What was the number of native casualties in the Muslim invasion of Hispania?

What was the number of native casualties in the Muslim invasion of Hispania?

Where can I find information about the number of casualties amongst native peoples produced by the Muslim invasion of Visigothic Hispania?

Strangely, it's very easy to get an estimate of the number of casualties in most other wars and genocides, including some much older ones that happened in America or Greece, but no information about the invasion of Hispania, just some sparse data on some battles and sieges.


Assyria (A Cross in the Middle East)

Assyria, officially the Kingdom of Assyria, is a sovereign state located in the Middle East. It borders Georgia and Armenia to the north, Iran to the east, Turkey to the west, Egypt to the southwest and Saudi Arabia and Hejaz to the south. Its capital is Assur and its largest city is the Thrice Holy City of Jerusalem.

The Kingdom of Assyria and its people trace their descent to the ancient Assyrians, who founded three powerful empires in the region - the Old (2025-1378 BC), Middle (1392-934) and Neo (911-609 BC) Assyrian Empires. They all in turn trace descent to the city state of Assur, current capital of the kingdom, which was founded in 2500 BC. The city, and from its people and nation, are all named after the ancient Mesopotamian deity Assur (or Ashur, depends on the spelling), which the people worshipped and took their name from. This ancient state ceased to exist after it was conquered by the ancient Babylonan and Persian empires.

No Assyrian state existed between 609 BC and 1163, although its people survived and kept on being the bulk of the population of northern Mesopotamia. They eventually adopted Christianity and most of them kept their faith even in the face of the eventual Muslim invasion into Mesopotamia.

The modern Assyrian state was founded by Ashur (1130-1201), a native Assyrian, who would gather a large following early on and become a powerful local warlord, who protected his people and quickly became popular among the Assyrians. While a Christian and follower of the Church of the East, he rejected both Christian and Muslim rule and sought to reestablish the ancient Assyrian civilization, of which he had heard tales as a child. He mostly kept his campaigns focused on the Seljuks, from which he famously took the ancient city of Assur and later on Edessa, the then center of the Church of the East. The foundation of the kingdom is considered Christmas, 1163, the date that the Patriarch of the Eastern Church crowned Ashur as King of Assyria.

Ashur would ally with the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem and even arrange the betrothal of his heir, Ashurbanipal to the King of Jerusalem's daughter Sybilla, who would eventually succeed her father as king. Following this, the two Christian kingdoms would unite under their heir - Esarhaddon I, who would go on to cause the collapse of the Seljuk empire.

The new Assyrian kingdom would go on to fight a successful war against Egypt and take territory as far west as the Nile and gain full control of Mesopotamia, dividing the Muslim world in three - Iran, Arabia and North Africa. To the north, Assyria would successfully defend itself against the attacks of Timur from Persia and prevent the Ottoman Empire from spreading beyond Anatolia.

Regardless of its pro-Christian politics, the Kings of Assyria since Sargon II (1446-1506) would allow free access to the various Christian, Muslim and Jewish holy cites in Jerusalem. He would even be responsible for the resettlement of the Levant with Jews after they were expelled from Spain. Queen Saritrah II would aide in the exodus of countless Jews, fleeing Nazi Germany's persecution.

The current king is Ashurbanipal VII, who is the head of state. Although it is a constitutional monarchy, the king retains a great amount of influence in both society and politics. The Prime minister, who is the head of government, is Yonadam Kanna.

Assyria is a developed country with a strong economy, ranking 4th in the world by nominal GDP and 5th by PPP. It ranks consistently high on the human development index. It is also a regional power and a member of several international organizations like the United Nations, OPEC, World Bank, NATO, etc.


The invasion of Iraq by the United States and coalition forces in March 2003 saw the beginning of the Iraq War, a conflict that would continue beyond the end of the decade. Fatalities of American forces were highest in the first five years of conflict as soldiers grappled with the Al Qaeda as well as civil war between those groups seeking to fill the power vacuum left by the removal of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. Casualties progressively decreased from 2008, in part due to attempts by Barack Obama who made the removal of troops from Iraq a central promise of this successful campaign to succeed George W. Bush. In 2013, the majority of Americans considered sending troops to fight in Iraq to be a mistake.

While the number of civilian deaths in the Iraq War was much higher, the trend of numbers decreasing from 2008 onward was in line with the trend for American solider losses. However, civilian deaths rose again from 2013 onward as Iraq returned to heavy conflict with Islamic State.

The high number of American fatalities in the first five years of the Iraq War could be seen as influencing the reluctance of the United States to commit ground troop support in the battle against Islamic State when the issue was discussed in 2015. Not only is the loss of life a tragedy in itself, but the political discourse in the United States surrounding the involvement of their troops in Middle Eastern conflicts has made further involvement unattractive to elected officials. However calls for further ground support are likely to continue as Iraq remained in the top five countries with the most terrorist attacks as of 2019.


Ashli Babbitt, 35

Babbitt, a 14-year air force veteran from San Diego, was among a group of people who could be seen attempting to break down the doors of the US Senate chamber as members sheltered. Cameras captured the moment she was rushed out on a stretcher after being shot by a Capitol police officer. She died at the hospital.

“I really don’t know why she decided to do this,” Babbitt’s mother-in-law told Washington’s WTTG.

Just a day before the rally, Babbitt tweeted the QAnon conspiracy called “the storm”, in which supporters believe Donald Trump will emerge to overthrow and execute corrupt political elites and enemies.


India's secret history: ɺ holocaust, one where millions disappeared. '

The battle of Cawnpore - the entire British garrison died at Cawnpore (now Kanpur), either in the battle or later massacred with women and children. Their deaths became a war cry for the British. Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty

The battle of Cawnpore - the entire British garrison died at Cawnpore (now Kanpur), either in the battle or later massacred with women and children. Their deaths became a war cry for the British. Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty

A controversial new history of the Indian Mutiny, which broke out 150 years ago and is acknowledged to have been the greatest challenge to any European power in the 19th century, claims that the British pursued a murderous decade-long campaign to wipe out millions of people who dared rise up against them.

In War of Civilisations: India AD 1857, Amaresh Misra, a writer and historian based in Mumbai, argues that there was an "untold holocaust" which caused the deaths of almost 10 million people over 10 years beginning in 1857. Britain was then the world's superpower but, says Misra, came perilously close to losing its most prized possession: India.

Conventional histories have counted only 100,000 Indian soldiers who were slaughtered in savage reprisals, but none have tallied the number of rebels and civilians killed by British forces desperate to impose order, claims Misra.

The author says he was surprised to find that the "balance book of history" could not say how many Indians were killed in the aftermath of 1857. This is remarkable, he says, given that in an age of empires, nothing less than the fate of the world hung in the balance.

"It was a holocaust, one where millions disappeared. It was a necessary holocaust in the British view because they thought the only way to win was to destroy entire populations in towns and villages. It was simple and brutal. Indians who stood in their way were killed. But its scale has been kept a secret," Misra told the Guardian.

His calculations rest on three principal sources. Two are records pertaining to the number of religious resistance fighters killed - either Islamic mujahideen or Hindu warrior ascetics committed to driving out the British.

The third source involves British labour force records, which show a drop in manpower of between a fifth and a third across vast swaths of India, which as one British official records was "on account of the undisputed display of British power, necessary during those terrible and wretched days - millions of wretches seemed to have died."

There is a macabre undercurrent in much of the correspondence. In one incident Misra recounts how 2m letters lay unopened in government warehouses, which, according to civil servants, showed "the kind of vengeance our boys must have wreaked on the abject Hindoos and Mohammadens, who killed our women and children."

Misra's casualty claims have been challenged in India and Britain. "It is very difficult to assess the extent of the reprisals simply because we cannot say for sure if some of these populations did not just leave a conflict zone rather than being killed," said Shabi Ahmad, head of the 1857 project at the Indian Council of Historical Research. "It could have been migration rather than murder that depopulated areas."

Many view exaggeration rather than deceit in Misra's calculations. A British historian, Saul David, author of The Indian Mutiny, said it was valid to count the death toll but reckoned that it ran into "hundreds of thousands".

"It looks like an overestimate. There were definitely famines that cost millions of lives, which were exacerbated by British ruthlessness. You don't need these figures or talk of holocausts to hammer imperialism. It has a pretty bad track record."

Others say Misra has done well to unearth anything in that period, when the British assiduously snuffed out Indian versions of history. "There appears a prolonged silence between 1860 and the end of the century where no native voices are heard. It is only now that these stories are being found and there is another side to the story," said Amar Farooqui, history professor at Delhi University. "In many ways books like Misra's and those of [William] Dalrymple show there is lots of material around. But you have to look for it."

What is not in doubt is that in 1857 Britain ruled much of the subcontinent in the name of the Bahadur Shah Zafar, the powerless poet-king improbably descended from Genghis Khan.

Neither is there much dispute over how events began: on May 10 Indian soldiers, both Muslim and Hindu, who were stationed in the central Indian town of Meerut revolted and killed their British officers before marching south to Delhi. The rebels proclaimed Zafar, then 82, emperor of Hindustan and hoisted a saffron flag above the Red Fort.

What follows in Misra's view was nothing short of the first war of Indian independence, a story of a people rising to throw off the imperial yoke. Critics say the intentions and motives were more muddled: a few sepoys misled into thinking the officers were threatening their religious traditions. In the end British rule prevailed for another 90 years.

Misra's analysis breaks new ground by claiming the fighting stretched across India rather than accepting it was localised around northern India. Misra says there were outbreaks of anti-British violence in southern Tamil Nadu, near the Himalayas, and bordering Burma. "It was a pan-Indian thing. No doubt."

Misra also claims that the uprisings did not die out until years after the original mutiny had fizzled away, countering the widely held view that the recapture of Delhi was the last important battle.

For many the fact that Indian historians debate 1857 from all angles is in itself a sign of a historical maturity. "You have to see this in the context of a new, more confident India," said Jon E Wilson, lecturer in south Asian history at King's College London. "India has a new relationship with 1857. In the 40s and 50s the rebellions were seen as an embarrassment. All that fighting, when Nehru and Gandhi preached nonviolence. But today 1857 is becoming part of the Indian national story. That is a big change."

Charles Dickens: "I wish I were commander-in-chief in India . I should proclaim to them that I considered my holding that appointment by the leave of God, to mean that I should do my utmost to exterminate the race."

Karl Marx: "The question is not whether the English had a right to conquer India, but whether we are to prefer India conquered by the Turk, by the Persian, by the Russian, to India conquered by the Briton."

L'Estaffette, French newspaper: "Intervene in favour of the Indians, launch all our squadrons on the seas, join our efforts with those of Russia against British India . such is the only policy truly worthy of the glorious traditions of France."

The Guardian: "We sincerely hope that the terrible lesson thus taught will never be forgotten . We may rely on native bayonets, but they must be officered by Europeans."


Contents

Narrow ethnic definition Edit

In the narrower ethnic definition, a Sephardi Jew is a Jew descended from the Jews who lived in the Iberian Peninsula in the late 15th century, immediately prior to the issuance of the Alhambra Decree of 1492 by order of the Catholic Monarchs in Spain, and the decree of 1496 in Portugal by order of King Manuel I.

Ethnic Sephardic Jews have had a presence in North Africa and various parts of the Mediterranean and Western Asia due to their expulsion from Spain. There have also been Sephardic communities in South America and India.

Broad religious definition Edit

The modern Israeli Hebrew definition of Sephardi is a much broader, religious based, definition that generally excludes ethnic considerations. In its most basic form, this broad religious definition of a Sephardi refers to any Jew, of any ethnic background, who follows the customs and traditions of Sepharad. For religious purposes, and in modern Israel, "Sephardim" is most often used in this wider sense. It encompasses most non-Ashkenazi Jews who are not ethnically Sephardi, but are in most instances of West Asian or North African origin. They are classified as Sephardi because they commonly use a Sephardic style of liturgy this constitutes a majority of Mizrahi Jews in the 21st century.

The term Sephardi in the broad sense, describes the nusach (Hebrew language, "liturgical tradition") used by Sephardi Jews in their Siddur (prayer book). A nusach is defined by a liturgical tradition's choice of prayers, order of prayers, text of prayers and melodies used in the singing of prayers. Sephardim traditionally pray using Minhag Sefarad.

The term Nusach Sefard or Nusach Sfarad does not refer to the liturgy generally recited by Sephardim proper or even Sephardi in a broader sense, but rather to an alternative Eastern European liturgy used by many Hasidim, who are Ashkenazi.

Additionally, Ethiopian Jews, whose branch of practiced Judaism is known as Haymanot, have been included under the oversight of Israel's already broad Sephardic Chief Rabbinate.

The divisions among Sephardim and their descendants today are largely a result of the consequences of the royal edicts of expulsion. Both the Spanish and Portuguese edicts ordered their respective Jewish residents to choose one of three options:

  1. to convert to Catholicism and be allowed to remain within the kingdom,
  2. to remain Jewish and be expelled by the stipulated deadline, or
  3. to stay and be summarily executed as Jews.

In the case of the Alhambra Decree of 1492, the primary purpose was to eliminate Jewish influence on Spain's large converso population, and ensure they did not revert to Judaism. Over half of Spain's Jews had converted in the 14th century as a result of the religious persecution and pogroms which occurred in 1391. They and their Catholic descendants were not subject to the Decree or to expulsion, yet were surveilled by the Spanish Inquisition. British scholar Henry Kamen has said that

"the real purpose of the 1492 edict likely was not expulsion, but compulsory conversion and assimilation of all Spanish Jews, a process which had been underway for a number of centuries. Indeed, a further number of those Jews who had not yet joined the converso community finally chose to convert and avoid expulsion as a result of the edict. As a result of the Alhambra decree and persecution during the prior century, between 200,000 and 250,000 Jews converted to Catholicism and between one third and one half of Spain's remaining 100,000 non-converted Jews chose exile, with an indeterminate number returning to Spain in the years following the expulsion." [11]

Foreseeing a negative economic effect of a similar Jewish flight from Portugal, King Manuel issued his decree four years later largely to appease a precondition that the Spanish monarchs had set for him in order to allow him to marry their daughter. While the stipulations were similar in the Portuguese decree, King Manuel largely prevented Portugal's Jews from leaving, by blocking Portugal's ports of exit. He decided that the Jews who stayed accepted Catholicism by default, proclaiming them New Christians. Physical forced conversions, however, were also suffered by Jews throughout Portugal.

Sephardi Jews encompass Jews descended from those Jews who left the Iberian Peninsula as Jews by the expiration of the respective decreed deadlines. This group is further divided between those who fled south to North Africa, as opposed to those who fled eastwards to the Balkans, West Asia and beyond. Others fled east into Europe, with many settling in northern Italy. Also included among Sephardi Jews are those who descend from "New Christian" conversos, but returned to Judaism after leaving Iberia, largely after reaching Southern and Western Europe. [ citation needed ]

From these regions, many late migrated again, this time to the non-Iberian territories of the Americas. Additional to all these Sephardic Jewish groups are the descendants of those New Christian conversos who either remained in Iberia, or moved from Iberia directly to the Iberian colonial possessions in what are today the various Latin American countries. For historical reasons and circumstances, most of the descendants of this group of conversos never formally returned to the Jewish religion.

All these sub-groups are defined by a combination of geography, identity, religious evolution, language evolution, and the timeframe of their reversion (for those who had in the interim undergone a temporary nominal conversion to Catholicism) or non-reversion back to Judaism.

These Sephardic sub-groups are separate from any pre-existing local Jewish communities they encountered in their new areas of settlement. From the perspective of the present day, the first three sub-groups appeared to have developed as separate branches, each with its own traditions.

In earlier centuries, and as late as the editing of the Jewish Encyclopedia at the beginning of the 20th century, the Sephardim were usually regarded as together forming a continuum. The Jewish community of Livorno, Italy acted as the clearing-house of personnel and traditions among the first three sub-groups it also developed as the chief publishing centre. [ improper synthesis? ]

Eastern Sephardim Edit

Eastern Sephardim comprise the descendants of the expellees from Spain who left as Jews in 1492 or prior. This sub-group of Sephardim settled mostly in various parts of the Ottoman Empire, which included areas in the Near East (West Asia's Middle East such as Anatolia, the Levant and Egypt), and the Balkans in Southeastern Europe. They settled particularly in European cities ruled by the Ottoman Empire, including Salonica in what is today Greece Constantinople, which today is known as Istanbul on the European portion of modern Turkey and Sarajevo, in what is today Bosnia and Herzegovina. Sephardic Jews also lived in Bulgaria, where they absorbed into their community the Romaniote Jews they found already living there. They had a presence as well in Walachia in what is today southern Romania, where there is still a functioning Sephardic Synagogue. [12] Their traditional language is referred to as Judezmo ("Jewish [language]"). It is Judaeo-Spanish, sometimes also known as Ladino, which consisted of the medieval Spanish and Portuguese they spoke in Iberia, with admixtures of Hebrew, and the languages around them, especially Turkish. This Judeo-Spanish language was often written in Rashi script.

Some Sephardim went further east to West Asian territories of the Ottoman Empire, settling among the long-established Arabic-speaking Jewish communities in Damascus and Aleppo in Syria, as well as in the Land of Israel, and as far as Baghdad in Iraq. Although technically Egypt was a North African Ottoman region, those Jews who settled Alexandria are included in this group, due to Egypt's cultural proximity to the West Asian provinces.

For the most part, Eastern Sephardim did not maintain their own separate Sephardic religious and cultural institutions from pre-existing Jews. Instead the local Jews came to adopt the liturgical customs of the recent Sephardic arrivals.

Additionally, Eastern Sephardim in European areas of the Ottoman Empire retained their culture and language. Those in the West Asian portion gave up their language and adopted the local Judeo-Arabic dialect. This latter phenomenon is just one of the factors which have today led to the broader religious definition of Sephardi.

Thus, the Jewish communities in Lebanon, Syria, and Egypt are part of Spanish Jewish origin and they are counted as Sephardim proper. The great majority of the Jewish communities in Iraq, and all of those in Iran, Eastern Syria, Yemen, and Eastern Turkey, are descendants of pre-existing indigenous Jewish populations. They adopted Sephardic rite and traditions through cultural diffusion, and are properly termed Mizrahi Jews. [ citation needed ]

Modern DNA research has affirmed these classifications. For instance, Syrian Jews, while clustering within the various world Jewish groups (where most Jewish groups cluster closely together at large compared to non-Jews), are most closely related to the Sephardim proper counterparts in other regions of Sephardic settlement, rather than to the Mizrahi Jews who are geographically closest to them. [ citation needed ]

A few of the Eastern Sephardim followed the spice trade routes as far as the Malabar coast of southern India, where they settled among the established Cochin Jewish community. Their culture and customs were absorbed by the local Jews. [ citation needed ] . Additionally, there was a large community of Jews and crypto-Jews of Portuguese origin in the Portuguese colony of Goa. Gaspar Jorge de Leão Pereira, the first archbishop of Goa, wanted to suppress or expel that community, calling for the initiation of the Goa Inquisition against the Sephardic Jews in India.

In recent times, principally after 1948, most Eastern Sephardim have since relocated to Israel, and others to the US and Latin America.

Eastern Sephardim still often carry common Spanish surnames, as well as other specifically Sephardic surnames from 15th-century Spain with Arabic or Hebrew language origins (such as Azoulay, Abulafia, Abravanel) which have since disappeared from Spain when those that stayed behind as conversos adopted surnames that were solely Spanish in origin. Other Eastern Sephardim have since also translated their Hispanic surnames into the languages of the regions they settled in, or have modified them to sound more local.

North African Sephardim Edit

North African Sephardim consists of the descendants of the expellees from Spain who also left as Jews in 1492. This branch settled in North Africa (except Egypt, see Eastern Sephardim above). Settling mostly in Morocco and Algeria, they spoke a variant of Judaeo-Spanish known as Haketia. They also spoke Judeo-Arabic in a majority of cases. They settled in the areas with already established Arabic-speaking Jewish communities in North Africa and eventually merged with them to form new communities based solely on Sephardic customs. [ citation needed ]

Several of the Moroccan Jews emigrated back to the Iberian Peninsula to form the core of the Gibraltar Jews. [ citation needed ]

In the 19th century, modern Spanish, French and Italian gradually replaced Haketia and Judeo-Arabic as the mother tongue among most Moroccan Sephardim and other North African Sephardim. [13]

In recent times, with the Jewish exodus from Arab and Muslim countries, principally after the creation of Israel in 1948, most North African Sephardim have relocated to Israel (total pop. est. 1,400,000 in 2015), and most others to France (361,000) and the US (300,000), as well as other countries. As of 2015 there was a significant community still in Morocco (10,000). [14]

North African Sephardim still also often carry common Spanish surnames, as well as other specifically Sephardic surnames from 15th century Spain with Arabic or Hebrew language origins (such as Azoulay, Abulafia, Abravanel) which have since disappeared from Spain when those that stayed behind as conversos adopted surnames that were solely Spanish in origin. Other North African Sephardim have since also translated their Hispanic surnames into local languages or have modified them to sound local. [ citation needed ]

Western Sephardim Edit

Western Sephardim (also known more ambiguously as "Spanish and Portuguese Jews", "Spanish Jews", "Portuguese Jews" and "Jews of the Portuguese Nation") are the community of Jewish ex-conversos whose families initially remained in Spain and Portugal as ostensible New Christians, that is, as Anusim or "forced [converts]". Western Sephardim are further sub-divided into an Old World branch and a New World branch.

Henry Kamen and Joseph Perez estimate that of the total Jewish origin population of Spain at the time of the issuance of the Alhambra Decree, those who chose to remain in Spain represented the majority, up to 300,000 of a total Jewish origin population of 350,000. Furthermore, a significant number returned to Spain in the years following the expulsion, on condition of converting to Catholicism, the Crown guaranteeing they could recover their property at the same price at which it was sold.

Discrimination against this large community of conversos nevertheless remained, and those who secretly practiced the Jewish faith specifically suffered severe episodes of persecution by the Inquisition. The last episode of persecution occurred in the mid-18th century. External migrations out of the Iberian peninsula coincided with these episodes of increased persecution by the Inquisition.

As a result of this discrimination and persecution, a small number of marranos (conversos who secretly practiced Judaism) later emigrated to more religiously tolerant Old World countries outside the Iberian cultural sphere such as the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, England. [ citation needed ] In these lands conversos reverted to Judaism, rejoining the Jewish community sometimes up to the third or even fourth generations after the initial decrees stipulating conversion, expulsion, or death. It is these returnees to Judaism that represent Old World Western Sephardim.

New World Western Sephardim, on the other hand, are the descendants of those Jewish-origin New Christian conversos who accompanied the millions of Old Christian Spaniards and Portuguese that emigrated to the Americas. More specifically, New World Western Sephardim are that Western Sephardim whose converso ancestors migrated to various of the non-Iberian colonies in the Americas in whose jurisdictions they could return to Judaism.

New World Western Sephardim are juxtaposed to yet another group of descendants of conversos who settled in the Iberian colonies of the Americas who could not revert to Judaism. These comprise the related but distinct group known as Sephardic Bnei Anusim (see the section below).

Due to the presence of the Spanish and Portuguese Inquisition in the Iberian American territories, initially, converso immigration was barred throughout much of Ibero-America. Because of this, very few converso immigrants in Iberian American colonies ever reverted to Judaism. Of those conversos in the New World who did return to Judaism, it was principally those who had come via an initial respite of refuge in the Netherlands and/or who were settling the New World Dutch colonies such as Curaçao and the area then known as New Holland (also called Dutch Brazil). Dutch Brazil was the northern portion of the colony of Brazil ruled by the Dutch for under a quarter of a century before it also fell to the Portuguese who ruled the remainder of Brazil. Jews who had only recently reverted in Dutch Brazil then again had to flee to other Dutch-ruled colonies in the Americas, including joining brethren in Curaçao, but also migrating to New Amsterdam, in what is today New York.

All of the oldest congregations in the non-Iberian colonial possessions in the Americas were founded by Western Sephardim, many who arrived in the then Dutch-ruled New Amsterdam, with their synagogues being in the tradition of "Spanish and Portuguese Jews".

In the United States in particular, Congregation Shearith Israel, established in 1654, in today's New York City, is the oldest Jewish congregation in the United States. Its present building dates from 1897. Congregation Jeshuat Israel in Newport, Rhode Island, is dated to sometime after the arrival there of Western Sephardim in 1658 and prior to the 1677 purchase of a communal cemetery, now known as Touro Cemetery. See also List of the oldest synagogues in the United States.

The intermittent period of residence in Portugal (after the initial fleeing from Spain) for the ancestors of many Western Sephardim (whether Old World or New World) is a reason why the surnames of many Western Sephardim tend to be Portuguese variations of common Spanish surnames, though some are still Spanish.

Among a few notable figures with roots in Western Sephardim are the current president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, and former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Benjamin N. Cardozo. Both descend from Western Sephardim who left Portugal for the Netherlands, and in the case of Nicolás Maduro, from the Netherlands to Curaçao, and ultimately Venezuela.

Sephardic Bnei Anusim Edit

The Sephardic Bnei Anusim consists of the contemporary and largely nominal Christian descendants of assimilated 15th century Sephardic anusim. These descendants of Spanish and Portuguese Jews forced or coerced to convert to Catholicism remained, as conversos, in Iberia or moved to the Iberian colonial possessions across various Latin American countries during the Spanish colonization of the Americas.

Due to historical reasons and circumstances, Sephardic Bnei Anusim had not been able to return to the Jewish faith over the last five centuries, [15] although increasing numbers have begun emerging publicly in modern times, especially over the last two decades. Except for varying degrees of putatively rudimentary Jewish customs and traditions which had been retained as family traditions among individual families, Sephardic Bnei Anusim became a fully assimilated sub-group within the Iberian-descended Christian populations of Spain, Portugal, Hispanic America and Brazil. In the last 5 to 10 years, however, "organized groups of [Sephardic] Benei Anusim in Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Dominican Republic and in Sefarad [Iberia] itself" [16] have now been established, some of whose members have formally reverted to Judaism, leading to the emergence of Neo-Western Sephardim (see group below).

The Jewish Agency for Israel estimates the Sephardic Bnei Anusim population to number in the millions. [17] Their population size is several times larger than the three Jewish-integrated Sephardi descendant sub-groups combined, consisting of Eastern Sephardim, North African Sephardim, and the ex-converso Western Sephardim (both New World and Old World branches).

Although numerically superior, Sephardic Bnei Anusim is, however, the least prominent or known sub-group of Sephardi descendants. Sephardic Bnei Anusim are also more than twice the size of the total world Jewish population as a whole, which itself also encompasses Ashkenazi Jews, Mizrahi Jews and various other smaller groups.

Unlike the Anusim ("forced [converts]") who were the conversos up to the third, fourth or fifth generation (depending on the Jewish responsa) who later reverted to Judaism, the Bnei Anusim ("[later] sons/children/descendants [of the] forced [converts]") were the subsequent generations of descendants of the Anusim who remained hidden ever since the Inquisition in the Iberian Peninsula and its New World franchises. At least some Sephardic Anusim in the Hispanosphere (in Iberia, but especially in their colonies in Ibero-America) had also initially tried to revert to Judaism, or at least maintain crypto-Jewish practices in privacy. This, however, was not feasible long-term in that environment, as Judaizing conversos in Iberia and Ibero-America remained persecuted, prosecuted, and liable to conviction and execution. The Inquisition itself was only finally formally disbanded in the 19th century.

Historical documentation shedding new light on the diversity in the ethnic composition of the Iberian immigrants to the Spanish colonies of the Americas during the conquest era suggests that the number of New Christians of Sephardi origin that actively participated in the conquest and settlement was more significant than previously estimated. A number of Spanish conquerors, administrators, settlers, have now been confirmed to have been of Sephardi origin. [ citation needed ] Recent revelations have only come about as a result of modern DNA evidence and newly discovered records in Spain, which had been either lost or hidden, relating to conversions, marriages, baptisms, and Inquisition trials of the parents, grandparents and great grandparents of the Sephardi-origin Iberian immigrants.

Overall, it is now estimated that up to 20% of modern-day Spaniards and 10% of colonial Latin America's Iberian settlers may have been of Sephardic origin, although the regional distribution of their settlement was uneven throughout the colonies. Thus, Iberian settlers of New Christian Sephardi-origin ranged anywhere from none in most areas to as high as 1 in every 3 (approx. 30%) Iberian settlers in other areas. With Latin America's current population standing at close to 590 million people, the bulk of which consists of persons of full or partial Iberian ancestry (both New World Hispanics and Brazilians, whether they're criollos, mestizos or mulattos), it is estimated that up to 50 million of these possess Sephardic Jewish ancestry to some degree.

In Iberia, settlements of known and attested populations of Bnei Anusim include those in Belmonte, in Portugal, and the Xuetes of Palma de Mallorca, in Spain. In 2011 Rabbi Nissim Karelitz, a leading rabbi and Halachic authority and chairman of the Beit Din Tzedek rabbinical court in Bnei Brak, Israel, recognized the entire Xuete community of Bnei Anusim in Palma de Mallorca, as Jews. [18] That population alone represented approximately 18,000 people, or just over 2% of the entire population of the island. The proclamation of the Jews' default acceptance of Catholicism by the Portuguese king actually resulted in a high percentage being assimilated into the Portuguese population. Besides the Xuetas, the same is true of Spain.

Almost all Sephardic Bnei Anusim carry surnames which are known to have been used by Sephardim during the 15th century, however, per se, almost all of these surnames are not specifically Sephardic, and are in fact mostly surnames of gentile Spanish or gentile Portuguese origin which only became common among Bnei Anusim because they deliberately adopted them during their conversions in an attempt to obscure their Jewish pedigrees. Very few Sephardic Bnei Anusim carry surnames that are specifically Sephardic in origin, or that are specifically found only among Bnei Anim.

Pre-1492 Edit

Prior to 1492, substantial Jewish populations existed in most Spanish and Portuguese provinces. Among the larger Jewish populations in actual numbers were the Jewish communities in cities like Lisbon, Toledo, Córdoba, Seville, Málaga and Granada. In these cities, however, Jews constituted only substantial minorities of the overall population. In several smaller towns, however, Jews composed majorities or pluralities, as the towns were founded or inhabited principally by Jews. Among these towns were Ocaña, Guadalajara, Buitrago del Lozoya, Lucena, Ribadavia, Hervás, Llerena, and Almazán.

The first Jews to leave Spain settled in what is today Algeria after the various persecutions that took place in 1391.

Post-1492 Edit

The Alhambra Decree (also known as the Edict of Expulsion) was an edict issued on 31 March 1492, by the joint Catholic Monarchs of Spain (Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon) ordering the expulsion of practicing Jews from the Kingdoms of Castile and Aragon and its territories and possessions by 31 July, of that year. [19] The primary purpose was to eliminate their influence on Spain's large converso population and ensure they did not revert to Judaism. Over half of Spain's Jews had converted as a result of the religious persecution and pogroms which occurred in 1391, and as such were not subject to the Decree or to expulsion. A further number of those remaining chose to avoid expulsion as a result of the edict. As a result of the Alhambra decree and persecution in prior years, over 200,000 Jews converted to Catholicism, and between 40,000 and 100,000 were expelled, an indeterminate number returning to Spain in the years following the expulsion. [20]

The Spanish Jews who chose to leave Spain instead of converting dispersed throughout the region of North Africa known as the Maghreb. In those regions, they often intermingled with the already existing Mizrahi Arabic-speaking communities, becoming the ancestors of the Moroccan, Algerian, Tunisian, and Libyan Jewish communities.

Many Spanish Jews also fled to the Ottoman Empire, where they were given refuge. Sultan Bayezid II of the Ottoman Empire, learning about the expulsion of Jews from Spain, dispatched the Ottoman Navy to bring the Jews safely to Ottoman lands, mainly to the cities of Salonika (currently Thessaloniki, now in Greece) and Smyrna (now known in English as İzmir, currently in Turkey). [21] Some believe that Persian Jewry (Iranian Jews), as the only community of Jews living under the Shiites, probably suffered more than any Sephardic community (Persian Jews are not [22] Sephardic in descent [23] [24] ). [25] Many of these Jews also settled in other parts of the Balkans ruled by the Ottomans such as the areas that are now Bulgaria, Serbia, and Bosnia.

Throughout history, scholars have given widely differing numbers of Jews expelled from Spain. However, the figure is likely preferred by minimalist scholars to be below the 100,000 Jews - while others suggest larger numbers - who had not yet converted to Christianity by 1492, possibly as low as 40,000 and as high as 200,000 (while Don Isaac Abarbanel stated he led 300,000 Jews out of Spain) dubbed "Megurashim" ("Expelled Ones", in contrast to the local Jews they met whom they called "Toshavim" - "Citizens") in the Hebrew they had spoke. [26] Many went to Portugal, gaining only a few years of respite from persecution. The Jewish community in Portugal (perhaps then some 10% of that country's population) [27] were then declared Christians by Royal decree unless they left.

Such figures exclude the significant number of Jews who returned to Spain due to the hostile reception they received in their countries of refuge, notably Fez. The situation of returnees was legalized with the Ordinance of 10 November 1492 which established that civil and church authorities should be witness to baptism and, in the case that they were baptized before arrival, proof and witnesses of baptism were required. Furthermore, all property could be recovered by returnees at the same price at which it was sold. Returnees are documented as late as 1499. On the other hand, the Provision of the Royal Council of 24 October 1493 set harsh sanctions for those who slandered these New Christians with insulting terms such as tornados. [28]

As a result of the more recent Jewish exodus from Arab lands, many of the Sephardim Tehorim from Western Asia and North Africa relocated to either Israel or France, where they form a significant portion of the Jewish communities today. Other significant communities of Sephardim Tehorim also migrated in more recent times from the Near East to New York City, Argentina, Costa Rica, Mexico, Montreal, Gibraltar, Puerto Rico, and Dominican Republic. [29] Because of poverty and turmoil in Latin America, another wave of Sephardic Jews joined other Latin Americans who migrated to the United States, Canada, Spain, and other countries of Europe.

Permanence of Sephardim in Spain Edit

According to the genetic study "The Genetic Legacy of Religious Diversity and Intolerance: Paternal Lineages of Christians, Jews, and Muslims in the Iberian Peninsula" at the University Pompeu Fabra of Barcelona and the University of Leicester, led by Briton Mark Jobling, Francesc Calafell, and Elena Bosch, published by the American Journal of Human Genetics, genetic markers show that nearly 20% of Spaniards have Sephardic Jewish markers (direct male descent male for Y, equivalent weight for female mitochondria) residents of Catalonia have approximately 6%. This shows that there was historic intermarriage between ethnic Jews and other Spaniards, and essentially, that some Jews remained in Spain. Similarly, the study showed that some 11% of the population has DNA associated with the Moors. [30]

Sephardim in modern Iberia Edit

Today, around 50,000 recognized Jews live in Spain, according to the Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain. [31] [32] The tiny Jewish community in Portugal is estimated between 1,740 and 3,000 people. [33] Although some are of Ashkenazi origin, the majority are Sephardic Jews who returned to Spain after the end of the protectorate over northern Morocco. A community of 600 Sephardic Jews live in Gibraltar. [34]

In 2011 Rabbi Nissim Karelitz, a leading rabbi and Halachic authority and chairman of the Beit Din Tzedek rabbinical court in Bnei Brak, Israel, recognized the entire community of Sephardi descendants in Palma de Mallorca, the Chuetas, as Jewish. [18] They number approximately 18,000 people or just over 2% of the entire population of the island.

Of the Bnei Anusim community in Belmonte, Portugal, some officially returned to Judaism in the 1970s. They opened a synagogue, Bet Eliahu, in 1996. [35] The Belmonte community of Bnei Anusim as a whole, however, have not yet been granted the same recognition as Jews that the Chuetas of Palma de Majorca achieved in 2011.

Spanish citizenship by Iberian Sephardic descent Edit

In 1924, the Dictatorship of Primo de Rivera approved a decree to enable Sephardi Jews to obtain Spanish nationality. Although the deadline was originally the end of 1930, diplomat Ángel Sanz Briz used this decree as the basis for giving Spanish citizenship papers to Hungarian Jews in the Second World War to try to save them from the Nazis.

Today, Spanish nationality law generally requires a period of residency in Spain before citizenship can be applied for. This had long been relaxed from ten to two years for Sephardi Jews, Hispanic Americans, and others with historical ties to Spain. In that context, Sephardi Jews were considered to be the descendants of Spanish Jews who were expelled or fled from the country five centuries ago following the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492. [36]

In 2015 the Government of Spain passed Law 12/2015 of 24 June, whereby Sephardi Jews with a connection to Spain could obtain Spanish nationality by naturalization, without the usual residency requirement. Applicants must provide evidence of their Sephardi origin and some connection with Spain, and pass examinations on the language, government, and culture of Spain. [37]

The Law establishes the right to Spanish nationality of Sephardi Jews with a connection to Spain who apply within three years from 1 October 2015. The law defines Sephardic as Jews who lived in the Iberian Peninsula until their expulsion in the late fifteenth century, and their descendants. [38] The law provides for the deadline to be extended by one year, to 1 October 2019 it was extended in March 2018. [39] It was modified in 2015 to remove a provision that required persons acquiring Spanish nationality by law 12/2015 must renounce any other nationality held. [40] Most applicants must pass tests of knowledge of the Spanish language and Spanish culture, but those who are under 18, or handicapped, are exempted. A Resolution in May 2017 also exempted those aged over 70. [41]

The Sephardic citizenship law was set to expire in October 2018 but was extended for an additional year by the Spanish government. [42]

The Law states that Spanish citizenship will be granted to "those Sephardic foreign nationals who prove that [Sephardic] condition and their special relationship with our country, even if they do not have legal residence in Spain, whatever their [current] ideology, religion or beliefs."

Eligibility criteria for proving Sephardic descent include: a certificate issued by the Federation of Jewish Communities of Spain, or the production of a certificate from the competent rabbinic authority, legally recognized in the country of habitual residence of the applicant, or other documentation which might be considered appropriate for this purpose or by justifying one's inclusion as a Sephardic descendant, or a direct descendant of persons included in the list of protected Sephardic families in Spain referred to in the Decree-Law of 29 December 1948, or descendants of those who obtained naturalization by way of the Royal Decree of 20 December 1924 or by the combination of other factors including surnames of the applicant, spoken family language (Spanish, Ladino, Haketia), and other evidence attesting descent from Sephardic Jews and a relationship to Spain. Surnames alone, language alone, or other evidence alone will not be determinative in the granting of Spanish nationality.

The connection with Spain can be established, if kinship with a family on a list of Sephardic families in Spain is not available, by proving that Spanish history or culture have been studied, proof of charitable, cultural, or economic activities associated with Spanish people, or organizations, or Sephardic culture. [37]

The path to Spanish citizenship for Sephardic applicants remained costly and arduous. [43] The Spanish government takes about 8–10 months to decide on each case. [44] By March 2018, some 6,432 people had been granted Spanish citizenship under the law. [42] A total of about 132,000 [45] applications were received, 67,000 of them in the month before the 30 September 2019 deadline. Applications for Portuguese citizenship for Sephardis remained open. [46] The deadline for completing the requirements was extended until September 2021 due to delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but only for those who had made a preliminary application by 1 October 2019. [45]

In what appeared to be a reciprocal gesture, Natan Sharansky, chairman of the quasi-governmental Jewish Agency for Israel, said "the state of Israel must ease the way for their return", referring to the millions of descendants of conversos around Latin America and Iberia. Some hundreds of thousands maybe exploring ways to return to the Jewish people. . [17]

Portuguese citizenship by Portuguese Sephardic descent Edit

In April 2013 Portugal amended its Law on Nationality to confer citizenship to descendants of Portuguese Sephardic Jews who were expelled from the country five centuries ago following the Portuguese Inquisition.

The amended law gave descendants of Portuguese Sephardic Jews the right to become Portuguese citizens, wherever they lived, if they "belong to a Sephardic community of Portuguese origin with ties to Portugal." [47] Portugal thus became the first country after Israel to enact a Jewish Law of Return.

On 29 January 2015, the Portuguese Parliament ratified the legislation offering dual citizenship to descendants of Portuguese Sephardic Jews. Like the law later passed in Spain, the newly established legal rights in Portugal apply to all descendants of Portugal's Sephardic Jews, regardless of the current religion of the descendant, so long as the descendant can demonstrate "a traditional connection" to Portuguese Sephardic Jews. This may be through "family names, family language, and direct or collateral ancestry." [48] Portuguese nationality law was amended to this effect by Decree-Law n.º 43/2013, and further amended by Decree-Law n.º 30-A/2015, which came into effect on 1 March 2015. [49]

In a reciprocal response to the Portuguese legislation, Michael Freund, Chairman of Shavei Israel told news agencies in 2015 that he "call[s] on the Israeli government to embark on a new strategic approach and to reach out to the [Sephardic] Bnei Anousim, people whose Spanish and Portuguese Jewish ancestors were compelled to convert to Catholicism more than five centuries ago." [50]

By July 2017 the Portuguese government had received about 5,000 applications, mostly from Brazil, Israel, and Turkey. 400 had been granted, with a period between application and resolution of about two years. [44] In 2017 a total of 1,800 applicants had been granted Portuguese citizenship. [51] By February 2018, 12,000 applications were in process. [51]

The most typical traditional language of Sephardim is Judeo-Spanish, also called Judezmo or Ladino. It is a Romance language derived mainly from Old Castilian (Spanish), with many borrowings from Turkish, and to a lesser extent from Greek, Arabic, Hebrew, and French. Until recently, two different dialects of Judeo-Spanish were spoken in the Mediterranean region: Eastern Judeo-Spanish (in various distinctive regional variations) and Western or North African Judeo-Spanish (also known as Ḥakitía). The latter was once spoken, with little regional distinction, in six towns in Northern Morocco. Because of later emigration, it was also spoken by Sephardim in Ceuta and Melilla (Spanish cities in North Africa), Gibraltar, Casablanca (Morocco), and Oran (Algeria).

The Eastern Sephardic dialect is typified by its greater conservatism, its retention of numerous Old Spanish features in phonology, morphology, and lexicon, and its numerous borrowings from Turkish and, to a lesser extent, also from Greek and South Slavic. Both dialects have (or had) numerous borrowings from Hebrew, especially in reference to religious matters. But the number of Hebraisms in everyday speech or writing is in no way comparable to that found in Yiddish, the first language for some time among Ashkenazi Jews in Europe.

On the other hand, the North African Sephardic dialect was, until the early 20th century, also highly conservative its abundant Colloquial Arabic loan words retained most of the Arabic phonemes as functional components of a new, enriched Hispano-Semitic phonological system. During the Spanish colonial occupation of Northern Morocco (1912–1956), Ḥakitía was subjected to pervasive, massive influence from Modern Standard Spanish. Most Moroccan Jews now speak a colloquial, Andalusian form of Spanish, with only occasional use of the old language as a sign of in-group solidarity. Similarly, American Jews may now use an occasional Yiddishism in colloquial speech. Except for certain younger individuals, who continue to practice Ḥakitía as a matter of cultural pride, this dialect, probably the most Arabized of the Romance languages apart from Mozarabic, has essentially ceased to exist.

By contrast, Eastern Judeo-Spanish has fared somewhat better, especially in Israel, where newspapers, radio broadcasts, and elementary school and university programs strive to keep the language alive. But the old regional variations (i.e. Bosnia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, and Turkey for instance) are already either extinct or doomed to extinction. Only time will tell whether Judeo-Spanish koiné, now evolving in Israel—similar to that which developed among Sephardic immigrants to the United States early in the 20th century- will prevail and survive into the next generation. [52]

Judæo-Portuguese was used by Sephardim — especially among the Spanish and Portuguese Jews. The pidgin forms of Portuguese spoken among slaves and their Sephardic owners were an influence in the development of Papiamento and the Creole languages of Suriname.

Other Romance languages with Jewish forms, spoken historically by Sephardim, include Judeo-Catalan. Often underestimated, this language was the main language used by the Jewish communities in Catalonia, Balearic Isles and the Valencian region. The Gibraltar community has had a strong influence on the Gibraltar dialect Llanito, contributing several words to this English/Spanish patois.

Other languages associated with Sephardic Jews are mostly extinct, i.e., formerly spoken by some Sephardic communities in Italy. Judeo-Arabic and its dialects have been a large vernacular language for Sephardim who settled in North African kingdoms and Arabic-speaking parts of the Ottoman Empire. Low German (Low Saxon), formerly used as the vernacular by Sephardim around Hamburg and Altona in Northern Germany, is no longer in use as a specifically Jewish vernacular.

Through their diaspora, Sephardim have been a polyglot population, often learning or exchanging words with the language of their host population, most commonly Italian, Arabic, Greek, Turkish, and Dutch. They were easily integrated with the societies that hosted them. Within the last centuries and, more particularly the 19th and 20th centuries, two languages have become dominant in the Sephardic diaspora: French, introduced first by the Alliance Israélite Universelle, and then by absorption of new immigrants to France after Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria became independent, and Hebrew in the state of Israel. [ citation needed ]

The doctrine of galut is considered by scholars to be one of the most important concepts in Jewish history, if not the most important. In Jewish literature glut, the Hebrew word for diaspora, invoked common motifs of oppression, martyrdom, and suffering in discussing the collective experience of exile in diaspora that has been uniquely formative in Jewish culture. This literature was shaped for centuries by the expulsions from Spain and Portugal and thus featured prominently in a wide range of medieval Jewish literature from rabbinic writings to profane poetry. Even so, the treatment of glut diverges in Sephardic sources, which scholar David A. Wacks says "occasionally belie the relatively comfortable circumstances of the Jewish community of Sefarad." [53]

Early history Edit

The precise origins of the Jewish communities of the Iberian peninsula are unclear. There is fragmentary and inconclusive evidence of a Jewish presence on the Iberian Peninsula dating from pre-Roman times. More substantial references date from the Roman period.

The Provençal Rabbi and scholar, Rabbi Abraham ben David, wrote in anno 1161: "A tradition exists with the [Jewish] community of Granada that they are from the inhabitants of Jerusalem, of the descendants of Judah and Benjamin, rather than from the villages, the towns in the outlying districts [of Israel]." [54] Elsewhere, he writes about his maternal grandfather's family and how they came to Spain: "When Titus prevailed over Jerusalem, his officer who was appointed over Hispania appeased him, requesting that he send to him captives made-up of the nobles of Jerusalem, and so he sent a few of them to him, and there were amongst them those who made curtains and who were knowledgeable in the work of silk, and [one] whose name was Baruch, and they remained in Mérida." [55] Here, Rabbi Abraham ben David refers to the second influx of Jews into Spain, shortly after the destruction of Israel's Second Temple in 70 CE.

The earliest mention of Spain is, allegedly, found in Obadiah 1:20: "And the exiles of this host of the sons of Israel who are among the Canaanites as far as Ṣarfat (Hebrew: צרפת ‎), and the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Sepharad, will possess the cities of the south." While the medieval lexicographer, David ben Abraham Al-Fāsī, identifies Ṣarfat with the city of Ṣarfend (Judeo-Arabic: צרפנדה ), [56] the word Sepharad (Hebrew: ספרד ‎) in the same verse has been translated by the 1st-century rabbinic scholar, Yonathan Ben Uzziel, as Aspamia. [57] Based on a later teaching in the compendium of Jewish oral laws compiled by Rabbi Judah Hanasi in 189 CE, known as the Mishnah, Aspamia is associated with a very far place, generally thought of as Hispania, or Spain. [58] In circa 960 CE, Ḥisdai ibn Šaprūṭ, minister of trade in the court of the Caliph in Córdoba, wrote to Joseph, the king of Khazaria, saying: "The name of our land in which we dwell is called in the sacred tongue, Sefarad, but in the language of the Arabs, the indwellers of the lands, Alandalus [Andalusia], the name of the capital of the kingdom, Córdoba." [59]

According to Rabbi David Kimchi (1160–1235), in his commentary on Obadiah 1:20, Ṣarfat and Sepharad, both, refer to the Jewish captivity (Heb. galut) expelled during the war with Titus and who went as far as the countries Alemania (Germany), Escalona, [60] France and Spain. The names Ṣarfat and Sepharad are explicitly mentioned by him as being France and Spain, respectively. Some scholars think that, in the case of the place-name, Ṣarfat (lit. Ṣarfend) – which, as noted, was applied to the Jewish Diaspora in France, the association with France was made only exegetically because of its similarity in spelling with the name פרנצא (France), by a reversal of its letters.

Spanish Jew, Moses de León (ca. 1250 – 1305), mentions a tradition concerning the first Jewish exiles, saying that the vast majority of the first exiles driven away from the land of Israel during the Babylonian captivity refused to return, for they had seen that the Second Temple would be destroyed like the first. [61] In yet another teaching, passed down later by Moses ben Machir in the 16th century, an explicit reference is made to the fact that Jews have lived in Spain since the destruction of the First Temple: [62]

Now, I have heard that this praise, emet weyaṣiv [which is now used by us in the prayer rite] was sent by the exiles who have driven away from Jerusalem and who were not with Ezra in Babylon and that Ezra had sent inquiring after them, but they did not wish to go up [there], replied that since they were destined to go off again into exile a second time, and that the Temple would once again be destroyed, why should we then double our anguish? It is best for us that we remain here in our place and to serve God. Now, I have heard that they are the people of Ṭulayṭulah (Toledo) and those who are near to them. However, that they might not be thought of as wicked men and those who are lacking in fidelity, may God forbid, they wrote down for them this magnanimous praise, etc.

Similarly, Gedaliah ibn Jechia the Spaniard has written: [63]

In [5,]252 anno mundi [1492 CE], the King Ferdinand and his wife, Isabella, made war with the Ishmaelites who were in Granada and took it, and while they returned they commanded the Jews in all of his kingdoms that in but a short time they were to take leave from the countries [they had heretofore possessed], they being Castile, Navarre, Catalonia, Aragón, Granada and Sicily. Then the [Jewish] inhabitants of Ṭulayṭulah (Toledo) answered that they were not present [in the land of Judea] at the time when their Christ was put to death. Apparently, it was written upon a large stone in the city's street which some very ancient sovereign inscribed and testified that the Jews of Ṭulayṭulah (Toledo) did not depart from there during the building of the Second Temple, and were not involved in putting to death [the man whom they called] Christ. Yet, no apology was of any avail to them, neither unto the rest of the Jews, till at length, six hundred-thousand souls had evacuated from there.

Don Isaac Abrabanel, a prominent Jewish figure in Spain in the 15th century and one of the king's trusted courtiers who witnessed the expulsion of Jews from Spain in 1492, informs his readers [64] that the first Jews to reach Spain were brought by ship to Spain by a certain Phiros who was confederate with the king of Babylon when he laid siege to Jerusalem. This man was a Grecian by birth, but who had been given a kingdom in Spain. He became related by marriage to a certain Espan, the nephew of king Heracles, who also ruled over a kingdom in Spain. This Heracles later renounced his throne because of his preference for his native country in Greece, leaving his kingdom to his nephew, Espan, by whom the country of España (Spain) derives its name. The Jewish exiles transported there by the said Phiros were descended by lineage from Judah, Benjamin, Shimon, and Levi, and were, according to Abrabanel, settled in two districts in southern Spain: one, Andalusia, in the city of Lucena—a city so-called by the Jewish exiles that had come there the second, in the country around Ṭulayṭulah (Toledo).

Abrabanel says that the name Ṭulayṭulah (Toledo) was given to the city by its first Jewish inhabitants, and surmises that the name may have meant טלטול (= wandering), on account of their wandering from Jerusalem. He says, furthermore, that the original name of the city was Pirisvalle, so-called by its early pagan inhabitants. He also writes there that he found written in the ancient annals of Spanish history collected by the kings of Spain that the 50,000 Jewish households then residing in the cities throughout Spain were the descendants of men and women who were sent to Spain by the Roman Emperor and who had formerly been subjected to him and whom Titus had originally exiled from places in or around Jerusalem. The two Jewish exiles joined together and became one.

Evidence that suggests Jewish connections with the Iberian Peninsula includes:

  • References in the books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, I Kings, and Jonah to the country of Tarshish, which is thought by many to have been located in modern southern Spain (in ancient Tartessus).
  • A signet ring found at Cadiz, dating from the 8th–7th century BC. The inscription on the ring, generally accepted as Phoenician, has been interpreted by a few scholars to be "paleo-hebraic."
  • An amphora dating from at least the 1st century found in Ibiza, which bears imprints of two Hebrew characters.
  • Several early Jewish writers wrote that their families had lived in Spain since the destruction of the first temple. Isaac Abravanel (1437–1508) stated that the Abravanel family had lived on the Iberian Peninsula for 2,000 years.

Some suggest that substantial Jewish immigration probably occurred during the Roman period of Hispania. The province came under Roman control with the fall of Carthage after the Second Punic War (218–202 BC). Exactly how soon after this time Jews made their way onto the scene in this context is a matter of speculation. It is within the realm of possibility that they went there under the Romans as free men to take advantage of its rich resources. The Jewish historian Josephus confirms that as early as 90 CE there was already a Jewish Diaspora living in Europe, made-up of the two tribes, Judah and Benjamin. Thus, he writes in his Antiquities: [65] ". there are but two tribes in Asia (Turkey) and Europe subject to the Romans, while the ten tribes are beyond the Euphrates till now and are an immense multitude."

Although the spread of Jews into Europe is most commonly associated with the Diaspora that ensued from the Roman conquest of Judea, emigration from Judea into the greater Roman Mediterranean area antedated the destruction of Jerusalem at the hands of the Romans under Titus. Any Jews already in Hispania at this time would have been joined by those who had been enslaved by the Romans under Vespasian and Titus, and dispersed to the extreme west during the period of the Jewish Wars, and especially after the defeat of Judea in 70. One account placed the number carried off to Hispania at 80,000. Subsequent immigrations came into the area along both the northern African and southern European sides of the Mediterranean.

Among the earliest records that may refer specifically to Jews in the Iberian peninsula during the Roman period is Paul's Epistle to the Romans. Scholars such as Josephus Flavius have taken Paul's intention to go to Hispania to preach the gospel (Romans 15:24, 28) to indicate the presence of Jewish communities there, as well as the fact that Herod Antipas's banishment by Caligula in the year 39 may have been to Hispania. [66]

From a slightly later period, Midrash Rabbah (Leviticus Rabba § 29.2), and Pesikta de-Rav Kahana (Rosh Hashanna), both, make mention of the Jewish Diaspora in Spain (Hispania) and their eventual return.

Perhaps the most direct and substantial of early references are the several decrees of the Council of Elvira, convened in the early 4th century, which address proper Christian behavior with regard to the Jews of Hispania.

As citizens of the Roman Empire, the Jews of Hispania engaged in a variety of occupations, including agriculture. Until the adoption of Christianity, Jews had close relations with non-Jewish populations and played an active role in the social and economic life of the province. The edicts of the Synod of Elvira, provide evidence of Jews who were integrated enough into the greater community to cause alarm among some. Of the Council's 80 canonic decisions, those that pertain to Jews maintained a separation between the two communities. It seems that by this time the presence of Jews was of greater concern to Christian authorities than the presence of pagans. Canon 16, which prohibited the marriage of Christians with Jews, was worded more strongly than canon 15, which prohibited marriage with pagans. Canon 78 threatens Christians who commit adultery with Jews with ostracism. Canon 48 forbade the blessing of Christian crops by Jews, and canon 50 forbade the sharing of meals by Christians and Jews.

Yet in comparison to Jewish life in Byzantium and Italy, life for the early Jews in Hispania and the rest of southern Europe was relatively tolerable. This is due in large measure to the difficulty the Church had in establishing itself in its western frontier. In the west, Germanic tribes such as the Suevi, the Vandals, and especially the Visigoths had more or less disrupted the political and ecclesiastical systems of the Roman empire, and for several centuries the Jews enjoyed a degree of peace their brethren to the east did not.

Barbarian invasions brought most of the Iberian peninsula under Visigothic rule by the early 5th century. Other than in their contempt for Trinitarian Christians, the Arian Visigoths were largely uninterested in the religious creeds within their kingdom. It was not until 506, when Alaric II (484–507) published his Brevarium Alaricianum (Breviary of Alaric) (wherein he adopted the laws of the ousted Romans), that a Visigothic king concerned himself with the Jews.

The situation of the Jews changed after the conversion of the Visigothic royal family under Recared from Arianism to Roman Catholicism in 587. In their desire to consolidate the realm under the new religion, the Visigoths adopted an aggressive policy towards Jews. As the king and the church acted in a single interest, the Jews' situation deteriorated. Under successive Visigothic kings and under ecclesiastical authority, many orders of expulsion, forced conversion, isolation, enslavement, execution, and other punitive measures were made. By 612–621, the situation for Jews became intolerable and many left Spain for nearby northern Africa. In 711, thousands of Jews from North Africa accompanied the Moslems who invaded Spain, subsuming Catholic Spain and turning much of it into an Arab state, Al-Andalus. [67]

The Jews of Hispania had been utterly embittered and alienated by Catholic rule by the time of the Muslim invasion. To them, the Moors was perceived as, and indeed were, a liberating force. Wherever they went, the Muslims were greeted by Jews eager to aid them in administering the country. In many conquered towns the garrison was left in the hands of the Jews before the Muslims proceeded further north. This began nearly four centuries of Muslim rule in the Iberian peninsula, which became known as the "Golden Age" of Sephardi Jewry.

Jews in Muslim Iberia Edit

With the victory of Tariq ibn Ziyad in 711, the lives of the Sephardim changed dramatically. Though Islamic law placed restrictions on dhimmis (non-Muslim members of monotheistic faiths), the coming of the Moors was by and large welcomed by the Jews of Iberia.

Both Muslim and Christian sources claim that Jews provided valuable aid to the Muslim conquerors. Once captured, the defense of Cordoba was left in the hands of Jews, and Granada, Malaga, Seville, and Toledo were left to a mixed army of Jews and Moors. Although in some towns Jews may have been helpful to Muslim success, because of the small numbers they were of limited impact.

In spite of the restrictions placed upon the Jews as dhimmis, life under Muslim rule was one of great opportunity and Jews flourished as they did not under the Christian Visigoths. Many Jews came to Iberia, seen as a land of tolerance and opportunity, from the Christian and Muslim worlds. Following initial Arab victories, and especially with the establishment of Umayyad rule by Abd al-Rahman I in 755, the native Jewish community was joined by Jews from the rest of Europe, as well as from Arab lands, from Morocco to Babylon. [ citation needed ] Jewish communities were enriched culturally, intellectually, and religiously by the commingling of these diverse Jewish traditions. [ further explanation needed ]

Arabic culture, of course, also made a lasting impact on Sephardic cultural development. General re-evaluation of scripture was prompted by Muslim anti-Jewish polemics and the spread of rationalism, as well as the anti-Rabbanite polemics of Karaites. The cultural and intellectual achievements of the Arabs, and much of the scientific and philosophical speculation of Ancient Greek culture, which had been best preserved by Arab scholars, was made available to the educated Jew. The meticulous regard the Arabs had for grammar and style also had the effect of stimulating an interest in philological matters in general among Jews. Arabic became the main language of Sephardic science, philosophy, and everyday business, as had been the case with Babylonian geonim. This thorough adoption of the Arabic language also greatly facilitated the assimilation of Jews into Moorish culture, and Jewish activity in a variety of professions, including medicine, commerce, finance, and agriculture increased.

By the 9th century, some members of the Sephardic community felt confident enough to take part in proselytizing amongst Christians. This included the heated correspondences sent between Bodo Eleazar, a former Christian deacon who had converted to Judaism in 838, and the Bishop of Córdoba Paulus Albarus, who had converted from Judaism to Christianity. Each man, using such epithets as "wretched compiler", tried to convince the other to return to his former faith, to no avail. [ citation needed ]

The Golden Age is most closely identified with the reign of Abd al-Rahman III (882–942), the first independent Caliph of Cordoba, and in particular with the career of his Jewish councilor, Hasdai ibn Shaprut (882–942). Within this context of cultural patronage, studies in Hebrew, literature, and linguistics flourished.

Hasdai benefitted world Jewry not only indirectly by creating a favorable environment for scholarly pursuits within Iberia, but also by using his influence to intervene on behalf of foreign Jews: in his letter to Byzantine Princess Helena, he requested protection for the Jews under Byzantine rule, attesting to the fair treatment of the Christians of al-Andalus, and perhaps indicating that such was contingent on the treatment of Jews abroad.

One notable contribution to Christian intellectualism is Ibn Gabirol's neo-Platonic Fons Vitae ("The Source of Life" "Mekor Hayyim"). Thought by many to have been written by a Christian, this work was admired by Christians and studied in monasteries throughout the Middle Ages, though the work of Solomon Munk in the 19th century proved that the author of Fons Vitae was the Jewish ibn Gabirol. [68]

In addition to contributions of original work, the Sephardim were active as translators. Mainly in Toledo, texts were translated between Greek, Arabic, Hebrew, and Latin. In translating the great works of Arabic, Hebrew, and Greek into Latin, Iberian Jews were instrumental in bringing the fields of science and philosophy, which formed much of the basis of Renaissance learning, into the rest of Europe.

In the early 11th century, centralized authority based at Cordoba broke down following the Berber invasion and the ousting of the Umayyads. In its stead arose the independent taifa principalities under the rule of local Muwallad, Arab, Berber, or Slavonic leaders. Rather than having a stifling effect, the disintegration of the caliphate expanded the opportunities to Jewish and other professionals. The services of Jewish scientists, doctors, traders, poets, and scholars were generally valued by Christian and Muslim rulers of regional centers, especially as order was restored in recently conquered towns. Rabbi Samuel ha-Nagid (ibn Naghrela) was the Vizier of Granada. He was succeeded by his son Joseph ibn Naghrela who was slain by an incited mob along with most of the Jewish community. The remnant fled to Lucena.

The first major and most violent persecution in Islamic Spain was the 1066 Granada massacre, which occurred on 30 December, when a Muslim mob stormed the royal palace in Granada, crucified Jewish vizier Joseph ibn Naghrela and massacred most of the Jewish population of the city after rumors spread that the powerful vizier was plotting to kill the weak-minded and drunk King Badis ibn Habus. [69] According to the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, "More than 1,500 Jewish families, numbering 4,000 persons, fell in one day, [70] a number contested by some historians who deem it to be an example of "the usual hyperbole in numerical estimates, with which history abounds." [71] The decline of the Golden Age began before the completion of the Christian Reconquista, with the penetration and influence of the Almoravides, and then the Almohads, from North Africa. These more intolerant sects abhorred the liberality of the Islamic culture of al-Andalus, including the position of authority some dhimmis held over Muslims. When the Almohads gave the Jews a choice of either death or conversion to Islam, many Jews emigrated. Some, such as the family of Maimonides, fled south and east to the more tolerant Muslim lands, while others went northward to settle in the growing Christian kingdoms.

Meanwhile, the Reconquista continued in the north throughout the 12th century. As various Arab lands fell to the Christians, conditions for some Jews in the emerging Christian kingdoms became increasingly favorable. As had happened during the reconstruction of towns following the breakdown of authority under the Umayyads, the services of Jews were employed by the victorious Christian leaders. Sephardic knowledge of the language and culture of the enemy, their skills as diplomats and professionals, as well as their desire for relief from intolerable conditions — the very same reasons that they had proved useful to the Arabs in the early stages of the Muslim invasion — made their services very valuable.

However, the Jews from the Muslim south were not entirely secure in their northward migrations. Old prejudices were compounded by newer ones. Suspicions of complicity with the Muslims were alive and well as Jews immigrated, speaking Arabic. However, many of the newly arrived Jews of the north prospered during the late 11th and early 12th centuries. The majority of Latin documentation regarding Jews during this period refers to their landed property, fields, and vineyards.

In many ways life had come full circle for the Sephardim of al-Andalus. As conditions became more oppressive during the 12th and 13th centuries, Jews again looked to an outside culture for relief. Christian leaders of reconquered cities granted them extensive autonomy, and Jewish scholarship recovered somewhat and developed as communities grew in size and importance. However, the Reconquista Jews never reached the same heights as had those of the Golden Age.

After the Reconquista Edit

Among the Sephardim were many who were the descendants, or heads, of wealthy families and who, as Marranos, had occupied prominent positions in the countries they had left. Some had been stated officials, others had held positions of dignity within the Church many had been the heads of large banking-houses and mercantile establishments, and some were physicians or scholars who had officiated as teachers in high schools. Their Spanish or Portuguese was a lingua franca that enabled Sephardim from different countries to engage in commerce and diplomacy.

With their social equals they associated freely, without regard to religion and more likely with regard to equivalent or comparative education, for they were generally well read, which became a tradition and expectation. They were received at the courts of sultans, kings, and princes, and often were employed as ambassadors, envoys, or agents. The number of Sephardim who have rendered important services to different countries is considerable as Samuel Abravanel (or "Abrabanel"—financial councilor to the viceroy of Naples) or Moses Curiel (or "Jeromino Nunes da Costa"-serving as Agent to the Crown of Portugal in the United Provinces). [72] [73] Among other names mentioned are those of Belmonte, Nasi, Francisco Pacheco, Blas, Pedro de Herrera, Palache, Pimentel, Azevedo, Sagaste, Salvador, Sasportas, Costa, Curiel, Cansino, Schönenberg, Sapoznik (Zapatero), Toledo, Miranda, Toledano, Pereira, and Teixeira.

The Sephardim distinguished themselves as physicians and statesmen, and won the favor of rulers and princes, in both the Christian and the Islamic world. That the Sephardim were selected for prominent positions in every country where they settled was only in part due to the fact that Spanish had become a world-language through the expansion of Spain into the world-spanning Spanish Empire—the cosmopolitan cultural background after long associations with Islamic scholars of the Sephardic families also made them extremely well educated for the times, even well into the European Enlightenment.

For a long time, the Sephardim took an active part in Spanish literature they wrote in prose and in rhyme, and were the authors of theological, philosophical, belletristic (aesthetic rather than content-based writing), pedagogic (teaching), and mathematical works. The rabbis, who, in common with all the Sephardim, emphasized a pure and euphonious pronunciation of Hebrew, delivered their sermons in Spanish or in Portuguese. Several of these sermons have appeared in print. Their thirst for knowledge, together with the fact that they associated freely with the outer world, led the Sephardim to establish new educational systems. Wherever they settled, they founded schools that used Spanish as the medium of instruction. Theatre in Constantinople was in Judæo-Spanish since it was forbidden to Muslims.

In Portugal, the Sephardim were given important roles in the sociopolitical sphere and enjoyed a certain amount of protection from the Crown (e.g. Yahia Ben Yahia, first "Rabino Maior" of Portugal and supervisor of the public revenue of the first King of Portugal, D. Afonso Henriques). Even with the increasing pressure from the Catholic Church, this state of affairs remained more or less constant and the number of Jews in Portugal grew with those running from Spain. This changed with the marriage of D. Manuel I of Portugal with the daughter of the Catholic Monarchs of the newly born Spain. In 1497 the Decree ordering the expulsion or forced conversion of all the Jews was passed, and the Sephardim either fled or went into secrecy under the guise of "Cristãos Novos", i.e. New Christians (this Decree was symbolically revoked in 1996 by the Portuguese Parliament). Those who fled to Genoa were only allowed to land provided they received baptism. Those who were fortunate enough to reach the Ottoman Empire had a better fate: the Sultan Bayezid II sarcastically [ citation needed ] sent his thanks to Ferdinand for sending him some of his best subjects, thus "impoverishing his own lands while enriching his (Bayezid's)". Jews arriving in the Ottoman Empire were mostly resettled in and around Thessalonica and to some extent in Constantinople and İzmir. This was followed by a great massacre of Jews in the city of Lisbon in 1506 and the establishment of the Portuguese Inquisition in 1536. This caused the flight of the Portuguese Jewish community, which continued until the extinction of the Courts of Inquisition in 1821 by then there were very few Jews in Portugal.

In Amsterdam, where Jews were especially prominent in the 17th century on account of their number, wealth, education, and influence, they established poetical academies after Spanish models two of these were the Academia de Los Sitibundos and the Academia de Los Floridos. In the same city they also organized the first Jewish educational institution, with graduate classes in which, in addition to Talmudic studies, the instruction was given in the Hebrew language. The most important synagogue, or Esnoga, as it is usually called amongst Spanish and Portuguese Jews, is the Amsterdam Esnoga—usually considered the "mother synagogue", and the historical center of the Amsterdam minhag.

A sizable Sephardic community had settled in Morocco and other Northern African countries, which were colonized by France in the 19th century. Jews in Algeria were given French citizenship in 1870 by the décret Crémieux (previously Jews and Muslims could apply for French citizenship, but had to renounce the use of traditional religious courts and laws, which many did not want to do). When France withdrew from Algeria in 1962, the local Jewish communities largely relocated to France. There are some tensions between some of those communities and the earlier French Jewish population (who were mostly Ashkenazi Jews), and with Arabic-Muslim communities.

In the Age of Discoveries Edit

The largest part of Spanish Jews expelled in 1492 fled to Portugal, where they eluded persecution for a few years. The Jewish community in Portugal was perhaps then some 15% of that country's population. [74] They were declared Christians by Royal decree unless they left, but the King hindered their departure, needing their artisanship and working population for Portugal's overseas enterprises and territories. Later Sephardic Jews settled in many trade areas controlled by the Empire of Philip II and others. With various countries in Europe also the Sephardi Jews established commercial relations. In a letter dated 25 November 1622, King Christian IV of Denmark invites Jews of Amsterdam to settle in Glückstadt, where, among other privileges, the free exercise of their religion would be assured to them.

Álvaro Caminha, in Cape Verde islands, who received the land as a grant from the crown, established a colony with Jews forced to stay on the island of São Tomé. Príncipe island was settled in 1500 under a similar arrangement. Attracting settlers proved difficult, however, the Jewish settlement was a success and their descendants settled many parts of Brazil. [75]

In 1579 Luis de Carvajal y de la Cueva a Portuguese-born Converso, Spanish-Crown officer, was awarded a large swath of territory in New Spain, known as Nuevo Reino de León. He founded settlements with other conversos that would later become Monterrey.

In particular, Jews established relations between the Dutch and South America. They contributed to the establishment of the Dutch West Indies Company in 1621, and some were members of the directorate. The ambitious schemes of the Dutch for the conquest of Brazil were carried into effect through Francisco Ribeiro, a Portuguese captain, who is said to have had Jewish relations in the Netherlands. Some years afterward, when the Dutch in Brazil appealed to the Netherlands for craftsmen of all kinds, many Jews went to Brazil. About 600 Jews left Amsterdam in 1642, accompanied by two distinguished scholars—Isaac Aboab da Fonseca and Moses Raphael de Aguilar. Jews supported the Dutch in the struggle between the Netherlands and Portugal for possession of Brazil.

In 1642, Aboab da Fonseca was appointed rabbi at Kahal Zur Israel Synagogue in the Dutch colony of Pernambuco (Recife), Brazil. Most of the white inhabitants of the town were Sephardic Jews from Portugal who had been banned by the Portuguese Inquisition to this town at the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. In 1624, the colony had been occupied by the Dutch. By becoming the rabbi of the community, Aboab da Fonseca was the first appointed rabbi of the Americas. The name of his congregation was Kahal Zur Israel Synagogue and the community had a synagogue, a mikveh and a yeshiva as well. However, during the time he was a rabbi in Pernambuco, the Portuguese re-occupied the place again in 1654, after a struggle of nine years. Aboab da Fonseca managed to return to Amsterdam after the occupation of the Portuguese. Members of his community immigrated to North America and were among the founders of New York City, but some Jews took refuge in Seridó.

Besides merchants, a great number of physicians were among the Spanish Jews in Amsterdam: Samuel Abravanel, David Nieto, Elijah Montalto, and the Bueno family Joseph Bueno was consulted in the illness of Prince Maurice (April 1623). Jews were admitted as students at the university, where they studied medicine as the only branch of the science of practical use to them, for they were not permitted to practice law, and the oath they would be compelled to take excluded them from the professorships. Neither were Jews taken into the trade-guilds: a resolution passed by the city of Amsterdam in 1632 (the cities being autonomous) excluded them. Exceptions, however, were made in the case of trades that related to their religion: printing, bookselling, and the selling of meat, poultry, groceries, and drugs. In 1655 a Jew was, exceptionally, permitted to establish a sugar-refinery.

Jonathan Ray, a professor of Jewish theological studies, has argued that the community of Sephardim was formed more during the 1600s than the medieval period. He explains that prior to expulsion Spanish Jewish communities did not have a shared identity in the sense that developed in diaspora. They did not carry any particular Hispano-Jewish identity into exile with them, but certain shared cultural traits contributed to the formation of the diaspora community from what had historically been independent communities. [76]

The Holocaust Edit

The Holocaust that devastated European Jewry and virtually destroyed its centuries-old culture also wiped out the great European population centers of Sephardi Jewry and led to the almost complete demise of its unique language and traditions. Sephardi Jewish communities from France and the Netherlands in the northwest to Yugoslavia and Greece in the southeast almost disappeared.

On the eve of World War II, the European Sephardi community was concentrated in Southeastern Europe countries of Greece, Yugoslavia, and Bulgaria. Its leading centers were in Salonika, Sarajevo, Belgrade, and Sofia. The experience of Jewish communities in those countries during the war varied greatly and depended on the type of regime under which they fell.

The Jewish communities of Yugoslavia and northern Greece, including the 50,000 Jews of Salonika, fell under direct German occupation in April 1941 and bore the full weight and intensity of Nazi repressive measures from dispossession, humiliation, and forced labor to hostage-taking, and finally deportation to the Auschwitz concentration camp. [77]

The Jewish population of southern Greece fell under the jurisdiction of the Italians who eschewed the enactment of anti-Jewish legislation and resisted whenever possible German efforts to transfer them to occupied Poland, until the surrender of Italy on 8 September 1943 brought the Jews under German control.

Sephardi Jews in Bosnia and Croatia were ruled by a German-created Independent State of Croatia state from April 1941, which subjected them to pogrom-like actions before herding them into local camps where they were murdered side by side with Serbs and Roma (see Porajmos). The Jews of Macedonia and Thrace were controlled by Bulgarian occupation forces, which after rendering them stateless, rounded them up and turned them over to the Germans for deportation.

Finally, the Jews of Bulgaria proper were under the rule of a Nazi ally that subjected them to ruinous anti-Jewish legislation, but ultimately yielded to pressure from Bulgarian parliamentarians, clerics, and intellectuals not to deport them. More than 50,000 Bulgarian Jews were thus saved.

The Jews in North Africa identified themselves only as Jews or European Jews, having been westernized by French and Italian colonization. During World War II and until Operation Torch, the Jews of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunesia, governed by pro-Nazi Vichy France, suffered the same antisemitic legislation that Jews suffered in France mainland. They did not, however, directly suffer the more extreme Nazi Germany antisemitic policies, and nor did the Jews in Italian Libya. The Jewish communities in those European North Africa countries, in Bulgaria, and in Denmark were the only ones who were spared the mass deportation and mass murder that afflicted other Jewish communities. Operation Torch therefore saved more than 400,000 Jews in European North Africa.

Later history and culture Edit

The Jews in French North Africa were awarded French citizenship by 1870 Crémieux Decree. They were therefore considered part of the European pieds noirs community in spite of having been established in North Africa for many centuries, rather than subject to the Indigénat status imposed on their Muslim former neighbors. Most consequently moved to France in the late 1950s and early 1960s after Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria became independent, and they now make up a majority of the French Jewish community.

Today, the Sephardim have preserved the romances and the ancient melodies and songs of Spain and Portugal, as well as a large number of old Portuguese and Spanish proverbs. [78] A number of children's plays, like, for example, El Castillo, are still popular among them, and they still manifest a fondness for the dishes peculiar to Iberia, such as the pastel, or pastelico, a sort of meat-pie, and the pan de España, or pan de León. At their festivals, they follow the Spanish custom of distributing dulces, or dolces, a confection wrapped in paper bearing a picture of the magen David (six-pointed star).

In Mexico, the Sephardic community originates mainly from Turkey, Greece, and Bulgaria. In 1942 the Colegio Hebreo Tarbut was founded in collaboration with the Ashkenazi family and instruction was in Yiddish. In 1944 the Sephardim community established a separate "Colegio Hebreo Sefaradí" with 90 students where instruction was in Hebrew and complemented with classes on Jewish customs. By 1950 there were 500 students. In 1968 a group of young Sephardim created the group Tnuat Noar Jinujit Dor Jadash in support of the creation of the state of Israel. In 1972 the Majazike Tora institute is created aiming to prepare young male Jews for their Bar Mitzvah. [79]

While the majority of American Jews today are Ashkenazim, in Colonial times Sephardim made up the majority of the Jewish population. For example, the 1654 Jews who arrived in New Amsterdam fled from the colony of Recife, Brazil after the Portuguese seized it from the Dutch. Through most of the 18th century, American synagogues conducted and recorded their business in Portuguese, even if their daily language was English. It was not until widespread German immigration to the United States in the 19th century that the tables turned and Ashkenazim (initially from Germany but by the 20th century from Eastern Europe) began to dominate the American Jewish landscape.

The Sephardim usually have followed the general rules for Spanish and Portuguese names. Many used to bear Portuguese and Spanish names however, it is noteworthy that a large number of Sephardic names are of Hebrew and Arabic roots and are totally absent in Iberian patronyms and are therefore often seen as typically Jewish. Many of the names are associated with non-Jewish (Christian) families and individuals and are by no means exclusive to Jews. After 1492, many marranos changed their names to hide their Jewish origins and avoid persecution, adopting professions and even translating such patronyms to local languages like Arabic and even German. [ citation needed ] It was common to choose the name of the Parish Church where they have been baptized into the Christian faith, such as Santa Cruz or the common name of the word "Messiah" (Savior/Salvador) or adopted the name of their Christian godparents. [80] Dr. Mark Hilton's research demonstrated in IPS DNA testing that the last name of Marranos linked with the location of the local parish was correlated 89.3%

In contrast to Ashkenazic Jews, who do not name newborn children after living relatives, Sephardic Jews often name their children after the children's grandparents, even if they are still alive. The first son and daughter are traditionally named after the paternal grandparents, then the maternal parents' names are next in line for the remaining children. After that, additional children's names are "free", so to speak, meaning that one can choose whatever name, without any more "naming obligations." The only instance in which Sephardic Jews will not name after their own parents is when one of the spouses shares a common first name with a mother/father-in-law (since Jews will not name their children after themselves.) There are times though when the "free" names are used to honor the memory of a deceased relative who died young or childless. These conflicting naming conventions can be troublesome when children are born into mixed Ashkenazic-Sephardic households.

A notable exception to the distinct Ashkenazi and Sephardi naming traditions is found among Dutch Jews, where Ashkenazim have for centuries followed the tradition otherwise attributed to Sephardim. See Chuts.

Citizenship laws in Spain and Portugal Edit

Since April 2013, Sephardim who are descendants of those expelled in the inquisition are entitled to claim Portuguese citizenship provided that they "belong to a Sephardic community of Portuguese origin with ties to Portugal". The amendment to Portugal's "Law on Nationality" was approved unanimously on 11 April 2013, [81] and remains open to applications as of October 2019 [update] . [82]

A similar law was approved in Spain in 2014 [83] and passed in 2015. By the expiry date on 30 September 2019, Spain had received 127,000 applications, mostly from Latin America. [82]

Sephardic pedigrees Edit

Great authority was given to the president of each congregation. He and the rabbinate of his congregation formed the "ma'amad", without whose approbation (often worded in Spanish or Portuguese, or Italian) no book of religious content might be published. The president not only had the power to make authoritative resolutions with regard to congregational affairs and to decide communal questions, but he had also the right to observe the religious conduct of the individual and to punish anyone suspected of heresy or of trespassing against the laws.

In the Medieval, a considerable number of Ashkenazi Jews from historic "Ashkenaz" (France and Germany) had moved to study Kabbalah and Torah under the guidance of Sephardic Jewish Rabbis in Iberia. These Ashkenazi Jews who assimilated into the Sephardic society eventually gained the surnames "Ashkenazi" [120] if they came from Germany and "Zarfati" if they came from France. [121]

Sephardi-Ashkenazi relations have at times been tense and clouded by arrogance, snobbery and claims of racial superiority, with both sides claiming the inferiority of the other, based upon such features as physical traits and culture. [122] [123] [124] [125] [126]

In some instances, Sephardi Jews have joined Ashkenazi communities, and have intermarried. [127] [128] [129]


What was the number of native casualties in the Muslim invasion of Hispania? - History

This site (“Muslim Holocaust Muslim Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/ ) is provided as a humanitarian public service to inform people about past, present and predicted future Muslim Holocausts and Muslim Genocides.

This site is necessary because of extraordinary lying by omission and commission by Western media, journalists, writers, academics and politicians in relation to such atrocities against Muslims and against non-European Humanity in general.

A new book “US-imposed Post-9-11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide” by Gideon Polya (Korsgaard Publishing, 2020) quantitatively exposes 61 atrocities from colonial crimes (e.g. the ongoing Palestinian Genocide) to the 21st century Muslim Holocaust and the worsening Climate Genocide .

Publisher’s comments: "US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide" is a monument to free speech in a time of cowardice and widespread censorship. The book delivers a profound message from a top scholar to humanitarians across the globe: "Silence kills and silence is complicity". With silence from government, academia, and mainstream media, your only choice is to read this book if you want to understand the disastrous consequences of the "War on Terror" and "climate denial".

For a comprehensive list of famines, genocides and holocausts see: “Report Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/reportgenocide/ .

History ignored yields history repeated, holocaust ignored yields holocaust repeated, and genocide ignored yields genocide repeated, noting that “holocaust” refers to a huge number of deaths, and that “genocide” is defined by the UN Genocide Convention as “acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group”. Yet so many holocausts and genocides are ignored. Thus in 1942-1945 the British with Australian complicity deliberately starved 6-7 million Indians to death in Bengal and in adjacent Indian provinces for strategic reasons. However the WW2 Bengali Holocaust, the first WW2 atrocity to have been described as a “holocaust” and contemporaneous with the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million Jews killed by violence or imposed deprivation), has been largely removed from public perception, as have been many other man-made mass mortality atrocities. This lying by omission is far, far worse than repugnant lying by commission because the latter at least permits refutation and discussion. Indeed for the same reason genocide ignoring and holocaust ignoring are far, far worse than repugnant genocide denial and holocaust denial. Of course war is the penultimate in racism and genocidal war is the ultimate in racism.

In the main this book addresses the question of how many people have died in the US-imposed post-9-11 Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide (the post-9-11 US War on Terror), and the short answer is “Lots”. The ghastly 21st century reality is that an estimated 32 million Muslims have died from violence, 5 million, or through avoidable death from imposed deprivation, 27 million, in 20 countries invaded by the US Alliance since the US Government’s 9-11 false flag atrocity (3,000 killed) that numerous science, architecture, engineering, aviation, military and intelligence experts conclude was perpetrated by the US Government itself. However it gets much, much worse because holocaust ignored yields holocaust repeated. The large-scale active and passive killing continues. Indeed each year 15 million people die avoidably from deprivation in an ongoing Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust on Spaceship Earth with endlessly greedy, neoliberal One Percenters in charge of the flight deck.

Humanity and the Biosphere are existentially threatened by nuclear weapons and man-made climate change, this leading the brilliant Professor Stephen Hawking to state: “We see great peril if governments and societies do not take action now to render nuclear weapons obsolete and to prevent further climate change”. However continuing ignoring and inaction means a worsening Climate Genocide in which 10 billion people will die en route to a sustainable human population of only 0.5-1.0 billion by 2100. Truth and love can yet save Humanity and the Biosphere but we are rapidly running out of time. We must act by informing others and opposing those whose murderous greed, racism and violence would destroy our world. Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity.

“US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide” is a monument to free speech in a time of cowardice and widespread censorship. This book delivers a profound message from a scientist to fellow humanitarians across the globe: “Silence kills and silence is complicity”. With silence from government, academia, and mainstream media, read this book if you want to understand the disastrous consequences of the “War on Terror” and “Climate denial.”

Foreword by S. Korsgaard: Accountability and Freedom of Press……v

Foreword by K. Barrett: Holocaust Studies Revised..….……………..xxi

Introduction to US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide by G. Polya…xxvii

Chapter 1: Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust…..………..……. 1

Chapter 2: Mainstream media fake news through lying by omission. 15

Chapter 3: “Forgotten” WW2 Bengali Holocaust (1942-1945)……. 23

Chapter 4: American Empire (1776-)………………………………. 37

Chapter 5: US state terrorism & 9-11 (2001-)………………………. 49

Chapter 6: Afghan Holocaust & Afghan Genocide (2001-)…………..61

Chapter 7: Iraqi Holocaust & Iraqi Genocide (1990-2011)…………. 73

Chapter 8: Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide (2001-)………….85

Chapter 9: Libyan Genocide (2011-)…………………………………107

Chapter 10: Iranian Holocaust & Iranian Genocide (1978-)…………120

Chapter 11: Iraqi Genocide resumed (2012-)………………………. 139

Chapter 12: Syrian Holocaust & Syrian Genocide (2012-)…………..153

Chapter 13: Somali Holocaust & Somali Genocide (1992-)…………187

Chapter 14: Yemeni Genocide (2015-)……………………………….199

Chapter 15: Opiate Holocaust (2001-)…………………………….….215

Chapter 16: Palestinian Genocide (1916-)……………………………231

Chapter 17: Indian Avoidable Mortality Holocaust (1757-)…………257

Chapter 18: Rohingya Genocide (2016-)………………………….….269

Chapter 19: Air pollution deaths…………………………………..….287

Chapter 20: American Holocaust…………………………………..…301

Chapter 21: Climate Genocide & War on Terra……………………. 315

Chapter 22: War on Truth………………………………………. 333

Holocaust is the destruction of a large number of people. The term was first applied to a WW2 atrocity by Jog in 1944 (Jog, N.G. (1944), Churchill’s Blind-Spot: India (New Book Company, Bombay)) in relation to the “forgotten” man-made Bengal Famine (6-7 million Indians - many of them Muslims in a "forgotten" WW2 Muslim Holocaust - deliberately starved to death by the British, 1942-1945). It was subsequently applied to the Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million killed, 1 in 6 dying from deprivation) which was part of a horrendous WW2 European Holocaust (30 million Slavs, Jews and Gypsies killed in the Nazi German Lebensraum genocide).

Unfortunately the racist Zionists (RZs) (who were complicit in the Jewish Holocaust by collaboration with the Nazis, opposing placement of Jewish refugees anywhere but Palestine and persuading Churchill to oppose the Brand scheme to save 0.7 million Hungarian Jews) have appropriated the term Holocaust to mean only the WW2 Jewish Holocaust to the exclusion of all other holocausts (see the testimony of outstanding humanitarian Jews Joel Brand:

Genocide is very precisely defined in International Law as “acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group” as set out by Article 2 of the 1948 UN Genocide Convention : “In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such: a) Killing members of the group b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”

Generating refugees is also genocide. Thus racist Britain generated 8 million Muslim refugees (and 10 million Hindu and Sikh refugees) in its "divide and rule" Partition of India in 1947. Today in 2015 and overwhelmingly generated by Neocon American and Zionist Imperialist (NAZI) US Alliance war criminals and state terrorists, there are about 30 million Muslim refugees in the world, the breakdown being 11 million Syrians, 7 million Palestinians, 5 million Iraqis, 2 million Somalis, 2 million Rohingyas, 1 million Pakistanis, 1 million Libyans, and 0.5 million Central African Republicans (see “Muslim Holocaust Muslim Genocide”: “Muslim Holocaust Muslim Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/ ).

Key to this internationally agreed, legal definition of genocide is “intent”. Thus the “intent’ of a serial killer is not abolished by his refusal to confess or otherwise explicitly declare “intent” – it can be clearly established simply by the evidence of sustained, remorseless actions leading to serial deaths. Likewise, for example, the sustained, remorseless actions (and inactions) of the British caused the deaths of 6-7 million Indians in 1943-1945 Bengali Holocaust (see the transcript of the 2008 BBC broadcast involving myself, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and other scholars: http://www.open2.net/thingsweforgot/bengalfamine_programme.html ) the sustained British deprivation of its Indian subjects in the 2 century British Indian Holocaust (1.5 BILLION excess deaths, or about 1.8 BILLION including the Native States, and about 20% of them Muslims) (see: http://mwcnews.net/content/view/26713/42/ and http://mwcnews.net/content/view/31306/42/ ).

Here is the expert advice of Denis Halliday (who resigned after 34 years with the UN, including being UN assistant secretary-general, over the Sanctions imposed on Iraq, characterizing them as “genocide”) on genocidal “intent to kill” in answering the question “Who, in your view, is primarily responsible for the deaths of those 500,000 children under five [under Sanctions]?” (2000) : “All the members of the Permanent Security Council, when they passed 1284, reconfirmed that economic sanctions had to be sustained, knowing the consequences. That constitutes ‘intent to kill’, because we know that sanctions are killing several thousand per month. Now, of the five permanent members, three abstained but an abstention is no better than a vote for, in a sense. Britain and America of course voted for this continuation. The rest of them don’t count because they’re lackeys, or they’re paid off. The only country that stood up was Malaysia, and they also abstained. But you know, by abstaining instead of using your veto, when you are a permanent member you're guilty because you’re continuing something that has this deadly impact. However, I would normally point the finger at London and Washington, because they are the most active in sustaining sanctions: they are the ones who will not compromise" (see: Denis Halliday, interviewed by David Edwards, “Half a million children under five are dead in Iraq – who is responsible. An interview with Denis Halliday - Former Assistant Secretary-General of The United Nations”, Media Lens, May 2000: http://www.medialens.org/articles/the_articles/articles_2001/iraqdh.htm ).

Muslims have been subject to horrendous mass murder events, such as the mass murder of the people of Jerusalem by the Crusaders on 15 July 1099 - more than 70,000 dead bodies of Muslim children and women were found in the Mosque of Omar in Jerusalem alone. In the13th century the Mongols under Genghis Khan killed millions in Iraq and adjoining. regions. In 1492 millions of Muslims (and Jews) were killed or expelled from Spain, putting an end to the brilliant civilization of Moorish Spain. Millions of Muslims were killed in subsequent centuries due to expansion of the Russian Empire in Asia, the British Empire in Asia and Africa, the French Empire in Asia and Africa, the Spanish Empire in Asia and Africa, the Portuguese Empire in Africa and Asia and the Dutch Empire in South East Asia (principally in what is now Indonesia)..

In the interests of Humanity I have created a series of detailed, documented websites that set out documented, authoritative data and opinions about CURRENT, ongoing holocausts and genocides of which all but the Australian Aboriginal Genocide involve active or passive mass murder of Muslims and which are are overwhelmingly ignored by academics, journalists, politicians and media in the lying, holocaust complicit, holocaust ignoring, genocide complicit, genocide ignoring, Zionist-beholden, neocon-beholden, US imperialism-beholden Western Murdochracies.

Muslim Holocaust, Muslim Genocide in the post-9-11 Zionist-promoted US War on Muslims (aka US War on Terror) - 32 million Muslims have died from violence, 5 million, or from imposed deprivation, 27 million, in 20 countries invaded by the US Alliance since the US Government's 9-11 false flag atrocity (3,000 killed in an atrocity involving the US Government and very likely involving Apartheid Israel and Saudi Arabia).

Palestinian Holocaust, Palestinian Genocide : for Palestinians as a whole, 2 million dead including 0.1 million violent deaths and 1.9 million war- and occupation-related avoidable deaths from deprivation since WW1 0.75 million under-5 infant deaths (1950-2012). For Occupied Palestinians, 0.3 million post-invasion violent and non-violent excess deaths, 1967-2011 0.2 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths, 1967-2011 (75% avoidable and due to US Alliance-backed Apartheid Israel war crimes in gross violation of the Geneva Convention and the UN Genocide Convention) 7 million refugees (see “Palestinian Genocide” : http://sites.google.com/site/palestiniangenocide/ ).

Afghan Holocaust, Afghan Genocide : as of October 2011, 5.6 million war-related deaths, 2001-2011 1.4 million post-invasion violent deaths 4.2 million non-violent excess deaths from deprivation 2.9 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths (90% avoidable and due to US Alliance war crimes in gross violation of the Geneva Convention and the UN Genocide Convention), 3-4 million refugees plus 2.5 million NW Pakistan Pashtun refugees (see “Afghan Holocaust, Afghan Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/afghanholocaustafghangenocide/ ).

Indian Holocaust, Indian Genocide (and Bengali Holocaust, Bengali Genocide - about 20% of the population of India under the British was Muslim and 1,800 million Indians died avoidably from imposed deprivation under genocidally racist and rapacious British rule that involved a regular succession of horrendous man-made famines from the Great Bengal Famine of 1769-1770 (10 million killed) to the WW2 Bengal Famine (WW2 Bengali Holocaust, Bengali Genocide, WW2 Indian Holocaust 6-7 million deliberately starved to the death by the British under mass murderer Churchill with Australian complicity through withholding food from starving India from its huge wartime wheat stores) with numerous famines and other atrocities in between (e.g. it si estimated that in the decade after the Indian Rebellion in 1857 the British exacted revenge for 2,000 British dead by killing 10 million Indians).

Iraqi Holocaust, Iraqi Genocide : for the period 2003- 2011, 2.7 million post-invasion war-related deaths, 1.5 million violent deaths, 1.2 million non-violent excess deaths from war-imposed dperivation, 0.8 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths, 5-6 million refugees for the period 1990-2003, 0.2 million violent deaths, 1.7 million non-violent excess deaths from war-imposed deprivation, 1.2 million under-5 infant deaths for the period 1990-2011, 4.6 million war-related deaths, 1.7 million violent deaths, 2.9 million deaths from war-imposed deprivation, 2.0 million under-5 infant deaths (90% avoidable and due to US Alliance war crimes in gross violation of the Geneva Convention and the UN Genocide Convention) (see Iraqi Holocaust, Iraqi Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/iraqiholocaustiraqigenocide/ ). The US, UK and Australia have now resumed killing Iraqis (Australia has commenced its Seventh Iraq War since 1915) -there have been 9 million Iraqi deaths from Western violence or Western-imposed deprivation since 1914.

Somali Holocaust, Somali Genocide: in the period 1992 - present (this successively involving US, Ethiopian and most recently Kenyan invasion) , 0.4 million violent deaths, 1.8 million avoidable deaths from war-imposed deprivation, 1.3 million under-5 year old infant deaths( 90% avoidable and due to US Alliance war crimes in gross violation of the Geneva Convention and the UN Genocide Convention), and 2.0 million refugees.

Iranian Genocide and Iranian Holocaust: since the 1979 Iranian Revolution that removed the US-installed Shah, the US has conducted a 4-decade US War on Iran through outright violence (as in the US-backed Iran- Iraq War), through application of deadly sanctions, and through the deadly impact of opiate drugs from US-occupied Afghanistan. Iranian deaths have totalled 1 million from violence and 3 million avoidable deaths from war- and sanctions-imposed deprivation. Now the war criminal and nuclear terrorist UK, US and Apartheid Israel are itching for a Trump “obliteration” of Iran.

in the 1979-2019 , 4-decade US War on Iran

Libyan Holocaust, Libyan Genocide from 2011 onwards: before the France-UK-US (FUKUS) Coalition invasion the under-5 infant mortality was only 19 per 1,000 births in Libya as compared to 8 in the US the FUKUS Coalition has killed 60,000-100,000 Libyans and wounded 50,000 already the FUKUS-backed rebels are ethnically cleansing "Black Libyans" Tawerga, formerly home to 10,000 mainly Black Libyans has been destroyed and completely ethnically cleansed 1 million Black sub-Saharan refugees have fled refugees total about 1.1 million the Libyan Holocaust and Libyan Genocide has just begun.

Syrian Holocaust and Syrian Genocide from 2012 onwards has been associated, so far (2015), with about 0.5 million Syrian violent deaths , a comparable number of Syrian avoidable deaths from war-imposed deprivation, 6 million Syrians internally displaced, and 5 million Syrian refugees outside Syria (“Syrian civil war”, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrian_Civil_War ). The The increasingly jihadi dominated Sunni rebellion has been variously supported by the US, UK, France, Australia, Apartheid Israel , Turkey, Jordan, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia.

Myanmar Rohingya Genocide: 1000s of Muslims have been killed and up to 650,000 displaced mainly in the Rakhine state. About 2 million Rohingyas have been made non-citizens of Myanmar (see "Myanmar Rohingya Genocide": https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/myanmar ).

Central African Republic Muslim Genocide: most Muslims had been driven out of the western half of the CAR and thousands are at risk of being killed there. Almost all of more than 100,000 Muslims once residing in the Central African Republic (CAR) capital, Bangui, have fled the violence perpetrated by Christian militias despite French "peacekeepers" (see: https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/central-african ).

Bosnian Genocide (1992-1995) – the ethnic cleansing of Muslim Bosnians in the 1992-1995 Balkans War (Bosnian War) of which the wiorst singoe atrocity was the execution of about 8,000 Bosnian men and boys and the mass expulsion of a further 25,000–30,000 Bosniak civilians, in and around the town of Srebrenica in Bosnia and Herzegovina and committed by units of the Serbian-backed Army of the Republika Srpska (VRS) under the command of war criminal General Ratko Mladić (about 200,000 Muslim Bosnians, Catholic Croats, Orthodox Serbs and Muslim Kosovans died in the Balkans War in the former Yugoslavia).

Yemeni Genocide: US and Saudi Coalition intervention against the Houthis in the now-starving Yemen (population 27.5 million, 2016) has been associated (2015-2017) with 10,000 violent deaths (UN 2016), 2.4 million Internally Displaced People IDPs , 1.0 million Yemeni refugees, and 111,000 avoidable deaths pa from deprivation exacerbated by naval blockade impacting 80% of the population (about 200,000 such deaths). Yemen (as well a Nigeria, South Sudan and Somalia) is gripped by catastrophic famine with 17 million food insecure and 7 million severely food insecure.

Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust : the above atrocities are dwarfed by the 1950-2005 excess deaths from deprivation in the mostly post-colonial Muslim World that totalled 0.6 billion (see my book "Body Count. Global voidable mortality since 1950" , G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007, and "Global avoidable mortality": http://globalavoidablemortality.blogspot.com/ ).

Climate Holocaust, Climate Genocide : man-made global warming increasingly impacts the current 18 million annual avoidable deaths from deprivation and deprivation-exacerbated disease estimates from top UK climate scientists Dr James Lovelock and Professor Kevin Anderson point to 10 billion avoidable deaths this century due to unaddressed global warming, this including 6 billion infants, 3 billion Muslims in a near-terminal, 21st century Muslim Holocaust , 2 billion Indians, 1.3 billion non-Arab Africans, 0.5 billion Bengalis, 0.3 billion Pakistanis and 0.3 billion Bangladeshis) (see “Climate Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/climategenocide/ ).

Aboriginal Holocaust, Aboriginal Genocide (the Australian Indigenous population dropped from circa 1 million to 0.1 million in the first century post-invasion currently 9,000 Aborigines die avoidably each year, mostly from horrendous neglect, out of an Indigenous population of 0.5 million Apartheid Australia is involved in all the above ongoing holocausts and genocides, has an appalling secret genocide history: http://mwcnews.net/content/view/22128/42/ , is the world’s worst annual per capita greenhouse gas polluter, and helped the US sabotage the vital Copenhagen Climate Conference): http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/ . Family connections between Northern Territory aborigines and Muslim Indonesia were cut off by racist White Australia in 1901.

The appalling November 2015 Paris atrocity (130 killed) has led Hollande and Obama to call for the destruction of Islamic State ( i.e. genocide as defined by the UN Genocide Convention). A major report by 3 physician organizations recently estimated that 2 million Muslims had died violently in the US War on Terror but 2015 UN Population Division data show that Muslim avoidable deaths from deprivation in countries subject to Western military intervention in 2001-2015 now total about 27 million, this demanding peace now and ICC prosecutions of those responsible for this Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide (see Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide: http://www.countercurrents.org/polya221115A.htm Gideon Polya, “Paris Atrocity Context: 27 Million Muslim Avoidable Deaths From Imposed Deprivation In 20 Countries Violated By US Alliance Since 9-11”, Countercurrents, 22 November, 2015: http://www.countercurrents.org/polya221115A.htm ) .

Muslim refugees now (2015) total over 30 million, the breakdown including Syrians (12 million), Palestinians (7 million), Iraqis (6 million), Rohingyas ( 2 million), Pakistanis (2 million), Somalis (2 million), Libyans (1 million), Central African Republic (0.5 million), Yemen (2.4 million) .

The dominant Western economic model of Neoliberalism is about maximizing the freedom of the One Percenters to exploit the human and physical resources of the world and thereby impose on the Ninetynine Percenters i.e. making such impositions perfectly legal even if such impositions involve genocide, noting that genocide is defined by Article 2 of the UN Genocide Convention as “acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group”. By way of example, the post-1990 Iraqi Genocide (4.7 million deaths from violence, 1.7 million, or from imposed deprivation, 2.9 million, and refugees totalling 5-6 million) is seen by experts from the Left to the Right to be about oil. Thus Professor Noam Chomsky from 85-Nobel-Laureate MIT has stated (2009) that “There is basically no significant change in the fundamental traditional conception that if we can control Middle East energy resources, then we can control the world” and Alan Greenspan (who served as chairman of the US Federal Reserve for almost two decades) has stated (2007) “I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil”. Similarly, the Syrian Genocide (0.5 million killed violently, a comparable number killed by war-imposed deprivation, and 12 million refugees) evidently derives from the implacable desire of the US Alliance – the US, UK, France, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel, and Turkey – to remove the secular Assad regime to permit a “Sunni” gas pipeline from Qatar to the Mediterranean and thence to Europe so as to compete with Russian gas. The US Alliance Afghan Holocaust and Afghan Genocide (5.6 million war-related deaths from violence, 1.4 million, or war-imposed deprivation, 4.2 million, 3-4 million refugees) is to do with a Central Asian gas pipeline to a US-dominated Indian Ocean. The France-Uk-US (FUKUS) Coalition's Libyan Genocide (0.1 million killed, a comparable number dead from deprivation and 1 million refugees) was about fossil fuel resources and destroyed Africa’s most prosperous country. The US-backed Saudi Coalition’s Yemeni Genocide (0.2 million deaths from deprivation, a likely comparable number of violent deaths and 2.4 million refugees) is about Sunni control of the Red Sea carbon fuel resource route.

Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity.

Please use this holocaust and genocide terminology and please inform everyone you can.

Please use this resource to inform everyone you can about these ongoing atrocities against Humanity.

A powerful example of Mainstream Lying by Omission about the ongoing Muslim Holocaust is given by the Deafening Silence from Mainstream journalist, politician, academic and commentariat presstitutes in response to the following Letter sent to thousands worldwide about the new book “US-imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide” by Gideon Polya (for a comprehensive list of this and other man-made famine, holocaust and genocide atrocities, together with deaths from violence and imposed deprivation and provided in the Epilogue of this book, see “Report Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/reportgenocide/list-of-holocausts-and-genocides ).

New book: Climate Genocide & Muslim Holocaust

2 decades in the making, my 400 page, science-informed, humanitarian book has just been published in Germany - Gideon Maxwell Polya, “US-imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide”, Korsgaard Publishing, Germany, 2020 (for details see: https://korsgaardpublishing.com/portfolio/23945/ and https://www.amazon.com/US-Imposed-Post-9-Muslim-Holocaust-Genocide/dp/8793987056 ).

A picture says a thousand words - for a complete image of my big “Manhattan Madonna” painting (1.3 x 2.9 metres) that was used for the front and back cover of the book see: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/3429196820/in/set-72157616584873236/ .

See also my huge painting for West-Muslim World friendship entitled “Isfahan Matisse”: https://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/4290121654 .

While the terms “holocaust”, “genocide” and “Geneva Convention observance” are precisely defined, the terminology and shocking underlying substance of most of the chapter headings (see below) are overwhelmingly ignored by Western Mainstream politicians, academics and journalists in a process of ongoing holocaust ignoring and genocide ignoring that is far, far worse than repugnant holocaust denial and genocide denial because the latter at least permit refutation and public debate.

This appalling catalogue of human suffering and premature death in the 21st century Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide should be considered in the context of atrocities in the 20th century and earlier. The Epilogue succinctly, quantitatively and comprehensively details deaths from violence and deprivation in man-made famines, holocausts, and genocides from the 19th century Irish Famine, the “forgotten” 1757-1947 Indian Holocaust, and the “forgotten” WW2 Bengali Holocaust to the 21st century Muslim Holocaust, and including the worsening Climate Genocide (Chapters 1, 19 & 21) and the ongoing Australian Aboriginal Genocide that is quantitatively compared with the ongoing Palestinian Genocide in Chapter 16.

Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity. We are obliged to bear witness. Please tell everyone you can.

Yours sincerely, Dr Gideon Polya, Melbourne, Australia

Table of Contents

Foreword by S. Korsgaard: Accountability and Freedom of Press……iii

Foreword by K. Barrett: Holocaust Studies…………….……………..xx

Introductory Comments by G. Polya………………….……….……. xxvi

Chapter 1: Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust…..………..……. 3

Chapter 2: Mainstream media fake news through lying by omission. 17

Chapter 3: “Forgotten” WW2 Bengali Holocaust (1942-1945)……. 27

Chapter 4: American Empire (1776-)………………………………. 41

Chapter 5: US state terrorism & 9-11 (2001-)………………………..53

Chapter 6: Afghan Holocaust & Afghan Genocide (2001-)………….65

Chapter 7: Iraqi Holocaust & Iraqi Genocide (1990-2011)…………..77

Chapter 8: Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide (2001-)…………89

Chapter 9: Libyan Genocide (2011-)…………………………………111

Chapter 10: Iranian Holocaust & Iranian Genocide (1978-)…………125

Chapter 11: Iraqi Genocide resumed (2012-)………………………. 143

Chapter 12: Syrian Holocaust & Syrian Genocide (2012-)…………..157

Chapter 13: Somali Holocaust & Somali Genocide (1992-)…………191

Chapter 14: Yemeni Genocide (2015-)…………………………….…203

Chapter 15: Opiate Holocaust (2001-)…………………………….….219

Chapter 16: Palestinian Genocide (1916-)……………………………235

Chapter 17: Indian Avoidable Mortality Holocaust (1757-)………….261

Chapter 18: Rohingya Genocide (2016-)………………………….….275

Chapter 19: Air pollution deaths…………………………………..….293

Chapter 20: American Holocaust…………………………………..…307

Chapter 21: Climate Genocide & War on Terra……………………. 321

Chapter 22: War on Truth……………………………………………..339

War is the penultimate in racism and genocide the ultimate in racism. It is very powerful to quote expert opinion. Thus eminent physicist Stephen Hawking on the key existential threats facing Humanity (2018): “We see great peril if governments and societies do not take action now to render nuclear weapons obsolete and to prevent further climate change” (Stephen Hawking, “Brief Answers to the Big Questions”, John Murray, 2018, Chapter 7). Most of the following websites alphabetically list expert opinions in 4 inter-connected key areas, namely “End war and genocide”, “Free Palestine”, “Reverse climate change”, and “Stop lying and censorship”. Everyone is invited to make use of this substantial resource and to feel free to disseminate this list to everyone they can.


To HARRAK - Muslim invaders killed Hindus in millions

With the invasion of India by Mahmud Ghazni about 1000 A.D., began the one of the worst Muslim invasions into the Indian subcontinent and they lasted for several centuries. The Muslim invasions continued even when the Muslims were ruling India, like the invasion of the Mongols during the reign of the Khiljis or the invasion of the Mughals in the early sixteenth Century when the Lodis were ruling Delhi. The last notable invasion of the Muslims from outside was the invasion of Nadir Shah in 1739, during which he unleashed a great horror on the native population.

During these seven hundred years of Muslim invasions and their conquest and rule of India, the Hindus were the greatest sufferers. It is difficult to estimate the number of Hindus who lost their lives during these campaigns, the number of Hindus who lost their lives in the religious persecution perpetrated on the native population by the Muslim rulers or the number of Hindus who were forcibly converted to Islam.

According to Prof. K.S. Lal, the author of the Growth of Muslim population in India, the Hindu population decreased by 80 million between 1000 AD, the year Mahmud Ghazni invaded India and 1525 AD, a year before the battle of Panipat.

One can safely add another 20 million Hindus to this list to account for the number that were killed during the Mughal rule or the rule of the Muslim rulers in the Deccan plateau. By all known accounts of world history, as pointed out by Koenard Elst in his book the Negationism in India, destruction of about 100 million hindus is perhaps the biggest holocaust in the whole world history.

Europe never forgot or forgave the atrocities of the Nazi rule under Hitler. We hardly come across any positive reference to either Hitler or his army in the present day text books on European History. No one talks there of the qualities of Hitler as a great commander or an inspiring leader of German people whom he could mould and influence with his hypnotic speeches. No films are made showing Hitler as a romantic hero singing songs and his mistress as a heroine shedding copious tears over her lover! The European consciousness is filled with the evil deeds perpetrated by his regime, thanks to the untiring work of their politicians, journalists, historians and film producers, so much so that the very thought of seeing any virtue in either Hitler or Nazis is abhorrent to the consciousness of the present day Europeans. Europe and America produced at least a few thousand films highlighting the human misery caused by Hitler and his army. The films expose the horrors of Nazi regime and reinforce the beliefs and attitude of the present day generation towards the evils of the Nazi dictatorship.

In contrast look at the Muslims. There is hardly any regret among the Muslims of today for the actions of their ancestors in the past or at present, and a great majority of muhammedans think that they did the right thing by persecuting Hindus and they continue to do so today. All their heroes are rapists, murderers and looters from their leader mulammed to osama bin laden.

It is not difficult to imagine the sufferings of people during such battles as the battle of Tallikota when Hampi, the capital of Vijayanagara empire was systematically destroyed for weeks by the muslim Bahamain sultans. Nadir Shah made a mountain of the skulls of the Hindus he killed in Delhi alone. Babur raised towers of Hindu skulls at Khanua when he defeated Rana Sanga in 1527 and later he repeated the same horrors after capturing the fort of Chanderi. Akbar who was supposed to be one of the few tolerant muslim rulers, ordered a general massacre of 30000 Rajputs after he captured Chithor in 1568. The Bahamani Sultans had an annual agenda of killing a minimum of 100000 Hindus every year. The history of medieval India is full of such instances.

Harrak, if you are unaware with the history of the Indian subcontinent you should study it. I have put some material for you below. We hindus have not appointed Salman Rushdie or American intellectuals to rewrite history for us. The history repeats itself in the actions of our arch eneny the muslim Pakistan who is sponsoring killing of Hindus inside india even today. Todays hindus are strong and determined enough to make any muslim who tries to attack her bite the dust. Pakistan tried four times and failed.

Short course on History for HARRAK

Several reasons existed for the desire of the rising Islamic Empire to gain a foothold in Makran and Sind ranging from the participation of armies from sindh fighting alongside the Persians in battles such as Nehawand, &lsquoSalasal&rsquo, Qadisia and Makran, to pirate raids on Arab shipping to the granting of refuge to rebel chiefs.

Islam in India existed in communities along the Arab trade routes in Sindh, Ceylon and Southern India. In 711, the Umayyad Caliph in Damascus sent an expedition to Baluchistan (an arid region on the Iranian Plateau in Southwest Asia, presently split between Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan) and Sindh (presently a province of Pakistan bordering on Baluchistan, Punjab, and Rajasthan, India). The nature of the expedition was punitive, and in response to raids carried out by pirates on Arab shipping, operating around Daibul. The allegation was made that The King of Sindh, Raja Dahir was the patron of these pirates. The expedition was led by a 20-year-old Syrian chieftain named Muhammad bin Qasim (for whom Karachi's second port is named). The expedition went as far North as Multan, then called the "City of Gold," that contained the extremely large Hindu temple Sun Mandir housing over six thousand people. Bin Qasim invaded the sub-continent at the orders of Al-Hajjaj bin Yousef, the governor of Iraq. Qasim's armies defeated Raja Dahir at what is now Hyderabad in Sindh in 712. He then proceeded to subdue the lands from Karachi to Multan with a small force of only six thousand Syrian tribesmen, therby establishing the dominion of the Umayyad Caliphate from Lisbon in Portugal to the Indus Valley. Qasim was later recalled to Baghdad, and Muslim rule in South Asia shrank to Sindh and southern Punjab.

In many regions North of Multan, several non-Muslim groups (largely Buddhists and Hindus, as well as followers of folk religions further North) remained numerous. From this period through the year 1000, the conquered area was divided into two parts: the northern region comprising the Punjab remained under the control of Hindu rajas, while the Southern area came under Muslim control and comprised Baluchistan, Sindh, and Multan.

Qasim demolished many temples, shattered "idolatorous" artwork and killing many people in his battles. After the violence, he attempted to establish law and order in the newly-conquered territory through the imposition of Islamic Shariah laws. He also sought control through systematic persecution of Hindus. He wrote an account of such experiences:

O my cousin I received your life inspiring letter. I was much pleased and overjoyed when it reached me. The events were recounted in an excellent and beautiful style, and I learnt that the ways and rules you follow are conformable to the Law. Except that you give protection to all, great and small alike, and make no difference between enemy and friend. God says, 'Give no quarter to Infidels, but cut their throats." "Then know that this is the command of the great God. You should not be too ready to grant protection, because it will prolong your work. After this, give no quarter to any enemy except to those who are of rank. This is a worthy resolve, and want of dignity will not be imputed to you. Peace be with you. [1]
Native populations of conquered territories under Qasim underwent a great deal of hardship and struggle for their refusal to convert to Islam. Taxes known as Jizya were imposed upon non-Muslims replacing other taxes under the dhimmi status of non-Muslim subjects to Islamic rulers. Substantial religious conversions are also reported to have occurred in this period. While all sources agree to widespread bloodshed during the period of the conquests, traditional historical narrative indicates a period of tolerance in the aftermath, however the nature of these conversion and all future conversions are currently hotly debated by proponents of theory of conversion by the sword and those against it and counter allegations are levelled against the hindu Raja Dahir for atrocities against the predominant local buddhist and jat populace and subsequent relief which paint Qasim as a liberator.

Ghazni was a city-state founded in 962 founded Alptigin, once a slave then a Governor of Khorasan eventually divested of power in political intrigues. Under his son-in-law Subuktigin, Ghazni found itself in conflict with the Shahi Raja Jayapala. When Subuktigin died and his son Mahmud ascended the throne in 998, Mahmud was engaged in the North with the Qarakhanid Empire when the Shahi Raja renewed hostilities.

In the early 11th century Mahmud of Ghazni launched 17 expeditions into India. In 1001, Sultan Mahmud Ghaznavi defeated King Jeebal of Kabulistan and marched further into Peshawar and in 1005 made it the center for his forces. From this strategic location Mahmud was able to capture the Punjab in 1007. In 1010, Mahmud captured what is today the Ghowr Province (Ghor) and by 1011 had annexed Baluchistan. Tanseer fell in 1014, Kashmir was captured in 1015, and Qanouch fell in 1017. After defeating Tarnochalpal in 1021, Mahmud formally annexed Punjab. Mahmud of Ghazni sacked Multan twice, destroying the Surya Mandir (Sun Temple). Surya Mandir also known as Somnath, was also allegedly serving the purpose of a war-room of the Rajput Confederacy opposing Mahmud in addition to being a repository of immense wealth.

The Ghaznavid Jihads were directed onto richness of the loot of wealthy temples and monastaries. By 1027, Mahmud had captured most of Northern India and obtained formal recognition of Ghazni's sovreignity from the Abbasid Khalifah, al-Qadir Billah.

Mahmud had already had relationships with the leadership in Balkh through marriage, and its local emir, Abu Nasr Mohammad, offered his services to the sultan and his daughter to Mahmud's son, Muhammad. After Nasr&rsquos death Mahmud brought Balkh under his leadership. This alliance greatly helped him during his expeditions into Northern India.

Ghaznavid rule in North India lasted over 175 years, from 1010 to 1187. It was during this period that Lahore assumed considerable importance as the eastern-most bastion of Muslim power and an outpost for further advance toward the riches of the east. Apart from being the second capital, and later the only capital, of the Ghaznavid kingdom, Lahore had great military and strategic significance: whoever controlled it could look forward to sweeping the whole of East Punjab to Panipat and Delhi.

By the end of his reign, Mahmud's empire extended from Kurdistan in the west to Samarkand in the Northeast, and from the Caspian Sea to the Yamuna. Although his raids carried his forces across Northern and Western India, only Punjab came under his permanent rule Kashmir, the Doab, Rajasthan, and Gujarat remained under the control of the local Rajput dynasties. The wealth brought back to Ghazni was enormous. Contemporary historians (e.g. Abolfazl Beyhaghi and Ferdowsi) give glowing descriptions of the magnificence of the capital and the conqueror's munificent support of literature.

In 1030, Mahmud fell gravely ill and died at age 59. He had been a gifted military commander and Islam was the enforced religion of his kingdom and the Perso-Afghan dialect Dari was made the official language.

Like other muslim rulers, Mahmud left behind a bitter legacy of genocide and persecution of all who refused forced-conversion to Islam. As with the Turkic invaders of three centuries ago, Mahmud's armies looted and desecrated temples in Varanasi, Mathura, Ujjain, Maheshwar, Jwalamukhi, and Dwarka. There is some evidence from writings of Al-Biruni, Sogidan, Uighur and Manichean texts that the Buddhists, Hindus and Jains were accepted as People of the Book and references to Buddha as Burxan or a prophet can be found. After much initial destruction, genocide and pillage some Buddhists, Jains and Hindus were grudgingly given protected subject status as dhimmis, although they were still subject to the humiliating and persecuting Jizya tax.

Muhammad Ghori was a Turkic-Afghan conqueror from the region of Ghor in Afghanistan. Before 1160, the Ghaznavid Empire covered an area running from central Afghanistan east to the Punjab, with capitals at Ghazni on the banks of Ghazni river in present-day Afghanistan, and at Lahore in present-day Pakistan. In 1160, the Ghorids conquered Ghazni from the Ghaznevids, and in 1173 Muhammad was made governor of Ghazni. He raided eastwards into the remaining Ghaznevid territory, and invaded Gujarat in the 1180s but was rebuffed by Gujarat's Solanki rulers. In 1186 and 1187 he conquered Lahore, ending the Ghaznevid empire and bringing the last of Ghaznevid territory under his control, and seemed to be the first Muslim ruler seriously interested in expanding his domain in the sub-continent, and like his predecessor Mahmud initially started off against the Ismaili Shiite kingdom that had regained independence during the Nizari conflicts, and then onto booty and power.

In 1191, he invaded the territory of Prithviraj III of Ajmer, who ruled much of present-day Rajasthan and Haryana, but was defeated at Tarain by Govinda-Raja of Delhi, Prithviraj's vassal. The following year, Muhammad assembled 120,000 horsemen and once again invaded the Kingdom of Ajmer. Muhammad's army met Prithviraj's army again at Tarain, and this time Muhammad won Govinda-Raja was slain, Prithviraj captured and Muhammad advanced onto Delhi. Within a year, Muhammad controlled Northern Rajasthan and Northern Ganges-Yamuna Doab. After these victories in India, and Muhammad's establishment of a capital in Delhi, Multan was also incorporated into his empire. Muhammad then returned east to Ghazni to deal with the threat on his eastern frontiers from the Turks and Mongols, whiles his armies continued to advance through Northern India, raiding as far east as Bengal.

Muhammad returned to Lahore after 1200 to deal with a revolt of the Ghakkar tribe in the Punjab. He suppressed the revolt, but was killed during a Ghakkar raid on his camp on the Jhelum River in 1206. Upon his death his most capable general, Qutb-ud-din Aybak, took control of Muhammad's Indian conquests and declared himself the first Sultan of Delhi.

Muhammad's successors established the first dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate, while the Mamluk Dynasty in 1211 (however, the Delhi Sultanate is traditionally held to have been founded in 1206) seized the reins of the empire. Mamluk means "slave" and referred to the Turkic slave soldiers who became rulers. The territory under control of the Muslim rulers in Delhi expanded rapidly. By mid-century, Bengal and much of central India was under the Delhi Sultanate. Several Turko-Afghan dynasties ruled from Delhi: the Mamluk (1211&ndash1290), the Khalji (1290&ndash1320), the Tughlaq (1320&ndash1413), the Sayyid (1414&ndash51), and the Lodhi (1451&ndash1526). Muslim Kings extended their domains into Southern India, Kingdom of Vijayanagar resisted until falling to the Deccan Sultanate in 1565. Although some kingdoms remained independent of Delhi in the Deccan and in Gujarat, Malwa (central India), and Bengal, almost all of the area in present-day Pakistan came under the rule of Delhi.

The Sultans of Delhi enjoyed cordial, if superficial, relations with Muslim rulers in the Near East but owed them no allegiance. They based their laws on the Quran and the sharia and permitted non-Muslim subjects to practice their religion only if they paid the jizya (head tax). They ruled from urban centers, while military camps and trading posts provided the nuclei for towns that sprang up in the countryside.

Perhaps the greatest contribution of the Sultanate was its temporary success in insulating the subcontinent from the potential devastation of the Mongol invasion from Central Asia in the 13th century, which nonetheless led to the capture of Afghanistan and western Pakistan by the Mongols (see the Ilkhanate Dynasty). The Sultanate ushered in a period of Indian cultural renaissance, The resulting "Indo-Muslim" fusion left lasting monuments in architecture, music, literature, and religion. In addition it is surmised that the language of Urdu (literally meaning "horde" or "camp" in various Turkic dialects) was born during the Dehli Sultanate period as a result of the mingling of Sanskritic Hindi and the Persian, Turkish, Arabic favored by the Muslim invaders of India.

The Sultanate suffered from the sacking of Delhi in 1398 by Timur (Tamerlane) but revived briefly under the Lodhis before it was conquered by the Mughals in 1526, who ruled from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries.

Other invasions from Central Asia followed his on a regular basis, such as that of Muhammad Khilji, who burned Nalanda, a major Buddhist library. The rulers of these territories became known as the Mughals and their empire as the Mughal Empire.

The Khilji Dynasty is not affiliated politically with the Mughal Dynasty, which started in the 1500s under Babur.


The Mughal Empire
India in the 16th century presented a fragmented picture of rulers, both Muslim and Hindu, who lacked concern for their subjects and failed to create a common body of laws or institutions. Outside developments also played a role in shaping events. The circumnavigation of Africa by the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama in 1498 allowed Europeans to challenge Arab control of the trading routes between Europe and Asia. In Central Asia and Afghanistan, shifts in power pushed Babur of Ferghana (in present-day Uzbekistan) southward, first to Kabul and then to India. The dynasty he founded endured for more than three centuries.

Main article: Babur
Claiming descent from both Genghis Khan and Timur, Babur combined strength and courage with a love of beauty, and military ability with cultivation. He concentrated on gaining control of Northwestern India, doing so in 1526 by defeating the last Lodhi Sultan at the First battle of Panipat, a town north of Delhi. Babur then turned to the tasks of persuading his Central Asian followers to stay on in India and of overcoming other contenders for power, mainly the Rajputs and the Afghans. He succeeded in both tasks but died shortly thereafter in 1530. The Mughal Empire was one of the largest centralized states in premodern history and was the precursor to the British Indian Empire.

Babur was followed by his great-grandson, Shah Jahan (r. 1628&ndash58), builder of the Taj Mahal and other magnificent buildings. Two other towering figures of the Mughal era were Akbar (r. 1556&ndash1605) and Aurangzeb (r. 1658&ndash1707). Both rulers expanded the empire greatly and were able administrators. However, Akbar was known for his religious tolerance and administrative genius while Aurangzeb was a pious Muslim and fierce advocate of more orthodox Islam.

While some rulers were zealous in their spread of Islam, others were relatively liberal. Moghul emperor Akbar was relatively liberal and established a new religion, Din E Elahi, which included beliefs from different religions. He abolished the jizya for some time. In contrast, his great-grandson Aurangazeb was more zealous and, generally, during his term non-Muslims suffered. He reimposed the jizya, and it is historically recorded that under his rule a large number of natives were put to death.

In the century-and-a-half that followed the death of Aurangzeb, effective Muslim control weakened. Succession to imperial and even provincial power, which had often become hereditary, was subject to intrigue and force. The mansabdari system gave way to the zamindari system, in which high-ranking officials took on the appearance of hereditary landed aristocracy with powers of collecting rents. As Delhi's control waned, other contenders for power emerged and clashed, thus preparing the way for the eventual British takeover.


Decay of the Mughal power saw a series of invasions by the Persian adventurer, Nadir Shah, but no occupation per se. Following his death (something his Royal Guardsman Abdali might have contributed to), Ahmed Shah Abdali - a Pathan - decided to try his luck closer to home. The fertile Punjab was the nearest and easiest prey. A long and brutal occupation of the Punjab - reviled by Sikhs, Hindus and Punjabi Muslims - lasted till the rise of the Sikh Empire.

In 1193, the Nalanda University complex was destroyed by Turkish Muslim invaders under Bakhtiyar Khalji this event is seen as the final milestone in the decline and near extinction of Buddhism in India. He also burned Nalanda's a major Buddhist library and Vikramshila University, as well as numerous Bhuddhist monasteries in India. When the Tibetan translator, Chag Lotsawa Dharmasvamin (Chag Lo-tsa-ba, 1197 - 1264), visited northern India in 1235, Nalanda was damaged, looted, and largely deserted, but still standing and functioning with seventy students. Mahabodhi, Sompura, Vajrasan and other important monastaries were luckily untouched. The Ghuri ravages only afflicted those monastaries that lay in the direct of their advance.

By the end of the 12th century, following the Islamic conquest of the Buddhist stronghold in Bihar, Buddhism declined as survivors retreated to Nepal, Sikkim and Tibet or escaped to the South of the sub-continent. Hinduism and Jainism survived because they did not have large centers of worship and devotion based around heavily fortified monastaries. Furthermore, many buddhist also converted for social mobility from their status as lower castes in the hindu view. Under the tutelage of various scholars fleeing the ravages of the Mongols, and with a historically extensive familiarity with buddhists in Central Asia many impoverished peasants in East Bengal converted.

The city flourished between the 14th century and 16th century, during the height of the Vijayanagar Empire. During this time, it was often in conflict with the moslem kingdoms which rose in the Northern Deccan, and which are often collectively termed the Deccan Sultanates. In 1565, the empire's armies suffered a massive and catastrophic defeat at by an alliance of the Sultanates, and the capital was taken. The victorious armies then razed, depopulated the hindu population (genocide) and destroyed the city over several months. The empire continued in slow decline, but the original capital was not reoccupied or rebuilt.

The first temple of Somnath is said to have existed before the beginning of the Christian era. The second temple, built by the Maitraka kings of Vallabhi in Gujarat, replaced the first one on the same site around 649. In 725 Junayad, the Arab governor of Sind, sent his armies to destroy the second temple. The Pratihara king Nagabhata II constructed the third temple in 815, a large structure of red sandstone. Mahmud of Ghazni attacked this temple in 1026, looted its gems and precious stones, massacred the worshippers and burned it. It was then that the famous Shivalinga of the temple was entirely destroyed. The fourth temple was built by the Paramara King Bhoj of Malwa and the Solanki king Bhima of Gujarat (Anhilwara) between 1026 and 1042. The temple was razed in 1297 when the Sultanate of Delhi conquered Gujarat, and again in 1394. Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb destroyed the temple again in 1706.

French historian Alain Danielou wrote in his book Histoire de l'Inde:

From the moment when the Muslims arrive in India, the history of India does not have any more great interest. It is long and monotonous series of murder, massacres, spoilations, destruction.
French Historian Gustave Le Bon wrote in his book Les Civilisations de L'Inde:

There does not exist a history of ancient India. Their books contain no historical data whatever, except for a few religious books in which historical information is buried under a heap of parables and folk-lore, and their buildings and other monuments also do nothing to fill the void for the oldest among them do not go beyond the third century B.C. To discover facts about India of the ancient times is as difficult a task as the discovery of the island of Atlantis, which, according to Plato, was destroyed due to the changes of the earth. The historical phase of India began with the Muslim invasion. Muslims were India's first historians and were not critical of the muslim invasions.So many of the atrocities against the local hindu population was largely unrecorded


Historian Will Durant wrote his book The Story of Civilization:

The Mohammadan conquest of India is probably the bloodiest story in history. It is a discouraging tale, for its evident moral is that civilization is a precarious thing, whose delicate complex of order and liberty, culture and peace may at any time be overthrown by barbarians invading from without or multiplying within.
Hindu sage Padmanabha described in his KanhaDade Prabandha in 1456 AD the story of the Islamic invasion of Gujarat of 1298 AD:

The conquering army burnt villages, devastated the land, plundered people&rsquos wealth, took Brahmins ( priestly hindu class ) and children and women of all classes captive, flogged with thongs of raw hide, carried a moving prison with it, and converted the prisoners into obsequious slaves.
Tarikh-i-Yamini of Utbi the sultan's secretary wrote in the 11th century:The blood of the infidels flowed so copiously at Thanesar that the stream was discoloured, notwithstanding its purity, and people were unable to drink it. The Sultan returned with plunder which is impossible to count.

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US soldiers pose with the bodies of Moro insurgents, Philippines, 1906

The bodies of Moro insurgents and civilians killed by US troops during the Battle of Bud Dajo in the Philippines, March 7, 1906.

The First Battle of Bud Dajo, also known as the Bud Dajo Massacre, was a counter insurgency action fought by the United States Army against Moros in March 1906, during the Moro Rebellion phase of the Philippine–American War. After the United States revoked the Bates Treaty in March 1904, the Moros renewed their resistance to American authority. This took form of sporadic violence and refusal to pay taxes. The Governor of Moro Province, Major General Leonard Wood, had been unsuccessful in efforts to pacify the insurgents in Jolo Island. Consequently, Moro attacks became more frequent, and the insurgents came to believe that the Americans were too weak to stop them.

In response to rumors that the Americans planned to exterminate them, several hundred Moros, including women and children, moved to Bud Dajo, where legend held that spirits at the site would help warriors in times of need. Bud Dajo, the crater of an extinct volcano, is about six miles from the city of Jolo. Rising some 2,100 feet with steep, heavily jungled slopes, it was accessible only by three narrow paths. As such, it provided an easily defender position and was well stocked with provisions.

When negotiations between several friendly datus (chiefs) and hostile Moros failed to bring about the surrender of the insurgents, Wood commenced a campaign on March 5, 1906, to end the standoff at Bud Dajo. He sent U.S. and Philippine Constabulary troops under Colonel Joseph W. Duncan to put down the insurgents. Meanwhile, another attempt to negotiate ended in failure on March 6. As their artillery bombarded Bud Dajo to weaken resistance, the attackers hacked their way through the dense jungle and up the slope. On the evening of March 6, Duncan’s men paused midway up the mountain and bivouacked for the night. In the darkness, Moro drums and chanting could be heard from the crate, while Moro snipers periodically fired at the troops.

The following day, the advance up the summit continued as American artillery fired ineffectively at the defenders. On March 7, while taking heavy casualties, many of the Moros feigned death and then attempted to ambush Duncan’s forces when they neared the top of the mountain. The Americans troops then attacked the cottas (forts) and the other Moro positions, taking Bud Dajo on March 8. Once the outer rim has been secured, artillery and machine guns were employed. As Wood reported: “All the defenders were killed as near as could be counted”.

In the battle, 18 Americans lost their lives, and another 52 were wounded. Wood estimated the number of enemy dead at 600, including women and children, although some estimates ran as high as 900. Corpses were piled five deep, and many of the bodies were wounded multiple times. Only seven were captured, three women and four children. Eighteen men escaped from the mountain, and it is possible this number could have been double. Wood censored the telegrams from Jolo describing the casualties.

Although U.S. authorities considered the Battle of Bud Dajo to be a significant victory and commended Wood for his actions, some in the U.S. press viewed it a little more than a massacre, particularly given the deaths of so many noncombatants. Moro practice was for warriors to take their wives and children with them, but some in the press said that Wood should merely laid siege to the mountain. Wood’s friend, Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, sent him a congratulatory telegram, and Secretary of War William Howard Taft also approved.

In response to criticism, Wood’s explanation of the high number of women and children killed stated that the women of Bud Dajo dressed as men and joined in the combat, and that the men used children as living shields. A second explanation was given by the Governor-General of the Philippines, Henry Clay Ide, who reported that the women and children were collateral damage, having been killed during the artillery barrages. These conflicting explanations of the high number of women and child casualties brought accusations of a cover-up, adding to the criticism.

The controversy soon died down, as local datus and the sultan of Sulu, religious leader of the region, believed that the action at Bud Dajo would bring about long-term stability. Unfortunately, Moro resistance continued, leading to another Bud Dajo Campaign in 1911 and the Battle of Bud Bagsak in June 1913.


Islamic-invasion of india the greatest genocide in history

The genocide suffered by the Hindus and Sikhs of India at the hands of Arab, Turkish, Mughal and Afghan occupying forces for a period of 800 years is as yet formally unrecognised by the World.

The only similar genocide in the recent past was that of the Jewish people at the hands of the Nazis.

The holocaust of the Hindus in India was of even greater proportions, the only difference was that it continued for 800 years, till the brutal regimes were effectively overpowered in a life and death struggle by the Sikhs in the Punjab and the Hindu Maratha armies in other parts of India in the late 1700’s.

We have elaborate literary evidence of the World’s biggest holocaust from existing historical contemporary eyewitness accounts. The historians and biographers of the invading armies and subsequent rulers of India have left quite detailed records of the atrocities they committed in their day-to-day encounters with India’s Hindus.

Paintings by Edwin Lord Weeks.

These contemporary records boasted about and glorified the crimes that were committed – and the genocide of tens of millions of Hindus, mass rapes of Hindu women and the destruction of thousands of ancient Hindu / Buddhist temples and libraries have been well documented and provide solid proof of the World’s biggest holocaust.

Dr. Koenraad Elst in his article “Was There an Islamic Genocide of Hindus?” states:

“There is no official estimate of the total death toll of Hindus at the hands of Islam. A first glance at important testimonies by Muslim chroniclers suggests that, over 13 centuries and a territory as vast as the Subcontinent, Muslim Holy Warriors easily killed more Hindus than the 6 million of the Holocaust. Ferishtha lists several occasions when the Bahmani sultans in central India (1347-1528) killed a hundred thousand Hindus, which they set as a minimum goal whenever they felt like punishing the Hindus and they were only a third-rank provincial dynasty.

The biggest slaughters took place during the raids of Mahmud Ghaznavi (ca. 1000 CE) during the actual conquest of North India by Mohammed Ghori and his lieutenants (1192 ff.) and under the Delhi Sultanate (1206-1526).”

He also writes in his book “Negation in India”:

“The Muslim conquests, down to the 16th century, were for the Hindus a pure struggle of life and death. Entire cities were burnt down and the populations massacred, with hundreds of thousands killed in every campaign, and similar numbers deported as slaves. Every new invader made (often literally) his hills of Hindus skulls. Thus, the conquest of Afghanistan in the year 1000 was followed by the annihilation of the Hindu population the region is still called the Hindu Kush, i.e. Hindu slaughter.”

Will Durant argued in his 1935 book “The Story of Civilisation: Our Oriental Heritage” (page 459):

“The Mohammedan conquest of India is probably the bloodiest story in history. The Islamic historians and scholars have recorded with great glee and pride the slaughters of Hindus, forced conversions, abduction of Hindu women and children to slave markets and the destruction of temples carried out by the warriors of Islam during 800 AD to 1700 AD. Millions of Hindus were converted to Islam by sword during this period.”

Francois Gautier in his book ‘Rewriting Indian History’ (1996) wrote:

“The massacres perpetuated by Muslims in India are unparalleled in history, bigger than the Holocaust of the Jews by the Nazis or the massacre of the Armenians by the Turks more extensive even than the slaughter of the South American native populations by the invading Spanish and Portuguese.”

Writer Fernand Braudel wrote in A History of Civilisations (1995), that Islamic rule in India as a

“colonial experiment” was “extremely violent”, and “the Muslims could not rule the country except by systematic terror. Cruelty was the norm – burnings, summary executions, crucifixions or impalements, inventive tortures. Hindu temples were destroyed to make way for mosques. On occasion there were forced conversions. If ever there were an uprising, it was instantly and savagely repressed: houses were burned, the countryside was laid waste, men were slaughtered and women were taken as slaves.”

Alain Danielou in his book, Histoire de l’ Inde writes:

“From the time Muslims started arriving, around 632 AD, the history of India becomes a long, monotonous series of murders, massacres, spoliations, and destructions. It is, as usual, in the name of ‘a holy war’ of their faith, of their sole God, that the barbarians have destroyed civilizations, wiped out entire races.”

Irfan Husain in his article “Demons from the Past” observes:

“While historical events should be judged in the context of their times, it cannot be denied that even in that bloody period of history, no mercy was shown to the Hindus unfortunate enough to be in the path of either the Arab conquerors of Sindh and south Punjab, or the Central Asians who swept in from Afghanistan…The Muslim heroes who figure larger than life in our history books committed some dreadful crimes. Mahmud of Ghazni, Qutb-ud-Din Aibak, Balban, Mohammed bin Qasim, and Sultan Mohammad Tughlak, all have blood-stained hands that the passage of years has not cleansed..Seen through Hindu eyes, the Muslim invasion of their homeland was an unmitigated disaster.

“Their temples were razed, their idols smashed, their women raped, their men killed or taken slaves. When Mahmud of Ghazni entered Somnath on one of his annual raids, he slaughtered all 50,000 inhabitants. Aibak killed and enslaved hundreds of thousands. The list of horrors is long and painful. These conquerors justified their deeds by claiming it was their religious duty to smite non-believers. Cloaking themselves in the banner of Islam, they claimed they were fighting for their faith when, in reality, they were indulging in straightforward slaughter and pillage…”

A sample of contemporary eyewitness accounts of the invaders and rulers, during the Indian conquests.

The Afghan ruler Mahmud al-Ghazni invaded India no less than seventeen times between 1001 – 1026 AD. The book ‘Tarikh-i-Yamini’ – written by his secretary documents several episodes of his bloody military campaigns :

“The blood of the infidels flowed so copiously [at the Indian city of Thanesar] that the stream was discoloured, notwithstanding its purity, and people were unable to drink it…the infidels deserted the fort and tried to cross the foaming river…but many of them were slain, taken or drowned… Nearly fifty thousand men were killed.”

In the contemporary record – ‘ Taj-ul-Ma’asir’ by Hassn Nizam-i-Naishapuri, it is stated that when Qutb-ul- Din Aibak (of Turko – Afghan origin and the First Sultan of Delhi 1194-1210 AD) conquered Meerat, he demolished all the Hindu temples of the city and erected mosques on their sites. In the city of Aligarh, he converted Hindu inhabitants to Islam by the sword and beheaded all those who adhered to their own religion.

The Persian historian Wassaf writes in his book ‘Tazjiyat-ul-Amsar wa Tajriyat ul Asar’ that when the Alaul-Din Khilji (An Afghan of Turkish origin and second ruler of the Khilji Dynasty in India 1295-1316 AD) captured the city of Kambayat at the head of the gulf of Cambay, he killed the adult male Hindu inhabitants for the glory of Islam, set flowing rivers of blood, sent the women of the country with all their gold, silver, and jewels, to his own home, and made about twentv thousand Hindu maidens his private slaves.

India has a deep, long cultural history. Hinduism began there around 1,500 BC and Buddhism around the 6th century BC. This culture had evolved impressive intellectual, religious and artistic pursuits. Pre and post the early days of Islam, Indian scholars took their works in science, maths (zero, algebra, geometry, the decimal system, so-called ‘Arabic’ numbers are actually Hindu ones!), medicine, philosophy etc to the courts of others (including Muslims eg Baghdad).

Others came to study in India’s established universities. Indian children (boys and girls) were educated in the relatively widespread education system in a wide variety of subjects eg science, medicine and philosophy. India’s art and architecture was magnificent. They were a prosperous people. Then came Islam – slaughter, slavery, rape, violence, pillage destruction of religious sites, art and architecture poverty, exploitation, humiliation, famine, forced conversion, decline in intellectual pursuits, social destruction and a worsening of social ills. To Islam, anything that is not Islamic is from a time of ignorance –Jahiliyya- and must be destroyed (or appropriated and called Islam’s!). The onslaught created the Roma (gypsies), destroyed ‘Hindu’ Afghanistan and formed Pakistan (Kashmir) and Bangladesh .

The cost of the Muslim invasions is massive in lives, wealth and culture. Estimates suggest that 60-80 MILLION died at the hands of Muslim invaders and rulers between 1000 and 1525 alone (ie over 500 years-the population FELL). (Lal cited in Khan p 216) Impossible you think? In the war of Independence of Bangladesh, 1971, the Muslim Pakistani army killed 1.5-3 million people (mainly Muslims …) in just 9 MONTHS. (Khan p 216). The world looked the other way—but don’t we always when it’s Muslims committing the violence! [*The actual number of Hindus brutally slaughtered by Muslims were around 400 million, not 60-80 million, according to Firishta [1560-1620], the author of the Tarikh-i Firishta and the Gulshan-i Ibrahim].

Based on the figures that are available, the number of Indians enslaved is enormous!

The Muslim conquest of India was probably the bloodiest in history:

The Islamic historians and scholars have recorded with utmost glee and pride of the slaughters of Hindus, forced conversions, abduction of Hindu women and children to slave-markets, and the destruction of temples carried out by the warriors of Islam during 800AD to 1700 AD. Millions of Hindus were converted to Islam by the sword in this period” (historian Durant cited in Khan p 201)

And Rizwan Salim (1997) writes what the Arab invaders really did:

‘ savages at a very low level of civilisation and no culture worth the name, from Arabia and West Asia, began entering India from the early century onwards. Islamic invaders demolished countless Hindu temples, shattered uncountable sculpture and idols, plundered innumerable forts and palaces of Hindu kings, killed vast numbers of Hindu men and carried off Hindu women. ………but many Indians do not seem to recognize that the alien Muslim marauders destroyed the historical evolution of the earth’s most mentally advanced civilisation, the most richly imaginative culture, and the most vigorously creative society.” (cited in Khan p 179)

Of course Indians pre-Islam, fought, but it was NOT the practice to enslave or ravage, or massacre, or destroy religious sites, or damage crops and farmers. Battles were usually conducted on open soil between military personnel. (Khan p 205-207) There was no concept of ‘booty’ so Indians were unprepared for Islam’s onslaught. Indigenous Indians were forced to flee to jungles and mountains, or face gruelling exploitation and taxes, slaughter or enslavement while their society was demeaned and destroyed. Muslims constantly attacked the indigenous, idolatrous population and also fought against each other in ceaseless revolts by generals, chiefs and princes during the entire time of Islamic rule (Khan p 205).

Slavery: Initially ‘India’ included part of today’s Pakistan (Sindh), Bangladesh/Bengal and Kashmir. Hinduism and Buddhism flourished in Afghanistan pre the Islamic takeover (7th century). In the 16th century Afghanistan was divided between the Muslim Mogul (Mughal) Empire of India and the Safavids of Persia.

Initially the godless Umayyads, allowed Hindus dhimmi status – possibly because of their large numbers, resistance to Islam and their value as a source of tax income. This violates Islamic text and law which demands death or conversion for idolaters and polytheists. When Sultan Iltutmish (d 1236) was asked why Hindus weren’t given the choice between death and Islam, he replied:

“but at the moment in India…the Muslims are so few that they are like salt (in a large dish) …however after a few years when in the capital and the regions and all the small towns, when the Muslims are well established and the troops are larger….it would be possible to give Hindus the choice of death or Islam” (cited in Lal [c] p 538) (Can we learn anything from this)

Despite their supposed ‘dhimmi’ status, mass slaughter, mass forced conversion and mass enslavement with the resulting forced conversion to Islam were practised throughout Islamic rule and into the 20th century as many demanded the idolaters/polytheists convert or die. Hindu fighters and males were slaughtered with women and children enslaved. Eunuch slavery was practised on young boys.

Often actual numbers aren’t given, just comments like ‘countless captives/slaves,’ or ‘all the women and children were taken.’ Where numbers are recorded, they are terrifying. Along with people, the Muslims took everything they could—coins, jewels, cloths, clothes, furniture, idols, animals, grain etc or destroyed it.

Muslim rulers were foreigners. Until the 13th century, most slaves were sent out of India but following the Sultanate of Delhi (1206) they were retained to work for the sultanate, sold in India or sent elsewhere. Slaves from elsewhere were imported and Muslim armies were composed of a wide array of foreign slave groups ‘converted’ to Islam and ‘Hindus’ and Indian ‘converts.’

Slaves were the promised booty from Allah and obtaining them was a strong motivation for jihad.

“slaves were so plentiful that they became very cheap men…were degraded….but this is the goodness of Allah, who bestows honours on his own religion and degrades infidelity”. (Muslim chronicler Utbi on Sultan Subuktigin of Ghazni’s slave raid [942-997] in Sookdheo p166)

In Sindh (first area attacked successfully) the early ‘Muslim’ community was composed mainly of slaves forced into Islam and a small number of Arab masters (Khan p 299). Initially slaves were forced out of India eg Qasim (Arab), the conquerer of Sindh sent by Hajjaj bin Yusuf Sakifi in the caliphate of Walid I, took 300,000 from a 3 year campaign in 712-715 (Khan p 299, Trifkovic p 109). Muslim fighters came from everywhere to partake in this ‘jihad.’ Qasim was suddenly recalled and executed (possibly by being sown in an animal’s hide) for supposedly violating 2 Sindhi princesses destined for the caliph’s harem!! (Lal [c] p 439)

The Ghaznivids-Turks from Ghazni, Afghanistan (997-1206) who subdued the Punjab.

From 17 raids (997-1030) Sultan Muhmud Ghazni (Turk from Afghanistan, 997-1030) sent hundreds of thousands of slaves to Ghanzi (Afghanistan) resulting in a loss of about 2 million people via slaughter or enslavement and sale outside India (Khan p 315). Chroniclers (eg Utbi, the sultan’s secretary) provide some numbers eg -from Thanesar, the Muslim army brought 200,000 captives back to Ghazni (Afghanistan). In 1019, 53,000 were taken. At one time the caliph’s 1/5th share was 150,000 suggesting 750,000 captives. 500,000 were taken in one campaign (at Waihind)(Lal [c] p 551) Mahmud’s secretary al-Utbi records:

“Swords flashed like lightening amid the blackness of clouds, and fountains of blood flowed like the fall of setting star. The friends of god defeated their opponents….the Musalmans wreaked their vengeance on the infidel enemies of god killing 15,000 of them…making them food of the beasts and birds of prey….god also bestowed on his friends such an amount of booty as was beyond all bounds and calculations, including 500,000 slaves beautiful men and women” (Khan p 191)

The Ghaznivid’s ruled in the ‘Islamic sultanate of the Punjab’ till 1186. Attacks in Kashmir, Hansi, and districts of the Punjab resulted in mass slaughter and enslavement eg 100,000 in a 1079 attack in the Punjab (Tarik –i-Alfi in Khan p 276-7, Lal [d] p 553


Under the Ghaurivid rulers (Turks) eg Muhammad Ghauri (Afghani) and his military commander then ruler, Qutbuddin Aibak (r1206-1210), the Delhi sultanate was set up. Mass beheadings, enslavements, forced conversions, plunder and the destruction of temples continued. Slaves were incredibly plentiful. In 1195, Aibak took 20,000 slaves from Raja Bhim and 50,000 at Kalinjar (1202) (Lal [c] p 536).

“even the poor (Muslim) householder became owner of numerous slaves.’ (Khan 103, Lal [c] p 537).

Through the 13/14th century ruled by the Khilji (Khaljis) and Tughlaq’s, slavery grew as Islam spread. Thousands of slaves were sold at a low price everyday (Khan p 280). Alauddin Khilji’s (r 1296-1316) capture of slaves was stupendous and he shackled, chained and humiliated slaves (Lal [c] p 540). In the sack of Somnath alone he:

“took captive a great number of handsome and elegant maidens, amounting to 20,000 and children of both sexes ..more than the pen can enumerate. The Mohammadan army brought the country to utter ruin, destroyed the lives of inhabitants, and plundered the cities and captured their offspring.” (historian cited in Bostom p 641, Lal [c] p 540)

Many thousands were massacred. Alauddin Khilji (r 1296-1316) had 50,000 slave BOYS in his personal service and 70,000 slaves worked continuously on his buildings.(Lal [c] p 541)

Women practised Jauhar (burning or killing oneself to avoid enslavement and rape) and sati.

The Sufi Amir Khusrau notes “the Turks, whenever they please, can seize, buy or sell any Hindu” (Lal [c] p 541)


Enslaved and Castrated

Eunuchs: All over the Islamic world, the conquered were castrated, including in India. This was done so men could guard harems, provide carnal indulgence for rulers, give devotion to the ruler as they had no hope of a family of their own and of course, this quickly reduced the breeding stock of the conquered. Castration was a common practice throughout Muslim rule possibly contributing to the DECLINE in India’s population from 200 million in 1000 CE to 170 million in 1500 CE (Khan p 314)

Once Sultan Bakhtiyar Khilji conquered Bengal in 1205, it became a leading supplier of castrated slaves. This remained the case into the Mogul period (1526-1857).

Akbar the Great (1556-1605) owned eunuchs. Said Khan Chaghtai owned 1,200 eunuchs (an official of Akbar’s son Jahangir)! In Aurangzeb’s reign, in 1659 at Golkunda (Hyderabad), 22,000 boys were emasculated and given to Muslim rulers and governors or sold. (Khan 313).

Sultan Alauddin Khilji (r 1296-1316) had 50,000 boys in his personal service Sultan Muhammad Tughlaq (r 1325-51) had 20,000 and Sultan Firoz Tughlaq (r 1351-1388) had 40,000 (Firoz Tulghlaq liked to collect boys in any way and had 180,000 slaves in total (Lal [c] p 542). Several commanders under various sultans were eunuchs. Muslim historians record the ‘infatuation’ of sultans Mahmud Ghazni, Qutbuddin Aibak, and Sikandar Lodi –for handsome young boys! Sultan Mahmud was infatuated by his Hindu commander Tilak (Khan p 314)

Conclusion: The inhuman behaviour applied to the whole Indian population by Muslims was the same whether the Muslims were Sufis, Arabs, Afghanis, Turks, or Mogul as all followed Islam’s laws, text and the fine example of Mohammad. It should also be noted that the violence and enslavement continued even after they had virtual control over India because the aim was not merely to conquer but to force all into Islam. Muslims did not come to join Indian society, they came to wipe it out and replace it with Islam—which tells them that they own everything because it’s the booty promised by allah. The pagans/idolaters, polytheists had to convert or die and only then could there be (Islamic) peace! Slaves were the just reward for Islam’s fighters–part of the booty promised by allah.
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