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Feminism: chat

Is anyone else looking at Afghanistan?

284 replies

PickUpAPepper · 08/07/2021 17:45

I'm unhappy about the abandonment of these women in Afghanistan. Johnson's speech is the usual male-centred self-justificatory claptrap. Freedom, justice, equality and even terrorism - all of it only means anything when men or money are involved. These women deserve freedom from the Taliban, and support to find it.

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BewareTheBeardedDragon · 08/07/2021 19:41

God, that is horrific. What can we do? It is clear that we, and the Americans, really don't give a shit about the rights of the people living there, as long as it doesn't spill out and affect our own countries. It's heartbreaking and rage inducing.


kieronsmum · 08/07/2021 19:52

I have a friend who lives in Kabul. He is terrified. He is very anti-Taliban and is very pro women's rights. He has had death threats already. Yesterday he told me the Taliban will slaughter him when they invade Kabul. i am so worried about him and Afghanistan.


Thevenerableswede · 08/07/2021 21:30

Interesting to see numbers of armed women symbolically taking to the streets there at the moment. After the killing of so many women and girls there already I don’t blame them. Britain is no longer bothered about women and girls anywhere. Cutting aid at the same time.


ThisIsStartingToBoreMe · 08/07/2021 22:11

This is horrible. You can almost see exactly whats coming. Not sure how giving aid will help though :(


Gibbonsgibbonsgibbons · 08/07/2021 22:24

It's terrifying & the lack of political will to prevent the inevitable harm Sad

I went looking to see if the safe house was fundraising & from here it as least looks like they are well funded


BarbarianMum · 08/07/2021 22:37

The truth is various powers have been fighting to bring their versions of civilisation "freedom, justice, equality etc" to Afghanistan for over 200 years and it's always been a total failure. Horrible though it is (and it is, and not only for women) this is a society where the people need to be left to work it out for themselves. Pax Britannia doesnt work here.


BewareTheBeardedDragon · 08/07/2021 23:21

It seems to me that the safe house needs to actually be a route out of the country. Otherwise they are sitting ducks. It's just unbelievably awful - like a nightmare SadSadSad


Rhannion · 08/07/2021 23:25

It’s terrible that after 20 years the situation isn’t really any better for the innocent Afghans, especially girls.


nettie434 · 09/07/2021 01:57

They were discussing this on The World Tonight earlier. The commentator being interviewed said that maintaining the US Pakistan relationship was a far greater priority for the US than Afghanistan.

Neither the Afghan government nor US troops can control the Taliban unless they control their safe havens in Pakistan and the US knows the Pakistani government won't/can't do this.

I feel awful for all the people in Afghanistan, especially women because their lives are so constrained. Many years ago, I saw a documentary about Afghanistan before the West colluded with the Mujahideen and other militants after the Russian invasion to overthrow the communist government which had close links with the Soviet Union. The communist government was by no means perfect but it did introduce huge literacy programmes and made forced marriage illegal. Whatever its flaws, I know which regime I'd prefer to live under.

As Barbarianmum says, so many different powers have invaded Afghanistan because of its strategic position. It goes back further than the last few hundred years. Even Alexander the Great tried.


DolphinFC · 09/07/2021 06:33

Afghanistan is often called the graveyard of empires.


PickUpAPepper · 09/07/2021 07:15

Thanks for those links I’ll have a look at them. Thevenerables it might not just be symbolic - there was a similar brigade of yazidi women fighters. Their backs are to the wall really. Right across the near and Middle East women are barely allowed to be seen in public, with a few rare exceptions. It is only a certain type of man that is acceptable to such men, too.

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PickUpAPepper · 09/07/2021 07:29

The Near and Middle East wasn’t always so hostile to women. We need cultural change, not to found a new empire. As to how, on a postcard please. Those women fighters might have the best idea.

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PickUpAPepper · 09/07/2021 07:30

answers on a postcard please!

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Twickytwo · 09/07/2021 07:43

It is worth reading The Places in Between by the politician Rory Stewart. He walked across Afghanistan pre the invasion by the West. In rural villages women have always been hidden away and not given access to education. Don't forget most of Afghanistan is rural not Kabul.
I am just listening to Radio 4 , the Today programme, talking about the need to have strategies in place to protect girls and women.


FlowerArranger · 09/07/2021 08:01

I agree with @nettie434 and @BarbarianMum. When Western forces 'liberated' Afghanistan from the government imposed by Russia, they weren't doing it to free her people from communism and Russian domination. They did it to preserve dominion over a country of huge strategic importance.

It saddens me when people oppose foreign aid and don't want to get involved. We should remind ourselves that, ultimately, countries and borders are artifical constructs, and we all share a common humanity. The people living in war torn countries and dictatorships share the same hopes and aspirations as us.

It's useful to remember that much of the conflicts in the Middle East are the result of France and Britain carving it up by drawing lines on a map, without any concern for realities on the ground. And Balfour blythely 'giving' Palestine to the Jews, even though it wasn't his to give and there were Palestinians already living there. That's politics without concern for humanity.)

Anyone aware of a good charity to support to help Afghan women and children?


thinkingaboutLangCleg · 09/07/2021 09:10

It’s heartbreaking. I well remember western liberals in the 1980s supporting the insurgents in Afghanistan who were openly, from the start, subjugating women and removing their basic human rights wherever these so-called ‘freedom fighters’ gained power.

And when the Taliban gained power nationally, one of the first laws they passed banned women from working. (Prostitution became the only way many women could make a living — supposedly illegal of course, so many women were executed.)

And ooooh, their western backers were sooooo shocked. Bastards.


PickUpAPepper · 09/07/2021 17:10

And ooooh, their western backers were sooooo shocked. Bastards

The ‘liberal’ left does seem surprisingly willing to abandon women’s rights “for the greater good” at almost every opportunity, no matter how slight, doesn’t it.

To be fair to Johnson I read some initial material suggesting he was blithely making similar noises, about how the U.K. would still be monitoring and making sure the Taliban played nicely. Reading more widely it seems many Tories are unhappy too, but the bloody US have pulled out and that’s that. I don’t suppose the French would be interested - ? (Uncertain)

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PhilSwagielka · 10/07/2021 22:40

If the US hadn't intervened in the first place, the Taliban would never have come to power.


NiceGerbil · 11/07/2021 03:28

The intervention in the first place they sold help women but it was always rubbish

The taleban are awful for men as well.

For women and girls they are unspeakable.


NiceGerbil · 11/07/2021 03:29

USA had a 'war on drugs' motivation as well iirc? Loads of heroin from Afghanistan.


tzarine · 12/07/2021 03:33

i was heartened to see these women

but i fear what will happen when taliban takes over


InJest · 11/08/2021 15:00

Advancing Taliban are going door-to-door and forcibly taking girls as young as TWELVE to be sex slave wives for their fighters

Is there anything we can do?


NewSchoolYear · 11/08/2021 17:03

FFS what a disaster. What have we done? If had lost a son or daughter in Afghanistan I would be appalled at the futility. I’ve no idea what we can do to help. Those poor women and girls - that one child’s face in the car is terrified. It makes me want to weep. But that does jack shit. Is the UN capable of anything? We are dealing with people who aren’t interested in anything but their twisted religion. No negotiating with this lot unless we’re prepared to sanction this behaviour and turn a blind eye. Which looks like the height of our foreign ‘policy’ at the moment.


meditrina · 11/08/2021 17:14

I suppose a lot of this tracks back to 1979 with the USSR invasion, and the US funding of the muhajidin in the decade or so after. Though if course the roots go back further.

But the stark lesson from history is that no-one has conquered or even intervened successfully in Afghanistan. The political will might be found if there was any form of a plan, even the glimmerings of one, that was not 'invade' and 'kill off the opposition' (which could amount to genocide)

Is it appalling what's happening - of course. But what could or should be done differently - and how many deaths (talib, civilian, international) are acceptable in the pursuit of a goal that has been unachievable through so many conflicts?


InJest · 11/08/2021 17:20

You are both right. It is a hopeless situation. It breaks my heart.

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