Malalai Joya: “A Woman Among Warlords”

(9 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Who Dared to Raise Her Voice!

On October 27th a forum was held at the CUNY’s Center for Place, Culture and Politics. After the forum Grit TV’s Laura Flanders held a discussion with some of the women at the forum and with Malalai Joya who wrote “A Woman Among Warlords: The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Woman Who Dared to Speak Out”

Is a Benevolent Occupation Possible? Discussing Afghanistan

The war in Afghanistan will soon surpass Vietnam as the U.S.’s longest conflict, and yet for much of the past eight years it was overshadowed by the war in Iraq. It was considered both “the Good War” and the “Forgotten War,” but lately has taken center stage in the news once again, as public support has dropped and Tuesday morning Matthew Hoh, a Foreign Service officer and former Marine, became the first U.S. official to resign in protest over the conduct of the war.

Just what is the purpose of the U.S. presence in Afghanistan? Are we really there to protect people from the Taliban and to fight Al-Qaeda? Joining us to discuss are Kristen L. Rouse, founder of Veterans for Afghanistan, Nasrine Gross, President of Roqia Center for Rights, Studies and Education, Yifat Susskind, communications director for MADRE, and Jodie Evans of CodePink, who just returned from Afghanistan.

Laura Flanders with Malalai Joya, Awista Ayub, Nasrine Gross {first 23:30min is the discussion with the other guests then with Malalai leading into the rest of the show}

You can view the Video Here

The next day, the 28th of October, Malalai Joya visited Democracy Now and spoke with Amy Goodman about her book and life in Afghanistan, especially her recent past, as well.

Afghan Democracy Activist Malalai Joya Defies Threats to Challenge US Occupation, Local Warlords

To talk more about Afghanistan, we are joined by Malalai Joya, one of Afghanistan’s leading democracy activists. In 2005, she became the youngest person ever elected to the Afghan parliament. She was suspended in 2007 for her denunciation of warlords and their cronies in government. She has just written her memoir, “A Woman Among Warlords: The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Woman Who Dared to Speak Out”. { includes transcript ]

Malalai Joya’s Book:

Publisher Comments:

Malalai Joya has been called the bravest woman in Afghanistan. At a constitutional assembly in Kabul in 2003, she stood up and denounced her country’s powerful NATO-backed warlords. She was twenty-five years old. Two years later, she became the youngest person elected to Afghanistan’s new Parliament. In 2007, she was suspended from Parliament for her persistent criticism of the warlords and drug barons and their cronies. She has survived four assassination attempts to date, is accompanied at all times by armed guards, and sleeps only in safe houses.

Often compared to democratic leaders such as Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi, this extraordinary young woman was raised in the refugee camps of Iran and Pakistan. Inspired in part by her father’s activism, Malalai became a teacher in secret girls’ schools, holding classes in a series of basements. She hid her books under her burqa so the Taliban couldn’t find them. She also helped establish a free medical clinic and orphanage in her impoverished home province of Farah. The endless wars of Afghanistan have created a generation of children without parents. Like so many others who have lost people they care about, Malalai lost one of her orphans when the girl’s family members sold her into marriage.

While many have talked about the serious plight of women in Afghanistan, Malalai Joya takes us inside the country and shows us the desperate dayto-day situations these remarkable people face at every turn. She recounts some of the many acts of rebellion that are helping to change the country – the women who bravely take to the streets in peaceful protest against their oppression; the men who step forward and claim I am her mahram, so the fundamentalists won’t punish a woman for walking alone; and the families that give their basements as classrooms for female students.

A controversial political figure in one of the most dangerous places on earth, Malalai Joya is a hero for our times, a young woman who refused to be silent, a young woman committed to making a difference in the world, no matter the cost.

“A Woman Among Warlords: The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Woman Who Dared to Speak Out”


  1. I read the transcript of Amy Goodman’s interview with Malalai Joya from your link, and have filed it with other excellent links on Afghan women.  Malalai Joya has guts…..bless her!!!

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