“Today’s jihadist movement in the Sunni Muslim world has its roots in Afghanistan in the resistance to the massive Soviet invasion launched in December [24] 1979. Elements of the Soviet Fortieth Army marched in after the Soviet intelligence service, the KGB, had the country’s communist dictator assassinated for failing to deliver a stable Marxist government. In response, President Jimmy Carter ordered the CIA to support the mujahedin resistance, which President Ronald Reagan backed on an even vaster scale in the 1980s. At the time, few thought the mujahedin could win: the CIA station chief in Kabul predicted the Soviet forces would smash them in less than six months. Instead the resistance smashed the Fortieth Army.”

 – Bruce Riedel, The Search for Al Qaeda, Page 62