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Download Charlie Wilson’s War: The Extraordinary Story of How the Wildest Man in Congress and a Rogue CIA Agent Changed the History of Our Times Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Charlie Wilson’s War: The Extraordinary Story of How the Wildest Man in Congress and a Rogue CIA Agent Changed the History of Our Times Audiobook, by George Crile Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,478 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: George Crile Narrator: Christopher Lane Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2007 ISBN: 9781455182398
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Charlie Wilson’s War is the untold story of the last battle of the Cold War and how it fueled the rise of militant Islam. 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 Afghan freedom fighters who continued to fight the Soviet invaders despite overwhelming odds, the congressman became passionate about their cause and procured hundreds of millions of dollars to support the mujahideen. The arms were secretly procured and distributed with the help of an out-of-favor CIA operative, Gust Avrokotos, whose working-class Greek-American background made him an anomaly among the Ivy League world of American spies. Avrakotos handpicked a staff of CIA outcasts to run his operation and, with their help, continually stretched the Agency’s rules to the breaking point.

Moving from the back rooms of the Capitol, to secret chambers at Langley, to arms-dealers conventions, to the Khyber Pass, Charlie Wilson’s War is a detailed and brilliantly reported account of the inside workings of the CIA.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Tom Clancy’s fiction pales in comparison with the amazing, mesmerizing story told by George Crile.”

    Dan Rather, New York Times bestselling author

  • Charlie Wilson’s War is an amazing tale…with a breathtaking cast of characters worthy of a le Carré novel. Only it’s all true. And just as vivid.”

    Ken Auletta, New York Times bestselling author

  • “A vivid narrative…Charlie Wilson’s War is a behind-the-scenes chronicle of a program that is still largely classified…Few people who remember Wilson’s years in Washington would discount even the wildest tales.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Irresistible…Can’t be believed until Crile and his thorough reporting gradually make it clear that yes, it all really happened.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “Crile’s globe-trotting research and adroit writing have produced a vastly entertaining book that outmuscles most spy novels in its quota of sheer thrills and chills.”

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer

  • “Narrator Christopher Lane affects an even tone and pace, allowing the events of the story to carry the listener to the extraordinary highs and sickening lows of the flawed but heroic Wilson. Thankfully, Lane takes it easy on the accents and shines brightest when allowing a tinge of cynicism in his delivery. Winner of the Audie Award.”

    AudioFile

  • “Absorbing, thoroughly detailed…A range of colorful characters…figure in this engrossing account.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Put the Tom Clancy clones back on the shelf; this covert-ops chronicle is practically impossible to put down.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “An engaging, well-written, newsworthy study of practical politics and its sometimes unlikely players and one with plenty of implications.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A Washington Post Bestseller
  • A Los Angeles Times Bestseller
  • Winner of the 2004 Audie Award for Best Narration

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 George | 2/19/2014

    " Should be called " How a pair of retards fucked up the world " A Douchebag congressman who tellingly apent his childhood looking for german planes in Texas and designed his own quasi military dress shirts , and a socially retarded greek american death suad specialist , bond over their love of pussy and killing communists and inadvertantly create Al Quaida , because they didn't like think shit through properly. Retards! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeremy | 1/31/2014

    " Fascinating. Couldn't believe that what Wilson did was possible. Learned a LOT about the 80's war in Afganistan and was intrigued to see how that contributed to the state of the world in Sep 2001. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tt | 1/27/2014

    " Crile writes in an easy readable manner. The story is borderline unbelieveable and yet too true. The book provides great background information on the current situation in Pakistan and Afghanistan. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alan Keelan | 1/7/2014

    " Shortly after I finished reading this book Sen Charlie Wilson (D-Tex) died. I thought it was just coincidence, but who knows... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nicole Marble | 1/1/2014

    " Facts, lots of facts. An amazing look at our government, the CIA and Afghanistan in the 1980's - and the connection to our military action there today. It reads like a Clancy book - but this is the real stuff. If you are in a big hurry, just read the afterward. Supurb! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Johnpaul | 12/31/2013

    " shows us all how the government works, for some. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Charley | 12/20/2013

    " A bit long and windy in some parts, but this is an incredibly compelling story that provides many insights into the U.S.'s current conflict in Afghanistan. An incredible display the use and abuse of power. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Troy | 12/16/2013

    " Read the book first! The movie is alright but read the book first. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jack E. Burns II | 12/3/2013

    " Extremely thorough. Eye-opening insights into the government of our country and other countries true inner workings and how the grease is applied to the political machines.....and what one lady's party-throwing-skills can do to change the world in a dramatic way. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Abigail | 6/7/2013

    " I really enjoyed this book. It was, of course, much better than the film (which I also enjoyed). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Geoklass | 6/3/2013

    " How an unknown congressman from texas brought down the USSR. An unbelievable story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michael Kallan | 5/21/2013

    " Amazing story of how the U.S. funded the Afghan mujahideen during the 1980's after the (1979) Soviet invasion. The book reads like fiction. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kim | 5/11/2013

    " this one has to go back on the shelf... can't get into it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alejandro | 8/16/2012

    " Amazing, more than often I keep finding other connection of how Nicaragua was used as a chess piece in a US operative. Hmmm, History tends to reveal itself more and more. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Heather | 7/7/2012

    " I really liked the facts and knowing the background and policies behind the afghan war and the cold war years. Some of the language is definitely not enjoyable, but other than that it is very intriguing and enlightening. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tordle | 5/12/2012

    " Loved this! I just saw the movie and it's amazing! I didn't ever imagine Tom Hanks as CW, but he totally pulled it off! This is a true story about a true hero! The best part is that CW is a rebel with a cause! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shanamcm | 11/9/2011

    " I enjoyed the book, and found the characters almost hard to believe, which made it fascinating. I think I was really in awe of the 1980's US government and comparing that to how things work today. It was a different time back then. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Promise Ceasar | 10/9/2011

    " Helped explain a lot, the movie is pretty accurate, the book is way more detailed though. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kris Repuszka | 6/12/2011

    " great book but too long. lost interest 3/4 of the way through "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Charlotte | 11/2/2010

    " One of my favorite books ever! A bit of a history lesson as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marlene | 5/19/2010

    " This purports to be a true story, and I believe it is in its essentials, but it's difficult to believe that government operates in such a slipshod way and that millions of taxpayer dollars can be committed to a cause with so little Congressional oversight. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bryan Sager | 1/30/2010

    " Another good book that was also better than the movie. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Angela | 11/29/2009

    " I couldn't make my way all the way through the book, but it was interesting and I learned a lot. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Will Craighead | 6/16/2009

    " Brilliantly told "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brad Herridge | 4/16/2009

    " Great book. I actually listened to it and found it very enjoyable, historically fasinating and politically neutral. There were no punches thrown at Dempcrates or Republicans. I found it very rewarding to listen to. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Aly Baiter | 8/25/2008

    " great read...fantastic exploration of almost fantastic proportions...why truth is greater than fiction. A great illumination to the current middle east- well researched, with a novel flow. absolutely fabulous. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Danielle Thacker | 3/7/2008

    " I've been working on this book for years now. Yes, embarrassing but true. It's the first book that I'm trying to read before I see the movie. "

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About the Author

George Crile (1945–2006) was an award-winning documentary filmmaker and veteran producer for 60 Minutes and 60 Minutes II. Charlie Wilson’s War began as a 60 Minutes profile in 1988.

About the Narrator

Christopher Lane is an award-winning actor, director, and narrator. He is a three-time winner of the prestigious Audie Award for Best Narration and recipient of ten AudioFile Earphones Awards.