Malalai Joya's Non-War Path
Malalai Joya, a 31-year-old activist and politician, was once called “the bravest woman in Afghanistan” by the BBC.
During the Taliban years, she defied her country’s rulers by running underground girls’ schools. After the Taliban’s fall, she helped start an orphanage and a medical clinic, and eventually became the youngest member of Afghanistan’s legislature.
She has been fearless in taking on the warlords who populate the government of Hamid Karzai—declared the presidential victor Monday after a runoff election was canceled—so much so that in 2007, her political opponents voted to suspend her from parliament on the grounds that she had “insulted” the institution.
Calling for her reinstatement, six female Nobel Peace Prize laureates compared her to Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi, describing her as “a model for women everywhere seeking to make the world more just.”