by Simon Black
In 221 BC, the 38-year emperor Qin Shi Huang declared total victory against all of his rivals in northern China.
Qin’s ancestors had literally spent centuries invading neighboring states and engaging in complex diplomacy in order to unify China into a single empire.
And Qin Shi Huang was the first Emperor to rule over the unified China that his ancestors had worked so long to build. Talk about having a long-term view.
But instead of celebrating his military success and enjoying peace, Qin decided to expand his empire even further. He focused his attention on the fertile, tropical lands south of the Yangtze River… and sent a massive army of 500,000 men to seize the region.