Monday, April 13, 2009

Exposing the Flogging-Video: Bad Idea?

So I have come across quite a few people who, believing that Samar Minallah was the one who recorded and internationally exposed the video of the flogging of the 17-year-old girl from Swat, condemn Samar's actions.
Shouldn't we question the accusation that Samar Minallah made this video in the first place? I highly doubt she was the one who recorded it or was a personal witness to it all, even. Many sources indicate that Samar merely circulated the video. And she shouldn’t be punished for having done so, because a LOT of people did that, too! Including me! And if it wasn't to be circulated, the event should never have taken place in the first place -- if those who carried out the action are so ashamed of it now or are cowards enough to say, "This was only for those who were present at the moment! No one was supposed to even get a glimpse of it!"

Samar has been interviewed, and her comments have appeared in various sources, but that doesn't necessarily mean that she was behind the making of the clip. All the stuff she's said to these sources, I would've said them myself, too, had I been the one being interrogated.

Now, the reason some people disagree with the publication of this video is that ... well, one reason is that they think it’s fake. Well! Let it be fake! It’s REALITY for Pashtuns, nonetheless! The public flogging is still nothing compared to the beheading and butchering my people have witnessed! And it still symbolizes our pain and mistreatment; it still illustrates our fate if the Taliban continue ruling us.

There are other people, though, who are angered by the video because they believe it has put the girl's reputation at stake now. But what kind of a society and humans living in that society would prefer a girl's "reputation" or honor to publicizing the injustices done to them? This girl represents the people of Swat and other regions where we are being ruled by Taliban. What's been done to her will no doubt be the fate of every girl who does something that the Taliban don't personally like! Did they have evidence for her "crime"? No, they didn't. Just like that, they can catch any girl and claim she did something that Islam doesn't allow and then punish her in such a humiliating manner.

Besides, right now is not the time for us to worry about our personal family honor/reputation. How dare we think of such a selfish thing when our whole RACE is being dishonored and mistreated by the Taliabn (and/or Pakistan army/govt)? And what about the reputation of Pukhtuns as a whole, as we are degraded on our own soil?
If this were my own sister, I, too, would be up for demanding justice for the hell she suffered. Or would I be expected to remain silent about it just because exposing her injustice would stain my family reputation?

The reason I am glad about the worldwide exposure of this video is
that, you see, no one heard our screams as we silently shouted for help through our desperate sighs -- for the world to see us suffering in the hands of the Taliban throughout these last couple of dreadful years. We suffered seeing at least four headless bodies hanging on poles (in Green Chauk, Mingora – now referred to as “Khooni Chauk”!), and people worldwide thought it too trivial a matter to be discussed or looked into; we suffered watching hundreds of our schools being burned to ashes, and the world didn't think it was important enough to be mourned over or to help those who were going to be affected by it; we suffered the butchering of our fathers and brothers and sons – our sole breadwinners – and no one deemed it necessary to offer us food and clothing; we suffered the destruction of our safe homes, and the billions of citizens of the world remain focused on themselves (I forgive those who are suffering themselves); we suffered reluctantly fleeing our own land in hopes of a better place, and witnesses just watched us leave. And the list goes on.
Clearly, no one was hearing our cries or sharing our pain with us. The world merely served as a useless spectator.

Now ... now, FINALLY, our voice is being heard! Our pain is FINALLY appealing to the world! That only through this emotional, heartbreaking video of a girl's being flogged in public by REAL sinners (the Taliban and the girl’s OWN brother), and our voice is being heard universally. People at my school know of Pashtuns and our genocide now! (It doesn't matter that they may not be able to help us; awareness is still important.) Still, we condemn the publication and universal exposure of this video? People don't seem to have talked against the TALIBAN as openly, as widely as they are doing about Samar. How disheartening.

Anyways ... so I don't think it was a bad idea at all. If we had hidden this from the world, too, then NONE of our injustices would've been revealed; at least one has been revealed this way :)


  1. I watched this video and doubted its authenticity. Even if its all true or not I have only one thing to say, Religion and cruelty cant ever get along. If its a new venture by so-called Taliban they would have to realize this very point.

  2. Religion and extremism can never get along; often, the extremist side wins, and humanity is destroyed. So yeah :S The Taliban have been doing such barbaric things for quite a while now, and I can't predict how long they'll be doing it on my soil.


Dare to opine :)

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