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  • Writer's pictureAli Assareh

Nations that fail women fail.

A wonderful, must-read piece in this week's The Economist, titled "Why nations that fail women fail."

Some incredible stats & points:

- All of the 20 most turbulent countries on the Fragile States index practice polygamy.

- A fifth of the world’s young women are married before the age of 18; a twentieth before 15.

- "Peace talks should include women. Between 1992 and 2019, only 13% of negotiators and 6% of signatories of peace deals were female. Yet peace tends to last longer when women are at the table. This may be because they are more ready to compromise; or perhaps because a room without women implies a stitch-up between the men with guns without input from non-combatants. Liberia got this right and ended a ghastly civil war; Afghanistan’s new rulers have not."

- Researchers at Texas A&M and Brigham Young universities compiled a global index of discriminatory attitudes to women, including sexist family laws, unequal property rights, early marriage for girls, polygamy, bride prices, son preference, violence against women and legal indulgence of it; it turned out to be highly correlated with violent instability in a country.

- "Policymakers should study geopolitics through the prism of sex. That index of sexist customs, had it existed 20 years ago, would have warned them how hard nation-building would be in Afghanistan and Iraq. Today, it suggests that stability cannot be taken for granted in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan or even India."


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