"Just because you have been beaten by Wellington, you think he is a good general. I tell you that Wellington is a bad general, the English are bad troops and this affair is no more than eating breakfast."
— Napoleon Bonaparte to one of his marshals just before the Battle of Waterloo
"Months earlier, when Siétamo was taken, the general commanding the Government troops had said gaily: 'Tomorrow we'll have coffee in Huesca.' It turned out that he was mistaken. There had been bloody attacks, but the town did not fall, and 'Tomorrow we'll have coffee in Huesca' became a standing joke throughout the army. If I ever go back to Spain I shall make a point of having a cup of coffee in Huesca."
The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions.
— Robert Wilson Lynd
"We've won just enough territory to bury our dead."
— Red Army joke upon the conclusion of the Winter War, which was predicted to last two weeks.
All we have to do is kick in the door, and the whole rotten structure will come crashing down.
— Adolf Hitler, shortly before the commencement of Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union.