They were not allowed to be treated by male doctors unless accompanied by a male chaperone, which led to illnesses remaining untreated.
They faced public flogging and execution for violations of the Taliban's laws.
Its government is clannish, illegitimate, and staggeringly corrupt.
While the Afghan government has been able to address some of these issues since the Taliban's ouster in 2001, archaic social traditions and deep-seated gender norms have kept much of rural Afghanistan in a medieval state of purgatory.
Perhaps the most deplorable tragedy, one that has actually grown more rampant since 2001, is the practice of bacha bazi — sexual companionship between powerful men and their adolescent boy conscripts.
This phenomenon presents a system of gender reversal in Afghanistan.
Whereas rural Pashtun culture remains largely misogynistic and male-dominated due to deeply-ingrained Islamic values, teenage boys have become the objects of lustful attraction and romance for some of the most powerful men in the Afghan countryside.
It is in a particularly remote area and few people know its exact whereabouts.