Yu’s failure is military. Xiang Yu was a militarist who fought bravely. When Xiang Yu committed suicide in the “Chu Han war” on the Wujiang River, Xiang Yu also fought heartily. Before Wujiang committed suicide, there were only 28 people around him. The pursuer behind 28 people was 5000. How did 28 people fight 5000? Xiang Yu first divided his 28 people into four groups, seven people along the way. At the same time, he rushed down from the mountain, and the other party had to fight separately. Because they didn’t know which way was Xiang Yu, 27 people came to the foot of the mountain and merged into three places. Xiang Yu proposed three goals: cutting the general, changing the flag, and seizing the opponent’s military flag. Finally, Xiang Yu achieved all of them.
He was very good at fighting. In the end, he fled to the side of Wujiang River. Wujiang Pavilion commander rowed a boat to let him cross the river. He was going to cross the river. The Wujiang Pavilion commander told him that “although the east of the river is small, the place is thousands of miles, which is enough for the king”. As a result, Xiang Yu laughed after listening to this sentence. Xiang Yu finally laughed and said such a sentence “even the people of Jiangdong still support me, how can I see it?”, Let me be king. How can I face them? This shows that Xiang Yu has a concept of honor and disgrace. Liu Bang has no concept of honor and disgrace. Xiang Yu has a concept of honor and disgrace. He thinks that I took 8000 soldiers across the river and attacked, but no one survived. I came back alive alone, which is a shame. I would rather commit suicide than bear this shame.
Xiang Yu and Liu Bang once fought in Xingyang. Finally, Xiang Yu proposed a way, that is, “Liu Bang, you have to have the courage, you come out, and we will fight one-on-one. Don’t fight between us, and let the people all over the world suffer with us”. Liu Bang said, “I’d rather fight my wits than my strength”. I only fight your wits, and I won’t fight your strength, because Xiang Yu has great strength. According to historical records, Xiang Yu was able to “carry the tripod”. In the Chu Han war, that is, during this period, there were only two people who could “carry the tripod”; One is Xiang Yu, and the other is Liu Chang, the eighth Prince of Liu Bang. Liu Bang is going to fight Xiang Yu. I guess if Xiang Yu catches him, he can break him into meat pies. He is so powerful that Liu Bang can’t beat him. Besides, when Liu Bang fought with him, Liu Bang was in his early 50s. Xiang Yu was only 30 years old. He caught a 50 year old man and fell there. I don’t know what it would look like.
Xiang Yu had a sense of honor and disgrace before he died. What did he do in the end? He said, this horse has been with me for so many years, I don’t want to kill him, give it to you. He gave the Qianlima to the TingChang, then dismounted in turn and fought on foot. Another man killed hundreds of Han soldiers. At last, I saw a man named Lu Matong, who was once his subordinate. Later, he betrayed him and surrendered to Liu Bang. Now he chased Xiang Yu. Xiang Yu said, “I heard that Liu Bang offered a reward of 10000 gold for my head. I’ll make a favor and give you my head.” Then he committed suicide, and Lu Matong really went to cut off Xiang Yu’s head.
When Xiang Yu died at the end of the day, “a BMW gave a gift to TingChang and his head to his old friend”, which has been a good story in Chinese history. In Chinese history, it has always been the case that the king was defeated by the enemy. No one admitted that the loser was a hero, but in Chinese history, only Xiang Yu was admitted to be a failed hero. Therefore, Xiang Yu is a very attractive person. However, although Xiang Yu is good at fighting militarily, there is also a big mistake – strategic mistake. That is, he only cares about fighting with Liu Bang. Wherever Liu Bang goes, he will fight with Liu Bang, regardless of Han Xin’s trouble in the north. A group can make mistakes, but the mistakes made by this group must not be strategic mistakes, otherwise, this group is doomed to failure. Therefore, Xiang Yu’s final failure has a lot to do with his strategic mistakes.
The third reason is personality. The reason why a group finally goes to ruin is largely related to the boss of the group, who decides the fate of the group to a large extent. In other words, the leader of the group cannot make mistakes. As the leader of this group, Xiang Yu has a fatal weakness in his character, which is stubbornness. Xiang Yu began to go too smoothly. At the age of 24, he began to serve as the deputy commander under Xiang Liang. At the age of 24, he was the deputy commander, and at the age of 27, he became the “overlord of Western Chu”. In fact, at the age of 27, he became the president of the country.
According to the constitution, Xiang Yu, who was 27 years old, could never become one. As a result, he became one. At 27, he was too young. Although Xiang Yu was very excellent, how much experience did he have, no matter how smart he was? God of war, God of war, if you don’t have enough political experience, you will inevitably make mistakes in governing. Xiang Yu made a series of mistakes when he enfeoffed the princes and kings. This is all related to his character. We often say, “character determines fate, and details determine success or failure”.
Character determines fate. What kind of character a person is determines his fate. What kind of character is Xiang Yu? Xiang Yu is too confident. If you are too confident, you will inevitably not listen to others’ opinions, which is very normal. For example, Han Xin is another military genius in this period. Han Xin once served as an official under Xiang Yu and made suggestions to Xiang Yu many times. Did Xiang Yu listen? Not once. Han Xin worked under Xiang Yu for many years, but Xiang Yu didn’t find out that he was a military genius. After becoming emperor, Liu Bang once asked his ministers, “tell me, why can I defeat Xiang Yu? Why can I be emperor?” The ministers talked a lot, and Liu Bang said, “nothing is right. The most important thing is that there are three outstanding talents in the world, one is Han Xin, one is Xiao He, and one is Zhang Liang. These three heroes are all for my use, so I defeated Xiang Yu.”
One of the three heroes is Liu Bang’s most reliable military man. Therefore, the Third Enlightenment from the “Chu Han war” is that if a group, especially its leaders and bosses, wants to develop and grow, they must cultivate and advocate a kind of character cultivation. Because people have both good and evil sides, if you don’t limit it, it will expand too much. The final result will inevitably lead to the strategic mistakes of the group. Therefore, another enlightenment brought by Xiang Yu is the cultivation of character, which is very important. Xiang Yu’s disadvantage lies in his stubbornness. There are two reasons for his stubbornness: first, he believes that he is too talented; Second, young people succeed. Because he went too smoothly in his early years, he was too confident in himself. People who were too confident in themselves did not trust others. He will not find his talents, so his talents have been lost one by one.
Although the “Chu Han war” has passed for more than 2000 years, the “Chu Han war” has left us many inspirations: first, politics should not be naive, second, strategy should not make mistakes, and third, character should be cultivated.