January 31, 2008, - 11:55 am

Thanks, Serpenthead: Should an Islamic Sharia Bank Own an American Power Generation Facility?

By Debbie Schlussel
I’ve written extensively about Arcapita, formerly known as First Islamic Investment Bank. The sharia-compliant company is based in Bahrain, but its shareholders are dominated by Saudi Princes and nobles (some of whom are believed to have donated to Palestinian homicide bomber telethons) and a Qatari Prince whose family owns and runs Al-Jazeera. It’s the company that still owns about 60% of Caribou Coffee (don’t shop there).
As I wrote in the New York Post in 2002 (and have written several times since on this site and elsewhere), Arcapita formerly employed the David Duke of the Islamic world, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, spiritual leader of the Islamic Brotherhood, as one of its top execs. He is on the no-fly list and no longer allowed entry into the U.S. He’s called for Muslims to blow up American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan and to create rivers of Jewish blood in Palestine. He was “fired” when my reporting and national TV appearances on this caused Caribou to experience its worst sales quarter ever. But he was replaced by two men who also work for one of Al-Qaeda’s top Saudi financiers. At the same time, the company changed its name from First Islamic Investment Bank to Arcapita shield its Islamic nature.

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Arcapita: Islamic Bank Now Owns Important Texas Power Plant

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Meet Texas Power Plant’s New Owner, Arcapita CEO Atif Abdulmalik

I’ve been watching Arcapita, as it slowly acquires important businesses throughout America. Many of its purchases are disturbing, but perhaps none is more so than its just-announced purchase of the Bosque power generation facility in Texas. It’s Arcapita’s largest asset-based investment in North America to date:

Located in Laguna Park, Texas, the Bosque facility commenced operations in 2002 as a natural gas fired power plant, and is currently undergoing conversion to a more efficient combined cycle facility with a capacity of over 800 megawatts. Bosque sells its energy and ancillary services into the Texas power market, where increasing demand is leading to tightening reserve margins.

Remember the now-cancelled Dubai Ports deal? This is just as bad, actually worse. Do we want to allow an Islamic bank, dominated by America-haters, anti-Semites, and those with ties to Al-Qaeda to control even one American power plant?
This is the first. But, sadly, it won’t be the last.
Arcapita already owns Northern Ireland’s largest utility, Viridium Group, PLC. Also raising questions is the fact that Arcapita bought the Texas Bosque plant with unnamed partners. Who are those partners (other than Houston’s Fulcrum Power Services, which was publicly disclosed)? Americans deserve to know.
DHS chief Michael “Serpenthead” Chertoff and a 12-member committee consisting of him and Treasury Department officials, the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS), were in charge of scrutinizing this deal (just as they were the Ports Deal). And they looked the other way, approving Arcapita’s acquisition of the Texas power plant, the latest in its $22.5 billion holdings. (As I’ve written, they only give a second look to 100 foreign acquisitions in the U.S. per year. That’s not enough.)

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As a matter of full disclosure, you should know that a friend of mine hired me as his attorney, when Arcapita–last year–threatened to sue him. His crime? He repeated my previous statements about Arcapita and Caribou Coffee and added his own damning research on these entities and their ties to terrorists and Islamists.
In my response to Arcapita’s threatened suit, their lawyer withered away from litigation threats when I informed him of the kind of discovery we would seek: financial records of Arcapita’s shareholders’ donations to Islamic charities and telethons financing terrorism, etc.
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Sadly, no-one looked beyond the smoke (and mirrors) when Arcapita sought to buy the Bosque plant.
Now, it is too late.
As I repeatedly comment with regard to these reports:
Remember the good old days . . . when Japan owned America?

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3 Responses

Again, the security of our country is jeopardized by these knuckleheads at Homeland Security. Why doesn’t the Congress recognize, or rather, admit to themselves these people are inept and only interested in lining thier pockets and securing future fortunes for themselves and their cronies.

freefromice on February 3, 2008 at 9:00 pm

“Many of its purchases are disturbing, but perhaps none is more so than its just-announced purchase of the Bosque power generation facility in Texas”
Why’s that then Debbie? Worried that they are going to blow it up? That hardly fits with Arcapita’s business model now, does it? I read your site today as a friend told me I wouldn’t believe the bile laden, pie-eyed invective that you repeatedly publish. I thought it hard to achieve, but you have out done any of the British press at the use of misleading speculation and insinuation.
I moved to the Middle East from London over a year ago. I had many apprehensions about the place before I arrived, many of which I now blame of commentators such as yourself. The truth of the region is not one of extremism and radicals, as it is not one of liberalism and progress. As with all things, there is a balance. It is easy for a British public to assume Americans to all be poorly educated, overweight and fearful of their own shadows, but having lived there for some time, I know better. As you clearly have never been to places like Bahrain, home of Arcapita and one of the most welcoming places on Earth, I feel it is wrong of you to pontificate about the intentions of an investment company from that KingdomĂ­s capital.
The object of Arcapita, along with that of so many firms here and in the US, is to make money. Despite having currency pegged to a terminally ill dollar, these bankers and private equity investors are managing to do this. There is no other motivation to their investments, no hidden agenda. Countries such as Bahrain have limited oil reserves and are seeking to diversify away from petrodollars.
I understand that your resentment of all Muslims stems for the unacceptable actions of a minority, especially against those of your own faith, however, spreading malicious invective achieves nothing good.
Please consider trying to be positive.

Rick T on February 18, 2008 at 6:52 am

I thought Al Jazeera was half-owned by Haim Saban?

Doug on February 25, 2008 at 2:13 pm

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