Good Time Charlie's
War by Steve Payne & Stan
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.
says this alternative biography is based on an original idea by Stan
Boleslawski, with significant content repurposed from
Other Alternate Obituaries
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