Eunuchs and Ghilman in The Islamic Empire.

One of the first things we learn of when we study history books, is the British Empire and the heinous atrocities committed in the course of the British Empire colonising far away lands, people and cultures. We learn about the Aboriginal people of Canada, Australia and America who were brutally forced to give up their cultures, religions, languages, names, vast resources and indigenous identities, to the European bloc of invaders who established a strange foreign rule that terrorised the Natives beyond bounds. We learn about the Atlantic slave trade and the grave crimes committed against the subjugated black African people. But we hardly ever learn about the heinous crimes perpetuated by the Islamic Empire. We hardly ever learn about the Islamic slave trade, which was extensively more atrocious than the Atlantic slave trade in that it was more profitable, affected a wider demography of indigenous peoples, and went on longer! What’s more, slavery in Islam exists till this very day, and is afforded legitimacy by the unchanging divine Islamic text. 

One of the reasons why slave trade is considered an extremely contemptible practice in the modern world is – asides from the obvious dehumanisation of social status it immediately relegates its victims to, and the curbing of natural human rights – it ushers in contemptible social ills such as sex trafficking and male castration on a grand commercial scale! The unprecedented pan-continental economic success of raiding infidel communities and enslaving war captives was exclusive to Islamic culture, under the Islamic Empire. Naturally, it gave way to the demand for Eunuchs. Eunuchs were the preferred male slave choice for consumers, because they posed lesser security risks at the harems, in the palace and in the domestic affairs of ordinary Muslims.

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European Slaves in The Islamic Empire.

There are key differences between the Atlantic Slave Trade and the Eastern Slave Trade (aka Arab/ Islamic Slave Trade). While the Atlantic Slave Trade focused on transporting Black Africans to the New World to provide domestic and industrial labour, the Eastern Slave Trade was not race based. Prophet Muhammad himself, during the course of inaugurating a tripartite paradigm of Islamic slavery via his military campaigns and raids against the citizens of Arabia, enslaved some of the Semitic peoples of the region. The prerequisite for being enslaved in Islam for domestic or industrial labour; sex slavery and concubinage; or chattel, is not based on race but on being a non-Muslim war captive. As the Islamic Empire expanded out of Arabia via North Africa and into Europe, war captives of all shades – brown, yellow, black and white – were relegated to slave status.

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