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Sep-24-2012 13:50printcomments

CIA Helped Start Bloody Afghan-Soviet War in 1979

Interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Jimmy Carter's National Security Adviser from Le Nouvel Observateur, Paris - Written by Alexander Cockburn And Jeffrey St. Clair January 15, 1998

Abandoned Soviet military equipment in Kabul.  2007 photograph by Tim King
Abandoned Soviet military equipment in Kabul. 2007 photograph by Tim King

(PARIS) - The following has been translated from French by Bill Blum author of the indispensable, “Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II” and “Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower”

Q: The former director of the CIA, Robert Gates, stated in his memoirs ["From the Shadows"], that American intelligence services began to aid the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention. In this period you were the national security adviser to President Carter. You therefore played a role in this affair. Is that correct?

Brzezinski: Yes. According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.

Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?

Brzezinski: It isn’t quite that. We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.

Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn’t believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don’t regret anything today?

Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic [integrisme], having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

Brzezinski: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

Q: Some stirred-up Moslems? But it has been said and repeated: Islamic fundamentalism represents a world menace today.

Brzezinski: Nonsense! It is said that the West had a global policy in regard to Islam. That is stupid. There isn’t a global Islam. Look at Islam in a rational manner and without demagoguery or emotion. It is the leading religion of the world with 1.5 billion followers. But what is there in common among Saudi Arabian fundamentalism, moderate Morocco, Pakistan militarism, Egyptian pro-Western or Central Asian secularism? Nothing more than what unites the Christian countries.

* There are at least two editions of this magazine; with the perhaps sole exception of the Library of Congress, the version sent to the United States is shorter than the French version, and the Brzezinski interview was not included in the shorter version.

Portions of the books can be read at:

Special thanks to: Anwar Baluch

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Anonymous September 25, 2012 8:54 am (Pacific time)

Paul Ryan, as per Salem-News is a "wart." Oh my, that's funny!

Anonymous September 24, 2012 4:00 pm (Pacific time)

Paul Ryan delivered a blistering speech against President Obama on foreign policy Monday, saying because of the president's policies, the Middle East looks like Tehran during the mob protests on the U.S. embassy in 1979 when Carter was showing his leadership abilities.

 Editor: He is a traitorous wart. The hostage crisis took place because the US and UK stole Iran's oil for years and they put an end to it like any right minded person or entity would do. Nobody even cares what this guy has to say, hell even 'W' refrained from such below the belt attacks, goes to show.

In the same speech Ryan also attacked the president for recently saying in an interview with Univision that reform in Washington is difficult. Specifically he said that "the most important lesson I've learned is that you can't change Washington from the inside. You can only change it from the outside." "Here's the killer, President Obama just the other day said on TV that 'I can't change Washington from the inside,'" Ryan said to boos from the crowd. "Why do we sent presidents to the White House in the first place? Isn't that why we send presidents to Washington? To change Washington?" God bless Paul Ryan and keep him safe.

Editor: Hopefully he doesn't sound quite as bad as he does when you paraphrase him, LOL

Anonymous September 24, 2012 3:24 pm (Pacific time)

Te "left" and the grossly unsuccessful always blame America. So those of you who reside here, why?

Editor: Because we were born here, why do you think?

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