Despite Afghan Reforms, Afghan Child Bride's Torture Shows Major Cultural Obstacles - Page 4
Why? Women throughout the country are still at risk of abduction, rape, forced marriages and commodity trading (women traded like cattle). There is still social pressure (instigated by indoctrinated older women like Gul's mother-in-law) and sometimes legal pressure to stay in abusive marriages. Fleeing from a violent husband and forced marriage are considered "moral crimes" and punished with imprisonment.
Despite this bleak landscape, Afghan advocates say women's attitudes have quietly veered away from accepting subjugation since the Taliban overthrow 10 years ago. And because of women's support groups that are burgeoning and encouraging advocacy and education, women's confidence and assertiveness is strengthening.
But this could all change when foreign troops withdraw and the Karzai government navigates shark infested Taliban waters in the hope of achieving a tenuous peace, ending Taliban insurgency. Women activists feel that will be a most crucial time for them to hold the line against the government undermining their rights to please the patriarchal and women subjugating Taliban. It may be right back to business as usual, commodity trading women's rights for Talibani peace. The Taliban will have no problem treating women as chattel; it is their preferred way and their due. For them women's rights represent all that is noxious to their hardline Islamic militancy.
Experienced activist Sima Natiq expressed her thoughts about the Taliban this way. “I’m afraid we won’t have all this anymore if the Taliban are allowed back into society.”