Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society.  Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. © Copyright 2010 All rights reserved. Permanent Split in Islam Daniel 11:6 After some years, they will become allies. The daughter of the king of the South will go to the king of the North to make an alliance, but she will not retain her power, and he and his power will not last. In those days she will be handed over, together with her royal escort and her father and the one who supported her.       This verse describes the events following the assassination of Ali and how Muawiyah gained dominance over the Shiites.  In fact, Muawiyah and his son, Yazid, were responsible for the deaths of both Muhammad’s grandsons.  Yet, their “power did not last” because Yazid’s descendants were rejected as caliph.  It’s not surprising that an entire verse is dedicated to that period in Islam because it permanently cemented the division between the Sunni and Shiites.  The Whole Story:      Following the assassination of Ali, Muawiyah was still not considered caliph of the Muslim empire because Hasan was appointed that title by his father.  Muawiyah urged him to give up the caliphate but Hasan initially refused.  Yet, as the armies of Hasan and Muawiyah stood ready for battle, Hasan decided to make a treaty to avoid any more bloodshed.  In the agreement, Hasan would receive all the taxes from one province and an annual grant of two million dirhams.  That explains the first line of verse 6, where it says, “they will became allies”.       The treaty also stipulated that the caliphate would revert to Hasan or Husayn if they were still alive following Muawiyah’s death.  So Muawiyah devised a plot to eliminate Hasan because he wished to pass the caliphate to his own son, Yazid.  He secretly contacted one of Hasan's wives, Ja'da, convincing her to poison her husband.  Shiite’s believe that Ja'da was promised marriage to Yazid and a sum of gold in return for the deed.  In 669, with aspirations of power and wealth, she did as she was instructed.  Afterwards, she hastened to the court of Muawiyah, in Damascus.  The Shiite legend does not mention her traveling companions but she would not have made such a journey alone.  As verse 6 suggest, she probably took “her royal escort, her father, and the one who supported her”.  However, once she got there, Muawiyah reneged on his promises and “handed her over” to another man to marry. [reference]  Muawiyah died in 680 and left the caliphate to Yazid even though the caliphate should have reverted to Husayn.       Yazid immediately demanded allegiance from Husayn but he refused.  Yet, rather than fight, Husayn moved his family farther south, from Medina to Mecca.  The Shiites in Kufa revolted anyway because they saw Yazid as a tyrant who did not keep the practices of Islam.  They wrote letters to Husayn asking him to join them because they had no Iman (spiritual leader).  First, Husayn sent his cousin to check the situation.  His cousin wrote back and confirmed a force of 18,000 men who were prepared to overthrow the governor of Kufa upon his arrival.  Feeling obligated, Husayn gathered his family and a few followers and headed north with only about 70 men.  Meanwhile, Yazid replaced the governor of Kufa with Ubayd, who put down the uprising and beheaded Husayn’s cousin.  Ubayd traveled south with an army of 30,000 men and met Husayn at Karbala, a city in southern Iraq.  Husayn and the other men were beheaded and the rest were taken prisoner.  To this day, Husayn’s grave, in Karbala, is one of the most sacred and visited sites among Shiite Muslims.        Yazid’s rule only lasted three years because he died in 683.  His son was rejected as caliph and another family line or cousin took over the Umayyad Caliphate.  It is sad but ironic that both of Muhammad’s grandson’s were killed so that Yazid could take the throne but his dynasty ended in three years.  That explains the remaining phrase from verse 6, which says, “his power will not last”.      In 685, Abd Malik, became caliph and restored strength to the Umayyad Caliphate.  He made Arabic the official language of the empire and had all the important documents translated.  He established a postal service and developed the first Muslim currency.  He also ordered the Dome of the Rock to be built on the site where Umar built a fence.  Under the Umayyad Caliphate, the Islamic Empire reached five million square miles, the largest empire in history to that point (left).      In 750, the Umayyads were replaced by the Abbasids who were an Arab dynasty, led by a Persian general.  Although the empire was still Arab, the Persians had a significant influence during that period.  They even moved the capital from Damascus to Baghdad, perhaps to be closer to Persia.  The Abbasids traced their ancestry to an uncle of Muhammad named Abbas.  Consequently, they considered themselves more of a true successor than the Umayyads.  Yet, they were still just cousins.  Although they were Sunni Muslim, they converted to Shiite for a short time to attain military support during their revolt.  Afterwards, however, they reverted back to Sunni, which angered the Shiites, as you can imagine.  In fact, a Shiite dynasty eventually arose in the south to take half of the empire (next verse).  After that, the Middle East remained split for centuries but the Abbasid Caliphate ruled the northern half from Baghdad until 1258, when the Mongols invaded (verses 9-10).  clink to enlarge Abbasid Caliphate click to enlarge sitemap home
Next Page: “The Fatimids” (Shiite) Daniel 11: 7-8 this was: Page 4 on Daniel 11 click chart to enlarge
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