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Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Topic: Al andalus (i.e. Spain) (Read 5886 times)
Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
September 15, 2010, 05:16:43 PM »
MADRID, Spain (CNN) -- Spanish police Tuesday arrested a Spanish soldier and his Russian girlfriend for allegedly posting videos on the Internet promoting Islamic extremist views and calling for attacks in Spain, a Ministry of Interior statement said.
The suspects, both 23 years old and practicing Muslims, were arrested in the southern Spanish city of Granada. They were identified as Christian Peso Ruiz Coello, born in Granada, and Maria Choubina, born in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in 1985.
Their videos allegedly aimed to inspire Islamic extremists to carry out attacks, using messages such as a call to liberate "Al Andalus," the vast portion of Spain under Muslim rule for centuries during the Middle Ages until the Catholic monarchs conquered the last bastion of Granada, in 1492.
Last Edit: September 15, 2010, 05:39:20 PM by Crafty_Dog
Re: Al andalus
Reply #1 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:18:17 PM »
"Our raids will not encompass just the Muslim Sahara, but will go beyond it… Al-Andalus [i.e. Muslim Spain] is before our eyes, and with Allah's help we will take back the land of Islam and what was plundered from our forefathers, no matter how long ago this takes…
Re: Al andalus
Reply #2 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:27:53 PM »
Spain fears Islamists reclaiming "al-Andalus" By Sinikka Tarvainen
dpa German Press Agency
Published: Wednesday March 7, 2007
By Sinikka Tarvainen,
Madrid- While the international spotlight is on 29 suspects
on trial for the 2004 Madrid train bombings, Spanish police are
working behind the scenes to counter a growing threat of new attacks.
Radicals inspired by al-Qaeda have stepped up propaganda and
recruitment activities in Spain, a country they claim as a part of
the Islamic world because of its Muslim past, according to police
**Gosh, if only the Spanish were nicer to them, right JDN?**
Islamist websites have also long called for a reconquest of al-
Andalus, a Moorish name for Spain, parts of which were ruled by
Muslims for nearly eight centuries until 1492.
Re: Al andalus
Reply #3 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:34:11 PM »
“Al-Qaeda has not lost sight of the global jihad and, in exchanges with the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC), it has told them to quickly attack local targets and reminds them that their real goal is to cross into Al Andalus,” it said.
Al Andalus is the Arabic name for the parts of the Iberian peninsula that were under Muslim, or Moorish, control for almost 800 years until the late 15th century.
The GSPC last year changed its name to Al-Qaeda’s Branch in the Islamic Maghreb.
In September 2007, Al-Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri called for Al Andalus to be restored to the Islamic world, saying the first step needs to be the “cleansing’ of Spaniards and French from the Maghreb.
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #4 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:42:20 PM »
And of course the proposed name for the proposed Ground Zero Mosque (Cordoba House) is just a coincidence , , ,
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #5 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:46:50 PM »
The Moroccan authorities say they have broken up a militant cell operating in several towns in the kingdom.
The group allegedly had links with al- Qaeda and police described the 15 people arrested as "dangerous".
They had electronic and chemical materials used to make explosives, reports the state press agency, MAP.
It is the fourth such network Morocco says it has broken up this year. An al-Qaeda-inspired group has said it was behind recent attacks in Algeria.
"The members of this structure, known as
"Fath al-Andalous" [Conquest of Andalusia],
planned to carry out attacks in Morocco and had formed operational links with foreign extremists who have pledged allegiance to the al-Qaeda organisation," MAP says.
Speaking of the Cordoba House.....
Reply #6 on:
September 15, 2010, 05:51:07 PM »
In fact, the proposed structure is known in Islamic history as a rabat -- literally a connector. The first rabat appeared at the time of the Prophet.
The Prophet imposed his rule on parts of Arabia through a series of ghazvas, or razzias (the origin of the English word "raid"). The ghazva was designed to terrorize the infidels, convince them that their civilization was doomed and force them to submit to Islamic rule. Those who participated in the ghazva were known as the ghazis, or raiders.
After each ghazva, the Prophet ordered the creation of a rabat -- or a point of contact at the heart of the infidel territory raided. The rabat consisted of an area for prayer, a section for the raiders to eat and rest and facilities to train and prepare for future razzias. Later Muslim rulers used the tactic of ghazva to conquer territory in the Persian and Byzantine empires. After each raid, they built a rabat to prepare for the next razzia.
It is no coincidence that Islamists routinely use the term ghazva to describe the 9/11 attacks against New York and Washington. The terrorists who carried out the attack are referred to as ghazis or shahids (martyrs).
Thus, building a rabat close to Ground Zero would be in accordance with a tradition started by the Prophet. To all those who believe and hope that the 9/11 ghazva would lead to the destruction of the American "Great Satan," this would be of great symbolic value.
Faced with the anger of New Yorkers, the promoters of the project have started calling it the Cordoba House, echoing President Obama's assertion that it would be used to propagate "moderate" Islam.
The argument is that Cordoba, in southern Spain, was a city where followers of Islam, Christianity and Judaism lived together in peace and produced literature and philosophy.
In fact, Cordoba's history is full of stories of oppression and massacre, prompted by religious fanaticism. It is true that the Muslim rulers of Cordoba didn't force their Christian and Jewish subjects to accept Islam. However, non-Muslims could keep their faith and enjoy state protection only as dhimmis (bonded ones) by paying a poll tax in a system of religious apartheid.
If whatever peace and harmony that is supposed to have existed in Cordoba were the fruit of "Muslim rule," the subtext is that the United States would enjoy similar peace and harmony under Islamic rule.
A rabat in the heart of Manhattan would be of great symbolic value to those who want a high-profile, "in your face" projection of Islam in the infidel West.
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #7 on:
September 16, 2010, 01:14:16 PM »
Unfortunately for Spain's Muslims, the militants who swear loyalty to Osama bin Laden are history buffs too. In claiming responsibility for the March bombings, they cited the loss of "Al Andalus" as motivation.
"We will continue our jihad until martyrdom in the land of Tarik Ben Ziyad," they said in a communique issued after the massacre, alluding to the Moorish warrior and original Islamic conqueror of the Iberian peninsula.
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #8 on:
September 16, 2010, 01:18:21 PM »
Andalusian Myth, Eurabian Reality
Inventing the past, and denying the present. A Jihad Watch EXCLUSIVE essay by Bat Ye'or and Andrew G. Bostom:
On Sunday, April 18, 2004, this revealing exchange took place between outgoing Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar, and interviewer Chris Wallace of FoxNews:
Chris Wallace: "In the apartment that was blown up, police found a videotape in which the bombers referred to Spain as Andalusia, what it was called by the Muslim Moors before they were driven out in 1492."
Jose Maria Aznar (through the translator): "So this means that Iraq, for them, was just a pretext. In the eyes of Islamic terrorism, it looks at the West, and Spain is a very special part of this parcel, because they feel that to recover Spain is to get back some of their territory."
Islamic scholar Mordechai Nisan recently discussed the contention by the founder of the Institute of Islamic Education, M. Amir Ali, that Medieval Spain had actually been "liberated" by Muslim forces, who "deposed its tyrants". Nisan extrapolated this ahistorical narrative line, and pondered:
"Reflecting on March 11, as Muslim terrorism killed 200 and wounded 1,400 in Madrid, one wonders whether one day this event will also not be commemorated as a liberating moment. "
Events surrounding the completion of the new Granada Mosque, which was marked by celebratory announcements July 10, 2003 of a "...return of Islam to Spain", were also consistent with Nisan's dark musings. At a conference entitled "Islam in Europe" that accompanied the opening of the mosque, disconcerting statements were made by European Muslim leaders. Specifically, the keynote speaker at this conference, Umar Ibrahim Vadillo, a Spanish Muslim leader, encouraged Muslims to cause an economic collapse of Western economies (by ceasing to use Western currencies, and switching to gold dinars), while the German Muslim leader Abu Bakr Rieger told Muslim attendees to avoid adapting their Islamic religious practices to accommodate European (i.e., Western Enlightenment?) values.
Shortly after this event, a Wall Street Journal editorialist in a grossly distorted encomium to Muslim Spain, mentioned the "pan-confessional humanism" of Andalusian Islam, and even asserted: "one could argue that the oft-bewailed missing 'reformation' of Islam was under way there until it was aborted by the Inquisition."
María Rosa Menocal, Yale Professor of Spanish and Portuguese, in her 2002 hagiography of Muslim Spain, The Ornament of the World, has further maintained that "the new Islamic polity not only allowed Jews and Christians to survive, but following Qur'anic mandate, by and large protected them."
We believe that reiterating these ahistorical, roseate claims about Muslim Spain abets the contemporary Islamist agenda, and retards the evolution of a liberal, reformed "Euro-Islam" fully compatible with post-Enlightenment Western values.
Iberia (Spain) was conquered in 710-716 AD by Arab tribes originating from northern, central and southern Arabia. Massive Berber and Arab immigration, and the colonization of the Iberian peninsula, followed the conquest. Most churches were converted into mosques. Although the conquest had been planned and conducted jointly with a strong faction of royal Iberian Christian dissidents, including a bishop, it proceeded as a classical jihad with massive pillages, enslavement, deportations and killings.
Toledo, which had first submitted to the Arabs in 711 or 712, revolted in 713. The town was punished by pillage and all the notables had their throats cut. In 730, the Cerdagne (in Septimania, near Barcelona) was ravaged and a bishop burned alive. In the regions under stable Islamic control, Jews and Christians were tolerated as dhimmis - like elsewhere in other Islamic lands - and could not build new churches or synagogues nor restore the old ones. Segregated in special quarters, they had to wear discriminatory clothing. Subjected to heavy taxes, the Christian peasantry formed a servile class attached to the Arab domains; many abandoned their land and fled to the towns. Harsh reprisals with mutilations and crucifixions* would sanction the Mozarab (Christian dhimmis) calls for help from the Christian kings. Moreover, if one dhimmi harmed a Muslim, the whole community would lose its status of protection, leaving it open to pillage, enslavement and arbitrary killing.
By the end of the eighth century, the rulers of North Africa and of Andalusia had introduced Malikism, one of the most rigorous schools of Islamic jurisprudence, and subsequently repressed the other Muslim schools of law. Three quarters of a century ago, at a time when political correctness was not dominating historical publication and discourse, Evariste Lévi-Provençal, the pre-eminent scholar of Andalusia, wrote: "The Muslim Andalusian state thus appears from its earliest origins as the defender and champion of a jealous orthodoxy, more and more ossified in a blind respect for a rigid doctrine, suspecting and condemning in advance the least effort of rational speculation."
The humiliating status imposed on the dhimmis and the confiscation of their land provoked many revolts, punished by massacres, as in Toledo (761, 784-86, 797). After another Toledan revolt in 806, seven hundred inhabitants were executed. Insurrections erupted in Saragossa from 781 to 881, Cordova (805), Merida (805-813, 828 and the following year, and later in 868), and yet again in Toledo (811-819); the insurgents were crucified, as prescribed in Qur'an 5:33*.
The revolt in Cordova of 818 was crushed by three days of massacres and pillage, with 300 notables crucified and 20 000 families expelled. Feuding was endemic in the Andalusian cities between the different sectors of the population: Arab and Berber colonizers, Iberian Muslim converts (Muwalladun) and Christian dhimmis (Mozarabs). There were rarely periods of peace in the Amirate of Cordova (756-912), nor later.
Al-Andalus represented the land of jihad par excellence. Every year, sometimes twice a year, raiding expeditions were sent to ravage the Christian Spanish kingdoms to the north, the Basque regions, or France and the Rhone valley, bringing back booty and slaves. Andalusian corsairs attacked and invaded along the Sicilian and Italian coasts, even as far as the Aegean Islands, looting and burning as they went. Thousands of people were deported to slavery in Andalusia, where the caliph kept a militia of tens of thousand of Christian slaves brought from all parts of Christian Europe (the Saqaliba), and a harem filled with captured Christian women. Society was sharply divided along ethnic and religious lines, with the Arab tribes at the top of the hierarchy, followed by the Berbers who were never recognized as equals, despite their Islamization; lower in the scale came the mullawadun converts and, at the very bottom, the dhimmi Christians and Jews.
The Andalusian Maliki jurist Ibn Abdun (d. 1134) offered these telling legal opinions regarding Jews and Christians in Seville around 1100 C.E.: "No...Jew or Christian may be allowed to wear the dress of an aristocrat, nor of a jurist, nor of a wealthy individual; on the contrary they must be detested and avoided. It is forbidden to [greet] them with the [expression], 'Peace be upon you'. In effect, 'Satan has gained possession of them, and caused them to forget God's warning. They are the confederates of Satan's party; Satan's confederates will surely be the losers!' (Qur'an 58:19 [modern Dawood translation]). A distinctive sign must be imposed upon them in order that they may be recognized and this will be for them a form of disgrace."
Ibn Abdun also forbade the selling of scientific books to dhimmis, under the pretext that they translated them and attributed them to their co-religionists and bishops. In fact, plagiarism is difficult to prove since whole Jewish and Christian libraries were looted and destroyed. Another prominent Andalusian jurist, Ibn Hazm of Cordoba (d. 1064), wrote that Allah has established the infidels' ownership of their property merely to provide booty for Muslims.
In Granada, the Jewish viziers Samuel Ibn Naghrela and his son Joseph, who protected the Jewish community, were both assassinated between 1056 to 1066, followed by the annihilation of the Jewish population by the local Muslims. It is estimated that up to five thousand Jews perished in the pogrom by Muslims that accompanied the 1066 assassination. This figure equals or exceeds the number of Jews reportedly killed by the Crusaders during their pillage of the Rhineland, some thirty years later, at the outset of the First Crusade.
The Granada pogrom was likely to have been incited, in part, by the bitter anti-Jewish ode of Abu Ishaq, a well known Muslim jurist and poet of the times, who wrote: "Put them back where they belong and reduce them to the lowest of the low..turn your eyes to other [Muslim] countries and you will find the Jews there are outcast dogs...Do not consider it a breach of faith to kill them...They have violated our covenant with them so how can you be held guilty against the violators?"
The Muslim Berber Almohads in Spain and North Africa (1130-1232) wreaked enormous destruction on both the Jewish and Christian populations. This devastation- massacre, captivity, and forced conversion- was described by the Jewish chronicler Abraham Ibn Daud, and the poet Abraham Ibn Ezra. Suspicious of the sincerity of the Jewish converts to Islam, Muslim "inquisitors" (i.e., antedating their Christian Spanish counterparts by three centuries) removed the children from such families, placing them in the care of Muslim educators. Maimonides, the renowned philosopher and physician, experienced the Almohad persecutions, and had to flee Cordoba with his entire family in 1148, temporarily residing in Fez -- disguised as a Muslim -- before finding asylum in Fatimid Egypt.
Indeed, although Maimonides is frequently referred to as a paragon of Jewish achievement facilitated by the enlightened rule of Andalusia, his own words debunk this utopian view of the Islamic treatment of Jews: "..the Arabs have persecuted us severely, and passed baneful and discriminatory legislation against us...Never did a nation molest, degrade, debase, and hate us as much as they.."
A valid summary assessment of interfaith relationships in Muslim Spain, and the contemporary currents responsible for obfuscating that history, can be found in Richard Fletcher's engaging Moorish Spain. Mr. Fletcher offers these sobering, unassailable observations:
"The witness of those who lived through the horrors of the Berber conquest, of the Andalusian fitnah in the early eleventh century, of the Almoravid invasion- to mention only a few disruptive episodes- must give it [i.e., the roseate view of Muslim Spain] the lie. The simple and verifiable historical truth is that Moorish Spain was more often a land of turmoil than it was of tranquility...Tolerance? Ask the Jews of Granada who were massacred in 1066, or the Christians who were deported by the Almoravids to Morocco in 1126 (like the Moriscos five centuries later)...In the second half of the twentieth century a new agent of obfuscation makes its appearance: the guilt of the liberal conscience, which sees the evils of colonialism- assumed rather than demonstrated-foreshadowed in the Christian conquest of al-Andalus and the persecution of the Moriscos (but not, oddly, in the Moorish conquest and colonization). Stir the mix well together and issue it free to credulous academics and media persons throughout the western world. Then pour it generously over the truth...in the cultural conditions that prevail in the west today the past has to be marketed, and to be successfully marketed it has to be attractively packaged. Medieval Spain in a state of nature lacks wide appeal. Self-indulgent fantasies of glamour...do wonders for sharpening up its image. But Moorish Spain was not a tolerant and enlightened society even in its most cultivated epoch."
The socio-political history of Andalusia was characterized by a particularly oppressive dhimmitude that is completely incompatible with modern notions of equality between individuals, regardless of religious faith. At the dawn of the 21st century, we must insist that Muslims in the West adopt post-Enlightenment societal standards of equality, not "tolerance," abandoning forever their hagiography of the brutal, discriminatory standards practiced by the classical Maliki jurists of "enlightened" Andalusia.
*The Noble Qur'an- Three esteemed translations, online:
Sura 005, Verse 033
YUSUF ALI: "The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter;"
PICKTHAL: "The only reward of those who make war upon Allah and His messenger and strive after corruption in the land will be that they will be killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off, or will be expelled out of the land. Such will be their degradation in the world, and in the Hereafter theirs will be an awful doom;"
SHAKIR: "The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His messenger and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this world, and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement"
, is the author most recently of Islam and Dhimmitude: Where Civilizations Collide, and the forthcoming Eurabia.
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #9 on:
September 16, 2010, 01:40:50 PM »
Fascinating history GM.
I notice the year 1492 was the year Moors driven out of Spain.
It was also the year Jews were driven out of Spain.
Nowadays Christains and Jews seem to be more in alliance. In those days everyone hated us.
1492 was certainly a busy year for Spain.
****Back to Jewish History Sourcebook | Back to Medieval Sourcebook | Halsall History Web Sites Page |
Jewish History Sourcebook:
The Expulsion from Spain, 1492 CE
In the spring of 1492, shortly after the Moors were driven out of Granada, Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain expelled all the Jews from their lands and thus, by a stroke of the pen, put an end to the largest and most distinguished Jewish settlement in Europe. The expulsion of this intelligent, cultured, and industrious class was prompted only in part by the greed of the king and the intensified nationalism of the people who had just brought the crusade against the Muslim Moors to a glorious close. The real motive was the religious zeal of the Church, the Queen, and the masses. The official reason given for driving out the Jews was that they encouraged the Marranos to persist in their Jewishness and thus would not allow them to become good Christians.
The following account gives a detailed and accurate picture of the expulsion and its immediate consequences for Spanish Jewry. It was written in Hebrew by an Italian Jew in April or May, 1495.
And in the year 5252 , in the days of King Ferdinand, the Lord visited the remnant of his people a second time [the first Spanish visitation was in 1391], and exiled them. After the King had captured the city of Granada from the Moors, and it had surrendered to him on the 7th [2d] of January of the year just mentioned, he ordered the expulsion of all the Jews in all parts of his kingdom-in the kingdoms of Castile, Catalonia, Aragon, Galicia, Majorca, Minorca, the Basque provinces, the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, and the kingdom of Valencia. Even before that the Queen had expelled them from the kingdom of Andalusia 
The King gave them three months' time in which to leave. It ,vas announced in public in every city on the first of May, which happened to be the 19th day of the Omer, and the term ended on the day before the 9th of Ab. [The forty-nine days between the second of Passover and Shabuot are called Omer days. The actual decree of expulsion was signed March 31 and announced the first of May, the 19th day of the Omer. The Jews were to leave during in May, June, and July and be out of the country by August I, the 8th of Ab.]
About their number there is no agreement, but, after many inquiries, I found that the most generally accepted estimate is 50,000 families, or, as others say, 53,000- [This would be about 250,000 persons. Other estimates run from 100,000 to 800,000.] They had houses, fields, vineyards, and cattle, and most of them were artisans. At that time there existed many [Talmudic] academies in Spain, and at the head of the greatest of them were Rabbi Isaac Aboab in Guadalajara [probably the greatest Spanish rabbi of his day], Rabbi Isaac Veçudó in Leon, and Rabbi Jacob Habib in Salamanca [later author of a famous collection of the non-legal parts of the Talmud, the En Yaakob]. In the last named city there was a great expert in mathematics, and whenever there was any doubt on mathematical questions in the Christian academy of that city they referred them to him. His name was Abraham Zacuto. [This famous astronomer encouraged the expedition of Vasco da Gama.] . . .
In the course of the three months' respite granted them they endeavoured to effect an arrangement permitting them to stay on in the country, and they felt confident of success. Their representatives were the rabbi, Don Abraham Seneor, the leader of the Spanish congregations, who was attended by a retinue on thirty mules, and Rabbi Meïr Melamed, who was secretary to the King, and Don Isaac Abravanel [1437-1508], who had fled to Castile from the King of Portugal, and then occupied an equally prominent position at the Spanish royal court. He, too, was later expelled, went to Naples, and was highly esteemed by the King of Naples. The aforementioned great rabbi, Rabbi Isaac of Leon, used to call this Don Abraham Seneor: "Soné Or" ["Hater of Light," a Hebrew pun on Seneor], because he was a heretic, and the end proved that he was right, as he was converted to Christianity at the age of eighty, he and all his family, and Rabbi Meïr Melamed with him . [Seneor and his son-in-law, Meïr, were converted June 15, 1492; Ferdinand and Isabella were among the sponsors.] Don Abraham had arranged the nuptials between the King and the Queen. The Queen was the heiress to the throne, and the King one of the Spanish nobility. On account of this, Don Abraham was appointed leader of the Jews, but not with their consent.
The agreement permitting them to remain in the country on the payment of a large sum of money was almost completed when it was frustrated by the interference of a prior who was called the Prior of Santa Cruz. [Legend relates that Torquemada, Prior of the convent of Santa Cruz, thundered, with crucifix aloft, to the King and Queen: "Judas Iscariot sold his master for thirty pieces of silver. Your Highness would sell him anew for thirty thousand. Here he is, take him, and barter him away."] Then the Queen gave an answer to the representatives of the Jews, similar to the saying of King Solomon [ProverbS 2 1: 1]: "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water. God turneth it withersoever He will." She said furthermore: "Do you believe that this comes upon you from us? The Lord hath put this thing into the heart of the king." [Isabella says it is God's will that the Jews be expelled.]
Then they saw that there was evil determined against them by the King, and they gave up the hope of remaining. But the time had become short, and they had to hasten their exodus from Spain. They sold their houses, their landed estates, and their cattle for very small prices, to save themselves. The King did not allow them to carry silver and gold out of his country, so that they were compelled to exchange their silver and gold for merchandise of cloths and skins and other things- [Ever since 1480 Jews and Gentiles were forbidden to export precious metal, the source of a nation's wealth.]
One hundred and twenty thousand of them went to Portugal, according to a compact which a prominent man, Don Vidal bar Benveniste del Cavalleria, had made with the King of Portugal, and they paid one ducat for every soul, and the fourth part of all the merchandise they had carried thither; and he allowed them to stay in his country six months. This King acted much worse toward them than the King of Spain, and after the six months had elapsed he made slaves of all those that remained in his country, and banished seven hundred children to a remote island to settle it, and all of them died. Some say that there were double as many. Upon them the Scriptural word was fulfilled [Deuteronomy 28:32]: "Thy sons and thy daughters shall be given unto another people, etc" [all Spanish Jews, who were still in Portugal in 1493, were enslaved by King John (1481-1495). The children were sent to the isle of St. Thomas, off the coast of Africa.] He also ordered the congregation of Lisbon, his capital, not to raise their voice in their prayers, that the Lord might not hear their complaining about the violence that was done unto them.
Many of the exiled Spaniards went to Mohammedan countries, to Fez, Tlemçen, and the Berber provinces, under the King of Tunis. [These North African lands are across the Mediterranean from Spain.] On account of their large numbers the Moors did not allow them into their cities, and many of them died in the fields from hunger, thirst, and lack of everything. The lions and bears, which are numerous in this country, killed some of them while they lay starving outside of the cities. A Jew in the kingdom of Tlemçen, named Abraham, the viceroy who ruled the kingdom, made part of them come to this kingdom, and he spent a large amount of money to help them. The Jews of Northern Africa were very charitable toward them. A part of those who went to Northern Africa, as they found no rest and no place that would receive them, returned to Spain, and became converts, and through them the prophecy of Jeremiah was fulfilled [Lamentations 1:13]: "He hath spread a net for my feet, he hath turned me back." For, originally, they had all fled for the sake of the unity of God; only a very few had become converts throughout all the boundaries of Spain; they did not spare their fortunes; yea, parents escaped without having regard to their children.
When the edict of expulsion became known in the other countries, vessels came from Genoa to the Spanish harbors to carry away the Jews. The crews of these vessels, too, acted maliciously and meanly toward the Jews, robbed them, and delivered some of them to the famous pirate of that time who was called the Corsair of Genoa. To those who escaped and arrived at Genoa the people of the city showed themselves merciless, and oppressed and robbed them, and the cruelty of their wicked hearts went so far that they took the infants from the mothers' breasts.
Many ships with Jews, especially from Sicily, went to the city of Naples on the coast. The King of this country was friendly to the Jews, received them all, and was merciful towards them, and he helped them with money. The Jews that were at Naples supplied them with food as much as they could, and sent around to the other parts of Italy to collect money to sustain them. The Marranos in this city lent them money on pledges without interest; even the. Dominican Brotherhood acted mercifully toward them. [The Dominican monks were normally bitterly opposed to Jews.] On account of their very large number, all this was not enough. Some of them died by famine, others sold their children to Christians to sustain their life. Finally, a plague broke out among them, spread to Naples, and very many of them died, so that the living wearied of burying the dead.
Part of the exiled Spaniards went over sea to Turkey. Some of them were thrown into the sea and drowned, but those who arrived, there the King of Turkey received kindly, as they were artisans. He lent them money and settled many of them on an island, and gave them fields and estates. [The Turks needed smiths and makers of munitions for the war against Christian Europe.]
A few of the exiles were dispersed in the countries of Italy, in the city of Ferrara, in the [papal] countries of Romagna, the March, and Patrimonium, and in Rome. . . .
He who said unto His world, Enough, may He also say Enough unto our sufferings, and may He look down upon our impotence. May He turn again, and have compassion upon us, and hasten out salvation. Thus may it be Thy will!
REFERENCES TO TEXTBOOKS
Elbogen, pp. 80-86; Roth, pp. 218-232; Sachar, pp. 204-220.
READINGS FOR ADVANCED STUDENTS
Graetz, IV, pp. 334-356; Graetz-Rhine, IV, pp. 207-244; Margolis and Mary, pp. 440-476.
Abbott, G. F., Israel in Europe, pp. 141-166.
Milman, H. H., The History of the Jews, II, Book xxvi.
Prescott, W. H., History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella the Catholic, 11, Part I, Chap. xvii: "Expulsion of the Jews from Spain." An interesting. scholarly presentation.
ADDITIONAL SOURCE MATERIALS IN ENGLISH
Halper, B., Post-Biblical Hebrew Literature, "The Advantages of a Republic over a Monarchy," 11, pp. 221-224. A brief discussion on political science by Isaac Abravanel.
Lindo, E. H., The History of the Jews of Spain and Portugal, pp. 277-280 contains the decree of expulsion. Comments on the expulsion by Isaac Abravanel, financial adviser to Isabella, may be found on p, 284. Another contemporary account occurs on p. 285.
Marx, A., "The Expulsion of the Jews from Spain," JQR, 0. S., XX (1908), pp. 24off.; JQR, N. S., 11 (1911-1912), pp. 257-258. This is the complete account of which source No. 11 is an extract.
Jacob Marcus, The Jew in the Medieval World: A Sourcebook, 315-1791, (New York: JPS, 1938), 51-55
Later printings of this text (e.g. by Atheneum, 1969, 1972, 1978) do not indicate that the copyright was renewed)
This text is part of the Internet Jewish History Sourcebook. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts for introductory level classes in modern European and World history.
Unless otherwise indicated the specific electronic form of the document is copyright. Permission is granted for electronic copying, distribution in print form for educational purposes and personal use. If you do reduplicate the document, indicate the source. No permission is granted for commercial use of the Sourcebook.
© Paul Halsall, July1998
Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain)
Reply #10 on:
September 16, 2010, 02:11:19 PM »
In 1291 Isaac ben Samuel, a noted Kabbalist and Palestinian Jew, sought refuge in a Christian-controlled area of Spain after the collapse of the last Crusader kingdom in the Levant. He explained, “For, in the eyes of the Muslims, the children of Israel are as open to abuse as an unprotected field. Even in their law and statutes they rule that the testimony of a Muslim is always to be believed against that of a Jew. For this reason our rabbis of blessed memory have said, ‘Rather beneath the yoke of Edom [Christendom] than that of Ishmael [Islam]. They [the rabbis] plead for mercy before the Holy One, Blessed be He, saying, ‘Master of the World, either let us live beneath Thy shadow or else beneath that of the children of Edom’ (Talmud, Gittin 17a).”
Ben Samuel’s choice of Christian Spain is paradoxical, as Muslim Spain was supposed to have been a famous exception to the oppression of Jews that prevailed elsewhere among both Muslims and Christians. Islamic apologist Karen Armstrong enunciates the common wisdom when she says that “until 1492, Jews and Christians lived peaceably and productively together in Muslim Spain—a coexistence that was impossible elsewhere in Europe.” Even the U.S. State Department has proclaimed that “during the Islamic period in Spain, Jews, Christians, and Muslims lived together in peace and mutual respect, creating a diverse society in which vibrant exchanges of ideas took place.”
Yet the philosopher Maimonides, a Jew who lived for a time in Muslim Spain and then fled that supposedly tolerant and pluralistic land, remarked, “You know, my brethren, that on account of our sins God has cast us into the midst of this people, the nation of Ishmael, who persecute us severely, and who devise ways to harm us and to debase us.…No nation has ever done more harm to Israel. None has matched it in debasing and humiliating us. None has been able to reduce us as they have.…We have borne their imposed degradation, their lies, and absurdities, which are beyond human power to bear.”
Notably, Maimonides directed that Jews could teach rabbinic law to Christians, but not to Muslims. For Muslims, he said, will interpret what they are taught “according to their erroneous principles and they will oppress us. [F]or this reason … they hate all [non-Muslims] who live among them.” But the Christians, he said, “admit that the text of the Torah, such as we have it, is intact”—as opposed to the Islamic view that the Jews and Christians have corrupted their scriptures. Christians, continued Maimonides, “do not find in their religious law any contradiction with ours.”
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