10 Years Is Not Enough for Sahar Gul’s Rapists

Imagine being forced to marry a 30 year-old man at the age of 13. You’ve lived little of your actual childhood and have yet to realize or have any true sexual experiences. Now imagine that your husband is a member of the Afghan Army and he consistently rapes you. And then, when you fail to get pregnant, your in-laws lock you in a basement for months at a time, destroying your nails, tying you up, and torturing you with hot pokers.

Shocking life, wouldn’t you agree? But it’s all reality for Sahar Gal, an Afghan girl, who spent the past year being physically attacked, verbally abused, and forced into starvation by her husband and two older men. 

“While going to the bathroom they used to beat me a lot. I was crying all this time,” she told CNN. “When they put electric shocks on my feet, I felt like I was going to die at that moment. I screamed and that’s how our neighbors realized there was something happening. For one day and night I was unconscious, feeling dead.”

This past weekend Sahar Gal was in court to hear the sentencing to the men that tortured and abused her for several years. The two in-laws received 10 year sentences while her husband is still on the loose. Sahar Gal is among the 1,026 cases of violence against women registered by the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission. That’s to say among the many of the many abuse cases that go untold as well.

What hurts so much about Sahar’s case is that it appears that violence against women is not considered an important. Women that are raped undergo a period of violation that can’t be taken back, and often men, especially in the global hemisphere, get to runaway with the crime. They are rarely ever forced to meet their wrongdoings in the eye and admit to them. What will these horrid men learn in ten years that they won’t do again to another woman once their out? Or even worse, to other men once their deprived in a Afghan prison?

Sahar believes that they should be treated just as she was.

“They should be punished in the prison. They hurt my eyes and pulled out my nail and hair, and the same should be done to them. whatever they did to me, the same should be done to them,” she said.

We agree. Maybe a little annihilation to their balls will help them realize how much she suffered.

These men have brought so much hurt and pain to this young girl that it even makes us twist in our stomachs to even imagine the thought of young black women being raped. But it is the reality; millions of young sisters, white, black, brown, yellow, you name it are being forced into relationships of convenience or arranged marriages so that men can fulfill their sexual needs. Women become sex slaves, immediately reduced because of their gender. It’s a global right to not be treated as a slave; the United Nations Deceleration of Rights states in Article Four that “No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.”

What Sahar Gul makes us realize is that sex slavery and violence against women and children is more than just a surface level issue; it is a deeply problematic humanistic thought that raids itself on the minds of heartless men (and some women). It is clear that on a broader scale, more must be done to equalize a female’s quality in the world, to prove our worth. Because there are way too many Sahar Gul’s out there to not champion social justice for women and end this violent tirade against us.


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