“And then we fucked up the endgame”

charlie wilson's war

This is one time when it’s better to read the book before watching the movie.  Crile’s gripping account of how Charlie Wilson came to champion the Afghan cause and then proceed to escalate and bankroll the CIA’s secret war against the Soviets in Afghanistan is absorbing and I found it very difficult to put the book down.  More significantly, he gives us an important glimpse of how power operates in the world of kings, generals, bureaucrats and legislators, and one cannot help but wonder how truly ironic and ugly the “democratic process” in America really is.  What was kinda disappointing was the way Joanne Herring and Gust Avrakotos suddenly disappeared towards the end of the narrative, with Avrakotos’ increasing unimportance rendered with an understated tragic irony.  This detailed account of what was later to become blowback with a vengeance is a highly-recommended read.

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