Posted by Amtul Q Farhat
The Jerusalem Post:
The more radical Islamic forces are on the march. Many of the victims of jihad are now in Africa, but they will probably not be the last.
Muslims often say “sabeel Allah fi-al-sayf,” “the path of God is by the sword,” and this path, which once led to the gates of Vienna, or to Spain, or to France, or Asia, now seems to be leading to Africa.
Mali, Morocco, Algeria, Sudan, Libya, Nigeria and Egypt are all experiencing terrific violence at the hands of forces claiming to be carrying the banner of Islam.
The world looks on and acts slowly, if at all. Meanwhile, weapons proliferate, and many die.
Hundreds of thousands of refugees stream across Mali, as the UN debates what to do – much as it did when tens of thousands were slaughtered in Sudan.
Today’s another story from a different source:
Spread of Islam in West Africa
………..Islam reached the Savannah region in the 8th Century C.E., the date the written history of West Africa begins The Muslim-Arab historians began to write about West Africa in the early 8th century. The famous scholar Ibn Munabbah wrote as early as 738 C.E., followed by Al-Masudi in 947 C.E. As Islam spread in the Savannah region, it was quite natural that commercial links should also come to be established with North Africa. Trade and commerce also paved way for the introduction of new elements of material culture, and made possible the intellectual development which naturally followed the introduction and spread of literacy, and for which parts of the Sudan were to become famous in the centuries to come. In the Kingdom of Tekur, situated on both banks of the Senegal, Islam was accepted as early as 850 C.E., by the Dya’ogo dynasty. This dynasty was the first Negro people who accepted Islam
Spread of Islam Views from Wikipedia:
…………. American historian Ira Lapidus points towards “interwoven terms of political and economic benefits and of a sophisticated culture and religion” as appealing to the masses. He writes that :
“The question of why people convert to Islam has always generated intense feeling. Earlier generations of European scholars believed that conversions to Islam were made at the point of the sword, and that conquered peoples were given the choice of conversion or death. It is now apparent that conversion by force, while not unknown in Muslim countries, was, in fact, rare. Muslim conquerors ordinarily wished to dominate rather than convert, and most conversions to Islam were voluntary. (…) In most cases worldly and spiritual motives for conversion blended together. Moreover, conversion to Islam did not necessarily imply a complete turning from an old to a totally new life. While it entailed the acceptance of new religious beliefs and membership in a new religious community, most converts retained a deep attachment to the cultures and communities from which they came.”
The result of this, he points out, can be seen in the diversity of Muslim societies today, with varying manifestations and practices of Islam.
Conversion to Islam also came about as a result of the breakdown of historically religiously organized societies: with the weakening of many churches…..