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Bibi Aisha

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Name  Bibi Aisha

Bibi Aisha smiling while wearing a black hijab and a colorful dress

Similar  Steve McCurry , Afghan Girl , Jodi Bieber

Patients of courage bibi aisha

Bibi Aisha (Pashto: بي بي عایشه‎; Bibi is a term of respect meaning "Lady"; born Aisha Mohammadzai, legal name in the United States: Aesha Mohammadzai) is an Afghan woman whose mutilated face appeared on the cover of Time magazine in summer 2010.


Bibi Aisha smiling while wearing a black hijab and a butterfly necklace

Her story first appeared in The Daily Beast in December 2009, which prompted doctors to write in, offering to help her for free. The Grossman Burn Foundation in California pledged to perform reconstructive surgery and began organizing for her visa in the early spring of 2010. Diane Sawyer of ABC News originally covered her ordeal in March 2010 and revisited her story again in 2014.

Bibi Aisha smiling while combing her hair and wearing a black blazer and blue dress

Bibi Aisha Unveils New Nose

Life in Afghanistan

Bibi Aisha featured in Time Magazine while wearing violet hijab

Aisha suffered early in life, losing her mother and forced into marriage as a teenager. In a practice known as baad, Aisha's father promised her to a Taliban fighter when she was 12 years old as compensation for a killing that a member of her family had committed. She was married at 14 and subjected to abuse. At 18 she fled the abuse but was caught by police, jailed for five months, and returned to her family. Her father returned her to her in-laws. To take revenge on her escape, her father-in-law, husband, and three other family members took Aisha into the mountains, cut off her nose and her ears, and left her to die. Aisha was later rescued by aid workers and the U.S. military. Some sources disputed the role of any members of the Taliban in her mutilation.

Appearance in Time magazine

Bibi Aisha smiling while wearing a black hijab and a butterfly necklace

Aisha was featured on the August 2010 cover of Time magazine, and in the corresponding article, "Afghan Women and the Return of the Taliban." The cover image generated enormous controversy. The image and the accompanying cover title, "What Happens if We Leave Afghanistan," fueled debate about the merits of the Afghan War.

Bibi Aisha smiling while wearing a black blouse and animal print scarf

The photo was taken by the South African photographer Jodi Bieber and was awarded the World Press Photo Award for 2010. The image of Aisha is sometimes compared to the Afghan Girl photograph of Sharbat Gula taken by Steve McCurry.

Life in the United States

Shortly after Time's cover ran in August 2010, Aisha was flown to the United States to receive free reconstructive surgery. After arriving in California, she psychologically regressed into performing fake seizures, tantrums, and self-harm that required hospitalization. Surgeons concluded that she was not "emotionally prepared" to handle the patient responsibilities in the reconstructive surgery process, and her psychologist diagnosed her with borderline personality disorder. While her reconstructive surgery was delayed, she was taken in by the Women for Afghan Women shelter in Queens, New York, but she caused many problems for the staff and other residents, including roommates hired by the shelter to live with her. Aisha's condition improved with a change in medications, and the seizures stopped.

Later, Aisha's psychological condition improved enough that she was able to cease taking medications to control her behavior. Starting in 2012, preparations to do a multistage facial reconstruction for Aisha began. Her forehead was expanded over the course of several months to provide enough tissue to build a new nose. The structure for her new nose was built using cartilage from her own body and tissue from her left hand was also used for the inner lining. Aisha underwent a total of 12 completed surgeries.

In 2014 ABC News revisited Aisha and revealed her new nose that has altered her appearance. Aisha has been adopted by an Afghan-American couple, and lives in Maryland. She studies English and mathematics and aspires to be a police officer.


Bibi Aisha Wikipedia