How far would you go to win an election?
I don't think anyone I know in any party would ever betray women in the way that Afghan President Hamid Karzai has done. In order to get the support of Shia men in the forthcoming Presidential election in Afghanistan, he has quietly allowed the enactment of this law. Incredibly, it states that men can starve their wives if they refuse to have sex with them. This is supposed somehow to be better than the original law which Karzai shelved in April which removed the requirement to consent within marriage and stated that women were obliged to have sex every 4 days.
This law is like a game of cat and mouse in which the mouse is bound, gagged and tied to the cat's food bowl. If a woman decides to say to her husband "Stuff you, I'll go and get a job and buy my own food", she can't because she's not allowed to work without her husband's permission. If she decides to leave an abusive husband, then she'll lose her children as husbands and grandfathers automatically have custody. This is bad enough on its own, but if you look at this blog posting from around a year and a half ago, you'll see that it alleges that between 60 - 80% of all marriages are forced, often on very young girls.
So, tell me, please, how is forced sex on threat of being denied food any different from rape.
It's not enough to say that Karzai is the best of a bad bunch. Our soldiers, 201 of them now, have lost their lives trying to keep him in power during an awful war of attrition with a Taleban that shows no signs of going away any time soon.
I am just so appalled that these are the values our men have been sent to defend and I think that the Government really ought to start thinking about what it's going to do to ensure that this evil and barbaric law is repealed as soon as possible.