Perhaps this isn't a cunning strategy, but the failure to form one.
Quick-witted and cunning, Tyrion might just be the most dangerous man in the Seven Kingdoms, fathoms ahead of everyone.
With Schiff we get the true woman, who was brilliant, cunning, and could out-Machiavelli any male ruler.
The GOP did not lead the frantic town halls of August, because the party is not that organized or cunning.
Cersei is cunning, focused, and power-hungry—not unlike her father and brothers.
The most cunning,” was the reply, “can always contrive to appear the most simple.
His next move proved that his cunning was of an exceptional order.
He was working against cunning men, and had to be as cunning as they.
The cunning Medea observed what was passing in the young man's mind.
He is as full of cunning as an ape, and, I warrant me, would act his part marvellously.
early 14c., "learned, skillful," present participle of cunnen "to know" (see can (v.1)). Sense of "skillfully deceitful" is probably late 14c. As a noun from c.1300. Related: Cunningly.
Old English 1st & 3rd person singular present indicative of cunnan "know, have power to, be able," (also "to have carnal knowledge"), from Proto-Germanic *kunnan "to be mentally able, to have learned" (cf. Old Norse kenna "to know, make known," Old Frisian kanna "to recognize, admit," German kennen "to know," Gothic kannjan "to make known"), from PIE root *gno- (see know).
Absorbing the third sense of "to know," that of "to know how to do something" (in addition to "to know as a fact" and "to be acquainted with" something or someone). An Old English preterite-present verb, its original past participle, couth, survived only in its negation (see uncouth), but cf. could. The present participle has spun off as cunning.
Old English canne "a cup, container," from Proto-Germanic *kanna (cf. Old Saxon, Old Norse, Swedish kanna, Middle Dutch kanne, Dutch kan, Old High German channa, German Kanne). Probably an early borrowing from Late Latin canna "container, vessel," from Latin canna "reed," also "reed pipe, small boat;" but the sense evolution is difficult.
Modern "air-tight vessel of tinned iron" is from 1867 (can-opener is from 1877). Slang meaning "toilet" is c.1900, said to be a shortening of piss-can. Meaning "buttocks" is from c.1910.