Hollywood philanthropist Angelina Jolie said she was compelled to share Malala Yousafzai's story of grit with her children.
So what is special about this 14-year-old Pakistani girl who was shot down by Taliban gunmen?
For us it is difficult to comprehend a world where a girl is shot for her desire to be allowed to go to school. But for folks in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province this has become a way of life.
Yousufzai, a cheerful schoolgirl who had wanted to become a doctor before agreeing to her father's wishes that she strive to be a politician, has become a potent symbol of resistance against the Taliban's efforts to deprive girls of an education.
Malala was shot in her head and neck for advocating education for girls.
Facing widespread condemnation for attacking Malala, a defiant Taliban said that the attack on her was justified as she had spoken out against the group and praised US President Barack Obama.
Taliban described Yousufzai as a "spy of the West".
"For this espionage, infidels gave her awards and rewards. And Islam orders killing of those who are spying for enemies," the group said in a statement.
"She used to propagate against mujahideen (holy warriors) to defame (the) Taliban. The Quran says that people propagating against Islam and Islamic forces would be killed.
"We targeted her because she would speak against the Taliban while sitting with shameless strangers and idealized the biggest enemy of Islam, Barack Obama."
So what did the 14-year-old do to shake the Taliban?
Their story began in 2009, when Fazlullah, known as Radio Mullah for his fiery radio broadcasts, took over Swat Valley, and ordered the closure of girls' schools, including Yousufzai's.
Outraged, the then-11-year-old kept a blog for the BBC under a pen name and later launched a campaign for girls' education. It won her Pakistan's highest civilian honour and death threats from the Taliban.
Yousufzai was not blind to the dangers. In her hometown of Mingora, Fazlullah's Taliban fighters dumped bodies near where her family lived.
"I heard my father talking about another three bodies lying at Green Chowk," she wrote in her diary, referring to a nearby roundabout.
A military offensive pushed Fazlullah out of Swat in 2009, but his men simply melted away across the border to Afghanistan. Earlier this year, they kidnapped and beheaded 17 Pakistani soldiers in one of several cross border raids.
Yousufzai continued speaking out despite the danger. As her fame grew, Fazlullah tried everything he could to silence her. The Taliban published death threats in the newspapers and slipped them under her door. But she ignored them.
The Taliban say that's why they sent assassins, despite a tribal code forbidding the killing of women.
"We had no intentions to kill her but were forced when she would not stop (speaking against us)," said Sirajuddin Ahmad, a spokesman of Swat Taliban now based in Afghanistan's Kunar province.
He said the Taliban held a meeting a few months ago at which they unanimously agreed to kill her. The task was then given to military commanders to carry out.
On Tuesday, the two men stopped the bus she was riding home in. They asked for Yousufzai by name. Although the frightened girls said she wasn't there, the men fired at her and also hit two other girls in the van. One of them remains in critical condition.
Her would-be killers said they had no idea their attack would propel their victim, already a national hero, into a global icon.
Article Credit: http://in.news.yahoo.com/why-malala-yousafzai-s-story-needs-to-be-told.html