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- Saturday, October 13, 2012 - From Print Edition


The attack on Malala Yousafzai was a bolt from the blue for a nation already suffering from the cancer of terrorism and militancy. It shocked even the die-hard supporters of the militants who try to justify terrorism and killing of innocent people of the country on account of frequent drone attacks which, without any doubt, are totally unjustified.


Malala became famous while writing an anonymous blog on the BBC highlighting the atrocities of the Taliban who had made the people of Swat hostage. She was only 11 when she came out to defend the universal right to education for girls. She was awarded Pakistan’s first-ever National Peace Award. Also, a documentary was made on her and her family’s life by a US filmmaker ‘Class Dismissed’, which highlighted her struggle and spread her name to the four corners of the world.


Malala is a brave girl who has stood up for the rights of girls’ education. She faced threats from the militants which regularly blow up schools in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province as they oppose education for women and girls.


As it is, Malala, the brave girl she is, has faced numerous threats from the Taliban but has fought on for her dream i.e. education for girls and women, which is universally supported.


The attack on Malala has shown it is about time the country took on the scourge of terrorism and totally eliminated the elements who are neither friends of Pakistan or Islam. The attack on Malala has made it imperative that this should be done quickly and with full force. Our armed forces are highly trained, equipped and motivated and can do the required job.


Chief of the Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who visited Malala in the hospital, said that she has “become a symbol for the values that the army, with the nation behind it, is fighting to preserve for our future generations.” He said these are the intrinsic values of an Islamic society, based on the principles of liberty, justice and equality of man. To further quote General Kayani, the terrorists have underestimated the resolve and resilience of the people. “It is time we further unite and stand up to fight the propagators of such barbaric mindset and their sympathisers.”


But what is obligatory is the public’s support for such an operation. The people of the country should stand behind the armed forces of the country as they take the fight to defeat the misguided fanatics once and for all. The time to preserve our values for future generations is here. Only this way can we avenge the wounds of Malala and numerous other families who have faced the barbarity of extremists who want to impose their misguided views on the people of the country?