WASHINGTON (CNN) – Former Rep. Charlie Wilson, who led Congress into supporting a covert plan to help Afghan militias fight the Soviet Union in the 1980s, said Thursday that he would support President Obama in whatever he decides to do in Afghanistan.
Wilson, whose playboy lifestyle and efforts in Afghanistan inspired a book and a movie, called "Charlie Wilson's War," said the worst mistake made was not helping to rebuild the war-torn country after the Russians left.
"That was a terrible mistake," Wilson said during a speech on Thursday night in Scranton, Pennsylvania. "Had we spent that $20 million or $30 million for the entirety of the problem, we wouldn't be spending $20 or $30 million an hour today."
Wilson said in an interview with the Scranton Times Tribune on Tuesday that it is "best to make a calculated withdrawal" and said that if he were in Obama's position, he would "probably shut it down, rather than lose a lot of soldiers and treasure."
But during his speech, he backed off those comments and said he will support Obama in his decision on whether or not to send more troops to Afghanistan.
"It is a terrible decision for the president," Wilson said. He added, "We're going to wait for the president to make a decision and I'm going to try to support that decision."