Sunday, September 24, 2006

Head of Islamic Organizations in Spain Denies Islam Occupied Spain For 800 Years

[....snip....] [Ali Al-Raisouni, the head of the Islamic Dawa organization and Secretary General of the UN-backed and Spanish-sponsored Alliance of Civilizations said] "Muslims neither invaded nor colonized Spain."

"But the Islamic conquest of Al-Andalus (Spain) had given momentum to human civilization and brought human beings closer as manifested in the historic collections left by the Muslims of Al-Andalus," he explained.

At his Friday's speech, [Former Spanish prime minister Jose Maria] Aznar said: "We are living in a time of war... It's them or us. The West did not attack Islam, it was they who attacked us."

"We must face up to an Islam that is ambitious, that is radical and that influences the Muslim world, a fundamentalist Islam that we must confront because we don't have any choice.

"We are constantly under attack and we must defend ourselves," he said. "I support Ferdinand and Isabella," he proclaimed.

Raisouni said Aznar's remarks came while a galaxy of Arab and Spanish intellectuals were planning from now to throw a huge ceremony in 2011 to mark the 1300th anniversary of the Islamic conquest of Al-Andalus in appreciation of Islam's contributions to Spain.

Orientalists and civilization experts have contended that the West owed much to Muslim intellectuals and scientists at earlier centuries [....snip]

The Muslim expansion continued throughout the sixth and into the seventh century. In 711 the Berber Tarik invaded and rapidly conquered Visigothic Spain. Famously by 733 the Muslims reached Poitiers in France. There a battle, more significant to westerners than Muslims, halted the Muslim advance. In truth by that stage Islam was at its limits of military expansion. Tarik gave his name to "Jabal (mount of) Tarik" or, as we say, Gibraltar. In 712 Tarik's lord, Musa ibn-Mosseyr, joined the attack. Within seven years the conquest of the peninsula was complete. It became one of the centers of Moslem civilization, and the Umayyad caliphate of Cordova reached a peak of glory in the tenth century. Spain, called "al-Andulus" by Muslims remained was at least partially under Muslim control until 1492 when Granada was conquered by Ferdinand and Isabella. [....snip] From Ibn Abd-el-Hakem, History of the Conquest of Spain, trans. by John Harris Jones (Gottingen, W. Fr. Kaestner, 1858), pp. 18-22

Tip O' the Hat to Father Stephanos, O.S.B.

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