Former Democratic Congressman Charlie Wilson of Texas died this week. Charlie Wilson was the hard partying, hard working Democratic Congressman who worked behind the scenes to find the funding for the CIA's assistance to the Afghanistan freedom fighters during the Soviet occupation. It was the largest covert war in American history and helped to bring down the Soviet Union.
The movie "Charlie Wilson's War" added to the legend of "Good Time Charlie." But, there was more fact than legend in his story. Wilson was colorful character, the likes that are few and far between in today's Congress. Few of any, of today's members of Congress would take the risk Charlie Wilson took to do what he thought was right, regardless his perceived personal flaws.
The CIA gave Charlie Wilson the "Honored Colleague Award" for his efforts in the covert war in Afghanistan. Wilson was the first civilian to receive that award.
Indeed, we all owe Charlie Wilson thanks. When America needed a risk taking Congressman to work behind the scenes and wheel and deal to fund the cold war against communism, Wilson was there. RIP Charlie Wilson and thank you.