U.S. Supported Pipeline Will Continue, Despite Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan
Despite promises from oil companies to hold off on a $1.9 billion gas pipeline until there is a recognized government and peace in Afghanistan, Pakistan officials stated that the agreement between the nations is very close to being formalized. The pipeline will travel 105 miles in Turkmenistan, 462 in Afghanistan and 328 in Pakistan, pumping oil from a gas field in Daulatabad with a reserve of 25 trillion cubic feet.
Pakistan officials met directly with the Taliban militia rebels who have taken over much of Afghanistan. Pakistan’s Petroleum and Natural Resources Minister Chaudhry Nisar stated, “I convinced Afghans that this particular project was most important for Afghanistan for a number of reasons. If this project goes through, it will bring Afghanistan and most importantly, their government, on the international energy map.”
The Taliban met with Unocal, a United States oil and gas company, and decided to go ahead with the project. Unocal holds 46.5 percent of the stake in the line, and has begun training of Afghan men in the U.S. to build the pipeline.
The Feminist Majority, other women’s organizations and human rights groups worry that the pipeline, which would earn the Taliban $50 to $100 million a year, will lead to recognition of the Taliban government. The militia group has initiated a war of gender apartheid, banning women and girls from working, going to school, and from leaving their homes without wearing a “burqa,” a debilitating head-to-toe garment.
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .