Laura Hershey: Writer, Poet, Activist, Consultant Rotating Header Image

War and Disability in Afghanistan

As the U.S. continues to escalate its war in/on Afghanistan, inevitably casualties — both deaths and permanent disabilities — will continue to increase. Some returning American soldiers with disabilities become media darlings, “wounded warriors” competing in Paralympic events, while the majority struggle to adapt to their changed conditions, and to find jobs and needed support services.

It’s even more complicated for the “other” side’s casualties. Today I ran across this article on the website Voices for Creative Nonviolence.

It’s a well-written, mostly pity-free profile of a young Afghan man who became disabled as a result of U.S. air attacks. He is in Pakistan now, working hard to rehabilitate with the goal of reintegrating back into his own community someday, but the war is a major barrier to this goal.

This article offers insight into day-to-day issues facing ordinary disabled people in different parts of the world. And it manages to avoid the melodrama that peace advocates sometimes invoke when talking about disabilities caused by war.

Even as we fight our own critical battles for civil rights and essential support services, disability rights activists must be aware of the impact of our government’s military actions on people with disabilities across the globe.

Read the article here.

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