After the almost 12-year American occupation, there has been a lot of speculation on the future of Afghanistan. While some have deemed the war “unwinnable”, others have talked about responsibility specifically in terms of Afghan women. Upon the close withdrawal of American forces (if they do not delay it again), Canadian and American media articles continue to inquire on the future of Afghanistan without Western guidance.
In an attempt to justify the importance of Western presence in Afghanistan, some articles rely on showing Afghani men and women in opposition to each other. Not only that, but soldiers are constantly depicted as attempting to bring Afghan women to trust them. Another example is shown through coverage of Aisha Bibi’s case, which MMW discussed in 2010. The romantic idea of the invader attempting to bring the non-Western, non-Christian, non-democratic and “primitive” women to collaborate with them (often against the non-Western, non-Christian, non-democratic and “primitive” man) reminds me of the colonial rhetoric of the noble savage.
Last week, Daisy Khan wrote an opinion piece for CNN. The article, titled “If we betray Afghan women, the Taliban win” is one of the most recent articles that I have seen attempting to revive the Bush discourse on saving Afghan women from the horrible Taliban or simply Afghani men, both of which are often conflated. [Read more...]