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on July 15, 2004
The Dhimmi: Jews & Christians Under Islam is required reading for any American.
The author writes, in detail, in a marvelously researched manner. The mistake that many people make is that Islam is only anti-Israel and anti-Jewish. For from it. Islam is anti-American, anti-Christian, anti-Protestant, anti-Catholic, and anti-Buddhist, anti just about everything.
Even if there was no Israel, or the US was not an ally of Israel, radical Islam would still despise the USA.
When Islam despises you, your live is in danger.
This is a horrifying book. What is most horrifying is that it is non-fiction.
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on September 19, 2003
This is a disturbing book which reveals what is described as a socially acceptable Islamic conduct against peoples who were classed as "inferior".
For the most part the book describes these peoples as Jews and Christians who were classed as "dhimmi". "Dhimmitude" being further elaborated as the religious, cultural, and political fate of non-Muslims living under Islamic rule, usually when their lands have been subject to Islamic conquest.
Where the politicisation/allegations of racial prejudice, segregation, apartheid and indeed genocide have become quite common-place in the Middle East against the Jewish state, a book such as this is very timely in showing another side to the story. A book that reveals the painful, disturbing policy of prejudice, racial hatred and segregation of countless people who the book describes were classed as "inferior"on the basis of their religion alone.
Many examples are referred to in this study and many issues are discussed. The book draws a number of distinctions drawn and prejudices applied upon Jews and Christians who refused to accept and bow to Islam. Just by way of a single example, page 56 of this study deals with the "Invalidity of the Dhimmi's Oath".
With legal cases being dealt with under Quranic law, every case involving a Muslim and a dhimmi received a "peculiar" treatment in that a dhimmi was forbidden to give evidence against a Muslim. The Dhimmi's oath being deemed unacceptable in an Islamic court, which made it virtually impossible for any Muslim opponent to be condemned. To further any defence, the book describes that the dhimmi would be obliged to "purchase" Muslim witnesses, often at great expense.
This refusal of Muslim religious courts to accept such testimony of the dhimmi being based on hadiths which maintained that the infidels were of a "perverse and mendacious character because they deliberately persisted in denying the superiority of Islam". The same law preventing any Muslim from being put to death on account of an infidel.
This principle alone is further elaborated in this book with the example of the frequent accusations directed at Jews and Christians of having "blasphemed" the Prophet or Islam, an offence punishable by death. In such a case, the dhimmi was clearly in no position to contradict the testimony of a Muslim making the accusation and could therefore only save his life by conversion to Islam. (Although some exceptions have been recorded, this was the abiding principle nearly always adhered to.)
This is a classic study of this subject and it is not a "light" read, but a subject which demands attention. Thank you.
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on September 26, 2014
This is an excellent book. It provides a good basic history of the dhimmi status that non-Muslim people lived under in Muslim governed countries. Given the upheaval taking place in Syria and Iraq today this book should be read by anyone who wants to understand how life may be under Muslim rule in conquered countries.
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on September 5, 2002
I found this book to be very interesting, albeit only the first half. The historical accounts in the book are all footnoted to the original sources, and the author lets the events and laws speak for themselves.
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