Why are the Taliban against women's education in Afghanistan?

This is the second column by Noor Badshah Yousafzai

My heart aches all the time at the helplessness of an Afghan woman who was born in Afghanistan, grew up in the dust, never slept in an air-conditioned room, never slept in a soft bed, never had a good meal, no clean water, no good shoes, no good clothes, no adequate health or education! Love and happiness are not part of the fate of Afghan women.

Early marriage, early motherhood and lack of education are commonplace for an Afghan woman. Afghan women are always afraid of becoming widows and orphaning their children after marrying at a young age. After forty years of war, every woman in Afghanistan whose husband, father, brother and children have been killed is grieving. And there is no healing, because those killed never return.

Afghan women face difficulties, struggles, worries and challenges at all stages of their lives. Moreover, those who have come to Iran, Turkey or Europe do not always feel comfortable there either. They have problems with education, learning the language, cultural differences and so on - it's so difficult you can't even imagine!

Afghan women are the most innocent and sad women in the world, but they are also very hospitable and respectful people who smile. Afghan women respect others and expect this in return. Unfortunately, their hearts are wounded.
Several generations have grown up with war in Afghanistan over the last 40 years, and even before that, differences between the Afghan government's political parties, martial law and attempts to overthrow the government meant that people could not get enough education. Yet education was and is a basic right. Since the time of King Amanullah Khan, the hero of Afghanistan's liberation, Afghanistan has been ruled by religious groups, extremists and mullahs who oppose modern secular education and the education of women. Women's education is absolutely unacceptable to them.

Since 2001, the government of former President Hamid Karzai has largely liberated the country and championed women's rights and education. After Hamid Karzai, Ashraf Ghani's government built a large number of schools, colleges and universities in Afghanistan over the last eight years, gave jobs to women and tried to spread education in the country.

But since the eight years of Ashraf Ghani's government, the Taliban have continuously destroyed schools for girls. They have attacked countless universities, preaching against modern education for women in Muslim places of worship. They did not shy away from violence and murder. They did not accept women's education under any circumstances, and the imams of many mosques strongly supported the Taliban. For any Islamic imam who disobeyed the Taliban had to fear death.

Under the governments of Hamid Karzai and Ashraf Ghani, education spread to the cities, but villages remained excluded from education until today because of the Taliban and religious extremists. The ordinary youth in the villages often believed the imams and called women's education a sin.

When the Afghan government collapsed last August and the Taliban took power, the Taliban began openly banning women's education. Last week, the tears of an Afghan girl shook the world when she was sent back home from school because education for women in Afghanistan is banned from the sixth grade.

I wonder why Islam originated in Saudi Arabia but women are allowed to go to school in Saudi Arabia but not in Afghanistan?

Turkey is also a Muslim country where girls are taught freely, women are allowed to be taught in the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and Tunisia, but not in Afghanistan.
Isn't that strange? Or maybe I think that the Taliban have their own Islam, an Islam of their own making!

All countries should show compassion to Afghanistan, the people and the women of Afghanistan and force the Taliban to give up their hostility towards women's education.

Afghan women have the same right to education as everyone else. Education is a basic human right. Afghan women are human beings like you and me.



Photo by Wanman uthmaniyyah on Unsplash

About the author

Noor Badshah Yousafzai ist ein in Berlin lebende pakistanisch-afghanische Journalist. Er schreibt über Politik, Taliban, Frauenermächtigung, Religiösen Extremismus und Soziale Themen.
Sein Twitter Handle ist: https://twitter.com/NBYousafzai

Noor Badshah Yousafzai is a Pakistani-Afghan journalist living in Berlin. He writes about politics, Taliban, women's empowerment, religious extremism and social issues. His Twitter handle is: https://twitter.com/NBYousafzai



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