torsdag 19. august 2021

The Taliban want the world to think they've changed. Early signs suggest otherwise

The Taliban's stunningly swift takeover of Afghanistan has caused dread across much of the nation, as Afghans anxiously readjust to life under a militant group that repressed millions when last in power. Under the Taliban's rule between 1996 and 2001, brutal floggings, amputations and public executions were common. Women were largely confined to their homes, and the death penalty was in place for offenses including female adultery, homosexuality and the rejection of Islam.

With the glare of the media again on Kabul, and Western forces staging a hasty retreat, the world is anxiously waiting to discover whether the new Taliban era will see a return to those days. The militants have so far sought to present an image of themselves as more progressive, inclusive and restrained than the group that terrorized communities two decades ago -- claiming that they will not seek retribution against their political enemies, and that women will play an important role in society and have access to education.