Thursday, September 18, 2014


Pakistan

Girl Shot By Taliban Becomes Global Icon

Pakistani civil society activists carry candles to pay tribute to Malala Yousafzai in Lahore.
Pakistani civil society activists carry candles to pay tribute to Malala Yousafzai in Lahore.
By Ron Synovitz
In December, when the United Nations declared October 11 as the date for an annual International Day of the Girl Child, it said attention needed to be focused on promoting girls' rights.
 
On October 11, when the newly minted UN day made its debut, global attention was focused on Malala Yousafzai -- the 14-year-old schoolgirl from Pakistan's northwestern Swat Valley who was shot this week by the Pakistani Taliban for defending her right to an education.
 
The Pakistani Taliban (TTP) expected to silence her campaign, which she had carried out since the age of 11 through an online diary she wrote for the BBC. Instead, they created an international icon for girls' rights and made her known the world over simply as Malala.
 
At European Union headquarters in Brussels on October 11, young schoolgirls at a launch event for Day of the Girl Child held up photos of Malala along with signs saying "Save the Girls."
 
On social networks such as Twitter and Facebook, Malala was hailed as a brave girl whose story epitomizes the need for the UN day.

PHOTO GALLERY: Malala Yousafzai, A New Icon
  • A photo of Malala Yousafzai taken in Islamabad in March 2012
  • Army doctors treat Malala at a military hospital, where she underwent surgery to remove a bullet.
  •  A girl holds a photograph of Malala during a rally in Karachi.
  • Islamist activists in Lahore carry photographs of Malala during a protest against the assassination attempt.
  • Members of Pakistan's Aman Tehrik (Peace Movement) protest in Peshawar.
  • Peace Movement activists gather in Peshawar.
  • Civil society activists carry candles to pay tribute to Malala in Lahore.
  • A Pashtun students' group protests against the militant attack.
  • Schoolgirls pray for Malala's recovery in Multan.
  • Malala is transported from a helicopter to an army hospital by doctors.
  • Christians attend a mass praying for the early recovery of Malala at Fatima Church in Islamabad.
  • Civil society activists and journalists in Islamabad carry candles during continuing protests against the assassination attempt.

Stuart Coles, a spokesman for the international development charity Plan, an organization that has been campaigning for the education rights of children for 75 years, tells RFE/RL that social media appear to have latched onto Malala's story.
 
"The public backlash has been very strong against this terrible event. And I think, inadvertently, she has become an example of the problems and the issues that many girls are facing across the world," Coles says.
 
"It is an incredibly sad, tragic event. But it is a reminder, really, of the dangers and risks that girls face when they are campaigning for rights and the right to education in some parts of the world."
 
A statement tweeted by UNICEF on October 11 said, "Today our thoughts are with Malala Yousafzai, the inspirational 14-year-old activist for girls' rights."
 
Meanwhile, concerned activists forwarded Pakistani media reports about Malala's transfer to a hospital in Rawalpindi after surgeons removed a bullet that passed through her head and lodged in her shoulder.
 
Social Campaigns
 
Nicholas Kristof, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for "The New York Times," tweeted links to his most recent opinion piece about the shooting.
 
Kristof called the attack on Malala a reminder "that the global struggle for gender equality is the paramount moral struggle of this century, equivalent to the campaigns against slavery in the 19th century and against totalitarianism in the 20th century."

He also shared information on how readers can "honor Malala" by donating to global organizations dedicated to the promotion of education rights for girls.
 
The Global Fund for Women also called for donations to the cause of girls' rights, saying: "Ironically, the attack on Malala falls the same week as the first International Day of the Girl Child."
 
Other online activists shared links to an October 10 editorial in "The New York Times" about the attack on Malala.
 
"If Pakistan has a future, it is embodied in Malala Yousafzai," the editorial reads. "Malala has shown more courage in facing down the Taliban than Pakistan's government and its military leaders.... The murderous violence against one girl was committed against the whole Pakistani society. The Taliban cannot be allowed to win this vicious campaign against girls, learning, and tolerance. Otherwise, there is no future for that nation."
 
Hillel Neuer, executive director of the nongovernmental watchdog group UN Watch, circulated an online petition calling for Pakistan to be blocked from getting a seat on the UN Human Rights Council until the government "stops those who shoot little girls."
 
Meanwhile, in Pakistan, social networks also were being used to organize a candlelight vigil in Karachi for Malala -- a follow-up to a prayer gathering on October 11 that brought out thousands of supporters, many of them women.
 
Across the rest of the country, Pakistanis from a broad political and religious spectrum have united in outrage and revulsion at the attack.
 
As Pakistani politicians line up to condemn the shooting, commentators are pondering whether the tragedy can galvanize public opinion against the Pakistani Taliban enough to support a large military offensive against them.
 
If that becomes the case, the Taliban gun that was fired at a schoolgirl to enforce a radical interpretation of Islam will officially have backfired.

Some of the tweets on Malala Yousafzai:
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Bob Johnson from: Florida, USA
October 11, 2012 16:56
Malala is a true profound hero. The Taliban are so poisoned by religion they think carrying out a cowardly ungodly attack like they did against Malala is pleasing to God. This shows Thomas Paine was right when in his thought provoking book on God and religion, The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition, he called for a revolution in religion based on our God-given reason and Deism (Deism is belief in God/the Supreme Intelligence based on the application of our reason on the laws and designs in Nature). A Deistic revolution in religion would free us of the violence and fear producing "revealed"/hearsay religions and their man-made "holy" scriptures masquerading as the "word of God." People need to realize that God gave us reason, not religion.

Progress! Bob Johnson
www.deism.com
In Response

by: Abdulmajid
October 24, 2012 22:15
Not by religion. It's their way of being fascists. They Deny the right to life to everyone who isn't like them,even to other Muslims. They kill children. They are just thugs trying to pose as moralists. I heard that the Afghan Taliban prohibited music and even the most harmless amusememnt to the people yet in their quarters they enjoyed everything they forbade the ordinary folks and even raped little boys to the accompaniment of music. They raped Hazara women even though also in Islam rape is condidered a crime. I doubt the Pakistani Taliban are any better and I would like that their leaders be summarily shot upon being caught. They give Islam a bad name, they give islamophobes pretext to slander us all

by: Alex from: LA
October 12, 2012 00:20
RFE/RL Your Arab partly masters called Jihad on Israel, where is the report. "Egypt's Brotherhood heads urged jihad for Jerusalem"
here is the link, http://www.france24.com/en/20121011-egypts-brotherhood-heads-urged-jihad-jerusalem since you regurgitated AFP pieces. I'm waiting for you rewording. I wonder what Islamic nation will answer the call. To think that the WEST is trying to attack and disintegrated and pass the power in SYria too, but to whom, more radicals will take place.

by: B.Murphy-Bridge from: Canada
October 12, 2012 21:53
' International Day of the Girl Child ' is a Canadian campaign that took years to bear fruit -

http://becauseiamagirl.ca/Page.aspx?pid=4430

We need more leadership from the Imam's. And it is not Religion that is the problem but rather MEN's interpretation - be it the Qur'an, the Bible, or the Torah .
In Response

by: B. Murphy-Bridge from: Canada
October 13, 2012 21:15
here is corrected link on Day of the Girl Child

http://becauseiamagirl.ca/page.aspx?pid=4432

by: Jack from: US
October 12, 2012 23:01
the case only underscores how much of a hateful and retarded cult the "religion of peace" is
In Response

by: Abdulmajid
October 24, 2012 21:30
Jack, so you think you are something better than teh Taliban? Judging by your own hateful tirades you are not. Not one bit. Taliban are not Muslims. They are just criminal fascist thugs posing as Muslims. What Muslim, or what decent human being would kill a child. Yet you conflate all Muslims into the #1 evil in the world and say thatg it is legitimate to shoot them all. Look yourself in the mirror, Mr. Islamophobe and see how hate has made you ugly. And what has Christianity, the "religion of love" done to all non-Christian people in the world? What about the Crusades, the conquest of the Americas, the slave trade, colonialism, imperialism, fascism, Stalinism, are these too the Mooslims' fault, you unprintable hypocrite?
Shame on you rferrl for becomeing moer and more of a platform for islamophobic fascist racist bigot hateful xenophobic misanthropic genocidal islamnophobes like Jack the Islamophobe and declared enemy of all folks who happen to be Muslims. I am disgusted by such hate speech, if I would want to read it I's go to some loony hate site like jihadwatch, atlasshrugs, grayfalcon, or some such. It has no place here on a site that is supposed to be about defending human rights and human values. If I happened to know a person who spews such hate against me in my neighborhood...well I'd push his mendacious evil words back into his mouth, I'd give him a dose of his own medicine, let's see how he likes it. Fortunately I live among mostly decent and civilized folks.

by: Bill Webb from: Phoenix Arizona USA
October 15, 2012 02:45
This attack on Malala has really backfired for the taliban. Now they've got the whole world up in arms against their discrimination against women. They don't need any help in sullying the reputation of the taliban. They are doing a good job of it by themselves.
In Response

by: Jack from: US
October 16, 2012 13:54
Bill Webb: " they've got the whole world up in arms against their discrimination against women"
I wonder what hallucinogenic cocktail you consumed this morning.
"the whole world" "up in arms".. what a grandeur. Sounds like Hillary herself is speaking.

by: Absulmajid
October 24, 2012 21:47
Taliban are not Muslims. They are just criminal fascist thugs posing as Muslims. They are just genocidal bigot xenophobic sociopaths. What Muslim, or what decent human being would kill a child. Yet you conflate all Muslims into the #1 evil in the world and you insult and slander ME by doing this!. Look yourself in the mirror, Mr. Islamophobe and see how hate has made you ugly. Everybody who can read can see yopur moral and intellectual shortcomings very clearly. Judging from your hateful stupid writ I doubt your IQ is much higher than 35. And what has Christianity, the "religion of love" done to all non-Christian people in the world? What about the Crusades, the conquest of the Americas, the slave trade, colonialism, imperialism, fascism, Stalinism, are these too the Mooslims' fault, or what?
Shame on you rferl for becomeing more and more of a platform for islamophobic fascist racist bigot hateful xenophobic misanthropic genocidal islamophobes like Jack the Islamophobe and declared enemy of all folks who happen to be Muslims. I am disgusted by such hate speech, if I would want to read it I'd go to some loony hate site like jihadwatch, atlasshrugs, grayfalcon, antiwar.com or some such. It offends me and disturbs my harmony, it has no place here on a site that is supposed to be about defending human rights and human values. And I feel more insulted when my responses which ARE supposed to infuriate such a mentally deficient and evil person as Jack is, are banned. I can't write to him in other terms becase you can't talk reason into the likes of him. I do not mean to insult anybody but you should know how tiring typing is and it is less of an effort for me to write "moron" or "idiot" or "imbecile" or "thug" or "genocidal" than "intellectually or morally deficient person" I mean, after all they call me "terrorist" or "Sleaze" or worse, and tell me to go to Saudi Arabia or to "suck a camel" or some such, and you let it pass...

by: Abdulmajid
October 24, 2012 22:25
I'm tired of reading disgusting anti-Muslim hate speech here, it has no place on a web site supposed to defend human rights and freeedoms, if I wanted to read the poisonous trash spouted by inhuman and genocidal racist fascist bigot Islamophobes I'd not be here, but go to atlasshrugs, jihadwatch, sioa, grayfalcon, antiwar or any such hate site concocted by intellectually and morally lacking persons (and I say that just not to call them imbeciles, morons, idiots, thugs, genocidals and fascists, which would be less tiring for me, because typing is a physically exerting and time-consuming task. But then you are so sensitive to insulting words, and so tolerant of genocidal messages if only they are shrouded in “proper” terms. Why else would you tolerate the racist xenophobic hate speech and crude anti-Muslim jingoism of people like Jack or vn from Belgrade, to name a few, and sometimes suppress my postings If I overstep the line just because the offense in their messages gets on my nerves, and at the same time I try to reflect a bit of their hatred, to put a mirror before their faces so to speak, and expose them as the hateful frauds they are? Do you realize how long it takes to think up a proper response, try to make it as reasonable as my anger at the hate speech lets me, type it down and then try to get all the typos out, and finally post it? All in the middle of the night? I have already spent most of the night here just trying to object to at least part of today's load offensive fascistoid racist inhuman genocidal - and serbofascist - hate speech and crude anti-Muslim jingoism and garbage worthy of a Joseph Goebbels or Julius Streicher. If I'm fortunate I can get half an hour of sleep before I must get up and go to work again. Then come home dead tired, prepare my dinner, do the dishes and then continue this thankless job. And get only slander and derision from the islamophobes. Not a word of regret or empathy with the victims of today's fascism. Only more disdain and hate speech. Some time my organism will break down, but I just have to do my part to fight against inhumanity. Humble and ineffective as it may be.

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