Ask one hundred people in the United States what a dhimmi is and perhaps a dozen would know but most would admit ignorance. In Eastern Europe, the number would be higher because of latent memories of battles fought against invading Moslem armies and Islamic occupation over hundreds of years.
Beneath the seemingly civilized exterior of man lies tribal hatred, desperately trying to claw its way out. When it does, man can easily rationalize even the most heinous of his acts as virtuous. His target invariably becomes a demonized, marginalized group he can scapegoat as needed. No group has suffered more of this tribal hatred than the Jews.
In the early 7th century, an Arabian warlord started a new religion: Islam. Mohammed, forced out of Mecca, found refuge with three Jewish tribes in Medina. Relations deteriorated quickly as Mohammed raided and plundered Jewish trade caravans. Mohammed banished two of the tribes and defeated the third at the Battle of the Trench (627). Mohammed was merciless in victory. All men were slain, and all women and children enslaved.
Under Islam, Jews and Christians would live uneasily as dhimmis, a non-Muslim underclass, forced to pay the jizya (tax), forbidden to own arms, and required to differentiate themselves from Muslims in their dress. For them, the story was one of forced conversions to Islam, slavery, death along with the Islamic institution of dhimmitude.
This is the word that describes the parlous state of those who refused to convert to Islam and became the subjugated, non-Muslims who were forced to accept a restrictive and humiliating subordination to a superior Islamic power and live as second-class citizens in order to avoid enslavement or death. These peoples and populations were known as dhimmis, and if such a status was not humiliating enough, a special tax or tribute, called the jizya, was imposed upon them.
Dhimmitude is usually the direct outcome of jihad, which is the military conquest of non-Islamic territory mandated by Allah as a spiritual obligation for every individual Moslem and Moslem nation. But dhimmitude can appear among non-Muslims to this day out of ignorance.
Jihad can be pursued through force or other means such as propaganda, writing, or subversion against the perceived enemy. The so-called enemies are those who oppose the establishment of Islamic law or its spread, mission, or sovereignty over them and their lands.
Propaganda and subversion are the very means now being employed against the West and Judeo-Christian civilization and Islamists have shown themselves to be brilliantly adept at manipulating the gullible and uninformed western media and politicians in pursuit of their aims of world domination.
As I have written in previous articles, non-Islamic lands are considered the dar al-harb, the "house of war," until they submit to Islamic rule and enter the dar al-Islam. The 'infidel' falls into three categories: those who resist Islam with force, those living in a country that has a temporary truce with Islam, and those who have surrendered to Islam by exchanging land for peace.
The belief that all Islamic powers respond to overtures of peace by ending their aggression is but a mirage in the desert. This is proven time and again to be a delusion and is, in fact, a classic example of the mindset and behavior of the dhimmi.
A non-Moslem community forced to accept dhimmitude is condemned to live in a system that will only protect it from jihad if it is subservient to the Moslem master. In return, it is guaranteed limited rights under a system of discriminations that it must accept, or face forced conversion, slavery, or death.
In the early years of the Islamic conquests, the "tribute" or jizya was paid as a yearly poll tax, which symbolized the subordination of the dhimmi. Later, the inferior status of Jews and Christians was reinforced through a series of regulations that governed the behavior of the dhimmi. Jews and Christians were awarded a different status than other faiths. They were under protection as "people of the book." People of non-monotheistic faiths, pagans, or atheists were simply to be exterminated.
Dhimmis were excluded from public office and armed service and were forbidden to bear arms. They were not allowed to ride horses or camels, to build synagogues or churches taller than mosques, to construct houses higher than those of Muslims or to drink wine in public. They were not allowed to pray or mourn in loud voices as that might offend the Moslems.
Dhimmis were also forced to wear distinctive clothing. In the ninth century, for example, Baghdad's Caliph al-Mutawakkil designated a yellow badge for Jews, setting a malign precedent that would be followed centuries later by the Nazis.
The concept of jihad is not something now discarded by Islam as a quaint belief appropriate to the distant past. On the contrary, it is a cardinal belief in the 21st century for Moslems based upon Koranic injunctions. It is believed by millions of Moslems around the Third world, as much as by Moslems living in America, Britain, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. It is a belief, passionately held, that one day the entire world will become Islamic and accept completely the will of Allah.
It is vital, therefore, that the public in every non-Moslem country be made aware that Moslems consider themselves in a perpetual state of war with their non-Moslem neighbors. If Islamic armies are unable to defeat what they consider the "infidels," then a period of "truce" exists, which has several conditions. These include allowing Islam to be propagated, and if a non-Moslem nation forbids it or rejects mass proselytizing to Islam, then that nation will be considered as subject to jihad.
It is nearly impossible for sophisticated and secularized Western and European elites to understand or accept such medieval concepts, let alone the idea that a religious war is being waged against them. Western notions of peaceful co-existence between states, human rights and liberal democracy are all alien to the Islamic world. Iran's current president, the current ayatollah and the Iranian mullahs, all reject Judeo-Christian civilization as being in theological error. For them, the entire human race must embrace Allah's pre-eminence and the Moslem believer is the divine instrument to bring about the "Umma" (worldwide Moslem community) in whatever way possible, including warfare and terror.
With a fabulous and never-ending flow of petrodollars pouring into Arab and Moslem coffers, the belief among Moslems is that the time is now right for Islam to reassert itself in dominating the world and bringing it to Allah through all-out war, including nuclear war, if necessary.
Winston Churchill would have been shocked but not surprised at the craven appeasement displayed by most of the Western media and today's elites in the U.S. and European political classes.
With the civilized world still reeling from the harrowing images of the October 7, 2023, barbaric Palestinian Hamas pogrom in which at least 2,000 Israelis were murdered, that is the equivalent to around 30,000 or 40,000 Americans if you adjust for population, with babies and the elderly among those who were butchered, beheaded, and burned alive and with 200 kidnapped and dragged into Gaza as hostages, the pro-Palestinian terrorist demonstrations are beyond obscene.
The pro-Palestinian mobs display placards in support of the depravity of Hamas or Islamic jihad; no revulsion at the murder of children, rape of women and decapitation of babies; no horror at the fate of the hostages. Instead, they support the pogroms and display a depravity of their own directed at Israel and the Jewish people. The demonstrators include many Muslims who have been allowed into Western Europe, Britain and America by today’s dhimmis.
The Obama regime and the present Biden Administration are glaring example of such dhimmitude. Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., appeared on an ACLJ program and stated her belief that, “not one of those $100, billion U.S. tax dollars Biden is sending to the region will be used to aid displaced Palestinians terrorized by Hamas in Gaza. It is far more likely that money will go to fund Hamas, the vile terrorist army that just viciously murdered innocent people in Israel and injured or abducted even more. We know that the money is ending up in the hands of Hamas.”
But without a decisive defeat of present-day Islamist aggression and Islamo-fascism we may all be faced, sooner than we think, with the choice of forced conversion to Islam or subservience and wretchedness as dhimmis.
Look at how the Democrats in lock step grotesquely protested at the justified and principled removal of the Somali Muslim ingrate and spewer of hate, Ilhan Omar, from the Foreign Affairs committee. That is dhimmitude by an entire American political party.
Better, therefore, for us to be aware of the facts, to not become dummies and end as dhimmis.
Victor Sharpe is a prolific freelance writer and contributing editor. He has been described as a British born American patriot. He has authored seven published books including the acclaimed four volumes of Politicide which outlines the Islamic war against Judeo-Christian civilization.© Victor Sharpe
The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.