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Return to the Dark Ages?

4:26 PM, Nov 26, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Today in Afghanistan, as Gayle Tzemach Lemmon at Defense One reports:

Women, denied the right to work and go to school under the Taliban, now make up a quarter of the country’s parliament. They are entrepreneurs, doctors, health care workers and teachers. A network of women’s shelters now takes in girls and women beaten at home who are trying to escape violent marriages and families in a country where such violence is widespread. Some brides have barely reached their teens; others are even younger. Now, while the violence continues, they have a place to go to seek sanctuary.

None of this is guaranteed to last.  Seems, in fact, certain not to if the Karzai government does not sign the agreement approved by the:

Afghan grand assembly known as the loya jirga [that] okayed a U.S.-Afghanistan security deal hashed out over months of diplomatic wrangling. The agreement paves the way for up to 15,000 troops to remain in the country. But Afghan President Hamid Karzai surprised U.S. diplomats by saying he wanted to wait until next year to sign it.

Karzai is backing and filling and Susan Rice, head of the National Security Council made a hasty trip to Afghanistan to warn him of the consequences of not signing. These come down, in short, to the end of U.S. and NATO assistance after 2014.  Thus ending the country’s brief enlightenment which is already fading as it appears that for women found guilty of adultery:

Stoning may once again become the law.

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