Osama Bin Laden and Muhammad Yunus are both Muslim, but who represents the correct Islam? Who is an asset to Islam and who is its destroyer? Who is a disgrace to the Muslims and who is the symbol of the religion? Who is most notorious member and who is the great benefactor to Islam once famous as a promoter of education, knowledge and peace. What made Dr. Alvin Harp raise the question, “When do the lives of 15 million people have a greater value than those of 1.3 billion?”
There is a difference between a creator and a destroyer, a humanitarian and a killer, a hijacker and a benefactor, a terrorist and—a man of peace. There is a distinction between those who try to empower women’s rights and those who ban women’s liberties. There is a difference between helping and loving one’s enemy and hating and killing the enemy. I have been thinking about these dissimilarities after Dr. Harp raised the question, “When do the lives of 15 million people have a greater value than those of 13 billion?” Well, my answer is that Islam is not only the religion of the evil Osama Bin Laden; it is also a religion of many saints such as Muhammad Yunus. So—why has Dr. Harp asked me such a question? Why does he magnify the evil Bin Laden and ignore the saint Muhammad Yunus? Why?
The evil in the Bin Laden vision is to make everyone jihadists; then they will hijack planes to hit American buildings—his vision is to create a world where women don’t go to school; they just stay at home making and raising children—his vision is to create a world without non-Muslims—he is still hiding from one cave to another, planning how to blow up, tear down and kill—he has introduced the idea of suicide bombers, has founded a terrorist organization—and he does not differentiate between killing a child, a widow, or an elderly person. This is the vision of Evil Bin Laden—that’s how he works and still—millions of Muslims support him! Why millions of Muslims support him?
On the other hand, Yunus believes that human beings are more than money-making machines. He feels strongly that we all have many other dreams and passions, such as sacredness, a societal sense of humor, and philanthropic compassion. This is an insight into Yunus’s world where the imaginative vision of the entrepreneur is applied to make a poverty free world. This book has a message for 1.3 billions Muslims to follow the path of Yunus and to give up—corruption, and terrorism.
Muhammad Yunus is not merely a great man—he is a saint. There have been hundreds of presidents and there will be hundreds more—but there is only one Yunus—one of the greatest persons of the world, and Grameen, which he founded in 1983, is not merely an organization—it is a movement—it is a religion which is designed to reduce poverty, improve education, house the homeless, heal the sick—such as Nion who was diagnosed with kidney disease—and back to life from his death bed with the help of Muhammad Yunus.
This is the time to persuade 1.3 billions Muslims to follow the path of—Muhammad Yunus—rather than the path of Evil Osama Bin Laden. If we do not do that then —man like Dr. Harp will continue claim that the lives of 15 million people (Jews) have a greater value than those of 1.3 billion (Muslims)?”
Rashidul Bari is the Secretary of Bangladeshi-Americans for Obama. His website is: www.rashidulbari.info