Attack on Malala Yousafzai strengthens resolve of schoolgirls

Taliban are mistaken if they think they can scare girls away from school, students say.

By Ashfaq Yusafzai

2012-10-16

MINGORA – Militants who tried to kill Malala Yousafzai have strengthened the resolve of schoolgirls to attend school, her friends said.

Girls who saw a gunman shoot the 14-year-old pro-education activist and two schoolmates on their bus in Mingora October 9, contrary to the militants’ expectations, are not backing down on their hopes and dreams of getting an education.

“The clear proof of our bravery is that – when the attackers asked us 'Who among you is Malala?' – none of us replied seconds before (the shooter) began firing,” one of the other two injured girls, said 10th-grader Shazia, who is recovering from bullet wounds to her shoulder and neck.

The outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP)’s claim of responsibility bears no meaning for us, she said.

“We know the Taliban militants 'execute' their opponents,” she said. “We know that only the Taliban can do this uncivilised act of attacking girls.”

They and their families remember the atrocities the Taliban committed during the militants’ two-year reign of terror (2007-2009) in Swat. Atrocities like killing women; bombing mosques, schools and funeral ceremonies and displaying foes’ severed heads, she said.

“I was neither scared the moment when the gunmen approached us, nor am I now, because we went to school (anyway) when Swat was under the Taliban and thousands of students had opted to stay home,” she recalled.

“This (attack) cannot dent our determination, and the only weapon is to arm girls with education and defeat guns with pens,” said Kanat, the third girl injured in the shooting. “We will continue education to accomplish Malala’s mission.”

There’s no looking back for her, she told Central Asia Online from her bed, adding she plans to become a doctor.

TTP tactics won’t deter girls

The TTP want to frighten students into abandoning school, but won’t succeed, said Asma Ali, a physics teacher at Malala’s school. Students showed their defiance when they turned up in droves for the October 12 morning assembly to pray for Malala.

The credit for that attitude belongs to Malala, she said, adding, “Our students aren’t afraid.” The attempted murder of Malala, a 14-year-old Mingora resident who blogged in 2009 under a pen name for the BBC Urdu service about the Taliban’s abuses, has aroused widespread debate in Pakistan but has not shaken the resolve of girls in Mingora.

“If we feared the Taliban, we couldn’t get education; therefore, we are totally oblivious to the Taliban’s attacks,” said Spogmay, a 7th-grade girl who was on Malala’s bus.

"It was like hell. For a moment, I thought we would not survive, the way (the gunman) fired at us indiscriminately,” Spogmay said. Shazia expressed hope for Malala’s recovery.

“I am sure that the scales of justice would tip in our favour and ever-smiling, brave and intelligent Malala will regain health very soon,” Shazia, Malala’s best friend, said, adding the students would rally around Malala to ensure women’s education in the future. “I will give my life in exchange for Malala’s. Losing a friend like her is unbearable.” Shazia recalled how Malala persuaded the girls to attend schools in the Taliban era.

“Malala used to tell us they should wear veils in compliance with the Taliban’s directives ... but shouldn’t remain absent,” she said. “We have promised Malala that we should fight the Taliban with pen and books and I will keep that promise even at the cost of my life,” Saeeda, an 8th-grade student at the same school, said.

Malala told the girls on a daily basis that “The Taliban are the enemy of humanity and Islam. We should stand up against them to thwart their efforts aiming to bar women from schools,” Saeeda said. Malala’s approach kept up the courage of all 500 girls at the school, Saeeda said.

“My parents advised me to stay home during the Taliban’s rule, but I had promised Malala that I will never miss school,” she said. “All the people must pray for Malala. She is the beacon of hope for millions of girls.”

Parents equally determined

Fathers of Malala’s schoolmates were determined not to let the Taliban chase their daughters from the schools.

“She is extremely concerned about education and has been asking different questions,” Shazia’s father, Muhammad Ramzan, said. “But I prevailed upon her that everything will be right, and they would be in school again.” Ramzan said he worried over Malala’s condition as if she were his own daughter. “I am a proud father because my daughter has proved that she is not afraid of anyone,” he said.

Jamil Shah, Saeeda’s father, said he would stand by his daughter through thick and thin and would spare no effort to ensure that she gets an education.

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Reader Comments

  • malala is the honest girl and i like her very much and please dont call her pakistani she is proud of afghaistan

    July 27, 2013 @ 06:07:48AM ziaullah khan
  • U.r.so nice girl and your hope for Pakistan r nearly to be upgrade with prime minister myan nawaz Sharif..........think

    May 12, 2013 @ 07:05:04AM Dr.RonaQ khan
  • Sadia told the truth. Malala, her US paid father, and all NGOs supporting Malala are anti-Islam. As seen from picture, they are trying to show that muslim girls (shown by scarf in shape of Crescent/hilal) are beaten by hammer of Islam. They always try to show things by which they try to give backward picture of Pakistan & Islam. Surey they will not succeed in our country of Muslims & Mullas. We support every thing of Taliban.

    May 6, 2013 @ 04:05:16AM Mahmood Khalid
  • I AM DEEPLY IMPRESSED BY THE COURAGEOUS AND BRAVE ATTITUDE OF MALLALA. MAY.GOD BLESS HER AND BESTOW HER LONG PROSPEROUS LIFE.

    May 5, 2013 @ 12:05:48PM FAZAL KARIM ARIF
  • May Allah safeguard these girls. I do not care who pays, who comes from which unit. Leave girls, women and children alone. Every time a war goes on, they rape women and kill their children. Islam does not call for it. Muhammad did not preach any of it.

    May 4, 2013 @ 08:05:10PM Irada
  • very nice

    April 29, 2013 @ 02:04:31PM babar ali
  • They are very brave girls! It is hard to imagine that things like these can happen far away, but if one gives a thought to it, any country has similar problems, even the most advanced one. Clever people pose a threat to religious fanatics of any faith, as they find it easier to control a herd of sheep!

    April 27, 2013 @ 10:04:23AM natalia
  • The Taliban are the US elite units in the Middle East!

    April 25, 2013 @ 12:04:45AM Хусейн
  • All about the Attack on Malala is nothing but a topi drama and it is the fact that Malala got neither attacked nor any kind of wound on her face or head. His father is a Mean and Traitor and USA paid person. All this incident was planned by US Government with the fully coordination of Mohd. Ramzan F/O Malala just to divert the attention of Pakistani Muslims from protest against the Anti Islam Movie on YouTube. In those days every Muslim was engaged in such activities of protest. So, Muslim opponents planted the article of Attack on Malala through their fellows in Electronic Media who contacted with M. Ramzan (who already is running a NGO fully funded by US Government) and offered him lot of things. So, if anybody yet not understand the fact then go to hell. I told the truth. So I strongly condemned of all this article and Malala the main character of this drama who has done not any prominent job for Pakistan. There are also some personalities we must think about them and they are the Actual Heroes but facing US brutality. Some examples are Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, Dr Aafia Siddiqi etc.

    April 12, 2013 @ 12:04:39AM Sadia
  • i like it

    April 4, 2013 @ 07:04:47AM abdul qadeer kaber
  • Education will help Pakistan. Malala is the pride of all people! Death to the Taliban!

    March 30, 2013 @ 01:03:46AM Ереке
  • Malala is a brave Pathan daughter of Pakistan, she cannot be deterred by cowardly acts of Non- Muslims so- called Taliban. These Taliban are Indian agents and have nothing to do with Islam.In shaa Allah she will further glorify her cause and name of Pakistan.

    March 27, 2013 @ 11:03:28AM Raja Moeen Khan
  • malala is very st0rng girl & has frnd shazia & i like him.we r Proud of u.

    March 24, 2013 @ 12:03:30AM Hanif Khan 4r0m pesh.
  • Malala which work you have done for promote to education, if it happened to at 1900 century at any other girl. I wish today anyone girls are not uneducated in Whole World.

    March 23, 2013 @ 11:03:51AM Abdul Nabi
  • Malala Your bravery is exemplary for the whole nation of the world. You change the history

    March 22, 2013 @ 02:03:51AM Sher Ghazi
  • It is good that we can understand between islamists and talibans of these days, Islam never opposed education of girls, but users misusers I must say using the name of Islam for a wrong purpose. The issue of mala was raised for some favors but it is straight forward that people who attacked Malala do not preach Islam.

    March 15, 2013 @ 11:03:38PM ssdpa
  • i would love to help malala on her will but their is lot of terrorism

    March 10, 2013 @ 12:03:43AM ashley
  • my name is bilal

    March 3, 2013 @ 09:03:05AM bilal hussain
  • malala is a good girl.

    March 3, 2013 @ 08:03:12AM nimra
  • Great Girl

    February 27, 2013 @ 07:02:36AM Jalil
  • What happened with Malala is not a praiseworthy deed.But at the same time one should be careful while making joke of relgion.USA and western countries are backing her because she condemns Beard /Islam and Pakistan army.

    February 27, 2013 @ 05:02:21AM Iqbal Ahmed
  • Malala my cute sister,we all pakistani proud on your bravery,we promise you that we are the part of your mission and 100% fevering the female education in pakistan and strongly reject the shaming activities of TTP in pakistan and all over the word.love you my cute Malala,Allah almighty give you good health and quick recovery.God bless you.

    February 25, 2013 @ 10:02:39AM Syed Tajamul Hussain Jan
  • What has Malala done that you are eulogizing her. You should have written blog on Arfa Karim as well. If she had such love for the country, why would she have fled abroad; aren’t there doctors here? Malala my foot

    February 24, 2013 @ 08:02:01AM fawad ch
  • it is the fake story plz dnt create a big story malala is a advance girl taliban was wrong but she was also wrong

    February 23, 2013 @ 06:02:18AM anushe meher
  • malala is a part of drama.she is not doter of pakistan.his histry afaktive muslim kalchour .they are bad pepal with his teem

    February 21, 2013 @ 04:02:04PM zeeshan but
  • It is great to see the courage of PAKISTANI daughters. HATS OFF FOR THEM.MAY ALLAH BLESS PAKISTAN.

    February 15, 2013 @ 09:02:37AM MALIK FAISAL
  • Malala sister, I am Abdul Kabir Khan, your brother I m you sisssssssssssssssssssssssssss

    February 10, 2013 @ 03:02:11PM kashan khan
  • malala is symbol of peace and knowldge

    February 9, 2013 @ 10:02:22PM yasir
  • I like mala allah bless her.

    February 9, 2013 @ 05:02:20AM myaqoob
  • I just know that women should also have a status they are mothers as well

    February 7, 2013 @ 02:02:42PM MUHAMMAD TARIQ
  • i know malala is a good girl

    February 7, 2013 @ 09:02:33AM zahid
  • Mala you carry on ur mission we are all with you.

    February 5, 2013 @ 08:02:36AM aresha riaz pakistan rwp
  • God bless you .

    February 4, 2013 @ 11:02:19PM sadiqhussain
  • My sympathies with Malala were gone when her first pic from UK hospital appeared, where no wound was visible on her forehead. Nor the head was shaved if bullet was operated any where else on head. Then the NEWS greedy father an NGO operator grabbing positions, money. All drama of high level and international. to corner Pakistan in future. May God help all Pakistanies from this curse.

    January 24, 2013 @ 10:01:43AM siddiqui
  • May Allah live you long life.

    January 24, 2013 @ 08:01:08AM shaukat
  • Malala, our prayers are with you. may you recover soon, you are pride of our country and your father also. Long live Malala

    January 23, 2013 @ 04:01:12PM M.G.A..balti
  • I proud of you,i love u and be happy.

    January 22, 2013 @ 03:01:58AM Rana Naeem
  • Who Kill Muslims they are not muslims He Darakat Going to Jahannam. If U Want Support Ur Muslims Brother then Search that kind of Person which reduce muslims.

    January 20, 2013 @ 08:01:45AM Faheem Momand
  • GOOD ARTICLE

    January 16, 2013 @ 10:01:27AM SAHIR
  • ALLAH MADE MALALA VERY SPECIAL GIRL .

    January 16, 2013 @ 09:01:35AM HUSSAN
  • MALALA MADE NEW HISTORY OF THE WORLD . It is the part of history ,there is always two powers . ONE is for NOBLE CAUSE AND THE OTHER IS SATAN OR FARHOON . DIRTY POWER OF BUTCHERS WILL ALWAYS DEFEATED . ALLAH SUBHANN TAHALLA GIVES US A CHANCE .It is our JUGGMENT whether we do justice or because of FARHOONI POWER we favour farhoon .

    January 16, 2013 @ 09:01:56AM sahir
  • Mala is a legend for the Pakistan .she use as carrier by Pakistani Gove to remove the inpact of insulting of Muhammad Piece be upon him

    January 15, 2013 @ 07:01:15AM nadeem
  • MALALA IS DUGHTER OF THE PAKSITAN AND I PRAY FOR HER GOOD HEALTH.WE ARE PROUD OF MALALA FROM: MALIK WAQAR PESHAWAR

    January 10, 2013 @ 01:01:07AM malik Waqar
  • MAY LLAH GIVE U HEALTH AMEEN................BE HAPPY

    January 8, 2013 @ 03:01:08AM ayesha naeem
  • Malala u r sO cute Girl I Em With you

    January 4, 2013 @ 09:01:02AM aresha
  • taliban are no muslim, but malala is a muslim girl, taliban, you are fule of fire the day of life you are non muslims

    January 4, 2013 @ 12:01:15AM mohiuddin butt
  • Tell me that many shools are being damaged and girls students are killed.but why? By attacking at MALALA and her felows,who got benifits ? one group is in favour of taliban and other is opposit.How much stupid we are!As a nation,we are also devided? ISLAM stresses on unity,and what are we doing? what did our Holy Prophet (saw)do with the daughter of Hatim Tai?in any religion, there is nothing so shining example.Islam is loving people religion,Pakistan is a great counry.But some people are trying to divide us and to blame islam. We strictly condemn MALALA,S attacker.We curse all those,who are terrorists all over the world.We wana have education to find out hidden enemies,to defeat them,and to prove that islam is anti-terrorism religion.Malala never lose heart,my prayers are always with you. Best of luck and keep smiling,,,,,,,,,

    December 31, 2012 @ 03:12:30AM kashif shad
  • u ar very very nice girl

    December 29, 2012 @ 03:12:30PM ch jabar
  • There is no conception of any taliban group prior to the battlew fought beweeen Afghanistan and USSR in 1979. If a powerful country jumped with force over a weak nation and country, then resistance will automatically occured. This situaiton is badly created in Pakistan. The stability will not established as and when 2nd party will not include in the progress and prosperity of pakistan.

    December 28, 2012 @ 01:12:17AM Mukhtiar Hussain Shah
  • malala is bad girl and she did not daughter of pakistan

    December 27, 2012 @ 09:12:53AM zahidkhalil
  • YOU ARE THE BRAVEST GIRL OF PAKISTAN.I PROUD ALIKE YOU.MAY YOU LIVE LONG.AMINE

    December 26, 2012 @ 11:12:47AM FARAH GUL
  • THERE IS NO SUCH ATTACK ON ANY ONE. IT IS LIKE THE SAME ATTACK WHICH DR AFRIDI HAS INITIATED A SO CALLED FAKE POLIO COMPAIGN ONLY TO WITCH HUNT OSAMA. SIMILARLY JUST FOR THE PATRONISATION OF WAZIRISTAN OPERATION ALL THIS EPISODE IZ ONAIRED.NOTHING ELSE. IF SHE IS DAUGHTER OF PAKISTAN WHY SHE IS BECOMING PART AND PARCEL TO PLAY IN THE HANDS OF THOS FORCES WHO ARE ALWAYZ READY TO MALIGN PAKISTAN. TALIBAN ARE ALSO NOT ADMIRABLE..THEIR WAY OF TABLEEG IS NOT OF ISLAMIC TEACHINGS VIS-A-VIS THIS MALALA IS ALSO EARNING BAD NAME FOR HOMELAND. WHATEVER IS HAPPENING IN PAKISTAN IT IS NONE OF THE BUISNESS OF THE REST OF THE WORLD...BUT WHAT CAN V DO GHAAR KA BHEEDI LAANKA DHAAEY......SHAME ON HER????????

    December 19, 2012 @ 05:12:56AM SADR NAMIQUE
  • Brave girl every Pakistani salutes you; may Allah bestow you with complete health, Amen

    December 18, 2012 @ 09:12:15AM Abdul Sattar Memon
  • I APPRECIATE MALALAS BRAVERY THESE TYPES OF GIRLS MAKE THE FUTURE OF PAKISTAN

    December 18, 2012 @ 08:12:35AM huda
  • the daughter of pakistan,,,, salute.

    December 13, 2012 @ 03:12:25AM muneer TFT12087
  • daughter of pakista, salute to you.

    December 13, 2012 @ 03:12:41AM muneer TFT12087
  • malala yousafzai sister and daughter of all pakistan

    December 12, 2012 @ 04:12:32AM ahmed raza
  • u ar veary nise girl

    December 11, 2012 @ 05:12:39AM rubab
  • Two days back, 13 year girl Syed Mehzar Zuhra of 7th grade was killed one year after her father was murdered. Media did not cover the incident, why? It is because she is from Shiite community otherwise she deserve more attention than Malala

    December 2, 2012 @ 09:12:19AM لالہ جان
  • Malala is a brave Pathan daughter of Pakistan, she cannot be deterred by cowardly acts of Non- Muslims so- called Taliban. These Taliban are Indian agents and have nothing to do with Islam.In shaa Allah she will further glorify her cause and name of Pakistan.

    November 29, 2012 @ 10:11:58AM sultan Durrani
  • I LIKE IT SO MUCH

    November 27, 2012 @ 02:11:54AM TARIQ MEHMOOD
  • No one can prove that they were the Talibans. May be they were someone elses agents and of course if they were taliban why did not the bullets hit her one on the heart two on the head men is dead no one can dodge bullets at point blank range. Is it some Jackie Chans movie or the MATRIX. They could have even thrown a hand grenade. What Pakistan actually neeed is that there should be complete ban on pistols only shotguns allowed(for civilians), speedy JUSTICE , good law structure, free of cost law knowing sources and procedure ,end of prostitution , nic be given to the orphans who have grown up, nic and driving licencse should be given at earlier ages like 16 or their will be(100 rupees to traffic policemen), earlier marriage dates like 15,no sindhi subject necessary for urdu speaking U know people want to learn arabic and english and not some old and absolute sindhi or pashto well the sindhis can speak sindhi of course,basic education both religous(quran and the saha sitta) and worldly for all and good politicians or else this country will be runing like this mass murdering and crimes..

    November 21, 2012 @ 02:11:15PM Muhammad Ali
  • Malala Yousafzai being a Pakistani we proud to u. God bless you.

    November 20, 2012 @ 10:11:23AM AHSAN TANVEER
  • Malala, our prayers are with you. may you recover soon, you are pride of our country and your father also. Long live Malala

    November 19, 2012 @ 01:11:15PM AJMAL
  • “The Taliban is the enemy of humanity and Islam..." They finally understood it! The Taliban (students) against the education of girls - it sounds absurd, to say the least! The Movement of Taliban was created by the Americans. Osama bin Laden was generated, exalted and funded by the Americans for a long time. Saddam Hussein, Gorbachev and Yeltsin were brought to power by the Americans. How many more of these "democrats" will be brought to power by the USA and NATO in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Syria and other countries for their own economic and strategic interests? How many lives they will ruin and how much human blood they will shed?

    November 19, 2012 @ 12:11:12AM Александр
  • I do no believe in the existence of Taliban. Some other forces are doing this in the name of Taliban.

    November 13, 2012 @ 02:11:42PM AA
  • what is this malala? mala la and whas from pesawr ?

    November 12, 2012 @ 10:11:54PM salma shah
  • to be dead it should be good how many student are killing in afghanistan. that responsibilty of pkistan. Why they killing afghan Students

    November 10, 2012 @ 01:11:37AM Javid afghan
  • malala is the qween of this world

    November 8, 2012 @ 08:11:38AM habib
  • malala you r the veryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy bessstttttttttttttttttttttttttttt

    November 7, 2012 @ 11:11:46PM azeem shinwari
  • The TTP want to frighten students into abandoning school, but won’t succeed, said Asma Ali, a physics teacher at Malala’s school. Students showed their defiance when they turned up in droves for the October 12 morning assembly to pray for Malala. The credit for that attitude belongs to Malala, she said, adding, “Our students aren’t afraid.” The attempted murder of Malala, a 14-year-old Mingora resident who blogged in 2009 under a pen name for the BBC Urdu service about the Taliban’s abuses, has aroused widespread debate in Pakistan but has not shaken the resolve of girls in Mingora. “If we feared the Taliban, we couldn’t get education; therefore, we are totally oblivious to the Taliban’s attacks,” said Spogmay, a 7th-grade girl who was on Malala’s bus. "It was like hell. For a moment, I thought we would not survive, the way (the gunman) fired at us indiscriminately,” Spogmay said. Shazia expressed hope for Malala’s recovery. “I am sure that the scales of justice would tip in our favour and ever-smiling, brave and intelligent Malala will regain health very soon,” Shazia, Malala’s best friend, said, adding the students would rally around Malala to ensure women’s education in the future. “I will give my life in exchange for Malala’s. Losing a friend like her is unbearable.” Shazia recalled how Malala persuaded the girls to attend schools in the Taliban era. “Malala used to tell us they should wear veils in compliance with the Taliban’s directives ... but shouldn’t remain absent,” she said. “We have promised Malala that we should fight the Taliban with pen and books and I will keep that promise even at the cost of my life,” Saeeda, an 8th-grade student at the same school, said. Malala told the girls on a daily basis that “The Taliban are the enemy of humanity and Isla

    November 7, 2012 @ 01:11:20AM Shahbz ali khan
  • malala is inocent student and she is very brave girl

    November 6, 2012 @ 12:11:59PM shakeel
  • Mala yousuf Zai is the wlelth of nation so for the enemy of nation are so for they could not tolerate these people . but we r proud on u malala that u r a brave girl .

    November 5, 2012 @ 11:11:56PM ahmad nawaz lal chitrali
  • good pakistani duty

    November 5, 2012 @ 03:11:58AM Qaiser
  • malala the great

    November 2, 2012 @ 05:11:00AM nafees
  • Because our Prophet taught us, get education

    November 2, 2012 @ 03:11:47AM shahbaz
  • Alas, someone should read Hamid Mir’s article

    November 1, 2012 @ 03:11:06PM ajmal
  • MILLALA ZINDABAD

    October 30, 2012 @ 06:10:31AM SIKANDAR
  • Malala is the simbol of bravery of pakhtoon nations. Proud of you Malala

    October 29, 2012 @ 10:10:05AM O
  • malala god duther god sister god pakstani

    October 29, 2012 @ 06:10:40AM munir ahnad janjua
  • I told her that everyone should be all right and she would go to school again. Ramzan said that he is concerned about Malala's health as much as his own daughter. He said that he feels proud that his daughter has proved that she is not scared of anyone.

    October 29, 2012 @ 03:10:02AM nadeem shahzad
  • she is febulous and more stringly and intellegent girl ..................? i pr f4 u h3lt nd u g3t mor3 aduction........................................................? <3 <3 <3

    October 27, 2012 @ 09:10:26AM najeeb ali
  • TTP is nothing nd has no reality Our sisters nd daughters must go to schools It is their right in ISLAM too

    October 26, 2012 @ 12:10:22PM zubair
  • I LIKE THIS

    October 26, 2012 @ 08:10:52AM MOHAMMADASGHAR RIZWAN
  • Why has Malala Yousufzai issue been so much hyped up. Fire in Baldia killed at least 500 people, but they did not get this much media coverageand their family members were not sent to London

    October 26, 2012 @ 04:10:32AM siddiq
  • malala yousafzai is a very honest and pious girl .

    October 26, 2012 @ 03:10:07AM nadeem
  • A very good comment has been made

    October 26, 2012 @ 01:10:30AM shamsh
  • Recent attack on Malali has united all students of our country to get education on any cost and spread this message to all over to each and every student in the world that they don,t accept any threat from enemies of education.Our religion is totally based on knowledge and knowledge can get only through education and research. In the world each and every body have condemed attack on Malalai except our extrimist who don,t want to educate their society and want live in jungles and darkness.

    October 24, 2012 @ 05:10:34AM KKB
  • I am with Malala and I request the government to nab attackers of Malala as soon as possible, otherwise many more intelligent students of the country would become prey of this terrorism

    October 23, 2012 @ 02:10:43PM rozina saeed(from karachi)
  • malala is the hero of origenal pashtoons of pakistan and afghanistan.

    October 17, 2012 @ 03:10:27AM abdullah salarzai of bajaur agency fafa