A Sharia Financier in the TN Governor’s Office

FrontPage Magazine 4 December 2012
By Arnold Ahlert

In Tennessee last May, Republican Gov. Bill Haslam appointed Samar Ali as international director of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD). Attempts to connect her to stealth jihad have been ridiculed. Yet when one connects the dots between Ali and several organizations and individuals, a number of troubling relationships arise, especially regarding the phenomenon known as Sharia-compliant finance (SCF).

SCF is best explained by Deroy Murdock in a 2008 column: "Turn your clock back 70 years. Imagine that Wall Street banks and brokerages sold Nuremberg-compliant bonds and stock funds in 1938,” he writes. "American Nazi sympathizers bought financial instruments certified by Berlin-based advisors as free of ‘Jewish profits’ from, say, Salomon Brothers and Bloomingdale’s.”

That’s the first half the equation. Then comes the far more important second half. "In turn, a percentage of such funds’ gains underwrote pro-Nazi charities, like the German-American Bund, and similar organizations in the Fatherland, like the Hitler Youth.” In short, Murdock is using an apt analogy to illuminate the true nature of SCF: it is a money-laundering operation used to underwrite international terrorism.

Samar Ali was appointed as a member of the 2010-2011 class of White House Fellows. Her bio noted that she was an associate with the firm Hogan Lovells US LLP, responsible for counseling clients on mergers and acquisitions, cross-border transactions and Sharia-compliant financial transactions. In fact, the Hogan law firm specializes in SCF, calling it "one of the fastest growing financial sectors” in the world, with projections reaching more than $2.8 trillion by 2015. "Robust demand has led to new challenges for the Islamic finance industry…Indeed, many eminent Sharia scholars commonly recommend us to financial institutions that approach them for advice,” the firm reveals.

The White House press release also noted that Ali is "a founding member of the first U.S. Delegation to the World Islamic Economic Forum” (WIEF). The Shariah Finance Watch blog noted, "[I]t was at the World Islamic Economic Forum where key leaders declared Shariah finance to be ‘dawa’ (missionary) activity to promote Islam and Shariah.” (continue reading...)