Until now. In recent years, the windfall revenues flowing to the oil-exporting nations of the Persian Gulf have translated into an opportunity for the Islamists who dominate their societies to enlist the West’s leading financial institutions as partners in promoting Shariah finance. In overseas capital markets and increasingly on Wall Street, “Shariah advisors” are being hired at great cost to bless investment instruments as compliant with this religious code.
As a result, three ominous things are occurring:
First, Shariah finance creates a mechanism for systematically legitimating the underlying, repressive theo-political regimen – and, thereby, advancing its adherents’ bid to govern all Muslims and, in due course, the entire world.
Presumably, Western bankers and investment houses would be horrified to know they are helping promote such arrangements. One would think their governments would be, too. Yet, the former are so avidly pursuing Mideast wealth that few seem prepared to engage in even the most superficial due diligence about the implications of Shariah finance. And British prime minister Gordon Brown, for example, has declared he intends to make London the Islamic finance capital of the world. His government has said it intends to issue its own sukuk (or “Shariah-compliant” bonds) sometime next year.
The trouble is that, having embraced one aspect of Shariah, it will be vastly more difficult, if not as a practical matter impossible, to deny Islamist activists their demands to accommodate other aspects such as: footbaths in public institutions, prayer rooms and time off for prayers in both public and private sector establishments, latitude for cab drivers and cashiers to decline to do business with certain customers or handle certain products, an Islamist public school in Brooklyn, etc. Like Shariah finance, each of these is but a beachhead in the Islamofascists’ patient, determined and ultimately seditious campaign to subvert and supplant Western free societies.
Elsewhere in some of those societies, such inroads have been expanded to include: demands for Shariah-compliant schools as in the UK; a push in Canada for separate shariah courts for all matters within the Muslim community; Shariah tolerance for honor killings of women attempted in Germany; destruction of non Shariah-compliant businesses in dedicated “Muslim enclaves” in France; and in various countries, Shariah-approved assassinations of critics of Islam and anyone leaving Islam worldwide.
Second, the Shariah advisors hired by Western capitalists to determine whether investments are “halal” (the Muslim equivalent of kosher) are generally among the foremost adherents to the Islamist creed and associated with organizations that promote it. As one of them put it, Shariah investing is simply “financial jihad” against the unbelievers.
Third, under the direction of these Shariah advisors, at least 2.5% of the proceeds of the investments they control are donated to Zakat funds. Some of these “charities” have been known to contribute to organizations like Hamas, Hezbollah, the families of suicide bombers in Palestinian communities and Islamist madrassas in places like Pakistan. As investment advisors start promoting Shariah finance vehicles and Islamic indexes like Standard & Poors and Dow Jones, non-Muslim Americans will find themselves tithing to these dubious causes, as well.
Before the Trojan horse of Shariah finance is fully wheeled inside the gates of the American capital markets, federal regulators, corporate boards of directors and U.S. shareholders need to understand whether such investing conforms with the good governance and accountability required under Sarbanes-Oxley, the transparency depositors are entitled to under our banking laws and legislation barring material support to terrorism. To do otherwise is to invite the introduction of the instrument of our undoing into our capitalist system and the freedom-loving society it underpins.
Frank Gaffney Jr. is the founder and president of the Center for Security Policy and author of War Footing: 10 Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World .
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