We Will Defeat All Anti-Women Powers!

The Taliban’s entry into Kabul and the official takeover of the Afghan administration affected the whole world. This was also the declaration of the military and political defeat of the US imperialism, which has been occupying the country since 2001. In this way, the oppression and violence of the Taliban administration on the Afghan people for many years came to the fore again.

In the conflicts between the imperialists and their collaborator forces, the issues related to women and LGBTI+ have never had any value other than excuses to be presented to the masses. As it will be remembered, one of the most important arguments of the US, which based its occupation policy on anti-communism and/or the claim of “democracy”, was “women’s freedom”. It was the US that gave the biggest support to the Taliban; that provided weapons to those who said that women would be given their “rights within the framework of Sharia” after they took over the administration.

The US, which invaded Afghanistan with rhetoric of “democracy”, “human rights”, “emancipation of women”, made everything worse in the region. The withdrawal from Afghanistan and the subsequent seizure of power by the Taliban once again revealed the true purpose of the US presence in the country. For women, beyond just the dress-up debate, the issue means that their whole lives turn into conditions of complete slavery. In terms of LGBTI+, the situation is clear; death, which the rules of sharia decree! Seeing the Taliban’s attitude towards women and LGBTI+ and claiming that women were free during the US occupation is nothing more than a rant. Although urban women gained some rights such as access to education and health with the constitution prepared after the US occupation, these rights did not even partially reach women from rural areas, where nearly 80 percent of the female population lives. Apart from the right to go to school and work, even men’s consent was required for access to health services, and according to research reports (2019), two-thirds of Afghan men complained that women had “too many rights”.

In Afghanistan during the occupation period, when violence against women was at it’s most intense, the images of Ferhunde Melikzade, a woman lynched and burned to death in the capital city of Kabul, by a crowd of men gathered as a result of an argument she had with an amulet seller in front of a shrine, has still not been erased from our memory. The only effect of presenting the last twenty years as a women’s rights “fairy tale” was that the images could spread to the world public opinion, and yet Ferhunde’s coffin was carried by women. The “bacha bazi” practice, in which boys were abused by older men, continued during the US occupation, the ban in 2018 remained only for show. In short, neither the occupation of the imperialist powers, nor the domination of the reactionaries, independence, freedom, justice, etc. has no meaning for the public, especially children, women and LGBTI+.

Despite these conditions, there are is course women and LGBTI+ resistance in Afghanistan. Although ignored, the revolutionary forces in Afghanistan are also calling for escalating the struggle. Developing solidarity with Afghan refugee women and LGBTI+ is an important part of this struggle. In this sense, the side of those who support the liberation and freedom of women and LGBTI+ is clear. Despite the circles arguing about internal balances, or the fact that the Taliban is a completely organic element, or even its struggle against imperialism, our task remains to spread the truth. This is part of the struggle. However, those who support the Taliban and defend the policy of the Taliban are also targets of revolutionaries and communists.

The fascist Turkish state has a significant history of anti-people crime and persecution at home and in the Middle East. The ruling clique, led by the fascist AKP/MHP and joined by Doğu Perinçek and the like, has long established links with reactionary-Islamist and fundamentalist forces, including the Taliban, al-Qaeda and IS. It trained and armed them and deployed them against the revolutionary and legitimate struggles of the people in Turkey, Syria and other countries in the region. However, in every reactionary attempt and military adventure, it has faced fierce resistance from the people and revolutionary forces. The closest example of this is the invasion attacks that are still going on in Rojava today. The attacks against Rojava, a woman’s revolution that was born in response to anti-woman and LGBTI+ policies, do not mean only an attack on the Kurdish freedom struggle. They are also attacks on the freedom struggle of women of various nations and peoples living in the region.

While fascism is on the rise all over the world, the first area it attacks is the fought-for rights of women and LGBTI+. Women and LGBTI+ never step back in the face of aggression in Turkey; from the prohibition of LGBTI+ events or forbidding the sale of products featuring rainbows, to the decision to withdraw from the Istanbul Convention to the pro-woman co-presidency and municipal trustee system, to the enactment of laws that legitimize harassment and rape. In similar developments that took place in many places from Spain to Latin America, from the USA to India, women and LGBTI+ responded first to the conditions of exploitation that were imposed under the pretext of the COVID pandemic. These resistances, which continue all over the world today, should be expanded with international solidarity, and the borderless solidarity of women and LGBTI+ should meet with our Afghan comrades. It should not be forgotten; SOLIDARITY WITHOUT BORDERS!

Down with Patriarchy, Homophobia and Transphobia!

Down with Imperialism and All Kinds of Reactionism!

Long live the Union of Women and LGBTI+!

TKP-ML Communist Union of Women

August 2021