‘Good chance lamb you buy at Whole Foods is halal, even though it’s not branded’

As so-called sharia finance grows in the West, so too do beheadings, honor killings and dhimmitude. And more powerful, better-funded jihad groups. There is a direct correlation.

“There’s a good chance that piece of lamb you are buying at Whole Foods is halal, even though it’s not branded as halal,”

via Shariah financing growing popular in the West. h/t Dee

CHICAGO — Ahmed Irfan Khan was poised to transform his family’s small but successful slaughterhouse into a specialty-meat selling juggernaut.

Just one thing stood in his way: His faith.

Khan’s thriving business in Chicago’s old stockyards — which sells halal meat — protein slaughtered in a way prescribed by Islamic law — might have made him attractive to Main Street investors. But his strict adherence to his Muslim faith made going down that path complicated.

From Khan’s website:

located minutes from downtown Chicago (Behind white Sox US Cellular field)… Animals are Hand slaughtered by Muslims

Back to the story:

Under Islamic law, collecting or paying interest is prohibited, making it difficult for Khan to borrow the roughly $2 million needed to expand his company, Barkaat Foods.

But Khan was ultimately able to get the capital for his business — and stay true to his faith — with the help of a traditional bank and a boutique venture capital firm willing to hammer out arrangement that Khan said was “Shariah compliant.”

In the Barkaat deal, the Chicago-based venture capital firm Prairie Street Capital borrowed from Ohio’s FirstMerit bank on standard terms. Prairie Street then entered into what is known in Arabic as a murabaha, a deal that is effectively structured as a lease-to-own agreement. The firm rents back equipment and the building to Barkaat at a marked up rate.

A Chicago investment bank, Sikich, assisted Barkaat in brokering the deal.

Michael Barry, president of Prairie Street Capital, said his firm was enticed by Barkaat, even as the Midwest has seen several mainstream meat producers go out of business in recent years. With the U.S. Muslim population projected to grow by 35% in the next 20 years, Barkaat was uniquely positioned, Barry said.

“We saw a business that we felt good about owning, we felt good about being part of,” Barry said. “It’s a business we can add value to and we could make money with. It’s what drove us to the decision.”

Khan, whose first career was in IT, knows first-hand the demand for his product. When his family moved to Chicago from Bombay in the mid-1980s, they struggled to find halal meat.

For years, he looked for slaughterhouses, like the one he eventually bought in 2009, that would let him come in and slaughter his own lamb or goat, so that he could be assured his family was eating authentic halal meat.

Already, Khan is selling his meat directly to thousands of Muslim customers throughout the country, who buy his lamb, goat and veal, and have it shipped to them. (With the $2 million cash infusion, he plans to buy new equipment and retrofit parts of his slaughterhouse, so that he can begin slaughtering cattle as well.)

While most of his customers shop online, many come to check out his facility in person. Earlier this month, hundreds of Muslim families came to his slaughterhouse to kill lambs themselves to mark the holy day of Eid al-Adha.

Non-Muslims are also his customers, with much of his product being sold to a Wisconsin meat company that sells high-end organic meats to grocers.

“There’s a good chance that piece of lamb you are buying at Whole Foods is halal, even though it’s not branded as halal,” Khan said.

Some critics, including the conservative Center for Security Policy, warn that Americans should be wary of Shariah-compliant financing. They charge that certain aspects of Shariah are draconian, including requirements that women seek permission from their husbands before doing something as mundane as getting a driver license and calls for capital punishment for those who slander Islam.

“Islamists are attempting to impose Shariah Compliant Finance (SCF) on Western institutions to use our own financial strengths against us,” the group writes on its blog dedicated to the issue, Shariah Finance Watch. “The most serious problem with SCF is that it legitimates and institutionalizes Shariah law… a theo-political, legal doctrine violently opposed to Western values.”

Chris Geier, partner-in-charge at Sikich, the investment bank that helped broker the Barkaat deal, said such criticism is unfair.

“This is a company in the U.S., legally domiciled, approved by the USDA to do business the way they are doing it,” Geier said of Barkaat. “We try to help companies and support their business plan and therefore support this economy. It is done without a belief about what they do religiously.”

Which economy? The sharia economy? The economy of jihad? Geier does not care if his clients use the money to fund jihad. It’s all about the money.

Meanwhile, Khan is elated that sharia is creeping along in the U.S.

Khan said he’s unfazed by the criticism, and instead said his deal shows that American financial institutions are beginning to see Islam in granularity that they hadn’t before.

“It’s progress when you can find a way to do business and stay true to your beliefs,” he said.

 


From a 2010 post:

Barkaat’s biggest single customer is Strauss Brands, a Franklin, Wisconsin based purveyor of lamb and veal which has made a name of itself producing free raised animals, which graze in pastures with their mothers, rather than being confined to crates, or held on tethers.“Our secret is authenticity,” Strauss advertises.

After each slaughter, most of the meat is shipped to Strauss’ Wisconsin facility for further processing, and sold under the Strauss label. In Chicago, you can buy Strauss brands, which may have been slaughtered at Barkaat, through Whole Foods, and through Caputo’s Fresh Markets. It’s also available through Costco online.

DC: American University now teaching sharia finance course

200px-American_University_Seal

via American University Offers Islamic Finance Course.

Islamic Finance is growing at a rate of 50 percent higher than conventional finance with a $2 trillion industry that is has finance houses across the world capitulating and hankering after a piece of the halal pie. To capitalize on the trend and educate local students, an undergraduate level course on Islamic finance started this week at the American University in Washington D.C. taught by an expert in the field, Professor Ghiyath Nakshbendi.

The course provides students with an overview of the principles of Islamic finance and its evolution over the centuries with emphasis on the last four decades. The different products are presented and discussed with reference to the modern conventional products in the marketplace. Coverage of the current Islamic capital markets and the institutions that are the major players in that market is undertaken. Issues related to insurance, accounting and auditing, and ethical concepts are covered. The course is only open to juniors or seniors.

“Being the first ever course offered in Islamic finance around the DC area (as far as I know), we are trying to get more students registered for the course, so that we could offer it regularly in the coming semesters,” comments Amin Mohseni, Assistant Professor of Economics at the American University. The course currently has 17 students and is held on Wednesdays at 2:35-5:15.

According to Wikipedia:

American University (AU or American) is a private, coeducational, liberal arts curriculum, doctoral,[5] and research-based university in Washington, D.C., United States, affiliated with the United Methodist Church,[5] although the university’s curriculum is secular.

Or not so secular.

Oregon: Terror-funding Islamic charity pleads guilty to tax fraud

Barack Hussein Obama and Eric Holder exonerate a Muslim convicted of funding al Qaeda. via Oregon Islamic charity pleads guilty to tax fraud | KOIN.com. h/t Money Jihad.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon-based Islamic charity has pleaded guilty to tax fraud in a plea agreement that includes dropping criminal charges against the foundation’s former head, U.S. Attorney for Oregon Amanda Marshall announced Tuesday.

Pete Seda is the former head of the U.S. branch of Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation based in Ashland. A federal appeals court last summer overturned his 2010 conviction on charges he smuggled money out of the country to help Chechen rebels fight Russian forces.

On Tuesday, the charity pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Eugene to one count of filing a false tax return with the Internal Revenue Service. The group was placed on probation for three years, and it agreed during that time not to resume operating as a tax-exempt charity in the U.S., prosecutors said.

The charity failed to report to the Internal Revenue Service that a $150,000 donation in 2000 went overseas to Saudi Arabia and was meant to be sent to Chechnya, prosecutors said. The charity falsely reported on its tax return that the money was used partly to buy a building in the U.S.

The foundation was disbanded after the U.S. government declared it was a terrorist organization and froze its assets.

The charity doesn’t even exist anymore so how can it be placed on three years probation? Or does it exist and has it been operating funding jihad as a designated terrorist org all along? In fact, the terrorist-loving, patriot-hating IRS is only banning the terror-funding Muslim charity from operating as a tax exempt org. Apparently it can operate otherwise.

A message left Tuesday evening with a lawyer representing the charity was not immediately returned.

Also known as Pirouz Sedaghaty, Seda worked for many years as a tree surgeon in Ashland, where he operated the Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation and was an outspoken proponent of the peaceful aspects of Islam.

A jury convicted the Iranian-born U.S. citizen in 2010 of using the foundation to help smuggle $150,000 to Saudi Arabia in 2000 and signing a fraudulent tax return to cover it up. During the trial, Seda blamed the tax return on his accountant and maintained the money was for humanitarian aid.

At Seda’s 2011 sentencing, a federal judge said there was no proof directly linking him to terrorism, but the judge said he had no doubt the money went to Islamic fighters in Chechnya, as the prosecution maintained.

In August 2013, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco overturned the conviction, saying the government turned what was really a tax fraud case into a terrorism case. The court said the defense was given incomplete versions of classified documents.

Eric Holder, the 9th Pillar Sharia Court, and the IRS – infidels don’t have a chance against them.

Landmark Terror Financing Trial Begins in New York

via The Tower.

The terror financing trial of the Arab Bank, based in Amman, Jordan, began yesterday in Federal District Court in Brooklyn.

The New York Daily News reports:

The plaintiffs suing Arab Bank for facilitating money transfers to charities controlled by Hamas and suicide bombers are 300 victims and family members of 24 terrorist attacks in Israel between March 2001 and September 2004.

“We intend to prove the bank knowingly provided financial services to senior Hamas leaders and operatives and to the families of suicide bombers,” said Gary Osen, attorney for the plaintiffs.

According to the report in The New York Times the case will revolve around how much officials of the bank knew that they were knowingly providing services to Hamas, a designated terror organization. For example Hamas spokesman Osama Hamdan maintained an account at the bank and ” at least three wire transfers” made to his account “were earmarked for Hamas” and were approved by officials at the bank.

The plaintiffs allege that charities like the Saudi Committee sent payments to terrorists and their families that the bank processed, pointing to a Saudi Committee spreadsheet that listed “the names of martyrs and their beneficiaries, as well as the martyrs’ causes of death,” according to an order from Judge Gershon.

The plaintiffs also have as evidence ads like one that ran in an Arab-language newspaper in 2002: “The relatives of the martyrs, whose names hereby follow, are requested to head for the Arab Bank branches in their places of residence in order to receive the tenth payment from the honorable Saudi Committee — a sum of 5,316.06 USD for each family.”

Payments of $5316.06 were typically made to families of “martyrs.”

In pre-trial proceedings the Arab Bank refused to turn over a number of documents demanded by the court leading Judge Nina Gershon to rule that she would instruct the jury that due to the refusal the jury “’may, but is not required to, infer’ that the bank provided financial services to designated terrorist organizations and individuals.”

Last month The New York Times reported on the dubious tricks major banks have used to continue doing business with Iran in violation of existing sanctions.

In his profile of Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, The Woman Who Makes the Jihadis Squirm that appeared in the February 2014 issue of The Tower Magazine, editor David Hazony explained the difficulty of suing banks for terror ties, “Yet the biggest challenge has clearly been fighting against corporations and banks. Suddenly you find yourself facing massive teams of well-heeled lawyers who have long ago mastered the tactics of high-stakes litigation on behalf of wealthy clients who exist only to preserve and build their wealth.”

Hamas Supporters Raise Money at Six Flags Magic Mountain, Los Angeles

Caliph-ornia. via The Jawa Report

Clarion Project:

In August 2006, Jamaat-e-Islami said it dispatched a delegation from its Al-Khidmat Foundation to deliver a “special message” as well as about $100,000 to a senior Hamas leader. At that time, the Al-Khidmat Foundation’s top two donors were ICNA Relief USA and ICNA Relief Canada. A third ICNA charity, Helping Hand, was also listed as a donor.[12] Notably, the website of ICNA’s Southeast Zone linked to the websites of Hamas, Hezbollah and other terrorist groups until November 2002, over a year after the 9/11 attacks. The website also promoted a Hamas front, the Islamic Society in Gaza, as a charity.[13]A 1989, a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Financial Committee document instructs participants to contact “all the Islamic centers and groups in the field,” naming ICNA as one of them.

 


The Muslim takeover Day was also held in Boston yesterday and Albany today. San Fran in late August; Chicago, Buffalo and DC are planned in September; Dallas in October and New Jersey right around 9/11.


Meanwhile, at the amusement park at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the black flag of jihad may be flying over the White House now: Israel Supporters Evacuated From Front of White House Under Police Protection

jihad flag WH

Georgia: Senate Candidate on Defense Over Links to ‘Islamic Relief’

via GA Senate Candidate on Defense Over Links to ‘Islamic Relief’

Michelle Nunn, the Democratic Party candidate for the Senate in Georgia, is on the defensive over revelations from a leaked campaign strategy memo that her charity assisted Islamic Relief USA (IRUSA). The Israeli government reportedly banned IRUSA’s parent group, Islamic Relief Worldwide, for financing Hamas but the organization says its operations have not been shut down.

 

Nunn’s strategy memo was published by National Review Online, which referenced the Clarion Project’s research on IRUSA in its coverage of the document.

 The memo identifies potential vulnerabilities in Nunn’s campaign, such as “service award to inmates, terrorists” by the Points of Light charity when she was its CEO. The charity was originally founded by former President George H.W. Bush in 1987.

The revelation that Nunn’s former charity assisted the extremist IRUSA organization is another wakeup call that politicians from both sides of the isle are not fulfilling their duty to carefully vet the organizations that they associate with and support.

Read it all at Clarion Project.

Canada adds Muslim charity to list of banned terrorist orgs

via Canada Raids, Designates Hamas-Tied Charity :: The Investigative Project on Terrorism.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) has conducted searches in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec as part of an investigation into a Muslim charity organization. Canadian federal auditors accuse the International Relief Fund for the Afflicted and Needy (IRFAN-Canada) of sending nearly $15 million to Hamas, a recognized terrorist organization. On Tuesday, the Canadian government officially added the organization to its list of banned terrorist organizations.

“As a consequence, any property or asset belonging to IRFAN is now frozen,” said a letter from the RCMP said.

IRFAN-Canada lost its charity status in 2011 following a Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) audit that exposed the organization as an “integral part” in Hamas’ international fundraising infrastructure. The donations in question were sent between 2005 and 2009.

The CRA also found videos at the organization’s Mississauga office that “demonize Israel, characterize the Arab-Israeli conflict as a religious war, appeal for all Arab and Muslim nations to join in the struggle against Israel and glorify martyrdom.”

Tuesday’s raids netted “an extensive amount of documentary evidence along with stored media, money and other records were seized,” according to the RCMP statement issued shortly after the government announced the organization’s ban.

“IRFAN-Canada has knowingly financed Hamas … for many years,” Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney said Tuesday. “The well intentioned and charitable Canadians who sought to support humanitarian relief through this organization deserve better.”

No one for IRFAN-Canada was available to comment, but a lawyer speaking on the organization’s behalf condemned the listing as an attack on humanitarian assistance for Palestinians.

Also read Telling the Truth about Terrorism and Islamic Charities.

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