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Thank you to Haaretz’s David B. Green for forcing me to research the Arabs in Andalusia

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I owe the veteran Haaretz journalist, David B. Green, thanks for forcing me to search the internet for some quick and simple information about the Arabs in Andalusia.

I am not a historian and, for decades, my medical and public health education and practice had limited my intellectual forays to related scientific fields. With that narrowed vision, I had forgotten what little relevant historical information I had learned in elementary school under the British Mandate. And anything I learned after that was filtered clean either through the Zionist sieve or through my professional focus. I now recall reading some of Maimonides’s original writings in the Arabic Language at the Harvard Medical School Countway Library. I recall reading about the First Aid approach to cases of snakebite and being amazed how, in fact, such approach hadn’t changed in near a millennium. Or was it Avicenna’s treatise that I read on the subject of snake bite? At least to me, the two are equidistant culturally, emotionally and as sources of pride. Wouldn’t you know it, some uppity modern-day Emergency Medicine physician had gone and changed that. You no longer put a tourniquet proximal to the bite.

But I digress. Not only that there was little in our school curriculum after the Nakba about Arabs as a whole, what with our Old Testament and Jewish History studies and needing to convert all relevant dates to different eras of the first or second temple, but also that there was an undeclared ban on applause when teachers spoke of Arab history. I know of at least one teacher in my village in Galilee, who was fired for singing the praises of the Arabs in Andalusia to his students. A student ratted on him. He had such a difficult time finding another job that he up and left to Norway where he got a PhD in anthropology and commenced, among other things, to document life in erased Palestinian villages in Israel on the eve of their destruction. Go figure! What can you do to stop those Palestinians from muddying your pure springs of knowledge?!

David B. Green (Photo: Twitter/@davidbeegreen)

But I digress again. Nearly ten years ago, I corresponded with Mr. David B. Green who, at the time, was in charge of the English-language editorial page in Haaretz. He assured me then that he intended to give my voice the chance to be heard. After I had submitted one article about the ongoing Israeli war on Gaza and exchanged a few emails with him, I realized that he wanted my voice to be heard saying what he thought. Our correspondence ended.

Today I read his article about congresswoman elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez discovering her Jewish roots. When I saw the heading I thought to myself: What a great opportunity for my wise friend of old to butter me up by mentioning the congenial relations between Muslims and Jews that prevailed in Andalusia and the great strides in science and philosophy that their combined peaceful efforts had achieved.

“Please, Mr. Green,” I reflected, “just try and milk this one a little for a positive gesture toward the twenty percent of your co-citizens and potential readership. After all, Muslims and Jews coexisted with a modicum of harmony for near eight centuries. And when it all ended, both Muslims and Jews were driven out together. In fact, many more Muslims than Jews were expelled or forced to convert to Christianity.”

Not a chance! I read the article again and repeated my mental appeal to Mr. Green: “Since you allude to genetics and family trees in your article, let me challenge you to a wager: I bet you my last keffiyeh that Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and I have more genes in common than she does with your prime minister. Please, if not for me, then just for the context, please, in the future, do mention those darn Muslims. Just for the record!”

Not once this time around! The whole issue was the sole concern of Jews and Christians. And would you believe it, when I googled it in various forms, the scores of different references I found give the same general impression: The history of Andalusia seems to revolve around its Jews versus its Christians. I wonder if the Department of Arab Education in Israel is in contract with Google?

Hatim Kanaaneh

Dr. Hatim Kanaaneh is a Palestinian doctor who has worked for over 35 years to bring medical care to Palestinians in Galilee, against a culture of anti-Arab discrimination. He is the author of the book A Doctor in Galilee: The Life and Struggle of a Palestinian in Israel. His collection of short stories entitled Chief Complaint was released by Just World Books in the spring of 2015.

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71 Responses

  1. gamal on December 13, 2018, 11:12 am

    “Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and I have more genes in common than she does with your prime minister.”

    and of course not forgetting the Berbers, the Almoravid, Almohad and personal favorite dynasty the Awlad Ziri, Zirids of Grenada, and the Zayyanid, Hafsid, Marinid, Wattasid etc berber dynasties that ruled in the Maghreb and sometimes Spanish kingdoms, often allying with both Grenada and the Iberian, Kings of Castille, kind of like America pre 1861, when it all went to the hell from which we are yet to be delivered. Mostly Sanhaja and Zennata Berbers, other than when they are neither,

    have you seen the Arabic and neo-Aramaic speaker comparing notes

    a Christian scholar once told his class, I was sitting in, “while one can not state that Jesus spoke Arabic he certainly did if he ever bought anything in a Palestinian market.”

    anyway just made me recall.

    • gamal on December 13, 2018, 10:31 pm

      “pre 1861” pre 1681 obviously, it’s been a long long nightmare

    • Boris on December 14, 2018, 9:44 am

      “… if he ever bought anything in a Palestinian market.”

      There was no Palestine at the time of Jesus. Thus, no Palestinian markets…

      • John O on December 14, 2018, 12:12 pm


        So what? There was no United Kingdom, United States, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Canada or Israel either. There were some folks called Philistines, though.

      • johneill on December 14, 2018, 12:16 pm

        and israelites, johno

      • MHughes976 on December 14, 2018, 2:57 pm

        Well, both Josephus and Philo, the leading members of the first century Jewish intellectual class whose works survive, refer to Palestine as ‘Palestine’. It wasn’t an obsolete term in those days, so modern use of it with reference to those times is legitimate. The majority opinion, I think, is that the mass of people in Jesus’ time in Palestine spoke Aramaic, though I think that a lot of Greek was spoken too.

      • Misterioso on December 14, 2018, 4:17 pm


        “There was no Palestine at the time of Jesus….”

        It seems your ignorance knows no bounds.

        To wit:
        The region between the Jordan River and the Med. Sea was referred to as “Palestine” by the Greek historian Herodotus (“the father of history”) during the 5th century BCE.

        100 years later, in the mid-4th Century BCE, Aristotle referred to Palestine while discussing the Dead Sea in his Meteorology. “Again if, as is fabled, there is a lake in Palestine….”

        Jewish historian Josephus’s (c.37-100 CE) The Jewish War, Antiquities of the Jews contains many references to both “Palestine” and “Palestinians.”

        Contemporaries of Jesus also routinely referred to Palestine as “Palestine.” In the first decade of the 1st Century, the Roman poet Ovid mentioned Palestine in both his famed mythological poem Metamorphoses and his erotic elegy The Art of Love. He also wrote of “the waters of Palestine” in his calendrical poem Fasti. Around the same time, another Latin poet, Tibullus wrote of “the crowded cities of Palestine” in the section “Messalla’s Triumph” in his poem Delia.

        The Zionist claim that the Roman emperor Hadrian officially changed the name of the region to “Syria Palaestina” or simply “Palestine,” in 135 CE is contradicted by the fact that by then, the term “Palestine” had already been in use for over 600 years.

        GET EDUCATED!!

      • Boris on December 14, 2018, 5:03 pm

        Get educated? Get real.

        Herodotus was referring to Philistines – a Greek, sea faring people – yes, there was Philistine where Gaza is now.

        From wikipedia ( – “It has been contended that in the first century authors still associated the term with the southern coastal region.”.

        Joseph Flavius works were re-written later by Latin speaking scribes. They had put the word “Palestine” in them.

        My point – Bible does not mention the term “Palestine” even once and Jesus could not go to a Palestinian market because none existed.

        He was clearly a Jewish rebel and Romans made fun of him calling him the King of the Jews, not Arabs, not Palestinians, Irish, Americans or anyone else.

      • Rob Brady on December 14, 2018, 5:36 pm

        Misterioso is correct Im afraid and it doesn’t take a lot of research to to find Greek references to Palestine. Strangely however, there are no references to Israel.

      • MHughes976 on December 14, 2018, 6:22 pm

        I don’t know if you have read the Herodotus and Josephus passages in full and in context, Boris, which I have tried to do with as much honesty as I can manage and I don’t think that it’s plausible to treat H’s reference to ‘the peninsula’ as ‘the Gaza strip’ rather ‘river to sea’ as we would say. I am sure Josephus was not mainly copied by Latin rather than Greek speakers and the I think it hard to see special reason for falsification of the text by them at that point. I accept that Josephus has been falsified substantially by Christian scribes for Christian reasons, though it was not their way to conceal his highly Jewish point of view.
        What do you make of Isaiah’s ‘whole Palestina’ KJV? It’s late at night and I haven’t got my Bible books to hand.
        In any event a statement like ‘Jesus went to a market in Palestine and talked with Arabs’ makes complete sense even if Jesus didn’t use the word at all and we are relying on the modern reference of the word.
        And I’m sure that there were indeed quite a few traders from Arsbia
        In any event there are people called Palestinians now and they should now have their long denied rights, never mind ancient history.

      • Misterioso on December 14, 2018, 6:26 pm


        “Get educated? Get real,” etc.

        Boris, my boy, once again, you provide proof you’re an utter fraud, way out of your depth.
        Your ignorance is beyond words. However, what is most alarming is that despite being repeatedly caught out by myself and others, you continue to spew it forth. Truly pathetic.

        Enough said!!

      • eljay on December 14, 2018, 6:34 pm

        || Boris: … My point – Bible does not mention the term “Palestine” even once … ||

        AFAIK it also does not mention “State of Israel”, “Jewish State”, “San Remo” or “anti-Semitism / -Semitic”.

      • Boris on December 14, 2018, 8:29 pm

        KJV ? Bullshit!

        When was it written?

        There are plenty of comparisons of the original Hebrew text, for example, and its English translations.

        “Palestine” was the later inclusion.

      • MHughes976 on December 17, 2018, 5:53 am

        There are 8 verses in the Bible which mention a territory called Palestine or Philistia, these being two vocalisations and transliterations of the same Hebrew word. In English these have come to refer to ‘river to sea’ and ‘Gaza strip’.
        Isaiah 14: 29 uses the phrase ‘whole’ or ‘all’ which suggests somewhere quite big and that may be why the KJV translators chose to translate ‘Palestina’ though they use ‘Philistia’ elsewhere. They used ‘Palestine’ in the Exodus 15 Song of Miriam too, perhaps correctly observing that it is quite close in style and theology to the Isaiah passage. They use it fir Joel 3:2 which seems to refer to the whole coastal strip south from Lebanon.
        So one can’t say that the Bible makes no reference to a place called by the name which became ‘Palaestina’ in Greek (though the Septuagint people disliked and in their Isaiah 14 avoided it) and Latin. It is so far possible so far that only the Gaza Strip was ever meant – and that this was strictly understood – but in that case it is surprising that it was this name that spread into Greek for the whole ‘peninsula’. Aristotle refers to the Dead Sea as in ‘Palestine’ and that certainly takes you some way east from Gaza.
        I still don’t see the point of emending Josephus – perhaps some editor who knows more than I do has suggested it? But would we then have to amend the Philo passage as well?
        I know that all this doesn’t really matter but the destruction of the ancient and beautiful name ‘Palestine’ is part of the whole wretched story of ‘they don’t exist’ which has had such baleful effect these days.

      • Hatim Kanaaneh on December 17, 2018, 12:13 pm

        “There was no Palestine at the time of Jesus….”

        Boris: I suggest a more reliable source of information than Wikipedia. The historian Nur Masalha recently published a thoroughly researched and fully referenced book with the title “Palestine: a 4000 year history.” I recommend it to anyone seriously interested in the rumor you are spreading.

      • MHughes976 on December 17, 2018, 3:18 pm

        Mind you that Wikipedia timeline for the name ‘Palestine’ is quite good and worth a look.

      • Boris on December 17, 2018, 3:43 pm

        It was “peleset” or something like that.

        The reference was to Philistines – seafarers who occupied the coastal cities.


        By the first century this nation was no more, disappeared, ceased to be, expired and gone to meet its maker, kicked the bucket, etc.

        The contemporary Palestinians are in no way related to Philistines.

      • RoHa on December 17, 2018, 9:36 pm

        “The contemporary Palestinians are in no way related to Philistines.”

        This is highly unlikely. The idea that all the Philistines kept it in their loincloths and never got friendly with any of the other people in the area is difficult to believe.

        But even if it is true, so what? The place was called Palestine, and so the markets were Palestinian.

      • MHughes976 on December 18, 2018, 5:53 am

        So far we have been discussing the name – and I think that the case for ‘Palestine’ as a long-standing name, still in use in the first century, is pretty strong, as stated. So there is valid objection to the Zionist ‘nominicide’. If we are moving to the demographics, it’s clear enough that there was no separate Philistine entity in the first century. However there is no record of the destruction or ‘transfer’ of any population at the relevant time, so the non-Jewish population of say 500 BCE must have left a major genetic inheritance.

      • oldgeezer on December 18, 2018, 10:04 am

        The suggestion that modern day Palestinians bear no relationship to ancient Philistines is highly unlikely. I’ve yet to see much published about Palestinian dna at this point in time but I’m sure it’s been researched. Why would it not when dna of surrounding countries has been. More likely the results aren’t liked by researchers or other powers.

        Lebanese dna is closely tied to Canaanites, Phoenicians, middle eastern Jews, etc. I think the Jewish dna component is around 14% but my memory isn’t what it used to be. I haven’t bothered to look but it would be interesting to see what percent of middle eastern Jews is shared by european Jews.

        Given the Lebanese breakdown I don’t see why Palestinian dna would vary in any great significant way.

        The dna theory of Ashkenazi Jews does not work in their favour. They have about as much of a tie to the middle east as the Irish.

  2. Danaa on December 14, 2018, 6:26 am

    AOC is a fast learner. Those Sephardic/Jewish roots she has suddenly uncovered should come in handy.

    I just hope she won’t make the mistake Elizabeth warren did and try for that little DNA test. I fear that if she did, those “Sephardic” roots will turn out to be Berber in origin. May be we should buy her Shlomo Sand’s book? (the first one)?

    Also, this article reminded me – unfortunately – the utter boredom I had to suffer through my entire schooling, having to go through that old testament scrolls. In detail. Every day. By the time i was in high school I discovered the trick of reading more interesting manuscripts under the table. I recall being quite partial to the history of the English, the Vikings and the Russ. Fascinating stuff as compared to the duldrums and the endless droning of my bible teachers, who could not breath life into a page if their lives depended on it. mercifully, I forgot them all.

    Oh and that jewish history stuff (another mandatory daily class)? Oh my, the less is said the better – what without queens and mistresses and heroic tales of exploits, it could all be fitted in a couple of years, or so I thought (as I read my own self-selected infinitely more exciting and thought-provoking histories under the table).

    Luckily, having been blessed (cursed) with uncanny memory I always managed to study just enough the night before the tests. Mercifully, this style of learning also begets much forgetfulness, which came soon and lasts to this day.

    But yes, I might as well confess – I just hated school in Israel. With the same passion I loved sports, and sometimes science (our literature courses were also singularly unmemorable. Can’t recall a single teacher who was worth listening to, except for the young substitute who once showed up only to be shown the door in record time. Too entertaining probably). Not that I minded going to school per se, as a place to socialize, but its the content I had serious issues with, which left a lot to be desired. Sometimes I think I should sue the israel Education department for criminally wasting my time, when time was the single most precious gift a young person can have.

    OTOH I did learn a valuable skill – I could fall asleep at a drop of a hat. In fact, even to this day I keep a Tenach book on the night stand in case of sleeplessness. merely opening it seems to cure the problem. No sleeping pills needed.

    • catalan on December 14, 2018, 8:39 am

      “the utter boredom I had to suffer through my entire schooling, having to go through that old testament scrolls”. DanaA
      You should have seen what I read as a kid. Your stuff was riveting compared to the youth communist party manuals I had to go through. And imagine on TV always some old guy talking about the final victory of communism Lenin was our god complete with the miracles. Basically a 24 hour regimen of Bernie Sanders.
      As to the dna, I am Sephardic Jewish and the 42 percent that was Jewish is exactly the same as that of my wife who is Ashkenazi. No difference. The rest though is Italian and Arabic with some Turkish and Iberian mixed in. I think that shows that it is a myth that the Sephardi, at least those of Greece and the Balkans are different from Ashkenazi. You should be happy though- the Sephardi Jewish community of South east Europe is gone. They kind of got gassed. So no boring Old Testament scrolls, just exciting Christian orthodox things for the kids there.

      • Danaa on December 14, 2018, 4:45 pm

        Lenin was our god complete with the miracles. Basically a 24 hour regimen of Bernie Sanders.

        Ah, this one. I was with you until you brought in Lenin cum sanders. Interesting juxtaposition there.

        Now I am beginning to wonder whether you ever got much Lenin in the first place. Perhaps, your inattention in class was in a class by itself?

        Also, did you catch my little comment about the popular DNA kits going a little political? it is, if you look into it, extremely easy to introduce bias into DNA studies. It’s all about what they choose to leave out. Also what they choose to define as “Jewish”. I would probably estimate the amount of your specific descendency fro the once Jews in Judea (wasn’t called israel then) by comparing with certain Palestinian gene pools, the only ones known for certain to have descended from the ancient population that lived there.. Can’t help but wonder about the commonality percentage. My guess is about 10%. AOC probably stands at 1% or less.

        And that swipe at south east european Jewish remnants must have been in really good faith. You are a true champ!

      • catalan on December 14, 2018, 7:03 pm

        “Perhaps, your inattention in class was in a class by itself? “ DanaA
        Come to think of it Sanders, Lenin and all the BDS types are kind of similar: always “winning”, arrogant, overconfident, incredibly verbose, and insecure. And just like communism, bds victory is just around the corner! Through the boycott of Pepsi no less.

  3. Boris on December 14, 2018, 9:51 am

    It is a myth that Muslims, Jews and Christians lived a peaceful life in Andalusia. There were constant conflict and war even among Muslims themselves.

    The fact is that Christians won – and the same queen who sent Columbus to discover new routes to India also sent first Jews, then Muslims packing.

    The fact is also that Spain now is trying to milk its former Jewish presence to the fullest. In every city now there are signs for “Jewish quarter” with obligatory Jewish museum. I think it has something to do with Spanish ingrained antisemitism – they believe that Jews control money and they want the money.

    • John O on December 14, 2018, 12:21 pm


      So, for centuries Jews have been victimised by Christians. But as soon as people start saying that was wrong, it’s just another manifestation of antisemitism. And it’s all about money. Shallow or what?

      • MHughes976 on December 14, 2018, 1:40 pm

        I share Boris’s scepticism about the rosy portrait of medieval Spain drawn by the tourist authorities there. I think there was some multiculturalism of a kind, marked by King Alfonso’s translation works in the late 1200s and by the entry of Averroism, the first attempt to reconcile religion and science, into Europe, which I suppose must have come vis Spain. Boris is right to mention that the Muslim side was very divided, the Christians little better. The Jews were sometimes caught in the middle of Christian conflicts. The transition between the Ivrea and Trastamara dynasties, from Pedro the Cruel to Henry the Brother-killer in 1369, was marked by anti-Semitic propaganda, Pedro being derisively called ‘King of the Jews’, though he had cruelly murdered his principal Jewish adviser, Samuel ha Levi,whose house is now the El Greco Museum and whose synagogue is still appropriated by the Church but with an air of embarrassment, it no longer being used for Christian worship. We were shown round it when we visited Toledo and told that everyone is Toledo is descended from Jews who converted but that there are not enough real Jews in the city to claim the synagogue back. Would they get it if they asked?

      • Danaa on December 14, 2018, 4:52 pm

        Good bits of historical balancing.

        The Spanish tourism authorities are not stupid, of course. There is a reason why “Jewish quarters’ and “Jewish Synagogs” suddenly pop up all over Spain. Took them a while to get the tourist racket right.

        Just about everyone I talked to who visited Spain in the past few years came back convinced they had “something jewish” in their ancestry. just as many who visited the Indian jewlery stands along the wild west have discovered their Indian lines. Gotta justify that Turqois jewlery that so rarely gets worn, somehow.

      • RoHa on December 14, 2018, 11:34 pm

        “the entry of Averroism, the first attempt to reconcile religion and science, into Europe, which I suppose must have come via Spain.”

        Ibn Rushd was based in (and not out of) Spain, so it would be surprising if Averroism did not enter Europe via Spain. His work was far more influential in Europe that it was in the Islamic countries.

        Maimonedes was a great admirer of Ibn Rushd, and he and many later Jewish philosophers were influenced by Ibn Rushd’s work.

      • Boris on December 15, 2018, 9:11 am

        @John O

        I had visited Spain a couple years ago. My observation is despite these efforts there are plenty of antisemitism ingrained into the Spanish psyche .

        I say it based on my limited engagement with Spaniards – primarily with official tour guides and their brief comments.

        For example, one guide was referring to a Jewish treasurer of a queen and commented – “you know how Jews and money”.

        Another guide was showing a Star of David in a Catholic Church and claimed that conversos convinced the church to put it in in order to secretly Judaize and spread out Jewish symbols.

        And these were official guides – I would imagine they had to have a certain level of education, pass some sort of an exam, etc.

      • Danaa on December 15, 2018, 5:08 pm

        Boris, a rule of thumb for you: if you look for so-called “anti-semitism” everywhere, you shall find it.

        I can say much the same about anti-Russian or just ant–slav sentiments in Europe. As in “you know those bumbling slavs’, or “you know Russians and bears”.

        The issue with Jewish people like you (which is decidedly not all Jewish people – boy, lets hope so!) is that they’ll thread a camel through a needle hole to find themselves an anti-semitism think to sprinkle on their daily bread. I notice that you are not discoursing on the philosophy of maimonides or the historical facts of what and how things transpired in the 12-14th centuries. No, you go right to the heart of the matter – why there must have been “anti-semitism” then just as there must be now.

        This tendency of finding an “eternal enemy” one so unplacatable, so interminable that one is justified in keeping oneself in their little confining cell, is unfortunately, akin to a psychosis. The more you keep at it, the more you’ll find reasons to stay within your own ideological cell, which is exactly what makes parts of the jewish “gestalt” (yours, to be specific) closer to a cult than a religion.

        You see signs of that collective psychosis most clearly in israel which has, for all intents and purposes, turned into a warrior cult culture animated by militarism. Check Ofir’s piece on that illustrious hannukah thing to get another take on that made-to-order “festival of lights”..

        In any case, just as you are intent to find “anti-semitism” in any and every quip by some non-Jewish person somewhere, so I find traces and evidence of psychosis in nearly every comment you make. Unfortunately I judge your condition to be incurable, so obviously there’s no point in resorting to reason to convince you of anything. But clearly, scattering droppings all over the comment pages on MW, where you are not exactly popular or even remotely respected (as I’m sure the voluminous collection of replies to your comments will attest) is not exactly a sign of good mental health.

        Still, should you ever seek some relief for your condition, I’ll have some suggestions.

      • RoHa on December 15, 2018, 8:19 pm

        “I notice that you are not discoursing on the philosophy of maimonides …”

        Perhaps because Maimonides had an anti-Semitic habit of writing in Arabic. A lot of it was Judeo-Arabic, though.

      • catalan on December 16, 2018, 10:45 am

        “closer to a cult than a religion. “ Danaa
        A person who follows a “movement” which preaches that abstaining from Nestle Crunch and Pepsi will liberate the Palestinians to the partition borders (and solve global warming in the process) talks about cults. The juicy irony…

      • Danaa on December 16, 2018, 3:15 pm

        @catalan. Who, me? you may be confusing me with someone else – when did I ever have anything to say about Nestle?

        Noe I did wonder about you, but that’s another thing altogether, isn’t it?

    • gamal on December 14, 2018, 2:26 pm

      ” Boris is right to mention that the Muslim side was very divided, the Christians little better. ”

      do you notice something, Mr. Philosopher?

      “Muslim side was very divided”, but still a “side” in what? or obviously not a side?

      “the Christians little better” but still a “side”, how does this notion of sides emerge from the actual data, or are you perhaps forcing it into a familiar non-challenging purely ideologically determined form,

      “I think there was some multiculturalism of a kind, “…? oh, your self awareness is a lesson to us all, not sure which “side” it benefits but I bet it’s the best self awareness that there has ever been seen.

      It’s important not to romanticize those we demonize, well done that’s you’re Philosophy is it, the structure of arguments and the nature of ‘truth’ and what we are justified in saying on our various “sides”,

      it’s ridiculous Hughes and deeply malicious of you in context, you “know” no such things.

    • John O on December 15, 2018, 2:27 pm


      I can only join you in hoping that that sort of attitude dies off soon.

  4. Misterioso on December 14, 2018, 9:59 am

    Thank you Dr. Hatim Kanaaneh and Mondowiess for this article on al-Andalus!! If they ever invent a time machine my first choice for a journey into the past would be Al-Andalus (Andalusia) during the 8th century.

    One of my pet peeves is that for whatever reason, its magnificent history and enormous contribution to civilization is virtually ignored in the western world’s high schools.

    From my notes:
    Perhaps the most outstanding example of the harmony that existed in the past between Muslims, Christians and Jews was the legendary kingdom known as al-Andalus (Andalusia) established in the southern two-thirds of the Iberian Peninsula (part of present day Spain) by Arab Muslims following their defeat of the Visigoths and conquest of the city of Cordova (which became their capital) in circa 711. They treated the defeated Christians with clemency and were welcomed as liberators by the Jews of Spain. Although the Muslims made no concerted effort to convert Christians and Jews, by the tenth century Islam had become the dominant faith.

    The Golden Age of this province of the Islamic Empire (established in 756 by the exiled Syrian Prince Abd al-Rahman) lasted for well over 400 years. During these centuries under Muslim rule the three Abrahamic faiths lived in friendship and developed the world’s most advanced centre of learning and the arts, challenged only by Baghdad.

    “In principle, all Islamic polities were (and are) required by Quaranic injunction not to harm the dhimmi [religious minorities in a Muslim state], to tolerate the Christians and Jews living in their midst. But beyond that fundamental prescribed posture, al-Andalus was, from these beginnings, the site of memorable and distinctive interfaith relations. Here the Jewish community rose from the ashes of an abysmal existence under the Visigoths to the point that the emir who proclaimed himself caliph in the tenth century had a Jew as his foreign minister. Fruitful intermarriage among the various cultures and the quality of cultural relations with the dhimmi were vital aspects of Andalusian identity as it was cultivated over these first centuries.” (Maria Rosa Menocal, Ornament of the World; Little, Brown and Company, 2002, pp. 11 and 30)

    “[By] laying the foundations of their power in a system of wise and equitable laws, diligently cultivating the arts and sciences, and promoting agriculture, manufactures and commerce, [the Muslim Arabs] gradually formed an empire unrivalled for its prosperity by any of the empires of Christendom…. The cities of Arabian Spain became the resort of Christian artisans, to instruct themselves in the useful art. The Universities of Toledo, Cordova, Seville, and Granada, were sought by the pale student from other lands to acquaint himself with the sciences of the Arabs and the treasure lore of antiquity.” (Washington Irving, Tales of the Alhambra, GREFOL,SA, La fuensanta, Mostoles, Madrid, 1990. pp. 52-53)

    Andalusia’s first caliph, Abd al-Rahman III, who ruled Andalusia from 912-961, appointed Hasdai ibn Shabrut, leader of the kingdom’s Jewish community and one of history’s most outstanding Jews as his foreign secretary, chief advisor, and closest confidant. In this tradition Samuel Hanagid, a Jew, who later commanded a great army in the mid-eleventh century, was made a prince under the Arab caliphate.

    Jewish business people, artists and intellectuals thrived in Andalusia. Among them were the poet Judah Halevi, the influential philosopher Moses Maimonides and writers Rebi Isaac Hacohen and Sayed Alfassi who was published under the nom de plume Harif.

    It was in Andalusia (known in Hebrew as Sefarad) “that the profoundly Arabized Jews rediscovered and reinvented Hebrew; there that Christians embraced nearly every aspect of Arabic style – from the intellectual of philosophy to the architectural styles of mosques….” (Maria Rosa Menocal, Ornament of the World)

    I urge those who are of the Jewish faith to watch this recent video:

    Young Jews visit Spain and connect with al-Andalus:

    • Boris on December 14, 2018, 10:57 am

      BirthWrong – the name says it all…

      “Although the Muslims made no concerted effort to convert Christians and Jews, by the tenth century Islam had become the dominant faith.”

      Why? ?How? Is it because Islam is a “true” religion?

      “… not to harm the dhimmi … ” — dhimmis were required to pay special tax, could not be in a position of power, could not testify in a court against a Muslim, etc.

      • oldgeezer on December 14, 2018, 11:17 am


        So…. The dhimmi experience was similar and arguably better than the both non Jewish Israelis and Palestinians.

      • Misterioso on December 14, 2018, 12:51 pm


        Can’t handle the truth, can you? No surprise. At least you’re consistent.

        Compare the Muslims’ treatment of Jewish and Christian citizens of Al-Andalus in the 8th century and beyond to just a few of today’s examples of illegal/brutal occupier Zionist Jews’ of foreign origin well documented ongoing oppression/dispossession/brutalization/killing and expulsion of indigenous Palestinian Arab Muslims and Christians:
        “Four-year-old Palestinian boy dies of wounds from Israeli fire,” Al Jazeera, Dec. 12/18
        “Ahmed Abu Abed succumbed to wounds in Gaza after being injured by shrapnel during protests against Israel’s blockade.”
        “Palestinian teen killed by Israeli forces during Ramallah protest
        Mahmoud Nakhleh, 18, was shot in the abdomen during a protest against the Israeli army in the al-Jalazun refugee camp.” Aljazeera, Dec. 14/18
        “West Bank: Settler posters call for Palestinian president killing.” Al Jazeera, Dec. 14/18
        “Notices posted by Jewish settlers feature Mahmoud Abbas in the crosshairs and labelled a ‘supporter of terrorists’.”

        Furthermore, for the record:
        To quote Rabbi Menachem Froman, chief rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Tekoa, and a champion of inter-religious reconciliation: “[E]very Jew who learns the writings of the great sages – who, at the head of them all stands Maimonides – knows that our great thinkers wrote in the Arabic language, lived in Islamic states and participated with the great Muslim thinkers in the effort to explain the words of God, according to the paths of the sages and amidst the difficult bloody battles that we have had since the beginning of Zionism with the Muslims…. We know… that the war between the Jews and the Muslims is the work of the cursed devil. We know that Islam is named after peace.” (Haaretz, September 18, 2006)

        To quote Dr. Ella Habiba Shohat, Professor of Cultural Studies and Women’s Studies at the City University of New York (CUNY), a self described “Arab Jew” born in Israel of Iraqi ancestry now living in the United States: “Our history simply cannot be discussed in European Jewish terminology. As Iraqi Jews, while retaining a communal identity, we were generally well integrated and indigenous to the country, forming an inseparable part of its social and cultural life. Thoroughly Arabized, we used Arabic even in hymns and religious ceremonies. The liberal and secular trends of the 20th century engendered an even stronger association of Iraqi Jews and Arab culture, which brought Jews into an extremely active arena in public and cultural life. Prominent Jewish writers, poets and scholars played a vital role in Arab culture, distinguishing themselves in Arabic speaking theatre, in music, as singers, composers, and players of traditional instruments. ((“Reflections by an Arab Jew” – http://www.bintjbeil. com/E/occupatio n/arab_jew.html )

        “So, what did the Muslims do for the Jews? – How Islam Saved the Jews.”
        Lecture by Professor David J Wasserstein.
        David J Wasserstein is the Eugene Greener Jr. Professor of Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University. This article is adapted from last week’s [May, 2012] Jordan Lectures in Comparative Religion at the School of Oriental and African Studies.

        “Islam saved Jewry. This is an unpopular, discomforting claim in the modern world. But it is a historical truth. The argument for it is double. First, in 570 CE, when the Prophet Mohammad was born, the Jews and Judaism were on the way to oblivion. And second, the coming of Islam saved them, providing a new context in which they not only survived, but flourished, laying foundations for subsequent Jewish cultural prosperity – also in Christendom – through the medieval period into the modern world.

        “By the fourth century, Christianity had become the dominant religion in the Roman Empire. One aspect of this success was opposition to rival faiths, including Judaism, along with massive conversion of members of such faiths, sometimes by force, to Christianity. Much of our testimony about Jewish existence in the Roman Empire from this time on consists of accounts of conversions.

        “Great and permanent reductions in numbers through conversion, between the fourth and the seventh centuries, brought with them a gradual but relentless whittling away of the status, rights, social and economic existence, and religious and cultural life of Jews all over the Roman Empire.

        “A long series of enactments deprived Jewish people of their rights as citizens, prevented them from fulfilling their religious obligations, and excluded them from the society of their fellows.

        “Had Islam not come along, Jewry in the west would have declined to disappearance and Jewry in the east would have become just another oriental cult. This went along with the centuries-long military and political struggle with Persia. As a tiny element in the Christian world, the Jews should not have been affected much by this broad, political issue. Yet it affected them critically, because the Persian Empire at this time included Babylon – now Iraq – at the time home to the world’s greatest concentration of Jews.

        “Here also were the greatest centres of Jewish intellectual life. The most important single work of Jewish cultural creativity in over 3,000 years, apart from the Bible itself – the Talmud – came into being in Babylon. The struggle between Persia and Byzantium, in our period, led increasingly to a separation between Jews under Byzantine, Christian rule and Jews under Persian rule. Beyond all this, the Jews who lived under Christian rule seemed to have lost the knowledge of their own culturally specific languages – Hebrew and Aramaic – and to have taken on the use of Latin or Greek or other non-Jewish, local, languages. This in turn must have meant that they also lost access to the central literary works of Jewish culture – the Torah, Mishnah, poetry, midrash, even liturgy.”

        GET EDUCATED!!!

      • Boris on December 14, 2018, 1:15 pm


        Ok. Let me start slow for you.

        Do non Jewish Israelis pay special tax?

        Do Palestinians pay special tax?

        Are non Jewish Israelis banned from elections, can’t be politicians, judges, etc. ? Can’t testify in court against Jews?

        Try argue this, old fart…

      • Eva Smagacz on December 14, 2018, 5:07 pm


        you said: ““… not to harm the dhimmi … ” — dhimmis were required to pay special tax, could not be in a position of power, could not testify in a court against a Muslim, etc.”

        Sorry, just one of three is correct:

        dhimmis were paying for being protected and having autonomy. The rest is rubbish.

        Convince me that paying Jizyah tax is any different than paying Tribute or Jimi or Shinkou, because I don’t see much difference. 187/202

        This concerted effort to change the meaning of “dhimmitude”, or change the meaning of Jihad, or call resistance and fighting for freedom “terrorist” is a propaganda exercise that should be called for what it is:

        a desperate attempt to stir up Islamophobia.

      • Boris on December 15, 2018, 11:08 am

        @Eva Smagacz

        “Convince me…”

        Just read wikipedia , for example:

        “There were a number of restrictions on dhimmis. In a modern sense the dhimmis would be described as second-class citizens.

        Although dhimmis were allowed to perform their religious rituals, they were obliged to do so in a manner not conspicuous to Muslims. Display of non-Muslim religious symbols, such as crosses or icons, was prohibited on buildings and on clothing (unless mandated as part of distinctive clothing). Loud prayers were forbidden, as were the ringing of church bells and the blowing of the shofar. They were also not allowed to build or repair churches without Muslim consent. Moreover, dhimmis were not allowed to seek converts among Muslims. In the Mamluk Egypt, where non-Mamluk Muslims were not allowed to ride horses and camels, dhimmis were prohibited even from riding donkeys inside cities. Sometimes, Muslim rulers issued regulations requiring dhimmis to attach distinctive signs to their houses.”

        Of course, this terse language needs an interpretation. Dhimmis were not allowed to ride horses to that their heads would not be higher that a head of a Muslim. Muslim men could marry a non-Muslim woman, their children would have to be brought up as Muslims. Muslim women were not allowed to marry a non-Muslim. Muslims could not convert to other religions under punishment of death. There were other rituals of humiliation. For example, Muslim children were encouraged to throw stones at Jews, and Jews could not respond – only cover or run away.

        Dhimmi status was also very shaky – any time they could be put out side of law. This, for example, happened to Armenians in Ottoman empire. Turks declared all them traitors – just read about Armenian genocide.


      • annie on December 15, 2018, 4:51 pm

        Do Palestinians pay special tax?

        Let me start slow for you. palestinians have to turn over their water and land to the state who then gives it to the jewish colonists for free. how’s that not *special*?

        Muslim rulers issued regulations requiring dhimmis to attach distinctive signs to their houses

        at your link, bernard lewis claimed

        the restrictions to which they were subject were social and symbolic rather than tangible and practical in character. That is to say, these regulations served to define the relationship between the two communities, and not to oppress the Jewish population.

        do you think he’s wrong on that assessment?

        Muslim children were encouraged to throw stones at Jews

        what’s your source for this?

      • Boris on December 16, 2018, 9:07 am


        … and many, many more.

        Now, I have to stress, over the centuries Jews had it better with Muslims than with Christians. Yes, there was humiliation and an occasional massacre, but nothing on the scale of what was happening in Europe at that time.
        Furthermore, most Arab Christians are more antisemitic than Arab Muslims.

        All I am saying is that it was not as nice and peaceful between Jews and Muslims as some would like to believe.

      • annie on December 16, 2018, 1:41 pm

        boris, thanks. the quote on your eretzisroel leads to a link that doesn’t provide that quote. it’s (allegedly) from an article titled “Mosul in 1909” published in Middle Eastern Studies, Volume 7, 1971 by “H. E. Wilkie Young”. it was then picked up by bernard lewis published in a book he wrote titled “The Jews of Islam” published in 1987.

        interestingly i couldn’t find any other reference on google for H. E. Wilkie Young, i wonder if he ever wrote anything else. was he a scholar? nonetheless, i wonder who the british vice consul in mosel was in 1909? no name. hmm. but let’s just assume what he allegedly wrote about the stone throwing child was true. he witnesses a boy throwing a rock at 2 jews who summarily ignore him. and from this one act the author of your eretzisroel report, Joseph E. Katz concludes:

        What is the proper way to deal with an insolent Jew? To throw stones.

        and you conclude:

        Muslim children were encouraged to throw stones at Jews

        i’m just wondering, aside from this one reference to one nameless vice consul cited by one otherwise unheard of author in 1971 picked up by lewis in 1987 are there any other references to muslims having a policy or routine of stoning jews or other dhimmis? ie, are there any jews who wrote about that back in the days? scholars or scribes? they had a long history in iraq. i’m just curious if this allegation all rests on this one obscure report. because it’s the same source used by wiki also.

      • Mooser on December 16, 2018, 12:53 pm

        “All I am saying is that it was not as nice and peaceful between Jews and Muslims as some would like to believe.”

        Is that all you are saying? Very relieved to hear it. I was sure you would submit an invoice or an insurance claim.

      • amigo on December 16, 2018, 1:46 pm

        “I was sure you would submit an invoice or an insurance claim.” Mooser

        Borisnakoff sends those claims to Safeway and Lucky,s . They don,t contest them.

      • RoHa on December 16, 2018, 5:58 pm

        Time and circumstance have swept away my copy of the Thousand and One Nights, but I still recall there was a story in which an impoverished Muslim, in Baghdad, persuades a rich Jew to act as his advocate in court.

        Perhaps Gamal can pin that one down more precisely.

      • Boris on December 16, 2018, 9:45 pm
      • gamal on December 16, 2018, 10:13 pm

        “Perhaps Gamal can pin that one down more precisely.”

        I barely know it the only one that springs to mind is the Jewish Physicians story, I know there are some with Jewish viziers or officials etc

        there was an interesting article by Joe Horovitz Judeo-Arabian relations in pre-Islamic Arabia, westerners like to read all sorts of things into things they know little about,

        but I kind of liked The City of Brass in 1001,

        I read elsewhere “Muslims teach their children to stone Jews” ? you talk to your stupid brethren because I’ve had it with that shit, and My People are ok with that.

        but since we are talking 1001, a little “qulu ‘l qulub” food for the heart, that first ya habibi a full three minutes in, sounds like my aunt, she told me this is last that time “you will see me” matter of factly big hug no tears, we don’t do that, in 2007 it was, last time listening to her old accent that throaty husky voice, that old way of being they are strong as iron patient as stone and remorseless as water, I am getting weary with Zionist or “peace” folks bullshit, relying on people’s ignorance to lie and dissimulate has become like the most tedious thing on earth, not for any of the ah it makes Arabs cry nonsense, its so stupid and so redolent of the reductive idiocy that so often colours our view of others, but still city of brass and alf leila will have our spirits soaring in no time.. unless the Jews get us.

  5. johneill on December 14, 2018, 12:15 pm

    thankyou dr. kanaaneh for sharing your curiosity and learning process.

    • Misterioso on December 14, 2018, 4:00 pm


      For your further edification:

      Of the three Abrahamic faiths, only Islam recognizes the prophets of the other two. “Allah,” the Arabic word for “God,” is derived from “Allahah,” which also means “God” in Aramaic (the language of the Prophet Jesus), which is still spoken in parts of Syria.

      Under Islam, Jews and Christians, known as “dhimmis” or protected minorities, were not to be abused and were guaranteed protection as well as freedom of religion in exchange for accepting Muslim rule and paying a poll tax known as the jizya in lieu of army conscription, which was mandatory for Muslims. Both Muslims and dhimmis had to pay the kharaj, a property tax. Muslims, however, also had to pay the zakat, a tax of 2.5 percent on profits to finance support of the poor and needy.

      “In the Charter of Medina, he [the Prophet, Muhammad] guaranteed equal rights and freedoms to Christians and Jews. He also promised protection to a number of Christian monasteries. In one such covenant, he commanded Muslims to ensure the religious liberties of Christians for all times to come. He said: ‘Christians are my citizens, and by God, I hold out against anything that displeases them. No compulsion is to be on them. Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries. No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims’ houses.’” (“A Muslim’s Christmas Message,” by Kashif Chaudhry, Huffington Post, December25/15)

      The Prophet Muhammad’s Charter of Medina also calls for respect and tolerance towards Jews: “The Jews who attach themselves to our commonwealth shall be protected from all insults and vexations; they shall have an equal right with our own people to our assistance and good offices: The Jews… and all others domiciled in Yathrib [Medina], shall practice their religion as freely as the Muslims.”

      “[According to] Dr. Muqtedar Khan of the University of Delaware, “Rabbi Mukhayriq, of [the] Tha’labadh tribe in Medina, fought alongside Prophet Muhammad in the battle of Uhud and was martyred. Rabbi Mukhayriq also donated seven gardens with which the prophet formed the first waqf – a charitable endowment.” (“Let’s Make Canada a Model of Peace,” Mohammed Azhar Ali Khan, The Canadian Jewish News, January 10, 2013)

      Although rare and contrary to the teachings of Islam, there were occasions when Jews and Christians were treated badly by Muslims. These incidents, however, were isolated and as a rule, precipitated by external threats such as the Crusades and Europe’s imperialistic penetration of the Islamic world, particularly in the nineteenth century. The treatment of Christians and Jews by Muslims must also be seen in its historical context: “…Muslim policies were consistent with and often an improvement on the prevailing treatment of Jews and Christians as subject peoples in an age when equality was unknown and inconceivable. Similar legal protection for religious minorities in Europe did not appear for another millennium.” (Professor Charles Smith, “Palestine and the Arab Israeli Conflict,” p. 8)

      Regarding Palestine: In 638 CE Palestine fell to the Muslims under Caliph Umar (or Omar.) To this day, many Jews refer to the arrival of the Muslims as a “liberation” for Umar gave them unfettered access to Jerusalem, which they had been denied under the Christian Byzantines. He was equally generous to the Christians. “Never in the sorry story of conquest up to that day, and rarely since, were such noble and generous sentiments displayed by a conqueror as those extended to Jerusalem by Omar.” (Report by Sir William Fitzgerald on the Local Administration of Jerusalem, Jerusalem: Government Printer, 1945, p. 4)

      In 1187, Saladin liberated Jerusalem from the brutal Crusaders and invited the Jews the Crusaders had expelled to return and practice their faith freely.

      Although the great majority of Palestinians eventually converted to Islam, many Christians kept their faith as did most Jews. “The inhabitants of Palestine seem to have prospered during much of this period from the Muslim conquest to the appearance of the Crusaders…. Muslim rule was generally unobtrusive…. Friction among the religious communities and the official sanction of violence against one group or another were infrequent.” (Professor Charles Smith, ibid.)

      Not surprisingly, Palestine’s indigenous Arab Jews were among Zionism’s most ardent opponents. To quote Ronald Storrs, the first British military governor of Jerusalem: “The religious Jews of Jerusalem and Hebron and the Sephardim were strongly opposed to political Zionism…” (Storrs, Ronald, “Orientations,” Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1945)

      BTW, for the record, being an atheist, I have no religious “axe to grind.”

      • gamal on December 14, 2018, 9:32 pm

        Hey Misterioso, you are a real trojan,

        I wondering if you know of

        al aqwal al qawima fi hukm al naql min al kutub al qadima ( Just verdicts on the permissibility of Quoting from the Old Scriptures) by Ibrahim ibni Umar al Biq’ai, he defends the use of bible to understand the Quran and life at the end of Mamluk Egypt, Walid Saleh wrote a book available in English called

        In Defense of the Bible: A Critical Edition and Introduction to Al Biqai’s Bible Treatise.

        Walid Saleh, anyway thanks Mister, you walk the line, many thanks.

      • RoHa on December 15, 2018, 12:24 am

        “Of the three Abrahamic faiths,”

        There are more than three.

      • Boris on December 16, 2018, 9:58 pm


        “Of the three Abrahamic faiths, only Islam recognizes the prophets of the other two.”

        It is a joke, right? Judaism took root some 1,700 years before Islam, Christianity 700 years before. How would they “recognize” Mohammed who lived much later in 7th century?

        I have to admit – it was rather shrewd for Mohammed to declare himself to be the last prophet. Of course, he had to “recognize” other prophets in order to be the last one. So, your statement does not make sense.

        There are some of religious Jews who are against Israel – like Neturei Karta. They believe that the Jewish state has to be established by a Messiah and Israel is illegitimate because it was established before his coming. However, I am atheist and don’t care what they think.

      • gamal on December 16, 2018, 11:33 pm

        “it was rather shrewd for Mohammed to declare himself to be the last prophet”

        why shrewd? He died years ago, is it part of the Anti-Semitic transhistorical plot which is Islam.

        despite the fact that the well-meaning ingenue might think that, it is not what ‘seal of the Prophets’,” Khatam-nabiyan” means to many (33.40), because khatam is associated with khitam: end has always been disputed by Muslims, it means more properly “an endorsement of all Prophets” as bearing the seal of, principally the ones they had heard of not all from the bible, the conventional view, Muslim as much as that of any others is rather poorly attested and supported, just because a lot of Muslims say something that doesn’t make it so, it defies logic religious logic but logic nonetheless , it became a common legal interpretation because of all the seditious prophets who popped up, especially in Nejd, bloody bedouins, but you’d be surprised how many Muslims never understood it that way, but then you’d actually have to abandon the fervent rage of your ignorance.

        I guess you might get it if you knew the whole of “the confederates”, and he didn’t declare himself anything it’s just one of those things God said to test you, how do you feel you are doing? So far?

      • Boris on December 17, 2018, 11:15 am

        “why shrewd?”

        Look at many recognized or self-proclaimed prohets in Judaism and Christianity.

        Not a single one in Islam…

      • amigo on December 17, 2018, 12:16 pm

        “Look at many recognized or self-proclaimed prophets in Judaism and Christianity.” Boris

        //Oscar Wilde understood the futility of Prophesying .//

        “Far off, like a perfect pearl, one can see the city of God. It is so wonderful that it seems as if a child could reach it in a summer’s day. And so a child could. But with me and such as I am it is different. One can realise a thing in a single moment, but one loses it in the long hours that follow … ”

        – Oscar Wilde, “De Profundis”

        Tic , tic.

      • gamal on December 17, 2018, 2:03 pm

        “Not a single one in Islam…” oh dear not heard of the Ahmadiyya and it’s like French having a different word for everything things are different in Islam as there is, in Tasawuff and others who take a more complex view but its all interrelated that there is either the constant Prophet Khidr (Qidr, etc, pole of the universe) in every age or he kind of rememerges as different Individuals, from before Muhammad, sometimes they involve the “two horned one” in giving Khidr the water of life lots of versions,

        so I am upping your declarations with constant Charismatic contact, do you want to do Shaman next loads of those too,

        it’s a flat universe man but you’d be better off not so flat headed.

        and for anyone wanting fun, you must be yearning i sure am, here is Hindu/Islamic God Khidr, I know …weird huh

        “In India, the Prophet, Saint, or Deity known as Khwaja Khizr (Khadir), Pir Badar, or Raja Kidar, is the object of a still surviving popular cult, common to Muslims and Hindus. His principal shrine is on the Indus near Bakhar, where he is worshipped by devotees of both persuasions; the cult is however hardly less widely diffused in Bihar and Bengal. In the Hindu cult, the Khwaja is worshipped with lights and by feeding Brahmans at a well, and alike in Hindu and Muslim practice, by setting afloat in a pond or river a little boat which bears a lighted lamp. Iconographically Khwaja Khizr is represented as an aged man, having the aspect of a faqir, clothed entirely in green[1] and moving in the waters with a ‘fish’ as his vehicle’

      • Boris on December 17, 2018, 3:32 pm


        Ok. You win. He was not shrewd, he just tried.

        Are you using Google translation? If yes, from which language?

      • annie on December 17, 2018, 4:50 pm

        boris, did you open the link? it’s in english. no google translation necessary.

      • gamal on December 17, 2018, 5:06 pm

        “Ok. You win. He was not shrewd, he just tried”

        He didn’t do shit…as the evidence indicates,

        “Are you using Google translation?” for what

        ” If yes, from which language?” thats a good point, Google won’t be much help to you I would suggest in Quranic terms I favour Abu Ishaq al Thalabi, and you have to use Tabari and then I have annotated scholarly notes from my father and grandfather which delve all over, if you are not conversant with ancient Arabic poetry and up to the 8/900’s and a knowledge of syntax, metaphor, idiom, dialect the sound hadith for word usage social attitudes etc and possible range of meanings, Tabari always starts with a review of all the various readings and then makes an intricate argument about his preference, Fatiha takes a book to elucidate and Thalabi is better anyway that is if you need stuff explained I’ve moved on and do other things now as God intended.

        as if you give a shit.

  6. arobertsccl on December 14, 2018, 2:14 pm

    The Quran makes it very clear, Muslims must bring the true religion to those without the True God. It specifies tho that ‘the People of the Book, the Abrahamic religions of Christianity and Judaism are followers of the true God and not to be converted or converted. The Ottoman taxed non Turks but in return exempted them from the military service required of Turkish citizens. This exemption lasted until the end of the World War when Turkey was losing badly and began to ask Dhimmi to enlist. This provoked the first great migration of Palestinians, primarily Christian, to the West.
    On another point made about Andalusia, all Ottoman towns, including Jerusalem, were divided into religious quarters, allowing processions, special music, foods, etc to be enjoyed openly and freely in each. This is now changing. We see this in Jerusalem today, tho Jewish groups are moving into other quarters and there is a more modern renter’s market for Special places. But still people process and sing in their own neighbirhoods, holiday foods are sold and served there. I lived in a modern day Jewish neighborhood in Rabat where Jews lived freely. The key point is that the Andalusian saved and gave a home to Jews fleeing Christian persecution during the cruelty of the Christian Inquisitiin.

    • gamal on December 14, 2018, 2:37 pm

      “The Quran makes it very clear, Muslims must bring the true religion to those without the True God”

      No no it doesn’t, it makes clear that it’s none of the Muslims business, it states that quite clearly, it is extremely foolish to write the “Quran says” without extensive study of the various tafsirs, commentaries etc it’s quite clear you have no idea what Muslims understand from the Quran and subsidiary materials…Islam is not a rougher form of western Christianity, it’s history is quite different especially when it comes to interacting with other peoples and other religions.

    • lagavulin on December 15, 2018, 10:02 am

      “The key point is that the Andalusian saved and gave a home to Jews fleeing Christian persecution during the cruelty of the Christian Inquisitiin.”

      The Spanish Inquisition didn’t exist at that time. There was a Medieval Roman Inquisition, applied mainly to Cathars and later Hussites and others, but it was not enforced in Spain or Portugal. When the later Inquisition started to be applied to Conversos (not Jews as such, mind) and converted Muslims, the Moorish kingdoms in Andalusia didn’t exist any more.

      The main point, to go back to Hatim’s article, is that Jews were not particularly important in Moorish Andalusia and even less in the Christian kingdoms of Northern Spain and Portugal. The epic poem of the time, “Cantar de Mio Cid” mentions a Jew just once, when the Cid needed to borrow some money in Burgos. There were a couple of Jews who escalated to high positions under the Cordoba caliphs, to be sure, usually as accountants, but that was all. The moors tolerated them, as “people of the book” but didn’t needed them.
      As for Jewish intellectuals in Andalusia, I wonder how wide a reach they had. Maimonides essentially wrote rabbinical material interesting only for other Jews and the rest was taken from Aristoteles or previous Arab writers such as Avicenna or Averroes.
      I don’t know what Andalusian history they teach in Israel, but reducing it to a confrontation between Christians and Jews while ignoring the Moors (not necessarily Arabs) is foolish.

  7. klm90046 on December 14, 2018, 5:26 pm

    “There was no Palestine at the time of Jesus.”

    @Boris. You’re right, Boris, there was no Palestine at the time of Jesus. There was only Israel, and David ben Gurion was prime minister.

    • Boris on December 16, 2018, 12:11 pm

      I will give you two for the price of one.

      There was Kingdom of Judea – which Romans called a province of Judea. Jesus was crucified as a rebel fighting to liberate his homeland.

      Another Jewish state – Israel – was destroyed centuries earlier.

  8. Ossinev on December 16, 2018, 2:08 pm

    “Another Jewish state – Israel – was destroyed centuries earlier”

    And the latest Jewish state (aka foreign Jewish cult colony) is destroying itself as we speak.

    Tick tick.

  9. miriam6 on December 17, 2018, 7:51 pm

    For a site so vehemently committed ( rightfully so ) to opposing the Israeli invasion and occupation of Palestinian lands it is sheer hypocrisy that MW publishes an article which fails to mention the bald historical fact – that the Muslim conquest of Spain was an invasion:

    By 700 CE, with famine in the Toledo, strife among the aristocracy and chaos throughout the peninsula, the Visigothic kingdom was falling apart. This paved the way for the Muslim invasion of 711, which set Spain’s destiny quite apart from the rest of Europe.

    • oldgeezer on December 18, 2018, 10:47 am

      The world has had some time to get over it given the 1,300+ years that have elapsed.
      On a serious note though it’s rather implied. I am struggling to think of any historical conquest that didn’t involve invasion. Thing is all nations decided that conquest is no longer acceptable over a hundred years ago. Israel agreed and signed those conventions as well.

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