He Could Have Beaten His Wife In Afghanistan, But Here She Fought Back. And Lost Her Kids.

By Stephen Magagnini
The Sacramento Bee

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Basira Haidari has became a symbol of resolve for her neighbors in Skyview Villa, where about 50 other Afghan families have settled. She has urged other Afghan women in the area to report domestic violence to the police. Her Facebook name is “Moon Brave.”

The Sacramento Bee

Basira Haidari arrived in Sacramento three years ago from Afghanistan and vowed to stand up to her husband if he abused her. That pledge broke her family apart.

Basira had watched women in Kabul beaten or even killed for speaking their minds or marrying the person they chose. She wanted to take advantage of her new freedoms in the U.S. but was unfamiliar with the rules here.

Basira said she first witnessed family violence against women as a child and has resisted becoming a victim of it.

She and her husband Omid moved to a Skyview Villa apartment in Arden Arcade with their daughter Raheel. She gave birth to her son Subhan about two years later. As she had feared, arguments with Omid turned physical, and he recalled they often argued about little things.

On Jan. 22, he said, his wife took $300 from his wallet without asking him. He confronted her and slapped her in the face, he said. She hit him back.

“She was trying to make me stop and I was trying to make her stop shouting,” he said. “Because we are humans, we all make mistakes. Everybody has anger.”

The fighting escalated. The next day, she called 911 for help. She didn’t know how to get a restraining order against her husband. She didn’t know her case would be turned over to Sacramento County Child Protective Services.

She didn’t know she would lose the custody of her children.

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