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U.S. Government Embraces Islamic Banking

No short-term gain is worth the long-term danger presented by these murky, Islamist-backed financial mechanisms.

by
Supna Zaidi

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November 24, 2008 - 12:00 am
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On November 6, 2008, the U.S. Treasury Department hosted a seminar on Islamic banking to train government employees on Sharia-compliant finance (SCF). According to a press release, it was “designed to help inform the policy community about Islamic financial services, which are an increasingly important part of the global financial industry.”

It is interesting to note that while many in the West deride parallel societies, the lack of integration, and overall “foreign-ness” of its Muslim populations, they have no problem embracing Islamic banking. Maybe because this is the one area of religious “encroachment” that allows the West to make money, and lots of it.

The U.S. is behind European nations like the UK and France, which are actively promoting Islamic banking.

The UK already offers:

  1. Sharia-compliant car insurance;
  2. Sharia-compliant credit cards;
  3. Sharia-compliant mortgages.

Banking oversight in the UK is handled by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), a non-governmental body whose members are appointed by the Treasury. The FSA does not regulate the Sharia compliance of Islamic financial products, deferring instead to the Sharia supervisory board (SSB) of the financial institutions it has approved. Such religious deference, especially when the U.S. is still engaged in a “war against terror,” is a serious concern to critics of SCF.

One critic, the Coalition to Stop Sharia, hosted a press conference on the same day to reiterate its concerns, which were previously presented to various financial heads, but were ignored. The Coalition joins various organizations that do not want SCF practiced in the United States because of its potential connections to Islamism, the enemy in our “war on terror,” and the liability that would attach to practitioners of SCF who do not understand the potential seditious nature of their involvement.

Speakers included: Robert Spencer, author of Stealth Jihad; Frank Gaffney, Center for Security Policy; Dan Pollak for Morton Klein, Zionist Organization of America; Andrea Lafferty, Traditional Values Coalition; among others.

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