AFGHANISTAN… WHAT CAN WE DO?
If you wish to find out more about Afghanistan and help to improve the opportunities for the women of Afghanistan in particular, consider these activities:
Video: Kandahar, Director Moshen Makhmalbaf, Indep 2001. Visually stunning film that depicts life in Afghanistan and shows the indoctrination of young boys, the desolate nature of the country and the poor way of life. Strikingly filmed.
Video: Osama, Director Siddiq Barmak, MGM 2004. A moving, indeed haunting, tale of the rise to power of the Taliban and the effect on one widow and her daughter disguised as a boy. Excellent screenplay. NOT about Bin Laden.
Book: Taliban: Islam, Oil and the New Great Game in Central Asia, Ahmed Rashid, I B Tauris and Co, 2001. Fascinating, informative and easily readable account of the history of Afghanistan and the effect of the Taliban.
Book: The Bookseller of Kabul, Asne Seierstad, Virago 2004. A stunning account of the lives of a family in Kabul and the effect of the Taliban.
Book: Jihad vs McWorld, Terrorism’s Challenge to Democracy, Benjamin R. Barber, Ballantine 2001. An analysis of the central conflict of
Website: www.awai.org Afghan Women’s Association International
Website: www.rawa.org Revolutionary Assoc of the Women of Afghanistan
Donate to the International Red Cross, which provides medical products, clothing, educational supplies and other vital assistance to the needy in Afghanistan. If you donate to a charity, ensure the products are fed into the emerging economy, not simply ‘dumped’ into villages. This destroys the few green shoots of economic recovery so needed at the village level.
Keep an open mind about Afghanistan. Acknowledge that the country has now become a haven for terrorists as the Taliban has resumed power. Support any efforts by Afghan women to improve their circumstances, gain an education, become professionals, and contribute to their country’s survival. Support organizations that are now helping Afghan citizens who have emigrated to the US and other countries.