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Beni Israel or the last Jew of Afghanistan

Reader comment on item: A Million Moderate Muslims on the March
in response to reader comment: Reply to Yuval Brandstetter MD

Submitted by Ianus (Poland), May 10, 2007 at 13:33

European Muslim wrote :

>> Turks are not Arabs, just as Persians are not Arabs, and Pakistanis are converted Indians.

> The Pakistanis are not converted Indians, although some of them may be the descendants of people who converted to Islam from Hinduism/Bhuddism , when Islam first penetrated the region over 1100 years ago. However most Pakistanis would never classify themselves as Indians. Never . Period.

That they would never classify themselves as Indians doesn't change the hard fact that ethnologically they are such. Otherwise you must suggest that the Ghazni and Mogul brigands exterminated all the Indians and overflooded the empty Indus and Ganges valleys with their own children and grandchildren they had brought in their ox-driven carts from Central Asia or begot in India with their own non-native women ?

> A Main chunk of Pakistans population is Pahtan (they also live in Afghanistan and are the driving force behind the Taleban). These PATAHANS are descended from Jewish tribes who converted from Islam.

Linguistically the Pakhtans are members of the East Iranian Indoeuropean family and as such not semitic . But of course it's true that the Pakhtan tribesmen call themselves Beni Israel ("Children of Israel") . But their story is a bit different from what you suggest as it goes long before Islam started and has some historical probability behind it. The Pakhtans say that their come from King Saul's (Talut) sons Jonathan , Afghana and Pathan . Now it is not excluded that some Jews who after the Assyrian conquest of Samaria were deported to the Eastern provinces of the Assyrian empire , later moved eastwards settling in Bactria . Later with the Babylonian captivity more Jews were relegated to the East (the mountain Ghor ) and emigrated further to east. But it happened c. 1200 years before any sura was "sent down" to the illiterate Hedjazi seer .

Anyway, in Israel there c. 10 000 Jews of Afghan origins now . In Afghanistan instead there is only one Jew left - Zebulon Simentov. A more than 2500 year-old history of Jews in Afghanistan seems to have come to an end thanks to the Moslems who take pride in calling themselves "the children of Israel" . Quite symptomatic !

> Anyway, i'm getting side tracked talking about how Jewish tribes converted to Islam - so getting back to the main point, Pakistanis are not converted Indians.

Who are they then ? Converted Huns and Turkomans ?


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