Afghanistan: another brutal series of reminders

In a previous post, I reminded readers that the situation in Afghanistan has far from resolved.

If there is still any doubt lingering in your mind that the people of Afghanistan are not free from being terrorized, brutalized and dehumanized – there’s plenty in the news to set you straight. If the news is this awful, imagine what is going unreported.

Read this story of a twelve-year old girl – a survivor of gang rape. Her family has said that they will commit suicide if justice is not served.

Before you jump to conclusions: the family is not talking about persecution of their daughter for “honor”. They’re talking about wanting real justice for their precious, traumatized child – and their family.

Rape is becoming more and more of a problem in Afghanistan. Only recently, a three year old girl was kidnapped and raped. The assailants of countless women, girls and boys are roaming the country without punishment.

The infrastructure necessary for effective implementation of the law simply isn’t there.
Human rights workers are calling this the result of the war that’s been ravaging Afghanistan. Ironically and disgustingly, one of the justifications for war has been to “save Afghanistan’s women.”

Nice work. Not. I didn’t buy it in 2001, and don’t begin to buy it now. Especially not now. Not when mass violation is par for the course and death is called an “accident”.

I could go on – for this story has had me unable to focus on much all day. However, once again the important thing is to take action. Here’s what you can do to help:

* Educate yourself: Human Rights Watch covers the situation in Afghanistan regularly. For example, see this letter, in which Human Rights Watch urges the international community to put human rights at the forefront of conversations with Afghanistan’s government. 

* See this list of non-governmental organizations needing your support. This page is asking you to donate to the organizations, but I’m urging you to do what YOU can, even if you simply read more to stay informed. You can also sign up for mailing lists and blog about the work these organizations are doing.

* I’ve posted this before, but it’s worth reposting regularly: Al-Azhar University’s paper on how women and children must be protected under Islam. For those who don’t know, Al-Azhar is one of the oldest operating universities in the world, and the epicenter of Islamic scholarship.

(Feel free to forward this paper to George W. Bush and Hamid Karzai. If you’re going to be an Islamic republic or you’re just prone to bombing them, consider the inherent rights you’re going to either uphold or brutally violate, eh?)

* Spend some time searching for information about and work being done in Afghanistan. You’ll find things like RAWA and the Afghan Women’s Mission.

“None but a noble man treats women in an honorable manner. And none but an ignoble treats women disgracefully.”

The Prophet Muhammad (At-Tirmithy)


3 thoughts on “Afghanistan: another brutal series of reminders

  1. I’ve spent YEARS purposefully trying to desensitize myself to this kind of thing. I am a soldier. I know there will come a day when I must act to prevent it. There will come a day when I must stand up in the face of it to protect the innocent without letting emotion cause me to loose my focus on the mission before me…
    I’ve read book after book, personal account after personal account, watched interview after interview…and yet, today what you’ve written and the article you linked to…haunts me.

  2. Thanks for posting. The situation for women in Afghanistan was horrible, and America didn’t make it much better..

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