The Women of the Afghanistan War

The present war in Afghanistan, now nearly 12 years old, has affected the lives of millions of women. Many have been victimized; others have played the roles of soldiers, insurgents, politicians, caregivers, and much more. NATO nations have sent thousands of female troops into the conflict, assigned to combat teams as well as support positions. And the women of Afghanistan have been caught in attacks from all sides -- restricted by conservative laws, traumatized by bombings, and victimized at home. According to the UN, the rate of violence against Afghan women is on the rise, even as the number of civilian casualties have been dropping. As western nations begin their draw-down, training and literacy programs are ramping up, in the hopes for a stronger role for the women of Afghanistan after 2014. The photos here are part of the ongoing series here on Afghanistan.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Denis Balibouse / Reuters

    Photos of the Week: 4/18-4/24

    This week we have images of a Chilean volcano, migrants shipwrecked in the Mediterranean, the "Blue Forest" in Belgium,  Kim Jong Un atop Mt Paektu, the Boston Marathon, Orcas hunting on a Patagonian beach, Saudi attacks on Yemen, tule elk along California's coastline, and much more.

  • Omar Havana/Getty Images

    Nepal After the Earthquake

    A magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Nepal early on Saturday, centered 10 miles below the surface, less than 50 miles from the capital of Kathmandu. At least 1,100 are already reported to have been killed by the quake and subsequent avalanches triggered in the Himalayas.

  • Smithsonian.com

    Winners of the 2014 Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

    The editors of Smithsonian magazine have announced the winners of their 12th annual photo contest, selected from more than 26,500 entries.

  • Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images

    The Eruption of Chile's Calbuco Volcano

    Chile's Calbuco volcano erupted on Wednesday, spewing a giant funnel of ash high into the sky over a sparsely populated, mountainous area, triggering a red alert. Authorities ordered an evacuation for a 10-kilometer (six-mile) radius around the volcano.

Join the Discussion