Commander Kaftar (22/52)

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The only known female Mujahideen commander, Kaftar, was once the leader of a 600-strong armed force. Today she can’t even leave the safe house where she is staying as a guest along with her granddaughter. Her enemies, mostly from the neighboring village, are looking for her to settle an old score. According to local accounts, her husband failed to avenge the murder of a relative – Bibi, as she is called by her eight children, took matters into her own hands and soon after enlisted with the Jamiyat-e-Islami forces of Ahmad Shah Massoud’s forces at the height of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the early 80’s. Born in Bahglan province, Kaftar is proud to have never surrendered to the Taliban – in fact, her area of operations never fell to the militants onslaught. Like many other Jihadi commanders, Kaftar surrendered her weapons as part of the UN Disbandment of Illegal Armed Groups program (DIAG) – however, she kept some small arms for herself and her personal guards. One of these weapons is her Russian-made Makarov pistol, which she always carries on a holster under her shoulder. <br />
Like many other warlords (and former Mujahideen) in Afghanistan, Kaftar used the power of the gun for extortion and self-enrichment. Several residents of her native village of Khoza claim that she is responsible for at least ten deaths along with demanding tax money and extortion from the locals in order to fund her operations. Like many other warlords in Afghanistan, the central and local governments have not made any effort to bring her to justice.
The only known female Mujahideen commander, Kaftar, was once the leader of a 600-strong armed force. Today she can’t even leave the safe house where she is staying as a guest along with her granddaughter. Her enemies, mostly from the neighboring village, are looking for her to settle an old score. According to local accounts, her husband failed to avenge the murder of a relative – Bibi, as she is called by her eight children, took matters into her own hands and soon after enlisted...
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