Tuesday, March 2, 2010

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Caliph 'Umar's contract with the Christians and Jews – the template for dhimmitude.

Unknown and little commented upon, but rather significant.

by Ferdinand III

The 2nd Caliph after the death of mad Mohammed was 'Umar, a worthy general, a battle tested veteran and most importantly, a fanatical Muslim. His reign lasting from 634 AD to 644 AD was perhaps the single most important explosion of Islamic imperialism and violence in history. 'Umar conquered much of the eastern Mediterranean including the Byzantium empire's holdings in the Levant, Syria, and Gaza. It gave the Muslims a platform for the later conquest of central Asia, India and the rest of North Africa. Muslims covet and adore 'Umar. What they neglect to tell anyone is that like Mohammed, the man was a fascist, who hated non-Muslims and imposed totalitarian rule over non-Muslims in his new domains.

When the original Muslim fascist Mohammed thankfully expired in 632 AD [would that he had never been born], his chief general and fellow Quraysh tribe member and uncle Abu Bakr took over. Bakr died within 2 years and spent most of the time consolidating the Muslim hold on Arabia and leading some raids into Byzantium. He was succeeded in 634 AD by yet another uncle of Mohammed – 'Umar – who was declared Caliph and charged to fulfil Mohammed's wish that Islam would expand and conquer Rome and Persia.

'Umar's Muslim armies invaded the two far more sophisticated and wealthier empires to the north and east. 'Umar was fortunate. The Byzantine's and the Persians had been in continuous war for over a century. Both empires were financially weak and physically and existentially exhausted. Neither took the Arabs seriously. A combination of lethargy, ignorance, poor generalship, and Arab fanaticism conspired to denude Byzantium of huge tracts of Christian territory, and the Persians of their entire empire. By 640, 'Umar's military thrusts had brought all of Mesopotamia and most of Syria and Palestine under the control of Islam. Egypt was conquered by 642 and the Persian Empire by 643. Thus the richest provinces of Eastern Christendom and the advanced imperial state of Persia fell to the Muslims within a mere 9 years. It is without doubt, one of the most colossal military disasters to befall civilization in history. Untutored, pagan Arabs, fuelled by the fascism and gibberish of the Koranic-Arab moon cult, were now masters of some of the most prized and wealthiest lands in the world.

'Umar quickly established the intolerance and hierarchical status of Islamic rule. Male Muslims were exempt from taxation in the conquered territories. Ruling over this vast territory would be Arab males from the Quraysh tribe. Next in the sequence of power would be non-Quraysh Arab Muslims. Darker skinned male Muslims and non-Arabs would be the next hierarchical level. At the bottom would be females, Jews and Christians and slaves. Dhimmitude would mean the forcible taxation of non-Muslims and the extraction through the jiyza [head tax], and kharaj [trade and produce tax set at 50-75% of output]. The Muslim elite would grow fabulously wealthy as the taxes denuded the non-Muslim of their property and assets. But this is not how Muslims and their Western admirers see it – they view 'Umar and the establishment of Koranic fascism as an act of genius: 

“His most far-reaching innovations were in the area of building a financial structure to the empire. He understood that the most important aspect of the empire was a stable financial structure for the government. To this end, he built an efficient system of taxation and brought the military directly under the financial control of the state.” 

So says one admiring Muslim 'historian'. 'Umar's supposed financial acumen amounted to little more than thieving the riches and properties of non-Muslims.  Squatting, extortion and punishing taxes are hardly the hallmarks of genius.

'Umar was little different than Mohammed. In fact he learnt his Muslim intolerance and vitriolic hate directly from the insane founder of the moon-cult. 'Umar's purpose was the complete subjugation of the non-Muslims resident in the newly conquered territories. He had no interest in multi-cult, inter-faith harmony. His real aim was to tax-farm and humiliate the non-Muslims and enrich himself and his band of Muslim marauders. In that objective he was extremely successful.

It is obvious that Muslims hated and despised the Jew and Christian. The Koran makes it clear that non-Muslims must be taxed, humbled and debased. If they 'annoy' their Muslim masters they should also be killed. 'Umar would have ardently believed in the Koran's supremacist ravings that Islam must dominate the world – with the aid of the moon deity – and that Muslims were superior humans. He also would have heard the last 3 wishes of Mohammed which included killing all the Jews and Christians and expanding Islam to rule the globe.

When 'Umar conquered Jerusalem he created a 'pact' or agreement between the conquerors and the conquered dhimmis or second class citizens. It is not entirely clear if the surviving examples of this pact are certain copies or second hand accounts. But what is certain is that 'Umar did create a covenant between those who would be ruled and their Muslim overlords. The importance of this formulation cannot be ignored. 'Umar's pact was based on Koranic and Islamic 'law' and rigidified the nominal-slave status of all Jews and Christians. It was also used by later Muslim imperialists and adventurers as a rationale to impose 'Umar-style totalitarianism on their subjected peoples. For Muslims of course 'Umar is a great hero. For the person interested in liberty, freedom and civilization he is just another despot – as fascistic and deluded as Mohammed, Napoleon or Hitler.

An example of 'Umar's compact is the one translated from a Muslim writer and theologian, al Turtushi, Siraj al Muluk, in Cairo in 1872. Turtushi shows that 'Umar created a document to outline how Muslims and Jews and Christians will interact. It has none of the aspects ascribed to Islam by historical revisionism, Western multi-cults; or the Islamophiles at Western Universities. It is as oppressive, rigid, anti-humanist and intolerant a creed as anything the Stalinists or Nazis could conjure up. It included inter-alia:

·We [meaning the Jews and Christians] shall not build new monasteries, churches, convents or monks’ cells in our cities or in their vicinity.  Should any of these fall into ruins, we shall not repair, by day or night, those in our own neighborhoods or those situated in the quarters of the Muslims.

·We shall keep our gates wide open for passersby and travelers.  All Muslims that pass our way are to be given board and lodging for as long as three days.

·We shall not hide any spy from the Muslims or give them sanctuary in our churches or shelter them in our homes.

· We shall not teach our children the Qur'an

· We shall not proclaim our religion publicly nor attempt to convert anyone to it. We shall not forbid any of our kin from embracing Islam if they desire to do so.

· We shall show deference toward Muslims.  If they wish to sit, we shall rise from our seats.

· We shall not attempt to resemble Muslims by imitating any of their garments, as for example, with the qalansuwa (a conical cap)  turbans, footwear or parting of the hair in Arab fashion.  We shall not imitate their way of speech nor shall we adopt their kunyas (Arabic byname, such as "abu Khattib").   

· We shall not mount on saddles

· We shall not gird ourselves with swords, bear any kind of arms or conceal weapons on our bodies.

· We shall not engrave Arabic inscriptions on our signet seals.

· We shall not sell fermented drinks.

· We identify ourselves as non-Muslims by clipping the forelocks of our heads.  

· We shall always dress in the same manner wherever we go and we shall bind the zunar (a kind of belt) around our waists.

· We shall not display our crosses or our books on the roads or in the markets of the Muslims. We shall use only clappers very softly in our churches. We shall not raise our voices in mourning when following our dead.

·We shall not shine lights on any of the roads of the Muslims or in their markets. 

· We shall not bury our dead near the Muslims.

·We shall not take slaves who have been allotted to Muslims.

·We shall not build houses of taller elevation than the houses of Muslims.

(When I brought the letter to 'Umar - may Allah be pleased with him - he added the clause "We shall not strike any Muslim."

·We accept these conditions for ourselves and for the people of our community, and in return we shall be guaranteed security.  If we in any way violate these regulations, for which we ourselves stand surety, we forfeit our covenant [dhimma] status and shall become liable to the penalties for rebelliousness and sedition.

Then 'Umar - may Allah be pleased with him - wrote: "Sign what they have requested, but add two clauses that will also be binding upon them; namely, they shall not buy anyone who has been taken prisoner by the Muslims, and that anyone who deliberately strikes a Muslim will forfeit the protection of this pact.  

The intent of the covenant is obvious. Non-Muslims are to be humiliated into second-class citizenry. They cannot openly worship, talk loudly, build, bear arms, or in any way mimic the ruling Islamic class. The broad nature of this compact also gives Muslims ample and easy opportunity to punish, sur-tax, enslave or kill those who transgress its laws. In fact this is what occurred. Jews and Christians were routinely found guilty of infractions which resulted in an increase in the kharaj tax; the rape and enslavement of their women, exile or even death. The life of Maimonides the Jewish theologian who tried to incorporate Aristotelian theory into the Torah is illustrative of this point. Maimonides and his family were hounded, beaten, and pushed from Morocco across the Arab empire finally settling in hardship and penury near Cairo. Their crime was being Jewish and supposedly breaking 'Umar's pact.

'Umar's proclamation is a significant event in Muslim history. It provided the template for how Muslims would rule their imperial domains. It enshrined the racism and intolerance found in the Koran, within Muslim administration. Finance and society became inseparably subservient to Koranic theology. The church had taken over the normative functions of the state. Non-Muslims were tax slaves who needed to be routinely humiliated and to feel that they were far inferior to their Muslim rules.

'Umar thus consolidated the fascism of Mohammed into a social decree. But never mind. The really smart people and their Muslim allies will still tell us that a pagan fascism is peace, and the utter evisceration of rights, laws, private property, self-respect and human life means 'moderation'.