Sunday, October 05, 2008

The threat to women in Afghanistan

In my last post I mentioned the death of Lieutenant Colonel Malalai Kakar, who the Taliban managed to kill a week ago. While it's perhaps not surprising that a police woman has been killed in an unstable region, it's just one of many symptoms of the Taliban regaining power in the region.

I hardly think I have to mention the fact that in the neighboring Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto was killed while campaigning. A murder which is generally considered done by radical Muslims.

However, inside Afghanistan, matters are much worse.

The Taliban is officially no longer in power, but they still have political influence. And where they can't influence things politically, they use violence. This was the case with Lieutenant Colonel Malalai Kakar, but unfortunately that's not an isolated event.

Three years ago, the British newspaper The Independent interviewed five women who had challenged the Taliban, among them Malalai Kakar. Among those, the fate of Malalai Kakar was unfortunately not unique. As a followup article explains

Of five prominent women interviewed three years ago by The Independent for an article on post-Taliban female emancipation, three, including Ms Kakar, are dead and a fourth has had to flee after narrowly escaping assassination in an ambush in which her husband was killed.

In other words, the Taliban is systematically enforcing their totalitarian regime through the use of violence, even if they are not officially in power. Even though a multitude of countries have troops in the country, they are unable to keep the Taliban from enforcing their horrible rules on others. In this, the occupation must be considered a failure, and a big one at that. And it's not only the women paying the price (the pro-western district governor Rozi Khan was killed in a gun-battle some weeks ago), but they are the ones that pays the heaviest price if the Taliban get back in power. They are the ones considered sub-human because of their gender, not the men.

As things stand now, the future of the Afghan women looks bleak.

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Blogger The Ridger, FCD said...

But, but ... how can this be? Did our president's wife say helping Afghan women was a top priority?

October 05, 2008 11:40 PM  

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