Should Spain Apologize to Muslims?
The chutzpah is off the charts: Voice of Europe reported on Saturday that the Ishbilia mosque in Seville, Spain, is demanding that King Felipe VI apologize for the Reconquista, the Christian Reconquest of Spain.
The mosque’s president, Yihad Sarasua, addressed the King in a Facebook post: “Sir, being the King of Spain, I believe that the historical moment has arrived to carry out the recognition of the vileness, plunder, displacement and murders carried out by orders of the Catholic kings and their most direct collaborators, which culminated with the surrender of Granada and the breach of everything subscribed to the Muslim community.”
Sirasua claimed: “Never has existed such a fierce persecution and eagerness to eliminate a religious community, as was carried out by the old Spanish royalty in the times of Felipe II, an extermination that culminated in the War of the Alpujarres subsequent to the Pragmatic Sanction of 1567.”
He concluded: “As a descendant of the aforementioned kings, what a formidable opportunity you would have to demonstrate to the Muslim community your respect and your discrepancy, with the Islamic theses, apologising to our community for so many atrocities and interceding for the recognition of Spanish nationality for the descendants of Al Andalus, as was done with the Sephardic Jewish community.”
Sure, Yihad. Right after you folks apologize for the Islamic conquest of Spain that preceded the Reconquista. But of course, you will never, ever do that, because for jihadis and Islamic supremacists, every atrocity they ever commit is the Infidel's fault.
But if Yihad Sirasua were inclined to be honest, he would have plenty to apologize for. The History of Jihad From Muhammad to ISIS, the first and only comprehensive history of the 1,400-year jihad phenomenon worldwide in the English language, shows that Muslim Spain was anything but pluralist -- it was miserable to live as a Christian there. Christians could never be sure that they would not be harassed. One contemporary account tells of priests being “pelted with rocks and dung” by Muslims while on the way to a cemetery. The dhimmis suffered severe economic hardship: Paul Alvarus, a ninth-century Christian in Córdoba, complained about the “unbearable tax” that Muslims levied on Christians.
Nor could Christians say anything about their lot, because it was proscribed by Islamic law, and criticizing Islam, Muhammad, or the Qur’an in any manner was a death-penalty offense.
In 850, Perfectus, a Christian priest, engaged a group of Muslims in conversation about Islam; his opinion of the conquerors’ religion was not positive. For this, Perfectus was arrested and put to death. Not long thereafter, Joannes, a Christian merchant, was said to have invoked Muhammad’s name in his sales pitch. He was lashed and given a lengthy prison sentence. Christian and Muslim sources contain numerous records of similar incidents in the early part of the tenth century. Around 910, in one of many such episodes, a woman was executed for proclaiming that “Jesus was God and that Muhammad had lied to his followers.”
Far from being a paradise of tolerance, Umayyad Spain became a center of the Islamic slave trade. Muslim buyers could purchase sex-slave girls as young as eleven years old, as well as slave boys for sex as well, or slave boys raised to become slave soldiers. Also for sale were eunuchs, useful for guarding harems. Blonde slaves seized in jihad raids on Christian nations north of al-Andalus were especially prized and fetched high prices. Slave traders would use makeup to whiten the faces and dye to lighten the hair of darker slaves, so that they could get more money for them.
A 12th-century witness of the sale of sex slaves described the market:
The merchant tells the slave girls to act in a coquettish manner with the old men and with the timid men among the potential buyers to make them crazy with desire. The merchant paints red the tips of the fingers of a white slave; he paints in gold those of a black slave; and he dresses them all in transparent clothes, the white female slaves in pink and the black ones in yellow and red.
If the girls did not cooperate, of course, they would be beaten or killed.
The primary market for slaves among Muslims was for non-Muslims, as enslaving fellow Muslims was considered a violation of the Qur’an’s requirement to be “merciful to one another” (48:29); hence Muslim slave traders had to look to non-Muslim communities for merchandise.
Yihad Sirasua will never tell you any of that, because if the public knew those facts and others, they wouldn’t favor the policies he wants Spain, and the West in general, to adopt. The truth that he doesn’t want you to know is in The History of Jihad From Muhammad to ISIS -- truths he and his allies have been working actively suppress. As his letter to the King shows, history has today become a weapon to influence current public policy.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His new book is The History of Jihad From Muhammad to ISIS. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.