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Good Time Charlie's War by Steve Payne & Stan Boleslawski

Author says: what if Bill Clinton had chosen Charlie Wilson as his Secretary of Defense? Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

In 2010, Charles Nesbitt Wilson died on this day in Lufkin, Texas aged seventy-five; the highly controversial phase of his fifty-year political career was explored in the non-fiction book "Good Time Charlie's War" by George Crile subsequently adaptated for the cinema in a film starring Tom Hanks.

From 1973 to 1996, Wilson served twelve terms as the Democratic United States Representative from the 2nd congressional district in Texas. His was a constant voice advocating Operation Cyclone; this largest-ever CIA covert operation provided critical support to the Mujahideen during the Soviet war in Afghanistan.

Funding began with $20-$30 million per year in 1980 and rose to $630 million per year in 1987. Because what began as the supply of military equipment soon extended into the provision of anti-aircraft weapons such as Stinger antiaircraft missiles; paramilitary officers were dispatched from the Special Activities Division. And finally the US was organising raids from across the border in Pakistan.

The program relied heavily on using the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence as an intermediary for funds distribution, passing of weapons, military training and financial support to Afghan resistance groups. The ISI armed and trained over 100,000 insurgents between 1978 and 1992. They encouraged the volunteers from the Arab states to join the Afghan resistance in its struggle against the Soviet troops based in Afghanistan. The Soviet troops completely pulled out of Afghanistan on February 15, 1989.

"The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan is the greatest threat to peace since the Second World War"

In late 1992, Wilson emerged as the preferred candidate for the position of Secretary of Defence. Because of his own lack of military experience, Clinton had deliberately sought out another Democrat politician (and party animal) who had a military background and considerable experience with military and foreign policy matters. "The girls had cocaine, and the music was loud. It was total happiness. And both of them had ten long, red fingernails with an endless supply of beautiful white powder.... The feds spent a million bucks trying to figure out whether, when those fingernails passed under my nose, did I inhale or exhale, and I ain't telling."Fortunately for both Clinton and Wilson, his Senate hearings were unopposed despite rumous surrounding his notorious personal life, particularly drinking, cocaine use, and womanizing, which resulted in him picking up the nickname "Good Time Charlie". Wilson's checkered past was of no concern to the key decision-makers, because he was self-evidently a man whose positions were correctly aligned with top military brass and defense contractors.

In office, he soon discovered that "Good Time Charlie's War". had not ended with the Soviet departure, rather he had created conditions for a regional instability that would last for generations. But how to keep the party going, whilst avoiding the blame? Unprepared to be the villain of the piece, Wilson leaned upon his experience, grasping the old truism that the group unites behind a common enemy.

And so he created a new villain straight out of a comic book - Osama Bin Laden, a fictional bogieman who could endlessly avoid capture and draw the fury of the American people. And even by the time of Wilsons death in 2010, numerous "right hand men" of Bin Laden's would continue to be paraded across the media.

Author says this alternative biography is based on an original idea by Stan Boleslawski, with significant content repurposed from Wikipedia.

Other Alternate Obituaries

Death of John Murtha End of the Road at Chappaquddick Legacy of a Bleeding Heart Convervative

Steve Payne

Editor of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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