2,738. 9/19/2001

On September 19, 2001, a team of CIA officers was dispatched from Washington to “northeastern Afghanistan where the Northern Alliance continued to hold out against the Taliban. Before they left they met with [Counterterrorist Center head] Cofer Black at Agency headquarters for their final marching orders. They were unambiguous. Black told them, ‘I want bin Laden’s head shipped back in a box filled with dry ice. I want to be able to show bin Laden’s head to the president [Bush].’ This appears to have been the first time in decades that a CIA officer had been directly ordered to kill an enemy of the United States.”

 – Peter Bergen, The Longest War, Pages 56-57

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