The All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) sees the recent developments in Afghanistan as a major loss of face for the coalition led by US Imperialism active in the geo-politics of the region for several decades. Developments in the aftermath of withdrawal of American forces have resulted in the rapid takeover almost of the entire country by the Taliban, a regressive and socially conservative political force. The Taliban has declared an ‘Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’ and given the assurance that women’s rights will be respected, but only within the framework of the Shariat law. Predictably, this statement has led to anxiety and fear amongst the grassroots organizations of Afghan women and their supporters within the international community, who are being reminded of Taliban brutalities in particular against women and ethnic minorities in the 1990s.
American Imperialism, for a long time, has been bent on the extermination of democratic and socialist movements in Asia; for this purpose sustained financial, military and political support has been provided by it to reactionary and fundamentalist forces in the region. During Taliban rule between 1996 -2001 which was a sequel to this, all democratically-minded people in Afghanistan, in particular the brave Afghan women had to bear its most terrible consequences. They continued their struggle for equality and justice at that time and later. The subsequent long military occupation by the US has not been able to resuscitate democracy in the country and the return of the Taliban makes this evident.The present atmosphere of fear and uncertainty is also likely to affect the country’s economy and increase the miseries of ordinary people including women and children. The international community led by the UN needs to ensure that the Government that is likely to be formed in the country bases itself on consultations rather than arms so that peace is restored and takes measures to protect the rights of women and ethnic minorities to education, work and other democratic facilities.
The Union Government of India under the reactionary leadership of RSS-BJP has already isolated itself in the region by supporting the US-led imperialist strategy. Instead of acting with true humanitarian concern under the circumstances, the Union Government is rather tending towards using the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan to further its own policy of communal polarization in India by showing a sudden concern for democracy and women’s rights in Afghanistan and evoking Islamophobia. The AIDWA calls upon its units to support and campaign for the cause of equality and justice for Afghan women and to resist the BJP/RSS attempt to use the occasion to promote divisiveness within our ranks.