Beyond the Cusp

October 31, 2016

Rampant Roiling Anti-Semitic Hatred Rising

 

First and foremost, anti-Semitism rarely happens in a vacuum, it is almost always accompanied by another plague, the coarsening of the public to the needs of the less fortunate such as the handicapped, mentally challenged, reality challenged and hardened hearts against the unwanted unborn, a misnomer if ever there was one as almost every baby would be treasured if only allowed to be adopted instead of aborted. That is an issue for another time but first this must be stated. Adopting a baby in the United States has reached a point where Federal, State, Local and Federally mandated State requirements weed out the majority of families simply because they lack sufficient funds and do not know the right people and were unaware that today one need hire a lawyer for anywhere, depending on the aims of which child one wish adopt, of as high as a quarter of a million dollars and starting at over twenty thousand dollars just to clear the government regulations. Then there are financial requirements so a family who wishes to offer a young child love, affection and do everything they are able may not pass the litmus tests to adopt a child in the United States. Perhaps returning the responsibility for vetting potential adopting parents where it once was, with our religious institutions might return sanity to the current pay-to-play system.

 

The main plague which comes with anti-Semitic hatred is it never stops there and there is always the next group, and this time in the United States it may well be Native Americans who practice their native religions and honor their gods soon after by the Christians of all denominations and will eventually target the secularists who place their faith in mankind and government. Along the way there will be more than desirable targeting of the LGBT community as the dreamed of perfectly multicultural societal mixture is obtained where the United States population closely represents the official numbers claimed to exist in the world’s population. While this will be occurring there will be the continued drumbeat detesting the unproportional amount of “Islamophobia” defined as the illegal and undesired persecution of people of the Islamic faith far above the average of any other hate crimes. This is a politically correct smokescreen and a lie and in the more extremist corners of the Islamic society where this canard was hatched as a weapon actually means that the American people are not falling all over themselves seeking to convert to what they consider the only true religion to which all must belong. The graph below depicts the percentages of hate crimes for 2014 which is indicative of the average over the last fifty years including 2001 and 2002 after the 9/11 bombings. If the figures were proportional to population, then Islamic hate crimes should have been a mere one percent making the reported hate crimes sixteen times their population numbers, while Catholics are twenty-one percent of the population and had six percent of the reported hate crimes; so obviously there is a greater out of proportion of Islamic hate crimes. But that pales compared to Jews who are less than two percent of the population receive fifty-seven percent of hate crimes which is twenty-eight and a half times their population which, unlike what is often quoted fact, the anti-Islamic hatred is not the worst in the United States. The numbers do not tell the half of the story as anti-Semitic acts have grown at nearly double the rate of any other group simply in numbers which grows worse if population proportions are included. The numbers in Europe are even worse for the Jews who have begun to vacate the entire continent. The snakes of anti-Semitism are slithering freely in the world.

 

Hate Crimes Motivated by Religious Bias for 2014

 

There is another strange occurrence when it comes to anti-Semitism, it is found in some of the more remote corners of our little world, even those where there is no record of a Jew having lived or even conducted trade thus there having been no recorded contact with anything Jewish yet they exhibit anti-Semitic feelings. Recently the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) did a world-wide survey to measure the current levels of anti-Semitism in the world. A graphical representation of the main findings of their one-hundred nation survey is pictured below with greater map at the site linked above along with the entire report and updates. Looking at the map it becomes quite evident where the largest resentment, one might claim hatred, of the Jewish people arises. It should also not be surprising to know that the majority of the nations making up MENA (Middle East and North Africa colored in brown) evicted over ninety percent, some even one-hundred percent, of their Jewish populations in the decade after Israel was founded. These Jews by in large resettled in Israel as other nations made requirements that they have family or other stipulations to avoid taking any significant numbers while others simply refused any entry. These non-European Jews make up close to half the Jewish population and as intermarriage between European Jews and MENA Jews are common as is intermarriage across all ethnic lines within the Jewish community, that making any reference to a difference is rapidly becoming a moot point. Israel is rapidly approaching having simply Jews with no reference to nations or continents of origins and efforts are being made to further make the society one even to having a single Chief Rabbi when the next selection is made. Israel is facing a second influx of European Jews as anti-Semitism recently has grown worse in much of Europe.

 

World Anti-Semitism Survey

World Anti-Semitism Survey

 

The worst regions for anti-Semitism have also demonstrated other signs of bigotry and hatred. One example of such was the attempted genocidal erasure of the Yazidi People in Iraq by the Islamic State. There has also been systematic persecution of the Kurds as well as Sunni-Shiite violence going back centuries. Many MENA nations having basically rid themselves of their Jews are now working on eradicating the next group on their infidel roster, Christians. One of the least discussed bigotries and subjugations and eradications is the treatment of Christians in the world. A direct result of anti-Semitism is anti-Christianism. The usually noted path starts with the Jews and once the Jews have been eradicated comes the persecution of Christians throughout the world where Christianity is in the minority. What makes such hatred so dangerous today is that Christians are approaching minority status in many parts of Europe and the numbers of Jews in Europe is falling at an ever increasing rate which places the persecution of believing Christians ever closer and immediately behind them will fall the secularists, especially the professed atheists, as they will be identified as wayward Christians who have served their purpose of continued silence or even active participation in the removal of Jews and/or Christians. For those questioning how such will come to be, research history from around the year 620 through to 750 and consider that Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Spain and more were predominantly Christian and Jewish and before 615 there is no reference to Islam or Muslims in any name or form (see map below). Even the Saudi Arabian Peninsula from the Iraq and Southern Syrian borders to and including Yemen were almost entirely Christian, Jewish or idolaters many of which worshipped their Moon god ‘Hubal’ at the Kaaba where Mecca stands today. Hubal is reported to have gained favor over another of the pagan gods often referred to as ‘Allah” though many Islamic sources denounce this. Let us simply leave this as contested and not given the weight of fact until otherwise validated.

 

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

 

The reality is that should the uncontrolled influx of Islamic ‘refugees’ continue there will erupt even greater and more frequent violence. Many of the self-defacing lessons about Christian barbarism against Arabs and Muslims such as the Spanish Inquisition and the various Crusades were not offensive actions without prior historical facts of the Christians being forcibly thrown from their lands, remaining Christians enslaved or persecuted even crucified for denying Allah and Mohammad as their deity and prophet and renouncing Jesus as more important than Mohammad. The real downside came for the Jews who were persecuted by both Muslim and Christian always accused of assisting the other no matter who had won the day. Islam has attempted through three main pushes to conquer Europe with the first being tuned back at the battle of Tours and the other two stopped at the gates of Vienna. The defeat of Islam which is being avenged currently includes the sieges of Vienna and the defeat of the Ottoman Empire which replaced the first Caliphate and is often referred to as the last Caliphate. Turkish President Erdogan fancies the reestablishing of the Ottoman Empire and has started his quest by attempting to take Aleppo and Mosul while eradicating the Kurds. We discussed that recently here. There are other leaders who envision their rise to caliph such as the leader of the Islamist State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, or the Supreme Leader of Iran, not necessarily the current person but more some future Supreme Leader which will posthumously grant the predecessors with the honor of the title as well. The Saudi Royal Family should not be included as we do not intend to slight anyone. Once upon a time Saddam Hussein considered himself the next to conquer the world for Allah and become Caliph. Oh to dream…

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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October 9, 2016

Palestinians After More than Philistine Lands

 

The Palestinian leadership and spokespersons have made the false claim repeatedly that they are the descendants of the long dead Philistines and claim they are simple demanding their ancient homelands. There are any number of problems with this narrative starting with, but not ending with, the fact the Philistines were of Greek descent, not Arab. Then there is the little inconvenient fact that the Arab expansion from their ancestral homelands of the Arabian Peninsula waited until well after the Roman Empire had fallen, somewhere around 625 of the Common Era. All these and other little equally inconsequential truths aside there remains the one as to what exactly were the Philistine lands. Truth be known, the Philistines being a people of the sea held solely coastal cities with their five capital cities being Ashdod, Ashkelon, Gaza, Ekron and Gath. This would relate to Ashdod as the northern most city and continuing down the coast including Gaza on to approximately the Egyptian border possibly extending into parts of norther Sinai Peninsula. This would be about half again more land than Gaza which is currently held by Hamas and is sometimes referred to in editorials as Hamastan. Claiming to be the Philistines would rule out the entirety of their claims to lands of the West Bank, but why let realities get in the way.

 

Tribes of Israel and Land of the Philistines

Tribes of Israel and Land of the Philistines

 

What brought this on was reading some of the overly forgiving eulogies rightfully praising Simon Peres at his state funeral last week. The picture painted of Peres was one of a man whose life was spent in the unswerving desire for peace and of a gentle soul who was next to faultless and was the measure of understanding. I would have liked to have known of the man described, but that is often how eulogies are, aggrandizing those traits the world found laudable while ignoring those which did not meet the world’s universal measure of greatness. Thus almost none mentioned that Simon Peres was the driving force which drove the building of the experimental reactor at Dimona which could be used for the production of nuclear weapons grade materials, and his deals to acquire French Mirage jets which served as the backbone of the early Israeli Air Force as well. They omitted his support for settlements in what many once believed were lands which at best could have been thought to be negotiable Israeli lands and other Zionist endeavors which assisted in building a strong and viable State of Israel in the 1950s and early 1960s before Peres remade himself into a leftist icon and the man who pursued peace regardless of the consequences and never once saw any of the difficulties resulting from his actions. Simon Peres was a force of wild abandon that wreaked havoc as it broke down every argument and logical caution all in the name of Oslo.

 

Once he had drafted and brought the Oslo Accords, forcing them upon his own nation and government using every coercion and international pressure in order to force Israel to kneel before the altar of Oslo, as if it were the Golden Calf in the plains before Mount Sinai during the Exodus, and the results were similar in both cases. Simon Peres sold the chimera of land for peace and made such into an idolatrous religion with the Oslo Accords as the idol of worship and constructed a virtual Shrine of Oslo where land for peace was to be worshiped and the term Oslo was a sainted and holy word. This idolatrous cult diverted many an Israeli just as idolatrous cults of the Philistines, Egyptian, Hittites, Edomites, Assyrians, Greeks and Romans stole Israelite souls throughout Israeli history. In many of the times past the Israelite people and later the Jews were punished for their taking of false gods and worship of idols in place of Hashem. Some have postulated that the terrorism could have been interpreted as divine retribution for the worship of the doctrines of Oslo over the Commandments in Torah. There are many wisdoms and truths about the Land of Israel in Torah which we are not to question but to protect and serve to make them holy and dedicated to the worship of Hashem as commanded in Torah. Perhaps it would be of interest for this lay person to tell of the few with which even I am familiar.

 

First and foremost, the land of Israel belongs to Hashem and Hashem has assigned the Israelites, many call us Jews but that term defines Jews everywhere while Israelites are the Jewish People who have remained through time or returned to these ancient and holy lands thus making us separate in one aspect from other Jews, to tend and care for the lands of Hashem and the lands will care for us for as long as we keep Hashem’s Commandments. Hashem gave us these lands to sustain us as a reward for living by the Commandments of Torah and the lands will be bountiful in measure with our obedience and pure worship of Hashem as Commanded in Torah. There are more than Ten Commandments, there are six-hundred-thirteen Commandments, Mitzvot, in Torah and the Rabbis have added quite a number of regulations, one might call them, over the years as listed in Talmud and other doctrinaires. We are to follow these directives from Torah as if our lives depended upon them because they actually do depend upon them if the land is to support us and keep us. Those who do not follow Hashem and do these Commandments will be “vomited from these lands” as the lands will reject the sinners. After the last exile which lasted almost two-thousand years we hope we have learned this one truism at long last.

 

There are instructions as to how we are to face those living in the lands which Hashem was to give us and this should probably apply to the modern times as well. We are to give these people three alternatives, each less hospitable than the previous one. The most hospitable is they are welcome to remain in the lands and we will not settle where their cities exist as long as they leave us in peace to follow Hashem and they agree to obey the Noahic Code of seven commandments upon which all civilized nations are to be based according to Torah. These are not dissimilar to the Ten Commandments but are slightly less demanding (see image below). Those agreeing to this may live within the lands and will be afforded equal protection from outside attacks and be treated as equals with equal rights and be free to live providing they reside peaceable and obey the Noahic Code, the Devine Code of seven universal commandments.

 

Noahic Codes

Noahic Codes

 

The second choice is they may choose to leave the lands entirely. If they choose this they will be afforded ample time to gather their belongings, herds, moveable property, vehicles, wagons and household goods and leave to choose a new homeland and we promise not to harm them, chase after them or bring upon them undue hardship once they have left for their future new homelands. Granted, this was much more easily achieved when the Israelites came to the Promised Lands after the exodus from the exile in Egypt (Mizraim). Of the Canaanite Tribes there were a few who chose to remain and did so in peace, some chose to leave and went forth from the land unhindered, but most chose the last alternative to their dismay and eventual demise. The third choice is to bring war against the Israelites and to try and vanquish us. Those choosing to take this stance and bring war face the ultimate response, annihilation. In case of war we are instructed by Torah to bring complete and total war against those who choose to treat us with violence and we are instructed to kill them to the last individual and to destroy their cattle, goods, and all that is theirs so as to wipe their name from history from that point forward. Total war is what we are described to bring against those who bring violence against us in Hashem’s lands.

 

This is not how we have treated the violences brought against us and instead have sought to make a peace with those who have chosen war. Peace cannot be made with people whose stated desire is your eradication. Reading even the school books that the Western nations of Europe as well as the European Union, United States, Canada, Australia and the United Nations have paid for in full and some have sent representatives to review the content of the texts and approved them and they state that the Jew in Israel is a mortal enemy to the Palestinian who must murder them wherever they find them. This is taught over and over again in every class imaginable and such is reinforced through plays and exercises where they reenact the murder of IDF troops and Israeli Jews. They have children’s shows on television where they sing songs about the heroic martyrs who murdered Jews and how they too will murder Jews when they are older. The governments of the world know of these textbooks which they pay to have printed. They know of these children’s television shows and the summer camps which are paramilitary training camps which teach the genocidal murder of all Jews worldwide. The world governments and most of the academics know of the naming of parks, schools, summer camps, soccer teams, sports tournaments, streets, squares, mosques and buildings of all types after murderers of Jews, or terrorists, of what they call blessed martyrs which is their term for suicide bombers who successfully murdered Israeli civilians including often numerous Arab Israeli citizens. The world knows of these things and gives it tacit approval all the while condemning Israel for any defense put forth to protect Israeli civilians. The western nations, especially the United States, demand that Israel remove blockaded streets, remove checkpoints and allow Palestinians free access into Israel basically instructing Israel to not enforce the borders with Palestinian Authority semi-autonomous regions knowing full well that doing so will provide clear access for terrorists into Israeli cities where they can and will murder Israeli civilians and then when these attackers are prevented from murdering Israeli civilians by police and they are shot the world protests the extrajudicial killing as if there had been no threat to life despite the terrorists already having stabbed or shot any number of individuals often resulting in deaths or permanent debilitating injuries which scar, disfigure and disable the victims for life.

 

There is a term in history, more of an explanation really; it is the theory that Jewish blood is cheap, often costless and inconsequential. This was true in much of history both in Europe and the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) area under Islamic rule and Greek and Roman before that. One example were the Crusades where when they had numerous troops who were not battle-hardened and had never tasted blood (killed a man) they would assault Jewish towns and ghettos somewhat for sport and for the experience of killing so that when they reached the holy lands they actually had mastered their weapons and no longer gave killing a second thought which made them better soldiers. This training also made the slaughter of entire towns and cities in the holy lands easier on the soldiers’ consciences as they “purified” (rid) them of their non-Christian peoples. Do not believe this was only a Crusader practice as there was also purification in the Islamic world where they too were readying armies for the conquest and spread of Islam and often also for retaking the Holy Lands. As Jerusalem was of obvious value above and beyond that of any normal city as well as was Bethlehem and Nazareth, the Muslims were particularly driven to hold these cities simply to deny the Christians their prized possessions which they found made them lesser fighters, or at least that was the theory.

 

Once these cities, Nazareth, Bethlehem and Jerusalem had finally been conquered, the next city of premium value and declared the third most important city for Islam became Constantinople. It replaced Jerusalem which had previously held that title until it was finally secured and defended and proven beyond the ability of the Christians to challenge. They treasured Constantinople so much they even gave it an Islamic name, Istanbul. Once they had finally broken through the walls of Constantinople and taken the city and renamed it Istanbul, they went the additional step of taking the Hagia Sophia, the largest and most decorative cathedral of the world at that time, and transformed it with the addition of four minarets and named as the Aya Sofya First Imperial Mosque of Istanbul (modern picture below where it now serves as a museum covering its entire history). The Hagia Sophia has had a spotted history of grandeur and falling into gross disrepair as well as suffering a number of earthquakes and one pillaging. Today it has had most of its frescos restored and the plaster removed to reveal others once again displaying its grandeur as a museum open to the public. One can only hope this grand structure and example of glorious architecture remains in all of its historic beauty for posterity but that will remain to be seen.

 

Aya Sofya First Imperial Mosque of Istanbul Hagia Sophia Museum

Aya Sofya First Imperial Mosque of Istanbul
Hagia Sophia Museum

 

Once the Muslims had taken Constantinople and renamed it Istanbul it eventually fell to the Ottoman Turks, themselves Muslims, and to the allies after World War I after which it was returned to Turkish rule as Turkey remained as a nation in the aftermath of the Great War. They needed a new third holiest city for the conquests to continue. This did cause some differences of opinion as there were three separate cities which served at times holding the honor of greatest target of Islamic armies. The Islamic armies of the west which had invaded Europe by crossing the Gibraltar Straights and entering Spain, or Andalusia as the Muslim named the area, first gave the honor to Madrid and then Barcelona as the third holiest city in Islam, simply the manner in which the next targeted assaults intended to conquer were named. The Islamic forces then took most of Portugal so quickly along with Spain that Lisbon, as far as we could discern, was never so honored. The next target was France and the Muslim forces had experienced no real opposition of consequence so set their sights high and named Paris as their next great conquest. They ran into a problem somewhere around Tours, France in October of 732, where the forces under the leadership of Charles “the Hammer” Martel who defeated the Islamic forces in such a definitive battle that they were turned back out of France and back into Spain.

 

Meanwhile, as well as much later in history, the next target was in the west of Europe where the Islamic Ottomans targeted Vienna. The interesting item here is the Ottomans made two separate attempts to take the city laying siege to the city in 1529 and again in 1683. The Ottoman Empire led by Suleiman the Magnificent made the first attempt to take Vienna laying siege to the city for almost three months when nature decided to turn upon the Ottoman forces. First there came rain storms which destroyed what tunneling efforts had not already been defeated by the defenders of Vienna. The frontal assaults broke first at distance by the use of arquebus, a rifle-like hand cannon (see image below), and at closer range the use of long pikes broke the assaults. This was followed by an early and particularly heavy snow leading to a rout where many supplies and artillery were abandoned and many men captured. This led to years of conflict between the Austria-Hungarian forces backed by Spanish and Holy Roman forces against the Ottoman Empire forces leading eventually to another attempt at taking Vienna.

 

Arquebus, a rifle-like hand cannon

Arquebus, a rifle-like hand cannon

 

Beginning on July 14, 1683 the Ottoman forces under Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa Pasha and Kara Mehmed of Diyarbakir initially fought their way to the walls of Vienna and laid siege to the city. The siege held for a couple of months until September 12, 1683, when relief forces arrived to relieve the city. King John III Sobieski of Poland had prepared his forces for a total war of relief for the city of Vienna during the summer of 1683. He requested and received guarantees from all the neighboring countries and backed by the Holy Roman Empire states for a pact of nonaggression while he mustered his entire army to march to relieve Vienna. His forces arrived and backed by Holy Roman Cavalry leaving sufficient forces at key junctions and guarding all bridges to sustain resupply of his forces, King John III Sobieski defeated the Ottoman forces laying siege to Vienna and broke the stalemate thus setting his name into the history books as the man who began the eventual defeat of the Ottoman Empire and broke their advances into Europe once and for all. Thank you for tolerating this trip through history though off topic. I do tend to ramble.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

September 15, 2015

Who were the colonizers of MENA Pre-World War I?

 

We hear much talk by the mainstream media and especially the leftist editorialists about how the deprived victims the Arab populations of MENA (Middle East and North Africa) who were subjugated beneath the imperial European (and presumably American) colonizers. Exactly who were these colonizers and for how long had they exploited the citizens of MENA’s lands? Well, according to the liberal and mainstream media story line as they infer, though never quite say outright, were England, France, Italy and Spain. Further, there will be implications of over a century to potentially many centuries these colonial powers ruled over most of the MENA nations with many remaining under colonial control after World War I and even after World War II with the old dynasties lasting through 1970 or even 1979, and the most brash might even claim that there is a colonial power still ruling in the Middle East to this very day, though this last claim is as big a lie as they come. Perhaps a closer look is in order to get an honest picture.

 

Let’s begin with when the nations in MENA first came under imperial control and were placed under the presumed onus of foreign rule. Colonial rule came to the MENA nations in an early period which many of us first heard referenced when we studied the Bible. Perhaps some of the earliest colonial powers are not exactly what many of us would ever consider to be colonial powers yet as these were rulers who conquered other nations and subjugated them, these were the original colonialists. Terms can be applied to situations which most of us never would have considered applicable but when you are weaving a lie it is easy to go overboard in your definitions and apply modern terms to ancient events. The Egyptians would have been the first of the colonial powers many of us knew about despite there were others close to the same age such as the Hittites, Minoans, Mesopotamian, Persian and even Israel under Kings David and Solomon. All of these predated the better known Greek and Roman Empires and dates back to the ancient beginnings of China and Mayan cultures. A handy little timeline can be seen below. For the purpose of choosing a start date, why not begin around the year five-hundred which is after the fall of Rome and the Western Roman Empire while the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantine Empire was limping into the future feebly.

 

 

Timeline of World Civilizations 3700 BCE through 1700 CE

Timeline of World Civilizations 3700 BCE through 1700 CE

 

 

All the most ancient empires have fallen and for the most part there was peace with each city moving forward loosely attached to Constantinople across the entirety of MENA though the farther west one went across northern Africa, which had less the ties to the Byzantine rule. This left this area ripe for the pickings and a harvester was about to enter the scene. Shortly before the year seven-hundred a new force emerged under the banner of Islam and began its spread heading initially into the heart of the former lands of Babylon, Persia and into Egypt. There was little resistance as the Byzantine Empire was crumbling and unable to field a credible defense. Jerusalem fell in April 637 to the forces of the Rashidun Caliphate. The conditions for the surrender were understood to be the conquering Islamic rulers would give guarantees of civil and religious freedoms for the Christians under the rule from Jerusalem in exchange for Jizya, a tax on non-Muslims given in exchange for their protections which also included the Christians acceptance of Dhimmitude, a form of subservient lower class citizenship which was to be protected and tolerated and condoned. The spread of Islam took place largely in three stages, the first during the life of Mohammad, Next under the first four Caliphs, and finally under Umayyad Rule which was the basis for the Caliphate (see map below).

 

 

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

Expansion of Islam Across MENA and threaten Europe before Ottoman Rule

 

 

After the spread of the Caliphate which continued what was technically an empire which implied colonization over territories beyond the initial founding under Mohammad which was centered around Medina, the beginnings of Mohammad’s power, and included the Mecca region which Mohammad took partially as it was the closes power base, the Meccan rulers denied Mohammad’s claim to rightful ruler and had chased the early Mohammad from their territories as they rejected his preaching and teachings and determined he was a corrupting influence. The Caliphate had followed particular lines of succession which had split early after Mohammad’s death which formed the duality which still splits Islam into competing camps of Sunnis and Shiites. For the largest part the Sunni Muslims outnumbered and were the stronger camp though never quite capable, or more likely never made an effort to unify belief as beliefs can be near impossible to be completely defeated thus any effort would eventually prove fruitless and not worth the efforts expended. Instead the Sunni simply kept expanding their empire and largely tolerated the Shiites unless attacked and given no choice. When the two sects did engage each other the Sunni proved superior defeating and often killing the Shiites and their rulers in battle. The Caliphate continued to rule their lands after and expanding conquering Spain and headed into Frankish territory, early France, where the Caliphate reached is furthest advance. After taking Granada they advanced to the next major city, Tours, where a decisive battle turned the tides in the year 732 CE finally having a definitive defeat of the Caliphate forces. The battle victory is credited to Charles Martellus (the Hammer) Martel, who lost a mere thousand to fifteen-hundred of his forces, would later in history be granted the title of savior of Christianity. The vanquished was Abd Ar-Rahman Al Ghafiqi who was slain during the battle along with an estimated twelve-thousand of his warriors.

 

Beginning at the beginning of the fourteenth century the Ottoman Empire began to make its presence felt which would eventually lead to their conquering the entirety of the Caliphate at their most powerful. Until this point the Caliphate ruled over the near entirety of MENA and had spread into Spain and southeastern Europe. The map below shows the advances and periods of the Ottoman Empire conquering the Caliphate, bringing an end to the successions of Caliphs and temporarily ending the violence between Shiite and Sunni camps. The Ottoman succession follows the lineage of Ottoman Beylik who initiated the spread and domain of his family tribe in the year 1300 as his aim was likely like everybody before them, to conquer the known world. The expansions continued from his death in 1359 through 1451 when the next ruler of the Ottomans who expanded the borders notably during his rule through 1481 was Medmed II. He was followed by Selim I (1512-1520) and Suleiman the Magnificent (1520-1566). There was expansion beyond this period where the Ottoman Empire reached its apex before its fortunes began to wane.

 

 

Ottoman Empire Ascending from 1300 through 1683 includes Golden Age of Islam

Ottoman Empire Ascending from 1300 through 1683 includes Golden Age of Islam

 

 

The Ottoman Empire caught the Caliphate as it was in retreat after having lost Spain (Andalusia) during the Christian Reconquista which was part of the campaign to rid Spain of its Moorish Muslims as well as the Jews and any other group which was not Catholic and sworn fealty to the crown. This period of the Christian Reconquista was a logical following from the victory at Tours by Charles (the Hammer) Martel and spanned an area of time stretching from its earliest uprisings in the north and northwest in the Battle of Covadonga in the summer of 722, a full decade before the battle of Tours, but this revolt was the very beginning of the end of Islamic rule in Spain (Andalusia). The battles continued until finally the signing of the Treaty of Granada on November 25, 1491. This was the end of the fighting with the turning over of the city of the final southern coastal towns of Granada. It was during the final push that King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile that the infamous Spanish Inquisition was initiated. The Spanish Inquisition lasted from November 1, 1478 through to July 15, 1834. The Inquisition was the attempt, a rather thorough and successful attempt, to convert, drive out or otherwise deal with any residual Moorish or Islamic followers remaining in Spain along with ridding Spain of its Jews who either fled with the Muslims or were chased eventually across all of Europe ending up in Russia and Poland for a while until the Czar’s pogroms drove them into Poland and Germany which set the stage for the Shoah, the Holocaust.

 

There were other adventures which came from Europe somewhat as a response to Islamic Caliphate advances leading up to the fall of Constantinople in 1453. These were known as the Crusades which were an attempt to retake the Holy Land after the initial fall of Jerusalem in April 637. There were four separate crusades which took separate routes reaching the Holy Lands and gathered the troops from various countries, kingdoms and City-States they passed through and could find willing, or sometimes less than willing, forces to join in their ‘holy’ missions. The Crusader routes and periods of duration (shown below on map) began in 1095 with the First Crusade which continued until 1099. The Second Crusade began in 1147 and lasted until 1149. The Third Crusade was initiated in 1189 going into 1192. The Fourth Crusade began in 1202 and terminated in 1204. They had limited success and resulted in making some groups and individuals very wealthy, so much so that they remained in the Middle East despite having to live under Islamic rule. As far as having a definitive effect on the course of history, it is doubtful and at best might be credited with a residual effect of engaging forces which otherwise could have assisted with the attacks on Constantinople but not on events thereafter.

 

 

Crusader Routes I through IV spanning 1095 through 1289

Crusader Routes I through IV spanning 1095 through 1289

 

 

The Ottoman Empire final began to weaken while the European powers were feeling the results of the Renaissance, the Enlightenment and soon the industrial revolution. While these events were transforming Europe the Ottoman Empire mostly rested on their laurels and stagnated which would cost them as they began to be surpassed by Western technology and discoveries and inventions which led to superior weapons of war. There were three stages of decline for the Ottoman Empire as indicated on the map below. Parts of the Ottoman Empire were held by them for just over a half century, and were under Islamic Caliphate before that for another seven-hundred to almost a thousand years. The final areas of the Ottoman Empire finally fell during World War I and became the Mandate lands from which Iraq, Lebanon, Transjordan (currently Jordan), Syria and Israel were formed. The European colonialists held lands which were formerly under either Ottoman or Caliphate colonial rule for well over a century while the Europeans held these lands for periods of merely a decade or less to the longest being at most a century and those are the exceptions.

 

 

Ottoman Empire in Decline 1800 through 1914 and Start of World War I

Ottoman Empire in Decline 1800 through 1914 and Start of World War I

 

 

The next map depicts the lands as they were held by European nations after World War I had established their claims in the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. The area outlined in red depicts the mandate lands decided by the San Remo Conference in 1922. These demarcations were proposed initially by the Allied Powers of Great Britain, France, Italy, Japan and Russia. The United States observed the negotiations but was not a direct signatory as the United States desires no holdings, colonial states, mandate responsibilities and was hopeful that they could have assisted in ending this horrific war and had already made their feelings known concerning the restructuring of Europe and the redrawing of boundaries, founding independent states out of the Austria-Hungarian Empire. Eventually the United States was coerced into adding their approval of the Mandate System which many viewed as the most tenuous of the treaties despite the signature of King Faisal signing as the representative for the Arab League.

 

 

Colonial Structure Post World War I defined by Treaties from initial surrender in 1919 through the San Remo Conference setting up the Mandate System in 1922 plus Sykes-Picot redrawing of much of the Middle East

Colonial Structure Post World War I defined by Treaties from initial surrender in 1919 through the San Remo Conference setting up the Mandate System in 1922 plus Sykes-Picot redrawing of much of the Middle East

 

 

The final map below depicts the independent states and their dates when their current governments or their freedom from European colonial rule came about. These dates are meaningful as it puts to a lie the claims you will likely hear about how these nations were under colonial rule and only recently gained their independence. There will be other lies which will be half-truths or misinformation by giving one impressions knowing the reality is totally different.

 

 

Dates that the MENA nations received their independence after colonial rule many since the times of the Persians or even earlier

Dates that the MENA nations received their independence after colonial rule many since the times of the Persians or even earlier

 

 

The actual history which needs to be remembered is that many of these nations have been ruled by outside forces since the very early ages of civilizations while others were once inhabited by a nation which either was destroyed in history or faced a natural disaster which placed their population, that which survived, within another culture where they assimilated and disappeared from history though they often brought skills with them which benefited their host nation which likely made them more welcome. One example of the last occurrence was the Minoan civilization which resided on the Isle of Santorini in the Mediterranean Sea. Everything was going along really great as they had their religion and held their sacrifices, one of which is of interest if you know your Hebrew Bible. The Minoans had a spring ritual which was intended to bring fertility to their crops, their herds, their people and to benefit all parts of their society. In this sacrifice they had to prepare a feast using newly born calf boiled and then roasted and brushed with a preparation made from the calf’s mother’s milk. Anyway, the Minoans were happily fishing and enjoying the wonderful Mediterranean weather until the ground rumbled and the caldera erupted all but destroying the entire Island which has slowly resurfaced in the ensuing years. Santorini is located between the Greek mainland and Cyprus in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea (see picture with map insert below). Santorini is still a dangerous place and potentially threatened with another eruption. Like most volcanoes, it is not a matter of if but of when the next devastating eruption pours forth and erases all traces of human development or existence as the Island may be blown completely apart only to rise from the Mediterranean depths with a whole new look and geography just as it has done throughout all of history. The homes and island is beautiful and a jewel glittering in the Mediterranean Sea and we can only hope it continues to glitter from the lights on the porches of the homes and not from lava belching forth from out of the sea.

 

 

Volcano Thera Caldera Santorini Island Ancient Home of the Minoan Civilization until Eruption just ruined their day

Volcano Thera Caldera Santorini Island Ancient Home of the Minoan Civilization until Eruption just ruined their day

 

 

When we look at the history of MENA nations one need remember that much of the area was also the cradle of civilization and as such had a distressing habit of spawning great civilizations which came, expanded as far as they could reach, overreached or had a number of bad years or the next great civilization either defeated and overran their empire or the two had a merger of sorts as exampled by the Greeks being subsumed by the Roman Empire which did not exactly destroy the four Greek sub-Empires as much as they incorporated as the Greeks saw an advantage of being the center of education and philosophy while the Romans knew of the Greek intellect and their ability to fashion weapons. That is not to say there were not conflicts, but somehow both civilizations influenced each other for the better. But even before Rome, before the Greeks, before the Persians there were the Babylonians, the Israelite Kingdom, the Hittite, the Egyptian and the Mesopotamian Empires. Each ruled and the areas of MENA can be said to have survived as best the individual tribes, city-states, empires, nations and peoples could be expected. There were the Ancient Empires which lasted from prehistory through the Greeks of Alexander. Alexander the Great was the last of the ancient empire builders and his would be the first of the new age empires, the actual colonialists of history. From here many empires claimed to be setting out to conquer the world but they also knew that dream could not be realized in one’s lifetime. Even here the states of MENA faced the Greeks followed by the Romans then the Byzantines as Rome broke into two Empires, the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantine; and the western Roman or what became the Holy Roman Empire. Even European nations became colonized as there were the intra-European empires such as the Austrian-Hungarian Empire, Charlemagne, Napoleon and eventually the Nazis. After the Byzantine Empire collapsed there was the Caliphate followed by the Ottoman Empire, the two main Islamic Empires. During their time in power there were still the Mongols who came to conquer the world and instead converted to Islam by in large. China and India had their effect on the nations of the Middle East and also set up that area for who could take control of the trade routes. It was because of lack of access to these very trade routes which launched the European age of colonization which is the final or modern stage. Where the age of European conquest began in the late fifteenth century with Columbus and the other explorers heading to lay claim to the new lands in the Americas, then started an age of conquest as the natives were not as advanced when it came to warfare. The one advantage of living in the most contested lands in the world is you build up some formidable weaponry and tactics which the native tribes of the Americas were of no match.

 

The lands which form MENA were already colonized by the Ottomans who had a number of other cultures which also fought with their colonizers as all had a common bond which was Islam. This made these lands too much of a threat plus the Europeans had learned to have a healthy respect for the Ottomans and the followers of Islam through the Crusades and the wars which were barely able to constrain the Ottomans from sweeping across Europe. Much of that was due to the King of Poland and Lithuania John III Sobieski who came and relieved the city of Vienna from the Ottoman siege and brought that offensive to a conclusive end. Still, there was little attempt until into the nineteenth century before any assaults were waged on a by then weakened and almost backward sclerotic empire. Taking fair stock on the years of actual colonialization we see that the MENA nations, of which Syria is no exception except like Israel there was an Assyrian Empire which did not extend to anywhere near as vast an area as the more well-known colonizing empires, otherwise Syria has been a colony of somebody for a very long time. The ancient Empires spanned a good three-thousand years or more depending on sources. The middle empires which include the Roman, Byzantine, the Caliphate and the Ottoman Empires lasted almost two-thousand years. The final age was the European age of colonization of the MENA area which lasted less than two hundred years and when we speak of the Middle East itself it is even shorter barely making a century with Syria being far less and Iran almost untouched by the European colonizers. So, when the news reports tell of how these poor nations have been colonies for near an inestimable time and have not tasted freedom until only the most recent of times and even then most were brutal dictatorships, there is some truth. The problem is for the vast majority we were talking of Biblical era and pre Biblical times all the way through the Greeks and to the Roman Empire after the fall of the Eastern Roman Empire these lands were ruled by Muslims for the majority of the modern ages.

 

 

Mandate of San Remo for French and British including actual treaty demarcations for each nation

Mandate of San Remo for French and British including actual treaty demarcations for each nation

 

 

The Europeans only poured in at the end of the Ottoman Empire as it fell with the final areas which included Syria not falling until World War I thus not becoming a colony of the Europeans until around 1920 and with the areas of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Israel they were not colonies as much as protectorates being held secure from invasions by the British and the French starting in 1922 with the enactment of the San Remo Conference. The above map shows the League of Nations proposed British and French Mandates with the demarcations for Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Transjordan and Israel. This mandate was carved from the remains of the Ottoman Empire where the nation of Turkey was what would remain as the originator of the entire Ottoman Empire while these areas above plus Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen and Oman were brought into being and Saudi Arabia gained complete and uncontested control over Mecca and Medina. These maps and dates should arm those wishing to have the truth behind their arguments readily available to speak to what exactly Europe owes the refugees and victims of colonial rule when in reality it is the Arabian Peninsula, the originator of the Caliphate, and Turkey as the original source for the Ottoman Turks who founded the Ottoman Empire. The Europeans as far as Syria is concerned were a brief caretaker that lasted barely twenty-six years, exactly the same as it did for Israel and Israel has only had to take in over one million Jewish refugees from across the lands that make up MENA as many of them drove their Jews from their lands during the late 1940s and through the 1950s with some from Ethiopia and Russia coming even later and still taking in the Bnei Menashe from India and Israel will continue to take in Jewish refugees from the world over and has also taken in other refugees including but not limited to the Vietnamese boat people and Christians seeking refuge from persecutions. It makes one wonder how many refugees have been taken in by Saudi Arabia, Kuwait (who after the Gulf War which freed them from Saddam Hussein thanked the Palestinian workers for the support which Yasser Arafat lauded on Saddam Hussein and flew every last one back to the Palestinian Occupied areas of Judea and Samaria), Qatar (whose Al-Jazeera news service so gallantly praised and supported the uprisings in the hopes of placing the Muslim Brotherhood in charge of as many nations as possible and almost won Egypt and really urged on the war in Syria until it turned so very ugly) or Bahrain. One might expect these wealthy nations to assist their Arab brothers and sisters but nary a word from them except to demand that Europe do their part because the Europeans had colonies in the area for an average of fifty years compared to the one thousand year rule of Islam as the Caliphate and the Ottoman Empires. Europe should offer to take in refugees one for every twenty that the nations of the Arabian Peninsula give refuge to, that would be fair and proportional but don’t hold your breath.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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