Who Controls Shariah-Compliant Finance? The Shariah Scholars, Of Course…
The Financial Times has a rather interesting article online today about the men who control Shariah-Compliant Finance.
It is one of the first and few articles from the financial press to address the issue of the control of the Shariah scholars.
Unfortunately, it also misses one of the key points.
The article focuses primarily on Mufti Mohammed Taqi Usmani as the leading Shariah scholar in the financial world. But the journalist completely fails to go into the background and core beliefs that make Usmani the problem that he truly is.
We have covered these aspects extensively on SFW, but they are worth going into again. Here are some of the highlights of Usmani’s career that the Financial Times decided weren’t important for their readers to know about:
To be sure, Usmani is one of the most prolific Shariah scholars in the world of finance. He receives compensation from dozens of banks and investment firms, including Saudi American Bank, Citi Islamic Investment Bank, and Guidance Financial Group in the USA.
Before cashing in with the private sector, Usmani was a Shariah judge on the Supreme Court of Pakistan for 20 years.
Usmani is also a complete Jihadist.
In September 2001, Usmani was part of a small delegation of clerics known to be sympathetic to the Taliban in Afghanistan and travelled there to ostensibly convince Mullah Omar, the leader of the Taliban, to turn over Osama Bin Laden to the United States. Information leaked later by some of the clerics present at the meeting indicates that the delegation may have, in fact, tried to stiffen the Taliban’s will to resist.
Usmani is a prolific writer in Urdu, Arabic and English, having published dozens of books and countless articles.
Among his books available in English is a vitriolic attack on Christianity called “What is Christianity” and a broadside against the West and modernity called “Islam and Modernism.”
Here is one particularly revealing quote from “Islam and Modernism:”
“Killing is to continue until the unbelievers pay jizyah (subjugation tax) after they are humbled or overpowered.”
Usmani is well-known for his uncompromising views on the mandatory nature of conducting offensive jihad against non-Muslims “in order to establish the supremacy of Islam” worldwide.
Usmani also complained bitterly at the lack of martyrs to combat American forces in Iraq:
“No one is found having any desire of Shahadah (martyrdom). How many mothers are there who want to sacrifice their sons for the cause of Islam? How many sisters are there who want to say goodbye to their brothers departing to wage jihad against non-believers?”
Usmani referred to Americans in Iraq as “stinking atheists” and “the worst ever butchers and vultures of the world” who are “clawing off the flesh of bodies of innocent Iraqi Muslims.”
According to what Usmani has said and written, aggressive jihad against unbelievers is an Islamic obligation and, as such, does not need any justification.
“For a non-Muslim state to have more pomp and glory than a Muslim state itself is an obstacle, therefore to shatter this grandeur is among the greater objectives of jihad.”
For Taqi Usmani, offensive jihad can be postponed for a time only in cases when the Muslims in question are not strong enough to battle or otherwise challenge the infidels. And so, he advises the Muslims to live peacefully in countries like Britain, for instance, but only until they gain enough power to carry out jihad.
Under Pakistani dictator General Zia al-Haq (1977-1988), himself a zealous advocate of Shariah, Usmani played a key role in the introduction of the Shariah-based punishment code known as the Huddud Ordinance, as well as blasphemy laws and other Shariah injunctions, to the huge detriment of Pakistani justice and civil liberties.