Analysis of the Pact of Umar

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According to many Muslim historians,[1] the Pact of Umar (العهدة العمرية‎, Al-'Uhda Al-'Umariyya) (637 AD) is an agreement between a subdued Christian population and the Muslim invaders led by Umar Ibn Al-Khattab, the second Rightly-guided Caliph.

Introduction[edit]

Much has been said of the Pact of Umar,[2] and much of it distinctly positive. Its non-Muslim admirers gleefully compare its contents to the treatment of religious minorities in Medieval Europe, while ignoring its influence and conformity with Islamic scriptural sources which still govern the treatment of minorities in the East today.

This article analyzes the rights and limitations placed on the Christians, to see just how free non-Muslims really were under the Rightly-guided Caliph.

Analysis of the Pact[edit]

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. This is a document to the servant of Allah `Umar, the Leader of the faithful, from the Christians of such and such city. When you (Muslims) came to us we requested safety for ourselves, children, property and followers of our religion. We made a condition on ourselves that:

At first reading, it may seem like this pact was drafted by the Christians themselves. However, the terms were dictated to them by Umar. This is standard procedure for any agreement we may sign today, whether it be a receipt for a grocery delivery or the deeds to our homes. This, along with the true purpose of some of its demands, are confirmed by Ibn Kathir in his widely accepted tafsir.

"Allah said, (until they pay the Jizyah), if they do not choose to embrace Islam, (with willing submission), in defeat and subservience, (and feel themselves subdued.), disgraced, humiliated and belittled. Therefore, Muslims are not allowed to honor the people of Dhimmah or elevate them above Muslims, for they are miserable, disgraced and humiliated. Muslim recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said, (Do not initiate the Salam to the Jews and Christians, and if you meet any of them in a road, force them to its narrowest alley.) This is why the Leader of the faithful `Umar bin Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, demanded his well-known conditions be met by the Christians, these conditions that ensured their continued humiliation, degradation and disgrace."[3]

So we find that, not only many of the demands in the pact, but also the jizyah (poll tax levied against non-Muslims) which the Christians had to pay, were primarily meant to humiliate them.

we will neither erect in our areas a monastery, church, or a sanctuary for a monk,

We come to our first set of prohibitions, no new monasteries, no new churches, and no new sanctuaries. This prohibition still exists in various forms in many Islamic countries.[4][5][6] One can only imagine the uproar and condemnation if anything similar were to take place in the west.[7] Some may think the Syrians would have been pleased with Umar allowing them to keep their existing places of worship, and that takes us along to the next prohibition.

nor restore any place of worship that needs restoration

So, no new churches for the Syrians, and the ones that did exist, they had to watch as they slowly decayed and fell into ruin. As a community, there is very little that can be more humiliating for a Christian, Jew, Hindu, or Buddhist than having to watch a holy site wither away. No doubt, Umar envisioned the communities themselves (like the Jews of the Middle-East today)[8] would also eventually wither away and die.

nor use any of them for the purpose of enmity against Muslims.

This prohibition seems fair enough, although the Muslim invaders do seem to have been projecting their own self-image on others. Mosques are notorious for being breeding grounds for anti-Semitic, anti-Christian, anti-women, and anti-gay sentiment.[9][10][11] Often when Muslims riot and attack non-Muslims, it is following their Friday prayers,[12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20] which should not come as a surprise, considering during Muhammad's time, the call to prayer could also be the call to war.[21]

We will not prevent any Muslim from resting in our churches whether they come by day or night, and we will open the doors [of our houses of worship] for the wayfarer and passerby.

Forcing yourself into others properties, especially into religious sanctuaries is extremely rude. But as long as they do not do as the Palestinian Muslims do (i.e. urinate on Torah Scrolls[22] or use Bibles as toilet paper),[23][24] it would be tolerable.

Those Muslims who come as guests, will enjoy boarding and food for three days.

The abuse of non-Muslim property goes from tolerable to humiliating. Not only were the Muslims allowed to come and go as they pleased, the Christians were also forced to wait on them hand and foot.

We will not allow a spy against Muslims into our churches and homes or hide deceit [or betrayal] against Muslims.

Again, this condition would be expected from an invading army.

We will not teach our children the Qur'an,

Non-Muslims, like dogs, pigs, and faeces, are considered najis (نجس‎ impure),[25][26][27] so this stipulation is hardly surprising. Also recorded in the sahih hadiths, is the command to not let the Qur'an fall into enemy hands, as they may "quarrel with you over it."[28] Apparently Muslims were afraid of non-Muslims scrutinizing their holy book.

[We will not] publicize practices of Shirk,

Shirk (شرك‎) refers to taking other gods besides Allah (i.e. Polytheism), and is considered the most heinous crime against the Islamic god. Due to Muhammad's abysmal understanding of the Trinity doctrine,[29] Muslims consider all Trinitarian Christians to be polytheists. This condition in the pact prevents Christians from proclaiming their religion publicly.

[We will not] invite anyone to Shirk or prevent any of our fellows from embracing Islam, if they choose to do so.

As per most Islamic nations of today, it is fine for Muslims to proselytise and gain converts, but for a non-Muslim to do the same it is strictly forbidden. According to the above, even discussing this important matter with the prospective convert would mean violating the agreement. These restrictions limited the number of Muslim apostates and (coupled with the jizyah)[30] would ensure a steady decline and Islamization of the native non-Muslim population.

We will respect Muslims,

This perfectly exemplifies the common Islamic attitude towards others. They demand that others give them, their culture, and their prophet respect, yet fail to provide us with a valid reason as to why we should. In most other modern-day cultures it is accepted that respect must be earned, and you do not achieve this by invading foreign lands and officially labeling its native populations as second-class citizens.

[We will] move from the places we sit in if they choose to sit in them.

This brings to mind; a bus, the Jim Crow laws and a certain American civil rights activist named Rosa Parks (February 4, 1913 – October 24, 2005). The difference lay in the fact you do not hear Americans defending such shameful histories by pointing to dhimmitude today in Muslim lands, or you don't hear them defending the slave-trade by pointing out that the number of innocent Africans who were taken (or died in the process of being taken) as slaves over the last fourteen centuries of Islamic slavery is estimated to be higher than 140 million[31] (dwarfing the 11 million Africans who were transported across the Atlantic). Such moral relativism seem to only be accepted when applied to Islam by those defending Islam.

We will not imitate their clothing, caps, turbans, sandals, hairstyles, speech, nicknames and title names,

The overt hatred and disdain for everything non-Muslim is truly outstanding. These prohibitions reflect Muhammad's wishes when he said "Jews and Christians do not dye their hair so you should do the opposite of what they do,"[32] and "act differently from them".[33]

or ride on saddles,

Muslims look very fondly on horses and such. This may be due to Muhammad claiming he rode the Buraq, a mythical horse-like flying creature, on his "Night Journey." This prohibition is meant to show Islamic superiority.

[We will not] hang swords on the shoulders, collect weapons of any kind or carry these weapons.

Apologists often claim jizyah was merely a tax for exemption from military service. However, this is untrue. The Qur'an itself readily admits that the jizyah is a form of humiliation,[34] meant to display the superior status of Muslims and the subdued state of non-Muslims. And as jihad is a religious duty among Muslims, it would make little sense for a non-Muslim dhimmi to participate. There is also another reason for the exemption, and this prohibition against owning or carrying weapons demonstrates it perfectly- they did not want the conquered natives to be armed.

We will not encrypt our stamps in Arabic,

As with Muhammad and the Ka'aba, their veneration of the Arabic language borders on idolatry. This becomes all the more humorous when you consider Islam's and the Arabic language's shared pagan heritage.

or sell liquor.

This restriction on the sale of alcohol, for many, would have seriously hampered the Christian practice of eating bread and drinking wine (the Eucharist) on Sundays.

We will have the front of our hair cut, wear our customary clothes wherever we are,

These degrading requirements were so the Christians could be easily identified on sight.

[We will] wear belts around our waist,

The belt being referred to is the zunār, a wide belt made of cloth. The similarities between this and the 1939 Nazi requirement for all Jews to wear armbands or yellow stars are uncanny. In fact, the yellow star used by the Nazis as a badge of shame against the Jews was first introduced by a caliph in Baghdad in the 9th century, and spread to the West in medieval times.[35] Unsurprisingly, this is one of Islam's so-called "Golden Age" inventions which you will not find proudly displayed on da‘wah websites.

refrain from erecting crosses on the outside of our churches

One can only imagine how many crosses have been torn down due to this prohibition. Muhammad himself used to destroy anything in his home which bore the Christian symbol of the Cross.[36]

and [refrain from] demonstrating them and our books in public in Muslim fairways and markets.

Like in Saudi-Arabia today, carrying a Bible, or wearing a cross/crucifix was strictly forbidden.

We will not sound the bells in our churches, except discretely,

How ironic this is, in a world were a Buddhist cannot visit the most holiest of Buddhist sites without having the spiritual experience raped by the Islamic call to prayer (أَذَان adhān), which continues for a half-hour.[37]

or raise our voices while reciting our holy books inside our churches in the presence of Muslims,

One must wonder why a Muslim would be present inside a church during services. No doubt, they had come for their free meals and board.

nor raise our voices [with prayer] at our funerals,

Christians even had to mourn in silence, lest they offend the Muslim invaders.

or light torches in funeral processions in the fairways of Muslims, or their markets.

This, and many of the other restrictions, seem to serve only two purposes. The first, to humiliate, and the second, to make the Christian community an invisible one. Like the non-Muslims today in the east, who live as ghosts, rarely discussed by the 'progressive' west, unless on Islam-critical sites like ours.

We will not bury our dead next to Muslim dead,

According to most Islamic scholars, it is a compulsory (fard) requirement for Muslims to be buried in separate cemeteries from non-Muslims.[38] In Switzerland, Muslims (approximately 4.5 percent of the population) say they want to be buried “with dignity”[39] and are therefore calling for Islamic cemeteries in every canton, and who can blame them when they equate non-Muslims with faeces?

or buy servants who were captured by Muslims.

This was most likely to avoid Christians buying other Christians.

We will be guides for Muslims and refrain from breaching their privacy in their homes.

So Muslims can impose on Christians all they please, but for a Christian to enter a Muslim home could mean violating the pact. Even today, their demands only apply to others and not themselves. They want others to accept their religion as they would accept any other religion, yet fail to do likewise in any country where they have become a majority.

We will not beat any Muslim.

Assaulting someone would already be an offense, so this prohibition only makes sense when applied to beating someone in self-defense. Yes, non-Muslims were not allowed to defend themselves or their families against unwarranted attacks. This and the previous prohibition against owning or carrying weapons made sure the Christians were left completely defenseless.

These are the conditions that we set against ourselves and followers of our religion in return for safety and protection. If we break any of these promises that we set for your benefit against ourselves, then our Dhimmah (promise of protection) is broken and you are allowed to do with us what you are allowed of people of defiance and rebellion.

We come to the closing of the pact which leaves, not only the solitary law breaker, but the entire Christian community, with a stern warning. The Qur'an tells us for people who rebel, there is a painful doom.[40] Today, this has provided on many occasions the pretext for Muslims to viciously attack non-Muslim communities for the smallest of perceived slights.[41]

Conclusion[edit]

Many point to this pact as proof of Islam's inherent tolerance towards other beliefs, by applying the logical fallacy of ad-hominem tu-quoque against past followers of other religions and their intolerances during the medieval period. One must consider that no two religions are the same, some are inherently more adaptable to change than others, so this fallacious comparison could not be further from the truth.

According to Islamic theology, Umar is one of four 'Rightly-guided Caliphs. Therefore, he is considered by them to be a model Muslim leader.[42] His actions and this pact perfectly reflect the teachings of the Qur'an and the Hadith[43] (together forming Islamic sacred law, or Sharia). Yes, this may be considered to be progressive for something allegedly written in the 7th century, but that was almost 1500 years ago, and it is anything but tolerant by modern western standards.

While today's Secular Europeans and Christians can and have denounced (and even apologized)[44][45] for past atrocities committed by others in the name of their countries and religion, the same cannot be said for the followers of Islam. Most still deny that the Islamic slave trade ever existed, or indeed still exists[46] in the east. Most refuse to accept the fact that the crusades were called as a belated response to hundreds of years of Islamic aggression, to the point where two-thirds of the Christian world was conquered and Islamized.

Religious persecution has been institutionalized in Islam through the intolerant actions of its founder and his subsequent successors. To this day, Muslims hold up this document with pride,[47] and to this day, they persecute and oppress non-Muslim communities in almost every Islamic and Muslim majority nation. If this is the pinnacle of Islamic tolerance, some may wish that they keep it to themselves.

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See Also[edit]

External Links[edit]

References and Footnotes[edit]

  1. These include: al-Khallal (d. 923 AD), Ibn Hazm (d. 1063 AD), al-Tartushi (d. 1126 AD), Ibn Qudama (d. 1123 AD), Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 1138 AD), Ibn ‘Asakir (d. 1176 AD), Ibn al-Qayyim (d. 1350 AD), Ibn Kathir, al-Hindi and ‘Ali ‘Ajin
  2. Paul Halsall - The Status of Non-Muslims Under Muslim Rule- Medieval Sourcebook, January, 1996
  3. Tafsir ibn Kathir - Paying Jizyah is a Sign of Kufr and Disgrace
  4. There are over a million Christians in Saudi-Arabia, yet it is against the law to build churches, synagogues, and temples. Shockingly, at present there exists not a single non-Muslim place of worship in the whole of Saudi-Arabia.
  5. In Indonesia, a country which is often referred to as a 'moderate' Islamic nation, it can take up to ten years to get permission to build a church, and on many occasions, only to have it retracted. - West Java, the construction of the Catholic church of Saint Mary blocked - AsiaNews, October 20, 2009
  6. Only two Months after President Obama's address to the Muslim world, a Cairo university professor, rather ironically, issued a fatwa stating 'building churches is a sin,' and equated them to Nightclubs, Casinos, and Pigstyes. - Mary Abdelmassih - Building a Church is a 'Sin' Against God, Says Egyptian Muslim Council - AINA, August 31, 2009
  7. In regards to the prohibition against non-Muslim places of worship in Saudi-Arabia, some, including the Saudi Ambassador to the US, Prince Turki Al-Faisal, compare it to that of Vatican City. Lets examine this fallacious statement. Vatican City (Stato della Città del Vaticano) comprises of 0.17 square kilometres of land within the city of Rome and is a minuscule area with a population of approximately 800. On the other hand, Saudi-Arabia, the largest Arab nation of the Middle East, is a country comprising of 2,240,000 square kilometres of land and an estimated population of 28 million. A fairer comparison would be that of Vatican city to the area surrounding the Ka'aba in Mecca, or Rome to the entire city of Mecca, or Italy to Saudi Arabia. You do not have to be a Catholic to visit Vatican City. In fact, the largest mosque in Europe is outside the Vatican's gates well within the Bishop of Rome's diocese, and there are no prohibitions inside concerning the display of non-Christian religious symbols, the carrying of Qur'ans etc., while non-Muslims are not even permitted to enter Mecca, in fact it is a punishable crime. And while no non-Muslim places of worship exist in the country of Saudi-Arabia, there are over 258 registered mosques in Italy which cater to a Muslim population of 1.2 million.
  8. "...Mass murders of Jews and deaths due to political instability did however occur in North Africa throughout the centuries and especially in Morocco, Libya and Algeria where eventually Jews were forced to live in ghettos. Decrees ordering the destruction of synagogues were enacted in the Middle Ages in Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Jews were also forced to convert to Islam or face death in Yemen, Morocco and Baghdad at certain times. ...In 1945, there were between 758,000 and 866,000 Jews (see table below) living in communities throughout the Arab world. Today, there are fewer than 7,000. In some Arab states, such as Libya (which was once around 3% Jewish), the Jewish community no longer exists; in other Arab countries, only a few hundred Jews remain..." - Jewish exodus from Arab and Muslim lands - Wikipedia, June 18, 2010
  9. Books calling for the beheading of lapsed Muslims, ordering women to remain Indoors and forbidding interfaith marriages found in 25% of UK mosques - Security Editor, Sean O’Neill - Lessons in hate found at leading mosques - The Times, October 30, 2007
  10. Moderate UK Mosque Preaches Hate, Urges Faithful To "Kill Gays"
  11. Barry Thorne and Claire Cavanagh - Did imam's sermon incite Van Gogh murder? radionetherlands.nl, October 31, 2006
  12. "...Coptic contacts told CBN News, the Muslim mob ["of nearly 4,000" (archived), http://www.aina.org/news/20110304222016.htm. ] that attacked the Christians did so at the urging of Mullah Ahmed Abu El-Dabah. They said during noon prayers at his mosque last Friday, March 4, the imam told attendees the “kaffirs” (infidels) had caused a lover’s dispute that led to the death of two Muslims the day before. He allegedly incited Muslims to rid the town of all Christians....""Update: Egypt Church Attack" (archived), http://blogs.cbn.com/globallane/archive/2011/03/07/update-egypt-church-attack.aspx.  - CBN News, March 7, 2011
  13. Violent race riot flared after mosque chief urged Muslims to confront right-wing 'English Defence League' protesters - The Daily Mail, September 7, 2009
  14. "...November 30, 2007 in Khartoum Sudan. Ten thousand Muslims carrying swords, knives, and sticks protest, after Friday prayers, calling for the execution of a British teacher who was convicted of insulting Islam. She had allowed her students to name a teddy bear Muhammad...." - The Muhammad Teddy Bear Blasphemy Case
  15. "...Sheikh Tobah, Imam of the village of Shimi 170 KM south of Giza, called during Muslim Friday prayers for Jihad against Christians living there. As a result the Christian Copts living in the village were assaulted over two consecutive days. Eleven Copts were hospitalized and many Coptic youths were arrested. The assaults begain a couple of hours after the Sheikhs incitement...." - Muslim Cleric Calls for Jihad, Coptic Christians Attacked in Egypt - AINA, August 14, 2010
  16. "...[In response to a planned international LGBT conference in Surabaya] A 150-strong mob attacked the lobby of the hotel after Friday morning prayers and refused to leave until the police and hotel management would guarantee that the event was cancelled. In the evening, the mob conducted a floor-by-floor sweep of the hotel, going to the rooms of the 150 conference participants from 14 countries to make sure that they had left. An organizer told Gay City News how he was repeatedly punched by one of the agitators in the hotel lobby for refusing to turn over ILGA's list of conference participants...." - Glad to be gay in Indonesia - Megawati Wijaya, Asia Times, September 23, 2010
  17. "...Dozens of Islamists demonstrated outside the synagogue last Friday and shouted, “Jews wait, the army of Mohammed is coming back,” and “We'll redo the battle of Khaybar” - a reference to the slaughter of Jews in what is now Saudi Arabia at the hands of Mohammed's army...Concern for a repeat of last Friday's threats is particularly high Friday as Muslim leaders give their weekly sermons, an event extremist preachers may take advantage of to incite against Jews....", Maayana Miskin, "Anti-Jewish Demo Raises Fears for Tunisian Jews", IsraelNationalNews, February 18, 2011 (archived), http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/142405 
  18. "...Television station Metro TV reported that a mob coming from a post-Idul Fitri prayer at the city’s Grand Mosque was responsible for the damage. Thousands of people descended on the Comro area of the city, where they tied ropes to the statue of puppet character Gatot Kaca before trying to pull it off of its foundation. The statue finally collapsed after the rope was tied to a moving van. The crowd then targeted the statue of Semar, another puppet character situated in the Bunder area. The mob threw rocks and pulled it to the ground before hitting it with sticks and metal rods then setting it on fire. The statue of puppet character Bima in the Ciwareng area was also targeted, as was the “Welcome” statue on Jalan Gandanegara, where the Purwakarta District office is located. Both statues were also destroyed and set on fire. The mob then moved to statues depicting the twin brothers Nakula and Sadewa. Hundreds of police and army officers were already there guarding the final two statues. The mob dispersed when it started raining...", Yuli Krisna, "Mob Destroys Four Wayang Statues", Jakarta Globe, September 19, 2011 (archived), http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/mob-destroys-four-wayang-statues/466195 
  19. "After Friday prayers today, a mob of several thousand Muslims from the village of Elmarinab in Edfu, Aswan province, demolished and torched St. George's church, which was being renovated. The mob demolished the dome, walls and columns, then went to the church depot where the lumber to be used for construction was stored and torched it. The fire lasted 2 hours but the attack continued until 7 PM ... Muslims also torched a large depot of electrical goods owned by a Copt, a supermarket and four Coptic homes. Muslims prevented the fire brigade from entering the village. Security forces, which were present, "stood there watching," said Mr.Michael Ramzy, a social worker at the church.", "Muslim Mob Torches Coptic Church in Egypt", AINA, October 1, 2011 (archived), http://www.aina.org/news/20110930204413.htm 
  20. "Afghans protesting the burning of a Koran in Florida last week stormed a United Nations compound in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif and killed four Nepalese security guards and three other workers from Norway, Romania and Sweden, the UN said. The crowd emerged from the city’s main mosque after Friday prayers and marched on the UN office where they attacked the guards with knives, seized their weapons and entered the compound, Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai, a spokesman for the northern region’s police force, said by phone. The Nepalese guards were shot or stabbed to death and a man and a woman on the UN staff were beheaded, the spokesman said.", "Afghans Protesting Florida Koran Burning Kill 7 UN Workers", Bill Varner, Bloomberg, April 1, 2011 (archived), http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-04-01/afghans-protesting-florida-koran-burning-kill-8-un-workers-3-.html 
  21. “...the Messenger of Allâh immediately summoned the prayer caller and ordered him to announce fresh hostilities against Banu Quraiza,....” - Invading Banu Quraiza - AR-Raheeq Al-Makhtum by Saifur Rahman al-Mubarakpuri
  22. Muslims urinate on Torah scrolls in Hebron - Israel Today, September 07, 2008
  23. "Greedy Monsters Ruled Church", The Washington Times, May 15, 2002 (archived), http://www.internationalwallofprayer.org/A-046-Greedy-Monsters-Ruled-Church-Washington-Times.html. 
  24. Palestinians used Bible as toilet paper - WorldNetDaily, May 18, 2005
  25. (Asad) "O YOU who have attained to faith! Those who ascribe divinity to aught beside God are nothing but impure: and so they shall not approach the Inviolable House of Worship from this year onwards And should you fear poverty, then [know that] in time God will enrich you out of His bounty, if He so wills: for, verily, God is all-knowing, wise!" - Qur’an 9:28
  26. The following ten things are essentially najis [impure, unclean]: 1. Urine 2. Faeces 3. Semen 4. Dead body 5. Blood 6. Dog 7. Pig 8. Kafir [unbeliever] 9. Alcoholic liquors 10. The sweat of an animal who persistently eats najasat - Islamic Laws : Najis things » Introduction - Al-Sistani.org, Internet Archive capture dated January 19, 2010
  27. “...And, that they [the dhimmis] should not enter the pool while a Muslim is bathing at the public baths. ...It is also incumbent upon Muslims that they should not accept from them victuals with which they had come into contact, such as distillates, which cannot be purified. If something can be purified, such as clothes, if they are dry, they can be accepted, they are clean. But if they [the dhimmis] had come into contact with those clothes in moisture they should be rinsed with water after being obtained. ...It would also be better if the ruler of the Muslims would establish that all infidels could not move out of their homes on days when it rains or snows because they would make Muslims impure...” - Muhammad Baqir Majlesi (1616 – 1698 AD) - Lightning Bolts Against the Jews
  28. "It has been narrated on the authority of Ibn 'Umar that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Do not take the Qur'an on a journey with you, for I am afraid lost it should fall into the hands of the enemy. Ayyub (one of the narrators in the chain of transmitters) said: The enemy may seize it and may quarrel with you over it." - Sahih Muslim 20:4609
  29. Muhammad assumed that the Trinity consisted of the Father (God), the Mother (Virgin Mary) and the Son (Jesus).
    "And behold! Allah will say: "O Jesus the son of Mary! Didst thou say unto men, ‘Take me and my mother for two gods beside Allah?" He will say: "Glory to Thee! Never could I say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, Thou wouldst indeed have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart, though I know not what is in Thine. For Thou knowest in full all that is hidden." Qur'an 5:116
  30. Non-Muslims paid jizyah while Muslims, under the empire, paid a tax called zakat, one of the five pillars of Islam, a so-called "charity tax" which all Muslims are obligated to pay even today, but instead of paying it to the state they now pay zakat to charities of their choice, it must be noted that the majority of Islamic scholars are of the view that non-Muslims should not benefit from this alms giving. The zakat is a 2.5% tax, while the jizyah (which can vary) is about a 10% income tax (although it has been known to be as high as 50%); as explained in the Encyclopedia Britannica entry on jizyah, "many converted to Islam in order to escape the tax." This extra revenue generated by the jizyah may have also been reason enough for the Islamic authorities to avoid heavy-handed attempts at proselytization and in some cases the taxation of the non-Muslims was so profitable that the Islamic rulers went so far as to prohibit their subjects from converting to Islam.
  31. The Scourge of Slavery - Christian Action, 2004 Vol 4
  32. "Narrated Abu Huraira : The Prophet said, "Jews and Christians do not dye their hair so you should do the opposite of what they do." - Sahih Bukhari 7:72:786
  33. "Narrated Ubadah ibn as-Samit: The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) used to stand up for a funeral until the corpse was placed in the grave. A learned Jew (once) passed him and said: This is how we do. The Prophet (peace be upon him) sat down and said: Sit down and act differently from them." - Abu Dawud 20:3170
  34. "SHAKIR: Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Messenger have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection." - Qur'an 9:29
  35. Bernard Lewis - The Jews of Islam - Princeton University Press, Jun 1, 1987, pp. 25-26.
  36. "Narrated 'Aisha: I never used to leave in the Prophet house anything carrying images or crosses but he obliterated it." - Sahih Bukhari 7:72:836
  37. "The beautiful waning full moon light filtering through the glistening leaves of the Maha Bodhi Tree, the soft fluttering of the leaves, the serene quiet, took me back to that time long ago when the Buddha himself had sat very near this same exact spot. Or so I thought……. The mussein’s call to prayer for the faithful of Islam, here in this most sacred location to all of Buddhism, ripped me back to modern reality. I was stunned! How could this be? Here in one of the most significant spots of Buddhism, loud speakers come on at four in the morning every day, to shock and intrude upon meditators and Buddhist practitioners using this spot for that which it has to offer in its most special way? How could this be allowed?" - Islam's War Against Buddhism - Dhamma jarat, FrontPageMagazine, April 04, 2007
  38. "Praise be to Allaah. The deceased Muslims must be buried in a graveyard that is exclusively for them. It is not permissible to bury them in non-Muslim graveyards. Imaam al-Sheeraazi said in al-Muhadhdhab: “A non-Muslim should not be buried in the Muslim graveyard and a Muslim should not be buried in a non-Muslim graveyard.” Imaam al-Nawawi said in al-Majmoo’: “Our companions (may Allaah have mercy on them) agreed that a Muslim should not be buried in a non-Muslim graveyard and a non-Muslim should not be buried in a Muslim graveyard.” From this it is clear that there has to be a place that is exclusively for the burial of Muslims in a graveyard of their own. And Allaah is the Source of strength. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions, and grant them peace." - Burying Muslims in a non-Muslim country - Fatwa No. 7866 - Islam Q&A
  39. "An umbrella group for Swiss Muslims says they should be able to be buried “with dignity” and is therefore calling for Islamic cemeteries in every Swiss canton. Farhad Afshar, president of the Coordination of Islamic Organisations in Switzerland, told the Sunday newspaper Sonntag he was preparing a legal case concerning freedom of religion. He said that following the Bernese commune of Köniz’s recent rejection of a separate burial ground for Muslims, a legal ruling was necessary so that “the next time someone says no [to an Islamic cemetery] they are violating freedom of religion”. Islamic law says Muslims should not be buried with those of a different faith – something already possible in some Swiss cities, for example Zurich, Bern, Basel and Geneva." - Muslims want Islamic cemeteries in every canton - Swiss Info, March 14, 2010
  40. "PICKTHAL: The way (of blame) is only against those who oppress mankind, and wrongfully rebel in the earth. For such there is a painful doom." - Qur'an 42:42
  41. One example: In August 2009, Muslim mobs rioted against Christians in Gojra, over an alleged desecration of a Qur'an. These accusations are conveniently becoming more and more frequent and always lead to violent riots [sometimes by thousands of Muslims] against non-Muslim minorities. This one left over a hundred churches and Christian-owned homes looted and destroyed, plus many Christian men, women and children were burnt alive. - (Click here for images)
  42. "...Sayyiduna Abu Bakr, Sayyiduna Umar Al Farouq, Sayyiduna 'Uthman Ghani and Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in) were the consecutive successors of Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). These four Khulafaa (pl. for Caliph) are called the "Khulafaa-e-Rashidun" or the "Rightly Guided Caliphs." Together, these four Khulafaa ruled the Islamic State for about 29 years. They are called "Rightly Guided" because they ruled the people of that time exactly according to the Holy Quran and the commands of Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam)...." - The Four Rightly-Guided Caliphs of Islam
  43. "...The terms in the Pact of Omar for dealing with dhimmis are clearly in agreement with the sanction of Allah [Quran 9:29] and prophetic tradition. Therefore, the Pact of Omar, wrote Abu Yusuf, the great eighth-century Hanafi jurist, ‘stands till the ay of resurrection.’ ..." - M. A. Khan - "Islamic Jihad: A Legacy of Forced Conversion, Imperialism, and Slavery" - p. 106, Universe Inc., New York, Bloomington
  44. Pope John Paul II Makes Unprecedented Apology For Sins of Catholic Church - CNN, March 12, 2000
  45. "...The Reconciliation Walk is an interdenominational grassroots movement of Western Christians,...retracing the route of the First Crusade, apologizing to Muslims, Jews and Eastern Christians for the atrocities of the Crusades -- foremost among them, the misuse of the name and message of Jesus..." - Christian apology for the Crusades: The Reconciliation Walk
  46. "Officially, slavery has long been abolished in Mauritania, but the law has never been enforced and there are an estimated 600,000 slaves, almost one in five of the country's 3.2 million people, almost 150 years since the American civil war...A Berber driver, who would only give his first name, Mohammed, defended slavery. "It is our religion and custom," he said. "Why does the international community try to stop it? The slaves are better off with their masters. This is their fate. When they leave, they starve."" - Nick Meo - Half a million African slaves are at the heart of Mauritania's presidential election - The Telegraph, July 12, 2009
  47. "The Convenant of Omar", The Handstand, February-March 2006, http://www.thehandstand.org/archive/february-march2006/articles/abbas.htm.