International Peacekeeping Troops to Increase in Afghanistan
For several years, feminists have urged that the number of international peacekeeping (ISAF) troops in Afghanistan be increased and that they be deployed throughout the nation. The US has now announced that in the summer of 2006 it will reduce its troop presence from 19,000 to 16,500 and transfer power in southern Afghanistan to ISAF, which is being led by NATO troops, reported the Washington Post. ISAF will increase its numbers from 9,000 to 15,000. The Taliban presence is stronger in the Southern region, which includes Kandahar, the former Taliban capitol.
The US also announced it will cut Afghan funding from $1 billion in 2005 to $600 million in 2006. This, combined with the announced US troop cutback, is worrying Afghans that the US may be, once again, deserting Afghanistan as it did in the early 1990s after the Soviet defeat. However, Congress could increase the Afghan funding in 2006 in supplemental funding packages as it has in the past.
“The Bush Administration has promised a Marshall Plan for Afghanistan but has delivered much, much less,” said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority. “Electricity is in short supply even in Kabul, girls schools are still being attached by Taliban-like forces, the homeless number in the hundreds of thousands, and poppy growth and its illicit drug trade has increased.”
1/23/2015 #HeForShe Campaign Launches Pilot Effort Aimed at Institutional Equality - The United Nations' gender equality campaign #HeForShe has launched a new program called IMPACT 10X10X10.
United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, together with UN Women Executive DirectorPhumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, introduced the one-year pilot effort aimed at encouraging corporations, universities, and governments to play an active role in enhancing women's empowerment and equality in Davos, Switzerland today at the World Economic Forum.
"Women need to be equal participants in our homes, societies, in our governments, and in our workplaces," Watson said.
First introduced in September, HeForShe is a solidarity movement that calls on men and boys to confront gender inequalities that face women and girls globally. . . .
1/22/2015 BREAKING: House to Vote on Abortion Coverage Ban - After they were forced to scrap plans for a 20-week abortion ban, House Republican leaders decided late last night to instead ram through a vote today on a different extreme anti-abortion bill.
House Republicans are now pushing HR 7, a bill promoted as a ban on federal funding of abortion that would actually prevent women from using their own money to purchase health insurance that includes abortion care. . . .
1/22/2015 House Cancels Abortion Ban After GOP Congresswomen Drop Support - House Republicans cancelled plans to vote on a 20-week ban on abortion after Republican Congresswomen removed their names publicly as co-sponsors of the bill.
The vote on the unconstitutional 20-week ban had originally been scheduled for today, the anniversary of Roe v. . . .