Salauddin Quader Chowdhury joins the brigade of Israel bashing 


What is the favorite pastime of the world's majority of the Muslims, who call themselves as part of "Ummah"? The answer is plain and simple. Jew bashing and Israel bashing.  

Starting from the cause of the 9/11 tragedy to the recent defeat in OIC's Secretary General position, Israel is the main culprit behind these mishaps. Someone may argue, politically less enlightened people could be the only conspiracy theorists. Many ignorant expatriate Bangladeshi Muslims may logically fit into this pattern. So, when in any social gathering in New York , Falls Church , Los Angeles or Baltimore a group of native born Bangladeshis of Islamic heritage gossip about the genesis of  September 11, 2001 blaming the Jews for the tragedy - that is understandable. The vast majority of them are not sophisticated enough who fail to erase their upbringing of bigotry and hatred against Jews. But what about Mahathir Mohamed of Malayasia? Isnt he an enlightened man? Or is he the ultimate epitome of hate and viciousness? His despicable speech before representatives of Islamic countries at the end of last year drew condemnation from many sensible quarters 

Now, we see a parallel to Mahathir's bigoted rhetorics. Most recently a prominent Islamist leader from Bangladesh , Salauddin Quader Chowdhury lost the nomination for OIC's Secretary General. The Turkish candidate won overwhelmingly. I was reading an interesting news report in today's [ June 18, 2004 ]  Bengali daily Prothom Alo. The title of the report is "Salauddin Quader Chowdhury's comment on Turkey drew condemnation in diplomatic circle". The report says, Salauddin Quader Chowdhury told news agency UNB last Wednesday, "The pro-Israeli lobby in OIC has won. Now, Israeli flag will be hoisted in Ankara ". Mr. Chowdhury, who is a powerful man in Prime Minister Khaleda Zia's inner circle (he is supposedly an advisor to her) may not be aware that Israeli flag is already pretty visibly hoisted in Ankara How can such outrageous comment come out from the mouth of such a high profile politician in Bangladesh is everybody's guess. Sadly, such off-the-cuff remark can only undermine the image of a "image conscious" state like Bangladesh . 


-Jamal Hasan

Washington DC


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