Few things symbolize progress in the fight against poverty better than the face of an educated girl. And I was fortunate enough to see hundreds of them during a trip to Afghanistan in 2006. Those faces, eager and alert, lit up the courtyard of a new school built to educate 1,000 girls in central Afghanistan's Bamian province.
Gone were the days of Taliban rule, when girls were forbidden to study and women weren't allowed to teach. Afghanistan's future leaders could learn -- out in the open.
Perhaps that is why last month's brutal attack on a group of Afghan schoolgirls in the southern city of Kandahar was so heartbreaking. The students were walking to school in uniforms. Two men wielding water pistols drove by on motorcycles and sprayed battery acid.
They took aim at that same symbol of progress, the one that has inspired me and so many others. ...
Monday, December 22, 2008
This from the Washington Post, Photo from the BBC: