The phrase that launched a thousand op-ed pieces.
On the surface it sounds true and completely unobjectionable. But Frederick P. Hitz has a startling statement in his recent book, The Great Game: The Myth and Reality of Espionage:
Both [Dewey Clarridge and Robert Gates] acknowledged that they knew of no significant recruitment of Soviet spies during their long careers. The spies were all walk-ins, or volunteers.
So we do not have to get better at recruitment, we have to learn how to do it in the first place. Further, we have to do it against an adversary even more dangerous than the KGB. In the Cold War neither side was eager to kill opposition agents. AQ, on the other hand, would revel in beheading a CIA officer on video.
All in all, the next time i see that line in an op-ed piece, i think i'll skip to the comics. Clearly the author is just blowing hot air.