Facing New Death Threats From Taliban, Malala Still Inspires Us

Taliban leader threatens to kill Pakistani teenager who calls for peace and education.

(Christopher Furlong/ Getty)

Oct 7, 2013· 1 MIN READ
Shaya Tayefe Mohajer is TakePart's News Editor.

Would you call for dialogue with the people who shot you in the head?

What if the shooters were brazen Taliban fighters who attacked you in a schoolbus so they could scare young girls like you out of seeking an education?

Would anyone else be so forgiving and open?

Pakistani teen Malala Yousefzai is all those things and more, and told the BBC Monday "the best way to solve problems and to fight against war is through dialogue."

Such magnanimous thinking is probably why young Malala is a favorite for the Nobel Peace Prize, which is being awarded on Friday in Oslo, Norway.

(Christopher Furlong/ Getty)

If only her attackers, who have terrorized Afghanistan and Pakistan for decades, felt the same way.

Instead, the Taliban vowed Monday to attack the 16-year-old girl again, telling The Telegraph that they are against her ideology. Malala is living in England now.

"Anyone who campaigns against our religion and criticizes Islam, like she is doing with her secular ideology, is our enemy and so we will target her again, and again," Shahidulla Shahid told the newspaper.

Of course, the 16-year-old's version of Islam sounds different from the Taliban's.

"Killing people, torturing people and flogging people... it's totally against Islam. They are misusing the name of Islam," Malala said of the Taliban.

(Peter Muhly/ Getty)

Malala, who gave a stirring speech at the UN in July, wants to return to Pakistan someday to enter politics, and is already campaigning on compulsory education for all.

"I hope that a day will come (when) the people of Pakistan will be free, they will have their rights, there will be peace and every girl and every boy will be going to school," she told the BBC.