Archive for Pakistan

Shut Up, They Explained

You were saying?

A Jewish activist in Pakistan was savagely beaten by a Muslim mob Wednesday – and then arrested and roughed up again by police.

Fishel Benkhald – who is leading a one-man campaign to preserve the old Jewish cemetery in Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi – has been a vocal activist for minority rights in the country, which is overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim and where minorities such as Christians, Hindus and non-Sunni Muslims are routinely persecuted.

Speaking to Arutz Sheva Thursday, Benkhald – the son of a Muslim father and a Jewish mother, but who identifies as Jewish – told how he had agreed to a face-to-face debate with a Muslim Pakistani man after a discussion on the topic of minority rights on Twitter.

The two agreed to continue a friendly discussion at a restaurant in Karachi. But when he got there, Benkhald soon found himself ambushed.

“I went there alone but he was with his friends, we started the debate in a normal discussion manner but soon it got heated up and cursing started.”

At that point, a “mob” began to gather around him “and two of the guys who were with him started manhandling me – I should have left at that time.

“They started punching me and when I fell they started kicking my head. Someone also tried to snatch away my mobile.”

At that point police arrived, but instead of arresting his attackers, they detained Benkhald.

“The police came and took me away, they didn’t take the other guys. The police asked me if I am from Israel or from any other country. I told them that I am a Pakistan and am Jewish from (my) mother’s side but registered as a Muslim in Pakistan.”

Blindfolded and cuffed, he was then handed over to Pakistan’s Rangers paramilitary force, who continued questioning him about his ethnic origins, and going through his social media pages after demanding his passwords.

“They beat me, but not much,” claims Benkhald, and accused him of being a spy for either Israel, the US or India.

The number of non-Muslims in the entire nation of Pakistan could fit inside a local diner and still leave room at the counter for any Muslims hankering for eggs and bacon. But that’s still too many for the (officially named) Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Too many for any Islamic Republic, if you get my drift.

PS: You can hear Benkhald’s recording of the encounter here.


Torturing Detainees Americans Can No Longer Be Bothered To Torture

One of the telling details in the so-called torture report that betrayed that the so-called torture was so-called was: the pulse ox sensor on the fingertip during waterboarding to make sure the oxygen saturation in the bloodstream never got too low. Hard to picture something as torture when I see it every week on Grey’s Anatomy.

Even harder to picture the Pakistanis employing the same safeguards:

Take the example of Ammar al-Baluchi. In the movie “Zero Dark Thirty,” the torture of al-Baluchi is depicted as revealing the key piece of intelligence identifying Osama bin Laden’s courier, Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti. In 2011, the CIA was able to find and kill bin Laden because it had tracked the movements of al-Kuwaiti.

The CIA’s rebuttal to the Senate report says al-Baluchi gave up much more specific information on al-Kuwaiti after he went through the agency’s harsh interrogations. The Senate report, however, says al-Baluchi gave up al-Kuwaiti first to the Pakistanis.

A footnote on page 399 of the Senate report says al-Baluchi was arrested along with another al-Qaeda operative, Khallad bin Attash, by Pakistani authorities on April 29, 2003. “Upon his arrest in Pakistan, Ammar al-Baluchi was cooperative and provided information on a number of topics to foreign government interrogators, including information on Abu Ahmad al-Kuwaiti that the CIA disseminated prior to al-Baluchi being transferred to CIA custody,” the footnote says.

Nonetheless, it’s hard to imagine that al-Baluchi’s interrogation by the Pakistanis met Geneva standards. A former senior Pakistani diplomat who spoke to me on condition of anonymity said it’s likely that al-Baluchi and other detainees mentioned in the report were tortured; threatened with torture; or told that their family members would be in danger if they did not cooperate. “After 9/11, there was enormous pressure on the Pakistani services to produce intelligence for the Americans,” this diplomat said. “I cannot believe al-Baluchi’s interrogation in 2003 would have met international standards.”

Other current and former U.S. intelligence officials told me that it was almost a certainty that al-Baluchi was at the very least threatened with torture when he was in a Pakistani jail.

Take another case:

In the case of Ramzi bin al-Shibh, an al-Qaeda operative picked up by Pakistani authorities on Sept. 11, 2002, the report implies that harsh interrogation did produce valuable intelligence. Shortly after his arrest, the report says, the Pakistanis sent bin al-Shibh to a third foreign government. The report doesn’t name that country, but it has been reported bin al-Shibh was sent to a jail in Morocco. In early 2003, the Moroccans sent bin al-Shibh to a CIA black site. While he was in Moroccan custody, CIA headquarters at first was dubious of the intelligence taken from bin al-Shibh, but CIA officers on the ground said the bulk of his information was useful intelligence.

Indeed, the reporting from bin al-Shibh contributed to learning about al-Qaeda plots in the Arabian peninsula and against Heathrow Airport outside London, according to the Senate report. “Personnel at CIA Headquarters concluded in 2005 that the most significant intelligence derived from bin al-Shibh was obtained during his detention in foreign government custody, which was prior to his rendition to CIA custody and the use of the CIA’s enhanced interrogation technique,” the report says.

Again, we don’t know for certain what happened at that Moroccan site, but we have a pretty good idea.

If there are terrorist suspects to interrogate, I’d rather have our boys with their IV drips, portable MRIs, and doctors on call than the Pakistanis with their electrodes or the Moroccans with their pliers. But then, I’m not a grandstanding Democrat faking outrage and indignation.


Not-Islam Watch

Do not confuse this with Islam. Accept no substitutes:

Pakistan’s prime minister vowed to show “no mercy” to the members of a mob that burned a Christian couple alive in an industrial kiln, as the number of villagers arrested in connection with the crime reached 44. Shahbaz Maseeh, 26, and his wife Shama Bibi, 24, were attacked by colleagues on Tuesday at the brick factory where they worked in Punjab province after word got out that Bibi had burned several verses from the Quran left behind by her dead father. The mob reportedly broke Bibi and Maseeh’s legs so they couldn’t run away and then threw them in an industrial kiln.

Setting fire to Quranic text is considered blasphemy in Pakistan. While technically punishable by death under strict Islamic law, it is more common for vigilante mobs to take matters into their own hands. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said in a statement Thursday that “no mercy” will be shown in punishing those responsible for the “unacceptable” crime. “A responsible state cannot tolerate mob rule and public lynching with impunity,” Sharif said. “The Pakistani state has to act proactively to protect its minorities from violence and injustice.”

That’s 44 people arrested for enforcing non-Islam.

Serious Koranic question: if someone set fire to a Koran, is it permissible to pee on it to put out the fire? If no other means to do so are available?


“Islam is a World Religion That Teaches Tolerance, Justice and Honor and Promotes Patience, Modesty and Balance” Watch

Yesterday, we shared a piece with you by a woman who converted to Islam—two months after the Islam-inspired atrocities of 9/11. She assured us that she condemned those acts, indeed all acts, of terrorism, bigotry, intolerance, and dishonor committed by “a few” that besmirched her newly-adopted faith.

I said then, and repeat now, that a person’s faith is of no concern to me. Just don’t pi** on my head and tell me it’s holy water.

Today’s example:

The Lahore High Court on Thursday upheld the death sentence of Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman convicted of blasphemy four years ago, as her lawyers vowed to appeal.

Bibi, a mother of five, has been on death row since November 2010 after she was found guilty of making derogatory remarks about Islam’s Prophet during an argument with a Muslim woman. “A two-judge bench of the Lahore High Court dismissed the appeal of Aasia Bibi but we will file an appeal in the Supreme Court of Pakistan,” said her lawyer Shakir Chaudhry.

Blasphemy is an extremely sensitive issue in Pakistan where 97 percent of the population is Muslim and unproven claims regularly lead to mob violence.

Two high-profile politicians—then Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer and minorities minister Shahbaz Bhatti—were murdered in 2011 after calling for reforms to the blasphemy law and describing Bibi’s trial as flawed.

Blasphemy, injustice, mob violence, assassinations—are we to blame these acts of intolerance on the 3% who are not Muslim? They are certainly only “a few”.

But no:

Over a dozen religious clerics, including Qari Saleem who brought forward the initial complaint against Bibi, were present at the court Thursday. “We will soon distribute sweets among our Muslim brothers for today’s verdict, it’s a victory of Islam,” said Saleem from outside the courtroom as the clerics congratulated each other and chanted religious slogans.

It’s Halloween in Lahore! Candy for all in this “victory of Islam”!

In a last effort to understand, what was the original charge?

I, Asia Bibi, have been sentenced to death because I was thirsty. I’m a prisoner because I used the same cup as those Muslim women, because water served by a Christian woman was regarded as unclean by my stupid fellow fruit-pickers.

That day, June 14, 2009, is imprinted on my memory. I can still see every detail.

That morning I got up earlier than usual, to take part in the big falsa-berry harvest. I’d been told about it by Farah, our lovely local shopkeeper. “Why don’t you go falsa picking tomorrow in that field just outside the village? You know the one; it belongs to the Nadeems, the rich family who live in Lahore. The pay is 250 rupees.”

Because it was Sunday, my husband Ashiq wasn’t working in the brickworks. While I was getting ready to go to work he was still fast asleep in the big family bed with two of our daughters, who were also worn out after a long week at school. I looked at them with love before I left the room, and thanked God for giving me such a wonderful family.

When I got to the field, around 15 women were already at work, picking away, their backs hidden by the tall bushes. It was going to be a physically exhausting day in such heat, but I needed those 250 rupees.

Some of the women greeted me with a smile. I recognized my neighbor, Musarat, who was the seamstress in my village. I gave her a little wave, but she turned back to the bushes again at once. Musarat wasn’t really an agricultural worker and I didn’t often see her in the fields, so I realized times must be hard for her family. In the end, it was just our lot to be poor, all of us.

A hard-faced woman dressed in clothes that had been mended many times came over to me with an old yellow bowl.

“If you fill the bowl you get 250 rupees,” she said without really looking at me.

I looked at the huge bowl and thought I would never finish before sunset. Looking at the other women’s bowls, I also realized mine was much bigger. They were reminding me that I’m a Christian.

The sun was beating down, and by midday it was like working in an oven. I was dripping with sweat and I could hardly think or move for the suffocating heat. In my mind, I could see the river beside my village. If only I could have jumped into that cool water!

But since the river was nowhere near, I freed myself from my bushes and walked over to the nearby well. Already I could sense the coolness rising up from the depths.

I pull up a bucketful of water and dip in the old metal cup resting on the side of the well. The cool water is all I can think of. I gulp it down and I feel better; I pull myself together.

Then I start to hear muttering. I pay no attention and fill the cup again, this time holding it out to a woman next to me who looks like she’s in pain. She smiles and reaches out . . . At exactly the moment Musarat pokes her ferrety nose out from the bush, her eyes full of hate:

“Don’t drink that water, it’s haram!”

Musarat addresses all the pickers, who have suddenly stopped work at the sound of the word “haram,” the Islamic term for anything forbidden by God.

“Listen, all of you, this Christian has dirtied the water in the well by drinking from our cup and dipping it back several times. Now the water is unclean and we can’t drink it! Because of her!”

It’s so unfair that for once I decide to defend myself and stand up to the old witch.

“I think Jesus would see if differently from Mohammed.”

Musarat is furious. “How dare you think for the Prophet, you filthy animal!”

Three other women start shouting even louder.

“That’s right, you’re just a filthy Christian! You’ve contaminated our water and now you dare speak for the Prophet! Stupid bitch, your Jesus didn’t even have a proper father, he was a bastard, don’t you know that.”

Musarat comes over as though she’s going to hit me and yells: “You should convert to Islam to redeem yourself for your filthy religion.”

I feel a pain deep inside. We Christians have always stayed silent: We’ve been taught since we were babies never to say anything, to keep quiet because we’re a minority. But I’m stubborn too and now I want to react, I want to defend my faith. I take a deep breath and fill my lungs with courage.

“I’m not going to convert. I believe in my religion and in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the sins of mankind. What did your Prophet Mohammed ever do to save mankind? And why should it be me that converts instead of you?”

Ohhh!! Why didn’t you say so? Now I understand. Tolerance and justice practically waft off the page. But to be serious for a moment, all it takes is the bigotry of “a few” for the “honor” of Islam to be sullied.

PS: I’ll keep tabs on this theme.


Sultana of Swat

We love Malala, the latest winner (co-winner) of the Nobel Peace Prize. Who doesn’t?

Besides her countrymen, that is:

Take that, Islamic extremists, anti-Muslim bigots, Pashtun-bashers and misogynists! Malala Yousufzai has become the youngest person to win any Nobel prize and, fittingly, did not appear before the media to respond for several hours because it was a school day, and the girl’s got priorities.

In Pakistan, news of the Nobel prize has led to an outpouring of accolades from official figures, led by the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, who called her “the pride of Pakistan”.

Also among the praise-singers is the director general of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the public relations wing of the military. All this is as it should be. But officialdom has refrained from commenting on the fact that the pride of Pakistan is unable to return to Pakistan because the Taliban remain too great a threat.

One can only praise Malala to the skies. She’s a remarkable, singular young woman. But her campaign for women’s education in her native land has only come true for her in England’s Midlands. Where it was already guaranteed. Please don’t misunderstand: I also would have given her the award. In fact, I say we take away Obama’s and give her that one too.

But practically, her efforts, no matter how righteous, have been about as fruitful as his. Malala is a heroine. Pakistan is still a basket case. We feel better about ourselves, which is I guess what matters.



In other news:

In an apparent ‘honour killing’, a 25-year-old pregnant woman was brutally beaten and stoned to death on Tuesday outside the high court here by her father and brothers for marrying the man of her choice.

Police said Farzana Parveen, resident of Faisalabad, had married Mohammad Iqbal of Jaranwala a few months ago against the wishes of her family.

The incident happened as the couple reached the court premises to record Farzana’s statement to defend her husband against allegations by her family that he kidnapped her and forced her to marry him.

Initially, the family members fired shots in the air and tried to snatch her from Iqbal.

After failing in their attempt, nearly 20 members of her family, including her father and brothers, attacked the couple with sticks and bricks before a crowd of onlookers in front of the high court of Lahore, said police official Naseem Butt.

That’s awful. Terrible. Disgusting.

But news?

Around 900 women were killed in Pakistan last by their families in honour killings, according to human rights commission of Pakistan, a private organization.

That’s almost three a day. I’m sorry for Farzana, but what makes her special? Take a number, honey.


14 Year Old Pakistani Boy Gives Life To Stop Suicide Bomber

At his school. The brave jihadi was planning to blow up a school.

A 14-year-old boy is being hailed as a hero in Pakistan for tackling a suicide bomber — dying at the main gate of his school and saving schoolmates gathered for their morning assembly.

Ninth-grader Aitazaz Hassan Bangash was on his way to the Ibrahimzai School on Monday in the Hangu district of northern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province when the bomber, dressed in a school uniform, asked him where the school was, the teen’s cousin told CNN.

Aitazaz and his cousin, Musadiq Ali Bangash, became suspicious, Musadiq said.

“The other students backed off, but Aitazaz challenged the bomber and tried to catch him. During the scuffle, the bomber panicked and detonated his bomb,” he said.

Rajab Ali, who also witnessed the bombing, told CNN that he saw Aitazaz throw a large stone at a boy trying to enter the school. The blast happened when Aitazaz grabbed him, he said.

Aitazaz and the bomber died at the scene. Witnesses say the blast injured two other people.
Iftikhar Ahmed, a Hangu district police officer, confirmed the details of the attack to CNN.
Hangu is a troubled district bordering Pakistan’s tribal areas. It is rife with sectarian violence, with attacks against Shia and Sunni Muslims.
“It was a great sacrifice to save the lives of hundreds of both Shia and Sunni students, who were in morning assembly,” Musadiq said.

There is talk about giving him posthumous awards, etc. I approve. And I think that the world should consider this and promptly give the IDF, Mossad, and possibly the entire civilian population of Israel awards for all of the suicide bombers they have stopped. Furthermore, the Israeli hospitals deserve awards for treating all the people, Jew and non-Jew alike, who were injured in Palestinian terror attacks. This is obvious. But somehow the world just can’t figure it out.

– Aggie



Another target to acquire, Mr. President:

The new head of the Pakistani Taliban, Mullah Fazlullah, has ruled out peace talks with the government, vowing revenge for his predecessor’s death.

Mullah Fazlullah? That can’t be his real name, can it? What’s his wife’s name, Banana Fana?

Oh yeah, go ahead and laugh:

Mullah Fazlullah was named the new leader six days after Hakimullah Mehsud was killed in a drone strike.

Mullah Fazlullah is a particularly ruthless commander whose men shot the schoolgirl activist Malala Yousafzai.

Okay, his bad-ass bona fides are legit. But how many eyes does he have? You can’t be a real mullah with both your eyes intact.

That’s what I’m talking about. Stare ‘em down, Omar. He’s got Bette Davis eye.

Anyhow, the Pakistani Talibani are hardly feeling forgiving toward President Obama for wasting their latest Mehsud:

“The talks about peace between Pakistan and Taliban leaders is just a trap of enemies and to distract the masses. All political parties that are part of government are considered to be our enemies.”

Shahidullah Shahid, another spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, or Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP), told Agence France-Presse news agency: “Holding peace talks is not even an issue to discuss – this government has no authority, it is not a sovereign government, it is a slave, a slave of America.

“Holding peace talks is a waste of time.”

Mehsud was killed when missiles struck his vehicle in the North Waziristan region on 1 November.

The Pakistani government reacted angrily. Interior Minister Chaudry Nisar Ali Khan said that the drone strike was “not just the killing of one person, it’s the death of all peace efforts”.

Hard to see how he’s wrong. I’m all for greasing these goons, but I’d like to think it’s part of a greater strategy. We take out a grandma here, a wedding party there, for every trophy we bag. And then another one pops up, fully sighted no less! As the song goes, is that all there is?

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What Happens When We Allow Iran To Build A Nuclear Bomb Or Two?

Saudi Arabia gets some of the same from Pakistan

Another example of the incompetence of the Obama administration.

Saudi Arabia has invested in Pakistani nuclear weapons projects, and believes it could obtain atomic bombs at will, a variety of sources have told BBC Newsnight.

While the kingdom’s quest has often been set in the context of countering Iran’s atomic programme, it is now possible that the Saudis might be able to deploy such devices more quickly than the Islamic republic.

Earlier this year, a senior Nato decision maker told me that he had seen intelligence reporting that nuclear weapons made in Pakistan on behalf of Saudi Arabia are now sitting ready for delivery.

Last month Amos Yadlin, a former head of Israeli military intelligence, told a conference in Sweden that if Iran got the bomb, “the Saudis will not wait one month. They already paid for the bomb, they will go to Pakistan and bring what they need to bring.”

Since 2009, when King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia warned visiting US special envoy to the Middle East Dennis Ross that if Iran crossed the threshold, “we will get nuclear weapons”, the kingdom has sent the Americans numerous signals of its intentions.

Etc. More at the BBC link. But I’ll ask the question that has haunted me since 2008, during the campaign: Is Obama stupid or malevolent? I know that his supporters are dopes, but what about him?

– Aggie


Why We Blow Up Grandmas

With sympathy and respect to the Waziristan family who traveled to Washington to testify how an American drone wasted grandma when they went out to pick okra (as we reported), this is why:


The U.S. ambassador to Islamabad was summoned to Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry on Saturday, a day after Pakistan Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud was killed by a U.S. drone strike.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry did not explain why the envoy was summoned. A U.S. State Department official confirmed the meeting to CNN but would not disclose details about it.

The State Department official would not discuss U.S. operations in Pakistan but stressed the Pakistan Taliban’s 2009 attack on a U.S. base in Afghanistan and claims of responsibility for a failed attempt to bomb Times Square in New York.

Mehsud, who had a $5 million U.S. bounty on his head for his alleged involvement in the 2009 attack , was killed in a drone strike in northwestern Pakistan on Friday, senior U.S. and Pakistani officials told CNN.

He was buried overnight, though the body was burned beyond recognition, Taliban sources said. The organization was scheduled to meet Saturday to pick a new leader, the sources said.

Saleem Mehsud, a journalist who is close to the Mehsuds and familiar with the Pakistan Taliban, told CNN on Saturday that the central shura, or council, of the Pakistan Taliban has approved Sheheryar Mehsud as its new chief.

Sheheryar Mehsud is from the Jangara area of South Waziristan and belongs to the Shabikheil sub-tribe within the larger Mehsud tribe, he said. That’s the same sub-tribe that Baitullah Mehsud, who led the Pakistan Taliban before Hakimullah Mehsud, belonged to.

I think I see their problem. (Have you seen Deliverance?) Their gene pool is more like a puddle.

Still, the family might have a point. There’s no shortage of Mehsuds to take over the Pakistani Taliban; but they had only one grandma. Nailing a terrorist leader isn’t going to put okra on their table.


Another Thing Obama Doesn’t Know?

We’re vaporizing Pakistani grandmas—is that what President Obama means by American exceptionalism?

Nine-year-old Nabila Rehman rested her head on the table.

Nabila, a shy girl with startling hazel eyes and red streaks in her dark hair, along with her father Rafiq and 13-year-old brother Zubair, have told the story of the day when a drone fell from the sky in their village in North Waziristan so many times. By Tuesday morning the tale was rote — even if this particular retelling was before U.S. lawmakers, at a briefing which was the first opportunity for members of Congress to hear directly from Pakistani victims of American drones.

It was October 24, 2012, the day before the Islamic holy day of Eid-al-Adha in North Waziristan. Zubair, Nabila, their little sister, five-year-old Asma, and some of their cousins were all in the fields beside their house as their grandmother, 67-year-old Momina Bibi, showed them how to tell when the okra was ripe for picking.

Zubair knew the drones were circling overhead; he has known their distinctive buzzing since he was even younger — a methodical zung, zung, zung, he says.

“It’s something that even a 2-year-old would know,” he said in Pashto, speaking to Al Jazeera through a translator. “We hear the noise 24 hours a day.”

Before the missile hit, he remembers hearing two clicks, like a trigger being pulled. Suddenly, day seemed to turn to night as they were enveloped in darkness and heat. Their grandmother, Momina Bibi, was thrown 20 feet away and killed instantly.

Zubair, Nabila and the other children wounded in the attack were taken to a hospital. Zubair had shrapnel lodged in his leg — an injury that would take expensive laser surgeries to heal — while Nabila looked down to see her hand bleeding.

“I tried to bandage my hand but the blood wouldn’t stop,” she said. “The blood kept coming.”

The Rehmans traveled halfway across the world, from their remote village of Tappi, to tell their story, and to urge lawmakers to put an end to the covert CIA program of “targeted killings” in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere. They also participated in an Amnesty International report about casualties of drones and a documentary by filmmaker Robert Greenwald, called Unmanned. According to the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, 376 total strikes have taken place in Pakistan, killing up to 926 civilians, and as many as 200 children.

The Obama administration, for its part, until recently did not even acknowledge the existence of the program.

See? He probably doesn’t even know. He didn’t know bubkes about Benghazi, about the IRS, about the NSA, about EdselCare—what’s he going to know about a grandma picking okra with her grandkids?

Ultimately, only five members of Congress arrived at the briefing to hear their testimony Tuesday morning: Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida, who organized the briefing, along with Reps. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., Rush Holt, D-N.J., John Conyers, D-Mich., and Rick Nolan, D-Minn.

I’m actually kind of ashamed only five congressmen showed up, none of them Republican. Still, maybe one of the Democrats can get word to Obama, and he can find out whose ass to kick.

From another account:

“What radicals had previously failed to achieve in my village,” al-Muslimi said, “one drone strike accomplished in an instant: there is now an intense anger and growing hatred of America,” adding that he has ”seen al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula use U.S. strikes to promote its agenda and try to recruit more terrorists.”

The drones are an important tool in counterterrorism, no doubt. But President Obama has a Big Problem here. Under President Bush, a rabidly ruthless press would hound him until he changed policy (see the successful surge in Iraq). This press corps is complicit—accessories before, during, and after the fact.

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Speaking Truth to Power

Just keep smiling, sweetie. You can say anything you want as long as you keep smiling.

She thought the Taliban reacted angrily to female empowerment. Hoo boy, is she in for a rude awakening:

The “Bravest Girl in the World” has stood up to President Barack Obama.

Malala Yousafzai, the 16-year-old shot by the Taliban for promoting girl’s education in her native Pakistan, confronted Obama at the White House on Friday about U.S. drone strikes.

In a meeting that included first lady Michelle Obama, the young activist challenged one of Obama’s premier counterterrorism strategies.

“I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling terrorism,” she said in a statement released today. “Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people. If we refocus efforts on education it will make a big impact.”

Well, she’s young. She would believe that. And this:

“I want to become a prime minister of Pakistan, and I think it’s really good. Because through politics I can serve my whole county. I can be the doctor of the whole country,” she said.

She’s a wonderful, remarkable young woman. I’m glad she survived the Taliban’s bullet. (Let’s hope she’s as lucky with the impending offensive from the Democrat-media complex.) But the Taliban has many, many more bullets. Which is why I’m glad we have many, many more Hellfire missiles.

It’s sad I’m stuck in that way of thinking, but it is what it is.


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