Syria (Modern World Nations) by Douglas A. Phillips

By Douglas A. Phillips

In "Syria," study the storied background of this state that is still a big participant within the center East and its politics.

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The Turkish city of Constantinople (now called Istanbul) was the capital of the Ottoman Empire. The empire stretched into Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and to Asia’s doorstep by the Caspian Sea. The Ottoman Turks were Muslims, as their society had been converted in the eighth century by Umayyad conquerors. The Ottoman Turks used pashas to rule over Syria. Pashas were military and administrative leaders who ruled with absolute authority. Syrians did not object forcefully to the Ottoman rule because these new rulers spoke Arabic and were Muslim.

Around the Kaaba seven times. The Kaaba is Islam’s most holy site and has a mosque built around it. It is a black cubical building and serves as the site toward which all Muslims pray during salah. While they circle the Kaaba, the pilgrims also touch the Black Stone seven times. Many try to kiss it seven times in their seven trips around the Kaaba. The Black Stone is located in the eastern cornerstone of the Kaaba. 57 58 Syria Many Muslims believe that the Black Stone was sent by Allah around the time of Adam and Eve to designate a place where a sacred altar to God should be built.

This is usually referred to as sharia law, which many Westerners believe is too strict and sometimes violates human rights. The four major roles of the caliph were to serve as the caliphate’s spiritual, religious, political, and military leader. Thus, even today, religion and government in most Islamic countries are closely tied together. d. 661 until 750. At its peak, the empire stretched from Spain to India. With Damascus as the home of Caliph Muawiyah I, Syria prospered. He was considered to be a political and military genius.

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