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Put the Tom Clancy clones back on the shelf; this covert-ops chronicle is practically impossible to put down. No thriller writer would dare invent Wilson, a six-feet-four-inch Texas congressman,liberal on social issues but rabidly anti-Communist, a boozer, engaged in serial affairs and wheeler-dealer of consummate skill. Only slightly less improbable is Gust Avrakotos, a blue-collar Greek immigrant who joined the CIA when it was an Ivy League preserve and fought his elitist colleagues almost as ruthlessly as he fought the Soviet Union in the Cold War's waning years. In conjunction with President Zia of Pakistan in the 1980s, Wilson and Arvakotos circumvented most of the barriers to arming the Afghan mujahideen-distance, money, law and internal CIA politics, to name a few. Their coups included getting Israeli-modified Chinese weapons smuggled into Afghanistan, with the Pakistanis turning a blind eye,and the cultivation of a genius-level weapons designer and strategist named Michael Vickers, a key architect of the guerrilla campaign that left the Soviet army stymied. The ultimate weapon in Afghanistan was the portable Stinger anti-aircraft missile, which eliminated the Soviet's Mi-24 helicopter gunships and began the train of events leading to the collapse of the U.S.S.R. and its satellites. A triumph of ruthless ability over scruples, this story has dominated recent history in the form of blowback: many of the men armed by the CIA became the Taliban's murderous enforcers and Osama bin Laden's protectors. Yet superb writing from Crile, a 60 Minutes producer, will keep even the most vigorous critics of this Contra-like affair reading to the end.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A longtime Sixty Minutes producer investigates the expenditure of what eventually amounted to $1 billion a year to support Afghanistan's Mujahideen in their battle against the Soviets.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Oh! what a tangled web we weave. When first we practise to deceive! A great book. Very well told. So much more detail than the movie.Published 20 days ago by Mr Robert Baker
Story of what one determined man can do made for some entertaining reading. Non-fiction that reads like a novel.Published 1 month ago by Carlene
Hard to believe all this was going on almost entirely without the knowledge of the Congress or the American people. Read morePublished 1 month ago by KERRY C - UTAH
an absolute whirlwind. It was an amazing backstory for why the Berlin wall came down.Published 1 month ago by RANDY
Excellent book! I'm sure I'll read it again soon. I'd recommend it for anyone interested in the history of Afghanistan.Published 1 month ago by Dave B.
An incredible and yet seemingly accurate tale of our misadventures in Afghanistan, and the totally incredible part played by a typical sleaze-bag Texan congressman named Charlie... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Hannibal
Interesting read. Many things the general public does not know. Having worked with the Foreign Military Program I found it to be interesting.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer