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Second Muslim War (Byzantine Glory)

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Second Muslim War
Beginning:

936

End:

943

Place:

Middle East

Outcome:

Byzantine Victory; End of Rashidun Caliphate

Combatants

Byzantine Empire

Rashidun Caliphate

Commanders

Romanos I

Sayf al-Dawla

Strength

150,000

100,000

Casualties and Losses

4,000

28,000

Background

The start of the war can be traced back to the end of the First Muslim War, where the Rashidun Caliphate was forced to accept the peace forced on them by the Byzantine Empire. They continued to try expand, but where constantly beat back by Byzantine-supported natives. The tensions between the Byzantines and Muslims continued to grow until the Muslims began raiding into Byzantine Judea again. This increased tensions to a boiling point when the Byzantines ordered the Muslims to stop this and pay them back for the raids. Eventually, the Byzantines were given a no, and they declared war on the Rashidun Caliphate once again.

War in Judea

The Second Muslim War began when the Rashidun Caliphate, with an army of 50,000 Muslims invaded Byzantine Judea, capturing most of the south in only a couple of weeks. The Byzantine Army's reaction was swift and brutal, they crushed multiple small Muslim rebellions along the way to Jerusalem, where they then fought a decisive battle outside the city. The Byzantines attacked from the high ground, destroying the Muslim right, then moving for a frontal assault, which pinned down the Muslim center. The Muslim left quickly collapsed, forcing a massive Muslim surrender, effectively ending the Battle of Jerusalem.

The next phase of the war in Judea took place in the the west and south of the Judea province, as Hebron quickly fell, the Muslims feel back, and their gains with them. The capture of Eilat in 938 was the effective end of the Muslim invasion of Judea, and the war would now continue, as the Byzantine were ordered to enter the Rashidun Caliphate, and to leave no part of the country in Muslim hands.

War in Arabia

The Byzantine Empire launched an invasion force of 150,000 to annex the Rashidun Caliphate, and their success was brutal. As the Byzantines advanced, they sacked towns, destroyed mosques, and massacred Muslims, in what is today, one of the most controversial campaign in history. The Byzantines followed much the same path they did 300 years earlier. Except, this campaign was much more lengthy, as heavily fortified cities were now the main points of defiance for the Caliphate, and widescale city militias brought many of the civilians defending the cities into a fatal position.

But the greatest trial was the Medina Line, a heavily defended line of fortifications and fortresses made to block any Byzantine advance towards Mecca. As the Byzantine pushed into the line, they were forced back, and the long siege of the Medina Line began. The Medina Line was finally destroyed after a year-long siege, in 941, and the advance towards Mecca began, an advance which would last 2 years.

The Second Battle of Mecca finally began on March 17, 943, and after a 4 day battle, the Rashidun Caliph, Sayf al-Dawla, surrendered, and the Rashidun Caliphate was officially disestablished. The war was now over, and a 2 year-long Byzantine occupation of Arabia began.

Aftermath

The Second Muslim War finally ended with the capture of Mecca, and then the subsequent Second Treaty of Mecca, which officially disbanded the Rashidun Caliphate. The terms of the treaty were as follows:

  • The Rashidun Caliphate will be disbanded, and the Byzantine Province of Arabia will take its place.
  • Arabia will be semi-autonomous, having its own Senate, and consul, but remaining a province of the Byzantine Empire, with Byzantine laws and military presence still applying.
  • The Rashidun Caliph shall remain in his position, but the powers of the Rashdiun Caliph shall become null and void.

The Byzantines now had a monopoly on the Red Sea, which would bring them great wealth when the Indians and Chinese started trading with the Byzantine by sea. The end of the war also gave rise to a new power in Arabia, the Arab Trade Federation.

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