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Buying the bones of thousand-miles steed with a stack of gold

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I love to read stories about the Warring States of China, due to its complex political landscape among the seven warring states and constant rivalry which spanned beyond the contest of mere military strategies and technology but also how countries administer policies over their land and recruiting of talents to serve the countries.

During the feudal period in China, one had to be very careful with one words and be cautious of not directing one's comment towards the king who has absolute right over his subjects. Which is why, many officials even when they are close to the king, will give their advice through subtle ways such as telling a story in hope that the king can understand the meaning and moral of the story without incurring the wrath of the ruler but still achieving the intended goal of convincing him. (Sadly, when writing this, reminds me of Singapore)

One such example was during 314BC where a rebellion took place in the state of Yan which resulted in the neighbouring state of Qi taking advantage of the situation by sending its troops and conquering portion of Yan's land.

Yan Zhao Wang (燕昭王) or King Yan Zhao after becoming the king of Yan, suppressed the rebellion. He was determined to recruit talents to revitalize the state of Yan and regain its lost land. But though he expressed such lofty ambitions, not much people took up his offer. This led him to seeking........

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