ICC Note: Here is a disturbing report regarding how Christians are being duped into funding jihad.
Christian churches and the financing of terrorism-Australian examples
Terror Finance, October 2006
Terror Finance Blog
Muslim charities and others in support of jihadists in Australia have formed an alliance with church groups sympathetic to their cause, which is proving useful in raising funds and giving legitimacy to the jihadist cause. In late 2005 John Henderson, secretary general of the National Council of Churches Australia(NCCA) was asked for comment on the evidence presented him of links between Muslim Aid Australia and jihadists organizations, including Al-Qaeda, given the NCCA and Muslim Aid’s joint fund raising efforts for persons in Iraq .
Henderson replied that the NCCA was proud of all the partnerships and associations it had entered into.
In October this year the Council of Churches in the state of Victoria, Australia, commissioned a study authored by Rev Dr Duncan Reid, whose recommendations for building better ties between Muslims and Christians include ” giving advice to Muslims about how to live as Muslims within this wider Australian context, eg how to bank one’s savings in normal banks, in the face of the Muslim ban on charging or receiving interest.”
Dr Rahim Ghouse, business associate the SDGT Yassin Al-Kadi was amongst those whose input Reid acknowledges in his study. Ghouse heads the Muslim Community Co-Operative Australia, the largest sharia compliant financial institution in Australia .
The Columban Mission Society Australia runs the Centre for Christian-Muslim Relations ,whose website included until recently links to the Al-Haramaein Charitable Foundation of Saudi Arabia, even after the Centre was advised that that the Foundation had been banned in the US for financing terrorism.
The Centre works with a local Muslim organization, the Affinity Inter-cultural Group, to promote better understanding of Islam, despite being advised about Affinity’s support for and links to the Syrian minister Dr Mohamad Al Habash. Al Habash has been denied entry to the US and Australia , and recently called for jihad against Israel .
In 2003, the Centre’s Fr Patrick McInnerney, appeared as an expert witness on Islam for the plaintiff, the Islamic Council of Victoria, in a case against 2 protestant pastors, brought under the state of Victoria’s religious vilification laws.
The case report states: “Father McInerney in his statement is also critical of the treatment(by the pastors) of the Madrassahs in Pakistan . He concedes that they have produced radicals and extremists who became activists in Afghanistan and in Kashmir . He criticizes what he calls the populous rhetoric of millions as inaccurate, as is the implication that such extremism is characteristic of true Muslims, let alone most Muslims throughout the world who would be appalled at the indoctrination of gullible students that sometimes takes place in such Madrassahs.”
The Columban Mission Society is active in Pakistan . It seeks funds from the public for its works. Despite seeking public funds, when asked to reveal all the sources of its sources and applications of funds, the Mission ‘s Fr Gary Walker responded:
“You can demand as many things as you like but we are under no obligation to reveal any information about our funding to you or to anyone else unless legally required to do so by competent authorities.”
It does appear that at least in Australia , anti-establishment, anti-US , pro-socialist or communist leanings are perhaps factors in the support of church members for jihadists.
For example , the Tertiary Chaplains Coordinator for the Archdiocese of Sydney, Fr Peter Maher, told a seminar on racism that the West has spent billions of dollars demonising the whole of the Middle East as the cause of all the West’s troubles, and that as result the Western political economy “which this demonising serves,” has convinced its population that it knows all it needs to know about Islam as a violent religion. Fr Maher has described this “demonising” as a blatant act of inciting prejudice to accomplish economic and political ends. He also said that it is an an indisputable fact that the most marginalised and the most disadvantaged are where they are because they have been dispossessed by the imperialism of the Christian West.
Another example, this from Sr Trish Madigan, a Dominican nun and member of the Columban’s Centre for Christian Muslim Relations:
“..one is reminded of a past age in the city of Cordoba in Andalucia , Spain where under Muslim rule Jews, Christians and Muslims lived together as a shining example of tolerance, justice, compassion and even prosperity until it was brutally brought to an end by short-sighted Christian rulers. ”
Clearly the fund raising activities of Christian bodies need to scrutinised more closely.