fact sheet was compiled from information gathered from numerous
alternative news sources, including the Revolutionary Association
Women of Afghanistan. For more information go to www.rawa.org,
1989: The Soviet Union pulls its troops out of Afghanistan,
ending its 10-year war against the Afghan people and the U.S.
sponsored Mujaheddin. The Mujaheddin, a rebel force made up
of some 35,000 radical fundamentalist Muslims from 43 Islamic
countries, were founded, trained and funded to the tune of
$8 billion by the U.S. government. A primary figure in the
Mujaheddin, the young Saudi, Osama bin Laden, forged tactical
& ideological links among radical Islamic movements the world
- 1992: After "defeating the Soviets" in Afghanistan,
the U.S. makes no attempt to rebuild the country now decimated
politically and economically by the war. The country collapses
into increased factionalism and civil war.
- 1994: The Afghan government, now in the hands of the
fundamentalist Mujaheddin, is dangerously unstable, experiencing
ever-changing alliances, multiple presidents, and a number
of coup attempts. Some 60,000 civilians are killed in just
these two years. Osama bin Laden, disillusioned with the Mujaheddin,
moves to support the Islamic revolution then underway in Sudan,
continuing to build and expand his network of fundamentalist
1994: The hard line Taliban militia emerges out of the
Afghan chaos, introducing the most extreme form of Islamic
1996: The Taliban takes the Afghan capital of Kabul and
quickly unleashes an unprecedented assault on women's rights
-- this in a country where previously women had participated
in most aspects of civil society, comprising 70% of all teachers
and 40% of doctors. Osama bin Laden, back in Afghanistan since
May, is living under the protection of the Taliban. Soon after
the Taliban seizes power, bin Laden issues his first declaration
of jihad against the U.S., training militants to bring about
an Islamic revolution throughout the Arab world.
The U.S.-based Feminist Majority Foundation launches its
campaign to end United Nations and U.S. government support
of the Taliban regime, citing egregious violations of the
human rights of women.
1997: Pakistan becomes the first country to recognize
the Taliban. Saudi Arabia & the United Arab Emirates soon
follow. Bin Laden pulls in hundreds of trained fundamentalists
to fight with the Taliban, which by now controls 90% of Afghanistan.
Women's condition has so deteriorated that female suicides
1998: U.S. launches 70 cruise missiles against supposed
Afghan bases of Osama bin Laden in retaliation for attacks
on U.S. Embassies in Kenya & Tanzania. The U.N. evacuates
most of its people. Despite its anti-terrorist campaign against
bin Laden, the U.S. Government continues its support of the
Bin Laden and the Taliban enlist to fight with the Pakistanis
against Indian troops in Kashmir, increasing the influence
of radical fundamentalists in Pakistani society.
2001: Despite pleadings from women's rights organizations
throughout the world, the U.S. sends $40 million to the Taliban,
citing their cooperation in the "War On Drugs." By this time,
Afghanistan is the most poverty-stricken country in the world.
2001: Hijacked airplanes destroy New York's World Trade
Center towers and attack the Pentagon.
7, 2001: The U.S. begins bombing Afghanistan. Millions
flee in terror.