The outspoken Pakistani schoolgirl activist Malala Yousufzai, who was shot in the head by Taliban gunmen, has been discharged today from Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham as an inpatient. Three months have passed since the 15-year old girl had been shot in the head and left for dead simply for publicly speaking out about the rights of females in Pakistan to have an education. She has recovered enough to leave the hospital, speak, and walk on her own accord, but needs more surgery to repair her shattered skull.
The teenager had been shot in the head for have the nerve to publicly announce that girls should be able to learn to read and write and get an education in whatever area of knowledge and skills interest them. As Malala Yousufzai left Birmingham hospital, the 15-year-old Pakistani girl hugged her nurses and smiled, being able to walk on her own, according to the January 4, 2012 Associated Press article by, Danica Kirka and Sherin Zada, " Pakistani girl shot by Taliban leaves UK hospital."
After being flown to England to heal and have specialized surgeries due to a bullet in the head, Malala Yousufzai finally has been released on January 2, 2012 by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham. She and her father are returning home, for the time being, to a temporary home in England since the girl needs more surgeries in the near future. See today's news article, Malala's recovery crosses key threshold - CNN.com.
Her parents and Malala, will live with her parents and two brothers in Britain while she continues to receive treatment. She will be admitted again in the next month for another round of surgery to rebuild her skull. It's going to be a long time before the bones in her skull finally heals as much as it can. See, Malala Yousafzai has the look of a leader in the making.
Experts have been optimistic that the teenager has a good chance of recovery because the brains of teenagers are still growing and can better adapt to trauma, the Associated Press article reports. She is being sent home to be with her parents and two brothers. She's not going back to Pakistan for now, at least not only because of her safety, but because she needs more surgeries. Her father looks forward to the time when he can bring the entire family back to Pakistan, where Malala has friends and relatives.
Targeted by the Taliban
The reason she became the victim of an assassination attempt by the Taliban is because she objected to the group's insistence that female children and adults limit their access to education and stifle themselves when it comes to learning. Malala had been shot while returning home from school in Pakistan's scenic Swat Valley on Oct. 9. Women's rights in Pakistan has been a struggle seen around the world. Her photo even appeared in Time magazine's mention of "Person of the Year" for 2012.
The frightening issue is what happens when her surgeries are done since the militants have threatened to target Malala again because they say she promotes "Western thinking." Even though British police have provided security for her at the hospital, women around the world worry what will happen as she becomes an adult.
The bullet in her head almost hit her spine
The bullet in her head traveled close to her spine, where she required special surgeries in Britain, paid for by Pakistan. At least her father found a way to earn a living in England. Pakistan also appointed Malala's father as its education attaché in Birmingham, England for at least three years.
Malala at least has time to heal in Britain for the time it takes her to have the required surgeries and recover at least to the point of continuing the education she wants. Back in Pakistan, most people in her native Swat Valley were filled with joy at the news that she was able to leave the hospital and be with her family.
Will she return to her home town in the future? The issue is how tense the situation will be at that time in the Swat valley. The big concern is where the Taliban will target next when it comes to a school. Even though her father vows to return to Pakistan when the teenager is healed, the issue is how safe is her homeland for her in that particular area, and what happens to other women wanting an education in that area?