When Hagia Sophia Defied Islam (and Saved Western Civilization)

Turkey has repeatedly made clear — most recently by transforming Constantinople's chief cathedral, the Hagia Sophia, back into a mosque — that few things in Islamic history are more glorious than the jihadi conquest of Constantinople, or "New Rome," in 1453.  That's because, with Islam's birth some eight hundred years earlier, Muslim empires had still not managed to conquer Constantinople — in direct compliance with their prophet's wish — even as more than two thirds of Christendom's original territory had already fallen. Today in history, however, on August 15, 718, not only did Constantinople score its greatest victory against Islam, but, as shall be seen, it saved Western civilization.  The story is worth recounting.  After several failed sieges, in the year 715, the Umayyad caliphate had concluded that enough was enough: it would vomit forth all it had in one final, all-out effort to conquer the...(Read Full Article)
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