ReThinking Charlie Wilson’s War: the Afghan War that Keeps On Taking
According to the Pentagon, the US will spend more on the war in Afghanistan next year than it will in Iraq — about $65 billion for Afghanistan versus $61 billion for Iraq. With no timetable set for withdrawal and the daunting task of building (not REbuilding) a country that is mostly in the Stone Age, largely illiterate, lacking in basic infrastructure like roads and electricity, and wrecked by 30 years of continuous war, military experts are predicting that the total budget for the war in Afghanistan will eventually cost more than the Iraq war.
So I thought it would be interesting to take another look at Charlie Wilson’s War, the true story of America’s clandestine war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan and the philandering Texas congressman who made it happen. But by radicalizing Afghans, arming and training the mujahideen (who would later become Al Qaeda), then abandoning the war-ravaged country as soon as the Soviets had been defeated, the US arguably sowed the seeds of 9/11 and the war we’re still fighting there today — with no end in sight.
Click the pic below to watch my ReThink Review of Charlie Wilson’s War (you’ll be redirected to YouTube due to copyright silliness).
To see me on Cenk Uygur’s XM/Air America show, The Young Turks, discussing Charlie Wilson’s War, the Soviet Afghan War, and why the US is still blowing our occupation of Afghanistan, click here.
If you want to learn why waging a war in Afghanistan is so much more difficult and expensive than it is in Iraq, I’d recommend checking out part three of Brave New Film’s ReThink Afghanistan series, The Cost of War. I worked on this series and conducted many of the interviews used in the videos. The whole series is definitely worth a watch if you want to learn why our continued occupation of Afghanistan is such a bad idea.