Zbigniew Brzezinski: How Jimmy Carter and I Started the Mujahideen Interview of Zbigniew Brzezinski Le Nouvel Observateur (France), Jan. Myths and the mujahideen That idea originated in with Zbigniew Brzezinski, Jimmy Carter’s national security adviser. But the spread of fundamentalism started long before, at the point when the Arab socialism. The resultwas a Presidential Finding of July , signed by Jimmy Carter, authorizingthe CIA to provide non-lethal aid to the mujahideen.
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C harlie Wilson’s War, starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts, is a hilariously simplistic, enjoyable Hollywood romp through the vicious s struggle between Afghanistan’s US-backed mujahideen guerrillas and the occupying Red Army. On one level, its inanities make Mel Gibson’s Braveheart look like a thoughtful documentary about 13th century Anglo-Scottish relations.
The Wars of Afghanistan – Foreign Policy
But entertainment aside, the film performs a anc function, too, by highlighting crucial issues of current concern. They include the winnability of asymmetric wars, the hhe of military intervention, the rise of al-Qaida and Islamist fundamentalism, and Nato’s present-day campaign in Afghanistan against the Taliban. One of those who played a real-time role in the ultimately successful fight to eject the Soviet Union was Morton Abramowitz.
Over a long career, his interventionist credentials were impeccable – and he knew most of what went on in Afghanistan in the 80s.
Speaking after a screening of the film at the Policy Exchange thinktank in London, Abramowitz offered several factual corrections to the storyline. Wilson, the hard-drinking, womanising Texas congressman played by Hanks, was not the first to urge sending weapons to the Afghan resistance, he said.
That idea originated in with Zbigniew BrzezinskiJimmy Carter’s national security adviser. By his own account, Brzezinski travelled to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan after the Soviet invasion, winning financial and logistical support for an effort to arm the mujahideen.
Myths and the mujahideen | Opinion | The Guardian
Abramowitz said that, contrary to claims made in the film, Mikhail Gorbachev, who became general-secretary of the Soviet communist party indecided to withdraw as early asbelieving the occupation could not be sustained. His decision actually preceded the deployment of the first US-supplied Stinger missiles whose devastating use against Soviet aircraft supposedly broke Russia’s will. The former intelligence chief was also dismissive of the film’s suggestion that Wilson foresaw that anti-American fundamentalists and jihadis from around the Muslim world would move stzrted and exploit the post-withdrawal power vacuum in Afghanistan.
The failure to help rebuild once the Russians left was collective – and its fateful consequences were only understood much later. Ali Jalali, a leading mujahideen fighter who later became Afghanistan’s interior minister under President Hamid Karzai, told the Policy Exchange the commonly held idea that the Soviet retreat in was the moment al-Qaida and the Taliban, inadvertently armed by Washington, carrter into being was mistaken.
But the spread j fundamentalism started long before, at the point when the Arab socialism movements of the s and s failed,” Jalali said. Another little understood factor was Pakistan’s dictator, General Zia ul-Haq, who insisted that all weapons destined for the mujahideen be channelled though his inter-services intelligence agency.
Zia, widely seen now as prime mover in Pakistan’s evolution into an Islamic state, wanted an Afghan government that Islamabad could control. Abramowitz, Guthrie and Paddy Ashdown, the former Bosnia international administrator whose hopes of a top diplomatic role in Afghanistan were recently dashed by Karzai, all suggested the asymmetrical warfare that defeated the Russians could yet defeat Nato forces there.
Only the Afghan people will defeat the Taliban. As Rudyard Kipling had noted in Arithmetic on the Frontierexpensive weaponry and superior education did not guarantee success: The experience of Afghanistan in the 80s and 90s, and today, plus what has happened in Iraq, had reduced his enthusiasm for and confidence in military intervention, Abramowitz said.
To tell you the truth, talk of intervention makes me skittish. Middle East and North Africa comment. Order by newest oldest recommendations.
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