They Will Welcome Us With Flowers

And on Day 1, they did, indeed, welcome the invaders with flowers, but the invaders came not as liberators but drunk with hubris, so on Day 2, the people revolted.

今 燕 虐 其 民, 王 往 而 征 之, 民 以为 将 拯 己 于 水火 之中 也, 箪食壶浆 以 迎 王 师。 若 杀 其 父兄, 系 累 其 子弟, 毁 其 宗庙, 迁 其 重 器, 如之 何其 可 也! 天下 固 畏 齐 之 强 也, 今 又 倍 地 而 不行 仁政, 是 动 天下 之兵 也。[司马光 (2012-11-23). 资治通鉴(1) (Kindle Locations 446-448). Kindle Edition.]

Just now the ruler of Yen was repressing his people. Your Majesty went and punished him. Assuming you were about to deliver them from disaster, the people welcomed your army with food. But you killed their fathers and elder brothers, imprisoned their sons and younger brothers, pulled down the state ancestral temple, and took the ceremonial vessels back to Ch’i. How can this be! The whole world fears Ch’i’s power. Ch’i’s having doubled its territory and still not instituted good governance is what sets in motion the world’s troops. [My rephrasing of Legge’s more literal translation in Ch. 12, 172.]


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