ottoman navy

Müezzinzade Ali Pasha, the commander of the Ottoman fleet at Lepanto. He was killed in action during the battle when boarded. As depicted here, he was then beheaded to have his head placed on a pike. This German language paper printed after the battle heralds his death, as well as the liberation of approximately 15,000 of the Christian galley-slaves that the Ottomans relied on to row their fleet.

(Zentralbibliothek Zürich)

Mahmudiye (1829), ordered by the Ottoman Sultan Mahmud II and built by the Imperial Naval Arsenal on the Golden Horn in Istanbul, was for many years the largest warship in the world. She participated in many important naval battles, including the Siege of Sevastopol (1854-1855) during the Crimean War (1854-1856). She was decommissioned in 1874.

The French battleship Mirabeau bombarding Athens during the November events (source). She transported men to Athens in reaction to Greece’s neutrality. After almost hitting the Royal Palace, King Constantine became willing to compromise. By 1917, the Mirabeau’s primary duty was to guard the Mediterranean from the German-Ottoman warship, the SMS Goeben before remaining in Murdos for the remainder of the Great War.

So, I saw Wonder Woman today.

Good movie. Very good movie. The best of DC easily.

A lot has been said about the movie already by people far more qualified than me. So I’ll focus on the stuff I have some knowledge about: The historical background, especially the Germans.

- Overall, the German in the movie is pretty accurate, no matter if spoken or when written (e.g. on signs). Chris Pine’s interpretation of a (heavy) German accent was good.

- The soldiers chasing Chris Trevor land on Themyscira in boats that have the name “Schwaben” written on them. There was actually a German pre-dreadnought called SMS Schwaben in service during World War I and the silhouette we see is even fitting. The historic Schwaben, however, was in the Baltic Sea during the war. AFAIK, no German ship ever made it to the Medditeranean. Given the fact that Trevor infiltrated a facility in the Ottoman Empire, it should have been the German-commanded Ottoman Navy who chased him. Although British and French ships were firmly in command of the Mediterrenean at that time.

- The fight on the beach: I was very much impressed and “glad” to see that it wasn’t a one-sided affair at all. No matter their skills, it is still a skirmish between bow-and-sword-wielding warrios and soldiers armed with guns. I really liked that the Amazons - despite all their martial prowess - weren’t invincible.

- General Ludendorff: Perhaps the greatest weakness of the film. For those who don’t know him, General Erich Ludendorff was along with the much more well-known Hindenburg de facto in charge of the German war efforts. Ludendorff is a rather interesting topic and the sad thing is that he would have been kinda perfect for an Ares-influenced villain. However, the way he was portrayed - someway between more of a cruel Nazi and a superhuman - was disappointing. You can blame much on Ludendorff, but portraying as someone who kills - with joy - his own soldiers, collagues and even civilians is far more down the Nazi/villain road. I find this topic especially sensitive, as in WWI, the lines between “good” and “evil” were much more blurred than in WWII. Ludendorff felt more like a Nazi in the wrong time for me (despite the fact that racist issues weren’t touched from his POV).
To make things short: Ludendorff, who supported the concept that peace was merely an interval between wars, could have been so much more. For me, it feels like there was a need for a German villain who fulfilled certain stereotypes and then they looked up a name and gave it to him. In such cases, it would be better to create a new character. Of course, I’d wager only 2 out of 10 people would know the historical Ludendorff. And perhaps 2 out of 100 would care.

- Especially as the brief appearance of Field Marshal Douglas “Butcher” Haig (portrayed by James Cosmo, one of the high-ranking officers Trevor briefs on the new gas) is wonderfully in character, with him more or less stating that soldiers are meant to die and a few thousand more casualties don’t bother him really. Interestingly, Haig once said that both sides were rather careless when using poison, even when close to civilians.

- The ending after Ares’s death (strong performance by David Thewlis BTW, Professor Lupin went full dark side here) was very reconciling and perhaps showed that some of the soldiers were indeed posessed by Ares, which makes their actions less voluntary. Which I would find important considering the issues about “good and evil” in WWI as explained above.

Overall: A very refreshing experience on many levels. There’s always room for improvement of course, at least from the POV of an historian.

(Yes, I know it’s a superhero movie. No, I don’t like “300″. Historical event = Historical event. Yes, I know it’s not meant to be “realistic” and “accurate”.)

Sebastiano Venier, by Tintoretto. 

Venier was the commander of the Venetian Navy at Lepanto, which made up the single largest contingent of ships fielded by the Holy League against the Ottomans. His great success would see him elected Doge of Venice six years later.

(Kunsthistorisches Museum)

A beautiful – and rare COLORISED* shot! of the British battleship HMS Erin, from 1916. She was a 27,500-ton dreadnought originally commissioned by the Ottoman Empire, building in a British shipyard. The battleship, originally to be named ‘Reşadiye’ for the Ottoman Navy, was renamed (after seizure by the Royal Navy) HMS Erin, and she joined the British Grand Fleet shortly before the British declaration of war against Germany on August 5, 1916.

The Fall of Constantinople 1453 AD
Part 3 - Prophecies Fulfilled 

Suggested by haruspicus, kirkendauhl, deer-chaser

Part 1 - Backdrop - LINK
Part 2 - Basilic, the Turkish Super Cannon - LINK


Mehmed II and Caliphs before him had many titles like Sultan-i Rum (“Ruler of the Romans”) and Sahib al-Rum (”Master of the Romans”), being that the earlier Seljuk Sultanate of Rum (1077–1307) and later Ottoman Empire (1299–1923) sat upon land which had once been long held by the Romans. After the Capture of Constantinople Mehmed II declared himself Kayser-i Rum (“Caesar / Emperor of the Romans”). The Ottomans were often called Rumiyun (“Romans”) by their eastern Muslim neighbors. Though thought to denote just those ruling in Anatolia the term ‘Sultan-i Rum’ was meant to extend to the broader non-Muslim world to the west of Anatolia too, it was less geographical and more so referred to Sultans who ruled over non-Muslims. 

Ottoman Fleet instills Fear

The Byzantines would spend night and day in fear of an impending naval the Turks, this anxiety would persist for more than a month until the captured of the city.

Fatih Sultan Mehmed’s Land Transport of The Ottoman Navy from Galata into Golden Horn by Fausto Zonaro (1854–1929).

“On the twelfth of April, the Turkish fleet arrived at the harbor of Constantinople“ 

“- came to anchor at the anchorage called ‘The Columns’, two miles from Constantinople on the Black Sea side, and anchored in that place with many vehement cries, and sounding of castanets and tambourines, so as to fill our fleet and those in the city with fear.”

“And so a system was arranged to prevent our; enemies from making a sudden attack by night or by day, and it was decided to keep two men in turn on the walls of Pera, to take note if the Turkish fleet began to move towards ours; and if these watchmen saw a single fusta or galley or bregantino move or signs of any fusta being about to do so, at once they came to tell the captain of the galleys from Tana, because he had been put in charge of the harbor.”

“When news was brought to him of the movement of any ships, at once the captain had the battle trumpet sounded, and everyone sprang to arms, ready to join battle; and those on board the ships which were by the boom stood to their arms also, and we waited every hour for the Turkish fleet to come to attack us.

So each day we were in this difficulty, and in great fear, as I have said previously, having by day and by night to stand to our arms, and yet their fleet never moved, or if a galley did move, it went in the direction of Anatolia, or towards the mouth of the Black Sea, to go to their newly built castle; and their fleet never came to attack us, but made us stand to our arms from fear of them, from the twelfth of April until the twenty-ninth of May, all day and all night.”

Brave Janissaries

“- even if some of us should die, as in natural in war, and meet our destined end, you know well from the Qu’ran what the Prophet says, “that he who dies in battle shall dine whole in body with Mahomet, and drink with him in paradise and he shall take his rest in a green spot and fragrant with flowers, enjoying the company of women and virgins and he will bath in gorgeous baths. All these things he will enjoy in that place by God’s favor.” - Mehmed II

Drawing of a Janissary by Gentile Bellini (15th-century)

The brave Janissaries would rather die than leave the body of a comrade at the gates of the city.

“From the twelfth day of April until the eighteenth day of the same month there was little movement by sea or by land, except the usual bombardment by day and by night, and some skirmishing which the Turks engaged in regularly with those on the walls of the city. They found the Turks coming right up under the walls and seeking battle, particularly the janissaries, who are soldiers of the Turkish Sultan; none of them are afraid of death, but they came on like wild beasts, and when one or two of them were killed, at once more Turks came and took away the dead ones, carrying them on their shoulders as one would a pig, without caring how near they came to the city walls.

Our men shot at them with guns and crossbows, aiming at the Turk who was carrying away his dead countryman, and both of them would fall to the ground dead, and then there came other Turks and took them away, none fearing death, but being willing to let ten of themselves be killed rather than suffer the shame of leaving a single Turkish corpse by the walls.

On the 22nd of April the Turks used rollers that were coated in fat to drag their ships across the hill to the basin of Pera within the harbor of Constantinople, 72 ships made it across. In fear the Christians planned to set the Turkish fleet ablaze but the Genoese of Pera warned Mehmed of this plot and so on the 28th the Venetians set their plan into motion. The Venetians, unaware of the betrayal of the Genoese, went forward and failed terribly. On the 1st and 2nd of May, “The city was in great distress because of a growing lack of provisions, particularly of bread, wine and other things necessary to sustain life.”. On the 5th of May the Turks placed a cannon on the hill of Pera and caused great damage to the Christian fleet for days.

Byzantine Prophesies

1 - The statue of Constantine the Great’s hand points eastward, the column is inscribed, “From this direction will come the one who will undo me.”

“- the first prophecy made by Saint Constantine, who is on horseback on a column by the Church of Saint Sophia of this city, prophesying with his hand and saying, “From this direction will come the one who will undo me,” pointing to Anatolia, that is Turkey.- Nicolo Barbaro

2 - Cardinal Isidore wrote to the Pope that,
“Just as the city was founded by Constantine, son of Helena, so it is now tragically lost by another Constantine [XI], son of Helena.”

“Another prophecy which he made was that when there should be an Emperor called Constantine son of Helen, under his rule Constantinople would be lost,“
- Nicolo Barbaro

3 - There was a lunar eclipse days before the fall of the city
“and there was another prophecy that when the moon should give a sign in the sky, within a few days the Turks would have Constantinople.” - Nicolo Barbaro

4 - Monk Gennadios Scholarios said that the city would fall the same month [May] it was founded back in 330 AD by Constantine the Great.

“On the twelfth of May at midnight there came to the walls of the palace fifty thousand Turks well ordered, and these Turkish dogs surrounded the whole palace with fierce cries according to their custom, and with sounds of castanets and tambourines; and on this night they made a strong attack against the walls of the palace, so that the majority of those in the city thought that night that the city was lost.

15th century Ottomans - Art by Angus McBride
Osprey - ‘Men at Arms’ series - Armies of the Ottoman Turks 1300-1774

But our merciful Lord Jesus Christ did not wish that the city should be lost so cheaply that night, and also God wished the prophecy to be fulfilled. This prophecy was made by Saint Constantine, the first Emperor to hold Constantinople, and he prophesied that Constantinople should never be lost, until the moon rose darkened when it was at the full, that is, lacking the half of it; so the present time was not that at which the city was to be lost, although it is true that its destruction and the loss of the empire which belonged to it was drawing near.”

Failed Tunneling

On the 16th of May the Turks rushed towards the enemy harbor where the Christians had mistaken them for allies but they were discovered and both sides exchanged fire and until the Turks were chased off. On this same day the Turks were found to be digging a mine under the walls of the city and the Christians quickly did the same in an attempt catch and disable them.
[The following occurred quite often on many occasions]

“At once a search was made throughout the city for all the men experienced in mining, and when they were found, they were sent for by the Megaduke, who had them dig a mine inside the city, to find the Turkish one, and one tunnel met the other in such a way that ours found theirs, and our men were prepared for this, and quickly threw fire into theirs and burned all the props supporting it, so that the earth collapsed on top of the Turks and suffocated those who were in the mine or they were burned in the fire.”

Tower, Bridge and Cannon 

On the 17th of May the Turks attempted another naval assault only to be met with a flurry of 70 shots. On the eighteenth of May the Turks had constructed in less than a night, a tall and seemingly impregnable tower which stood taller than the walls.

Walls of Constantinople 

“- on this day the Turks shot a great number of arrows into the city from the place where the tower was, firing them, it seemed, from sheer high spirits, while our men were all very sad and fearful.”

On the 19th of May the Turks constructed a bridge (made up of barrels tied together and long beams to fasten them) to connect the harbor of Pera to Constantinople, they planned on stretching this bridge across the harbor when they attacked because if left out in any other situation then the enemy cannons would’ve destroyed it with ease [This ended up never being used]. Now remember that in all this time that has passed the Turks have been pounding the city walls with cannon fire since the beginning of the siege, the inhabitants of the city were working throughout this period repairing the walls with earth, barrels, etc.

“The cannon were very large, but one was of exceptional size [the Basilic], throwing a ball twelve hundred pounds in weight, and when it fired the explosion made all the walls of the city shake, and all the ground inside, and even the ships in the harbor felt the vibrations of it. Because of the great noise, many women fainted with the shock which the firing of it gave them. No greater cannon than this one was ever seen in the whole pagan world, and it was this that broke down such a great deal of the city walls”

Prophetic Moon

On the 21st and 22nd more Turkish tunnels were found and destroyed, at night there came an ominous sign for the Christians.

On this same day, the twenty-second of May, at the first hour of the night, there appeared a wonderful sign in the sky, which was to tell Constantine the worthy Emperor of Constantinople that his proud empire was about to come to an end, as it did. The sign was of this form and condition: at the first hour after sunset the moon rose, being at this time at the full, so that it should have risen in the form of a complete circle; but it rose as if it were no more than a three-day moon, with only a little of it showing, although the air was clear and unclouded, pure as crystal. 

The moon stayed in this form for about four hours, and gradually increased to a full circle, so that at the sixth hour of the night it was fully formed. When we Christians and the pagans had seen this marvelous sign, the Emperor of Constantinople was greatly afraid of it, and so were all his nobles, because the Greeks had a prophecy which said that Constantinople would never fall until the full moon should give a sign, and this was the reason for the fear which the Greeks felt. But the Turks made great festivity in their camp for joy at the sign, because they believed that now victory was in their hands, as in truth it was.

The Fall

On the 23rd they found yet another Turkish tunnel and set it ablaze, the two men who were in charge survived this inferno but were captured.

“These two men were tortured by the Greeks and made known the whereabouts of the other tunnels, and after they had given this information, their heads were cut off, and their bodies thrown over the walls on the side of the city where the Turkish camp was; and when they saw these Turks thrown down from the walls, they were very angry, and felt great hatred for the Greeks and for us Italians.”

On the 26th and 27th of May Mehmet had large fires set in the camps to encourage his men for the great assault on the city that was soon to come. On the 28th Mehmet had his men in full alert and ready at their posts for tomorrow they would see the fall of Constantine, the Turks brought about 2,000 long ladders to the walls and on this night much greater fires were lit.

Now we’ve come to the final day of the siege of Constantinople, the day that would have great impact on history. On the 29th of May Mehmet divided his army up into 3 groups (of 50,000 men each) and prepared to enact his plan. 

The first was made up of Christians held against their will who were used to place the ladders against the walls but the ladders were thrown back leading to the death of some, others dying from the stones that were thrown down to them. Those who survived attempted to escape but were killed by the Turks, it is believed by some that they were sent in first because the Sultan preferred the Christians to die before the Turks, he wished to tire out the city and because after catching sight what happens to those who flee would inspire those who came next.

The second group was made up of peasants who after seeing what happened to the Christians, fought bravely but at attempting to put ladders up against the walls they too failed. Cannons and crossbows fired off at the Turkish camp “killed a tremendous number”. 

The third group was made up of Janissaries and upon the second’s failed attempt they followed, fighting “not like Turks but like lions” met the weak and tired defenders of the city. The great Basilic cannon hit the partially repaired wall, knocking it down into the ground and setting loose a cloud of dust and smoke from which about 300 Turks poured through but the Greeks and Venetians fought them off, killing most. Another shot from the great Basilic cannon was fired and under the cover of smoke another rush of Turks made it through the walls and overwhelmed the Christian forces (though many Turks fell to stones dropped from the walls above).

Upon seeing this, the Genoese Captain of the forces who was named Zuan Zustignan fled the city on ship while crying out, “The Turks have got into the city!”, although this was false, being that the city had not yet reached, many hearing this fled to the ships as well. After an aggressive struggle, the Turks entered the city and killed men, women and children.

All the while the Turkish Navy under Zagan Pasha (2nd vizier) made attempts to take the harbor but were driven back until they saw that the city was taken and so they disembarked and sought to plunder the city along with the rest of Mehmed’s force. Churches and monasteries were plundered and the inhabitants were captured for the purpose of being sold into slavery, some are said to have killed themselves rather than becoming victims.

“The blood flowed in the city like rainwater in the gutters after a sudden storm, and the corpses of Turks and Christians were thrown into the Dardanelles, where they floated out to sea like melons along a canal. No one could hear any news of the Emperor, what he had been doing, or whether he was dead or alive, but some said that his body had been seen among the corpses, and it was said that he had hanged himself at the moment when the Turks broke in at the San Romano gate.“

After the City Was Captured 

Entry of Mehmed II into Constantinople by Jean-Joseph Benjamin-Constant (1845–1902)

“On the third day after the fall of our city, the Sultan celebrated his victory with a great, joyful triumph. He issued a proclamation: the citizens of all ages who had managed to escape detection were to leave their hiding places throughout the city and come out into the open, as they were remain free and no question would be asked.

Although most would assume that they renamed the city Istanbul, that didn’t officially happen until 1930.  Istanbul was the common name for the city used in conversation by the Turks but in official circumstances (text, coins, etc.) the name Constantinople remained (Kostantiniyye was still in use up to the 19th century) and in 1930 the Turkish Postal Services Law prevented people from using any other name than Istanbul.


Historical Impact and the Renaissance  

The fall of Constantinople, the Black Plague, the further expansion of the Ottoman empire along with the Islamic Moors of Spain had major impacts in the history of Europe, there was an influx of ideas which are believed by most to have been a major driving force that led to the end of the Late Middle Ages and the beginning of the Italian Renaissance. With Constantinople’s capture and further Turkish expansion into Europe, Western Asia and Africa, the Ottomans had great control over the trade routes which linked East and West. 

Ottoman Empire at it’s greatest extent 

This control of trade routes was one of the leading reasons for Europe’s increased interest in seeking an alternative route; Christopher Columbus to the West and Dom Vasco da Gama (who linked Europe and Asia by sailing from Lisbon, Portugal around Western Africa all the way to India and back). Upon the city’s capture many scholars and artists fled from Greece to Italy, bringing with them ancient Greek and Roman texts as well as refreshing ideas and perspectives on humanism, philosophy and history.

First Voyage of Dom Vasco da Gama

The Black Plague (peaked in Europe 1346-1353) that reduced the population of Europe by one third also had its benefits; a smaller work force led to a greater demand for workers which would be paid higher incomes than before the outbreak, the price of food was much cheaper and the purchase and inheritance of land was increased. Although the majority of Italians were poor there were now easier routes to becoming a merchant, banker, craftsmen or artisan. The Ottomans and the Moors valued knowledge and while over 90% of those in Europe were illiterate these two nations constructed many schools, universities, libraries, and Moorish Spain especially is said to have inspired the creation of the famed Universities of Oxford and Paris (under Abelard).

The improved hygiene of the Islamic world was introduced to Europe in this example by the Moors with; innovative surgical instruments, hospitals with running water, public baths, perfumes, scented oils and the idea of bathing twice a day (Queen Isabella I of Castille is said to have boasted that she only bathed twice in her lifetime, her birth and when she married).

anonymous asked:

I'm a jew I can't wait to join my people and wipe you filthy Muslims out. You are pathetic, every religion hates you

Dear Anon,

What’s the reason you want to kill us? Shall I tell you something? Without muslims you wouldn’t even exist at the moment. Yes, you’ve read it well. You wouldn’t. We saved your ancestors. We protected them. We gave them their rights they deserve as a human being. I’m not talking about WW II only, but also many years earlier than that. Ever read about Jerusalem and how peacefully Jews have lived with muslims. We never forced your ancestors to become Muslim, like Christians did. You know if Christians had the power in Jerusalem then your ancestors would have been forced to convert, and they would have been even killed. (The story about Jesus). Judaism wouldn’t exist anymore if that happened, but be glad Muslims had the power, and they tolerated every single religion, and they respected them. We can see that still back. (Morocco and Albania is a great example). To make it more clear for you that I don’t talk nonsense. Let me show you a few great muslim leaders who saved Jews. 

The Jewish tribe protected by decree of the Prophet 
The Banu Harith (Hebrew: Banim Chorath) are an Arabian Jewish tribe that were protected by their Muslim rulers for over 1,300 years. Ever since the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) explicitly stated they should be protected in the Constitution of Medina. In the 1930s most of the tribe lived in the Yemeni city of Najran, Saudi Arabia conquered the city in 1934 and the community began experiencing increased persecution which culminated in the local governor Amir Turki ben Mahdi giving the 600 Jews living there a single day to either flee the city or convert to Islam.
The Jews chose to leave and Saudi soldiers escorted them to the Yemeni border. They settled in the cities of Saada and Aden. The Saudi King Abdulaziz demanded their return, but Yemen’s Shia Muslim King, Ahmad bin Yahya, refused his demand as he considered them to be Yemeni and not Saudi refugees.
It is impossible to say what the fate of this Jewish tribe would have been, but it is likely to have ended tragically as Judaism is forbidden within the borders of Saudi Arabia. Today the remnants of Banu Harith live in Yemen and Israel.
While these actions were truly commendable, there are questions as to the general treatment of Jews under Adhmad bin Yahya’s rule. While stories of persecution do exist, he was also one of the few Muslim leaders that permitted his Jewish subjects to leave for Israel – which prompted nearly 50,000 Yemenite Jews to flee to the fledgling state.

The Moroccan King who defied the Nazis
During the holocaust the pro-Nazi Vichy Government of France controlled Morocco. In 1941 they attempted to enact laws that would discriminate against Moroccan Jews, setting quotas on the number of Jewish doctors and lawyers, ejecting students from French schools and forcing many Jews living in the European quarters to move to “Jewish areas”. All of this would have almost certainly ended in the transportation of Moroccan Jewry to Europe’s gas chambers.
Shocked at these laws the King of Morocco, Mohammed V, told Jewish leaders that in his opinion Vichy laws singling out the Jews were inconsistent with Moroccan law. He believed that Jews should be treated equally with Muslims. He emphasized that the property and lives of the Moroccan Jews remained under his protection. “There are no Jews in Morocco. There are only subjects,” the King was reported to have said. In a blatant show of defiance the King insisted on inviting all the rabbis of Morocco to the 1941 throne celebrations. Due to his strong stance, Vichy administrators were unable to implement their discriminatory laws and the Jewish community was saved.
But the story did not end there, in response to anti-Jewish rhetoric in the wake of the creation of the State of Israel the King warned Muslims not to hurt Moroccan Jews, reminding them that Jews had always been protected in Morocco.

The Sultan that sent a navy to save Jews
In 1492 Spain expelled its Jewish and Muslim populations as part of the Spanish Inquisition. The ruler of the Ottoman Empire, Bayezid II, responded to Spain’s ethnic cleansing by sending the Ottoman Navy to rescue the victims of the inquisition and resettle them in Ottoman lands.
The Sultan then sent out proclamations throughout the empire stating that the Jewish refugees were to be welcomed, granting them permission to settle anywhere in the Empire as full and equal citizens. He ridiculed the conduct of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile, who had expelled the Jews by saying “You venture to call Ferdinand a wise ruler, he who has impoverished his own country and enriched mine!” – in recognition of the incredible contributions the Jews would make to his empire.
Bayezid then sent a decree to all the governors of his European provinces, ordering them not only to refrain from repelling the Spanish refugees, but to give them a friendly and welcome reception, threatening those who treated the Jews harshly with death.

The Muslim General and his Jewish army
During the 7th and 8th centuries Iberia (Spain and Portugal) was a divided kingdom ruled by the Catholic Visigoths, the region was home to a Jewish minority who suffered intolerable persecution under their Christian rulers. In the spring of 711, a Muslim army invaded Iberia. They were led by Tariq ibn Ziyad, serving the Arab governor Musa ibn Nusayr. The Muslim army engaged Roderick (Luthariq) the Visigoth King in battle and defeated him. They then marched northward to the Visigoth capital of Toledo. Both Latin and Arabic chroniclers record that the Jews of the city “opened the gates of Toledo” to Tariq, enabling him to conquer the city.
Rather than simply offering the Jews protection for their act of bravery, Tariq elevated the Jews to protectors of the empire and positioned Jewish garrisons to watch over the cities of Toledo, Granada and Seville. Possibly the first instance in history where a Jewish army protected their Muslim cousins.

The Prophet Muhammad 
Many mistakenly believe that Muhammad (ﷺ) was an enemy of the Jews. Much of the confusion stems from the Battle of the Trench, which Muslim tradition records was a two week battle that raged between Arab and Jewish tribes against the Muslims of Medinah. After the Jewish tribes were defeated, between 600-900 Jewish men were sentenced to death.
However, this was a battle that involved betrayal and treachery. To understand the Prophet’s (ﷺ) view of the Jews we must look at the relationship in its entirety.
Muhammad (ﷺ) was married to Safiyya – a Jewish lady. On one occasion she came to Muhammad (ﷺ) in tears after being taunted for being Jewish by Arab women. After consoling her he said, “If they discriminate you again, tell them that your husband is Muhammad, your father was the prophet Aaron and your uncle was prophet Musa. So what is there in that to be scornful towards you”.
It is well documented that Muhammad (ﷺ) had Jewish wives, friends and many subjects. And it is the treatment of these Jewish subjects in lands under his control that laid the blueprint of tolerance and protection that Muslim rulers have shown Jews throughout the centuries.
In one of history’s major examples of state endorsed religious tolerance, Muhammad (ﷺ) drafted the Constitution of Medina declaring Jews a protected minority, free to practise their religion. It is this Constitution that offered protection of Banu Harith, the Yemeni tribe in our first story. And it is this constitution that inspired every Muslim ruler we have mentioned to protect their Jewish citizens.
(16) To the Jew who follows us belong help and equality. He shall not be wronged nor shall his enemies be aided.
(24) The Jews shall contribute to the cost of war so long as they are fighting alongside the believers.
(25) The Jews of the B. ‘Auf are one community with the believers (the Jews have their religion and the Muslims have theirs), their freedmen and their persons except those who behave unjustly and sinfully, for they hurt but themselves and their families.
(26-35) The same applies to the Jews of the B. al-Najjar, B. al-Harith, B. Sai ida, B. Jusham, B. al-Aus, B. Tha’laba, and the Jafna, a clan of the Tha‘laba and the B. al-Shutayba. Loyalty is a protection against treachery. The freedmen of Tha ‘laba are as themselves. The close friends of the Jews are as themselves.
(37) The Jews must bear their expenses and the Muslims their expenses. Each must help the other against anyone who attacks the people of this document. They must seek mutual advice and consultation, and loyalty is a protection against treachery. A man is not liable for his ally’s misdeeds. The wronged must be helped.
(38) The Jews must pay with the believers so long as war lasts.
(46) The Jews of al-Aus, their freedmen and themselves have the same standing with the people of this document in purely loyalty from the people of this document. Loyalty is a protection against treachery. He who acquires ought acquires it for himself. God approves of this document.

After reading this… do you feel guilty? Believe me you’re near us. Yes, you read this from a muslim. You’re one of the children of our father Abraham. We have the same father. We should unite and respect each other. I know there are plenty Jews who are totally against you, and they are loving us. It should be like that. Brotherhood. 

No religion hates us. A religion simply can’t hate. Its like we say Spain hates us. Ever heard of a country hating something? Let me ignore this, and let’s talk further. We tolerate every religion. We believe in Moses and Jesus they are our prophets, and they are very important, because you know what? I’m not a muslim if I don’t believe in them. We believe in the Thorah and the Bible. We  believed they were the Words of God. It’s mentioned in the Quran several times. Nobody hates us. Nobody hates muslims. The only ones who hates muslims are ignorant people who think that what the media shows represents us, not knowing it has not even a single thing to do with us. 

Don’t kill anyone:

Both the Mishna and the Quran state ‘Whoever destroys a single life is as though he had destroyed the entire world, and whoever saves a single life is as if he had saved the entire world’

Have a great day brother/sister!


In the mid-1530s, the Spanish fleet from Messina–which lead a successful expedition to Tunis under Charles V–coupled with the outbreak of the Ottoman-Venetian War, stressed the importance of naval supremacy to Suleiman, who called Hayreddin Barbarossa from Algiers to serve as admiral. In 1538, he captured several Venetian islands, including Naxos, Santorini, and Paros. In response, Pope Paul III formed the Holy League that same year, with Charles V and Ferdinand of Austria allied alongside Venice. In September, under the Italian admiral Andrea Doria, Barbarossa’s fleet was halted in the Gulf of Prevesa (pictured above: painted in 1866 by Ohannes Umed Behzad). A decisive Ottoman victory helped draw the war to an end; the treaty of 1540 left Venice without Monemvasia, Navplion, and the majority of her Aegean territories.

Paraphrased from: the Ottoman Empire (2nd Edition) by Colin Imber, page 45

The name “Barbossa” as heard in Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End might have been derived from the real Turkish pirate “Barbarossa”. Barbarossa, also known as “Redbeard” was once a pirate in the Aegean and the Mediterranean seas before he became a fleet admiral of the Ottoman Empire navy.

A Venetian Galleon. Although it seems to be captioned saying such a ship was present at the Battle of Lepanto, this would be incorrect, as only oared galleys and galleases were present. The Galleon did begin to replace the former, however, quite soon after the battle.

(Zentralbibliothek Zürich)