Questions tagged [middle-east]

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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7
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4answers
998 views

Is there any record of 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 ...
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3answers
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Why didn't the Arab states industrialize?

Why didn't the states of the Arabian peninsula industrialize around the time that Europe and East Asia did? Was it simply a lack of accessible natural resources? Why not import coal?
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Why didn't Saudi unification include the coastal states of Qatar, the UAE, Oman, Yemen, and Kuwait?

Why are the following states independent and not a part of Saudi Arabia: Qatar, UAE, Oman, Yemen, and Kuwait? While their annexation might be difficult in our current time period, it should have been ...
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2answers
411 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, ...
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6answers
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What knowledge may have been lost at the Library of Alexandria?

Of course we'll never know for sure, but do historians have some reasonable ideas about what knowledge may have been lost at the Library of Serapeum of Alexandria, when it was destroyed by the Decree ...
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2answers
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Who really attacked first in the 1948 Israeli Palestinian war?

That is when Israel declared independence? Were the Jews hungry for land and started kicking Arabs out, or did the Arabs attack first, or is it sort of a mixed bag?
8
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1answer
817 views

How are Kurds and Chaldeans related?

The German Wikipedia-site states the following with regards to the ethnogenesis of kurds: "Bereits Wilhelm Gesenius versuchte die Chaldäer (Chardim) mit den Kurden (Kard) in Verbindung zu ...
5
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1answer
283 views

Did Hezbollah kidnap Russian diplomats, and Russia subsequently dismember Hezbollah family members?

I heard this story several years ago, I don't recall the exact details, and I don't even know if the story is real or not (if it is real, I'm guessing it may be exaggerated). Can anyone confirm this ...
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0answers
232 views

Was early Mari Sumerian or multicultural?

Mari was a multicultural Semitic and Sumerian city in central Mesopotamia. Despite its rich history during the historical period, I have found almost no discussion of the earliest period. This was ...
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2answers
1k views

What historical evidence do we have for the existence of Mohammed?

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 ...
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0answers
74 views

How many civilians died in Sabra and Shatila massacre?

Wikipedia gives a wide range of between 460 and 3,500 civilians. Is this range still accepted by modern historians? maybe this is a better phrasing: What parts of the disagreement still remains after ...
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3answers
494 views

Were Moses & Abraham historical figures?

History is not my area of specialization. I am curious to know about the historicity of Moses and Abraham from the viewpoint of modern critical scholarship. It would be great if references are ...
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1answer
796 views

Is this symbol found in Crimea Gothic? Indian? Indo-European?

What is this symbol's history in the West? —Mangup Kale, Crimea To me it looks like the Sri Yantra of South Asia, but Crimea is far from there. Was it distributed during early Indo-European ...
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1answer
9k views

How prevalent was pork in Arabia before Arabs conversion to Islam?

Before Islam and its prohibition of pork, was it a commonly eaten food? Or was it already prohibited by other religions/cultures? Or was it a kind of uncommon food, which was then prohibited? We also ...
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0answers
104 views

Why did many Hellenic or Hellenized names in antiquity end in -bazos or -dates?

Ancient names ending with bazos (or bazus), eg megabazos(great-x), Artabazos (again great-x), Pharnabazos. And Dates (Mithradates, Tiridates). I know Mithra was a deity, what does the second half of ...
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7answers
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What was Palestine before, if not a country?

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 ...
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1answer
333 views

Why did Allied Command maintain passive, especially Indian units in Middle East during the years 1942 and 1943?

I have found, going through stack exchange questions, a pair of links that speak about the presence. Those links are: Statistics on the number of divisions during WWII and the deployment of a (mostly ...
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3answers
2k 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 ...
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3answers
272 views

Were Israeli-Arab conflicts in the Cold war testing grounds for NATO and Warsaw Pact equipment?

During the Cold War, Israel and it's Arab neighbors often came into conflict with each other and fought a number of wars during which Israel often used weaponry from the West (USA, UK and France) ...
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3answers
333 views

How were the British and French Mandates in the Levantine area involved in WWII?

We all know the role of Egypt as a British protectorate at the time in WWII and the many battles fought in there. My question is, what is the role of the other British and French possessions in the ...
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2answers
242 views

Were the Hashemite kings of Iraq and Transjordan considered foreign?

The British made two sons of Hussein bin Ali, Sharif of Mecca, rulers of the new political entities of Transjordan and Iraq after WWI. They were both born in the Hijaz (now in West Saudi Arabia), not ...
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11answers
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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 ...
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5answers
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What is the origin of the Arabs in pre-Islamic Yemen and Arabia?

Genetically speaking, who are the pre-Islamic Arab tribes who lived in Yemen and Arabia in many centuries B.C. closest to? Where did the first Arab settlers in Yemen come from? I know that Arabs claim ...
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1answer
775 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 ...
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8answers
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Does the Ottoman Empire count as a colonial power?

Their role in the Middle East and North Africa was pretty similar to that of the French and British, who succeeded them. The French and British rule of their areas is generally called colonial rule, ...
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1answer
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What exactly were the dealings of Ea-Nasir (“The Worst Businessman Of The 18th Century BC”)?

I recently came across an article in Forbes by Kristina Killgrove titled Meet The Worst Businessman Of The 18th Century BC. I know that cuneiform does not probably translate fluidly to English, and ...
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2answers
810 views

Are there examples in ancient history of honor killing?

Honor killing, most often, the murder of a woman or girl by male family members. The killers justify their actions by claiming that the victim has brought dishonor upon the family name or prestige. ...
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1answer
703 views

What was clothing in ancient Palmyra like?

What is known about what people used to wear in the city of Palmyra during the third century AD? Was it more similar to Roman or Persian fashion of the period?
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1answer
93 views

Did the Buyids emerge as allies of the Abbasid Caliphate?

The Buyid dynasty were Shia sympathizers. However, I might have read somewhere that the Buyids came to power as allies of the Abbasids. This would have been as an anti Tabaristan or anti Ziyarid ...
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5answers
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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? ...
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3answers
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Is there any evidence of STD's in ancient times?

Are there any ancient texts that show or imply that their authors knew that certain diseases were spread through sexual activity? It seems like sexual contagion was recognized in the 16th century ...
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2answers
316 views

Why did Anwar Sadat establish diplomatic relationship with Israel and did that decision pay off?

Why did Egypt establish diplomatic relationship with Israel and did that decision pay off? As far as I recall, Anwar Sadat was able to convince his people and his followers that establishing ...
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1answer
270 views

Did vikings really travel as far as the Middle-east? [closed]

I've heard some rumors that Vikings have travelled as far as the Middle-east, and that would be where they've gotten the secret of making their steel so efficient, so early in history. Is that a ...
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1answer
172 views

Historical examples and numbers for the value of ‘Jizya’ levied by Muslim states

Context From the early Islamic conquests in the seventh and eighth centuries, down to the nineteenth or early twentieth centuries, under Sharia law, Muslim rulers generally allowed non-Muslim subjects ...
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Why are most of the world's oldest buildings in Europe and not in the Fertile Crescent?

Looking at the list of the world's ten oldest surviving human constructed buildings, many are in Europe while the oldest building in what (with a generous interpretation of the concept) could be ...
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2answers
651 views

Why did conquered countries after WWII recover, but countries conquered later continue suffering? [closed]

Nations damaged severely in WWII (suffered major economic collapse and civilian casualties) such as Japan, Germany and Poland have not only recovered but are doing better than ever before. Most of ...
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2answers
460 views

Who is the most recent (non Bush) father son pair who have invaded the Middle East?

Disclaimer: This is NOT meant to incite political debate. I am looking for a historical answer. Presidents George H W Bush and George W Bush both invaded the Middle East. Before these two, what ...
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1answer
180 views

Why does the Balfour declaration refer to Palestine, as opposed to the Land of Israel or the Holy Land? [closed]

The Balfour Declaration states that His Majesty's government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to ...
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1answer
140 views

What was the reason the Maronites lobbied for a state of Greater Lebanon?

I'm currently reading A House of Many Mansions: The History of Lebanon Reconsidered (1988) by Kamal Salibi. In the first chapter he argues that it was initially the Christian minorities of historic ...
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0answers
754 views

Which is the Historical Khorasan [closed]

The word Khorasan finds mention in many ancient texts pointing to a place in Middle east to Afghanistan . The question is what were the boundaries of the historical Khorasan which parts of the Middle ...
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1answer
417 views

What did the ancient Eastern world think of the ancient Greeks?

The opinions of the Greeks the Eastern world which notably included the Persians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Indians and Egyptians are known to all. They elaborated at length through their literature ...
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1answer
241 views

What was Asir's role in the Arab Revolt?

The Arab Revolt against the Ottomans is portrayed as being primarily a Hejazi phenomenon but I have read (briefly) that Asir, a territory between Hejaz and Yemen revolted first and the Sherif of Mecca ...
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0answers
196 views

Who was Ahmad al-Barbir al-Tarabulusi, and did he write about an old number-based middle-eastern joke about homosexuality?

While reading the book From one to zero. A universal history of numbers by the French historian Georges Ifrah I came across a retelling about an old joke about homosexuality but I cannot find any ...
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2answers
1k views

Why didn't the Christian kingdoms in Hispania participate in the crusades? [closed]

I have read in the history of crusaders that Catholic kingdoms in Europe including England and France and Holy Roman Empire participated in the crusades but not Spain, any clear reason for that? ...
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4answers
3k 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 ...
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2answers
5k views

What was the function of the walls of Jericho?

The walls of old Jericho have been dated to around 8000bc. This is thousands of years before the nascent civilisations of Babylon and Egypt built similar fortifications and thousands of years before ...
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1answer
267 views

How did Tunisia's revolution (and Arab Spring) begin?

I am asking because the most cited reasons are not that convincing: The self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi: He was neither the first nor the last to self-immolate himself. Poverty: Prices more than ...
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11answers
16k views

Is it true that slavery was endemic in Sub-Saharan Africa previous to the establishment of the trans-Atlantic slave trade?

Stefan Molyneux claims in The Truth About The Crusades that: Islam dominated slave trade between the 7th and the 15th century, while the Christians entered the market of human flesh much later - ...
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2answers
709 views

Are there any existing foreign language teaching texts from the Ancient Near East?

The various cultures of the Ancient Near East spoke a wide array of languages and we know that there was plenty of communication between cultures. We even have a language like Akkadian that served as ...
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1answer
2k views

The Abbasid ransom for the Black Stone (Hajar Aswad)

The Black Stone (Al Hajaru Al Aswad, popularly called Hajar Aswad) of the Kaaba in Mecca was stolen in 930 AD by the Qarmatians, and was returned 23 years later in 952 AD for "a huge" ransom paid by ...