“I don't want you pencil-neck mother fucker's to fuck yourselves up trying to do this shit.”

C.T. Fletcher

“I would not expect to be able to sit with you in 12 months from now and tell you that we are at victory or near victory or even close to victory. What I would say is I would hope to be able to convince you we have an organization that is now focused and moving in the right direction with the right culture, so that you could then believe that this is the kind of effort that could be successful.”

General Stanley A. McChrystal, U.S. Army, ret.
My Share of the Task: A Memoir

“After Vietnam and the stinging Washington scandals of the 1970's many [CIA] case officers feared local political entanglements, especially in violent covert operations. Many of them had vowed after Vietnam that there would be no more CIA-lead quixotic quests for Third World hearts and minds. In Afghanistan, they said, the CIA would stick to its legal authority: mules, money, and mortars. For many in the CIA the Afghan Jihad was about killing Soviets first and last. [CIA officer Howard] Hart even suggested that the Pakistanis put a bounty out on Soviet soldiers: 10,000 rupees for a Special Forces soldier, 5,000 for a conscript, and double in either case if the prisoners were brought in alive. This was payback for Soviet aid to the North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong, and for many CIA officers who had served in that war it was personal.”

Steve Coll
Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001