A Brief Introduction to Muhammad and Islam
Around the time of 600 A.D. a religion borne of barbarians burst forth from the middle east; devouring empires and peoples, converting or destroying all:
'Umar sent the Muslims to the great countries to fight the pagans. When Al-Hurmuzan embraced Islam, 'Umar said to him. "I would like to consult you regarding these countries which I intend to invade." Al-Hurmuzan said, "Yes, the example of these countries and their inhabitants who are the enemies of the Muslims, is like a bird with a head, two wings and two legs; If one of its wings got broken, it would get up over its two legs, with one wing and the head; and if the other wing got broken, it would get up with two legs and a head, but if its head got destroyed, then the two legs, two wings and the head would become useless. The head stands for Khosrau, and one wing stands for Caesar and the other wing stands for Faris. So, order the Muslims to go towards Khosrau." So, 'Umar sent us (to Khosrau) appointing An-Numan bin Muqrin as our commander. When we reached the land of the enemy, the representative of Khosrau came out with forty-thousand warriors, and an interpreter got up saying, "Let one of you talk to me!" Al-Mughira replied, "Ask whatever you wish." The other asked, "Who are you?" Al-Mughira replied, "We are some people from the Arabs; we led a hard, miserable, disastrous life: we used to suck the hides and the date stones from hunger; we used to wear clothes made up of fur of camels and hair of goats, and to worship trees and stones. While we were in this state, the Lord of the Heavens and the Earths, Elevated is His Remembrance and Majestic is His Highness, sent to us from among ourselves a Prophet whose father and mother are known to us. Our Prophet, the Messenger of our Lord, has ordered us to fight you till you worship Allah Alone or give Jizya (i.e. tribute); and our Prophet has informed us that our Lord says:-- "Whoever amongst us is killed (i.e. martyred), shall go to Paradise to lead such a luxurious life as he has never seen, and whoever amongst us remain alive, shall become your master." (Al-Mughira, then blamed An-Numan for delaying the attack and) An-Nu' man said to Al-Mughira, "If you had participated in a similar battle, in the company of Allah's Apostle he would not have blamed you for waiting, nor would he have disgraced you. But I accompanied Allah's Apostle in many battles and it was his custom that if he did not fight early by daytime, he would wait till the wind had started blowing and the time for the prayer was due (i.e. after midday)."
The central question is: Was this Muhammad just another prophet, an Arab Jesus come to speak of his kingdom to come? Was he a Bedouin Buddah seeking enlightenment and preaching peace? Perhaps he was a new Moses, leading his Arabs to their promised land?
From the Koran, the Hadith, the Sunnah and the Sirat Rasoul Allah we know his life, his deeds, and his word. We also know of the death he caused. He comes forth from the desert and galvanises the tribes against the urban centers. He storms Mecca and Medina.
But Medina was not yet Medina.
It was known as Yathrib.
It was a Jewish city, a product of Jews cast out of their lands. Did Muhammad join arms with his fellow People of the Book? After all, your textbooks are quick to point out that Christians and Jews are such.
Muhammad was a killer, a warrior; a force of death and falsely-claimant prophet. He burns caravan, commits atrocities; starves, burns and enslaves entire cities1.
He casts the first stone against an adultress, saying with word and deed "It is I alone who carries the will of God". Muhammad took a bride, Aisha, one of many. What is different here, worth noting above all others, is her age. She was only nine years old at the time. Worse than marriage, he consumates this marriage; this union of old man and frightened child. Muhammad is thus the only religous founder to also be a molestor. According to the Islamic scholars, the girl is so small she takes along her toys to his bedchambers.
Not only did Muhammad destroy Jews, Arabs, order assassinations, but he also had sex with a little girl.
Child marriage was therefore deemed lawful in Islam. It had found its way into sunna and sharia. Marriage is considered nothing more than a sale of the minor girl. The contract can and is drawn up between the guardian and would be husband. Her consent matters not. Muhammad did worse in this arena, marrying Zaynab bint Jahsh, his adopted sons ex-wife. He also went against his own teachings, his own uttered "sacred words", perhaps following that which was un-uttered, by marrying more than four women.
Add incest to the rap sheet.
After Muhammad's death, Islamic armies explode into Judeah, Egypt and Syria; extinguishing these provinces of Byzantium, in effect putting half of their empire to the sword. The Christian met the Moslem at the Battle of Yarmuk bridge. Here the Byzantines were defeated and the population converted to Islam en masse.2 Damascus became the capital of the Umayyads, who went on the wrest control of the Mediterrainean from the Romans. They continued attacking, imbued with doctrines of Jihad. they went on to besiege the great city of Byzantium,but it held them off for the meantime.
Seven centuries late the Turks would finish the job; the "Uthuman" or Ottomans would establish domain there. In Judeah the Islamic warriors commit the greatest affront to Jews since the diaspora; they build the Al-Aqsa Mosque upon the Temple Mount. It is later claimed the Muhammad ascends to heaven from the Holy City.
Jerusalem is claimed as Holy. Convert or die becomes the practice; the de facto rules of engagement, their law of peace and war. Persia, one of the longest lasting civilizations, is subdued almost without battle. Byzantine Africa is overrun. The Byzantines melt across the Mediterrainean and have lost nearly all of their landmass save southern Italy. The butchery of Byzantine territory provided Muslim scholars with a wealth of medical and mathematical knowledge as well as architechture which they would later impress upon groups of invading crusaders. Dar-al-Islam was spreading.3
Thus darkness came to descend.
In the West the forces of Islam crossed into the Visigothic kingdom of Spain. There, a fragmented Kingdom was preoccupied with battling the Basques in the North. But when word of a landing of 700 Raiders reached the young Visigoth King, he charged south with a small force and brimmed with confidence. There, upon the straits of Gibraltar (jib-al-Tariq, or rock of Tariq), the King was killed. The Arabs, with Tariq at thier head, ran circles around the force and targeted the king with brutal singlemindedness. He was killed swiftly.
It was not long after that columns of Moslems descended upon cities and butchered man, woman and child if they were resisted. Occupation was rather light, with Muslims tolerating the other major religions. The Moors, as brutal as they were, were among the most tolerant. But they did not stop with Spain. They wished to follow the concepts laid out by their theologians; there is the House of Islam and the House of War. House of Islam, it must be noted, does not mean the house of peace. Islam does not come from the Hebrew shalom as widely believed. This is an error or a lie. Islam means submission; the House of Submission is the lands under Islam. All other lands are known as the House of War; thus the warlord can justify death and destruction against enemy lands by simply envoking a divine authority. In a short time the Moors amass an army of hundreds of thousands, from many nations(like the Crusade which are much maligned) and pour into France with a great head of cavalry and infantry, crushing small disunited tribes as they advanced.
The Franks came to meet them at the Battle of Tours. They fought under Charles Martel, a man known as "the hammer" presumably because of his tactics in routing the Moslem foe. We know little of the actual battle. The clearest account possible is that the Arab's camp was laden with booty. The Franks charged this camp in a desperate bid to combat the superior numbers of the enemy. Perhaps Martel knew Islam better than we do, because the Arab army rushed to save its booty, and finding treasure much better than that pesky sixth-pillar, fled. After his resounding victory with very little loss on his side, the Frankish forces ethnically cleanse southern France. The Moors had brought a baggage train of women and children as if they intended to make their homes here; they to are put down. They are scattered into desperate bands, seeking escape from the implacable enemy to their Moorish domain. It amounts to a great slaughter, figures on the size of the army vary, as do its losses. But one fact is clear: of the large force that foolishly crossed the Pyreenes, almost none returned, including the Moorish Governor-General.
They were killed to a man.
Half-way round the world in this time, at a river in Central Asia, the Arabs met the Chinese. Unlike the Romans, who had previously traded and interchanged with China, they did not try to convert them with missionaries. Instead, at the Battle of Talas River, in 751, the Chinese were shoved out of their territory by the sword4.
In India forces under Muhmmad Qasim follow the model of Tariq, beginning a series of raids into India. Much like the historically maligned Mongols or their cousins the Huns, they began as small affairs and shape-shifted into massive invasions. Temples are burned, thousands and thousands are massacred, dozens of cities are burnt to ashes, their inhabitants forced into slavery and their females forced into sexual servitude. Qasim commands seventeen such brutal raids and ravages all before him. India is throughly violated by the barbaric forces. When Qasim begins to rule with a benevolent hand, allowing worship of Hindus; leaving the locals to themselves, he is chastised by his Sultan; Hajjaj. He is told "the great God says in the Koran [47.4]: True believers, when you encounter the unbelievers, strike off their heads. The above command of the Great God is a great command and must be respected and followed. You should not be so fond of showing mercy, as to nullify the virtue of the act. Henceforth grant pardon to no one of the enemy and spare none of them, or else all will consider you a weak-minded man." This becomes his standing order as the area known as the Sindh is taken.
Mahmud of Ghazni followed up with a full conquest, brutal in its own right. He commanded raid after raid, until all was subdued. Great Hindu kinds were beheaded, armies laid to ashes. India, with its many kings, failed to unite and was smashed, leading to the creation of the Dehli Sultanate.
Medieval Hindustan was a flower of civilization before the attacks and the beginning of the butchery. The Moslems could not create; no they found it far easier to destroy and absorb what was left. The Indian mathematicians were comparable to the Mayans, their sculpture and architechture was comparable to that of Rome. One of the longest lasting civilizations in the history of the world, heralded in the Vedas and Bhagavad-Gita, was met with a barabarous horde of man-locusts.Hindus are the true creators of Algebra, later learned by the invaders and called Al-Jabr. The Muslim forces followed their prophets commands, killing all the "pagans" without mercy. Buddhists and Hindus were thrown to the winds. the Hindu king of Kabul was enslaved, thus wiping out the last non-muslim religion to come to Afghanistan. The reign of the Moghuls in India began upon rivers of "kafir" blood. Slaves, mostly Hindu, were marched toward the Sultan in Baghdad. Along the way they pass through a series of treacherous paths; now know as the Hindu Kush, meaning slaughter of the Hindu. Like a parasite, Islam had latched itself onto the former lands of Persia, Byzantium, the Visigoths and the Guptas. By the sword Islam had come to reign. It would presage more horrible things to come.
1One can point to such stories in the Holy Bible but the act is not conceived as generally as it would be considered in the Recitation.
2This act had little to do with Islam in as a religion and more to do with Byzantine oppression of religious minorites. For the scope and nature of such oppresions, see Gibbon's Decline and Fall where it is detailed in full. But one must also remember the jizya was heavy Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (p. 47-56).
3The Islamic scholars could take some knowlegde and discard the rest. The must be credtied for brining together ecclectic knowldge gleamed one must not forget, as fruits of conquest. Accounts of such discovery can be found in nearly all world history textbooks.
4This was not "Sinofied" territory, but a recent aquistion.