This month's "Special Inaugural Issue" of Ms. Magazine
is not only irritating many feminists
with its cover, it also contains an implicit call for greater U.S. intervention in Afghanistan. Alisa Tang's article, "Lives on the Line," tells of the suffering of women under the resurgent Taliban and quotes an anonymous Afghan woman who, "in the seven years since the U.S.-led invasion toppled the extremist Muslim Taliban regime, . . . had finished high school, studied journalism in college and landed a job at a national television station. . . . Now her in-laws want her to stop working, threatening that they will take away her children otherwise." The article concludes with a plea from Manizha Naderi, "an Afghan American who runs the Women for Afghan Women aid organization," that "U.S. President Barack Obama will commit more money for infrastructure development, factory construction and employment" so that Afghan women will have more job opportunities. I don't think the Obama administration could have written a better argument to convince liberals and feminists to support the escalation of the war.
Thankfully, historians with a longer view will remember that "victimized" women were used as justifications for imperialist wars from the nineteenth century to the U.S. invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan.