Auron ka hai Payaam aur, mera Payaam aur hai, / Ishq key dardmand ka tarz-e-kalaam aur hai! (Iqbal)
If you need to understand the nature of today’s world, and the role of Muslim Oil in the shaping and making of that world, all you need to do is to sit, stand or lie down – all by yourself – and think.
And imagine. Imagine a world without oil – Muslim Oil.
Therefore, it is perhaps not an exaggeration to say that the story of the 20th Century is pretty much the story of oil – Muslim Oil. Bottom line: Muslim Oil is the lifeblood of modern civilization. You pull it out and civilization, as we know it, will come to a screeching halt.
EXAMINE THY ROLE
So, what should Muslims do? Maybe they should think a little bit about any role they may have played in the use – or abuse – of their oil to build this world. Or to bring about it downfall and hasten its destruction.
And what should non-Muslims do? Maybe non-Muslims too should think a little bit about what role they may have played in the building or destruction of our world.
And, additionally, what non-Muslims may want to think about also is this: What would have happened to the world – their world – if they did not have oil – Muslim Oil – at their disposal throughout the last century.
And at the present time – and almost indefinitely going forward into the 21st Century.
Or, for that matter, even from earlier times, dating back to the 19th Century?
For example, what would our world have been like without all that Muslim Oil from the Arabian Peninsula; from Iraq and Iran; from the North African lands of Libya and Algeria; and from the Central Asian locations of Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan?
Or, for that matter, what would the world have looked like without all that Muslim Oil gushing out of the oil wells of Indonesia or Brunei or some other Muslim land somewhere else on this planet?
What most people don’t know is that from the middle to the end of the 19th Century, the oil-bearing areas of Central Asia – Muslim Oil Wells from Baku and Azerbaijan region – were producing half of the world’s oil supplies.
Imagine that: one half of the world’s oil supplies in the latter half of the 19th Century coming from Muslim lands! You then draw your own conclusions about all the political and economic implications of that fact for the world – the non-Muslim world in particular.
MUSLIM OIL PRODUCERS
But before we go any further, let me provide a bird’s eye view of some Muslim Oil producers around the world:
Let us start, in alphabetical order, with Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Brunei, Cameron, Chad and Cote d’Ivoire.
And then let us go to Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kuwait and Libya.
And then let us cross over to Malaysia, Mauritania, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria and Tunisia.
And let us then conclude with Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Republic, Uzbekistan and Yemen.
What do you think?
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?
Now, that is a very impressive list, is it not? Twenty-eight countries altogether: some small, some big; some in Asia, some in Africa. At the same time, don’t forget the respective roles of some of the individual players in the scheme of things in terms of their total production.
For example, Saudi Arabia alone produces close to 10 million barrels of Muslim Oil a day. And it has been doing so for the longest time. Now, that is 30 million barrels every three days – or 300 million barrels every 10 days.
If you round that up for convenience of counting, you get the astronomical figure of one billion (1,000,000,000) barrels of Muslim Oil being pumped out a month by one Muslim land alone.
One month: one billion barrels of Muslim Oil. That is Saudi Arabia all by itself.
Supposing you sold that oil for one US$ dollar a barrel, which, by the way, is how much oil used to sell for, let us say between 1950 and 1970: it sold for about US$2 a barrel I guess. You get US$1,000,000,000 (one billion dollars). That is more or less how much, we are told, America spends on its military efforts in Afghanistan. Or was it Iraq?
But let us say oil sells for $100 and not for $1. That way, one month – or let us say one year – of Muslim Oil from Saudi Arabia alone can finance all the wars that America has fought or will ever fight throughout its history.
Or, alternatively, that oil can feed, clothe and heal the world for the next 100 years.
Iraq, we are told, may hit that gargantuan target production in a not-too-distant future.
Even though Iran used to produce as much as six or seven million barrels of oil a day during the regime of the deposed Shah, the fiercely nationalistic and conservative present Iranian government may not go much beyond what it is pumping right now.
SHOW MUSLIMS A LITTLE RESPECT
So, what should we do now, given all the facts that I have cited above? Here is what I would say may lead to a better outcome for all and create a more peaceful and stable world.
Maybe the non-Muslim citizens of the world should show their Muslim counterparts a little respect. They should, maybe, genuflect a little; touch their cap a little; or just plain nod a little in the direction of Muslims for having given, and continuing to give, them and the world oil – Muslim Oil – so generously and in such abundant quantities.
Not only that, there needs to be some kind of a recognition of the fact that Muslim Oil came to the non-Muslim world at almost throw-away prices for the longest time – from the middle of the 19th century to latter part of the 20th century.
Or, maybe, all that the non-Muslims need to do is flash Muslims a nice, warm smile and say to the Muslims a fairly clear and audible “Thank You Muslims!” for their oil – Muslim Oil.
Thank you, Muslims, for decades upon decades upon decades and for countless billions upon billions upon billions of barrels of your oil – Muslim Oil!
What a beautiful place this world would be if non-Muslims would do that to Muslims.
ACCOUNTABILITY FOR OIL
But there is something more serious involved here beyond the question of what Muslims do or how non-Muslims treat Muslims. And that is the fate of the world itself. Call it human destiny if you will.
What both Muslims and non-Muslims have to do is to take serious stalk of the situation and ask themselves: What have we done and what are we continuing to do to our world – and where is all this going to end?
What will happen to us – both Muslims and non-Muslims – and what will happen to our world if things continue the way they are?
That means human beings – both Muslims and non-Muslims – need to take full responsibility for the gift of oil – Muslim Oil – that God Almighty bestowed upon them. And the incalculable wealth generated by that oil – by Muslim Oil – up- and downstream.
They need to be accountable for it: how they produced it; how they marketed it; how they used it; and how they spent the wealth that this Muslim Oil poured in their coffers and in their laps by barrels upon billions of barrels.
MAYBE THIS IS WHAT WE ALL NEED TO DO
And maybe – just maybe – both Muslims and non-Muslims, instead of hating and hurting each other using one pretext or another, should sit down, either together or by themselves and thank God Almighty for the blessing of oil – Muslim Oil.
That alone should hammer some sense, shame, honesty and humility in our heads – and in our hearts and attitudes, and in our treatment of each other and of God’s world.
They should – both Muslims and non-Muslims should – then ask themselves how they could have used oil – Muslim Oil – and the incalculable wealth generated by that oil, to better worship God in heaven and to better serve and uplift humanity right here on earth.
And what they need to do from now on to make this world a better place for all – for Muslims as well as for non-Muslims – using Muslim Oil in better, more responsible and more God-fearing ways than we have done in the past.
For, in the ultimate analysis as they say, the oil, Muslim Oil, as well as oil from non-Muslim lands, belongs to God Almighty – and we shall answer to God for every drop of it.
Let us not forget that both Muslims and non-Muslims will – maybe right here in this world and most decidedly in the next world after their death – be asked by God Almighty: What they both – Muslims and non-Muslims that is – did with the oil that God gave them and with the enormous and boundless wealth that oil produced and placed at their disposal.
Looking at the way things are today, for both Muslims and non-Muslims, who is to say that day of reckoning is not already upon us? And that the divine finger is not nudging and prodding us ever so lovingly but firmly every day to take stock of ourselves and do a course correction of our values, priorities, behavior and policies, while there may still be time left on the divine chronometer of Kun Fa-yakoon, either to our own death and annihilation or to the end of the world and the destruction of our civilization?
[Write to the author at Drsyedpasha@aol.com. Also visit www.IslamicSolutions.Com and Listen to Pasha Hour International.]