Skip to comments.Taliban forced orphanage girls to become married sex slaves
Posted on 12/22/2001 5:27:16 PM PST by aculeus
A LOOK of outrage settled over the features of Abdul Habib Salim, head of the Allauddin orphanage, as he recalled how children had become spoils of war for Taliban officials who took over his institution in late 1996, writes On his first day in the job, the Taliban commander appointed to run the orphanage in place of Salim showed an interest in three teenage orphans. They were very pretty girls, said Salim. Fereshta was 18, a talented seamstress, Maleha was 17 and Mariam just 15. The next day they were gone.
The commander had taken the women as concubines for his brother and two other relatives. The Taliban didnt care about orphans, said Salim. They were just loot. They were forcibly married. There was nothing anybody could do.
A tale of unusual suffering has come to light in Kabul, where hundreds of women were abducted, forcibly married, raped or sold into sexual slavery by Taliban fighters. Many are still missing.
Orphans were easy prey. The girls had no families to protect them, said Roma, who teaches sewing at the orphanage, a grim building in a bomb-ravaged part of Kabul. They had no choice but to go with these men.
Many more girls were snatched from their homes. One was Shabnam, the sister-in-law of a 32-year-old baker called Mohamed Islamodin.
If I can find the Taliban commander who took her, I will kill him, he said. We think of her all the time. All her things are still here in the house. We dream she will come back to us.
Two years ago the family heard that Shabnam had become the property of a top Taliban commander with whom she was living in Kabul. After the Taliban fled Kabul, Islamodin went to the house where Shabnam had been. It was empty and there was no sign of her.
Perhaps they are in Pakistan or another province, he said. Our first priority is to find her. Then we must take revenge.
Mohamed Qasim, a general in the alliance of forces that led the assault to overthrow the Taliban, said he believed that up to 1,000 women had been abducted. He said many were kept as concubines and some were sold as sex slaves to Arabs through the terrorist network of Al-Qaeda.
We think many of these women were killed or are no longer in Afghanistan, said Qasim. But we will do our best to find them.
The abductions are evidence of the startling hypocrisy of the Taliban regime and its mullahs, who seemed obsessed with protecting womens virtue. It was said that Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Taliban leader, began his revolt against the government in 1994 in outrage at the rape of two women by soldiers. He captured the men and hanged them from the barrel of their tank.
In reality, the zeal of the religious police masked greater abuses by illiterate troops who claimed women as sexual trophies.
Roholla Stanikzai, a magistrate under the Taliban, recalls at least 20 cases in which officials were accused of raping women in Kabul.
One case involved a senior commander who tied up a 13-year-old neighbour and forced himself on her with the help of a female accomplice. The girls mother complained to police. The accomplice was imprisoned, but the commander was not even questioned.
Islamodin claimed most of the victims had been families with roots in northern Afghanistan, a hotbed of resistance to Taliban rule. They wanted to plant their seed in our women so they would not have to face another hostile generation fighting them from the north.
By all accounts, Taliban soldiers from Omars southern Pashtun stronghold were encouraged to seek northern Tajik brides in Kabul. They would offer money, as is customary, to the parents of their intended bride. It was unwise to refuse such proposals. Yet many did and paid for it.
The director of the womens prison in Kabul said there were usually an average of 40 women, some as young as 13, behind bars for turning down Taliban suitors. In the end, these dissenting brides always cracked, she said, particularly if other members of their family were brought into prison.
When the object of one Taliban soldiers passion fled to Pakistan, her sister was jailed in her place. Eventually the soldier offered the sister freedom if she would marry him instead. After a year in prison she accepted. Her fate is unknown.
Don't flame me too bad, y'all, I don't like these people, don't like their ways, don't like their religion... don't even like their food. BUT... I'm aware that no one thinks of himself as "a bad guy." One has to wonder how these guys can do such things and think of themselves as "not a bad guy." I'm offering an explanation (purely my own reading and reflection) of how they get away with it. That's all.
That's right. If you want true Islam, you need to go back to the source.
... Muhammed liked his "women" much younger.
I don't see how we can pluralize our society enough to accept a culture that commends what we condemn. I think it would be better to severely marginalize that culture.
IMHO, that doesn't justify the practice, it condemns the book.
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