„Count me not your friend but the enemy of your enemies.“

Source: Lyonesse Trilogy (1983-1989), The Green Pearl (1985), Chapter 8, section 3 (p. 480)

Adopted from Wikiquote. Last update June 3, 2021. History
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Jack Vance193
American mystery and speculative fiction writer 1916 - 2013

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„Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.“

—  Niccolo Machiavelli Italian politician, Writer and Author 1469 - 1527

Machiavelli commented on the relative ease of gaining favor from friends and enemies in Chapter 20 of The Prince, quoted above. However, this particular wording comes from a line spoken by Michael Corleone in The Godfather Part II (1974), written by Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola:
My father taught me many things here. He taught me in this room. He taught me: keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.
Misattributed

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„Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.“

—  Sun Tzu ancient Chinese military general, strategist and philosopher from the Zhou Dynasty -543 - -495 BC

This has often been attributed to Sun Tzu and sometimes to Petrarch. It comes most directly from a line spoken by Michael Corleone in The Godfather Part II (1974), written by Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola:
My father taught me many things here. He taught me in this room. He taught me: keep your friends close but your enemies closer.
Niccolò Machiavelli, who is also sometimes credited, wrote on the subject in The Prince:
It is easier for the prince to make friends of those men who were contented under the former government, and are therefore his enemies, than of those who, being discontented with it, were favourable to him and encouraged him to seize it.
Misattributed

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„Seems to me the only difference between your friends and your enemies is how long they stand around chatting before they shoot you.“

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