Tags: gaffney | obama | islamic

Expert Warns Obama To Avoid Islamic Finance

Wednesday, 05 Nov 2008 01:44 PM

By Dave Eberhart

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Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy warns that the president-elect should avoid financing his great society with tainted Islamic-correct petro dollars, saying their strings might be attached inextricably to the nation’s worst extremist enemies.

With Barack Obama’s victory Tuesday sucking the oxygen from the air, few are focusing on Thursday, the day the U.S. Treasury Department will embrace the so-called “Shariah-Compliant Finance” or SCF.

If “Shariah” doesn’t ring any bells other than sounding foreign and somewhat ominous, it is simply the “religio-political-legal code authoritative Islam seeks to impose worldwide under a global theocracy,” Gaffney said.

The Treasury Department will host a “seminar for the policy community” entitled “Islamic Finance 101,” and it’s all about getting warm and fuzzy with SCF. Co-sponsoring the event is the Islamic Finance Project at Harvard Law School.

Harvard has benefitted mightily from the infusion of millions of dollars from a Wahhabi Saudi prince and his government, Gaffney said.

Yes, it’s all about money.

U.S. financial institutions, reeling from the credit crunch, are hungrily eyeballing more than $1 trillion in petrodollars, including Shariah-compliant bonds, mutual funds, mortgages, insurance, hedge funds, and real estate investment trusts.

Dow Jones Corp. has even created its own index for Islamic-correct investments: the Dow Jones Islamic Index, according to The Coalition to Stop Shariah.

Enter Uncle Sam, the always cash-strapped giant that must feed at any convenient trough these days, regardless of what strings are attached.

And what a trough it is. The global Shariah market is growing at a 15 percent pace, courtesy of the oil boom and resurgence in Islamic fundamentalism, according to the Center for Security Policy. It’s expected to more than double during the next 10 years.

Attractive chunk of available change and maybe even an imperative, but some watchdogs are ringing alarm bells.

Investors Business Daily recently examined Shariah-compliant finance and its involvement with investments and other transactions that have been structured to conform to the orthodox teachings of Islamic law.

“That means they can’t charge or earn interest, the cornerstone of our credit-driven economy,” the business publication advised. “Nor can they take any stake in ‘haram,’ or forbidden, industries, including meat and beverage producers (if they process any pork or alcohol); entertainment; gaming; and interest-based financing.

“Wall Street is jumping into this hot new market oblivious to the risks not just to the bottom line, but to national security. It knows little about Shariah law and is turning to consultants to create ‘ethical’ products to sell.

“Lost in the hype over these Muslim-friendly funds is that they must ‘purify’ their returns by transferring at least 3 percent into Islamic charities, many of which funnel funds to terrorists.”

Bottom line: Shariah law obligates that a sizable portion of “zakat,” or giving — one of the pillars of Islam — go to support jihad. So many of the purification donations generated from Shariah finance could wind up in the hands of our enemy.

Gaffney sees the latest Federal interest in SCF products as leading to dangerous ends.

“Such submission — the literal meaning of ‘Islam’ — is not likely to remain confined long to the Treasury or its sister agencies,” he said. “Thanks to the extraordinary authority conferred on Treasury since September, backed by the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief, the department is now in a position to impose its embrace of Shariah on the U.S. financial sector.

“The nationalization of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Treasury’s purchase of — at last count — 17 banks and the ability to provide, or withhold, funds from its new slush fund can translate into unprecedented coercive power,” the expert said.

Gaffney has called upon the new president to nix the outgoing administration’s determination to advance the Islamist agenda via such projects as “Islamic Finance 101,” and what flows from them.

He calls the embrace of SCF “the first far-reaching policy decision inherited by the new president-elect.”

Gaffney’s advice: “Pull the plug on Thursday’s indoctrination program and the insidious industry it is meant to foist on the ‘policy community,’ our capital markets, and our country.”

“After all, the object of Shariah is the supplanting of our government and Constitution, through violent means if possible and, until then, through stealthy ones,” he said.

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