Taliban gunmen shoot 14-year-old girl over activism for education


B00Mer
#1


(Reuters) - A 14-year-old Pakistani schoolgirl campaigner shot by the Taliban had defied threats for years, believing the good work she was doing for her community was her best protection, her father said on Wednesday.

Malala Yousufzai was shot and seriously wounded on Tuesday as she was leaving her school in her hometown in the Swat valley, northwest of the capital, Islamabad.

The Taliban claimed responsibility, saying her promotion of education for girls was pro-Western and she had opposed them.

The shooting has outraged people in a country seemingly inured to extreme violence since a surge in Islamist militancy began after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

"She is candle of peace that they have tried to blow out," said one Pakistani man, Abdul Majid Mehsud, 45, from the violence plagued South Waziristan region.

In the Swat valley, a one-time tourist spot infiltrated by militants from Afghan border bases more than five years ago, her family and community are praying for her survival.

Her father, Ziauddin Yousufzai, who ran a girls' school, said his daughter had wanted to go into politics.

He said that of all the things he loved about her, it was her fairness - her democratic ideals - that he loved the most.

Malala, then a dimpled 11-year-old with dark eyes, shot to fame when she wrote a blog under a pen name for the BBC about living under the rule of the Pakistani Taliban.

The militants, led by a firebrand young preacher, took over her valley through a mixture of violence, intimidation and the failure of the authorities to stand up to them.

Even after the military finally went into action with an offensive in 2009 that swept most of the militants from the valley, it remained a dangerous place.

Malala didn't keep quiet. She campaigned for education for girls and later received Pakistan's highest civilian prize.

Her prominence came at a cost.

"We were being threatened. A couple of times, letters were thrown in our house, that Malala should stop doing what she is doing or the outcome will be very bad," her father, sounding drained and despondent, said by telephone.

But despite the threats, he said he had turned down offers of protection from the security forces.

"We stayed away from that because she is a young female. The tradition here does not allow a female to have men close by," he said.

"NEVER FEARFUL"

Malala had spent many sleepless nights kept awake by gunfire, had been forced to flee her home with her two younger brothers and walked past the headless bodies of those who defied the Taliban.

Her parents also wanted her to have some chance of a normal childhood, her father said.

"We did not want her to be carrying her school books surrounded by bodyguards. She would not have been able to receive education freely," he said.

Her parents thought she would be safe among their neighbors in the town of Mingora, nestled among the snow-capped mountains that earned Swat the nickname of the Switzerland of Pakistan.

"I never imagined that this could happen because Malala is a young innocent girl," her father said. "Whenever there were threats, relatives and friends would tell Malala to take care but Malala was never fearful."

"She would frequently say 'I am satisfied. I am doing good work for my people so nobody can do anything to me'."

Recently, Malala had started to organize a fund to make sure poor girls could go to school, said Ahmed Shah, a family friend and chairman of the Swat Private Schools Association.

"She had planned on making the Malala Education Foundation in Swat," Shah said, adding that the Taliban used to print threats against her in the newspaper.

Classmate Brekhna Rahim said Malala "wished to have enough money and build schools in every village for girls in Swat".

The entire Swat Valley was in shock over the shooting, she said, glued to their televisions and crying as they watched the endlessly repeated scenes of her being stretchered to hospital.

"Women and girls are sad as if they had lost a very close member of the family," Rahim said.

"She was the life of the class," said fellow student, Dure Nayab.

GUNMEN

On Tuesday, a gunman arrived at her school, asking for her by name. He opened fire on her and two classmates on a bus.

Now her father is waiting for her to regain consciousness as she lies swathed in white bandages in a military hospital.

"Doctors are hopeful," he said. "I appeal to the country to pray for her survival."

Ziauddin Yousufzai said the shooting would stop neither him nor his daughter from their work.

He echoed the view of many people who said that the shooting was against Islamic law and against the culture of the ethnic Pashtun region, which forbids the targeting of women.

"We will focus even more on our work with more strength," he said. "If all of us die fighting, we will still not leave this work."

Her classmate Rahim put it another way.

"If the Taliban kill one Malala, they are thousands and thousands more brave girls like Malala in Swat."

source: Pakistani girl shot by Taliban defied threats for years | Reuters
 
Most helpful post: The members here have rated this post as best reply.
#juan
+11
#2  Top Rated Post
Is there anything more cowardly than a group of so called "men", stalking and shooting a fourteen year old girl who
voiced different beliefs?
 
darkbeaver
+3 / -3
#3
Yes there is, a group of so called men offing eighteen or twenty people at a funeral with drone fire triggered from thousands of miles away.
 
earth_as_one
+3
#4
I hope authorities find those responsible and bring them to justice.
 
gerryh
+7
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by darkbeaver View Post

Yes there is, a group of so called men offing eighteen or twenty people at a funeral with drone fire triggered from thousands of miles away.


You're kidding, right? You throw this out in this thread? You really need to put your brain in gear before you post.
 
earth_as_one
#6
I agree with gerryh. Have some respect. I admire courage and bravery. This little girl has more than most.

BTW, Malala Yousafzai stood up for women's education and equal rights. Few people the cajones to put their life on the line for their rights. I hope she makes a full recovery and becomes a doctor as she dreamed.

...the Taliban so feared this 14-year-old girl that they tried to assassinate her. Her supposed offense? Her want of an education and her public advocation for it. ...

...Malala was no ordinary target. She came to public attention three years ago when she wrote a diary for the BBC about life under the Taliban, which controlled Swat from 2007 to 2009 before being dislodged by an Army offensive. Last year, she won a national peace prize.

The Pakistani Taliban was quick and eager to take credit for Tuesday’s attack. Malala “has become a symbol of Western culture in the area; she was openly propagating it,” a spokesman, Ehsanullah Ehsan, told The Times. If she survives, the militants would try again to kill her, he vowed.

Malala has shown more courage in facing down the Taliban than Pakistan’s government and its military leaders. Her father, who once led a school for girls and has shown uncommon bravery in supporting his daughter’s aspirations, said she had long defied Taliban threats.

Pakistan’s founder, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, envisioned a democratic and moderate Muslim nation. But extremism is engulfing the country, and too many people are enabling it or acquiescing to it. This attack was so abominable, however, that Pakistanis across the ideological spectrum reacted with outrage, starting with the president and prime minister. Even Jamaat ud Dawa, the charity wing of the militant Islamist group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which waged its own violent campaigns against India, couldn’t stay silent. “Shameful, despicable, barbaric attempt,” read a message on the group’s official Twitter feed. “Curse b upon assassins and perpetrators...

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/11/op...s-courage.html

Authorities should open this up for donations.
Local authorities in Pakistan have issued a $10,000 reward for the capture of a Taliban gunman who shot a schoolgirl campaigner in the head as she left school in the turbulent Swat Valley.
Reward out for gunman who shot schoolgirl crusader - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
 
PoliticalNick
+3
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by earth_as_one View Post

I hope authorities find those responsible and bring them to justice.

Or a small group of the local men on a dark night.....
 
TenPenny
+1
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by PoliticalNick View Post

Or a small group of the local men on a dark night.....

The local men are many of the ones who don't think women should be educated.

A mid-size nuclear bomb would do wonders for the region.
 
Johnnny
+3
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by darkbeaver View Post

Yes there is, a group of so called men offing eighteen or twenty people at a funeral with drone fire triggered from thousands of miles away.

Really?????


Thats pathetic on the part of the Taliban..........
 
taxslave
+3
#10
Islam.....the religion of peace?
 
earth_as_one
#11
The people that did this are extremists and do not represent mainstream Islam. While some Muslim sects oppose female education, mainstream Islam considers "the acquisition of knowledge is obligatory for women in the same way as in the case of men".
Women and Education in Islam - Minhaj-ul-Quran International

An update:
Malala Yousafzai's condition must have stabilized as she will be moved to another hospital.. Also the reward for the capture of those responsible is now more than $100,000.

...A Pakistani child activist shot in the head by the Taliban remains in danger and will be moved to the city of Rawalpindi, officials say.

The shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai on a school bus in the Swat Valley has been denounced worldwide and by the Pakistani authorities, who have offered a reward of more than $100,000 for the capture of her attackers...

Teenage activist shot by Taliban to switch hospitals
 
karrie
+3 / -1
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

Islam.....the religion of peace?

she is equally as Muslim. Her father is Muslim. Blame the men, not the religion.

Quote: Originally Posted by TenPenny View Post

The local men are many of the ones who don't think women should be educated.

A mid-size nuclear bomb would do wonders for the region.

Yes it was horrible that these men shot this girl..... kill her with a nuke, and all her little friends too. That's better... more human.

Quote: Originally Posted by PoliticalNick View Post

Or a small group of the local men on a dark night.....

Ultimately, that is what HAS to happen. The people have to rise up. Their daughters are being slaughtered, that should be a breaking point....no more waiting for outside help, they have to help themselves and scour this plague from their communities.
 
earth_as_one
#13
This assassination attempt seems to have unified Pakistan. Every religious and political authority in Pakistan has condemned this attack. People are rising up in protests against the attack and support of women's education. I hope this incident is raised by every Imam in every Mosque during Friday's prayers.

IMO, this event would have more impact if the perpetrators are captured alive and face a very public trial.. The likely result would be a death sentence as Pakistan has capital punishment... ( I am against the death penalty)
 
DaSleeper
+1
#14
Hmmm .......Is the middle east finally coming out of the middle ages??????
 
earth_as_one
#15
Another update:

Malala Yousafzai has been airlifted to a better hospital in Rawalpindi. A bullet was removed from her skull. She is in a drug induced coma (to protect the brain) and given a 70% chance of survival. If she lives, the extent of her injuries won't be known for at least another 24 hours.
 
Walter
+2 / -1
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by earth_as_one View Post

This assassination attempt seems to have unified Pakistan. Every religious and political authority in Pakistan has condemned this attack. People are rising up in protests against the attack and support of women's education.

I have a bridge I'm trying to sell.
 
earth_as_one
#17
I think this event is a turning point for Pakistan. Attacking a 14 year old devoutly Muslim girl has crossed a line, even for those normally supportive of the Taliban. Clearly Malala Yousafzai attackers represent a extremist minority. Every Pakistani political and religious leader, including those normally supportive of Taliban actions have condemned this attack.

Malala Yousafzai is an 'icon of courage and hope', says Pakistan army chief

Yousafzai and at least two other girls were attacked as they sat on a school bus waiting to return home after a mid-term examination at her school in Mingora, the major city in Swat, a picturesque valley three hours' drive from Islamabad. Her attackers had approached the vehicle and asked for Yousafzai by name before one of them opened fire.

Her father, Ziaudduin Yousafzai, said doctors were encouraged by a CT scan taken after the operation. He said Malala, who is still unconscious, also moved her hand slightly after coming out of surgery.

In a statement published online by the military, Kayani said Yousafzai was "an icon of courage and hope" and the attack showed "how little regard they [the Taliban] have for human life and how low they can fall in their cruel ambition to impose their twisted ideology".

The statement added: "Such inhuman acts clearly expose the extremist mindset the nation is facing."



People hold a portrait of Malala Yousafzai during a protest in Peshawar condemning the attack on her by the Taliban.

...Public fury seems to have built up as the country's rolling news channels devoted considerable attention to the story and the Taliban announced they would make another attempt on her life if she survived...

...in the wake of Yousafzai's shooting, and the images of the young girl unconscious in hospital, public sympathy for the Taliban appears to have plummeted...

...Mohammad Malick, a television presenter and former newspaper editor, said the attempted killing of Yousafzai could prove to be a "turning point" that could embolden those who dare to speak out against the Taliban.

"The overwhelming majority is of the view that the Taliban have crossed the thin red line this time," he said. "There is extreme shock and damnation, but the positive thing is that we see people are coming out talking about it. It is forcing people to take public positions."...

Malala Yousafzai is an 'icon of courage and hope', says Pakistan army chief | World news | guardian.co.uk




Malala Yousafzai
ملاله یوسفزۍ
Malala Yousafzai (March, 2012) Born 1998 (age 13–14)
Mingora, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan
Nationality Pakistani
Other names Gul Makai
Ethnicity Pashtun
Known for Women's rights activism, educationism
Religion Islam
Last edited by earth_as_one; Oct 11th, 2012 at 09:49 AM..
 
#juan
+1
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by Walter View Post

I have a bridge I'm trying to sell.

Terrific!, Who did you buy it from?
 
EagleSmack
+1
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by earth_as_one View Post

I think this event is a turning point for Pakistan. Attacking a 14 year old devoutly Muslim girl has crossed a line, even for those normally supportive of the Taliban. Clearly Malala Yousafzai attackers represent a extremist minority. Every Pakistani political and religious leader, including those normally supportive of Taliban actions have condemned this attack.

They will not do a thing about it that will make any changes to the way the Taliban operates.
 
earth_as_one
#20
I wouldn't be so sure:

...The scholars issued a combined ‘fatwa’ (Islamic ruling) in Lahore which said that the Taliban’s interpretation of Islam was incorrect and was deviant from the actual interpretation of the Shariah.

The fatwa added that Taliban were misguided and their mindset was driven by ignorance.

“Islam does not stop women from acquiring education and by attacking Malala the Taliban have crossed the limits of Islam,” the fatwa added.

“Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) had regarded the sanctity of Muslim’s life and property more important than the sanctity of the ‘Kaaba’ (sacred Muslim place),” adding that the fatwa stated, “Murder of one innocent human being is equivalent to murder of entire humanity.”

The Islamic ruling added that United States was the enemy of Islam and Pakistan; any kind of cooperation with the US was not in compliance with the Shariah.

In response to Taliban’s interpretation of killing females for the greater good of the religion, the scholars said that Islam discourages killing of the females. Adding that, they said, “Even apostate women are not allowed to be killed in Islam.”...


Fifty Muslim scholars issue fatwa against Taliban | DAWN.COM
 
EagleSmack
+4
#21
All that rhetoric flies out the window with the next car bombing in Islamabad.

Discourages the killing of women....discourages... oh what strong words!
 
earth_as_one
#22
Most of the group issuing the Fatwa have been Taliban supporters in the past. This the first time they've issued a statement critical of the Taliban. That is a change.
 
EagleSmack
+2
#23
Yes... they are "discouraging" further killing of women. What a joke.
 
karrie
+1
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmack View Post

Yes... they are "discouraging" further killing of women. What a joke.

Why is it a joke? It's change. It's a step.
 
darkbeaver
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by gerryh View Post

You're kidding, right? You throw this out in this thread? You really need to put your brain in gear before you post.

No I'm not kidding, multiple murder, of women as young and younger, occurs every other day in the Islamic homelands and it is committed by hideously evil drone jockeys who draw their pay from your masters and mine. You're objecting to the truth, the facts the hand on the trigger. If you think that Islamic terror can ever eclipse the terror inflicted by gold you're simply wrong and misguided because of it. Pray she lives to fight another day, pray she isn't helped by the vaunted NATO forces for good.
 
karrie
+4
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by darkbeaver View Post

No I'm not kidding, multiple murder, of women as young and younger, occurs every other day in the Islamic homelands and it is committed by hideously evil drone jockeys who draw their pay from your masters and mine. You're objecting to the truth, the facts the hand on the trigger. If you think that Islamic terror can ever eclipse the terror inflicted by gold you're simply wrong and misguided because of it. Pray she lives to fight another day, pray she isn't helped by the vaunted NATO forces for good.

I think the line people are drawing beaver, the difference they see that you're failing to, is intent to actually kill this specific person. Yes, drone attacks need discussion. But, they don't quite compare, on a visceral level, with hunting down a specific child, and shooting her in the head.
 
darkbeaver
#27
Quote: Originally Posted by karrie View Post

I think the line people are drawing beaver, the difference they see that you're failing to, is intent to actually kill this specific person. Yes, drone attacks need discussion. But, they don't quite compare, on a visceral level, with hunting down a specific child, and shooting her in the head.

The drone targets are clearly specified as relatives of the previous days drone attacks in very many instances. They are all specific persons. Don't try to convince me that the OP wasn't just another base attack on the classic demonized other. Western media love to pick one tragic stupid murder with a face and a story to support their fiction of liberal compassionate democratization of the whole Muslim world. The tragedy of one in no way eclipses the tragedy of the many except in the machinations of the media scum. Every one of the dead wood gathering women killed in Afghanistan by drones is exactly the same tragic act, this one just convieniently has a face and a story. Who did it? How many times is it some other unseen hand? Who are the Taliban? In Afghanistan gathering wood is sometimes seen as armed aggression.
 
Corduroy
+1
#28
Pakistan is a complicated country. Devout Muslim girl is almost murdered because she wants an education and the government defends her. Assorted people allegedly insult Islam and some government members offer rewards for their murder while those who defend free speech live under the threat of assassination.

Credit where credit is due, but let's not forget how ****ed up Pakistan really is.
 
earth_as_one
#29
The two men who committed this crime have been identified.

If Malala lives, she will probably be rehabilitated in Germany, which has offered assistance.
Malala's attackers identified: Rehman Malik
Last edited by earth_as_one; Oct 11th, 2012 at 03:17 PM..
 
WLDB
+1
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by TenPenny View Post


A mid-size nuclear bomb would do wonders for the region.

And kill hundreds of children like this girl. Nuclear bombs do not discriminate on targets.
 

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