M Ilyas Khan in Islamabad reports on the hatred of Malala in Pakistan.
It wasn’t even reported as breaking news on Pakistani tv, Khan says.
Many Pakistanis would not even have known she was up for the award.
Indeed, Tariq Khattack, editor of the Pakistan Observer newspaper, actually condemned it, telling the BBC: “It’s a political decision and a conspiracy.”
“She is a normal, useless type of a girl.
Nothing in her is special at all. She’s selling what the West will buy.”
Wo, that’s revealing – normal girls are useless; it’s normal for girls to be useless. Girls are useless. Wham, that’s half of humanity dismissed. That’s why Malalas are needed.
While many in Pakistan have praised her for her desire for education and her courage to make a stand for it, many others view her as a stooge of the west, as someone the Americans have set up to become a role model and misguide Pakistani Muslims.
“The Americans and Malala’s father conspired to get her shot so she can become a hero,” was the somewhat surprising conclusion of one editor of a Mingora-based newspaper some months ago.
One Islamabad housewife said: “What has she done to deserve [the Nobel prize]? She may be brave, but she’s only a child. They should have waited 10 years and let her make a mark among the deprived sections of the society.”
It is a view that has infuriated many more liberal Pakistanis who made their anger known on Twitter, excoriating those who tried to belittle this win.
It’s a longstanding divide, and one that is sadly recognizable.
This division in views on Malala is for the most part symptomatic of a division that dates from the partition of India and the creation of Pakistan.
Malala’s father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, who has been her guide and mentor, is associated with ANP, a political party that links up with the Red Shirt movement. This is a secular force of Pashtun nationalists that was allied to Mahatma Gandhi’s All India Congress and opposed the Indian partition.
After independence, the Red Shirts were dubbed as traitors and Indian agents, and often persecuted by successive military regimes that used religion and religious groups to garner support and legitimacy.
And thus created the hellhole that is Pakistan today.