No one is safe in the Taliban’s war against the Afghani Government-sponsored school system. In the Taliban’s eyes, to destroy the schools is to prove the government weak and unable to provide security. To make their point, the Taliban have no qualms with massacring innocent preteen schoolgirls.
“Schoolgirls in the Gunsights of the Taliban” by Barry Bearak for Scotland on Sunday:
WITH their teacher absent, 10 students were allowed to leave school early. These were the girls the gunmen saw first, 10 easy targets walking hand-in-hand through the blue metal gate and on to the winding dirt road.
A 13-year-old named Shukria was shot in the arm and the back, and teetered into an adjacent wheat field. Zarmina, her 12-year-old sister, ran to her side, listening to the wounded girl’s precious breath and trying to help her stand. But Shukria was too heavy to lift and the two gunmen, sitting astride a single motorbike, sped closer.
As Zarmina scurried away, the men took a more studied aim at those they had already shot, finishing off Shukria with bullets to her stomach and heart. Then the attackers seemed to succumb to the frenzy they had begun, forsaking the motorbike and fleeing on foot in a panic, two bobbing heads – one tucked into a helmet, the other swaddled by a handkerchief – vanishing amid the earthen colour of the concealing wheat.
Six girls were shot here on the sunny afternoon last month; two of them died.
Simply horrible. Can any normal human being justify the shooting innocent little girls for going to school?
The girls are not the only targets; their mothers are under attack as well.
Although the power of the Taliban has been greatly reduced in Afghanistan since the 2001 US-led invasion, slowly but surely their influence, especially in the tribal south, is returning.
In Badakshan, all women must get permission from their husbands before being allowed to visit a doctor.
Women teachers are regularly subjected to beatings and assaults from roaming Taliban gangs.
Mothers who send their children to school are also targeted by the thugs, who try to intimidate them into keeping their youngsters at home.
Forced marriages and domestic violence feature regularly in the lives of many women who live in the south and eastern provinces of the country.
Although more women are working in the media now, they are under constant threat. Shaima Rezayee, a popular MTV-style presenter, was shot dead after receiving death threats in 2006.
Crossposted from The American Israeli Patriot.