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Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai is a 14 year old activist living in the Swat valley of Pakistan.  Her mission is to see that girls have access to education.  She and her father have publicly defied the Taliban who have moved into the valley and now she has paid a price.

The Taliban shot her in the head and neck.  Not only that but if she lives and continues to protest, they vow to do it again because she is a “secular-minded lady”.

The NYTimes has more:

Ms. Yousafzai came to public attention in 2009 as the Pakistani Taliban swept through Swat, a picturesque valley once famed for its culture of music and tolerance and as a destination for honeymooning couples.

Her father ran one of the last schools to defy Taliban orders to end female education. As an 11-year-old, his daughter Malala — named after a mythic female figure in Pashtun culture — wrote an anonymous blog documenting her experiences for the British Broadcasting Corporation.

“I had a terrible dream yesterday with military helicopters and the Taliban,” she wrote in one post titled “I Am Afraid.”

Later in 2009, the army launched a sweeping operation against the Taliban in the area, displacing many militants into neighboring districts or across the border into Afghanistan.

Ms. Yousafzai continued to grow in prominence, becoming a powerful voice for the rights of children in the conflict-affected area. In 2011, she was nominated for an International Children’s Peace Prize; later, Yousaf Raza Gilani, the prime minister at the time, awarded her Pakistan’s first National Youth Peace Prize.

In recent months, she led a delegation of children’s rights activists, sponsored by Unicef, that made representations to provincial politicians in Peshawar.

“We found her to be very bold, and it inspired every one of us,” said another student in the group, Fatima Aziz, 15.

“She had this vision, big dreams, that she was going to come into politics and bring about change,” said Ms. Minallah, the documentary maker.

She won a national peace prize last year.  Right now, she’s in critical condition and has been transported to another hospital for treatment.  Let’s hope she pulls through so she can keep helping her friends and defy the enemies of women.

It looks like this assassination attempt, where a couple other girls were also wounded, may have just been the tipping point with the Pakistanis against the Taliban.

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8 Responses

  1. These are supposedly “different” Taliban than what our “ally” Pakistan is sheltering/supplying/training in the Tribal Areas right next to Afghanistan, but they share the same basic outlook on things and stuff. These are the same basic sort of Taliban who will return to partial or full power in Afghanistan once we wear out and leave.

    One has to hope that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization will see fit to arm and supply the Afghanistan ethnic groups which made up the Northern Alliance so at least those groups can at least keep the Pashtun based Taliban out of “Northern Alliance-stan”.

    If she hopefully recovers, could anyone really blame her if she decides she has had enough of the struggle? If she hopefully recovers and decides to keep going, one hopes the nonTaliban majority can somehow “torture” Pakistan’s ISI-Army government into
    applying as much suppression by any means effective
    to stop this Taliban activity and make it stay stopped.

    • I think the Pashtun are an ethnic group, not all of whom are Taliban.
      This shooting might be just the thing to get Pakistan off its butt. Horrible that it takes something like this. But in any case, the Bushies made a mess out of the entire region. I think only the locals are going to be able to fix it at this point.

      • Yes, the Pashtun are an ethnic group, evenly divided by the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Many of them were/are not Taliban and even suffered from Taliban oppression and atrocities. But I believe that almost all of the Taliban are Pashtun. I am not aware (but someone who knows more can surely correct me) of many or even hardly any Tajiks/Uzbeks/Hazaras/etc. being Taliban. ( I read recently a comment on a NaCap thread from someone who seemed to be from Pakistan claiming that the governing ISI of Pakistan assassinated hundreds of traditional tribal/village leaders/elders in the
        Frontier Tribal Areas to assassinate their opposition to hosting the heavy influx of Taliban and Haqani-Network people which the ISI wanted to foster and support in that area for the eventual reconquest of Afghanistan),

        One almost suspects the BushCo Administration of deliberate malice in engineering the eventual self-destruction/collapse of the joint American/Northern Alliance victory in Afghanistan to begin with. Just as one almost suspects the BushCo Administration of facilitating bin Laden’s escape from Tora Bora accidentally-on-purpose as a quiet gesture of thanks for a “job well done” (the 9/11 attacks).

        Yousafzai reads almost like a Pashtun name itself. If it is, then
        Malala Yousafzai is one of those non-Taliban Pashtuns who is the victim of Pashtun Taliban oppression and atrocities.

  2. I was reading about her blog for the first time just a while ago on the BBC, thinking, “What a wonderful kid.” And then a couple of hours later, this horrible news.

    The BBC reporter said “even in blood-soaked Pakistan” this had sparked outrage. Like the rest of the world, I hope she recovers completely, and I hope it really does prove a tipping point for the Pakis.

    Hard to imagine what more it could take to understand that fundies aren’t religious. They’re just thugs with an excuse.

    • I read somewhere that she is being transferred to Canada because brain swelling is compromising her spinal cord. I can’t even imagine what kind of brain damage she’s going to have.

  3. Any religion that treats women or non-believers as second class or lower needs exterminated.

    • Hopefully by educating or or otherwise bringing the practitiioners up out of that approach.

      • No, as in stepping on a cockroach.

        If they don’t adhere to the rights laid out in our Constitution strip them of their tax exempt status. Followed by confiscation and destruction of all their religious structures if they object. Treat them like we treat the Klu Klux Klan they are no different.

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