Tuesday, August 30, 2016


The Pakistani Taliban's Rationale For Shooting A Schoolgirl

Malala Yousafzai, the 14-year-old schoolgirl targeted in the October 9 gun attack, is seen in Swat Valley in an undated photo.
Malala Yousafzai, the 14-year-old schoolgirl targeted in the October 9 gun attack, is seen in Swat Valley in an undated photo.

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Profile: Shot Pakistani Teen Stood Up To The Taliban

Malala Yousafzai is a teenage girl from Pakistan's Swat district who stood up to the Taliban by writing an online diary about their ban on girls' schools there. On October 9, she was shot in the head and neck by a Pakistani Taliban gunman while traveling home from her school. RFE/RL takes a closer look at how the words of a brave young girl became a threat to Pakistan's Taliban.
By Ron Synovitz
The Pakistani Taliban has provided its justification for the shooting of a 14-year-old schoolgirl who made a name for herself by challenging the Islamist group's crackdown on girls' education.

In a letter issued following international condemnation of the shooting of Malala Yousafzai in Pakistan's northwestern Swat Valley, the Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) states its case for the attack and threatens anyone who challenges its strict interpretation of Shari'a law.

Signed by TTP spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan, the letter was sent to RFE/RL's Radio Mashaal as well as other Pakistani and international media organizations early on October 10.

The letter, written in English, says a Taliban gunman "successfully targeted" Yousafzai "although she was young and a girl and the TTP does not believe in attacking women."

It says Yousafzai, who gained global recognition at the age of 11 through an online diary she wrote for the BBC about TTP influence in her hometown of Mingora, was shot because "whom so ever leads a campaign against Islam and Shariah is ordered to be killed by Shariah."
A girl holds a photograph of Malala Yousafzai aloft during a rally in Karachi on October 10.
A girl holds a photograph of Malala Yousafzai aloft during a rally in Karachi on October 10.
The letter accuses Yousafzai of being "pro-West," promoting Western culture, and speaking out against Taliban militants -- charging that Yousafzai's "personality became a symbol of an anti-Shariah campaign."

Using the term for Islamic holy warriors to refer to Taliban militants, the letter says that "Yousafzai was playing a vital role in bucking up the emotions" of Pakistan's military and government "and was inviting Muslims to hate mujahideen."

The letter goes on to argue that "[i]t is a clear command of Shariah that any female who, by any means, plays a role in the war against mujahideen should be killed."

It then seeks to justify the shooting of the schoolgirl by citing passages from the Koran in which a child or woman was killed.

"If anyone argues about [Yousafzai's] young age, then [consult] the story of Hazrat Khizar in the Koran relating that Hazrat Khizar -- while traveling with the Prophet Musa -- killed a child," the letter reads. "Arguing about the reason for his killing, he said that the parents of this child are pious and in future [the child] will cause a bad name for them."
Schoolgirls pray for the recovery of gunshot victim Malala Yousafzai in Multan, in central Pakistan.
Schoolgirls pray for the recovery of gunshot victim Malala Yousafzai in Multan, in central Pakistan.

For those who argue that Yousafzai's shooting was not justifiable because she was female, the letter says, "then we can see the incident [in the Koran] of the killing of a wife by a blind companion of the Prophet Muhammad because she spoke insulting words about the Prophet. And the Prophet praised this act."

The letter also addresses criticisms of the TTP's stance against girls' education.

"The Tehrik Taliban's crime wasn't that they banned education for girls. Instead our crime is that we tried to bring the education system for both boys and girls under Shariah," the letter reads. "We are deadly against coeducation and a secular education system, and Shariah orders us to be against it."

The Taliban's justification concludes with a threat, saying: "If anyone thinks that Malala is targeted because of education, that's absolutely wrong and is propaganda by media. Malala is targeted because of her pioneer role in preaching secularism and so-called enlightened moderation. And whom so ever will commit so in the future too will be targeted again by the TTP."
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: syed from: Islamabad
October 10, 2012 12:56
TTP are not mujahideen. If they call themselves mujahideen they are lying. They are bunch of criminals like Hitler who are killing innocent women and children in the name of their homemade Sharia.

by: Jack from: US
October 10, 2012 16:09
the blood of the brave Pakistan girl is on the hands of US government who supports and fosters Pakistani Muslim Sunni regime along with Taliban and Al Qaeda

by: Manisha from: India
October 10, 2012 18:49
Truth is they were scared that people are actually listening to her...and she was right. Talibans are liars and were afraid to get exposed by a child and a girl at that. Cowards!

by: Rob from: USA
October 10, 2012 23:23
The taliban didnt attack her for being pro-western. They attacked her for being pro-civilized. The taliban are a bunch of thugs who like to keep their women stupid so they look smarter. Pretty pathetic bunch if you ask me.

by: Ahmed from: Pakistan, Dubai
October 11, 2012 14:32
these monkey taliban are just scum of earth, they dnt deserve a place in society cuz they are totlaly uncivilise,d wrongly interprate islam, adn try to impose their own point of view on evrybody, they are totally agaisnt islam, they are herectic. and i wish they doomed forever.

by: Abdulmajid
October 11, 2012 16:00
Syed, Manisha, Rob, Ahmed,
Couldn't agree more with you. What true Muslim, indeed whoever thinks of himself of being a decent human being or believes in God, would have a child, or a young woman murdered! These Taliban are criminal, murderous thugs, they are the devil. And I don't think much of Wahhabi either. OK, in Qatar they seem to be a bit more reasonable, but the culturicide they want to impose not so much on the West biut on their own... it makes me think of what the Khmer Rouge did to Cambodia. Fortunately Malala seems to be out of immediate danger now, I hope she will not give up. And others must follow her example. Only when the Muslim women make themselves heard can there be a chance that they're no longer oppressed (even though, in my Moroccan wife's family and among their friends the women are not second-class human beings, surely not. And not in Bosnia either, at least those I know.) And as events in Libya show, people are not that stupid; the fundamentalistst sure have a hard time there and I hope it gets harder. At least those people who returned their weapons do not want an Islamist regime and I'm sure a majority of the people doesn't want it either. As for Afghanistan, if women were no longer relegated just to "Children, kitchen and prayer" things surely would get better.
But this can't be imposed from the outside, they must do it by and for themselves. Yet they will need encouragement and support.

by: chris from: new york
October 11, 2012 19:50
These extremists are all cowards they are threated by a 14 year old girl because she wants her civil rights and a education. Their backwards believes and ignorance to reality and the rest of the world is the reason they will never prosper or live in peace. They cannot ignore the rest of the world and deny the facts of science it will only lead to their demise.

by: Qayum from: Pakistan
October 12, 2012 01:51
The first quote from the Qurran is out of context while the second d quote does not exist in the Qurran. They are misquoting the Qurran to justify their cawardly act of shooting a girl.

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