The 46-year-old actress and activist joined the social networking site on Friday and made her first post a photo of a letter sent to her by an Afghan girl.
‘This is a letter I was sent from a teenage girl in Afghanistan,’ she wrote alongside an image of the letter.
Taking action: Angelina Jolie, 46, made her Instagram debut with a moving letter sent to her from a teenage girl in Afghanistan, who wrote about the Taliban taking over the country after US forces withdrew; seen in 2019
‘Right now, the people of Afghanistan are losing their ability to communicate on social media and to express themselves freely,’ she continued. ‘So I’ve come on Instagram to share their stories and the voices of those across the globe who are fighting for their basic human rights.’
The teenage girl expressed a desire to continue her education in the heartbreaking letter, even as she feared that the Taliban would curtail those opportunities.
‘Some people say they talibans change [sic],’ she wrote, ‘but I do not think so Because they have a very bad past.’
A source told People that Jolie joined Instagram to help spread awareness about the potential oppression of women in Afghanistan as their own abilities to communicate are being cut off.
‘Right now, the people of Afghanistan are losing their ability to communicate on social media and to express themselves freely,’ Jolie wrote
Speaking up’Angie felt compelled to join in a moment when women and young people in Afghanistan are losing the ability to communicate on social media and express themselves freely,’ a source told People
‘Angie felt compelled to join in a moment when women and young people in Afghanistan are losing the ability to communicate on social media and express themselves freely,’ the source said. ‘From her point of view, if she’s able to be a part of the effort to amplify their voices, then she felt it was reason enough to join and use her platform.’
The girl also wrote about how it was harder to go to school with the Taliban patrolling, and how much safer she felt before they were back in power.
She also worried that her school would be closed down on their order.
The teenager feared Afghanistan would go back to the ‘past 20 years,’ to a time when women had ‘no rights,’ when she said they were expected to work at home and had lost their ‘freedom.’
Covered up: Jolie included a photo of Afghan women who were clothed head-to-toe in burqas
Jolie included a photo of Afghan women who were clothed head-to-toe in burqas.
In addition to sharing the young woman’s story, she also recounted her brief experiences in the Middle Eastern country.
‘I was on the border of Afghanistan two weeks before 9/11, where I met Afghan refugees who had fled the Taliban. This was twenty years ago,’ she began.
‘It is sickening to watch Afghans being displaced yet again out of the fear and uncertainty that has gripped their country.
‘To spend so much time and money, to have blood shed and lives lost only to come to this, is a failure almost impossible to understand,’ she continued.
On the ground: She recounted being on the ‘border of Afghanistan two weeks before 9/11’ and meeting refugees ‘who had fled the Taliban’; seen in 2018 in Brussels, Belgium
She described the way Afghan refugees were treated ‘like a burden’ as ‘sickening’ and said they could do so much more ‘for themselves’ with the proper ‘tools and respect.’
Jolie was also inspired by ‘meeting so many women and girls who not only wanted an education, but fought for it.’
‘Like others who are committed, I will not turn away. I will continue to look for ways to help. And I hope you’ll join me,’ she concluded.
American troops in Afghanistan are now confined to running Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, where American citizens and Afghans have been rushing to exit the country amid a full-scale Taliban takeover in recent days.
The date for the US military to leave Afghanistan was originally set for May 1 by former President Donald Trump in a deal he signed with the Taliban, though President Joe Biden announced in April that he was pushing the final date to September.
The president’s military advisors informed him that there would be ‘weeks or months’ left to get Afghans who had helped the US out of the country following the September withdrawal, but they appear not to have counted on the weakness of the Afghan military, which almost immediately crumbled and failed to put up a fight against Taliban forces that quickly seized most of the country’s cities.
On the ground: She described the way Afghan refugees were treated ‘like a burden’ as ‘sickening’ and said they could do so much more ‘for themselves’ with the proper ‘tools and respect’; Jolie seen in 2019 in London
In a speech over the weekend, President Biden reiterated that the timetable for exiting Afghanistan had largely been set by his predecessor.
He admitted the US was taken off guard by the swiftness of the Taliban takeover and described scenes of mass panic at the Kabul airport as ‘gut-wrenching.’
Still, he said he was confident that the move to leave Afghanistan was the best possible option for the United States and that it was always going to be a difficult process.
‘The developments of the past week reinforced that ending US military involvement in Afghanistan was the right decision. … I stand squarely behind my decision. After 20 years, I’ve learned the hard way that there was never a good time to withdraw U.S. forces.’
On defense: In a speech over the weekend, President Biden reiterated that the timetable for exiting Afghanistan had largely been set by his predecessor and defended it as the best option; seen August 18 in Washington, D.C.
The Taliban has claimed in recent days that it is a more moderate force than the one that ruled Afghanistan in the 1990s.
It claims that women will still be able to attend school, though they will have to be covered in clothing from head to toe.
However, the Taliban has previously required women to be separated from men who aren’t part of their family, so it seems unlikely that they’ll be able to return to school or work if they can’t be in the same room as male students and coworkers.