GAFFNEY: Treasury submits to Shariah

COMMENTARY:

The U.S. Treasury Department is submitting to Shariah - the seditious religio-political-legal code authoritative Islam seeks to impose worldwide under a global theocracy.

As reported in this space last week, Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Robert Kimmitt set the stage with his recent visit to Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Persian Gulf states. His stated purpose was to promote the recycling of petrodollars in the form of foreign investment here.

Evidently, the price demanded by his hosts is that the U.S. government get with the Islamist financial program. While in Riyadh, Mr. Kimmitt announced: “The U.S. government is currently studying the salient features of Islamic banking to ascertain how far it could be useful in fighting the ongoing world economic crisis.”

“Islamic banking” is a euphemism for a practice better known as “Shariah-Compliant Finance (SFC).” And it turns out that this week the Treasury will be taking officials from various federal agencies literally to school on SFC.

The department is hosting a half-day course entitled “Islamic Finance 101” on Thursday at its headquarters building. Treasury’s self-described “seminar for the policy community” is co-sponsored with the leading academic promoters of Shariah and SCF in the United States: Harvard University Law School’s Project on Islamic Finance. At the very least, the U.S. government evidently hopes to emulate Harvard’s success in securing immense amounts of Wahhabi money in exchange for conforming to the Islamists’ agenda. Like Harvard, Treasury seems utterly disinterested in what Shariah actually is, and portends.

Unfortunately, such submission - the literal meaning of “Islam” - is not likely to remain confined long to the Treasury or its sister agencies. Thanks to the extraordinary authority conferred on Treasury since September, backed by the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), 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.

Concerns in this regard are only heightened by the prominent role Assistant Treasury Secretary Neel Kashkari will be playing in “Islamic Finance 101.” Mr. Kashkari, the official charged with administering the TARP fund, will provide welcoming remarks to participants. Presumably, in the process, he will convey the enthusiasm about Shariah-Compliant Finance that appears to be the current party line at Treasury.

As this enthusiasm for SCF ramps up in Washington officialdom, it is worth recalling a lesson from “across the pond.” Earlier this year, the head of the Church of England, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, provoked a brief but intense firestorm of controversy with his declaration that it was “unavoidable” that Shariah would be practiced in Britain. Largely unremarked was the reason he gave for such an ominous forecast: The U.K. had already accommodated itself to Shariah-Compliant Finance.

This statement provides an important insight for the incumbent U.S. administration and whomever succeeds it: Shariah-Compliant Finance serves as a leading edge of the spear for those seeking to insinuate Shariah into Western societies.

Regrettably, SCF is not the only instrument of the stealth jihad by which Shariah-promoting Islamists are seeking to achieve “parallel societies” here and elsewhere in the West. The British experience is instructive on this score, too. Her Majesty’s government has allowed the establishment of at least five Shariah courts to hear (initially) family law cases. Polygamists in the U.K. can get welfare for each of their wives (as long as all the marriages beyond the first were performed overseas).

Thus far, we in this country may not have reached the point where evidence of this sort of creeping Shariah is so manifest. But Treasury’s accommodation to SCF demonstrates that we are on the same trajectory - the one ordained and demanded by the promoters of Shariah, one to which we serially accommodate ourselves at our extreme peril.

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. Islamists, having secured footholds via their parallel societies, inevitably use those to extend their influence over Muslims who have no more interest in living under authoritative Islam’s Shariah than the rest of us do. Inexorably, it becomes the turn of non-Muslims to accommodate themselves to ever more intrusive demands from the Islamists. It is known as submission, or dhimmitude.

Soon - possibly as early as this Wednesday - the Treasury Department and the other federal agencies will be taking orders from representatives of Barack Obama or John McCain. It may be that the outgoing administration’s determination to advance the Islamist agenda via “Islamic Finance 101,” and what flows from it, may be the first, far-reaching policy decision inherited by the new president-elect. If he does not want to have his transition saddled with an implicit endorsement of submission to Shariah, the winner of the White House sweepstakes would be well-advised to 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.

Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. is president of the Center for Security Policy and a columnist for The Washington Times.

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