America's Secret War Against the Soviets in Afghanistan

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The borderland between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. The borderland between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. (Copyright: Damon Lynch/Shutterstock)

CIA and National Security Council veteran Bruce Riedel tells the story of America's secret war in Afghanistan and the defeat of the Soviet 40th Red Army in the war that proved to be the final battle of the Cold War. In What We Won: America's Secret War in Afghanistan, 1979-89, he writes of his experiences in the CIA's Operations Center when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan on Christmas Eve 1979, and examines the United States’ response, initiated by Jimmy Carter and accelerated by Ronald Reagan.


Bruce Riedel

Comments [5]

Lance Corey from East Quogue, New York

While I have great respect for Bruce Reidel and his book Pakistan on the Brink, I was nearly knocked out of my chair when he described the Islamists as a "Perversion" of Islam. Nothing could be further from the truth: 14 Centuries of Islamic Scholars, Theologians, and Jurists argue otherwise. I've studied the Middle East for 40+ years and Islam very intensively the past 13 years; most particularly since the 9/11 attack.
I very strongly recommend reading The Legacy of Jihad: Holy War and the Treatment of Non-Muslims edited by Andrew Bostom. 14 Centuries of primary source documents, including eyewitness chroniclers, are readily available to be digested and analyzed. I'm prepared to gift you a copy, 1 of a dozen copies I'll be forwarding to other opinion makers. It is one (1) book I've included in a 17 page bibliography on the subject which I'll be happy to share with you. I believe in studying a subject from 360 degrees. Political Correctness is keeping us from understanding the situation we face. Sun Tzu (author of The Art of War) would readily agree that you will never defeat an enemy if you do not truly understand who they are. It is the height of irresponsibility for us not to learn as much as we can about our adversaries. Never stop learning! And Good Luck.

Aug. 22 2014 02:07 AM

Wasn't Carter's Zbigniew Brezinski the more virulent in his anti-Soviet zeal and the primary supporter of Mudjahadeen?

Jul. 29 2014 12:55 PM

This guy is total bs.

The Soviets went into Afghanistan in order to stop the spread of Islam into their republics. Communist policies were much more progressive then Taliban's, Zia's, etc.

Jul. 29 2014 12:55 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

Take a good look at Afghanistan because that is what America is going to look like in 50 years if we continue down the same path. A country divided into different ethnic blocs led by warlords.

Jul. 29 2014 12:40 PM

And who won?

Jul. 29 2014 11:44 AM

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