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Thread: The Plight of Women In Afghanistan: A Disturbing Picture- Maybe NSFW

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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Default The Plight of Women In Afghanistan: A Disturbing Picture- Maybe NSFW





    Our cover image this week is powerful, shocking and disturbing. It is a portrait of Aisha, a shy 18-year-old Afghan woman who was sentenced by a Taliban commander to have her nose and ears cut off for fleeing her abusive in-laws. Aisha posed for the picture and says she wants the world to see the effect a Taliban resurgence would have on the women of Afghanistan, many of whom have flourished in the past few years. Her picture is accompanied by a powerful story by our own Aryn Baker on how Afghan women have embraced the freedoms that have come from the defeat of the Taliban and how they fear a Taliban revival. (See pictures of Afghan women and the return of the Taliban.)

    I thought long and hard about whether to put this image on the cover of TIME. First, I wanted to make sure of Aisha's safety and that she understood what it would mean to be on the cover. She knows that she will become a symbol of the price Afghan women have had to pay for the repressive ideology of the Taliban. We also confirmed that she is in a secret location protected by armed guards and sponsored by the NGO Women for Afghan Women. Aisha will head to the U.S. for reconstructive surgery sponsored by the Grossman Burn Foundation, a humanitarian organization in California.

    We are supporting that effort. (Watch TIME's video on photographing Aisha for the cover.)

    I'm acutely aware that this image will be seen by children, who will undoubtedly find it distressing. We have consulted with a number of child psychologists about its potential impact. Some think children are so used to seeing violence in the media that the image will have little effect, but others believe that children will find it very scary and distressing that they will see it, as Dr. Michael Rich, director of the Center on Media and Child Health at Children's Hospital Boston, said, as "a symbol of bad things that can happen to people." I showed it to my two young sons, 9 and 12, who both immediately felt sorry for Aisha and asked why anyone would have done such harm to her. I apologize to readers who find the image too strong, and I invite you to comment on the image's impact.

    But bad things do happen to people, and it is part of our job to confront and explain them. In the end, I felt that the image is a window into the reality of what is happening and what can happen in a war that affects and involves all of us. I would rather confront readers with the Taliban's treatment of women than ignore it. I would rather people know that reality as they make up their minds about what the U.S. and its allies should do in Afghanistan. (See the cover story "Afghan Women and the Return of the Taliban.")

    The much publicized release of classified documents by WikiLeaks has already ratcheted up the debate about the war. Our story and the haunting cover image by the distinguished South African photographer Jodi Bieber are meant to contribute to that debate. We do not run this story or show this image either in support of the U.S. war effort or in opposition to it. We do it to illuminate what is actually happening on the ground. As lawmakers and citizens begin to sort through the information about the war and make up their minds, our job is to provide context and perspective on one of the most difficult foreign policy issues of our time. What you see in these pictures and our story is something that you cannot find in those 91,000 documents: a combination of emotional truth and insight into the way life is lived in that difficult land and the consequences of the important decisions that lie ahead.

    To learn more about Aisha and her reconstructive surgery in the U.S., visit www.GrossmanBurnFoundation.org.


    Read more: TIME Cover Depicts the Disturbing Plight of Afghan Women - TIME
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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    wow, how horrible for that girl. Its amazing that she even survived.
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    Jesus fucking christ, her poor face. I can't look at that without crying. I'm glad someone is going to try and help her.

    There's a complex political statement behind TIME putting up that cover photo, obviously. We can take it one way or another--emotional manipulation to encourage the US public to keep supporting the war, for example. I am not going to get into my feelings about foreign involvement in Afghanistan and terrorism and oil and the hopeless immensity of human evil and cruelty and aaaaggghhhh yada yada yada....just going to keep it to the feminist issue here and say, men who do that shit to women should have it done to them. It's WRONG and it needs to END. *sigh*
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    I think "the West" needs a shock like this to remind ourselves what's at stake here. Things might be bad in Iraq but the women there have never been subjected to this kind of barbaric treatment and contempt. Bastards.
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    Elite Member Wiseguy's Avatar
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    I'm also in tears looking at this poor girl's picture. It's disturbing and sickening beyond words. How the hell are we supposed to help them???


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    She's so beautiful. The whole situation is sickening.
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    What a beautiful young lady. This crap goes on every day in Afghanistan. Everyday. Women are nothing more than slaves to men. Women have less value than livestock. This is no different than honor killing, well except the dying part.

    I am glad this young lady survived and doctors are going to attempt to help her.

    There is only one way to stop the Taliban, total anniliation.

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    Didn't Obama inform us just a few months ago that the Taliban is not our enemy?


    They are if you're female.

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    Elite Member Kathie_Moffett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CornFlakegrl View Post
    Didn't Obama inform us just a few months ago that the Taliban is not our enemy?


    They are if you're female.
    Exactly. Thank you. I hate it when people make these discussions about race. My problems with countries like Afghanistan have solely to do with gender issues, which arise from cultural and religious practices that I find simply abhorrent.

    Indeed, it's easy for Obama to say the Taliban isn't our enemy. Wonder how he'd feel if someone threatened to mutilate his daughters.

    Of course I made a bet with my husband many years ago that in this still-very-racist country of ours we'd elect a black man to the Presidency before we'd elect ANY woman. I was right. He lost the bet.
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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    WTF.

    To think the taliban were at one point on the ropes and fleeing the country. Now they are back and stronger than ever.

    So is this cover story more reason for coalition forces to "liberate" (f**king once again) the Afghan people? Jeezus what a cluster f**k.

    There's dozens of countries where women are cruelly treated and abused and raped and killed. Where's the outrage and U.S. help over that?

    Jeezus christ on a s**t stick.

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    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    The deformation of this woman is not a reason to be at war if for no other reason than we can't statistically beat down every misogynistic, backass regime.

    But to try and redefine the Taliban image as if it's just another legitimate political movement that deserves a seat at the table ... that's ludicrous.

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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CornFlakegrl View Post
    The deformation of this woman is not a reason to be at war if for no other reason than we can't statistically beat down every misogynistic, backass regime.

    But to try and redefine the Taliban image as if it's just another legitimate political movement that deserves a seat at the table ... that's ludicrous.
    That's because the administration so f**ked up this "war" that the taliban took advantage and made a resurgence.

    With American troops dying in record numbers everyday for this cluster f**k, the only other 'option' is to somehow "legitimize" the taliban because that's the only near short term solution possible to get the f**k out of there. The American public certainly doesn't have the time or taste for yet another another 'surge' to defeat the taliban, and why should they. They've been jerked around for 9 bloody years already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by celeb_2006 View Post
    WTF.
    There's dozens of countries where women are cruelly treated and abused and raped and killed. Where's the outrage and U.S. help over that?
    Calm down, one misogynistic country at a time. Gotta give the USA time to repopulate the dead so we can continue to save everyone elses ass.

    You said it so perfectly "With American troops dying in record numbers everyday...... The American public certainly doesn't have the time or taste (you forgot finances) for yet another another 'surge' to defeat the taliban, and why should they. They've been jerked around for 9 bloody years already." Don't forget all the other places we have had to police. It's getting old and it's always 'over there'.

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    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celeb_2006 View Post
    That's because the administration so f**ked up this "war" that the taliban took advantage and made a resurgence.

    With American troops dying in record numbers everyday for this cluster f**k, the only other 'option' is to somehow "legitimize" the taliban because that's the only near short term solution possible to get the f**k out of there. The American public certainly doesn't have the time or taste for yet another another 'surge' to defeat the taliban, and why should they. They've been jerked around for 9 bloody years already.
    Agreed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alysheba View Post
    Calm down, one misogynistic country at a time. Gotta give the USA time to repopulate the dead so we can continue to save everyone elses ass.

    You said it so perfectly "With American troops dying in record numbers everyday...... The American public certainly doesn't have the time or taste (you forgot finances) for yet another another 'surge' to defeat the taliban, and why should they. They've been jerked around for 9 bloody years already." Don't forget all the other places we have had to police. It's getting old and it's always 'over there'.
    Very right.
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