What scares Pakistan

Pakistan: Why Malala's Struggle Scares the Taliban

Every morning when the 9a girls enter their room on the top floor of the Khushal Public School, they put Malala's school bag in its place. The red plastic chair is in the third row, on the far right, where the blackboard with the periodic table of the chemical elements is leaning against the wall. “Malala, Cl 9th, Girls sec” is written in rounded handwriting on the desk. No, Malala would never have scribbled on school furniture, says the teacher. Your classmates wrote that. So that everyone knows: This is Malala's place, even if she cannot come to school again today.

More than two weeks have passed since the radical Islamic Taliban attackers attacked the 15-year-old on the way home and shot her in the head. As a punishment for campaigning for girls' right to education. And as a warning to everyone else.

While Malala grapples with the aftermath of the attack in a British specialist clinic, the lives of the children who grew up with her has become the stage of globalized tragedy. US President Barack Obama offers help, Madonna writes a song for Malala, and former First Lady Laura Bush compares her to Anne Frank. “I am Malala” is the slogan of a new UN program that aims to secure a place in school for all children by 2015. "We are all Malala" writes Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie about her online appeal.

Life is still wrestling with nightmares

But for the girls in Mingora in Pakistan's Swat Valley, Malala is above all their school friend, and it seems that they are fighting for this piece of reality. “This whole thing was so strange,” says Farida * with the dark eyes and the lace border on the hem of her headscarf. “In the morning she was still sitting with me in the classroom just before it happened. We played during the break. And suddenly she was on TV all the time. On every channel. Far away. And I couldn't help her anymore. ”Then, after a moment, she added,“ And of course we were afraid that we might be attacked too. ”

On this day in Swat, it seems as if normal life is still grappling with the nightmares that haunt the valley again and again. The mountain sun shines through the place almost painfully. The festival of sacrifice Eid al-Adha is imminent and the noisy bazaar is as lively as it has seldom in the last three years since Pakistan's army smashed the bizarre emirate of Mullah Fazlullah. In his “state of God” people were beheaded in public places, girls were no longer allowed to attend classes and schools were blown up.

At risk of death, Malala's father Ziauddin continued the Khushal Public School, and his daughter, then eleven years old, wrote her amazingly alert and defiant diary for the website of the British broadcaster BBC under a false name. This is how she became known and used her success to continue fighting for an education after Fazlullah fled to Afghanistan. From there he is said to have ordered Malala's murder. With such attacks he wants to spread fear. It is an attempt to exercise domination.