Earlier this week Opposing Views reported on American company recently awarded a slew of good press after saying they turned down a contract to provide rifles to the Pakistani Army out of fear that their weapons would be used against U.S. soldiers. The response from some commentators in the media seemed to indicate that Pakistan is controlled by extremists like al-Qaeda.
This could not be further from the truth.
Pakistan is a nation at war with itself, torn apart by sectarian violence. Nine people were killed in Karachi over the weekend, with a note accompanying the bodies reading “Stop visiting shrines – from the Pakistani Taliban.” Terrorists can strike at any time, without warning or mercy.
One such attack was thwarted by a brave 15-year-old boy in the Hangu area of Pakistan named Aitazaz Hassan Bangash, who gave his life to protect those of his classmates. According to The Independent, Aitazaz and his cousin were heading to their school, which possibly had up to 2000 other students inside, when they spotted a man wearing a suicide vest.
The other students fled, pleading with Aitazaz to come with them, but he chose to face the bomber. His cousin said Aitazaz said, “I’m going to stop him. He is going to school to kill my friends.” According to CNN, he threw a stone at the bomber and chased him, eventually catching up. The bomber, panicked, detonated his vest, and killed Aitazaz along with himself.
Other residents of Ibrahimzai, praised his actions calling him a hero and a true martyr for his nation. His father says the boy had hopes of becoming a doctor one day. People are calling for Aitazaz to receive the military’s highest honor—the Nisha-i-Haider, similar to U.S. Medal of Honor in stature—even though he was too young to have enlisted.