Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Afghan Women and the Media - Is Their Story Being Told? - huffingtonpost

This past March, Pat Mitchell, President and CEO of The Paley Center for Media, hosted a round table discussion in conjunction with the U.S. - Afghan Women's Council. The focus was to examine how to support Afghan women in media. The agenda also addressed the type of stories about Afghan women that continue to grab the headlines - when stories make it to the public's awareness.

A recurrent theme was the need for reports of productive developments to come out of Afghanistan, to balance the "acid throwing stories." At the Diane von Furstenberg Awards, held at the United Nations shortly after the Paley event, I interviewed Sadiqa Basiri, who was being honored for her work as the founder of the Oruj Learning Center. She concurred emphatically. "In the west," she said, "there is only one story. Burquas."

She mentioned that Afghan women had the right to vote in 1919, before women in the United Sates. She said, "The rights are in the Constitution, but not implemented. They are just done nominally."

The media needs to keep vigilant tabs on how the Afghan government deals with women's issues. As Basiri noted, "It's not the top stuff for Karzai." She related a story about a meeting he was suppose to have with women on March 8th, but then asked to reschedule to March 7th. Despite the change to accommodate his calendar, he didn't show up. The person who came on his behalf gave no explanation. One thousand women were in attendance, waiting. Afghan Women and the Media - Is Their Story Being Told?

Afghans believe US is funding Taliban Daniella Peled Comment ... - Guardian


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