U.N.: Nearly 90 percent of Afghan women suffer from domestic abuse
Qur'an 4:34: "Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women). So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret that which Allah hath guarded. As for those from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them."
Allah says you can hit your wife. These are the consequences. "Afghan women hiding for their lives," by Atia Abawl for CNN, September 24:
KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Shameen's brown eyes seem lost as she thinks about the one day she wants to forget, but it is all she can think about.
Still traumatized, she recounts the events that led her to a safe house in Kabul.
She was raped and nearly stabbed to death by her husband just seven days before we met her.
Her lips are quivering and her eyes full of fear.
"He forced himself on me," she said. "All I could do was scream."
She was married off 15 years ago when she was a teenager.
Throughout those years she was tortured and abused, suffering daily beatings with an electrical wire or the metal end of a hammer.
This was her normal life.
"He chased after me with a hammer. He said if I made any noise he would put holes through me," Shameen said.
Shameen and her husband could not conceive a child. And in Afghan society, it seems, the blame always falls on the woman.
After one severe beating, she ran from her home and to the police station. Her husband promised the police he would not attack her anymore, so she gave in and agreed to go back home with him.
Days later, Shameen's husband took her on a trip to visit her sister's grave -- a 15-year-old sister who was burned to death for displeasing her husband.
Shameen says her younger sister was 11 years old when she was forced to marry an older man. He would beat and abuse her until one day he killed her.
As Shameen walked along the graveyard with her husband he took her near a shrine where he forced her to the ground, lifted her burqa and raped her. He then threatened her with a knife and asked her who was going to help her now. She was screaming as he slashed her throat and body.
A passerby saved her.
Now, she has no one to turn to -- not even her own parents. In their eyes, she has brought them shame, an offense punishable by death. [...]
Afghanistan is a country where for centuries women have been considered property -- not equals, like the constitution states. They are often beaten, raped and even sold to the highest bidder. There are very few places women can turn to.
Nearly 90 percent of Afghan women suffer from domestic abuse, according to the United Nations Development Fund for Women.
Despite that, there are less than a dozen shelters like this one in Afghanistan, usually run by non-governmental organizations.
Abusers are rarely prosecuted or convicted, and most women are afraid to say anything.
"Their mothers are beaten by their fathers. They're beaten by their fathers, by their brothers. It's a way of life," said Manizha Naderi, director of WAW.
Naderi is an Afghan-American who grew up in New York and has returned to Afghanistan to work with other women in hopes of bringing a change, although she said it will take generations.
"They see their mothers being beaten, they see their sisters their aunts, everybody," Naderi said. "So that's what they expect."...