Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Brave girl Malala yousafzai

Malalal Yousafzai
Malala Yousafzai  born 1998 is a student from the town of Mingora in Swat District, Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa, Pakistan, known for her civil right’s activism, especially in the field of women’s rights in the Swat Valley, where the Taliban regime has banned girls from attending school. At 13, Yousafzai came to prominence through a blog she wrote for the BBC under the pseudonym Gul Makai, detailing her life under the Tehrik-i-Taliban regime and their attempts to regain control of the valley after a military occupation had pushed them into the countryside. The international children's advocacy group KidsRights Foundation included Yousafzai among the nominees for the International Children's Peace Prize, making her the first Pakistani girl nominated for the award.

After attack
Malala Yousafzai is an eighth-grade  student from the town of Mingora in Swat  District, Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa, Pakistan,  known for being a children's rights  activist
Malala Yousafzai came to public attention in 2009 by writing a diary for BBC Urdu about life under Taliban militants who had taken control of the valley.
The group captured the Swat Valley in late 2007 and remained in de facto control until they were driven out by Pakistani military forces during an offensive in 2009.
While in power they closed girls' schools, promulgated Islamic law and introduced measures such as banning the playing of music in cars.
Malala Yousafzai's brother, Mubashir Hussain, told the BBC that the militants were "cruel, brutal people" and urged all Pakistanis to condemn them.
Pakistani politicians led by the president and prime minister condemned the shooting, which the US state department has called barbaric and cowardly.
President Asif Ali Zardari said the attack would not shake Pakistan's resolve to fight Islamist militants or the government's determination to support women's education.
Army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani visited Malala in hospital on Wednesday and said the Taliban had "failed to grasp that she is not only an individual, but an icon of courage".
Thousands of people around the world have sent the teenage campaigner messages of support via social media.
Teachers and students condemn the attack on Malala Yousafzai
Schools in the Swat Valley closed on Wednesday in protest at the attack, and schoolchildren in other parts of the country prayed for the girl's recovery.
Protests were held in Peshawar, Multan and in Malala's hometown of Mingora, and another rally was expected in Lahore.
Late on Tuesday, she was flown from Mingora, where the attack happened, to the city of Peshawar, 150km (95 miles) away, for surgery.
Doctors in Peshawar operated on her for hours before managing to remove the bullet early on Wednesday.
"The operation went well, now she is ok and the swelling is down," her father, Ziaudin Yousafzai, told BBC Pashto.
"Please pray for her, the next 24 to 48 hours are very important. Doctors are saying we don't need to shift her. It's good for her to be here now."
A medically equipped plane had been placed on standby at Peshawar airport as medical experts tried to determine whether she would need further treatment overseas.
Police said they had arrested more than 40 people in the area, but all were later released on bail.
Correspondents say the arrests are part of a routine, and even the police do not believe they have found the attackers.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote
Malala Yousafzai earned the admiration of many across Pakistan for her courage in speaking out about life under the rule of Taliban militants, correspondents say.

She was just 11 when she started her diary, two years after the Taliban took over the Swat Valley and ordered girls' schools to close.

Writing under the pen-name Gul Makai for BBC Urdu, she exposed the suffering caused by the militants.

Her identity emerged after the Taliban were driven out of Swat. She later won a national award for bravery and was nominated for an international children's peace award.

Since the Taliban were ejected, there have been isolated militant attacks in Swat but the region has largely remained stable and many of the thousands of people who fled during the Taliban years have returned.

Pakistani doctors had successfully operated on Malala Yousafzai and removed the bullet lodged in her neck after being shot by the Taliban.

Doctors were to decide whether to fly abroad Malala abroad for further medical treatment, however, the interior minister confirmed that, according to her doctors, the girl was “out of danger” and the decision to send her abroad had been temporarily postponed.

“The girl is out of critical condition … and she will be sent abroad if the medical board thinks there is a need for further treatment there,” he said, also confirming that the central part of Malala’s brain had not been affected.

Malala Yousafzai was shot on her school bus with two friends in the former Taliban stronghold of Swat on Tuesday, then flown to the main northwestern city of Peshawar to be admitted to a military hospital.

Malala had spent Tuesday night in intensive care, where doctors at the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) described her condition as critical.

Last night, a doctor at CMH told AFP that the bullet had travelled from her head and then lodged in the back shoulder, near the neck.

“She is in the intensive care unit and semi-conscious, although not on the ventilator,” he told AFP on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak to the media.

The next three to four days would be crucial, he added.

Army chief issues statement

Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani visited the CMH on Wednesday to inquire on Malala’s condition.

The country’s top military officer also issued a strongly-worded statement condemning the attack.

“In attacking Malala, the terrorist have failed to grasp that she is not only an individual, but an icon of courage and hope, who vindicates the great sacrifices that the people of Swat and the nation gave, for wresting the valley from the scourge of terrorism,” Kayani said.

He vowed the military would not bow to terrorists like those who shot the young activist. “We will fight, regardless of the cost we will prevail,” he said.

Tuesday’s shooting in broad daylight raises serious questions about security more than three years after the army claimed to have crushed a Taliban insurgency in the valley.

The Pakistani Taliban claimed the attack in a series of telephone calls to reporters and then issued a strongly-worded statement justifying the attack on a child on the grounds that Malala had preached secularism “and so-called enlightened moderation”.

The Taliban controlled much of Swat from 2007-2009 but were supposedly driven out by an army offensive in July 2009.

“It’s a clear command of sharia that any female, that by any means plays a role in war against the mujahedeen, should be killed,” said spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan.

He accused the media of pouring out “smelly propaganda” against the Taliban, saying that women had also been killed in Pakistan military operations and were detained by the intelligence services.

Widespread condemnation

The assassination attempt on the life of National Peace Award winner Malala Yousafzai drew widespread condemnation from the government, political parties and civil society groups, terming it a bid to silent voice for peace and education.

Malala had won international recognition for highlighting Taliban atrocities in Swat with a blog for the BBC three years ago, when the Islamist militants led by radical cleric Maulana Fazlullah burned girls’ schools and terrorised the valley.

Her struggle resonated with tens of thousands of girls who were being denied an education by Islamist militants across northwest Pakistan, where the government has been fighting local Taliban since 2007.

She received the first-ever national peace award from the Pakistani government last year, and was nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize by advocacy group KidsRights Foundation in 2011.

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf telephoned Malala’s father to condemn the attack and promise that the government would pay for all medical treatment.

President Asif Ali Zardari said the shooting would not shake Pakistan’s resolve to fight Islamist militants or the government’s determination to support women’s education.

The United States denounced the “barbaric” and “cowardly” attack.

Amnesty International condemned the “shocking act of violence” against a girl bravely fighting for an education, saying that female activists in northwest Pakistan “live under constant threats from the Taliban and other militant groups”.

Malala was 11 when she wrote the blog on the BBC Urdu website, which at the time was anonymous. She also featured in two New York Times documentaries.

English-language Pakistani newspapers also reacted with horror to the shooting, which it said once again spotlighted the Islamist militancy scourge in Pakistan.

“Malala Yousafzai is in a critical condition today and so is Pakistan. We are infected with the cancer of extremism and unless it is cut out we will slide ever further into the bestiality that this latest atrocity exemplifies,”wrote The News.

Despite sporadic outbreaks of violence, the government is trying to encourage tourists to return to Swat, which had been popular with holiday makers for its stunning mountains, balmy summer weather and winter skiing.

On Wednesday, state carrier took journalists on a test flight to Saidu Sharif, Mingora’s twin town, for the first time since flights were suspended due to the insurgency.

Members of civil society have also condemned the attack and many have raised their voices against the barbaric act.

Take responsibility
3-Malala Yousafzai shot, injured in Swat
Taliban take responsibility; Nationwide condemnation, prayers

Swat—Malala Yousafzai, a child rights activist and National Peace Award winner, was critically injured, along with another girl student, after a gunman shot her on Tuesday in Mingora town of district Swat while she returning home from school on a van.

Fourteen-year-old Yousafzai hails from Mingora and is known for her outstanding services for girls’ education during the Taliban dominance in the valley of Swat.

Police said a gunman opened fire on a school vehicle when Yousafzai along with other students came out from the school and boarded the van.

Reports said Yousafzai suffered gunshot wound in her head and throat and was immediately shifted to Sadu Sharif hospital in critical condition.

She gained fame for championing the cause of the people of Swat by blogging for an international media network under a pseudonym “Gul Makai.” In her blogs‚ she highlighted the atrocities of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan.

For her courageous and outstanding services for the promotion of peace under extremely hostile conditions‚ she was conferred the first National Peace Award by the Pakistani government on 19 December 2011.

She was also nominated for International Children’s Peace Prize by Kids Rights foundation.

Malala had been receiving threats to her life, after which she was provided with a special car and a guard but the guard was unarmed.

According to KP Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain her condition was stable.

The Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) which attacked National Award Peace winner Malala Yousafzai on Tuesday have said that they would target her again if she survives because she was a “secular-minded lady”.

A TTP spokesperson told media that this was a warning for all youngsters who were involved in similar activites and added that they will be targeted if they did not stop.

Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said his group was behind the shooting.

“She was pro-West, she was speaking against Taliban and she was calling President Obama her idol,” Ehsan said by telephone from an undisclosed location.

“She was young but she was promoting Western culture in Pashtun areas,” he said, referring to the main ethnic group in northwest Pakistan and southern and eastern Afghanistan.

DPO Swat Rasool Shah said that a search operation had been initiated in the area and a number of suspects had been arrested.

Malala was shifted to Saidu Sharif Medical Complex in Mingora immediately after the incident.

Doctors at the Saidu Sharif Medical Complex said that Malala was out of danger after the bullet penetrated her skull but missed her brain.

“A bullet struck her head, but the brain is safe,” said Dr Taj Mohammed.

“She is out of danger,” he added.

Dr Laal Noor, from the same hospital, confirmed that the bullet broke her skull but missed her brain.

Later Malala was flown to CMH, Peshawar where detailed check up was carried out.

As the news made rounds, hundreds of people flocked outside the hospital, willing to donate blood to Malala.

Two bullets hit Malala — one in the head and another between the neck and chest.

Malala’s friend, Shazia, while narrating the incident said, ”When we were coming back from school, an unidentified man approached our bus and asked us to identify Malala, when we told him, he opened fire.”

Hailing from Mingora, the 14-year-old Malala struggled for restoring peace in Swat and education for girls in the region for which she was awarded the National Peace Award.

When the Taliban had banned education for females in the district, she kept a diary and wrote about the misdeeds of militants.

Yousufzai also remained a speaker for the Child Assembly in Swat, which works for child rights in the district.

President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday directed for sending Malala Yousafzai abroad for medical treatment.

Arrangements were being made to implement the President’s directive as last reports came in.

Government decided to send ambassador of peace Malala Yusufzai abroad for a critical surgery of the bullet wound suffered by her on the head.

According to reports, the bullet that pierced through Malala’s head reached very close to her spinal cord and as a result of a swollen head it was not impossible to carry out a surgery on an immediate basis.

Taking her abroad, the medical board members said, can save her life.

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf held a telephonic conversation with the father of Ms Malala Yousafzai and expressed concern over attack on her by gunmen when she was returning home from school which also injured Malala’s friends.

He strongly condemned the incident and assured him that the government will bear all the medical expenses on their treatment. He also informed him that he had directed the hospital authorities to extend best medical treatment and care to Malala as well as her friends who were injured in the attack.

The Prime Minister has also directed the Senior Minister Makhdoom Amin Faheem to rush to Peshawar to convey the feelings of the President, Prime Minister, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Aseefa Bhutto Zardari and Bakhtawar Bhutto Zardari. Mr Amin Faheem carried bouquets for Ms Malala Yousafzai and her friends on their behalf.

Praying for their speedy recovery, the Prime Minister said the whole nation joins him in prayers for their recovery.

Earlier, Ashraf condemned in strongest terms the terrorist attack on Malala Yousafzai and said if Malala was not safe, no daughter was safe and the nation would have to fight jointly against the militant mindest.

PML (N) Quaid Nawaz Sharif, ANP President, Asfandyar Wali and several political leaders have condemned attack on Malala

Malala Yousafzai: Taliban shooting victim flown to UK

                Malala Yousafzai will be treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Major Trauma Centre

The 14-year-old Pakistani girl shot in the head by Taliban gunmen is being flown to the UK for medical treatment.
Malala Yousafzai has until now been at a military hospital in Rawalpindi, with doctors saying her progress over the next few days would be "critical".
She remains in a serious condition after the attack, which the Taliban said they had carried out because she had been "promoting secularism".
Pakistan's interior minister has said the attack was planned abroad.
Those involved would soon be caught, said Rehman Malik, without giving further details.
Bone damage

Malala left Pakistan on board an air ambulance provided by the United Arab Emirates, accompanied by a full medical team.
Details of her departure were not announced until she had already left the country because of security concerns.
The plane spent several hours in Abu Dhabi before flying on to the UK. It was not immediately clear whether any of her family were travelling with her.
Pakistan's ambassador to the Emirates, Jamil Ahmed Khan, said he had seen Malala before the plane resumed its journey, and told local media that her recovery was "very steady".
She will be treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham - an NHS (National Health Service) hospital with a major trauma centre specialising in both gunshot wounds and head injuries.
The cost of her care and rehabilitation is being met by Pakistan.
The bullet which hit Malala's skull was removed last week, during surgery in Peshawar which had saved her life, the Pakistani military said.
ADoctors had advised that if she were to be moved abroad, it should be "during this time window whilst her condition was optimal and before any unforeseen complications had set in," the statement added.
"The panel of doctors recommended that Malala be shifted abroad to a UK centre which has the capability to provide integrated care to children who have sustained severe injury," it said.
Once she has recovered sufficiently, she is expected to need treatment to repair or replace damaged bones in her skull and to undergo neurological treatment.
The BBC's Aleem Maqbool, in Islamabad, says Malala has been kept sedated and on a ventilator since she was taken to hospital, with tight security around her.
The ventilator was removed briefly over the weekend to see how she coped and doctors have presumably determined she is well enough to travel, says our correspondent.
Pakistan had previously insisted Malala could be treated in her home country.
UN petition

UK Foreign Secretary William Hague: "It was a cowardly attack on her and her school friends"
Malala gained attention aged 11, when she started writing a diary for BBC Urdu about life under the Taliban.
Using the pen-name Gul Makai, she wrote about suffering caused by militants who had taken control of the Swat Valley in 2007 and ordered girls' schools to close.
The Taliban were ousted from Swat in 2009, but Malala continued to receive death threats. Then last Tuesday, she was attacked as she returned home from school in Mingora, north-western Swat.
Two armed men on foot stopped a van packed with about a dozen schoolgirls in a congested area of the town.
One of them got into the van and asked which of the girls was Malala Yousafzai before he fired three shots, hitting Malala in the head and injuring two others.
The Taliban have said they will target her again.
Protests have been held in several Pakistani cities to condemn the Taliban's actions, including in Karachi, where tens of thousands of people turned out on Sunday.
Four people have been arrested in connection with the shooting. They were among about 100 people rounded up this week, most of whom were later released on bail.
The UK's Foreign Secretary William Hague said the attack had "shocked Pakistan and the world" and that Malala's bravery was "an example to us all".
"The public revulsion and condemnation of this cowardly attack shows that the people of Pakistan will not be beaten by terrorists," he said. "The UK stands shoulder to shoulder with Pakistan in its fight against terrorism."
On Monday, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown - now the UN's Special Envoy for Global Education - said he was  "in support of what Malala fought for".
"The petition calls on Pakistan to ensure that every girl like Malala has the chance to go to school," he said, while also calling on the international community to ensure all children have access to education by the end of 2015.
Mr Brown said he would hand the petition to Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari when he visits Islamabad in November.

LONDON: Malala Yousafzai arrived on Monday for treatment at theQueen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham — an NHS (National Health Service) hospital having a specialist major trauma centre for patients of serious injuries.
Taliban gunmen shot her in the head and she received treatment for a week in Pakistan but the doctors at the Military Hospital in Rawalpindi decided that she should be treated in Birmingham for the next “critical” stage.

The hospital chosen has the capacity for Malala to be treatedwithout affecting the normal operations of the hospital. The Pakistan government will meet full costs of the medical evacuation, NHS care and any ongoing rehabilitation. The Pakistan Army said in a statement that Malala would need to have bones in her skull repaired or replaced as well as long-term rehabilitation.

Britain’s Foreign Secretary William Hague said: “Last week’s barbaric attack on Malala Yousafzai and her school friends shocked Pakistan and the world. Malala’s bravery in standing up for the right of all young girls in Pakistan to an education is an example to us all. Malala will now receive specialist medical care in an NHS hospital. Our thoughts remain with Malala and her family at this difficult time. The public revulsion and condemnation of this cowardly attack shows that the people of Pakistan will not be beaten by terrorists. The UK stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Pakistan in its fight against terrorism.”

Malala, 14, is expected to need treatment to repair or replace damaged bones in her skull and to undergo neurological treatment.Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the senior Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister of State responsible for Pakistan, told The News: “I am relieved that Malala has come to the UK for the urgent treatment she needs. I felt it was essential Britain stood ready to support this brave young campaigner. The world responded when Malala was attacked. We support her fight for the right of girls to have an education. Her values are our values.”

Also yesterday, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown — now the UN special envoy for global education — said he was launching a petition in Malala’s name “in support of what Malala fought for”.
He said: “I know that Britain will offer Malala the best treatment possible and the British people will welcome her, hoping and praying for her recovery. Today we are launching on a petition under the headline ‘I am Malala’ in support of what Malala fought for — that every girl has the chance to go to school. Today, sadly, 32 million girls are not going to school and it is time to fight harder for Malala’s dream to come true.”

“Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban simply because as a girl she wanted to go to school. The petition calls on Pakistan to ensure that every girl like Malala has the chance to go to school and calls on the international community to ensure that all out-of-school children around the world are in education by the deadline for the delivery of the Millennium Development Goals, the end of 2015,” he added.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said: “We offered last Thursday our help to the Government of Pakistan in caring for her because she does need particular specialist care. The authorities in Pakistan have taken us up on the offer. The Pakistani government is paying all transport, migration, medical, accommodation and subsistence costs for Malala and her party.”

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, where Malala has been admitted, said in a statement on Monday night that she was safely transferred to the facility following a comfortable flight from Pakistan. She is currently stable and being assessed by a team of multi-specialist doctors, including clinicians from neurosurgery, imaging, trauma and therapies, from the Queen Elizabeth and Birmingham Children’s hospitals.

A full medical team accompanied her. “Malala’s ongoing clinical care is now the hospital’s priority. We will be providing timely condition checks and where appropriate, will give more detailed information about her condition as her treatment progresses,” the statement said.

Earlier, an ISPR spokesman in Rawalpindi said in a press release that the medical team that was treating Malala had been reviewing her progress at regular intervals and consulting with international experts. He said the acute phase had been managed in accordance with international standards and the medical team was pleased with her present condition, which was described as optimal.

The ISPR spokesman said the view of the international experts was that the nureo-surgery performed in Peshawar was exactly right and indeed saved her life. The decision to transfer her from Peshawar to the specialised paediatric intensive care unit at the AFIC was correct and timely. The specialist treatment that she received at the AFIC had the beneficial effect of stabilising her condition. He said the panel of Pakistani doctors and international experts agreed that Malala would require prolonged care to fully recover from the physical and psychological effects of trauma that she received.

The spokesman said that Malala’s family was consulted and their wishes were also taken into consideration. Accordingly, the panel of doctors recommended that Malala be shifted to a UK centre having the capability to provide integrated care to children with severe injury. Pakistan arranged with the UAE for an especially-equipped air ambulance used to transfer Malala to the UK. All expenses, including transportation of Malala by air ambulance and treatment abroad, would be borne by the Pakistan government.

Our correspondent in Islamabad adds: The Women’s Parliamentary Caucus (WPC) organised a programme at the Parliament House to pay tribute to Malala. In her opening remarks, WPC Secretary Dr Nafisa Shah in very strong words condemned the heinous crime and prayed for Malala’s early recovery.

In a joint statement, the WPC members condemned the obscurantism of the militants who use religion to promote their agenda of hatred and extremism. They reiterated their support for all Pakistanis fighting against terrorism, especially the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Fata and urged the government, all elements of the society, judiciary and government functionaries to stand firm in fighting against terrorism.

APP adds from Hunza: Malala found hundreds of admirers in Gulmit village in Gojal Valley. The students and teachers of the Federal Government Boys High School, Gulmit, held a special prayer session for the female activist on Monday and prayed for her early recovery and long life.

A Yaum-e-Dua day was held for Malala across Azad Jammu & Kashmir on Monday. The PPP workers, supporters and locals, to express solidarity with Malala, held meetings and staged rallies.In Islamabad, the National Youth Assembly (NYA) appealed to the Pakistan government to nominate Malala for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Angelina Jolie for Nobel peace award for Malala


The United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Angelina Jolie has turned her attention to Malala Yousafzai, writing an opinion piece in defence of the 14-year-old Pakistani girl’s struggle for educational equality. She said that Malala should be considered for a Nobel Peace Prize.

The Hollywood heavyweight’s missive has appeared at Daily Beast, and underlines Malala’s plight, framed by her children’s reactions to the teen’s attempted murder by the Taliban.
"It was difficult for them to comprehend a world where men would try to kill a child whose only crime was the desire that she and others like her be allowed to go to school", wrote the actress, who is engaged to Brad Pitt.
Malala is undergoing treatment in the UK after insurgents shot her in the head for her advocacy of equal-opportunity education. She is said to be making a "good recovery".
She suggested that the wounded girl - now something of a poster child for human rights - should be considered for a Nobel Peace Prize.

UNESCO pays tribute to Malala Yousafzai

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today praised the bravery of Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani 14-year-old girl who was injured during an assassination attempt on 9 October.
According to a statement on UNESCO's website, the Director-General was speaking at a tribute for the schoolgirl organized by UNESCO’s Executive Board, on the final day of its 190th session.
“Malala was targeted because she stood up for every young girl’s basic human right to receive an education,” the Director-General said. “This is an attack against all young girls, against the right to learn, the right to live life to the full; and it is unacceptable.”
“Faced with such extreme cowardice and brutality, UNESCO’s Member States should draw inspiration from the courage of Malala who in recent years defended publicly the right of all girls to go to school. Seen that a 14-year old can stand up to the Taleban, what should we—we who have political power and the will to act—do? Malala’s courage impels us to join the struggle against barbarism,” added Ms Bokova, who welcomed the Pakistani Government’s mobilization to protect schools and search for those behind the attempt on Malala’s life.
“We are all Malala and her courage must inspire our struggle to ensure the fundamental right of every human being to receive an education,” she concluded.
On 9 October, Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head as she travelled home from school in a bus in Swat, in north-eastern Pakistan. According to media reports, the Taleban have claimed responsibility for the attack during which two other schoolgirls were injured. Malala Yousafzai was transferred to a British hospital on 15 October for prolonged medical treatment.
Malala Yousafzai attracted public attention in 2009 when she published a blog telling of her life in Swat, in an area under Taleban control. She then became an activist campaigning for the rights of children and girls.
The day following the attack, on 10 October, the Director-General issued a press release denouncing the attempted murder. She wished to express her support for the Pakistani schoolgirl, who became a symbol of the struggle in favour of the right to education

Not satisfied with using Madonna in efforts to discredit Malala, some TTP members are weaving bizarre conspiracy theories around the case.
Not satisfied with using Madonna in efforts to discredit Malala, some Pakistani Taliban are weaving bizarre conspiracy theories around the case. One TTP commander, currently living underground in Karachi and asking not to be named, claims that the Malala shooting was all a big hoax. “It was just play-acting,” he says. “If she was wounded in the head as it was said in the media, the doctors would have been forced to shave her head, but in photos her hair is perfect. She was never wounded.”.
Zaman Taraki, a relatively moderate TTP sympathizer living in London, concedes that the shooting was genuine, but he insists that the attack was a plot by Punjabi members of Inter-Services Intelligence, the Pakistan government’s spy directorate, to rally worldwide support for military action in the TTP’s tribal-areas strongholds. But it’s no use, he says. U.S. support for action against the TTP “would only help the religious fanatics,” he says. “The Pakistani Army would never go after the Taliban in the tribal areas.”
The backlash against Malala actually began even before Madonna’s appearance in Los Angeles. I visited a madrassa in Mardan, a 90-minute drive from Malala’s Swat Valley hometown of Mingora. “There is no doubt that Islam never allows the killing of anyone under age,” says Maulana Ali Haqqani, 45, as his class of 15 students listened intently. “The question isn’t whether what happened to Malala was right or wrong. The question is why this incident is fueling anti-Islam feelings. The attack on Malala earned deep and rapid condemnation worldwide. So why does no one speak out against the killing of innocent kids in the tribal areas, Afghanistan, and Palestine?” 
Haqqani blames practically everyone he can think of: not only the U.S. and Israeli armed forces, but Malala’s father for encouraging her to speak her mind, the late U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrooke for agreeing to meet with her and thus helping to make her a target of the TTP’s rage, the entire world for supposedly ignoring atrocities that are committed against Muslims. “Thousands of Muslim kids were burned alive in Burma,” he says, referring to violence that killed an undetermind number of men, women,and childern last June. “Where were the people who are now at the front lines of the U.S.-led media war against Pakistan’s religious elements?” He takes off his glasses and looks proudly to his students. “I agree there is more sympathy for Malala than we thought, but it is Western media using her case and keeping it alive.”
In the end, there’s always a way to deflect the burden of responsibility to the West. “The Malala incident helped the West by successfully diverting attention from anti-Islam movies,” says Kakar Khan, evidently referring to the idiotic YouTube trailer for Innocence of Muslims, which set off furious protests across the Muslim world in September. “Malala was a poor and innocent girl, unwittingly forced to play her part in this satanic drama. Now her role is at an end, and the play will go on, costing lots of Muslim blood.” The tragedy will continue. That much seems beyond dispute.


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