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Thread: What if the Arab Conquest Failed?

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    Default What if the Arab Conquest Failed?

    Would the Middle East be Better or worse? Imagine if The Byzantines and Persian fought in a more united frond and stop the Arab invasion of much of the Middle East in the 7th century.

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    Senior Member greendzflash's Avatar
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    is that meant as the "we conquest the arabs" or the other way round?

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    Quote Originally Posted by greendzflash View Post
    is that meant as the "we conquest the arabs" or the other way round?
    Ever heard of the Battle of Yormuk or the Second Seige of Constantinople?

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    Bush Lawyer, that's me! TheKiwi's Avatar
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    You are talking about the early expansionist days of Islam?

    Did the Byzantine empire have the necessary flexibility to survive on-going challenges? My (limited) understanding is that it was very bureaucratic in organisation. Such empires can last a very long time so long as things are reasonably stable. Instability on the other hand presents them with changes they're too slow to face.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheKiwi View Post
    You are talking about the early expansionist days of Islam?

    Did the Byzantine empire have the necessary flexibility to survive on-going challenges? My (limited) understanding is that it was very bureaucratic in organisation. Such empires can last a very long time so long as things are reasonably stable. Instability on the other hand presents them with changes they're too slow to face.
    +1. The copt Church had dispute with the Eastern Othodox Church, which led Egypt and Syria vunrable from an Arab assult as the secterian divide helped the early calaphate to take grass root in the middle. Also when persia went down, the Byzantimes were practically on their own untill the bulgars assist them in the Second Seige of constantinople

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    Senior Member Mordoror's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheKiwi View Post
    You are talking about the early expansionist days of Islam?

    Did the Byzantine empire have the necessary flexibility to survive on-going challenges? My (limited) understanding is that it was very bureaucratic in organisation. Such empires can last a very long time so long as things are reasonably stable. Instability on the other hand presents them with changes they're too slow to face.
    Byzantine empire lasted pretty long
    What killed it was the constant threats at its borders (primaly the Persians but also the Slavs, the Bulgars, Venice republic etc....)
    It costed directly and indirectly a lot of money which helped the social instability within the empire (with consequences like coups d'etat, unrest, population moves so epidemies etc)

    The Arabs were just at the right moment and at the right place and they could have been very well defeated
    Yarmouk is a big blow because the empire was overstreched and weak
    Before that it had lost several Yarmouk like battles (and won also) and always recovered
    But it was the ultimate hit
    Had the Yarmouk battle happened some years before it would have had different consequences as the Empire would have been able to recover

    If the Arab muslim tribes would have been beaten (at Yarmouk or any other place) remember that they were too exposed to political instability because of the feuds among the Mahomet'heirs and descent
    A big blow may have scattered their unity forbidding the stabilization needed for the expanding of that religion by war (you need a stable rear camp to raise, train and equip troops) but also trade (islam spread also and in several areas, mainly, by the merchants)

    Once scattered it's hard to imagine somebody with the charisma of Muhamad to make the tribes join together again (or you'll need an earlier version of Saladeen)
    And once the tribes scattered they would have turned in what they were before for hundred of years : looters and mercenaries

    Ultimately the religion may have been contained or not among these tribes
    Military and trade expansion was a great tool to accelerate spreading of Islam but monotheistic religions have shown that even without military power they still can expand
    Who knows, maybe one persian king would have turned muslim for political purpose (much like earlier Frank/Goth and Vandals kings turned christians)
    Or islam may have stayed a local limited in number religion (like judaism)
    There is no way to answer that question

  7. #7

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    @Mordoror It would be unlikely the Arabs would start such a conquest again as the tribal [*******#417394]issues[/COLOR] would kick in again. [*******#3E3E3E][/COLOR]

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    If Arab conquest failed, then no Arab enlightenment. No algebra, no alchemy > chemistry, and the Islamic theology would be a fizzle. Whatever contributions they made would have been done in the Eastern Roman Empire or other existing power. The Arabs as a people would remain subjects of whatever empires were dominant in the region.

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    Senior Member Impartial Bias's Avatar
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    Meh. They'd still be fighting each other today based on ethnic differences. Instead of warring between the different sects of Islam, there would still be the warring between the different Abrahamic sects of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
    I think the Middle East would be roughly the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Impartial Bias View Post
    Meh. They'd still be fighting each other today based on ethnic differences. Instead of warring between the different sects of Islam, there would still be the warring between the different Abrahamic sects of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
    I think the Middle East would be roughly the same.
    You have to remember that the Middle east was inhabited by Copts, Aramaic, Medes, Alans, Christian berbers etc. Not Arabized peoples. The ByzantinexGreeks and Persians were dominate powers so the Middle east would be more stable. The middle east could be part of greater Europe if it was not for the Arab invasions.

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    Sapporo Snow Bunny budgie's Avatar
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    Empires must expand constantly or they whither and die. The Romans, Byzantines, Persians and even the Caliphate all broke up into factions and faltered. In fact the Arab expansion was the shortest-lived of them. They left behind a religion but for empire, that depended on the Turks.

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    Senior Member Impartial Bias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Type 055 View Post
    You have to remember that the Middle east was inhabited by Copts, Aramaic, Medes, Alans, Christian berbers etc. Not Arabized peoples. The ByzantinexGreeks and Persians were dominate powers so the Middle east would be more stable. The middle east could be part of greater Europe if it was not for the Arab invasions.
    I'm not seeing that. Europeans did a good job creating enemies amongst their friends during the Crusades. Europe isn't that much a a hegemony today either. Look at the Balkans. Either way, I still see ethnic conflicts. Religion is just one of the many things behind conflict in the middle-east.

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    Member Kiiski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Type 055 View Post
    Would the Middle East be Better or worse? Imagine if The Byzantines and Persian fought in a more united frond and stop the Arab invasion of much of the Middle East in the 7th century.
    If you are interested in the matter, I recommend the book The Great Arab Conquests by Hugh Kennedy.
    The Arabs were very lucky with their timing. Either Byzantine or Sasanian Empire could probably have beaten the Arabs had they not just fought a very long war with one another.

    I have no idea what Middle East would be like today, but the couple of centuries after the Arab Conquest would probably have been less peaceful.

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