Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Islamic World--an abject failure

For more than 40 years, a group of nations calling itself the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) has attempted to further the interests of the Muslim world. How is the OIC doing in their mission? Let's take a quick look at some handy facts and statistics:

OIC members represent 22 per cent of the world population, have 2 per cent of the world`s GDP, 1.3 per cent of the world trade and only 1.5 per cent of the investments. Twenty five per cent of OIC population does not have access to medical facilities or safe drinking water.

Half of the population lives below the poverty line classified as the most poor. No Muslim country is in the top list of the Human Development Index or in any other global economic indicators.

This depressing picture of the Islamic countries is not limited to the economic and social spheres, in the realm of education and technology the facts are equally disappointing.

The OIC member countries possess 70 per cent of the world`s energy resources and 40 per cent of available raw material but their GDP is only 5 per cent of the world GDP. Muslim countries miserably lag behind in education and technology.

They produce only 500 PhDs each year as compared to 3,000 in India and 5,000 in the United Kingdom. None of their educational or research institutions or centres of excellence find place in the top 100 in the world.

Even countries like the various sheikdoms of the Gulf and Brunei, their coffers consistently chalk-full of cash, with money literally flowing out of the ground, have shown that they are consistently unable to fully provide for the welfare of their comparatively tiny populations. Does anyone still honestly think that the OIC can do anything meaningful to provide for the welfare of Muslims?  Another 40 years, or 400 years for that matter, would make no difference.

The only reasonable conclusion is that the self serving utterances of a 7th century warlord are a poor basis for improving the lot of humanity. No OIC summit or proclamation otherwise can obfuscate this truth.

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