Posted by Riska Mirzalina
Follow me to Afghanistan, from the alleys of the Nobel Peace Prize Center in Oslo, Norway.
These photographs, taken by a professional journalist, L. Addario, will travel us to the tears and emotions. From maternal mortality to a jail-prison for a woman from asking a divorce. Afghanistan, heavily affected by Islamic Sharia law, is a struggling country. It may be one of the most dangerous place to born a female baby, especially when the country was still notoriously under the Taliban law.
Thanks to Lynsey Addario for her touching photographs.
The area which today makes up the Afghan state has been a part of many different Lordships, among them India, Persia, Genghis Khan’s empire, and Alexander the Great’s empire. In 1747, the Pashtun tribes were gathered into one kingdom led by Ahmad Shah Durrani, The Durrani Empire was the forerunner to today’s Afghanistan. From the end of 18th century to the beginning of the 20th century Afghanistan was drawn into power struggles between Russia and Great Britain. Afghanistan lay on the border between these two empires, and both wanted control over the area.
Emir Amanullah, who rose to power in 1919, attempted to reform Afghanistan by, among other things, introducing schooling for women. This received such disapproval from religious and tribal leaders that he was forced to abdicate his position and leave the country in 1929.
Afghanistan was a kingdom up until 1973, when Mohammad Daoud staged a coup d’etat and became president. In 1979, the Soviet forces invaded Afghanistan in support of the communist regime that took power in 1978 by way of a coup. They met resistance from American-backed Mujahedin soldiers and withdrew after ten years of war. When the Soviet withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989, ethnic and religious tensions, which had been set aside in favor of the fight against a common Soviet enemy, again rose to the surface and Afghanistan was cast into a period of civil war.
The Taliban arose as a religious insurgent against the Afghan war lords’ havoc in the civil war at the the beginning of the 1990′s. The Taliban’s core is made up of Pashtuns. When the Taliban came to power in 1996, it introduced the world’s strictest interpretation of Sharia law. It nevertheless received a great deal of support because it created stability in a land that was destroyed by civil war. Osama bin Laden settled in Afghanistan in 1996. He contributed financial support to the Taliban in exchange for hiding place within the country’s borders.
The current war in Afghanistan began on 7 October 2001 when the US and its allies launched a mass offensive against the Taliban. The war was a direct consequence of the terror attack in the US on 11 September 2001. The goal was to force the Taliban from power, prevent the al-Qaida network from using Afghanistan as a safe haven, and capture or kill the network’s leader, Osama bin Laden.
Karzai was elected as interim president of Afghanistan in 2001, and won the two next president elections in 2004 and 2009. He will not try to run for the presidency in the next election which is due in 2014. In 2014, NATO will transfer security responsibility to Afghan authorities and foreign troops will be pulled out.
Source: The Nobel Peace Prize Center, Norway.
- Childbirth danger in Afghanistan (edition.cnn.com)
- 100 Taliban militants give up fighting in Afghanistan (sgt-jim.blogspot.com)
- 22 NATO supply trucks destroyed in Afghanistan (miamiherald.com)