Among the important concerns that should be raised about the proposed ceasefire between the Trump administration and the Taliban—and the possible withdrawal of U.S. troops—is the future of women in Afghanistan.
There remains an unacceptable risk that without U.S. forces there to uphold U.S. interests and values, the Taliban will resume its unacceptable treatment of Afghan women. For example, Ryan Crocker, who served as ambassador to six Muslim countries including Afghanistan, argues that although women made extraordinary gains in education, business, in the legislature, and elsewhere in society, those gains are fragile and only possible if the United States defends core values, such as women’s rights. Instead, the current framework, which was reached without the involvement of the Afghan government, feels like a surrender, Crocker argues. What makes this surrender particularly grave is what is going to happen to Afghan women after we leave.This article was originally published in The National Interest.