Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These basic rights are granted to every human in the United States by the constitution. In the 21st century, we as Americans take these basic rights for granted because we are free to pursue anything we wish for in life. We are given the opportunity to live our lives in a free society, with limited restrictions on how we conduct of lives. However, this is not the case for all the people outside of our country. The Women of Afghanistan were stripped of their basic human rights when the Taliban seized control of their country. (“Revocation of Rights”). A practice of gender apartheid was instituted against the women of Afghanistan whereby the life of women had basically no value and they were forced to live in a society in which a violation of the simplest day to day activities we take for granted could lead to death. Under the Taliban’s rule, a women life was worthless. In today’s world, no one ever thought people could be treated this way. The story of the Woman of Afghanistan opened the eyes of not only the United States, but the entire world to ensure as best as possible, that human rights of all people be protected.
Afghanistan has always been a country in turmoil. During the 1980’s, the Soviet Union invaded and occupied Afghanistan. With aid from the United States, militia forces called the Mujahedeen, or soldiers of god, forced the Soviets out of Afghanistan. However, soon thereafter, there was tremendous internal fighting and a number of groups were fighting for power. A group of young men and boys of Afghan descent emerged from this fighting as a powerful group. This group did not live in afghan society. They were raised in refugee camps and trained in ultra conservative religious schools mainly in Pakistan. This group became known as the Taliban and once in power they vowed to restore order and enforce strict Islamic law in Afghanistan. (“The Taliban and Afghan Woman”). However, no one in mankind could have predicted what this group would do to the women of Afghanistan.
Before the Taliban came into power, the women of Afghanistan were educated and employed and were productive members of society. Women made up 50 % of the students 60% of the teachers in Kabul University. In addition, 70% of school teachers, 50% of government workers and 40% of doctors in Kabul were also women (“Report on the Taliban’s War against Women”). This came to a stop in 1996, when the Taliban took control of Kabul, the capital city of Afghanistan. The Taliban began a reign of terror against women that shocked the world. They instituted extremists’ values against women and issued the following laws:
• Banished women from the workforce.
• Closed schools to girls and expelled women from college.
• Ordered that a woman could not leave her home unless accompanied by a close male relative.
• All windows of a women’s house visible by the public had to be painted black.
• Forced women to wear a Burqa (a cloth which completely covers the body.
• Did not allow women to be examined by a male doctor.
• Women could not use cosmetics, wear high heeled shoes, play sports, ride a bicycle nor were they allowed to laugh too loud.(“The Taliban & Afghan Woman”),(“Some of the restrictions Imposed by Taliban on Woman in Afghanistan”)
Under the Taliban’s rule, women had no importance in society unless they were having babies, satisfying a man’s sexual needs or doing house chores. Basically, women were slaves in this society and if they were caught breaking a rule, they were punished with brutal beatings, public flogging and even put to death for the simplest act which we and the rest of the world take for granted. Documented acts of violence and brutality against women were recorded and published for the world to see. According to the Feminist Majority Foundation, women who were caught violating the Taliban’s orders were punished as follows ;( “The Taliban...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document