The Middle East typically refers to the region stretching from the northern part of eastern Africa all the way to Pakistan. The region is centered around the Arabian peninsula with the Persian Gulf being the critical component of the region.

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317 views

Why didn't Hitler invade Middle East for resources first before invading Soviet Union?

Why didn't Hitler invade Middle East for resources instead of Soviet Union? Or at least invade Middle East first to secure the resources needed for sustained military operation? I understand Hitler ...
18
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5answers
1k views

Did Arab policymakers have plans for the Jewish population, in case of victory in 1948 War?

Presumably the Arab goal in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war was to defeat Israel. Total victory would probably mean the total control of the whole Mandatory Palestine, which at this point already contained ...
7
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2answers
233 views

Pre-Islamic cultural inheritance in contemporary Iran

In contemporary Iran, what are the effect of pre-Islamic Persian cultural heritage that are not linked to Islamic culture, religion and literature? In a previous question, I asked about ...
6
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1answer
127 views

Which Muslim factions during the Crusade used the crescent in their flags or banners?

According to NSNoob comments on Did Hungarian Army ever use Crescent banners? Crescent was used by Muslims since the Crusades. Wikipedia seems to agree. For example: the article on Star and ...
9
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3answers
577 views

How stable was the Middle East under Ottoman rule?

Since the outbreak of WWI, the Middle East has been a strategic area; many powers have vied for control. How stable was the region under Ottoman rule? Stable is, for the purposes of this question, ...
9
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4answers
430 views

Military training in the Hijaz during early Islamic era

The expansion of the Islamic rule during early Islamic era was quite impressive. Before 629, Muhammad's rule was limited to one city Medina. 15 years later, at the end of Umar's rule, the Caliphate ...
3
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1answer
413 views

How did Urdun come to be called Jordan?

In the Middle East, everybody calls this country something more like "Urdun" or "Ordon". How did it come to be called "Jordan" in the West? What is the history of the name of this country?
3
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0answers
75 views

What were normal bathing habits in Cairo in 1798?

In the old western world we did not bath much after the fall of the Roman Empire. I was wondering if that is the same for the population in Egypt in around 1798. This leads me to 2 questions 1) Did ...
8
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1answer
131 views

Muslims swearing by “the beard of the Prophet” - is it historical?

In Western historical fictions, Muslims (from the Middle East) are often depicted to swear by "the beard of the Prophet". "By the beard of the prophet, we will not offend you; but unless you ...
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4answers
1k views

Why did Baldwin of Boulogne proclaim Edessa a County, not a Kingdom?

[Edessa was] ruled by Thoros, who was officially a vassal of the Turks but in reality acted independently. He did not expect that situation to continue for very much longer without help, so he offered ...
5
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1answer
214 views

A zoo during the rule of Omayyad or Abbasid dynasty?

I recall that when I was in high school that I read a text -which sounds more like a legend- about an Arabic Sultan/Caliph who on a trip trough his empire passed by an injured (wild) animal (don't ...
3
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2answers
112 views

Why was Oslo I Accord so harsh or controversial?

The Oslo I Accord was an attempt in 1993 to set up a framework that would lead to the resolution of the ongoing Israeli–Palestinian conflict. It was the first face-to-face agreement between the ...
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1answer
180 views

Why did the Arab spring and Iranian Green movement failed for the most part, but the European revolution did not? [closed]

Why did the Arab spring back a few years ago failed for the most part, the Iranian green movement didn't get the result it wanted, but the European revolutions (such as the French revolution, ...
11
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2answers
243 views

What is the source of the error regarding the origin of the number zero?

What is the source of the historical error that the zero was from the Middle East and not where it is really from, namely India?
8
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1answer
245 views

What happend to the other Kaabas?

According to Muslim historians and others the nowadays known Kaaba/Cube الكعبة wasn't unique, and so apparently there have been many Kaabas around in the Arabic Peninsula, but the one in Mecca ...
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2answers
693 views

Iran: Zoroastrianism and Islam

If Zoroastrianism is so strong in Iran, why was there an Islamic revolution? Why is it proclaimed as the Islamic Republic of Iran?
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2answers
344 views

Did Mohammed exist, or was he created as a figurehead afterwards?

I have been listening to a podcast, called "The History of Byzantium" and in one of the episodes there was a discussion about the lack of reference to Mohammad or Qur'an in the century after his death,...
8
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3answers
2k views

Why didn't the European Christians take back Constantinopole?

Constantinopole was the focal point for the Fourth Crusade. The Christians lost and Constantinopole went to the Ottoman Empire. Then, the European Christians became stronger and went about colonizing ...
8
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4answers
940 views

Why didn't Turkish become an official language in former Ottoman colonies in the Middle-East and North Africa?

The main language in the Middle East is Arabic, however English and French considered as a secondary language. Especially in Algeria, Morocco and Lebanon (there are other countries..) people still use ...
6
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1answer
860 views

Any history to the current flag used by ISIL? [closed]

I know the current flag used by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is black with white letters stating: "There is no God but Allah" and in the middle of a white circle in black letters ...
-4
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1answer
89 views

How many stones high are the pyramids of Giza? [closed]

How many stones high are the pyramids of Giza, on the outside? There are three pyramids, did they have a pre-determined number of stones in height? in that case was it representative of something? ...
3
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0answers
48 views

Were the Hashemite kings of Iraq and Transjordan considered foreign?

The British gave two sons of Sheriff Husein (of Mecca) rule over the new political entities of Transjordan and Iraq after WWI. They were both born in the Hijaz (now in West Saudi Arabia), not the area ...
10
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2answers
821 views

What do “zones of influence” mean, according to the Treaty of Sevres after WWI?

After its defeat in World War I, European powers partitioned the Ottoman Empire, annexing some of its territories, and setting up other territories as their "zones of influence". What do the zones of ...
15
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6answers
1k views

Why did Jews not immigrate to the Muslim world?

Throughout most of history, Jews lived significantly better in the Muslim countries than in Christian ones. Moreover, after the expulsion from Spain, many Spanish Jews moved to the Muslim world (from ...
6
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1answer
324 views

In the Palestine Partition Plan, why was Jaffa allocated to the Arab state?

I'm reading through the document, "The Origins and Evolution of the Palestine Problem, Part II" by the United Nations. Under the provisions of the Palestine Resolution, they note that Palestine was ...
7
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1answer
287 views

When was the weekend changed in Jordan?

I have been researching this (online) for a while with no success. I know for sure that the weekend in Jordan was changed from Thursday/Friday to Friday/Saturday. But I was not able to find any ...
14
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4answers
880 views

What was Libya's form of direct democracy (Jamahiria) like in practice?

I've been following the recent events in Libya and I learned about the Green Book, which outlines Gaddafi's vision for a democratic socialism. Published in 1975, it proposed a form of direct democracy ...
3
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1answer
85 views

Are these Houthi Rebels in Yemen the same people who ran the Mutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen?

I saw on the news that the area of Houthi control roughly corresponded to North Yemen, which was a kingdom overthrown with Nasser's help in 1962. Are these Houthis the same sort of people who were the ...
8
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2answers
834 views

What did the Phoenician sailor trader eat?

I am not a historian my self, but I like to read history, ancient history. I am reading now about Phoenician civilization. I noticed in Wikipedia : the Phoenicians were the major naval and trading ...
51
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3answers
15k views

How did Israel win the Six-Day War?

Considering Israel fought several Arab countries, which had troops largely outnumbering the Israeli, how did they manage to win the war decisively, with much fewer casualties than the Arab countries? ...
4
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0answers
124 views

Ancient Israelite contact with Indo-Europeans?

It is well-documented that the ancient Israelite tribes came into contact with Indo-European groups in Canaan such as the Philistines (P'lishtim) (most likely migrants from Crete), and later the ...
7
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1answer
600 views

Cultural history of Saudi Arabian rulers' uniform beard style?

Why is it that all Saudi Arabian rulers and princes, both of the present and past generations, apparently wear the same style of chin beards? (Yes, they wear the same styles of headdresses as well.) ...
19
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2answers
5k views

What was the significance of changing the name of “Persia” to “Iran”?

As best as I understand it, the founding of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1979 was when Persia became Iran. What was the motivation for changing the name?
11
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3answers
996 views

What factors contributed to Jews moving out of the Middle East?

History shows that the Jews started moving out of the Middle East in the 1000s? Until then there were no major Jewish centers outside the Middle East (Babylon, Egypt, etc.) except for Rome. By the ...
19
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2answers
1k views

Why did the Arabs start the 1973 War during Ramadan, and did it affect their performance?

The Arab-Israeli War in 1973, besides the Jewish Holiday, also took place during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, during which practicing Muslims observe mandatory daytime fasting. Did this affect ...
4
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1answer
211 views

Who owns the Saudi-Iraqi neutral zone after the 1991 Gulf War?

According to Wikipedia, the Saudi-Iraqi neutral zone was created in 1922 by the British-controlled Iraq and the Sultanate of Nejd (the predecessor of Saudi Arabia). The same article continues: As ...
5
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2answers
497 views

The monumental/architectural sculptures of Petra - has there been any research on the likely craftsmen who executed them?

The Nabatean people who founded Petra are described as a pre-Islamic Arab people. Centrally located on the spice trade routes, they achieved fabulous wealth and settled in the city of Petra. A recent ...
14
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3answers
836 views

What do I need to know about Syria's history to understand the 2011-2012 uprising?

Syria is in the news a lot lately due to the current uprising, but it's not a country that many people know much about. It can trace its history back to the origins of civilization, and as a result ...
5
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1answer
324 views

Primary sources from Umayyad times

Background Most narratives about the events during the Umayyad rule come from sources that were compiled during the succeeding Abbasid rule. Since the Abbasids came to power through armed ...
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1answer
326 views

What responsibility did Golda Meir have for the Yom Kippur war?

I read in the book "The Iron Wall" by Avi Shlaim, there was a description of the Yom Kippur war that happened due to Golda Meir's insistence on keeping parts of Sinai and not trading them to Egypt ...
15
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5answers
7k views

How well can cavalry fight infantry?

In the Battle of Pharsalus, Caesar's infantry won by throwing their spears at the horsemen's faces. So how come in Battle of Zama and many other battles, including the battle where Khalid ibn al-...
7
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2answers
1k views

Why did Christianity disappear in North-Western Africa?

During Roman times North-Western Africa had a thriving Christian community, giving birth to Saint Augustine and a long lasting heresy. This is similar to many Christian communities of the time, from ...
4
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1answer
306 views

Baldwin IV, the Leper King

Baldwin IV was crowned King of Jerusalem, from 1174 until his death in 1186 at the ripe old age of 24. As a child, his tutor, William of Tyre, discovered he had leprosy. Understanding that he was the ...
5
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0answers
81 views

What property relations existed between peasants and those who took from peasants in early Ottoman rule in Anatolia?

What property relations existed between peasants and those who took from peasants in early Ottoman rule (1300-1450) in Anatolia? How was social surplus extracted from peasants, by who, with what ...
4
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2answers
157 views

Is there a correlation between modern Middle East uprisings/wars and Ramadan?

One cannot help but notice that the current shelling of Israel by Hamas has started in the month of Ramadan. So did the war of 1973 and a few other troubles. Is this just a coincidence, or is there ...
-1
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2answers
272 views

Does prohibition of polygamy always correlate well with democracy? [closed]

There are only 2 countries in the Middle East where polygamy is illegal: Israel and Turkey. There are only 2 countries in the Middle East that are true democracies: Israel and Turkey. Lebanon is ...
3
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2answers
494 views

How many Jewish refugee have been expelled out of Arab lands and when?

Were the Jews in Arab countries driven out after the Six Days War or in 1948 like some Palestinians in Israel? Did they lose their land? I checked this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_refugees
3
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1answer
208 views

Why did Nebuchadnezzar keep King Jeconiah alive?

When Nebuchadnezzar conquered Jerusalem he appointed Zedekiah as his puppet-king and took King Jeconiah and his sons home with him. For what reasons would the king of a large empire of antiquity, ...
19
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5answers
869 views

Recognition of Palestine?

What was Palestine before, if not a country? Could you give me some history on this? Also, the recent recognition of Palestine as a country in the UN could have far reaching implications. Are there ...
8
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6answers
309 views

Has there been other settlements in occupied territories in recent history?

The issue of Israeli settlements in the West Bank (and other territories) is quite controversial, including its legality and its impact on the peace process. I'm wondering if there was any similar ...