Cordoba, Al Andaluz, Golden Age & More Islamic Fairy-tales

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Wonderful, Wonderful Cordoba

Posted By David Solway/Frontpagemag

The Media Myth of Córdoba

Unfortunately for the credulous and gullible amongst us, the entire story is bogus. The myth of “the Golden Age of Islam” in Iberia is just that, a myth. (Andrew Bostom plucks this goose here on the Gates of Vienna)

The proposed construction of the “Cordoba” mega-mosque near Ground Zero has served as a catalyst for a renewed interest in the history of Cordoba under Islamic rule in Al-Andalus (Spain). Many of those who are opposed to Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf’s presumed “bridge building” initiative, as represented by the project first called Cordoba House and now renamed Park51, have gone back to the history books, or have decided to speak out and address the purport of the designation: “Cordoba.” For instance, Victor Davis Hanson in a recentinterview [1] alludes to “the rather silly evocation of Cordoba; in toto, it was not really a utopian medieval city of understanding.” And Lisa Graas shows [2] that “things started out rather bad under Muslim rule…and went downhill over time…The history for us is clear and it is a history that no Catholic would like to see a repeat of in Manhattan.” Cordoba Jews fared better for a time, as Jane Gerber lavishly chronicles in The Jews of Spain [3], but they too eventually fell victim to persecution. Even the renowned Jewish sage Moses Maimonides [4] was forced to flee the city, escaping to Fez where he lived for years disguised as a Muslim.

And yet all this should have been evident in the weeks and months  after the Twin Towers were destroyed and nearly three thousand people were murdered by so-called “Islamist” terrorists. For it would not take long before Muslim and non-Muslim apologists for the “religion of peace” would hearken back to the ostensibly genial and temperate era of Moorish Spain, a time, we were instructed, when Christians and Jews were welcomed by their Muslim overlords and peacefully integrated into the life of the realm, permitted to worship freely and even received into the learned professions, many as katibs (secretaries) to the Caliph. Such conjurings by journalists and pundits constituted nothing less than an intellectual embarrassment. Mutatis mutandis, these fairy tale votaries resembled an updated version of Danny Kaye and crew singing “Wonderful, Wonderful Copenhagen [5],” that “friendly old girl of a town.”

I recall coming across numerous references to the splendors of Cordoba in the wake of the 9/11 tragedy, which were obviously intended to deflect indignation and fury and to distill for a supposedly vulgar multitude the deeper meaning of Islam. For example, in order to strengthen and validate a benign conception of Islam, attention was (and still is) frequently drawn to the intellectual activity of Cordoba, in particular to the translation and transmission of the seminal texts of the classical world that would otherwise have been lost to mankind. What such advocates for the great Islamic contribution to the Western library forgot is that none of this material was original to Islam.

As David Bentley Hart writes in Atheist Delusions [6], “Islam was the beneficiary of Eastern Christendom.” It was “Syriac-speaking Christians who provided an invaluable caste of scholars and physicians, and through them the achievements of Greek and Roman antiquity passed into Islamic culture.” In fact, not Moorish Spain but medieval Italy was “perhaps a more important port of entry for Greek texts into Western Europe…in the late eleventh century,” when scholars, poets, clerics and doctors fled from the Muslim conquest of Constantinople to Pisa, Venice and Palermo. But resonant specifics are precisely what the glib justifiers of a presumably Islamic monument to human progress, of Cordoba as a shining city on the hill, have labored to suppress.

The point they were (and are) trying to make, of course, is that this particular epoch represents the essence of Islam, a religion which, according to President Obama, advances “the dignity of all human beings,” and which was later hijacked by extremists who perverted the root message of the faith. The destruction of the WTC and the human carnage of the event was, somehow, an aberration, a “man-caused disaster” which had nothing to do with the real Islam. Ground Zero was only a grotesque distortion of the true Islamic inglenook where marchers for peace warm their bunions.

In order to maintain this fantasy, there is no recognition of the fact that the suicide terrorists, as Charles Krauthammer points out in an article titled “Moral Myopia at Ground Zero[7],” “were the leading, and most successful, edge of a worldwide movement…with cells in every continent, with worldwide financial and theological support, with a massive media and propaganda arm and with an archipelago of local sympathizers.” Those who defend the Cordoba project, dreaming the dream of pastoral reconciliation betokened by what is, at least in part, an Andalusian mirage, facilitate the task of the jihadists.

As I argued in The Big Lie [8], which I began writing in September 2001 a few days after the catastrophe (and which was published in 2007), the golden age of Moorish Spain that features in the history books and glitters in the public imagination is, to a significant degree, something of a historical fiction: the Almoravid and Almohad dynasties were by no means an unbroken halcyon interregnum in the annals of Islam but cruel and intolerant dispensations given to fervid and prolonged outbursts of savagery. Even the famed Caliphate of Cordoba, as Hanson and others indicate, was not the uniformly enlightened Castle in Spain of popular fancy. Islamic tolerance, as Bat Ye’or in her The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam [9] unpacks for us, is more of a modern fable than a historical verity.

Nothing is ever uni-dimensional when it comes to historical exegesis; complexities must always be allowed for. The history of Cordoba, which Richard Fletcher masterfully elaborates in Moorish Spain [10], was exceedingly chequered: “years of peace and plenty under the Caliphs of the tenth century,” patronage of the intellectual and scientific disciplines and economic prosperity, broken by years of turbulence, political intrigues, exactions of tribute, fratricidal strife, sumptuary laws, vestimentary differentiation, slavery and in general the ill treatment of minorities. Ultimately, as Fletcher writes, “The simple and verifiable historical truth is that Moorish Spain was more often a land of turmoil than it was a land of tranquility.” One wing of the historical diptych is impressive in the context of the age; the other is disfigured with the limning of atrocities. It is this second panel that is left out of the picture of Cordoba that has been painted for us.

And that is the trouble. A half-truth readily morphs into a complete lie. The misery and spoliation of conquered peoples, the executions and martyrdoms, the humiliation and oppression which is also Cordoba, are airbrushed out of the historical register. Amnesia and “bridge-building” are the order of the day. The pristine figment of an idealized Cordoba, the cherished beacon of tolerance and enlightenment in an otherwise dark and barbarous period, is meant to disarm skepticism in the present. “Cordoba” is, paradoxically, code for both grandeur and deception. I would respectfully suggest that the Shanksville memorial [11] in honor of the heroic victims of Flight 93, currently under construction and scheduled to be dedicated on September 11, 2011—which is, interestingly enough, also the slated opening date [12] of the Cordoba mosque—might be a far more relevant and exalted pledge of remembrance than a minaret at Ground Zero.

Meanwhile, a vast chorus of Islamophiles are still busy warbling a melodious ditty to the pleasures, delights and glories of an immaculate Cordoba, a wonderful, wonderful Cordoba with its “welcome so warm and gay,” the Copenhagen of its day of which the Park51 mosque is touted as an exemplar and a revival. It is pitched to an increasingly dubious public as a metaphorical “bridge” to the long-desired destination of ecumenical harmony. Perhaps it should just be called al-Qantara, “the Bridge,” rather than the inscrutable Park51.

A bridge, however, is not always what it seems. Richard Fletcher reminds us that “the first mosque in Cordoba was built on a central site in the city near the Roman bridge over the river Guadalquivir.” The parallel is striking. The thirteen-storey high Cordoba House mosque is planned for the “central site” in New York City near the place where an architectural cynosure once stood. Is the mosque a bridge or a structure meant to overshadow it?

Questions remain. Assuming it is some kind of bridge, who is crossing it? Which way does traffic flow? Both ways? Or is it rather a permanent and grandiose pontoon intended to facilitate an inexorable invasion under cover of “mutual understanding,” what former Muslim and author [13] Sayed Kamran Mirza calls [14] “an iconic symbol of Islamic victory”?  And where exactly will we find ourselves once the bridge has been crossed? In the modern or the medieval age? In New York? Or in Cordoba?

What One Needs to Know about Islam

The controversial “Ground Zero” mosque will be launched by the so-called Cordoba Initiative. So Cordoba stands for the legendary Al-Andalus, where Muslims, Christians and Jews lived together in peace, right?

(By the Editrix/ via PI)

Not quite. Cordoba stands for many other things as well. It was the name of the Islamic empire’s center, from where Islam ruled most of the then known world. It’s stands for one of the grandest mosques of that time which was, notabene, built on the ashes of a Christian Visigoth church. It stands, too for a massacre of the Jews of Cordoba in 1011 (yes, Al-Andalus wasn’t quite what Muslims and their enablers would like us to believe) and for the rape of the city by the Almohades in 1148. Some websites claim that the year 1011 carries some symbolism as well, but while that is entirely possible, it is too far-fetched to make it a point here.

To understand the full implications one has to know two basically simple things:

First, Christians and Jews build their places of worship to, well, worship. Muslims build mosques to symbolize Islamic supremacy over others, to proselytize, to politicize, as an arsenal.

Second, Muslims act on symbols.

The Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem on top of the Jewish temple symbolizes Islamic supremacy over Judaism, the Ummayyad Mosque in Syria is built on top of St. John the Baptist, Hagia Sophia in Constantinople was converted into a mosque as a symbol of Islamic supremacy over Christianity. The Cordoba Initiative mosque will be built on the ashes of almost thousand Americans who couldn’t be recovered after September 11, 2001. An innocent naive fallacy? Maybe, but I doubt it.

Here are some examples from Germany, my country, a country with, as of 2009, 4.3 million Muslims (5.4% of the population). Of these, 1.9 million are German citizens (2.4%). As of 2006, there were about 15,000 ethnic German converts. The large majority are of Turkish origin. Most Muslims live in Berlin and the big cities of former West Germany, mainly in the those of the industrial stronghold along the rivers Rhine and Ruhr.

The Yavuz-Sultan-Selim mosque in Mannheim is one of the biggest in Germany. Its patron, Selim I was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1512 to 1520. Selim carried the empire to the leadership of the Sunni branch of Islam by his conquest of the Middle East. On the eve of his death in 1520, the Ottoman empire spanned almost 1 billion acres.

More than 50 mosques in Germany are called Fatih. Fatih means conqueror and refers to Mehmet II who was Sultan of the Ottoman Empire for a short time from 1444 to September 1446, and later from February 1451 to 1481. At the age of 21, he conquered Constantinople in a bloodbath, bringing an end to the Byzantine Empire. Mehmet continued his conquests in Asia, with the “Anatolian reunification”, and in Europe as far as Belgrade.

Other popular names for mosques in Germany are:

Aksa/Aqsa means “farthest”, and in this context the “farthest [so far] from Mecca”. The Muslim claim to Jerusalem and the Holy Land comes in here as well.

Ayasofya is emblematic for and purposefully reminiscent of Christian humiliation.

Hicret (arabic hidschra) refers to Mohammeds flight from Mekka to Medina in 622.

Imam Ali.

Al-Quds stands for Jerusalem. (It was an Al-Quds mosque in Hamburg from where Mohammed Atta set out to promote his very own brand of conquering.)

Selimiye refers to the megalomaniac Selimiye mosque in Edirne:

Then we have the Merkez mosque in Duisburg (Merkez means stronghold in Turkish), currently the biggest in Germany and probably in Europe as well. I discussed it previously for example here and here.

The controversial projected mosque in Cologne is called “Merkez” as well, which is (politically correct) translated not as “stronghold”, but as “center”. Everything not to let Muslims appear in a less than angelic light. I have covered the interesting and complex controvery that was triggered by the Cologne mosque, but went far beyond, it here:

» 02/17: What Americans don’t twig
» 04/26: Innocents Abroad
» 04/30: The Unembarrassables
» 05/10: Loose Apes with Razors
» 05/10: Shameless Cologne
» 05/13: The “Fission Fungus”
» 05/15: Rent-A-Nazi
» 10/02: German Patriot now Muslim

Another popular name for mosques in Germany is Bilal. No, this has no apparent, blatant connection to Muslim conquest, however, it is interesting in a different sort of way. The Ethiopian Bilal ibn Ribah was the first Muezzin in the history of Islam and called from the rooftop of the first mosque, no minaret in sight. Until today, minarets are not mandatory in Saudi Arabia and many minaret-less and relatively inornate mosques among the older ones, some of them very important, can be seen there. Why? What about “symbolism”? Saudi Arabia was, and is, Muslim heartland and needed no “spearheads” to impress and bully infidels.

Ask for the name of the mosque next to you and do a quick Google search. The result might be interesting.

One more word about the Cordoba Initiative. Granted for argument’s sake that the Ground Zero mosque, pardon me, the Cordoba outreach center to make better people of infidels, was planned and is being realized in good faith. Then we still have to deal with the sensitivity aspect, haven’t we. Wasn’t it abundantly clear in the first stages of the planning process already that only too many Americans wouldn’t react kindly to a project like that? It seems that the sensitivity and respect Muslims are always so stridently demanding for themselves is utterly missing when they are addressing non-Muslims. Is it too far fetched to speculate how the idea of a German cultural center together with Protestant church, theater, swimming pool, the lot, as a gesture of reconciliation at the Westerplatte would be received by the Poles? Or why the Japanese did never propose a center for the promotion of their culture at Pearl Harbor?

I will never forget where I have been when 9/11 happened and how long it took for the reality of WHAT had happened to seep in — and the horror when it finally had. Shortly after 9/11, an anonymous New Yorker released a Macromedia Flash presentation with a collage of news photos from the attacks and the victims. “Only Time” by Enya (which I hadn’t heard before) was used as a soundtrack. The Flash presentation spread rapidly over the internet and it is still available. I don’t know how many times I’ve watched it during the days and weeks following 9/11, bawling my eyes out. 30 times? 50 times? How can I ever forget the pictures of those who chose to fall to their death rather than to burn or to suffocate. Some choice. How the thought of the hundreds of firefighters who rushed to the scene to never come back? How the face of the gallant Father Mychal Judge who died, 68 years old, in a hail of steel and concrete as he administered the last rites to a firefighter and an office worker. And you, you who have been there, allow THEM to build one of their disgusting symbols of heathen supremacy over YOUR culture on the ashes of the victims.

What else do you need to know about Islam?

8 thoughts on “Cordoba, Al Andaluz, Golden Age & More Islamic Fairy-tales”


  2. On “Wonderful, wonderful Cordoba”.
    Your general point about Muslim intolerance may be right but your history sucks.
    You say
    “medieval Italy was “perhaps a more important port of entry for Greek texts into Western Europe…in the late eleventh century,” when scholars, poets, clerics and doctors fled from the Muslim conquest of Constantinople to Pisa, Venice and Palermo”
    Actually Constantinople fell to the Catholics (Latins) in 1204 and they pretty much ruined the place. The city didn’t fall to the Muslims until 1453.
    You say
    “the Almoravid and Almohad dynasties were by no means an unbroken halcyon interregnum in the annals of Islam ”
    Both these dynasties took power after the Emirate of Cordoba ended. The Almoravids were quite tolerant, the Almohads were not.
    Unfortunately, anyone as factually challenged as you cannot be trusted to say anything worth reading.

  3. The established facts are not disputed:

    The Fourth Crusade (1202–1204) was originally intended to conquer Muslim-controlled Jerusalem by means of an invasion through Egypt. Instead, in April 1204, the Crusaders of Western Europe invaded and conquered the Christian (Eastern Orthodox) city of Constantinople, capital of the Eastern Roman Empire (Byzantine Empire). This is seen as one of the final acts in the Great Schism between the Eastern Orthodox Church and Roman Catholic Church.

    As for the second part, I have forwarded your writing to Dr Andrew Bostom who wrote this article. Stay tuned, you might get your answer!
    The crusaders established the Latin Empire (1204–1261) and other “Latin” states in the Byzantine lands they conquered.

  4. Update:

    Sadistic Murder and Plunder Called ‘Golden Age”

    This is an account from Muslims themselves:

    Age of Sadistic Murder and Plunder Called ‘Golden Age’ by Islam:

    Members of Islam like to say that Muslims created a Golden Age in Spain where peace reigned and Jews had freedom, but their propagandist apologist forget to mention that this so called ‘Golden Age’ was based on murder and stealing of what belonged to others. This fact, reality per John 8:32, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (Authorized King James Bible; AV) was even duly recorded by one of their own, Ibn Abd-el-Hakem, in his historical account of the Islamic conquest of Spain.

    He wrote, < <<” When the Moslems settled in the island, they found no other inhabitants there, than vinedressers. They made them prisoners. After that they took one of the vinedressers, slaughtered him, cut him in pieces, and boiled him, while the rest of his companions looked on.”>>>. So as can be seen from this, the so called “Golden Age” was really an age of land stealing and sadistic murder by members of Islam that they have never payed reparation for until today.

    Now let’s look at the historic account of their land stealing and sadistic murders as told by one of their own:
    The Islamic Conquest of Spain
    Medieval Sourcebook: Ibn Abd-el-Hakem: The Islamic Conquest of Spain
    The Muslim expansion continued throughout the sixth and into the seventh century. In 711 the Berber Tarik invaded and rapidly conquered Visigothic Spain. Famously by 733 the Muslims reached Poitiers in France. There a battle, more significant to westerners than Muslims, halted the Muslim advance. In truth by that stage Islam was at its limits of military expansion. Tarik gave his name to “Jabal (mount of) Tarik” or, as we say, Gibraltar. In 712 Tarik’s lord, Musa ibn-Mosseyr, joined the attack. Within seven years the conquest of the peninsula was complete. It became one of the centers of Moslem civilization, and the Umayyad caliphate of Cordova reached a peak of glory in the tenth century. Spain, called “al-Andulus” by Muslims remained was at least partially under Muslim control until 1492 when Granada was conquered by Ferdinand and Isabella.
    Musa Ibn Nosseyr sent his son Merwan to Tangiers, to wage a holy war upon her coast. Having, then, exerted himself together with his friends, he returned, leaving to Tarik Ibn Amru the command of his army which amounted to 1,700. Others say that 12,000 Berbers besides 16 Arabs were with Tarik: but that is false. It is also said that Musa Ibn Nosseyr marched out of Ifrikiya [Africa] upon an expedition into Tangiers, and that he was the first governor who entered Tangiers, where parts of the Berber tribes Botr and Beranes resided. These bad not vet submitted themselves. When he approached Tangiers, be scattered his light troops. On the arrival of his cavalry in the nearest province of Sus, he subdued its inhabitants, and made them prisoners, they yielding him obedience. And he gave them a governor whose conduct was agreeable to them. He sent Ibn Beshr Ibn Abi Artah to a citadel, three days’ journey from the town of Cairwan. Having taken the former, he made prisoners of the children, and plundered the treasury. The citadel was called Beshr, by which name it is known to this day. Afterwards Musa deposed the viceroy whom be bad placed over Tangiers, and appointed Tarik Ibn Zeiyad governor. He, then, returned to Cairwan, Tarik with his female slave of the name Umm-Hakim setting out for Tangiers. Tarik remained some time in this district, waging a holy war. This was in the year 92. The governor of the straits between this district and Andalus was a foreigner called Ilyan, Lord of Septa. He was also the governor of a town called Alchadra, situated on the same side of the straits of Andalus as Tangiers. Ilyan was a subject of Roderic, the Lord of Andalus [i.e. king of Spain], who used to reside in Toledo. Tarik put himself in communication with Ilyan, and treated him kindly, until they made peace with each other. Ilyan had sent one of his daughters to Roderic, the Lord of Andalus, for her improvement and education; but she became pregnant by him. Ilyan having heard of this, said, I see for him no other punishment or recompense, than that I should bring the Arabs against him. He sent to Tarik, saying, I will bring thee to Andalus; Tarik being at that time in Tlemsen, and Musa Ibn Nossevr in Cairwan. But Tarik said I cannot trust thee until thou send me a hostage. So be sent his two daughters, having no other children. Tarik allowed them to remain in Tlemsen, guarding them closely. After that Tarik went to Ilyan who – was in Septa on the straits. The latter rejoicing at his coming, said, I will bring thee to Andalus. But there was a mountain called the mountain of Tarik between the two landing places, that is, between Septa and Andalus. When the evening came, Ilyan brought him the vessels, in which he made him embark for that landing-place, where he concealed himself during the day, and in the evening sent back the vessels to bring over the rest of his companions. So they embarked for the landing-place, none of them being left behind: whereas the people of Andalus did not observe them, thinking that the vessels crossing and recrossing were similar to the trading vessels which for their benefit plied backwards and forwards. Tarik was in the last division which went across. He proceeded to his companions, Ilyan together with the merchants that were with him being left behind in Alchadra, in order that be might the better encourage his companions and countrymen. The news of Tarik and of those who were with him, as well as of the place where they were, reached the people of Andalus. Tarik, going along with his companions, marched over a bridge of mountains to a town called Cartagena. He went in the direction of Cordova. Having passed by an island in the sea, he left behind his female slave of the name of Umm-Hakim, and with her a division of his troops. That island was then called Umm-Hakim. When the Moslems settled in the island, they found no other inhabitants there, than vinedressers. They made them prisoners. After that they took one of the vinedressers, slaughtered him, cut him in pieces, and boiled him, while the rest of his companions looked on. They had also boiled meat in other cauldrons. When the meat was cooked, they threw away the flesh of that man which they had boiled; no one knowing that it was thrown away: and they ate the meat which theh had boiled, while the rest of the vinedressers were spectators. These did not doubt but that the Moslems ate the flesh of their companion; the rest being afterwards sent away informed the people of Andalus that the Moslems feed on human flesh, acquainting them with what had been done to the vinedresser.

    As Abd-Errahman has related to us on the authority of his father Abd-Allah lbn Abd-El-Hakem, and of Hisham Ibn Ishaak: There was a house in Andalus, the door of which was secured with padlocks, and on which every new king of the country placed a padlock of his own, until the accession to power of the king against whom the Moslems marched. They therefore begged him to place a padlock on it, as the kings before him were wont to do. But he refused saying, I will place nothing on it, until I shall have known what is inside; he then ordered it to be opened; but behold inside were portraits of the Arabs, and a letter in which it was written: “When this door shall be opened, these people will invade this country.”

    When Tarik landed, soldiers from Cordova came to meet him; and seeing the small number of his companions they despised him on that account. They then fought. The battle with Tarik was severe. They were routed, and he did not cease from the slaughter of them till they reached the town of Cordova. When Roderic heard of this, he came to their rescue from Toledo. They then fought in a place of the name of Shedunia, in a valley which is called this day the valley of Umm-Hakim [on July 11, 711, at the mouth of the Barbate river]. They fought a severe battle; but God, mighty and great, killed Roderic and his companions. Mugheyth Errumi, a slave of Welid, was then the commander of Tarik’s cavalry. Mugheyth Errumi went in the direction of Cordova, Tarik passing over to Toledo. He, then, entered it, and asked for the table, having nothing else to occupy himself. This, as the men of the Bible relate, was the table of Suleyman Ibn Dawid, may the blessing of God be upon him.

    As Abd Errahman has related to us on the authority of Yahva Ibn Bukeir, and the latter on the authority of Leyth Ibn Sad: Andalus having been conquered for Musa Ibn Nosseyr, he took from it the table of Suleyman Ibn Dawid, and the crown. Tarik was told that the table – was in a citadel called Faras, two days’ journey from Toledo, and the governor of this citadel was a nephew of Roderic. Tarik, then, wrote to him, promising safetv both for himself and family. The nephew descended from the citadel, and Tarik fulfilled his promise with reference to his safety. Tarik said to him, deliver the table, and he delivered it to him. On this table were gold and silver, the like of which one bad not seen. Tarik, then, took off one of its legs together with the pearls and the gold it contained, and fixed to it a similar leg. The table was valued at two hundred thousand dinars, on account of the pearls that were on it. He took up the pearls, the armour, the gold, the silver, and the vases which he had with him, and found that quantity of spoils, the like of which one had not seen. He collected all that. Afterwards he returned to Cordova, and having stopped there, he wrote to Musa Ibn Nossevr informing him of the conquest of Andalus, and of the spoils which he had found. Musa then wrote to Welid Abd Ed-Malik’ informing him of that, and throwing himself upon his mercy. Musa wrote to Tarik ordering him not to leave Cordova until he should come to him. And he reprimanded him very severely. Afterwards Musa Ibn Nosseyr set out for Andalus, in Rajab of the year 93, taking with him the chiefs of the Arabs, the commanders, and the leaders of the Berbers to Andalus. He set out being angry with Tarik, and took with him Habib Ibn Abi Ubeida Elfihri, and left the government of Cairwan to his son Abd Allah who was his eldest son. He then passed through Alchadra, and afterwards went over to Cordova. Tarik then met him, and tried to satisfv him, saving: “I am merely thy slave, this conquest is thine.” Musa collected of the monev a sum, which exceeded all description. Tarik delivered to him all that he had plundered.

    note: The selection above is from the History of the Conquest of Spain by the Egyptian Ibn Abd-el-Hakem (d. 870 or 871 ), who also wrote a history of Egypt. He mixes myths and fact in his account, which was written a century and a half after the events it describes.
    [source – Ibn Abd-el-Hakem, History of the Conqziest of Spain, trans. by John Harris Jones (Gottingen, W. Fr. Kaestner, 1858), pp. 18-22]>>>.

    As can be seen, many Muslims as always are hateful, greedy, and lust for violence and this is clearly shown by their sadistic murders of owners of land they are stealing, their lustful plunder, their attacking of others that have done them no wrong, etc. They never voluntarily give up what the have stolen, but call their horrible wrongs “Golden Ages.” But they forget to mention the so called ‘Golden Age’ is one of sadistic murder, plunder and stealing what rightfully belongs to others.

    Here’s a related link to the conquest of “Al Andaluz”

  5. VIRGINIA MILITARY INSTITUTE celebrates the Islamic invasion of Spain

    Big Peace (H/T Barbara P) Virginia Military Institute is commemorating the 1300th anniversary of the invasion and occupation of Spain under the Muslim warlord Tariq ibn Ziyad in 711 A.D. The March 23-25 celebration entitled “711-2011: East Meets West” and organized by VMI’s Center for Leadership and Ethics, isscheduled to feature standard Muslim apologists Reza Aslan and Akbar Ahmed. VMI Superintendent Gen. J.H. Binford Peay has even filmed an invitation to the celebration.

    Much more on Barenaked

  6. Zuhdi Jasser and Robert Spencer debate Islamic reform, (Zuhdi tries to sell the ‘Golden Age’ crapola)

    Saying that Europe was in a Dark Age in the 13C. Oxford, Cambridge, Paris, Bologna, Univerities where up and running. St Thomas’s and St St Bartholomew’s hospitals were in use in London. Common Law the law that is used in the USA was formulated in England at that time. Trial by jury introduced. Magna Carter had been written. Europe had already translated the Koran into Latin (and thought it was an awful book). Parliament had been founded in England. Peter Abelard, Albert Magnus, Thomas Aquinas, Roger Bacon, Stephen Langton etc, etc, lived in this era.

    And if he had bothered to watch the Royal Wedding he might have noticed Westminster Abbey, that was built during his so called Dark ages.

    So from what this man calls the Dark Ages, we got our universities, hospitals, our system of government, our judicial and legal system. Not bad from supposed knuckle draggers living in the so called Dark Ages.

    Back to Al Andaluz:

    SPAIN: Muslim invaders demand to use Catholic Church in Cordoba as a mosque

  7. Golden Fairy Tales:

    The Golden Age of Islam – A Second Look

    The period from the death of Muhammad through the 13th Century marks the glory days of the Islamic empire. It was a period of commerce, industry and intra-cultural synergies and a flourishing of the sciences, art, medicine and architecture. It was the epitome of what civilization should be. Just ask Obama. In his 2009 Cairo speech the president said that Islam “carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe’s Renaissance and Enlightenment,” and praised the “innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra; our magnetic compass and tools of navigation; our mastery of pens and printing; our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed.”

    While Central Europe languished in the Dark Ages of ignorance, fear and superstition following the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century (so the story goes), it was the Islamic world that carried the torch of Classical civilization to a Europe finally stumbling out of the Dark Ages in the 15th century.

    By contrast the Islamic world flourished during the Dark Ages: by the 13th century, both Africa and India had become great centers of Islamic civilization, and soon after, Muslim kingdoms were established in the Malay-Indonesian world while Chinese Muslims flourished throughout China.

    Islam therefore is a religion for all people from whatever race or background they might be: Islamic civilization is based on a unity which stands completely against any racial or ethnic discrimination. Such major racial and ethnic groups as the Arabs, Persians, Turks, Africans, Indians, Chinese and Malays in addition to countless smaller units embraced Islam and contributed to the building of Islamic civilization.

    Moreover, so the story goes, Islam was not opposed to learning from the earlier civilizations and incorporating their science, learning, and culture into its own world view. Each ethnic and racial group that embraced Islam made its contribution to the one Islamic civilization to which everyone belonged.

    The global civilization created by Islam also succeeded in activating the minds and thoughts of the people who entered its fold. As a result of Islam, the nomadic Arabs became torch-bearers of science and learning. The Persians, who had created a great civilization before the rise of Islam, nevertheless produced even more science and learning in the Islamic period than before. The same can be said of the Turks and other peoples who embraced Islam. The religion of Islam was itself responsible not only for the creation of a world civilization in which people of many different ethnic backgrounds participated, but it also played a central role in developing intellectual and cultural life on a scale not seen before.

    Quite a story. And it is a story being fed to US students from k-12 on through graduate schools. Quite a story? More like a fairy tale.

    Victor Davis Hanson has taken down Obama’s version of the Golden age of Islam:

    In his speech last week in Cairo, President Obama proclaimed he was a “student of history.” But despite Mr. Obama’s image as an Ivy League-educated intellectual, he lacks historical competency in both facts and interpretation. … Obama … claimed that “Islam . . . carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe’s Renaissance and Enlightenment.” [In fact] medieval Islamic culture … had little to do with the European rediscovery of classical Greek and Latin values. Europeans, Chinese, and Hindus, not Muslims, invented most of the breakthroughs Obama credited to Islamic innovation. … Much of the Renaissance, in fact, was more predicated on the centuries-long flight of Greek-speaking Byzantine scholars from Constantinople to Western Europe to escape the aggression of Islamic Turks. Many romantic thinkers of the Enlightenment sought to extend freedom to oppressed subjects of Muslim fundamentalist rule in eastern and southern Europe.

    Andrew Bostom has skewered the myth that Cordoba was a model of ecumenism:

    Expanding upon Jane Gerber’s thesis about the “garish” myth of a “Golden Age,” the late Richard Fletcher (in his Moorish Spain) offered a fair assessment of interfaith relationships in Muslim Spain and his view of additional contemporary currents responsible for obfuscating that history:

    The witness of those who lived through the horrors of the Berber conquest, of the Andalusian fitnah [ordeal] in the early eleventh century, of the Almoravid invasion — to mention only a few disruptive episodes — must give it [i.e.: the roseate view of Muslim Spain] the lie.

    The simple and verifiable historical truth is that Moorish Spain was more often a land of turmoil than it was of tranquility. … Tolerance? Ask the Jews of Granada who were massacred in 1066, or the Christians who were deported by the Almoravids to Morocco in 1126 (like the Moriscos five centuries later). … In the second half of the twentieth century a new agent of obfuscation makes its appearance: the guilt of the liberal conscience, which sees the evils of colonialism — assumed rather than demonstrated — foreshadowed in the Christian conquest of al-Andalus and the persecution of the Moriscos (but not, oddly, in the Moorish conquest and colonization). Stir the mix well and issue it free to credulous academics and media persons throughout the Western world. Then pour it generously over the truth … in the cultural conditions that prevail in the West today, the past has to be marketed, and to be successfully marketed, it has to be attractively packaged. Medieval Spain in a state of nature lacks wide appeal. Self-indulgent fantasies of glamour … do wonders for sharpening its image. But Moorish Spain was not a tolerant and enlightened society even in its most cultivated epoch.

    Serge Trifkovic also has a general take-down of the overblown account of the accomplishments and comity of the Islamic Golden Age in his FrontPage article, The Golden Age of Islam is a Myth.

    And now we have Emmet Scott, in a soon to be released study, Mohammed & Charlemagne Revisited: An Introduction to the History of a Controversy, advancing the thesis that Rather than preserving the Classical heritage, the expanding Islamic empire destroyed it and brought about the Dark Ages.

    Armed with new archaeological evidence, Scott makes the compelling case, originally put forward in 1920 by Henri Pirenne, a Belgian historian, that Classical civilization did not collapse after the fall of the Roman empire but was gradually attrited by the onslaught of Arab armies and raiders. The Islamic Golden Age came close to permanently destroying the classical humanistic culture of the West.

    Hanson has pointed out the factual errors in Obama’s paean to Islam’s Golden Age. Andrew Bostom has skewered the myth that Cordoba was a model of ecumenism Trikovic has shown that the continuation of learning, science, technology of the “Golden age of Islam” prospered in spite of Islam and not because of Islam and now we have Emmet Scott skewering the myth that the Golden Age of Islam saved Classical humanistic Western culture. What is next? The glory of Sharia?

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