Tom Morello writes open letter calling for evacuation of female guitar students in Afghanistan
Following recent violence and political strife in Afghanistan, Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello wrote an open letter calling for the withdrawal of young guitarists from the war-torn country.
The 57-year-old musician, Harvard University student and political activist sent the appeal to Billboard through his friend, guitarist and teacher, Lanny Cordola. Morello believes young guitarists are at great risk after the recent Taliban takeover in Kabul.
Cordola, who in 2015 founded a girls’ music school in the country called Girl With a Guitar, started the program to help girls who had little or no other opportunities in the area. According to Billboard, Cordola is in Pakistan to bring his 12 students and their families from Afghanistan.
Cordola founded the school through his non-profit organization, Children of miraculous love. According to Billboard, the school has taught nearly 200 students. They learned Western songs and learned under the guidance of male teachers, which put them both in danger under the Taliban.
“I am writing on behalf of some very special girls in Afghanistan who are in grave danger,” says Morello. “[Girl With a Guitar] welcomes street orphans and other girls who have suffered significant trauma and uses music as a tool for rehabilitation and a way to overcome their problems, their stories and their hopes. I had the honor to collaborate with these wonderful children. Since the Taliban took power, their school has been destroyed and the girls are in hiding. They are at extreme risk as they are widely known to have played Western music and were educated by an American teacher. Anything you could do to help save their lives would be greatly appreciated.
Read more here.
Photo by Eitan Miskevich