Taliban antics: Why cant we ever be ready, Pakistan?

Published: October 14, 2012
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One can only hope that Malala’s case will increase its momentum in gaining support and not merely fizzle out as most grave cases of injustice do. PHOTO: FAZAL KHALIQ/ EXPRESS

As the streets of Pakistan begin to fade their recollection of the wreckage and hostility that came with retaliation against the anti-Islam video “Innocence of Muslims”, another catastrophe has shaken the Pakistani populace to its core.

Malala Yousufzai’s attempted assassination has left everyone in the country, and abroad, outraged at the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) for its blatant atrocity. Both of these events have shown the power that public outrage can have in making the government take notice of an act.

While the anti-Islam video and Malala’s assassination attempt are separate occurrences, one cannot discount the idea that the Taliban’s violent resurgence and pursuit of Malala, may indirectly be to condemn the West for its role in the video debacle, as well as to highlight the consequences of holding secular ideals.

After all, Ehsanullah Ehsan claimed responsibility on behalf of the TTP and deemed the 14-year-old girl “guilty” of harbouring pro-West sentiments. Though Malala’s name has been on Taliban’s hit list since 2010, after she became prominent as a feminist blogger, their attack and the retaliatory fumes still lingering in the air are too conveniently timed.

Another pressing question is that if the government was aware of her inclusion in the hit list, why wasn’t she provided any security for such a foreseeable threat?

The government’s ‘deal with it when it occurs policy’ in the event of any disaster – natural or man-made – is doing irreparable damage to the country. However, for many, the seeds of revolution have been planted in the minds of the Pakistani collective conscience for overthrowing the Taliban; parallels are being drawn between 2009s successful campaign against the Taliban which was incited after a show of strong support for a young girl who was beaten by militants, and Malala’s assassination attempt.

Logic dictates that support and consequent action by the government in Malala’s case should be much more pronounced as she symbolises hope and resilience for Pakistan. Thus far, the entire country seems to be in the throes over the matter as unlike the anti-Islam video, the retaliation isn’t because of religious convention, but because the very sanctity of life, youth and activism have been threatened.

One can only hope that Malala’s case will increase its momentum in gaining support and not merely fizzle out as most grave cases of injustice do.

Mavra Bari

Mavra Bari

A reporter for The Express Tribune, Mavra's beats include education, literary arts and culture, and seminars.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.