Yep, that sure worked out well! Seriously that was HUGE blunder in hindsite...
Would you rather have the SOVIET UNION still in Afghanistan and eastern Europe?
We got maximum damage and out of it and our guy, Masoud, was assassinated by the Taliban on 9/9 after a long civil war. If we made a mistake, it was not taking an active interest in who won that civil war.
There were a lot of events between the Russian exit and 9/11 which you can’t ignore, including Clinton letting Bin Laden slip out of Africa to Afghanistan after the 1998 embassy bombings, where things could have been different.