When Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) died, the entire Arab now united under one God, One Book, One Prophet and One leader (Caliph). They started conquering territories in Europe and Asia. Multiple times in history it seemed that Islam will overrun the entire world, but the following major battles saved India and Europe from falling to Islam.
- Second Arab siege of Constantinople ( 15th Aug 718 AD): This was a combined land and sea offensive by the Muslim Umayyad Caliphate against the capital city of the Byzantine Empire, Constantinople(now Istanbul, Turkey). The Arab Army and fleet was decimated. This was the major defeat of Arabs after winning a series of battles against Byzantine. The Arab loss resulted to Muslims never again attacking Balkans and Eastern Europe for next 700 years till 1453 (when Constantinople fell to the Ottomans). Had Muslims won this battle, they would have been able to enter Europe from East and the entire Europe would have become Islamic.
- Battle of Tours, France (10th October 732 AD): After failing to capture Constantinople, the Muslim Umayyad Caliphate captured North Africa (Egypt, Libya, Tunisia etc.) and attacked Western Europe through Spain. Spain and Portugal fell to Muslims. The Muslims set sight on France and Germany. The defeat in the battle of Tours stopped Muslims from capturing the rest of western/central Europe. Had this battle been lost, the entire Europe would have been overrun by Muslims now from West.
- Battle of Rajasthan, India (738 AD): The Battle of Rajasthan was a major conflict fought between the invading Arab army of the Umayyad Caliphate and an alliance of Hindu kings. The Arab army moving south into Gujarat was defeated at Navsari by Avanijanashraya Pulakesi who was a governor of Vikramaditya II, ruler of the Chalukya Empire. The battle was fought between 5,000 and 6,000 Rajput-Gurjara Infantry and cavalry of the allies, facing more than 30,000 Arabs. After defeat, the Arab forces were forced to retreat to Sindh taking great casualties. Unfortunately, such an important battle doesn’t find a mention in Indian History text books. Had this battle been lost, the mainland India would have come under the Caliphate and Gandhi/Nehru’s dream would have be fulfilled 1300 years ago.
- The Reconquista, Spain(2nd Jan 1492 AD): Spain and Portugal come under the Arab rule from 711AD. The Reconquista was an European endeavor to get back Spain and Portugal from the Muslims. The Reconquista ended on 2nd Jan 1492 after the fall of Granada in Southern Spain to the Spanish armies under King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. This ended Islamic rule in western Europe and Spain was the figurehead in fighting the reenergized Islamic Ottoman Empire.
- Battle of Zenta, Serbia (11 September 1697 AD): In 1697 a last major Ottoman attempt to conquer Hungary was made (after the Ottoman/Turkish defeat in Vienna in 1683). In a surprise attack, Habsburg Imperial forces commanded by Prince Eugene of Savoy engaged the Turkish army while it was halfway through crossing the Tisza river at Zenta. The Habsburg forces inflicted thousands of casualties, captured the Ottoman treasury including the Seal of the Ottoman Empire. The scale of the defeat forced the Ottoman Empire into the Treaty of Karlowitz (1699) ceding huge chunks of territory to Austria. Zenta was one of the Ottoman Empire’s greatest defeats and ultimately signaled the end of Ottoman dominance in Europe. Many people say that 11th Sept was chosen for World Trade Center attack due to Islamic defeat in this battle.
- Battle of Bhopal, India (24 December 1737 AD): The battle was fought between the Maratha Empire (led by Baji Rao Peshwa) and Mughal forces led by Nizam of Hyderabad near Bhopal in India in December 1737. The Marathas poisoned the water and the replenishment supplies of the besieged Mughal forces. The battle resulted in decisive Maratha victory mainly through the swift tactics of Maratha Peshwa Baji Rao. The Mughal loss in this battle signaled the end of Mughal Empire in India and rise of Marathas as a formidable force in India.
- Sepoy Mutiny, India (1857 AD): After the outbreak of the mutiny in Meerut, the rebels quickly reached Delhi, whose 81-year-old Mughal ruler, Bahadur Shah Zafar, was declared the “
Emperor of Hindustan“. After the failure of Sepoy Mutiny, Bahadur Shah Zafar was tried at Red Fort and was exiled to Rangoon, Burma where he died and his sons killed thereby finishing off the Mughal dreams of ruling India for ever. The success of the Sepoy Mutiny would have resulted to the re-establishment of the Mughal empire and subsequent establishment of “Gazwa-e-Hind”.
Had the outcome of any of the above battles been otherwise, then the entire world would have been brought under the boots of Islam.
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