Tag Archives: north waziristan

The world right now, let me tell ya. #NorthWaziristan ft. #Palestine

First of all, Falasteen Zindabad.

Apartheid is happening in Palestine right now. To me, arguing about it doesn’t even make sense at this point. It’s a fact that hospitals, schools, children, and elderly people in Palestine have been targeted in huge numbers, to the point that this “conflict” is completely one-sided. I don’t have a whole lot of patience for any arguments against this anymore. If you still feel like this is a two-sided conflict, all I can tell you is to get a new, less-biased news source in your life. Obviously, #IStandWithPalestine.

Moving on to something that has been in the news literally never.

Okay not literally, thanks to Al Jazeera.

But almost never.

North Waziristan, Pakistan.

The Pakistani government has launched a huge air and ground offensive in north western Pakistan, particularly the North Waziristan province, in an attempt to eliminate the Pakistani Taliban. As proud as I want to be of the Pakistani government for doing this, some people have been questioning the motives behind this attack, with claims of various conspiracies. I mean, I would think the government is putting their genuine effort into this, especially after the attack on a major airport in Sindh province that happened recently. But as I don’t know a whole lot about the government aspect of this, what I will speak on is the sacrifice of the people of North Waziristan. Thousands have been forced to flee their homes, to avoid becoming casualties of this air strike, many into Afghanistan. And like, they’re not even mad, because they know it’s for a good cause. But it’s summer right now, and it was also just Ramadan. So conditions haven’t exactly been ideal. Not that conditions are ever ideal for fleeing your home. Some families have returned to find destroyed homes. And my thing is, why hasn’t this been in the news more? These people are leaving their homes for our safety. The Pakistani Taliban is not just a danger to them, but, when looking at it’s roots and long term effects, to the world. In Pakistan, these IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons), have gotten more attention. The Panjab government has pledged at least 2,000 new houses to the IDPs. Which is nice. Really really nice. Unfortunately, there are ¬†more than 2,000 IDPs. There are actually more than 700,000 IDPs from this situation. That’s .7 million.

Al Jazeera has some stuff on this whole thing: http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2014/07/pictures-pakistan-offensive-co-2014714133154188322.html

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2014/07/pictures-pakistan-troubled-tirah-20147114547630421.html <–This one mentions the Sikh community in the area ūüôā

My heart is with Palestine and Pakistan ‚̧

-M

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NABILA UR REHMAN: WHY YOU SHOULD KNOW THIS NAME, AND WHY YOU DON’T ALREADY

The West has shown Malala Yousafzai so much support in her campaign for girls’ education. Her name is a household name, and it should be. She is an amazing, brave, Pakistani girl. Like, I love Malala, okay? That ain’t even in question.

In fact, she’s been up to some amazing things lately, including backing a campaign started by girls in the U.K for the education of female genital mutilation,¬†and¬†speaking up for the children of Syria.

But there’s another brave Pakistani girl whose life was changed forever after an attack in 2012, just like Malala’s was. Her name is ¬†Nabila ur Rehman

Like Malala’s dad, Nabila’s father is a school teacher in Northern Pakistan. And like Malala, she was targeted by a force that should have killed her. But unlike Malala, that force was the U.S, not the Taliban.

Nabila and her 13 year old brother were gathering okra in a field with their grandmother on the day of the attack. A drone overhead fired more than once, killing their grandmother, pictured below.

 

Reports claimed that the drone killed as many as 5 militants, yet it killed none.

Nabila made the trek to Washington D.C from her village in Pakistan. The nine year old, her thirteen year old brother, and her father were scheduled to testify to Congress about the way the U.S’s drone policy affected their lives. Watch the testimonies here. Out of hundreds of Congress members, five showed up to listen to the family recount the day their grandmother was killed by the U.S government. It was the day before the holiday of Eid. Zubhair, Nabilia’s older brother, required sugery to remove shrapnel from his leg, but his family could not afford it. It was months before Zubhair’s family could raise enough money to pay for the operation. But no operation can change the fact that he, along with other children like him, are no longer safe to play outside. The family testified in Urdu, and required an interpreter, who wept while translating their words.

Stories like those of Nabila and her family are what took me off the fence about our drone policy, and made me ¬†against the use of drones. Nabila’s family, and countless others, were never compensated for their medical bills. I am ashamed that my government kills and injures innocent people, and does not even do so much as pay for the operations they need to repair the damage. Drones have been effective in killing a number of militants. But, as Obama himself has said, “To say a military tactic is legal, or even effective, is not to say it is wise or moral in every instance.” The numbers of militants killed by drones are misreported, as are the numbers of civilians killed. If this is our drone policy, I cannot support it.

On October 9th, 2012, Malala Yousafzai narrowly escaped death when the Taliban shot her. We have since welcomed her to our country, interviewed her on our talk shows, and allowed her to meet our president. Malala lives in England, and is an honorary citizen of Canada. She has met the Queen of England. Malala truly deserves all of this and more. But in the same month of the same year that Malala was shot, another young girl narrowly escaped death. She left her villiage to come testify to the Congress of the United States, in the hopes that they would listen to what she had to say, and that she could prevent what happened to her to happen to others. We sent her back home. I cannot help but think that we celebrate Malala because her oppressors are the Taliban, while we ignore Nabila and her family because their oppressors are us.

-M

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