Former Congressman Charlie Wilson Dead

His efforts in Afghanistan inspired the Tom Hanks movie
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 10, 2010 5:35 PM CST

Charlie Wilson, the former congressman from Texas whose funding of Afghanistan's resistance to the Soviet Union was chronicled in the movie Charlie Wilson's War, died today at 76. Wilson represented the 2nd district in east Texas in the House from 1973 to 1996 and was known in Washington as "Good Time Charlie" for his reputation as a hard-drinking womanizer.

Tom Hanks portrayed Wilson in the 2007 movie about his efforts to arm Afghani mujahedeen during Afghanistan's war against the Soviet Union in the 1980s. Wilson, a member of the House Appropriations Committee, helped secure money for weapons. "Charlie was perfect as a congressman, perfect as a state representative, perfect as a state senator," said his former chief of staff. "He was a perfect reflection of the people he represented." (More Charlie Wilson's War stories.)

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