Antisemitism in the Middle East: North Africa

June 21, 2009 at 3:29 pm | Posted in Antisemitism / Antizionism, Islam | Leave a comment

A notorious explanation for Antisemitism in the Muslim world is the existence of the State of Israel and Zionism. Hence the victim is blamed for the offenders action, a common antisemitic argumentation.

The common notion about Antisemitism is that it was an exclusive European phenomenon that from there made its way to the Muslim world. However, that might not be true.

I am currently conducting research about Antisemitism in the Middle East. Since I am at the stage of looking for literature and sources I stumble over a lot of stuff.

Today I found a book (The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism, edited by Andrew Bostom, p. 468) with maps that point out antisemitic incidences in the Middle East under Muslim rule between 750 AD and 1900 AD.

Here are the incidences in North Africa (chronological):

800 AD, Tunis, Jews forced to pay an annual tax which consituted a substantial income for the state

1016, Kairawan, the Jews of the city persecuted and forced to leave, returning later they were again forced to leave

1033, Fez, more than 6000 Jews massacred

1066, Granada, More than 5000 Jews murdered during Arab riots

1145, Tunis, Jews forced to convert or to leave

1150s & 1270s, Tunisia, fierce anti-Jewish persecutions

1232, Marakesh, Jews were massacred, anti-Jewish persecutions throughout Morocco

1250, Tunis, Jews forced to wear distinguishing marks on clothes

1588, Libya, forcible conversions of many Jews to Islam

1785, Libya, Ali Gurzi Pasha persecutes Jews, many hundreds murdered

1805, Algiers, 40 Jews murdered

1860, Libya, harsh anti-Jewish measures, all Jews leaving forced to pay a heavy exit fine (except those going to Palestine (sic!)

1865, Jerba, Arab bands pillage the Jewish communities, burn and loot synagogues, and rape the women

1864-1880, Morocco, more than 500 Jews murdered, often in broad daylight in the main streets

1869, Tunis, 18 Jews murdered by Muslim within a few months

1875, Demnat, 20 Jews murdered

1884, Demnat, several Jews murdered amid much persecution

1890, Sefrou, Jewish quarter pillaged by Muslims, after a flood in which 54 Jews died

1897, Tripolitania, synagogues plundered throughout Tripolitania, several Jews murdered

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