Malala Yousafzai is the author of the new book I am Malala: The Girl Who Was Shot by the Taliban. She has come to the United States to discuss her story and to advocate for the education of girls who live under oppression. She made an appearance on the Daily Show with John Stewart, but it’s her most recent engagement that has the nation talking.
Yesterday, Malala Yousafzai met with President Barack Obama, and asked him to stop using drones.
“I thanked President Obama for the United States’ work in supporting education in Pakistan and Afghanistan and for Syrian refugees,” Yousafzai said after the meeting. “I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling terrorism. Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people. If we refocus efforts on education it will make a big impact.”
Yousafzai’s comments come on the heels of a new discussion that has emerged in the United States, namely that of foreign policy ‘blowback’. It concerns the question over whether the hyper-interventionist foreign policy of the United States leads to national isolation, in that the world hates us and people are driven to terrorism over U.S. invasions, coups of their governments or our occupations.
Former Congressman Ron Paul speaking on the subject once stated, “I believe very sincerely that the CIA is correct when they teach and talk about blowback. When we went into Iran in 1953 and installed the shah, yes, there was blowback. A reaction to that was the taking of our hostages and that persists. And if we ignore that, we ignore that at our own risk. If we think that we can do what we want around the world and not incite hatred, then we have a problem. They don’t come here to attack us because we’re rich and we’re free. They come and they attack us because we’re over there. I mean, what would we think if we were –if other foreign countries were doing that to us?”
It’s worth considering that perhaps the rest of the world would appreciate Americans who lead by example and committed to the principles of due process.
But, perhaps that’s too much to ask anymore.