RT Book, Whole DB /z-wcorg/ DS http://worldcat.org ID 48942498 LA English T1 Charlie Wilson's war : the extraordinary story of the largest covert operation in history A1 Crile, George., PB Atlantic Monthly Press PP New York YR 2003 SN 0871138549 9780871138545 0871138514 9780871138514 AB In a little over a decade, two events have transformed the world: the collapse of the Soviet Union and the rise of militant Islam. This book is the story behind the last battle of the Cold War and how it fueled the new jihad. The author tells how Charlie Wilson, a maverick congressman from east Texas, conspired with a rogue CIA operative to launch the biggest, meanest, and most successful covert operation in the Agency's history. In the early 1980s, after a Houston socialite turned Wilson's attention to the ragged band of Afghan 'freedom fighters' who continued, despite overwhelming odds, to fight the Soviet invaders, the congressman became passionate about their cause. At a time when Ronald Reagan faced a total cutoff of funding for the Contra war, Wilson, who sat on the all-powerful House Appropriations Committee, managed to procure hundreds of millions of dollars to support the mujahideen. The arms were secretly procured and distributed with the aid of an out-of-favor CIA operative, Gust Avrakotos, whose working-class Greek-American background made him an anomaly among the Ivy League world of American spies. Nicknamed 'Dr. Dirty,' the blue-collar James Bond was an aggressive agent who served on the front lines of the Cold War where he learned how to stretch the Agency's rules to the breaking point.