Once all the Turkish tribes united under the banner of Osman, Constantinople became the ultimate prize in the eyes of the sultan. After all, Muhammad himself had promised blessings to the conqueror who brought the capital of Byzantine Empire under Islamic rule. Many attempted this feat, and many failed. It was the young Sultan Mehmed II who captured the city after a 53-day siege in 1453.
The jizya laws were relaxed in the 19th century as the Ottoman Empire declined and gave in to pressures from the European powers, but the caliphate and the sultanate remained intact, albeit weakened, until World War I.
However, if he succeeds in suppressing all opposition while keeping the country in a constant state of emergency, then the torrent the Kemalists had been trying to hold back will sweep the only secular Muslim country.
Quite predictably, the exit of Michael Nobbs has evoked a torrent of reaction across the hockey world. The essence of the messages conveys a veneer of anguish over why the Aussie has failed to deliver. The entire episode assumes the contours of a Greek tragedy enacted for a little over two years.
By John Domokos and Alex Rees (April 15, 2014 The Guardian) - From pictures showing a 'five-star jihad' to identifying the sheikhs foreign fighters draw inspiration from, three researchers in a basement at Kings College, London, have tracked and analysed the torrent of social media posts coming from Syria. It is a conflict they say is 'the most socially-mediated' in history, leaving a wealth of information to help us understand what is happening. Read more
The Argonauts sailed from Thessaly to Colchis under command of Jason, to fetch a golden fleece which was suspended from an oak tree in a grove, guarded day and night by a ferocious dragon. There seems, indeed, no adequate motive but a desire to obtain the precious metals, which were believed to be furnished in abundance by the mines near the Black Sea. Why these mines were symbolized under the appellation of a golden fleece it is not easy to say, and no satisfactory reason has ever been suggested. The most probable is that the gold dust was supposed to be washed down the sides of the Caucasus Mountains by torrents, and caught by fleeces of wool placed among the rocks by the inhabitants.
As I have mentioned before (Chap. XII) a short cut from Karatagh to Samarkand leads across the Hissar or Hazrat-sultan mountains. This we did not take, wishing to save our pack animals, but with light baggage and horses lent by the Beg we made an excursion to the top of the Mura pass whence one may proceed to Saratagh by the valley on the left of Fig. 124. We followed the course of the Karataghdarya which amid magnificent scenery paws the rocks with claws of silver and frets unwillingly at the yoke of many bridges. Near the village of Labijai a great moraine descends from a westerly ravine. On the slopes massive and noble clusters of walnut trees are strewn about in great numbers. At Hakimi we stopped for the night, our quarters being the portico of the mosque, the only shelter available. Here the view was grand. In front, framed into a picture by the pillars of the temple, towered lofty peaks holding up to the moon a shield of gleaming silver, while below the river foamed and surged in its rocky channel. Needless to say our use of the mosque gave no offence to the villagers except in so far as it may have curtailed their opportunities for gossip. It is the social centre of the place where the cronies assemble to discuss their favourite topics, where the barber is wont to ply his skill, and where any functions of like importance take place. 350c69d7ab