Women and the Taliban: A Western, Post 9/11 Perspective

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Women and the Taliban According a Western Post 9/11 Perspective Introduction: To the western perspective, the Taliban is a name which generates an immediate image of militant Islamic politics, explicit support of terror-oriented tactics on a global scale and a localized social hierarchy in which women are treated with gross inequality. Indeed, while the first two characteristics noted here would draw the attention and military action of the United States in the immediate aftermath of the September 11th attacks, it is this latter feature which may ultimately be the most persistent, troubling and lasting of characteristics. Today, more than a decade since al Qaeda masterminded the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and more than a decade since the U.S responded by invading Afghanistan in pursuit of both al Qaeda personnel and the Taliban regime which gave them safe harbor, Afghani women continue to be the subject of much international concern. As the discussion here will demonstrate, the human rights violations visited upon the women of Afghanistan during the Taliban's rule would be grotesque and widespread. Moreover, the discussion will illustrate that though the War in Afghanistan would improve the fortunes of women there in the years following 9/11, these fortunes like the fortunes of Afghanistan itself are impacted by uncertainty, instability and violence. While advances in the treatment of women have been forced by the attention and presence of the
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