Taliban leaders claim that they didn't actually shoot Malala Yousafzai in the head because of her determination to get an education—they did it because she was making "a jokes" out of Islam. (I don't really get the point of that distinction, nor does it seem particularly sincere, but okey dokey.) And, they say, they'd totally shoot her again if they had the chance, and they'd be proud to cause the young activist's death. Cool story, bros.
"We targeted Malala Yousafzai because she attacked Islam and make a jokes on Islam, if we found her again then we would definitely try to kill her and will feel proud on her death," Shahidullah Shahid told ABC News. "We didn't target her for spreading education in her area, we targeted her for making jokes of Islam, and that was enough reason for attacking her."
Malala was 11 years old when she took a stand against the Taliban, who had issued an edict that all girls' schools should be closed. She began advocating for the right to go to school, writing an anonymous blog for the BBC and appearing in a New York Times documentary.
Her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, ran a girls' school in the SWAT Valley, and had been targeted for death by the Taliban. And Malala's increasing visibility put her at risk as well.
"I wasn't scared, but I had started making sure the gate was locked at night and asking God what happens when you die," Malala wrote in her autobiography "I Am Malala," excerpted in Sunday's Parade magazine.
Malala—now 16—recently became the youngest person ever nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, and continues to work even more fiercely as an activist to expand women's educational opportunities in Pakistan. (She's also being interviewed by Diane Sawyer tonight, and she's the subject of a 20/20 special this Friday.) So, Taliban dudes, that's how well your first attempt to silence Malala worked out. Nice work.
Images via Getty.