Director Oliver Stone in Bill Moyers Journal
BILL MOYERS: What do you mean empire?
OLIVER STONE: We have an empire. We have soldiers in 120 nations all around the world. We have bases north of Afghanistan as you know-- it changes monthly. But Kazakhstan, Kurdistan, Turkmenistan. All these names. We have rings around Soviet Russia, practically. We've built in Latvia. We put NATO back in America has grown huge since the-- especially since the end of the Cold War. We expanded into the East. NATO was never supposed to go East. Do you remember that? NATO was for Western Europe. It was never supposed to go East. Clinton took it to Poland, to Czechoslovakia. Hungary. Bush expanded it. The Russians have a beef with us. And you know, rightly so. We became very big after l989. Bigger than we were. And now we're going to pay the price. The decision by Obama, although it seems minor, 30,000 men. I think it's major. I think this is very ominous. And I don't know that this time, because coming off the recession of where we are now. It doesn't make sense. It's like piling bricks on a donkey. You pile them so high, the donkey is going to collapse.
BILL MOYERS: What would you have said to the President before he made his decision if you could have talked to him?
OLIVER STONE: Don't sell out, man. I mean, the generals got you. You get into the presidency, and I think it's a trap. I would imagine you would know from Lyndon Johnson's experience. And he himself is on his tapes, was talking about the need to win in Vietnam. He-- although in his bones, I think that Lyndon Johnson knew he could not win there. Billions of dollars were spent in Vietnam. Huge waste of money and people got rich off the war. They always do. I always-- when I think of war, I think of money and patriotism. And Obama went out of his way to say that-- to read Vietnam into this was false history. I disagree completely, we always heard the story that the Vietnamese, if we didn't stop them in Vietnam, the dominoes would fall. Thailand would be next. Malaysia and so forth. And they would come, communism would come to the shores of California. And we hear it again and again.
BILL MOYERS: But it is also a fact that Afghanistan is where much of the attack was planned on 9/11. That did change the reality. Don't you think?
OLIVER STONE: No Afghanistan is just like Texas. It's just endless scrub. I don't think it means much. I think Pakistan is where the ballgame is. Afghanistan-- is ridiculous to go to war there. It's like a wasteland. I mean, the people are fighters. These people have been-- they resisted the British, the Russians. They-- I've often felt we are paralleling the Soviet Union. We fought the Soviet Union so hard from l945 on. And when they finally crumbled in 1991, it seems that our fate will follow the same course. I don't know why, it felt like we're locked. If your enemy dies, you may go on for a few years, but somehow we have the same sickness. There's no way people from the mainland of America can go over there and not intrude on these people. Just the fact to even walk into a village with our uniforms and our guns is an intrusion on their way of life. And it's an offense. The way we- if a soldier looks at a woman in a certain way, you know, they take offense. The-- the mentality is quite different than ours. We don't- it's another culture completely. And I don't understand why Obama, who knows about culture and he has an Indonesian background, too, I don't under- I'm shocked that he could look to force. No good will come of using force in a foreign land. Read or Watch more...