A Day in the Life of Sharia

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In December 2011, Sahar Gul, a 15-year-old Afghan girl and underage bride, was freed by Afghan police after having been severely tortured for six months by her in-laws in an attempt to force her into prostitution. During her captivity, Sahar had been kept locked in a basement, tortured with hot irons, her fingers broken and fingernails ripped out.

While Sahar’s horrific ordeal sparked justifiable outrage among many Afghans, her agony is all too commonplace in Afghanistan, a country in which violence against women and girls is both pervasive and growing.

The violent abuse used against Afghan females also entails the widespread and socially accepted practice of forced child marriage, a cultural and religious reality that has led to over half of the marriages in Afghanistan involving girls under the age of 16.

So, given that, it’s not surprising to find that in the decade after the ouster of the Taliban from power in 2001, Afghanistan still remains one of the world’s most dangerous places for women. According to the UN’s Gender Inequality Index, Afghanistan ranks as the world’s sixth-worst country for women due to violence — including domestic abuse — sexual harassment, poverty and lack of healthcare.

Moreover, Afghan women and girls — in addition to underage marriage — are also subjected to honor killings and the traditional Afghan practice known as “baad,” whereupon women are given away to pay family debts or settle disputes.

Unfortunately — despite the rise of scores of women’s advocacy groups and the enactment of laws guaranteeing women’s rights — both the Afghan justice system and its patriarchal society remain heavily stacked against Afghan women and girls.

For example, in April 2009 Afghan President Hamid Karzai signed the Shiite Personal Status Law, legislation which applied to Afghanistan’s minority Shiite populace. Provisions in that legislation allowed 14-year-old girls to marry as well as men to rape their wives.

After outcries by Afghan women’s groups that the government was legalizing marital rape, Karzai said the law would be amended to bring it in line with the Afghan constitution, which guarantees equal rights for women.

To that end, the Afghan government enacted later in 2009 the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW) law which criminalized acts like early or forced marriage and rape.

Despite its passage, however, a UN report in November 2011 found that the EVAW act was rarely enforced, citing as an example the 2,299 crimes reported in 2010, of which only 155 cases, or just 7 percent, were prosecuted.
According to the UN report, “Judicial officials in many parts of the country have begun to use the law — but its use represents a very small percentage of how the government addresses cases of violence against women.”

Of course, it’s not terribly surprising that given the treatment of women in Afghan society the response by Afghanistan’s police and judiciary is to either ignore crimes launched against women or, in most cases, send the women back to their abusers.

Nowhere has that latter point been better demonstrated than in the recent case of Gulnaz, a 19-year-old Afghan girl who was raped by her cousin’s husband and imprisoned in 2009 for “forced adultery.”

After spending two and a half years in jail, during which time she gave birth to a daughter fathered by her defiler, Gulnaz was offered a pardon in December 2011 by Afghan President Hamid Karzai on the condition Gulnaz marry her rapist.

While Karzai’s decision may have engendered outraged disbelief from those in the West its foundation was deeply rooted in Afghan custom and Islamic law. Specifically, Gulnaz’s little girl, having been born in prison, is considered to be illegitimate, a disgrace to her family and, as a consequence, never to be accepted by Afghan society unless her parents marry.

Yet, whether prompted by domestic pressures or by a need to polish Afghanistan’s international image, Karzai graciously released Gulnaz without the precondition she wed her rapist. In a bitter irony for Gulnaz, however, she has now traded the relative safety of the jail cell for a life on the run.

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  • ObamaYoMoma

    So, given that, it’s not surprising to find that in the decade after the ouster of the Taliban from power in 2001, Afghanistan still remains one of the world’s most dangerous places for women

    It's kind of hilarious but sad at the same time to read impressions like this writer's impression of Afghanistan over 10 years later after the US invasion. This writer sounds like he is surprised, disappointed, and appalled all at the same time.

    However, the Sharia compliant Northern Alliance, who are the Afghanis that we are still propping up to this day in Afghanistan, from day one have always been our eternal enemies and the eternal enemies of all non-Muslim unbelievers in the world as well. Their so-called democracy that we are still propping up, thanks to Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, a Muslim stealth jihadist who penetrated the Bush administration, in essence is really a Sharia state, as Afghanistan’s constitution was enshrined with Sharia as the supreme authority for law.

    Therefore, the fantasy based nation-building mission in Afghanistan, exactly like the fantasy based nation-building mission in Iraq as well, from the first day onward couldn't have been more counterproductive, fantasy based, and misguided, and it's kind of sad that some people are just starting to figure it out now, over 10 years later.

    Meanwhile, thousands of patriotic American troops have either been killed in action or maimed and trillions of American taxpayer dollars wasted all for nothing, and no one is being held to account. Instead, the politicians, the generals, and the news media are all working together in concert to ensure that the American people never find out about what really are the two biggest strategic blunders ever in American history.

    Indeed, some people like me for years have been trying to warn everyone about what was really going on while being personally attacked and ostracized by moonbats on the right and the left simultaneously.

    In any event, it is very sad how the Afghanis oppress females, but when it comes to the oppression of females, Afghanistan is hardly alone, as harsh oppression of females, Christians, and indeed all other non-Muslim “infidels” living in Islamic countries throughout the Islamic world is endemic. In other words, stop singling out Afghanistan as if Afghanistan is the loan exception to the rule. Harsh and degrading oppression of females and all non-Muslim unbelievers in the Islamic world is universal, and even in the Islamic countries that we are foolishly propping up. Hell, they sentence blasphemers and apostates to death all the time as well at the same we are also stupidly propping them up.

    “That may be more a problem with Afghan society, where it’s nearly impossible for a woman to live alone, without a husband, father, brother or a grown son.”

    Don't be absurd, it's not a problem of Afghan society. Instead, it is a manifestation of Islam. Please stop trying to sugarcoat and whitewash it.

    Unfortunately, the problems women face in Afghanistan don’t seem to be abating anytime soon

    What you mean abate? Don't make me laugh, it will never abate as long as Islam prevails. Hell, at the rate mass Muslim immigration with all of its excess baggage for the purpose of stealth demographic conquest to make Islam supreme is going today completely unopposed and unacknowledged in the USA and indeed the entire West, per the dictates of PC multiculturalism, female oppression and the oppression of all non-Muslim unbelievers as well will be a permanent ubiquitous feature of the West soon enough.

    In fact, they almost assuredly seem closer to intensifying as both the Afghan government and the United States are currently seeking to negotiate with the Taliban to end its insurgency and reintegrate itself into Afghan society.

    That's utterly ridiculous! The US should be vigorously trying to reignite the jihad between the Northern Alliance and the Taliban instead. In fact, if the GWB administration hadn't been so incredibly blinded by PC multiculturalism and rendered completely incompetent as a direct result, it never would have ever intervened in the jihad between the Taliban and the Northern Alliance, as Muslims fighting Muslims helps the Dar al Harb (us) and harms the Dar al Islam (them).

    Indeed, when Reagan was President, our policy with respect to the jihad between Iraq and Iran was to attempt to ensure it lasted as long as possible. Then in 2000 GWB gets elected, and he not only abandons Reagan's “Peace Through Strength” defense policy, he adapts Powell's insane “You Break It, You Own It” defense policy.

    Hence, we no longer use overwhelming brute force to swiftly eliminate our enemies while deliberately leaving behind our death and destruction to fester and to serve as deterrence. Instead, we employ a much more compassionate 21st Century cutting edge defense strategy: Indeed, we try to win our enemies' hearts and minds by foolishly occupying them for years on end in order to compassionately lift them up out of poverty and despair to democratize them, which is impossible, and the splendid inevitable outcome of our new compassionate cutting edge defense strategy, of course, is the two biggest strategic blunders ever in American history.

  • oldtimer

    Moderate Muslims, Sharia law,,, How sad to think that the world is so blinded by their lies. Evil.

  • aspacia

    Where are the feminists. Naomi Wolfe, Gloria Steinem, where are you?

    • tanstaafl

      They are being good, obedient Muslimahs and living in a harem in the Gulf.

  • LindaRivera

    The only Muslims that the West should bring into our countries are these innocent victims whose suffering is absolutely horrendous. God help them! To bring in other Muslims is to import ALL of the terrible things against innocents that take place in Afghanistan and other Muslim countries.

  • tanstaafl

    We cannot invent time travel soon enough.

    But wait, if we want to go back to the Stone Age…….we can just visit Afghanistan.

    • kafir

      There were people in the stone age. If you wanted to go back to a time that emulates afghanistan and the rest of the muslim world, you'd have to go back to the primordial ooze, and find a branch of the chain that got stuck there.

  • BS77

    We long for the day when this hideous ideology is TOTALLY forgotten