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Benedict and Paleologus

Reader comment on item: What Do Terrorists Want? [A Caliphate and Shari'a]

Submitted by John Harkness (United States), Sep 15, 2006 at 08:59

The recent use of the words of the 14th-century Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus by Pope Benedict has resulted in a furor from the Muslim world. I do think that it was imprudent of the Pope to utter such words, no matter what the context, simply because of his position.

However, the comment and the one response by the Organization of the Islamic Conference lead to an interesting opportunity for historical research.

"The attribution of the spread of Islam around the world to the shedding of blood and violence, which is 'incompatible with the nature of God' is a complete distortion of the facts, which shows deep ignorance of Islam and Islamic history."

I would like to see a map that shows, over time, the exent of the Christian and Muslim worlds which is coded so that the expansions (and contractions) that are due to military conquest can be distinguished from peaceful expansion.

Does anyone know of such a graphic? Or have the time and resources to build one?

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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