Aafia and Malala; A Tale of Two Pakistani Women

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Last Updated on July 1, 2019 by Hamad Subani

2014 Nobel Peace Prize co-winner Malala Yusufzai made it to Time Magazines’s 25 Most Influential Teens for highlighting intimidation of women in Pakistan. While becoming an overnight celebrity in the West, she generates mixed reactions and even hostility in Pakistan. Another Pakistani woman, Aafia Siddiqui, continues to suffer far more physical injury and mental trauma than Malala, and maybe even rape. She even witnessed her youngest infant succumb to fatal injuries during her arrest. While Aafia was quietly flushed down the memory hole in the West, She has reemerged in Pakistan as a symbol of a nation’s plight blight.

Who is Aafia Siddiqui?

Dr. Aafia Siddiqui at her graduation (1995)
Dr. Aafia Siddiqui at her graduation (1995)
The FBI's "retouched" version of the above photo. Imagine how "retouched" their story might be.
The FBI’s “retouched” version of the above photo. Imagine how “retouched” their story might be.

Visitors to this website usually look for some alternative analysis. The mainstream media would like us to believe that Aafia was some kind of evil Muslim genius, concocting all sorts of dangerous chemicals to kill beautiful Americans, and after being thwarted by your friendly neighborhood FBI, fled to Pakistan, and then to Afghanistan, to engage in close combat with American special forces, along with her three infants in tow. And that her stellar academic career in America focused on helping children was just a facade, just like those slimey Remoolians who get exposed and busted by the Men in Black. Even if one is dumb enough to believe this narrative, the obvious question is why didn’t she devote her efforts to serving her children and her husband, like any typical religious Muslim woman? Which brings the character of Mr. Husband into question, which will be discussed later.

The Aafia Movement of Pakistan has compiled interesting information about Aafia’s happier times in America. To quote,

Aafia Siddiqui was born in Pakistan in 1972, but spent her early years as a child in Zambia, until the second grade. Her mother worked with a non-profit women’s organization as a social worker, and her father was a practicing physician. At the age of 18, Aafia Siddiqui left her parents’ home and traveled to the United States to attend college. Her older brother had already settled in Texas, where she first came in 1990 to attend the University of Houston. While living in Texas, she won a nationwide essay competition about “how intercultural attitudes in America helped to shape a multinational world.” In 1992, she transferred to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on a full scholarship, and graduated with a degree in biology in 1995. During her time in Boston, she volunteered at the Martin Luther King School, and received awards for her community service. She was also active in student organizations, and worked for a humanitarian organization which collected medical and clothing supplies to send to women and children during the Bosnian War. Though Aafia Siddiqui continued to live in the United States under valid visas for many years after completing her education, she remains a citizen of Pakistan.

After her first two children were born, Aafia Siddiqui completed a Ph.D. in cognitive neuroscience at Brandeis University. She graduated in 2001, and specialized in the process of learning in children. Her dissertation, entitled “Separating the Components of Imitation”, discussed the conditions under which children learn most effectively through imitation. While at Brandeis, Dr.Siddiqui also taught a second grade class. Because her principal interest was in helping dyslexic and otherwise disabled children learn, she also hosted a playgroup in which she could help real children with the methods she devised in the laboratory.

Did all this good stuff contribute to her being on FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists? Would a woman seeking to help dyslexic children suddenly change her mind and start planning all sorts of chemical attacks on American cities and then go to Afghanistan to fight in close combat against American special forces with three infants in tow? Obviously not. Aafia was targeted by some very powerful American interests. The Powers That Be got very angry at her while she was at University in America. But not over her desire to help dyslexic children, while at the same time, living the American dream. The following are some of Aafia’s statements taken from a 1991 speech she made at Houston, the topic being “Women in Islam.” At that time, she was actively involved with the Muslim Students Association at MIT.

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[…..] It is my challenge, not only to every single person on the face of this planet earth, but also, if there is any civilization on any other planet. It is my challenge to them as well. That Islam is the best savior and protector of women. And I am saying this with all this confidence, not out of arrogance, but because I believe that Islam was revealed by Allah subhanahuwata-ala, the most just and merciful God. The God biased neither in favor of men, or women. The Creator and Sustainer of both men and women. Islam elevates women to a level that has no parallel.


my dear Muslim sisters, we, unlike the non-Muslim women, we do not have to prove anything to this world.

All we have to prove is to Allah subhanahuwata-ala that we are capable. Yes. We are capable of becoming true and ideal Muslim women.

[…..] Why is is I ask you, that today, we are the third world. We have lost the respect and dignity we enjoyed. We are apologetic and submissive. And to whom? To the disbelievers, the kuffar. Why is it today that sons of the calibre of Muhammad bin Qasim, Tariq bin Ziyad and Khalid bin Waleed are not born? Because we don’t have mothers of the calibre of Fatima, Zainab, Khawla and Asma.

[……] The other extreme is equally bad. There are people who are guilty of burying their women alive. Yes, today. Mentally burying them. By telling them they are inferior, third class, slaves of men. And may Allah forgive us, in the name of sunnah. May I ask whose sunnah they are following. This is not the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad. What is his sunnah? He, if his shoe would break, would mend it himself. And then he would run a race with his wife Aisha and win the race. So that she could also enjoy her stuff. These extremes, brothers and sisters, have driven more people away from Islam than we would like to believe. Not only women, men as well. Not only non-Muslims, Muslims as well.

[…..] Brothers and sisters, this right of education, by taking it away from women, what do we see? If a Woman has messed up ideas or non-Muslim ideas, or if she is totally ignorant of whats going on around her, in either case, can she be expected to raise a child, the model of a perfect Muslim?

The Beginning of Aafia’s Troubles

All of the above looks pretty reasonable and tame, and is unlikely to attract any attention from the FBI or the DHS. But what most of us forget is that this was said in a University setting. And my experience at Dalhousie University opened my eyes to the presence of really nasty creatures among the University Faculty. So nasty that I ended up writing a guide on just how to avoid them. Given that Western Universities are like small towns, divorced from the humdrum of the world around them, the Criminal Elite sometimes convert them into a parallel universe of their own liking, a laboratory where they crystallize their resentment towards the sheeple. While the Criminal Elite have huge, extended and patriarchal families, they strictly prescribe non-reproduction and homosexuality to their subject populations. And Universities become the place where pseudo-scientific arguments and theories for their agendas are manufactured and developed.

While Sponsoring and promoting homosexuality and non-reproduction for other families, the Rockefeller family happens to be strongly patriarchical themselves.
While Sponsoring and promoting homosexuality and non-reproduction for other families, the Rockefeller family happens to be strongly patriarchical themselves.

Now lets suppose that among the audience, there was a faculty member with ties to the Criminal Elite, lets call him Prof. Saul Göbler Picklestein. Prof. Saul teaches Women Studies. He pretends to be objective, but the reality is that he only wants to pedal feminism to the unwitting students who pay money to get brainwashed by him. But that’s not all. With the Western Criminal Elite expanding into Islamic countries, Prof. Saul was channeled a grant, funded partly by American taxpayers and partly by the Rockefeller Foundation, to research into how women in Muslim countries can be duped into abandoning their families and taking up feminism. While this will not free them from subservience to men (the manager at the workplace is still likely to be a man), it will still create a dysfunctionalism that is peculiar to Western societies, which works wonders for population control, and which enables the Criminal Elite and their extended families to dominate entire groups of weak, confused and isolated people. For this very purpose, a pilot program has been introduced at the University, by virtue of which an American NGO in Pakistan cherry-picks ten Westernized female students and sends them via scholarship, to attend Prof. Saul’s courses (Prof. Saul manages to seduce the most idealistic one and does a sex-for-grades with the illiterate one).

"Prof. Saul says we got a problem."
“Prof. Saul says we got a problem.”

Needless to say, the Criminal Elite become very aggressive at Universities, and like to thump around, picking fights and vendettas with anything that stands in their way. Given that the surrogate server class of Western societies rarely gives them any challenge or opposition, hearing credible opposition from a foreign student can make their temper shoot through the roof. Now when Aafia’s lecture started, Prof. Saul was expected to hear the usual apologetic stories of the backwardness and “abuse” of Muslim women, and how their traditional social norms were not adequate to deal with this grave injustice. In fact, the lecture preceding Aafia was on the practice of dowry and how it impoverished Muslim women. But along comes Aafia and tells everybody that all the years of Saul’s efforts mean nothing, and that Muslim women can solve their problems and take care of themselves, without any Western intervention, militarily or ideologically. And that the teachings of Islam are sufficient enough for Muslims to pull themselves out of the muck they got themselves into.

Prof. Saul facepalms throughout the lecture. He is worried that Aafia’s articulateness may soon undo millions of dollars worth of work that has gone into Muslim countries to push feminism. Something has to be done before people really start listening to her. A meeting is called after-hours, attended exclusively by the Criminal Elite. The higher ups among the Criminal Elite give some good news. 9-11 is in the making, and they desperately need some Muslim characters to populate the storyline. Why not give Aafia a role in the story? (On the other hand, when Hamad Subani enrolled in Dalhousie in September 2001, 9-11 was already over, and therefore the Criminal Elite tried to push him into some other roles, like their cheesy made-to-order terrorism stunts).

Enter Husband

Mr. Husband
Mr. Husband

When I was targeted by Criminal Groups among Dalhousie University’s faculty, I was surprised by the amount of time and effort they put into matching me up with one of their female operatives. When this didn’t work, “Muslim” operatives were sent my way, complete with hijabs. I can remember more than twenty different encounters. I often wonder what these malevolent creatures would do if I was dumb enough to give them a relationship. While Aafia was brilliant in her field, it is clear that she was naive and a bit too forgiving when it came to her relationships with her fellow Pakistani people. This is best evidenced by the fact that she married her future husband without ever meeting him beforehand, and the marriage ceremony was conducted over the telephone. This marriage turned out to be Aafia’s biggest mistake. While its easy to label her husband as abusive, at times the abuse seemed too deep. It was almost as if the enemies she had made in University had managed to step into her personal life, as opposed to sheer bad luck. And then, it was the husband’s activities that led to the initial allegations of terrorism against Aafia. While the truth of the matter may never be known, here are some unusual instances of the marriage.

Mr. Husband and his family were the first to propose marriage to Aafia. To quote,

On a visit home to Karachi, she had impressed the mother of a newly minted doctor. Mohammad Amjad Khan, or Amjad, as his family called him, was fresh out of medical school at Karachi’s Aga Khan University. His father, Agha Abdul Khan, was the wealthy and successful owner of a pharmaceutical factory. The family lived in a large two-story house behind a high wall near the American School. The Khans visited the Siddiquis to propose a marriage between Aafia and Amjad.

We are to assume that Mr. Husband was a Sunni Muslim like Aafia. But if he belonged to one of those cults, such as the Ismailis, which have a close relationship with the Western Criminal Elite, then Aafia was indeed in trouble.

Immediately after 9-11, Mr. Husband engaged in suspicious activity, which seemed to be intended at raising suspicion at Aafia. To quote,

Auditors at Fleet Bank also had filed a suspicious activity report on an $8,000 money transfer made from Amjad and Aafia’s account to Habib Bank in Pakistan on December 21, 2001.

Investigators then learned somebody using Aafia’s E-mail and the couple’s bank card had purchased night goggles, body armor, and military manuals on the Internet and ordered them to be delivered to Pakistan.

In the spring of 2002, the FBI came to question the couple about these purchases. Sharp says that Amjad told the FBI he had bought the equipment for big-game hunting in Pakistan. After the FBI’s visit, he returned the items. She says that Aafia was questioned only incidentally.

Mr. Husband became increasingly hostile and abusive towards Aafia. To quote the Aafia Movement of Pakistan,

Psychologist Thomas Kucharski, who performed a forensic psychological evaluation of Dr. Siddiqui in 2009, noted that Amjad Khan had admitted to at least one incident of domestic abuse, and that two of Dr. Siddiqui’s former professors at Brandeis stated that they had seen her with bruises on her face. Witness testimony and documents obtained by IJN describe an incident in June 2000 in which Amjad Khan threw a glass milk bottle at Dr. Siddiqui while she was holding their daughter, Mariam. Photographs of Dr. Siddiqui days later show her with a deep cut across her face.

Drs. Khan and Siddiqui, and their children, returned to Karachi in June 2002. The couple continued to quarrel, and Dr. Khan became increasingly hostile toward Dr. Siddiqui and her family. On August 15, 2002, Dr. Siddiqui’s father collapsed and died of a heart attack after an incident in which witnesses claim that Dr. Khan pushed him. A few days later, while Dr. Siddiqui was still pregnant with their youngest child, Suleman, Amjad Khan separated from her and immediately married another woman. His divorce from Dr. Siddiqui was not executed until many months later, in late 2002.

Contrary to what the mainstream media tells you, Aafia’s move back to Pakistan (June 26th 2002) was probably done at the insistence of her husband, not out of her passion to wage jihad in Pakistan. This was necessary in order to accuse her of links to Al Qaida later on. To quote,

Her husband Amjad Khan turns out to have been more fundamentalist in his religious beliefs than her and wanted to return to Pakistan to raise the children in an “Islamic” way while Aafia wanted to stay in America.

Her husband’s presumably non-genuine “fundamentalism” is further evidenced here:

Following the divorce, Dr. Siddiqui and Amjad Khan entered into a legal custody agreement. As part of the agreement, he required that the children were to receive an “exclusively” Islamic education, and would be forbidden from attending a school that operated in a “Western style or culture.”

Was this so that Aafia would be forced to stay in Pakistan for good, where it would be more easy to create connections between her and Al Qaida?  It seems Aafia did not fall for the ruse and returned to USA. If the United States really had anything against her, they could have easily prevented her entry, given that she was a Pakistani national. She left for Pakistan again in December 2002 to attend to her sick mother.  The Powers That Be were intent to keep Aafia in Pakistan, as this was necessary to entangle her with Al Qaida (and her subsequent imprisonment). And it seems Aafia was seeking to move back to USA around March 2003 with all her children for good, two of whom were American nationals. Abducting the family on American soil would create a new set of legal complications. In March 2003 that the FBI issued a vague “alert” for Aafia and her husband, claiming they were seeking information on the couple. This was probably meant to discourage Aafia from returning to USA.

While Aafia’s life will never be the same, husband has been cleared by American and Pakistani authorities, and he is practicing medicine in Karachi. He even left Pakistan for a brief visit to Saudi Arabia in June 2003, presumably to avoid the publicity following his ex-wife’s disappearance.

Enter the ISI

When Pakistanis express their anger over the Aafia tragedy, they always ignore the elephant in the living room, Pakistani Intelligence, or the ISI. When the Powers That Be created the nations of India and Pakistan after a bloody partition that resulted in the largest mass migration in history, displacing 14 million people and killing an additional 500,000, they had no intention to create a genuine Islamic State. Pakistan was meant to be a superficially Islamicized colony of NATO, and India was delegated to the Soviet Union, similar to the arrangement in North and South Vietnam, as well as North and South Korea (See my book for details).

American influence in Pakistan was exercised through certain elements in the Army. But the Army alone was not enough. Robert Cawthome, a British Major General, formed the ISI in 1948, and remained its Director General from 1950 to 1959. That’s 11 years after Pakistan gained independence from the British Empire. While all nations need intelligence agencies,

the ISI is more in line with Western Intelligence Agencies. That is, it serves less as an Intelligence Agency and more as a state-within-a-state.

After the departure of Cawthome and the British, cults and sects which had good relations with the British, such as the Ismailis, were pushed forward to control Army and Intelligence Departments. Like the CIA, the ISI is fairly compartmentalized. This allows for the characteristic lack of accountability that is found in Western Intelligence Agencies. Sadly, the Pakistani people seemed to have resigned themselves to such painful arrangements, mainly out of fear of India.

There is no doubt that the ISI was involved in her abduction, and there are several indications that either the CIA or the FBI directly participated in the abduction. In April 2010, a man contacted the International Justice Network with a tape recording of his conversation with Imran Shaukut, Superintendant of Police for Sindh Province. In the recording, Shaukat claimed to have arrested Aafia and handed her over to the ISI back in March 2003. The ISI then handed her over to the CIA. Misinformation was circulated by the ISI that she was an American citizen (she never was), and this helped Pakistani officials absolve themselves from responsibility. The Aafia movement describes her abduction as thus:

One day in late March 2003, Dr. Siddiqui left her mother’s home and headed to the Karachi airport in a taxi cab with her three small children – Ahmed (age 5), Mariam (age 3), and baby Suleman (age 6 months). Dr. Siddiqui has said that she was on the way to visit her maternal uncle in Islamabad when she was abducted (according to the report of a delegation of Pakistani Senators who met with her after she was brought to the U.S. in 2008). However, neither she nor the children ever arrived at their destination, and the family did not hear anything from Dr. Siddiqui or the children for the next five years.

The next five years of Aafia’s whereabouts remain a mystery.

Journalist Yvonne Ridley claims Aafia spent those years in solitary confinement at Bagram as Prisoner 650.  But it is clear that she and her kids were flown to USA, and maybe even to Guantanamo Bay for sadistic sexual  torture sessions. For those in the know, such a life is business-as-usual for many unfortunate American citizens. On 26 May 2004, the United States listed her among the seven “most wanted” al-Qaeda fugitives even though she was clearly in American custody. It seems The Powers That Be were overconfident no one would figure out. As if to further substantiate the myth that Aafia was in Pakistan, her ex-husband claimed he saw her at Islamabad airport in April 2003 as she disembarked from a flight with their son and he helped ISI identify her. He said he again saw her two years later, in a Karachi traffic jam.

Whoops! Gotta Cover the Cover-Up

The Powers That Be thought that the disappearance of Aafia and her children would be forgotten, just like the disappearance of hundreds of other people in Pakistan. But as attention of the Pakistani people started to focus on the case, The Powers That Be had to change strategy. Since she was never an American citizen, they could not claim the pretext of taking her to her country of nationality. Since there was no real evidence of her being a threat to America, kidnapping her and moving her to America could not be satisfactorily explained either. She was thus flown to back to Pakistan. Some ISI operatives pretended to be sympathetic to her, and goaded and brainwashed her to join the Taliban. This would create the evidence trail that was needed arrest her once again, and to lock her up indefinitely in Guantanamo Bay as a threat to America. In order to facilitate her joining the Taliban, the ISI gave her a phoney mission to infiltrate Al Qaida in Pakistan. During the mission, Aafia managed to visit  her uncle in Islamabad in 2008. To quote her uncle,

Siddiqui told him she had been in both Pakistani and American captivity since 2003, but was vague on the details. “I was in the cells but I don’t know in which country, or which city. They kept shifting me,” she said. Now she had been set free but remained under the thumb of intelligence officials based in Lahore. They had given her a mission: to infiltrate al-Qaida in Pakistan. But, Siddiqui told her uncle, she was afraid and wanted out. She begged him to smuggle her into Afghanistan into the hands of the Taliban. “That was her main point,” he recalled. “She said: ‘I will be safe with the Taliban.'”

While in custody in Afghanistan, Ahmed was visited by a U.S. Consular official who told him his real name was Ahmed Siddiqui, and that his brother was dead.

It seems this ploy didn’t work and Aafia quickly lost all interest in joining the Taliban. Therefore they flew her and her son to Ghazni in Afghanistan, where after being sedated with drugs, they were left wandering in the town with documents and devices that would incriminate them for terrorism. When they were arrested, an incident was staged on 18th July 2008, where Aafia allegedly tries grabbing a US soldier’s rifle and gets shot in the process. Pretext was thus manufactured to try and imprison her in the United States. Hamid Karzai arranged for her son to return to Pakistan, where he joined Aafia’s family. To quote on Ahmed’s family reunion,

Upon arrival in Islamabad, Ahmed was again held for several days for questioning (this time by Pakistani officials) prior to being released to the custody of his grandmother and aunt in Karachi. He has since told police that on the day he was separated from his family, he remembered being in a taxi with his mother, younger sister and baby brother. They were together when they were stopped and forcibly removed from the taxi and put in separate cars. He also remembered seeing his baby brother, Suleman (who was only 6 months old at the time) fall from the vehicle to the ground — bleeding. Ahmed also told police he could remember little more than that, because someone forced him to inhale a chemical which made him fall unconscious.

Ahmed’s younger sister, Mariam, did not reemerge until more than a year later. She was found wandering around on the street near her grandmother’s house in Karachi. She was alone, and was wearing a string around her neck with a piece of paper that had her grandmother’s address written on it.

DNA testing later confirmed that Mariam was indeed the missing daughter of Dr. Siddiqui. Interestingly, at the time she was found, Mariam spoke only English, and with an American accent. She did not understand or speak Urdu.

As earlier mentioned, in April 2010, a man contacted the International Justice Network with a tape recording of his conversation with Imran Shaukut, Superintendant of Police for Sindh Province. In the recording, he claimed that Mariam had arrived in Pakistan 5-6 months before being forwarded to Aafia’s family. It is unclear where she was being held. Neither is it clear what Americans were doing to her.

Najeeb Ahmed was one Pakistani journalist who first raised awareness about the case. To quote,

On December 9, 2009, Mr. Ahmed addressed a crowd at a public rally, where he stated that Dr. Siddiqui had been captured by Pakistani forces and handed over to the FBI. Mr. Ahmed added that Dr. Siddiqui had first been interrogated in Pakistan, but then later moved to Afghanistan where she was imprisoned for several years. The day after making this public statement, Mr. Ahmed died unexpectedly, reportedly as a result of sudden heart failure. His research files on Dr. Siddiqui’s disappearance were never recovered.

While Aafia was recovering and was on a heavy dose of medication, Agents Bruce Kamerman and Angela Sercer claimed to have extracted a highly dubious confession from Aafia claiming her allegiance to Al Qaida. During Aafia’s later trial , she claimed she had been tortured, and was threatened with harm to her children unless she wrote incriminating documents in her handwriting. Representatives of the Pakistani Government never bothered to see her. Aafia was sentenced to 86 years in prison and is currently at a maximum-security federal prison at a Naval base in Fort Worth, Texas.

Other Assorted BS

This section became necessary because there are so many unsubstantiated allegations flying around. And they are only meant to do one thing; to obfuscate the fact that some Criminal Elite in an American University arranged the kidnapping, detention, torture and sexual abuse of a foreign national and her minor children for their personal vendetta.

  • Aafia solicited money for the Al Kifah Refugee Center which has been tied to al-Qaeda (Nobody had a clue what Al Kifah was before 9-11).
  • She took a 12-hour pistol training course at the Braintree Rifle and Pistol Club (Yawn…aren’t guns part of the American Experience?).
  • She wore a head scarf and thanked Allah when an experiment was successful (Allah, not Osama).
  • She attended a mosque outside the city where she stored copies of the Quran and other Islamic literature for distribution (Not TNT).
  • She also helped establish the Dawa Resource Center, a program that distributed Qurans and offered Islam-based advice to prison inmates (Better than sending them DVDs of Prison Break).
  • Opened a post office box for Majid Khan, an alleged al-Qaeda operative, who was listed as a co-owner of the box (Confession obtained by Agents Kamerman and Sercer while Aafia was recovering at Bagram under the influence of drugs!).
  • Married a man named Ammar Al-Baluchi in 2003, an alleged Al-Qaeda operative (Confession obtained by Agents Kamerman and Sercer while Aafia was recovering at Bagram under the influence of drugs!).
  • Was issued a fatwa by Mufti Abu Lubaba in 2006 to study germ warfare (Confession obtained by Agents Kamerman and Sercer while Aafia was recovering at Bagram under the influence of drugs!).
  • Bought $19 million worth of blood diamonds in Monrovia, Liberia, immediately prior to the 11 September 2001, attacks (Siddiqui’s lawyer maintained credit card receipts and other records showed that she was in Boston at the time).
  • Khalid Sheikh Muhammad claimed Aafia was a courier for those “blood diamonds” (After being waterboarded 183 times).
  • When Aafia was arrested at Ghazni, she was carrying a bag that had a number of documents written in Urdu and English describing the creation of explosives, chemical weapons, Ebola, dirty bombs, and radiological agents (which discussed mortality rates of certain of the weapons), and handwritten notes referring to a “mass casualty attack” that listed various US locations and landmarks (including the Plum Island Animal Disease Center, the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, Wall Street, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the New York City subway system), She also had “numerous chemical substances in gel and liquid form that were sealed in bottles and glass jars.” (She was dropped into Ghazni, dazed and sedated with drugs, so that she could be immediately arrested).
  • One such document was about a ‘theoretical’ biological weapon that did not harm children (Nice touch on Aafia’s well-known love of children).
  • She married Khalid Sheikh Muhammad (Haha, I made this one up, but would you notice?)


CENTER: Malala at New York on 26th September 2013. RIGHT: Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif. LEFT: White Man Sans Burden
CENTER: Malala at New York on 26th September 2013. RIGHT: Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif. LEFT: White Man Sans Burden

While Aafia was forgotten by the rest of the world only to make a comeback in Pakistan by popular demand, Malala is more like a forced meme in Pakistan, while being a genuine celebrity to the rest of the world. Its not that her cause is without merit. The shooting can never be justified. Even the suffering and trauma she and her schoolmates faced may be genuine. But consider the following:

  • Her father is a well known private school Mogul. Needless to say, private schools stand to benefit if children (both boys and girls) are forced into them, regardless if such education is beneficial to the pupils or not. And with NGOs pouring big money into private schools in Pakistan, business has never been so good.
  • Malala began her career as an anonymous blogger from Swat Valley for the BBC. She was to report on how the war with the Taliban was affecting her, and girls in particular. The BBC never bothered doing a diary for Aafia’s family.
  • After the BBC Diary ended, she was chosen by by New York Times reporter Adam B. Ellick for a documentary. Sadly, Aafia gets no major league documentaries.
  • In July 2012, Malala participated in the national Marxist Summer School, and claimed before the 32nd congress of the Pakistani IMT that “I am convinced Socialism is the only answer and I urge all comrades to take this struggle to a victorious conclusion. Only this will free us from the chains of bigotry and exploitation.” In other words, Malala is clearly anti-religion. The fact that she readily succumbs to a totalitarian ideology like Socialism which has brought us World Wars is either pure naivete or something more sinister.
  • Malala has recieved up to 38 awards and counting from all over the world.
  • Malala has been largely silent on the issue of drone strikes (which also kill women) and the detention of Aafia, even though she could have voiced her concerns over these issues on an international level.

Maybe the comparison between Aafia and Malala as two suffering Pakistani women is not apt. In happier times, Aafia is quoted as saying

[……][In Islam a woman] is given respect, protection and dignity, things which no other society, specially what the West has not given her. The hijab is not a restriction. It allows a woman to be judged by her content. Not by her packaging. By whats written on the pages, not the pretty artwork on the cover. We are judged by who we are, by what we have to say, not by what we have to say while we are saying it. Islam does not see the woman as a prized cow, to be paraded before the world.

But Malala doesn’t seem to have any issue with parades. She shares her position among Time Magazines’s 25 Most Influential Teens with five other females whose claim to influence is professional movie acting before huge digital audiences, the “prized cows” whom Aafia detests. Malala is happy in this crowd. She has clearly found her place.

Aafia on the other hand, represents the skeletons knocking inside Pakistan’s closet.

A nation was birthed from disaster under the noble banner of Islam, only to be hijacked by a ruthless military-intelligence complex, commandeered by the traditional overseas adversaries of Islam. While most Pakistanis are empathic in their support for Aafia, few are willing to examine these skeletons, or point a finger at the ISI’s role in processing the abduction of Aafia and her family, as well as the subsequent coverup. Neither will they ask why the man who killed Osama Bin Laden is sitting in a Pakistani prison. They would rather live with the thought of a neighboring or overseas enemy rather than contemplate the possibility that Pakistan had already been conquered by an invisible force, long before the Americans came.


1 Response

  1. Abdul GaniNo Gravatar says:

    Victim of Blind assessment.

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