Colin Powell

Colin Powell quotes

Quotes by and about Colin Powell

(Continued from his main entry on the site.)

Powell: "I [always] saw a great merit in the way my parents lived their life, and I never wished to displease them. I always wanted them to be proud of me. The worst days of my life were ... when I did something that disappointed my mother and my father."

Powell: "I was not a terribly good student. I did not read a great deal when I was a youngster. The streets were a greater attraction to me in New York than was the New York Public Library system, or staying in my room reading anything but comic books."

Young Colin Powell

Powell: "[As a child] I read what I was required to read by the public school system of the City of New York, and children's books. But I didn't really become an avid reader until I was an adult. "

Powell: "[My first role model] was sharp, quick, disciplined, organized - qualities then invisible in me. ... I set out to remake myself in [his] mold."

Powell: " The American people [always] make their will known. That will is almost universally a will based on what's right, based on honesty, based on goodness. ... I am as corny as you can be on that subject. But it is the deepest element of my national faith."

[Asked how he as a soldier came to grips with realizing Vietnam was a mistake:]
Powell: "Well, we ... said: 'We will not allow ourselves to be broken. We will not allow ourselves to be abandoned by the people. We will demonstrate our worthiness. We will go back to our traditions. We will go back to our history, we'll gain inspiration from our past.' ... We just went back to basics: structure, discipline, patriotism, pride."

New York Times: "He seems never to have accepted a promotion without making the promoter beg him to take it."

New York Times: "[He was] first drawn to religion for the pomp and the Army for the uniform."