Profiles in Bravery

by Joshua Foust on 6/11/2011 · 2 comments

I knew we needed to make sure that not an inch of our skin was showing, so I pulled maxi dresses, harem pants, and oversized tunics from my closet. We would be wearing headscarves every day. Shoes would be combat boots. Practicality was key. Never have I ever wanted to blend in more. Our week in Afghanistan would consist of visiting women’s prisons, meeting with artisans who would offer job training to prisoners, and having think-tank sessions with progressive ladies fighting for women’s rights in the region. We would also be making a stop to see the boys and girls in uniform. As a fervent supporter of The USO, I had suggested to Karen that we set up a visit at one of the bases. Her reply? “Oh, I’ll just call Petraeus.” As in General David Petraeus. It turns out that prior to becoming a travel-anywhere-that-injustice-is-happening journalist, Karen once worked at the Pentagon. With guys like Petraeus. And she knew that he would love to have some ladies come and visit the base.

Actress Sophia Bush, writing about her plans for a week-long trip to Afghanistan in Marie Claire. As it turns out, Bush realized—I guess?—that she had the same last name as George W. Bush (no relation, she assures us), and so she scrubbed the trip, choosing instead to skype with someone else who will be in meetings with wealthy Kabulis and write about what their chats.

Honestly, I’m most surprised she had harem pants and oversized tunics just sitting around her apparently room-sized closet, just waiting for adventure. But that could just be me.


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This post was written by...

– author of 1848 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Joshua Foust is a Fellow at the American Security Project and the author of Afghanistan Journal: Selections from Registan.net. His research focuses primarily on Central and South Asia. Joshua is a correspondent for The Atlantic and a columnist for PBS Need to Know. Joshua appears regularly on the BBC World News, Aljazeera, and international public radio. Joshua's writing has appeared in the Columbia Journalism Review, Foreign Policy’s AfPak Channel, the New York Times, Reuters, and the Christian Science Monitor. Follow him on twitter: @joshuafoust

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{ 2 comments }

CE June 11, 2011 at 5:48 pm

…If you don’t already own a “NOT GUILTY” T-shirt, you can order one here and support Afghan women from the comfort of your offices, or couches, as well. Much Love.

Malalai Joya would not be amused.

the lost flaneur June 11, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Wow, America is hitting us with Bombshells now?!

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