The One Quote That Proves Malala Should Have Won the Nobel Peace Prize
Malala Yousafzai, a young Pakistani girl who survived a gunshot to the head by the Taliban, was heavily discussed as a someone who might win the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.
Though she missed out on that award on Friday, it's clear that one of the world's leading peace advocates is now a 16-year-old girl from rural Pakistan.
Malala has wowed the world with her bravery and perseverance, her Gandhi-esque principles, and heroic story.
A year ago this month, Malala was gunned-down by the Pakistani Taliban after pushing for education and women's rights in her country. After a miraculous recovery which included cranial reconstructive surgery, Malala became an international sensation, splashing the front pages of countless news outlets across the world. The young woman then deftly began using her new-found fame to globally promote education and feminism.
World leaders and entertainers rallied to support Malala and her efforts to fight for Muslim women's right to an education. Her dream was to establish the Malala Education Foundation, which would help poor girls go to school, and she was well on her way to realizing her dream when the Taliban carried out their attempt on her life. Desmond Tutu nominated her for the International Children's Peace Prize, and she was awarded Pakistan's first National Youth Peace Prize.
In only a year, Malala has published her memoir I am Malala, and won The Sakharov Prize for free speech awarded by the European Parliament — considered Europe's top human rights award.
In early September, Malala addressed the United Nations General Assembly. Her speech was was filled with a tone of determination.
"Dear sisters and brothers," she said, "we realize the importance of light when we see darkness. We realize the importance of our voice when we are silenced. In the same way when we were in Swat, we realized the importance of pens and books when we saw the guns.
"The extremists were and they are afraid of books and pens," she said.
"The power of education frightens them. They are afraid of women. The power of the voice of women frightens them."
Malala was nominated for a Nobel Prize, among the world's most elite achievements.
In the lead-up to the Friday 2013 Nobel Peace Prize announcement, Malala made the rounds in American media.
In an interview with The Daily Show, she explained that "Education is the power for women."
When asked about the moment when she realized that the Taliban was making her a target, she explained that her initial reaction was anger. However, it didn't take long for her to understand that you can't fight evil with more evil; you need to be smarter than that.
Alas, the 16-year-old missed winning the Nobel Prize, which went instead to chemical weapons watchdog Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, who are currently tasked with destroying Syria's chemical weapons stockpile.
Still, Malala was as gracious as ever:
Malala remains undeterred. This is the beginning of a long and even more productive life in which this extraordinary teenager will continue championing education and women's rights around the world.
Expect her to be in future discussions regarding the Nobel Prize.