He Boshi beilun 何博士備論 "Complete discussions by Erudite He" is a critical biography of generals and military leaders in Chinese history. It was written during the Northern Song period 北宋 (960-1126) by the military academician He Qufei 何去非 (fl. 1082), courtesy name Zhengtong 正通. Of the original 28 chapters, two are missing.
The Beilun is an account of 22 military leaders from the Warring States 戰國 (5th cent.-221 BCE) to the Five Dynasties period 五代 (907-960). It investigates reasons for their success and failure in battle, and seeks to draw general conclusions. The author does not generally advocate war as something good, but it had to be waged according to the circumstances, and whether the actor would be able to profit from it. The right wisdom was therefore more important for the person of a general than bravery. A military leader had to obtain correct information about the enemy, to balance war of attack against war of defence, and had to know when to apply what tactics on the battlefield. This knowledge had not necessarily to come from the commander himself, but he had to rely on able advisors in his staff, similar to a ruler who made use of worthy ministers. The relationship between a ruler and his general was also of great importance for both the survival of the state and victory on the battlefield.