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Malalai Joya, “irrelevant” for warlords and self-sold writers but relevant for my suffering people

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I and millions of Afghans agree with Malalai Joya that there is no fundamental change in the life of Afghans after the occupation of Afghanistan by the US and allies

Nelofar Jawidana, IndyMedia, April 25, 2011

March 25, 2011 - Boston, Malalai Joya and Noam Chomsky

Whenever Malalai Joya accelerates her struggle and makes headlines in the media, Afghan warlords, their supporters and some pro-US writers come into action to disturb her very clear message for freedom, justice, democracy and women’s rights. For me, this is the biggest sign of her success.

After her extremely successful speaking tour to the USA, and especially giving join presentation against US occupation of Afghanistan alongside Noam Chomsky, once again a number of pro-warlords and pro-occupation individuals wrote against Joya. Almost all of these articles present the same arguments and quote from each other, therefore I stress on the most recent one.

I am a woman amongst the millions of Afghan women who accept Malalai Joya as their representative and consider her “the bravest woman of Afghanistan”, “iconic human rights activist”, and “champion for Afghan woman”. In the article “Media Darling in the West, Irrelevant in Afghanistan” i, written by Abbas Daiyar for Kabul-based Daily Outlook Afghanistan, the writer hallucinates and it is difficult to comprehend what he tries to convey to the readers in his antonym words.

He calls Ms Joya “irrelevant in Afghanistan”, does he think that speaking against the crimes by puppet regime of Russia, Jehadis fundamentalist warlords and the most misogynist and brutal Taliban; or uncovering the abuse and violence against women, poverty, corruption, drug mafia and the real face of occupation, bombardment and civilian casualties by US government is irrelevant? If these points are irrelevant, then turning Afghanistan into military base of US; installment of Khalqis and Parchamis, Jehadi warlords, technocrats, Taliban and Gulbudin Hekmatyar into the power and let their reins free to abuse our nation; covert deals by the government, increment in the rate of drug production and sexual abuse of girls/women under the eyes of foreign troops is in the current context of Afghanistan are relevant?

The so-called writer claims that Joya “is a star among the anti-war left circles of the West” and was granted US visa by call of leftist-pressure-groups. Before writing this article, Abbas should have “put more thought into doing research” that Ms Joya is not only supported by leftists but also by all freedom-loving, independent and democratic individuals and organizations of the country and world.

You should know that recently when the US government tried to stop her speaking tour to the US, many groups including The American Civil Liberties Union, American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and PEN American Center sent open letters to Secretary Clinton ii and condemned her visa denial.

Even members of Congress stepped in to denounce the visa denial, representative McDermott drafted a letter, co-signed by Senators Patrick Leahy, Patty Murray, and Bernie Sanders, as well as Representatives Jay Inslee, Keith Ellison, Peter Welch, Betty McCollum, and Bill Pascrell, asking for "full reconsideration" of the visa application, stating that they "were distressed" to hear the reasons presented by the Embassy.iii

Well-known writer, Robert Dreyfuss, who spent a day with Joya in Maryland, wrote in a piece on The Nation: “To call the circumstances under which she organizes in Afghanistan difficult is an understatement.” iv

Carol Rose of The Boston Globe wrote: “The exclusion of Malalai Joya is just the latest example of “ideological exclusion,” the practice by which our government excludes people who dare to criticize the policies of the U.S. government.” v

Which of these organizations are and individuals are leftist Mr. Abbas?

As an Afghan woman who considers Malalai Joya as her voice, for me it is not a shame to be supported by leftist but I will be the first one to curse Ms. Joya if she is praised by right wing and infamous killers such as Sayyaf and Mohaqiq or the self-sold intellectuals who are trying to justify foreign troops in Afghanistan. If it was not a political move by the US government to silence Joya’s voice in the US and take the rights of US ordinary tax payers to have access to true information, do you want to say, alike Wazhma Frough, you contacted US embassy and they told you that Joya was not given visa due to logistical problems.

Indeed, I am surprised that how ironically you are admiring Joya’s courage in order to show yourself impartial and hide your real face behind these words but in the next sentence you can’t hold it anymore by saying that “Afghanistan has many such brave women…” “…are far more deserving…” I was eagerly reading to know who you will mention as brave women. Certainly beside Malalai Joya, Afghanistan have many brave women who have even lost their life for women’s rights and freedom but not your ideal, Dr. Sima Samar. Everyone knows in Afghanistan that she is a member of the central committee of Hezb-e-Wahdat (Unity Party), vi a fundamentalist religious party convicted of war crimes, rape, human slaughtering and looting by international human rights organization. Can such person serve “her entire life struggling against warlords and for women rights?” Should we talk about the ethnic discrimination or corruption in Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission under her leadership or the silence and uselessness of this commission against the crimes still committed in the country? We Afghans know well that Sima Samar’s Human Rights commission was set up by the West in order to cover up the human rights abuses in Afghanistan.

Abbas, you should tell Noor Jahan Akbar it is true that majority of the people she has met in United States of America are unaware of most of the things going on in Afghanistan and the government of USA tries her best to keep them ignorant through the propaganda of mass media corporates she has in the hand to distract the reality. But can you give an example of the “bold statements” from your ideals where they have spoken against the awful war crimes committed by the foreign troops especially of US? Have you both “put a little thought into doing research” to know about the connection and links of women who represent 28 percent of the National Assembly with warlords or if they serve in the interest of neighboring and other countries or not?

I and millions of Afghans agree with Malalai Joya that there is no fundamental change in the life of Afghans after the occupation of Afghanistan by the US and allies. Our people have been put from pan into fire. The US and NATO are here for their economic and strategic interests. The occupation has changed the life of warlords and criminal by further filling their pockets to have mythic capital in Dubai and other foreign countries. Our people were and are killed; raped, looted and abused by warlords and Taliban and after the occupation a third force joined them.

To feel how much Joya’s point of view is praised by other Afghans, I refer you to the recently published book in Farsi, which is a collection of tens of articles by Afghan writers in support of Malalai Joya and her fight for justice. vii

Malalai Joya gives a very clear alternative and that is the power and struggle of our people to walk out of this quagmire, her cause and fight is an alternative to the presence of foreign troops. In the past few years, hundreds of thousands of angry Afghans have come to streets to oppose the occupation forces who continue to kill our innocent people while have hidden links with terrorist and drug-mafia bands. But you and enslaved writers of your type can’t notice it because you don’t believe in people’s power and think that US government is the savior of the world.

Yes Ms. Joya doesn’t consider herself as heroine of Afghanistan. For her, the real hero and heroine are the victims of sexual violence who raise their voice against the atrocities and step on the culture of silence. She gets her energy and power from victims of 1 million people killed during Russian invasion, 65,000 Kabulis killed during the dog-fights of Jehadis, Zarmina executed publicly during barbaric Taliban and children killed in US bombardments in the name of insurgents. That is why Joya dedicated her book “A Woman Among Warlords” to “the Bashiras, Rahellas, Bibi Guls, Pukhtanas and all my oppressed people whose sighs, tears and sorrows nobody sees.”