“I spent years working against extremists doing counterterrorism work in the FBI. And I have to tell you that that sort of a diverse cross-section of people is exactly what you see in the population of adherents, people who are attracted to extremist rhetoric and extremist movements. That is exactly what you see. When we looked at those Americans who traveled to Syria for the purpose of joining the Islamic State when you put all of those faces and names down in one place, you had doctors, lawyers, you had people who were Muslim their entire life and some people who had just converted only months earlier. You had rich people, poor people, men, women, of every ethnic variety. So I think that’s actually common to extremist groups. Some people are very vulnerable to and drawn into that core lie of any extremist movement, and that is exactly what we’re seeing now with these — this particular group of Trump supporters. They have invested, on an emotional and spiritual level, in this grievance that the election was stolen from them and they seem to be completely manipulated by that propaganda.”
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Mental health crisis spikes among Afghan women after Taliban regained control two years ago
The women of Afghanistan are suffering a mental health crisis since the Taliban regained power two years ago. According to a joint report from three U.N. agencies released Tuesday, approximately 70% of women experience feelings of anxiety, isolation and depression.
The numbers continue to rise, as there has already been a significant jump between April and June of this year alone, with an increase from 57% the preceding quarter.
The report, conducted by U.N. Women, the International Organization for Migration and the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, interviewed women online, in-person and in group consultations as well as individual telesurveys.
592 Afghan women in 22 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces took part in the study. The Associated Press reports:
They have barred women from most areas of public life and work and banned girls from going to school beyond the sixth grade. They have prohibited Afghan women from working at local and non-governmental organizations. The ban was extended to employees of the United Nations in April.
Opportunities to study continued to shrink as community-based education by international organizations was banned and home-based schooling initiatives were regularly shut down by the de facto authorities — a term use by the U.N. for the Taliban government.
Afghanistan is the only country in the world with restrictions on female education and the rights of Afghan women and children are on the agenda of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
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